France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:36 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Balsamo wrote:Could you give the references of Burrin's book?
discussed here (published in English by The New Press in 1996, originally published in France by Editions du Seuil in 1993)
discussed i don't know, but mentioned, yes indeed. Thanks.
I have not read it, but does it suggest that Hitler actually gave an order regarding the expulsion of the Jews from France as soon as August 1940? My perception, until now, was that actually there were no real guidelines regarding the Jews in the West, except a Hitler's wish to expel them from Europe which gave opportunity to local authorities to take local expulsion initiatives.
As i have wrote, i have always read that the interdiction of the fleeing Jews to come back into the French occupied zone was actually Abetz idea. Hence, the begging for a power decree...i don't know.

In my understanding all those notes and letters from Best to Berlin were actually more report from the Abetz speech than some comments on received instructions. Has Burrin another interpretation? We are 2 months away of the first "ordonnance" issued by the MBf, aren't we?

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri Jun 29, 2018 12:15 am

Balsamo wrote:discussed i don't know, but mentioned, yes indeed.
I am only glad that, given such a misleading note of mine, that you were able to decipher the reference. It must have been a heroic and monumental intellectual labor.
Balsamo wrote:In my understanding all those notes and letters from Best to Berlin were actually more report from the Abetz speech than some comments on received instructions. Has Burrin another interpretation? We are 2 months away of the first "ordonnance" issued by the MBf, aren't we?
Burrin: Hitler's
directive to Abetz in that summer of 1940 was to reflect his attitude right to the end: France must be divided by all possible means and a great wedge must be driven between Vichy and the Anglo-Saxon countries. To this he added an order to prepare for the expulsion of the Jews, an item omitted by Abetz, who had written to say that French opinion was already so hostile in this respect that there was no need to take any further action.
(p 94) Burrin goes on to say that Abetz was eager to please Hitler on Jewish matters and would not "apply a brake" to Hitler's druthers concerning the Jews of France.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:50 am

Statmech:
I am only glad that, given such a misleading note of mine, that you were able to decipher the reference. It must have been a heroic and monumental intellectual labor.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Mon Oct 15, 2018 9:29 pm

Back to German intentions in Europe, by way of a comparison to the case of Italy (this is a bit of a comment on Bloxham's theses in line with earlier, similar thoughts expressed in this post - but more aimed at denier arguments about the Third Reich's goals in western Europe). Conditions in Italy differed to those in France, to be sure, but that's partly the point . . .

It is unclear when/how the Germans and Italians (Social Republic at this point) agreed on the deportation of the Italian Jews. Already at the end of November 1943 the Italian Interior Minister made a general order for police to arrest Jews in Italy, with no distinction between foreign-born and Italian-born Jews. A month later the ministry was searching for a 2nd internment camp in addition to Fossoli; a week after that it was ordered that Jewish property be confiscated by the state and at the end of January 1944 the Italian Jewish communities were ordered dissolved. Most historians infer that during this period the Italians and Germans agreed on the deportations of Italian Jews, mostly to Auschwitz but also with some being taken to other camps. Roundups of Italian Jews began likely before this formal, final agreement concerning deportation of seized Jews from Italy was made, whenever that was.

As in other countries, German manpower was overtaxed. In Italy, various state and Fascist party organizations would be involved in the roundups, detention, and deportation of the Jews. A note from a German diplomat to Ribbentrop in the German Foreign Ministry in December 1943 explained why:
with the forces at our disposal in Italy, it is impossible to comb through all the towns for the smallest to the largest.
The Germans' intention at this time was to be thorough and effective: as this same German diplomat advised Ribbentrop, for the Germans it would be best to delay making the request for shipment of the seized Italian Jews to "eastern territories"
because it is likely that concentration will take place more smoothly if the transfer to concentration camps will initially appear to be a final solution and not a preliminary step toward evacuation.
During November 1943, in anticipation of the finalization of plans, Dannecker (having been yanked from France) would oversee roundups in several cities, as Eichmann's office provided overall coordination. Dannecker also is thought to have overseen the departure of the first transport from Milan to Auschwitz in early December. Eichmann had as a contact the German ambassador to Italy, Rudolf Rahn, who had also served in France, in that instance under Abetz. In January Friedrich Bosshamer would replace Dannecker at the Judenreferat as Eichmann's man in Italy (Dannecker got booted a lot, it seems).

(Two other familiar individuals enlisted for the Final Solution in Italy included Wilhelm Harster, head of the security police and SD, who had been in the Netherlands, and Martin Sandberger, head of the Gestapo in Verona, who had headed SK1a of Einsatzgruppe A in 1941.)

In mid-December Rahn informed the Italians of German satisfaction with the early phases of the Jewish action and asked that they intensify their efforts even more. The need for the removal of the Jews into "concentration camps" was ascribed to "security reasons."

The choice of Fossoli as the main concentration camp for Italian Jews was likely agreed between the Italians and Germans; at a high level, the division of labor was simple - the Italians rounded Jews up and saw to it that they were held in the camp, whilst the Germans saw to their deportation to Auschwitz (or Ravensbrück, Bergen-Belsen, or other camps). In March 1944 the Germans took over direct control and management of the Fossoli camp, with Italian support.

The Germans also carried out small massacres and executions of Jews within Italy - with a total of about 303 victims shot in small actions, often in combination with security operations - as late as spring 1945.

In Italy, when in late 1943 they didn't encounter paralyzing or obstructionist complications from internal politics, the Germans were able to move directly against all Jews in Italy, as they had attempted to do in France. Also, during this phase in Italy, even in the context of the military crisis and civil war, the Germans could draw on a number of organized formations which the Salo Republic maintained for public order and security to support the goal of removing Italian Jews to Auschwitz and elsewhere. In Rome and elsewhere, however, as the battle for Italy progressed and stalled, and stalled and progressed, during the period of the roundups, Italian police often withdrew their cooperation and German intentions could only be partially realized in Italy.

Of Italy's 47,000 Jews (1938 census), nearly 9,000 were deported from Italy and its territories, most of them perishing in Auschwitz.

(I'll update this post in the near future. Source: Sullam, The Italian Executioners, pp 46-57, 157)
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Tue Oct 16, 2018 1:26 pm

After European Jewry had been definitively smashed in operations in the East and the Final Solution "was over" - according to Bloxham (Final Solution, pp 243-245) - the Italian Social Republic carried out a series of operations, often with the Germans, to continue rounding up and incarcerating Italian Jews and then to transfer them to the Germans, who took the arrested Jews mostly to Auschwitz. Some of the continuing actions in Italy were carried out by the Germans, especially during summer 1944 when the SS made arrests. As we will see, in the latter case there can be little question that the fate of the seized Italian Jews would have been known, at least to one of the German raiders.

