We wish to thank Matt Koehl of the NEW ORDER for preserving these letters, photocopying them for the Archive, and giving us permission to publish them, and Bastian Thoemmes for his help with a couple of German words.
—R. G. Fowler
3 September 1982
Dearest Commander Matt Koehl,
I was very glad to get your letter of 26th August—I only received it today, 3 September 1982—anniversary of the declaration of war by England and France (“for the sake of Poland”) on the Third German Reich. Where is Poland today? In spite of thousands of silly Christian-like Germans who daily send food, clothes, money, any kind of help to the people who, before and during the war, treated their countrymen so atrociously. See D.L. Hogan’s book Der erzwungene Krieg [The Forced War—Ed.]. No, I have no time for the Poles whatsoever unless they be “of the right sort,” as some are, but very few. The man who printed my NS leaflets and posters—1,200 of them—in 1948 was a Polish count [Count Potocki of Montalk—Ed.], who stuck up for Adolf Hitler, calling him “Poland’s only real friend”—there are always exceptions.
I am delighted with the prospect of visiting the free USA—Europe is—alas—a vast concentration camp—worse and worse every day. In the days I first came after the war, it was definitely better than now (“tout est relatif!” [“all is relative!”—Ed.]). One could speak then without “being careful the neighbors will not hear.” One held secret meetings, provided one was clever. And even the German police—in the service of the Allied Occupation—was German at heart. On 16 and 26 December 1954 my room was searched by three policemen. They saw the Führer’s picture next to my bed on the table. Made remarks as you can imagine, but that was all. They confiscated the manuscript of Pilgrimage and kept it. The Staatsanwalt [public prosecutor—Ed.] wrote to me a year later—1955—to tell me he had dismissed the case brought against me “wegen Staatsgefährdung” [for endangering the state—Ed.] and that I could go and collect my things, including the Pilgrimage ms. I went and collected it and asked the higher-ranked member of the German police, who received me (I remember his name) what he thought of the yet unprinted book. He answered, “I personally like it—be it a hundred times ‘NS stuff.’”—“Ja, es ist vor allem eine brennende Huldigung an unser Vaterland” [“Indeed, it is above all a glowing tribute to our Fatherland”—Ed.]. Which German official would dare to say such a thing today?
I’ll speak of today when I am free to do so under the starry banner.
I don’t believe Miss Cheetham will be able to come. She was unemployed and only got a new job recently—she has a secretarial job and works on a computer.
But that is absolutely no problem for me. People all imagine that I am far more handicapped than I really am and need medical or other constant “care,” while in reality I don’t. I can perfectly well help myself as long as I have my chair (with wheels) to push along before me when I must walk. I can cook my own food, fried potatoes nice and brown, or just peas or carrots boiled and then fried in a frying pan in oil or butter, or salad. Never more than one course and little of it. I like to serve myself because others always give me four times too much, and I hate wasting good food. I wash myself, dress and undress myself alone. Only need a quiet place, dark and quiet, head either towards the North or towards the East, to sleep. I never had a radio or a TV set and don’t want any. Frau Asmus with whom I am just now staying has a radio, but I never hear it. She listens to it in her room.
I can perfectly well sit in a railway carriage without anybody accompanying me. Only I cannot at the same time carry my suitcase and push along my chair, say when standing in line for a railway ticket. And, of course, if some thief picks up my suitcase and runs away with it, I cannot run after him or her.
My real disability is not my paralysis but my eyesight. My eyes cannot stand blinding “neon” lights. And I see people’s faces as through a thick fog, not distinctly—and only through my left eye. The right one is lost or as good as lost. That is why I’d like, on landing, someone I know, or can recognize me, to pick me up.
On my way I’ll visit a few comrades in France—and (if I am allowed to land) in England. If I have a letter (not on an obvious NS paper of course) assuring the English authorities that I am going to the USA and am only on a short visit to England, it might help. I’ll ask for a three months visa for the USA. My passport is in my maiden name. But I want, if I can, to get back my old Indian nationality which I had by marriage to A.K. Mukherji on 29 September 1939.
You are perfectly free to republish Defiance, Gold in the Furnace, or any of my books you care to reprint. Perhaps the “cat book”—“the true story of a ‘most objectionable Nazi’ and half-a-dozen cats” and my Impeachment of Man. I do not want a single cent of “royalties.” You please keep all the money you might get through the reprinting of my books for the NSWPP. I give it to you with all my heart.
Your lecture program (itinerary) enchants me. I’d love to see Florida—and the Pacific Coast also—from which I could go back to India via Japan and Thailand. Lovely. I hope I shall not disappoint you. I’ll speak in full sincerity and stress that the ideas are mine and expressed at my own risk. I don’t want any of our comrades, or the NSWPP as a whole to be held responsible for any blunder or questionable statement of mine. If any word of mine be looked upon as objectionable by the authorities, I am prepared to suffer for it alone.
With the very best of all greetings:
Savitri Dêvi Mukherji
[Omitted are the names and addresses of several of Savitri’s acquaintances—Ed.]