Marine Le Pen, the candidate for President of the white nationalist party in France, aka The National Front Party, denies that France had anything to do with Vel d’Hiv when 13,000 Jews were rounded up by the French police. Many ended up dying in Auschwitz. To deny that France was responsible is like denying that Germany was responsible for the Holocaust. It is a distortion of history and of France’s culpability in the horror waged on Jews during the war.

According to The Huffington Post Le Pen said:

‘I think that generally speaking if there are people responsible, it’s those who were in power at the time. It’s not France,’ she added, suggesting that those who carried out the raids in Vichy France should bear the blame, not France as a whole.

The Holocaust Encyclopedia describes Vel’Hiv:

Following the roundup of Jews in greater Paris, some 7,000 Jews, among them almost 4,000 children, were crowded together in the sports arena. There was scarcely space to lie down and the incarcerated Jews faced appalling circumstances. No arrangements had been made for food, water, or sanitary facilities. Only two physicians a shift were allowed in to treat the internees. The glass ceiling of the arena contributed to a stifling environment by day, as all ventilation had been sealed to prevent escape, and led to chilly temperatures at night.

After five days, Jews incarcerated at the Vél d’Hiv were transferred to other transit camps outside Paris. At Drancy, Pithiviers, and Beaune-la-Rolande, French police guarded these men, women, and children until transport to concentration camps and killing centers in the east. At the end of July, the remaining adults were separated from their children and deported to Auschwitz. Over 3,000 children remained interned without their parents until they were deported, among adult strangers, to Auschwitz as well.

German authorities continued the deportations of Jews from French soil until August 1944. In all, some 77,000 Jews living on French territory perished in concentration camps and killing centers—the overwhelming majority of them at Auschwitz.

 
France was responsible and no whitewashing by Le Pen will change that. Le Pen is France’s version of Donald Trump and is also supported by Vladimir Putin, though just as he did with Trump, Putin denies it. Putin’s attempt to destabilize not only Europe but the United States isn’t hard to see. He already is the richest man in the world, the only thing left is to be the most powerful.

-Jan Harrison

 

 

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