At this time the German SS raided the Ospedale Civile and a mental asylum on San Servolo in Venice. A Jewish collaborator from Trieste, Mauro Grini, gave the Germans assistance. At the Ospedale Civile the public security officer, Marshal Casella, was enlisted to lead the SS action team "to the Custody Room" where Jewish patients had found a hiding place. Among those taken by the German SS team were Giuseppe Fano and his family; both Giuseppe and his wife, Letizia, would later, after the war, write about this arrest.

Accompanying security officer Casella into the Custody Room at the Ospedale Civile was SS-Hauptsturmführer Kurt Franz, having been transferred in August 1943 from Einsatz Reinhard to Trieste. Franz led the German teams in both Osepedale Civile and San Servolo actions. Stangl (and Grini) had been operating since December 1943 in the Varese area, near the Swiss border, conducting arrests of Italian Jews attempting to flee the country.

Sullam, The Italian Executioners, pp 86, 103, 163
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Tue Oct 16, 2018 4:56 pm

In Brescia, Italy, where just 56 Jews lived, arrests of Jews began in early December 1943 following the Interior Ministry's arrest order.

The Italians and Germans were able to arrest 26 of the town's Jews, who were jailed locally before being sent either to the camp at Fossoli or turned over directly to the Germans - and then taken to Auschwitz.

Sullam quotes from two rather frank arrest reports (much of the rhetoric of the time concerned the grave threat to security presented by elderly Jews, Jewish children, Jewish community leaders and the like): one report notes that
Raul Natan and his brother Assalone were arrested in Calvagese della Riviera [a small town near Brescia] for belonging to the Jewish race
and a second report says that
the Command station of Remedello arrested the following for belonging to the Jewish race . . .
naming Said Lusena and his sons, one a chemist and the other an agricultural consultant.

Among the Jews from Brescia arrested and sent to Auschwitz were Guido Della Volta and his brother Alberto. Prior to his arrest Guido had been a businessman and local official, commissioner of a regional Fascist trade association. The Della Volta brothers were on the first transport from Fossoli to Auschwitz, which departed for Poland on 22 February 1944. Alberto came to know Primo Levi in Auschwitz; in his writings, Levi referred to him as "my friend Alberto." Alberto perished on the Auschwitz death march, and Guido was killed in the gas chambers in October 1944, among the last to be murdered there, after having worked in the camp for some months.

Even after the putative completion of the Final Solution, the Germans, and Italians in this case, believed it necessary to destroy as many Jews from the tiny Jewish community of Brescia as they could.

Sullam, pp 110-117
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:34 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:15 am
. . . and also a shitload of stuff arriving this fall, and into the winter, all on the Holocaust, as posted previously:

. . .
* Simon Levis Sullam, The Italian Executioners: The Genocide of the Jews of Italy
This book is excellent and thought provoking. It reminds me, in its clarity and succinctness, a little of Lozowick's study of Eichmann's office in western Europe but, for all its brevity, it is more far-ranging, exploring wider circles of perpetrators and "bystanders." I don't know the details of the Final Solution in Italy but, based on the handful of things I've read, Sullam raises some big questions. His study seems to set up more in-depth research as its tight case studies could be elaborated on. In this vein, I found myself wanting to read more about the Trieste operators; about the Jewish collaborators Mauro Grini (in the north) and Celeste Di Porto (in Rome); about the inner workings of the Social Republic; about the overall course of the anti-Jewish operations and why in genocidal conditions "only" 20% of Italy's Jews were rounded up and sent to Auschwitz and elsewhere; about the violence that spread with the Allied military campaigns, the resistance, German intervention, and the Salo Republic's holding operations; and about the Rome, Florence, and Venice actions.

I should also add here a note on my posts in this thread making use of arguments and evidence presented by Sullam; I focused these posts on the implications of Sullam's findings for German Judenpolitik, not on his central argument, which is quite different in focus - namely, that with the Allied invasion and collapse of Mussolini's government, and with the German invasion and the establishment of the Social Republic - and amidst civil war conditions, the internal situation in Italy reached a tipping point in which genocidal solutions were embraced by the Fascists and elements of Italian society. In turn, with the breakdown of order and the inversion of normal reality, violence became widespread - and polycratic, with the "solution" of the elimination of the Jews embraced for ideological-political reasons as well as out of fear, greed, and opportunism.

In this sense, aside from German hopes for the destruction of the Jews in western Europe, what happened in Italy during fall 1943 was that military and political events created an internal situation favoring genocidal violence and, in the process, aligning Italian politics and society with German goals, in which the Germans could at last act to realize their Judenpolitik in Italy.

In other words, despite his sketching the genocidal policies of the Third Reich, Sullam's argument is focused on what happened inside Italy and how genocide of the Jews became a goal of the Italian Fascists and those in their orbit. What Sullam describes is not a case of a top down plan (from Berlin) playing out linearly in Italy, but a many sided process, with top down and bottoms up elements, in which the Germans found conditions ripening for them. His concluding chapter, in fact, critiques the postwar and still-current notion of the "good Italians" whose character was benevolent and humanistic and would not brook harm to the Jews of Italy or areas under Italy's control.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:08 am

I am going to read this first...

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Wed Jan 02, 2019 2:23 am

Re Laval.

On 13 August 1942, less than a week after Reigner's telegram to Wise, Reigner's associate Richard Lichtheim wrote an article for the Zionist UPA entitled, "What is happening to the Jews of Europe?" Lichtheim's article was published in The Transcript in Seattle in installments during October and November 1942. In October the article was excerpted for distribution at a rally at Royal Albert Hall in London chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

In a letter on the report summarized in the Reigner telegram, Reigner had cited reports of the July 1942 deportations from Paris; in his article Lichtheim too raised the matter of the deportations from France (and also Belgium and the Netherlands in western Europe). He wrote that the deportations put western European Jews "in the hands of Hitler" and that as a result the Germans could ship the Jews wherever they pleased and do with them what they wished: the thought behind Reigner's telegram had not sunk in because Lichtheim wrote that the Jews in the Nazis' hands would be locked into ghettos, camps and dungeons and would die of starvation or be "shot, hanged, buried alive, burnt, or beaten to death" by the Nazis and their allies. Lichtheim estimated that if the Allied military did not stop the Germans, 3-4, even 5 million Jews would perish.

In late September Lichtheim sent an urgent cable to Jewish Agency offices following up on the summer's reports:
ALL INFORMATION LATELY RECEIVED CONFIRMS PREVIOUS REPORTS ABOUT EXTERMINATION JEWS FOLLOWING DEPORTATION FROM VARIOUS COUNTRIES TO GERMANY OR POLAND ALSO FOLLOWING DEPORTATION WITHIN POLAND STOP ONLY SMALL MINORITY STILL USED FOR LABOURSERVICE STOP
and
TO SAVE REMNANTS EUROPEAN JEWRY BULGARIA ROMANIA HUNGARY STRONG PRESSURE STERNEST WARNINGS NECESSARY STOP MOST URGENT RENEWED REPRESENTATIONS STATE DEPARTMENT TO LAVAL WHO STILL PRETENDS IGNORANCE REGARDING FATE DEPORTEES . . .
Matthäus, ed, Predicting the Holocaust, pp 178-193
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Wed Jan 16, 2019 10:07 pm

Semelin discusses the Consistoire's protest letter of 25 August 1942, citing Klarsfeld, in much the same vein as Seibel and Poznanski. He is sharply critical Marrus & Paxton (and to some extent Poznanski) on the topic of anti-Semitism amongst the French, arguing that they misread Vichy propaganda and policy statements/explanations as signs of people's attitudes.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Wed May 01, 2019 7:50 pm

I hesitate to do this but what the heck . . . Adler has some interesting notes on knowledge among French Jews of German plans including the extermination of the Jews.

