Upon introduction the Gewehr 88 was far from a perfect infantry rifle, and there were many flaws in its design that needed to be worked out. To the German Rifle Commission’s credit, it acted quickly to resolve these problems, resulting in a pretty good bolt action rifle as an end result. However, one mistake the Commission made was to quickly cover up any reports that there were problems with the new rifle. Rumors from soldiers who trained with the rifle spread throughout the German military, which combined with the coverup bred an atmosphere of suspicion among many and speculation that a nefarious conspiracy was in the works.
One vocal agitator was Hermann Ahlwardt, a journalist and elementary school teacher who was known for his extreme anti-Semitism. To say Ahlwardt was antisemitic is putting it very mildly. In 1890 Ahlwardt wrote the book Verzweiflungskampf der arischen Völker mit dem Judentum (The Desperate Struggle of the Aryan Peoples with Judaism), founded the German Antisemitic People’s Party, and once gave a speech to the Reichstag where he proclaimed that Jews were like cholera and needed to be exterminated for the good of the German people.
Ahlwardt attacked the German Rifle Commission, German military and government, and German industry claiming that all had been infiltrated by Jewish conspirators who aimed to bring the German Empire down. He made claims that the Gewehr 88 was purposely manufactured to be a flawed rifle and that good rifles were secretly being produced and stockpiled by Jewish officials for some conspiratorial scheme. Ahlwardt called the new rifle the “Judenflinten” or Jewish musket, publishing two pamphlets by the same name in which expounded upon his theories. In particular he pointed the most blame at the German arms manufacturer Ludwig Loewe & Co., then one of the largest German producers of arms and military equipment. It’s no secret that Ahlwardt chose Ludwig Loewe for his accusations, the Loewe’s being a Jewish family. He even accused business head Isidor Loewe of being a spy for France.
Ahlwardt’s rabble rousing did the trick, and soon the German people were demanding that the Germany government investigate the situation or end production of the Gewehr 88 entirely. Of course, investigations of the army and Ludwig Loewe turned up nothing. Ahlwardt was charged with libel and slander, resulting in him losing his job as a teacher and a four month prison sentence.
In the meantime Ludwig Loewe’s name and reputation was damaged so badly that Isidor Loewe had to orchestrate a major business deal in order to ensure the survival of his factories. In 1896 Ludwig Loewe brokered a merger between several other arms companies that Isidor Loewe had majority ownership over. This included Mauser, Fabrique Nationale (Belgium),
Waffen- und Munitionsfabrik A.G.(Hungary), and various German ammunition companies. The merger created a new German arms conglomerate called Deutshe
Waffen und Munitionsfabriken (DWM), which would become a very influential arms manufacturer throughout German history.
Over time rumors of the flawed Gewehr 88 and the Jewish conspiracy would blow over, resulting in a fine German bolt action rifle that earned the respect of the average German infantryman. However, the Gewehr 88 was not complete, Germany now had a reliable infantry rifle, but was lacking in cavalry carbines and artillery rifles.
Request: This isn’t word for word but essentially I got a request about the reader being married to Newt and they all make it to Paradise and the girls are all hanging out with the reader. While doing this they begin to spy on Newt discussing how cute he is and calling dibs and one is about to go talk to him and he comes up and kisses the reader. Lots of fluff was specified so get ready for the fluff ride of your lives!!!