HC Deb 07 February 1955 vol 536 cc1524-5
6. Mr. Lewis

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs if he is aware that the West German Ambassador-designate to London is Heinz Heinrich von Herwarth, that this man served in the German Foreign Ministry during the entire Nazi period, and that from 1939 to 1945 he was liaison officer of the German Foreign Ministry with the Nazi Army; and whether he will inform the Bonn Government that this man would be unacceptable to the British Government as a German Ambassador, in view of his past associations with the Nazis.

Sir Anthony Eden

Her Majesty's Government informed the German Federal Government on 12th January, 1955, that the appointment of Baron Herwarth is agreeable to them.

Mr. Lewis

Can the Foreign Secretary say whether or not the points contained in the Question are correct, whether this man has past Nazi connections, and if so, can he—in this instance, at any rate, even if he cannot do anything about East German Nazis—do something to stop this growth of Nazism?

Sir A. Eden

I cannot take responsibility for what the hon. Gentleman says in his Question. The position, as I understand it, is that this gentleman was a member of the German Foreign Office and served in the German Army in the war. I am also informed that at no time was he a member of the Nazi Party.

Mr. J. Hynd

Is it not true that this gentleman was associated with, or suspected of being associated with, the attempt on the life of Hitler in 1944, and that his immediate chief in the same service was executed for his part in that plot?

Sir A. Eden

I think that the hon. Gentleman is right and that we have no reason to do other than welcome the appointment.

Mr. Paget

Is it possible for anybody to have experience in Government service unless he serves under the Government?