Adler describes a 24 August 1941 appeal to the Jews of the world broadcast on Radio Moscow by Yiddish poet David Bergelson, which, Adler says, contained "a warning . . . of the danger of the extermination of Polish and Russian Jewry." This appeal, which is well known and came during the height of Einsatzgruppen first-wave operations, was particularly important among the immigrant Jews of Paris. According to Adler the impact of this appeal - which the Communists in Paris transcribed and distributed to Jews in Paris - was "profound." This word of the destruction of Jews in the East reached Jews in Paris almost a year before the famous BBC broadcasts of summer 1942. (The Radio Moscow appeal, which Adler describes as Bergelson's, was a project of a group which later became the core of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee led by Solomon Mikhoels and IIRC was a broadcast of a rally which included numerous other members of the committee including Ehrenburg; Poznanski describes the impact of Bergelson's warning about extermination and call for Jews to support the USSR very similarly to Adler, p 233.)

As early as May 1942 - before the July roundups and transports to Auschwitz but during the earlier, sporadic transports to the camp - the Communists changed their policy on escapes from Pithiviers and Beaune-La-Rolande camps, now urging their members to "break out, to tear down the gates of the camps and escape" because "deportation was death." (p 180) This note may have been hyperbolic, but it should be stressed that it came with a significant policy change and thus may well not have been made cavalierly.

Adler writes a number of times about the Consistoire's protest/letter, usually dated 25 August 1942, giving a citation to the CDJC archive. He adds a new citation: Dr. J. Weill's deposition, 27 June 1974, CDJC, DXLXI-37. (This must be Dr. Joseph Weill, active in illegal work and later the resistance. Early on Weill worked with inmates at Gurs and Rivesaltes and then became an important figure in the OSE, helping save Jewish children from deportation - convinced of the dire outcome of deportation, Weill got a number of UGIF children's homes shut down and their charges dispersed, to hide them from the Germans.) Presumably Weill at this time gave contextual or other information, from memory, about how the Consistoire learned about the eastern exterminations. The Consistoire's knowledge of the extermination by August 1942 is central to Adler's evaluation of the Consistoire's wartime actions and behavior.

According to Adler, "the Central Consistory in Lyon was informed of Jewish mass extermination, most likely through a Swiss source." Adler adds that the Consistoire and the UGIF "made the deliberate choice not to disseminate the information." However, the Consistoire leaders were not the only ones who became aware of the exterminations in the East. The Communists (Adler himself was a foreign-born Jewish Communist active in the Communist resistance), based on similar information obtained "from a Pole who had returned to Paris from Poland," included news about the extermination in an underground publication in November 1942. (p 47) The Pole making the report in November 1942 was a Communist "a former member of the International Brigades, who had just returned from Krakow. He informed Solidarity's leadership [Solidarity was a PCF front group] that the Jews were being exterminated by gas" and mentioned a figure of 11,000 murders in Auschwitz that occurred during his time in Krakow. The French Communists "hesitated" before publishing the report from Krakow - and then didn't include a reference to murder by gas. The report appeared in Unzer Vort 50 (November 1942) - a copy of which is in the CDJC archives. (pp 202, 277)

Adler says that few of those not in the know believed the reports (for example, Amelot viewed the Unzer Vort report as Communist propaganda), and that, though UGIF had the same knowledge, UGIF decided not to alarm "the Jewish population [so] deliberately those a policy of silence." (p 47) Adler does say as well that informed Jewish leaders, due to distance from the extermination camps and differences between France and the East, ”were never able to evaluate fully” the pieces of information that they did obtain and thus couldn’t draw a complete picture of German (and Vichy) policies including the meaning and destinations of deportation actions and what was happening in the East. (p 239)

By 1943, however, the Communist-dominated Jewish united front group UJRE was writing clearly enough that when it came to the Jews of France, "No distinctions are made in their extermination. . . . Workers or bourgeois, Zionists or Communists, believers or atheists, they are all Jews." (p 210)

(Adler describes the prominent role of Jews in the Communist resistance in Paris and especially in its armed formations and armed actions against the Germans; the Paris Jewish Communists consistently subordinated themselves and activity to the general Communist line, for example, never sabotaging Jewish transports to the East or targeting members of the Judenreferat in Paris, even as they sabotaged trains and shot other Germans. Sadly for the Judeo-Bolshevik charge, Adler also details in this vein how the PCF used the discipline and loyalty of the young Jewish fighters, abandoning them by refusing to act on their requests for improved security measures and allowing them to be identified, seized and executed by the Germans - the dissolution of the Manouchian group in early 1944 the culmination of a series of German arrests of Jewish Communists who, Claude Levy charged, were in the eyes of PCF leadership "expendable." p 217)
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Thu May 02, 2019 2:00 pm

Is this Jacques Adler you are referring to? His 1985 book?

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Thu May 02, 2019 3:10 pm

yes, I should have added that at the time Adler did this study the archives of the Consistoire were closed to researchers, according to Adler
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Tue May 07, 2019 10:16 am

Ludivine Broch in her book Ordinary Workers, Vichy and the Holocaust - on French railway workers during the war - laments the dearth of source material concerning the Shoah in the files of the SNCF (French national rail company) archives but does note one interesting find relating to the Final Solution. On the 1944 arrest of a Jewish SNCF employee, Ferdinand Allant, internal SNCF correspondence, recommending urgent action to intercede with the Germans, had a handwritten annotation saying that speed was essential to "save" Allant from detention and its attendant effects . . . "if it is not in fact a matter of life and death." (p 176)

This note dates from early 1944, as small roundups continued, but almost two years after the Vel d'Hiv action. Broch comments that the annotation reveals that "Those pushing papers knew only too well that [Allant's] arrest and internment were bad signs of things to come." She goes on to explain that throughout the war the Jewish actions remained obscure, even among SNCF personnel, a small number of whose personnel were victims and whose trains were used to transport Jews to holding camps and then out of France. She notes that the underground press (as above) printed stories about the Jewish deportations and even in railway circles - but just the same very few transports, relative to the total number of rail journeys, involved the Final Solution; only a very small number of railroad personnel were involved; SNCF managers were on the receiving end of orders, not involved in policy or even most logistical details; and, generally, the meaning of the destinations didn't become clear. Jewish actions were "assimilated" to wider persecutions in France, and "the specificity of the Jewish persecution or even deportations never became understood . . ." Rumors, isolated scraps of information, and even resistance claims "never equated to a full understanding of the extermination of the Jews." (pp 192-193)

It seems reasonable to conclude that some SCNF managers had dark forebodings, somewhat informed, about the fate of the deported Jews; the documentary record doesn’t give deeper insight into how they formed these fears or what they made of them. In fact, Broch says that the archival record has only very few (bureaucratic) references to the Jewish transports at all, a few items on payments and the like.

Broch's conclusion is in line with Adler's much earlier work and much of what has been said in this tread, of course. I assume that for Laval, Bousquet, and other highly placed Vichy officials, much more involved in the planning and negotiating of the Jewish actions with the Germans, the sense of disaster accompanying the Jewish transports would have been far more intense than the feelings among SNCF managers. (Now on to Gildea's book on the French resistance; Gildea is a revisionist historian in the correct sense of the term, or as Gildea says, he writes against the grain of much of the historiography. Gildea was, in fact, a reader of Broch's PhD dissertation.)
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Thu May 09, 2019 7:00 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 7:50 pm
Adler writes a number of times about the Consistoire's protest/letter, usually dated 25 August 1942, giving a citation to the CDJC archive. He adds a new citation: Dr. J. Weill's deposition, 27 June 1974, CDJC, DXLXI-37. (This must be Dr. Joseph Weill, active in illegal work and later the resistance. Early on Weill worked with inmates at Gurs and Rivesaltes and then became an important figure in the OSE, helping save Jewish children from deportation - convinced of the dire outcome of deportation, Weill got a number of UGIF children's homes shut down and their charges dispersed, to hide them from the Germans.) Presumably Weill at this time gave contextual or other information, from memory, about how the Consistoire learned about the eastern exterminations. The Consistoire's knowledge of the extermination by August 1942 is central to Adler's evaluation of the Consistoire's wartime actions and behavior.

According to Adler, "the Central Consistory in Lyon was informed of Jewish mass extermination, most likely through a Swiss source." Adler adds that the Consistoire and the UGIF "made the deliberate choice not to disseminate the information." However, the Consistoire leaders were not the only ones who became aware of the exterminations in the East
Gildea, in Fighters in the Shadows, says of Weill, as OSE and other relief activists tried to save Jewish children in 1942, that
Nothing could be said directly [to the parents by these activists] about the fate that awaited those who were deported, although Dr Weill had fairly good evidence about the gas chambers.
(p 195, no citation) Also, according to Gildea, by 1943
Vichy was finished as a 'shield' and rumors of the mass killing of the Jews were filtering through.
(p 198, no citation) Gildea's remark about Vichy addresses how relief activists had been able to utilize the gap between the Germans and Vichy and also well disposed Vichy officials to extract Jewish children from holding camps. However, by late fall 1942, says Gildea, "Vichy authorities had clamped down much more severely on relief organizations that were trying to save Jews and, when the Germans invaded the Free Zone in November 1942, the screw tightened even more." (p 197) Key activists in the relief networks were arrested in January 1943.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri May 10, 2019 12:11 am

Just to say,
the timing of the knowledge has always been what mattered in our recent discussion. We have been through it all, i think, in previous topic. It is obvious that the certainty of the real fate of the Jewish deportees started imposing itself by early through mid 1943, because it was known for sure among the Allies. Of course, some on the wrong side of the track could still hope that it was all but war propaganda, by then, the truth has basically imposed itself, along with the German military setbacks that were starting to accumulate.
This is part of the explanation of why deportations and arrests became much more difficult. Brasillac discovered the truth - and not about gas chambers in camps, but about the finality of the deportation to Poland, during a "invited" trip in Poland to report about Katyn, and basically resigned form all duty afterward.
By 1943, even prominent Jews from the UGIF or the Consistoire were deported and never heard of.

Was wondering how many others of your books do mention this dubious "protest letter" of August 1942, though?

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 10, 2019 4:52 am

For sure, timing is critical, which is why I have noted it. Or are you under the impression that I'm trying to say that a group's having a good sense of what was happening in the East in early 1943 speaks to what they and others knew during the Vel d'Hiv roundups? Or that rhetoric of death and slavery in 1941 referred to gassings that didn't start until later?

But I'm not posting these tidbits to reply to earlier posts or make any specific argument about prior discussions; rather, I've been thinking beyond some of the earlier discussion and considering more broadly different aspects, such as Laval's culpability, perspectives of the foreign born, the mindsets of various resistance groups, and so on. I'm curious about what people in different networks and milieus were aware of and thinking about. So I am noting what I am coming across.

Also I wonder what more can be learned about Weill - what he had found out, specifically, and how he communicated it and to whom - during 1942, and the Swiss source which Adler says was behind the Consistoire's knowledge. Since I am away from home, I can't check Poznanski, Seibel or other books right now, but I will.

As to the Consistoire's letter, only Adler (as above) has mentioned it. The likelihood that the letter would be dealt with in books on the occupation in general, Paris during the war, French railway workers under Vichy, and the French resistance is slim, of course. But, putting together what's been posted in this thread previously with Adler, I don't see the grounds to doubt that the Consistoire had concluded by August 1942 that the Germans were annihilating deported Jews in the East.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 10, 2019 9:16 am

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 7:50 pm
The Communists (Adler himself was a foreign-born Jewish Communist active in the Communist resistance), based on similar information obtained "from a Pole who had returned to Paris from Poland," included news about the extermination in an underground publication in November 1942. (p 47) The Pole making the report in November 1942 was a Communist "a former member of the International Brigades, who had just returned from Krakow. He informed Solidarity's leadership [Solidarity was a PCF front group] that the Jews were being exterminated by gas" and mentioned a figure of 11,000 murders in Auschwitz that occurred during his time in Krakow. The French Communists "hesitated" before publishing the report from Krakow - and then didn't include a reference to murder by gas. The report appeared in Unzer Vort 50 (November 1942) - a copy of which is in the CDJC archives. (pp 202, 277)
Gildea also mentions this point, without the details. He says, based on a 1985 book by Solidarity activist Adam Rayski, that the network, using Unser Wort, had "revealed the existence of 'Drancy, the Paris Dachau,' in November 1941" and then, "gave the first news about gas chambers in October-November 1942." Rayski, a journalist who headed Solidarity's underground publishing, said in his postwar book that "Our aim was to inform and warn Jews of imminent danger. . . . Some kind of propaganda and above all information press was a sine qua non of the organization of resistance." Solidarity members had during the rafle of July 1942 leafleted and gone door to door to warn Jews to get out ahead of the July 1942 roundups. Another Solidarity activist, David Diamant, attributed the failure of the Germans and French police to meet their rafle quotas to this underground work. (pp 221-222)
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by landrew » Fri May 10, 2019 3:28 pm

Did it ever occur to some of you that some holocaust denial is a red herring, propagated by those who are content to receive the attention of notoriety, and not much more? Most of the original nazis are now dead.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 10, 2019 3:42 pm

Many things have occurred to me about HD, including that (Little Grey Rabbit's announced goal "to get people hopping mad") - but I fail to see the relevance of that thought to the recent discussion in this thread. In fact, deniers have been virtually absent from this board, with a handful of brief exceptions, for over 2 years . . .
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by landrew » Fri May 10, 2019 3:46 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 3:42 pm
Many things have occurred to me about HD, including that (Little Grey Rabbit's announced goal "to get people hopping mad") - but I fail to see the relevance of that thought to the recent discussion in this thread. In fact, deniers have been virtually absent from this board, with a handful of brief exceptions, for over 2 years . . .
So it seems that your goats have all been gotten.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 10, 2019 3:47 pm

I don't follow . . .
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Jeffk 1970 » Fri May 10, 2019 3:59 pm

landrew wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 3:28 pm
Did it ever occur to some of you that some holocaust denial is a red herring, propagated by those who are content to receive the attention of notoriety, and not much more? Most of the original nazis are now dead.
What does that have to do with this topic?

Maybe you should open a new thread if you want to discuss this. This has nothing to do with denial.
Question for Groening by a reporter:
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Groening:
“Nothing. They are hopelessly lost.”


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“(It is) vicious propaganda based on utter BS that has been discredited time and time again.”

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by landrew » Fri May 10, 2019 4:05 pm

Jeffk 1970 wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 3:59 pm
landrew wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 3:28 pm
Did it ever occur to some of you that some holocaust denial is a red herring, propagated by those who are content to receive the attention of notoriety, and not much more? Most of the original nazis are now dead.
What does that have to do with this topic?

Maybe you should open a new thread if you want to discuss this. This has nothing to do with denial.
This is fine. No more needs to be said.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri May 10, 2019 4:34 pm

Statmec:
I don't see the grounds to doubt that the Consistoire had concluded by August 1942 that the Germans were annihilating deported Jews in the East.
I do, but it is not what matters actually.
As discussed before, the problem is the source that is used to affirm that the Consistoire "had conclude by August 1942" is not acceptable and should not be taken in consideration by any historian who would have seen it. And we saw that it has been used nevertheless. Something i will never understand.

Your posts do a great job, though, in pointing out the potential divergences on how the "news/rumors" from the East were being understood and interpreted by the two main categories of Jews in France, the French and immigrants, but also depending on their political stance, traditional vs communists, etc.
So i keep reading them as they come. I am not participating because i sensed it was not really meant to be discussed.
Although i could probably comment on Adler's book which i read - but quite a long time ago - but i just do not have enough time right now to participate seriously.

Keep posting your discoveries and observations though. They are greatly appreciated.

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Sat May 11, 2019 5:38 am

Balsamo wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 4:34 pm
As discussed before, the problem is the source that is used to affirm that the Consistoire "had conclude by August 1942" is not acceptable and should not be taken in consideration by any historian who would have seen it.
The problem is that you keep writing about "the source" when historians (Poznanski, Adler, Friedländer, Rayski e.g.) write about more than one source.

I do appreciate that you're granting me permission to continue posting on various wartime organizations and networks :) still, of course, like anything else posted in this forum, discussion is part of the point and I didn't mean to convey a sense that my comments aren't for discussion.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Sat May 11, 2019 5:38 am
Balsamo wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 4:34 pm
As discussed before, the problem is the source that is used to affirm that the Consistoire "had conclude by August 1942" is not acceptable and should not be taken in consideration by any historian who would have seen it.
The problem is that you keep writing about "the source" when historians (Poznanski, Adler, Friedländer, Rayski e.g.) write about more than one source.

I do appreciate that you're granting me permission to continue posting on various wartime organizations and networks :) still, of course, like anything else posted in this forum, discussion is part of the point and I didn't mean to convey a sense that my comments aren't for discussion.
I meant of course the Source intending to prove that the Consistoire did not only know "for certain" about the fate of the deportees, but did also protest officially, warning that deportation meant murder, not that it was the only source alluding to the massacres of Jews in the East. This "protest letter" being the only thing that could be used to charge the Regime of complicity of Genocide for its role in the Vel d'hiv round up. This "protest letter" was also used as an evidence in court.

Now you wrote:
As to the Consistoire's letter, only Adler (as above) has mentioned it. The likelihood that the letter would be dealt with in books on the occupation in general, Paris during the war, French railway workers under Vichy, and the French resistance is slim, of course. But, putting together what's been posted in this thread previously with Adler, I don't see the grounds to doubt that the Consistoire had concluded by August 1942 that the Germans were annihilating deported Jews in the East.
Which is astonishing, especially since it has been shown in this thread, that there was no such thing as a letter. And, that the source itself, being what it is, should not be used isolately by Historians at all. So there is no way to affirm that the Consistoire knew by August 1942, quite simple.

If i remember, Adler is pretty tough on the French Jewish Elite (UGIF/Consistoire, etc), just like Rajsfus. So to affirm that the Consistoire knew allows to make the accusation that "They Knew, but chose to keep the information for themselves" which in my view is unfair and absurd. Not that the UGIF and some of the Elite do not deserve some critics, they do, but that the kept their knowledge about the extermination is absurd and even contradictory to their alleged behavior (and the hypothetical letters allegedly sent all over the place), which as you know i doubt about.
There is a choice to be made here:
1./ the members of the Consistoire knew that the deportation were sending the Jews to extermination - as they pretend - and one then have to belief that they tried to share and spread the information, as they pretend.
2./ The Consistoire knew nothing about systematic extermination, and that would explain why this protest had not any impact on anyone but themselves, and that the so called protest/letter has been written AFTER August 1942.

Somehow, it feels that Adler wants a bit of both options: They knew (as shown by this bloody undated piece of paper) but it had no impact at all because there was a conspiracy to keep the information secret.

I would add that had the extermination been discussed during a general assembly of the Consistoire in August 1942, the so called secret would have been impossible to keep.

As for the others sources, i think we have discussed them also. Quite a different topic, as it is not specific to France and to the Vel d'hiv round up. It was shown that even the most prominent Jews from the most important Jewish organizations still had doubt about the first revelations about exterminations by August 1942, but we are to believe that somehow the bloody Consistoire in France knew better than anyone else.

Now of course, information would keep coming, but the question is about its impact. I doubt that some obscure communist daily written in yiddish like "unzer Wort" ever had any while the Consistoire could have had some. By december 1942, it was spread by the Allies. And of course, reality would convince more and more people through 1943, but far from all people. This is why your posts are interesting.

PS: Stating that your posts are appreciated and that you should keep posting them should not be understood as granting permission to do so... ;) :lol:

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Mon May 13, 2019 4:50 am

Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
I meant of course the Source intending to prove that the Consistoire did not only know "for certain" about the fate of the deportees, but did also protest officially, warning that deportation meant murder, not that it was the only source alluding to the massacres of Jews in the East. This "protest letter" being the only thing that could be used to charge the Regime of complicity of Genocide for its role in the Vel d'hiv round up. This "protest letter" was also used as an evidence in court.
I really don't know what you're trying to say. The letter itself is not the only evidence about what information was received by the Consistoire or indeed about the letter and what Consistoire officials thought should be done with the information.
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
Now you wrote:
As to the Consistoire's letter, only Adler (as above) has mentioned it. The likelihood that the letter would be dealt with in books on the occupation in general, Paris during the war, French railway workers under Vichy, and the French resistance is slim, of course. But, putting together what's been posted in this thread previously with Adler, I don't see the grounds to doubt that the Consistoire had concluded by August 1942 that the Germans were annihilating deported Jews in the East.
Which is astonishing, especially since it has been shown in this thread, that there was no such thing as a letter. And, that the source itself, being what it is, should not be used isolately by Historians at all. So there is no way to affirm that the Consistoire knew by August 1942, quite simple.
Why do you "bracket out" other evidence? It has not been shown in this thread that "there was no such thing as a letter." You firmly believe that, but it isn't so.
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
If i remember, Adler is pretty tough on the French Jewish Elite (UGIF/Consistoire, etc), just like Rajsfus. So to affirm that the Consistoire knew allows to make the accusation that "They Knew, but chose to keep the information for themselves" which in my view is unfair and absurd. Not that the UGIF and some of the Elite do not deserve some critics, they do, but that the kept their knowledge about the extermination is absurd and even contradictory to their alleged behavior (and the hypothetical letters allegedly sent all over the place), which as you know i doubt about.
There is a choice to be made here:
1./ the members of the Consistoire knew that the deportation were sending the Jews to extermination - as they pretend - and one then have to belief that they tried to share and spread the information, as they pretend.
2./ The Consistoire knew nothing about systematic extermination, and that would explain why this protest had not any impact on anyone but themselves, and that the so called protest/letter has been written AFTER August 1942.
There are actually other options. First, that the Consistoire received information about the exterminations but chose not to spread it (IIRC this is what Friedländer argues). (Judgments about why are, of course, a different matter.)

Possibly related, and as I said above, "The Consistoire's knowledge of the extermination by August 1942 is central to Adler's evaluation of the Consistoire's wartime actions and behavior." But, as I also wrote, in discussing Broch's book, "She goes on to explain that throughout the war the Jewish actions remained obscure. . . . Jewish actions were 'assimilated' to wider persecutions in France, and 'the specificity of the Jewish persecution or even deportations never became understood . . .' Rumors, isolated scraps of information, and even resistance claims ’never equated to a full understanding of the extermination of the Jews.’" That is to say that information about the Jewish exterminations reached some people in France, more direct say than the BBC broadcasts, but that in the mix of all the information people were gaining, German actions were not yet understood as was later the case. This inability to gain a full understanding could also explain why some with the information were cautious about using it. (As an aside, this doesn't contradict what Adler shows, although his judgment is at times harsher, tempered by his observation that not many of the leaders and activists who got the information believed it.)
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
Somehow, it feels that Adler wants a bit of both options: They knew (as shown by this bloody undated piece of paper) but it had no impact at all because there was a conspiracy to keep the information secret.
As I noted, in my comment on Broch, there is a context in which the Consistoire's apparent silence should be considered.
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
As for the others sources, i think we have discussed them also.
We have and they undermine your points about the letter and support Nick's view that the CDJC source is likely a "copy for the file, whether the letter was sent or not would really depend on looking in Vichy government files."
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
Quite a different topic, as it is not specific to France and to the Vel d'hiv round up. It was shown that even the most prominent Jews from the most important Jewish organizations still had doubt about the first revelations about exterminations by August 1942, but we are to believe that somehow the bloody Consistoire in France knew better than anyone else.
No one has argued this. I plead guilty to reporting Adler's judgment, which is mixed and which differs to how you characterize it, but reporting about isn't agreeing with. OTOH Adler mentioned that the information received by the Consistoire came through Swiss sources, which I didn't know. Nor did I know about what Weill had learned, which Gildea also references.
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
Now of course, information would keep coming, but the question is about its impact. I doubt that some obscure communist daily written in yiddish like "unzer Wort" ever had any while the Consistoire could have had some. By december 1942, it was spread by the Allies.
Summer 1942 by the BBC (extermination of 700,000 Polish Jews; in the HC thing on "steam," I wrote at length about dissemination of information from Poland during 1942). But, as to Unzer Wort, that is actually the point I've been making here, that the scraps of information weren't enough to cause a significant number of people to form a complete enough picture of what was happening in the East. Nonetheless bits of information did reach some people and, based on the evidence, these included officials of the Consistoire who struggled with what to make of and what do with what they’d learned.

I'm presenting the evidence (including Lichtheim's cable) about who understood what as ambiguous and including different sources regarding the Consistoire whereas you seem to me to be, as a reflex and with no discernible foundation, dismissing as later (postwar?) inventions the versions of "the letter" found in both the CDJC and Consistoire archives.
Balsamo wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:06 pm
PS: Stating that your posts are appreciated and that you should keep posting them should not be understood as granting permission to do so... ;) :lol:
Ah, sorry, I will stop then. Maybe.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm

Statmec:
“I really don't know what you're trying to say. The letter itself is not the only evidence about what information was received by the Consistoire or indeed about the letter and what Consistoire officials thought should be done with the information.”
Again, you are mixing two different issues:
- YOU ARE RIGHT, the letter is not about evidencing the information the Consistoire and its members might have had access to.

- IT IS NEVERTHELESS the only proof I am aware of that the information of the systematic extermination awaiting the deportees not only reached but also convinced the members of the Consistoire by August 42 and that it indeed had an impact on what “should be done” about it.
Why do you "bracket out" other evidence? It has not been shown in this thread that "there was no such thing as a letter." You firmly believe that, but it isn't so.
So you did find the letter, or even a trace of this letter somewhere?

As far as I know the reference CCXIII-15 sends back to this “undated piece of paper”.

Now a belief is an acceptance that something exists, even without having seen it. Which is exactly your position, and the one of those using this undated document. You assume that a letter was sent, although the only reference to support it is not even a letter, at best a draft of an undated protest.

The other sources that might be used are the minutes of the general assembly of the Consistoire held the 23 and 24th of August 1942. Those minutes DO NOT mention any letter!

The meeting of the 23rd concludes that a Protest should be written. And that the protest should be brought to Laval.

On the 24th, members of the delegation that should meet Laval are designated. Mister Jacques Meyer proposed that this “protest” should be spread as much as possible. The proposition is accepted by the Assembly and the president (Adolphe Caen) declared that this protest will be published in 50 copies that would be sent to all the regional branches of the Consistoire, to Rabbis, to the Marechal, to the papal nuncio, to the president of the Red cross, to the ministers, the journalists, basically to the whole world.

The text of the protest is discussed in the Afternoon, and is ready the next morning, 25th of August 1942.

NO LETTER! And while one should be flood with copies of this protest, allegedly sent all over the place, we are still sent back to the undated paper in CCXIII-15, or the copies and transcript of it.

I do not believe that there is no letter, there are just no letter to be found.
You on the contrary seems to give faith to the idea that a not to be found letter has been sent somehow...makes me wonder....as this is a belief that you cannot materialistically support.

Stat Mec:
“There are actually other options. First, that the Consistoire received information about the exterminations but chose not to spread it (IIRC this is what Friedländer argues). (Judgments about why are, of course, a different matter.)”
Except that this is also an unsupported speculation. Based on the available source, if one chose to consider them as source of course, the Consistoire did know and did decide to spread the news.
If one assumes that the members of the Consistoire knew about the systematic murder of the deportees, which is basically based on this protest and on the minutes above, one cannot just take one bit and speculate the rest without founding the idea that they might have chosen to remains silent on specific source.

This idea is contradicted by the minutes of the general assembly of the consistoire I just summarized! What are the materials/sources on which the assumption that its members chose not to disclose the information is based?

Statmec:
“in discussing Broch's book, "She goes on to explain that throughout the war the Jewish actions remained obscure. . . . Jewish actions were 'assimilated' to wider persecutions in France, and 'the specificity of the Jewish persecution or even deportations never became understood . . .”
Very well, but then what to do with the Consistoire’s protest? The protest does not leave room for doubts, no obscurity transpires from this text.
“As I noted, in my comment on Broch, there is a context in which the Consistoire's apparent silence should be considered.”
Do you start seeing the problem, here? It is not supposed to be a “apparent silence” as the Consistoire declared it decided to spread the information of the systematic and methodological extermination of the Jews all over the place. If one believes the Consistoire and its members, there are no apparent silence...

Statmec:
“We have and they undermine your points about the letter and support Nick's view that the CDJC source is likely a "copy for the file, whether the letter was sent or not would really depend on looking in Vichy government files."
:lol:
How so?

Nick, as far as I remember, proposed a hypothesis that CCXIII-15 was a “copy for the file”, but recognized that it was not the copy of a letter. Of course, I agree that if such one copy of this protest would be found in Vichy government files – note that one should also find a copy within the files of the Vatican, the Red cross, the various Consistory regional branches, various media, the French catholic church, etc – then yes, I would be proven wrong.

But as far as I know, it has not been the case yet. And I would consider that had it been such a copy it would have appeared by now, don’t you think? Of course, everything is possible, and some copy might appear in the future, but until then…No letter/protest bearing a date and a signature has been found. Therefore, it is impossible to know for sure that the members of the Consistoire believed in the information that were arriving from Poland and the East by August 1942.

That is the issue, actually. It is not that no information were available, of course, but how these information was received, believed and affected the behavior of those institutions of all kind?
This is the distinction i am trying to make: To know something is to believe it, not to be aware of a rumor.

No doubt at least some members of the Consistoire had read about the rumors of mass killing in Poland and in the East, but that is not the same as to state that "they knew what was going to happen to the deportees from France".

Let’s imaging that a website like sputnik publishes information that people are executed systematically at GITMO, that would be “available information”, but what would matter would still be its impact on the American people, the US Institutions, etc. Depending on how widely this “information” is believed, its penetration to use another word, the information would influence the behavior of minor and major actors…or not (if no one takes the information seriously).

And this is the field - that is the real impact of the information - where the sources are getting scarce and/or more elusive when it comes to timing,... except for this Protest!

You were searching for more information about Joseph Weill. I will write about on the following post.

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Wed May 15, 2019 11:34 pm

The case of doctor Weill is quite interesting.
Having read what has been written about him as well as the major part of his autobiography through google book (so a couple of pages are lost) (without taking not, but I well read it again), there is no real date on when he became aware of the extermination finality of the deportation, but there is no doubt he was, the question is when.

One interesting aspect of this admirable personality is, as described by his son, his fundamental pessimism. Born German in the Alsace, he spoke a perfect German, and had read “Mein Kampf” as soon as it was published, and it had a great influence on him. He had no illusion on what would happen to the Jews in case they would fall under Hitler’s power. And therefore was always prepared for the worst.

Indeed his famous for his work at the OSE – which became known in French as “Oeuvres de Secours aux Enfants” – what I did not know though is that the OSE was originally an organization created in Russia, in 1912. The initials OSE stands for Russian words that translate to Association of Sanitary Protection of the Jews. This organization, created to address the misery of the Russian Jews, soon spread internationally in the regions where Jews were suffering, as well as office in the Americas for financial support. Their center was Berlin in the 1920’s but it then moved to Paris in 1933.

I am mentioning this as this organization might have been a vector of the information and therefore reached Weill beforehand, the members of the Central Committee of the OSE being Russian or Polish immigrants.

Still he remains unclear when it comes to how/when he knew about the extermination. In his autobiography he quotes a report he prepared after the Round-up intended to his contact in Portugal and Switzerland. He would personally report the information to Switzerland to his friends.
Here is his description of what he knew:
« Nous avons appris aussi de nos amis des Renseignements le destin cruel qui guette les déportés dans les nouveaux camps. Tortures, travaux forcés, exécutions en masse, la famine et la maladie, pendaisons, supplices, étouffements dans des camions hermétiquement étanches, les moteurs en marche, coups sanglants, une existence inhumaine, des humiliations sans limite attendent nos frères infortunés.
Which google translated gives…{!#%@} actually. So here is mine:
“We also learned from our friends in the Intelligence Services the cruel destiny that was awaiting the deportees in the new camps: Tortures, slave labor, mass executions, famine and diseases, hangings, others sufferings, suffocation in hermetically sealed trucks while the motors are running, beatings, an inhumane existence, endless humiliation are what await our unfortunate brothers”
He adds:
“The pen refuses to describe those horrible details. I will communicate them orally.”
At an unknown date, Weill would meet in Switzerland Saly Maier from the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. Maier would then call in Weill presence Joë Schwarz from the same Joint in Lisbon, Portugal. He would then ask Weill to make a more detailed report, based on the information he could guarantee authentic, especially from Poland. Schwarz told him he had heard about such rumors in Washington, but never with such horrible details.

Unfortunately, all the pages mentioning the Consistoire in Weill’s book are not available on google. It is a pity because the book itself will be hard to get, I will have to buy it through Europe and get it sent to me here. That is going to take some times. But from what I read, it kind of worth it.

The interesting aspect here is the influence of Weill’s personality, described by his sons as fundamentally pessimistic, expecting the worse since having read Mein Kampf. Ironically, one could say that he “Knew before learning “about the extermination. Although not a communist at all, he belongs, just like the communist like Adam Rayski to those who never had any doubt about the veracity of the information leaking from Poland and Russia.

With the exception of his obedience to the French law – Weill would comply with any legal requisite imposed by the Vichy law – he gives me the sentiment to be the exact opposite of someone like Hellbronner, president of the Consistoire. Hellbronner still considered himself a friend of Petain by that time, Weill called the regime the “Anti-France”, Weill dedicated every hour of the day to the cause of saving Jews, while Hellbronner would not cancel his vacation even though one should believe that he knew that the deportations were leading thousands of Jews to certain extermination.

Information transited through the neutral states – Switzerland and Sweden – brought at high risk by people from Poland, mainly, but I would include people like Weill, which would finally led to the Allies declaration of December 42, while the so called 50 copies of this letter/protest by the Consistoire seem to have reach nothing else that the conscience of its members.

More on this later... ;)

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Thu May 16, 2019 12:59 am

Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
- IT IS NEVERTHELESS the only proof I am aware of that the information of the systematic extermination awaiting the deportees not only reached but also convinced the members of the Consistoire by August 42 and that it indeed had an impact on what “should be done” about it.
Not what the historians I've mentioned say. They mention discussion of the protest, Adler cites Weill presumably on how the information reached the Consistoire, Friedländer says that a version of the "protest letter" not mentioning extermination or the role of Vichy police was sent, Poznanski cites a number of streams of information reaching groups in France as well as confirmation that Pétain had studied the extermination "dossier" sent in earlier in the month by the Consistoire (again citing AIU:CC, in this instance notes of Robert Kiefe).
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
So you did find the letter, or even a trace of this letter somewhere?
Yes, minus the semantics.

But I don't understand your question, as we've been discussing versions of a protest, or letter, in different archives. Semantics, I sigh. Also, forgetting "poof," and thinking about evidence, there is evidence beyond the letter about what officials of the Consistoire knew, in summer 1942 and in fall 1942.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
As far as I know the reference CCXIII-15 sends back to this “undated piece of paper”.
There's also a citation, as noted a number of times, to the Central Consistory archives (AIU:CC).
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Now a belief is an acceptance that something exists, even without having seen it. Which is exactly your position, and the one of those using this undated document. You assume that a letter was sent, although the only reference to support it is not even a letter, at best a draft of an undated protest.
How do you arrive at any of this? Especially when I wrote the opposite.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
The other sources that might be used are the minutes of the general assembly of the Consistoire held the 23 and 24th of August 1942. Those minutes DO NOT mention any letter!
According to Rayski the protest was discussed and "ratified" at a meeting on 20 August 1942. I don't know if this is correct. Or even if there was a meeting on 20 August. . . .
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
The meeting of the 23rd concludes that a Protest should be written. And that the protest should be brought to Laval.

On the 24th, members of the delegation that should meet Laval are designated. Mister Jacques Meyer proposed that this “protest” should be spread as much as possible. The proposition is accepted by the Assembly and the president (Adolphe Caen) declared that this protest will be published in 50 copies that would be sent to all the regional branches of the Consistoire, to Rabbis, to the Marechal, to the papal nuncio, to the president of the Red cross, to the ministers, the journalists, basically to the whole world.

The text of the protest is discussed in the Afternoon, and is ready the next morning, 25th of August 1942.

NO LETTER! And while one should be flood with copies of this protest, allegedly sent all over the place, we are still sent back to the undated paper in CCXIII-15, or the copies and transcript of it.
A written protest, however. According to Poznanski also found in AIU:CC. Semantics, phew.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
You on the contrary seems to give faith to the idea that a not to be found letter has been sent somehow...makes me wonder....as this is a belief that you cannot materialistically support.
Again, I specifically wrote something different to what you believe I have been saying.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Stat Mec:
“There are actually other options. First, that the Consistoire received information about the exterminations but chose not to spread it (IIRC this is what Friedländer argues). (Judgments about why are, of course, a different matter.)”
Except that this is also an unsupported speculation.
Have you read Poznanski's book?
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Statmec:
“in discussing Broch's book, "She goes on to explain that throughout the war the Jewish actions remained obscure. . . . Jewish actions were 'assimilated' to wider persecutions in France, and 'the specificity of the Jewish persecution or even deportations never became understood . . .”
Very well, but then what to do with the Consistoire’s protest? The protest does not leave room for doubts, no obscurity transpires from this text.
Clearly I disagree, as I've explained.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Do you start seeing the problem, here? It is not supposed to be a “apparent silence” as the Consistoire declared it decided to spread the information of the systematic and methodological extermination of the Jews all over the place. If one believes the Consistoire and its members, there are no apparent silence...
This will be the first episode in the study of history for which there are contradictory pieces of evidence, threads that break off, scraps of information needing interpretation and leading to differing views . . .
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Statmec:
“We have and they undermine your points about the letter and support Nick's view that the CDJC source is likely a "copy for the file, whether the letter was sent or not would really depend on looking in Vichy government files."
:lol:
How so?
As I've described.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
Nick, as far as I remember, proposed a hypothesis that CCXIII-15 was a “copy for the file”, but recognized that it was not the copy of a letter. Of course, I agree that if such one copy of this protest would be found in Vichy government files – note that one should also find a copy within the files of the Vatican, the Red cross, the various Consistory regional branches, various media, the French catholic church, etc – then yes, I would be proven wrong.
What do you make of the copy of the "something" in the Consistoire archives? Of what Poznanski says on p 290?
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
But as far as I know, it has not been the case yet. And I would consider that had it been such a copy it would have appeared by now, don’t you think? Of course, everything is possible, and some copy might appear in the future, but until then…No letter/protest bearing a date and a signature has been found. Therefore, it is impossible to know for sure that the members of the Consistoire believed in the information that were arriving from Poland and the East by August 1942.
It's likely that members of the Consistoire were conflicted and uncertain, or fearful, given the situation and context I've described already. The advantage of Poznanski's discussion over Adler's is that she hits hard how the days 23-25 August 1942 were a point in a process, during which more information was coming in, and understanding was growing.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
That is the issue, actually. It is not that no information were available, of course, but how these information was received, believed and affected the behavior of those institutions of all kind?
This is the distinction i am trying to make: To know something is to believe it, not to be aware of a rumor.
Did you not read my posts? You're quoting from them and yet . . .

I am not trying to say that I have researched this or that I have any authority on it - rather that in advancing your argument you've made claims that I don't think are supportable and that your arguments fail to explain what's presented by various historians and aren't convincing on the idea of a forgery of some sort as against what I’ve read about summer and fall 1942.
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:27 pm
No doubt at least some members of the Consistoire had read about the rumors of mass killing in Poland and in the East, but that is not the same as to state that "they knew what was going to happen to the deportees from France".
But that - that some officials read something - is hardly what Adler and Poznanski describe.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Thu May 16, 2019 9:35 am

Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:34 pm
The case of doctor Weill is quite interesting. . . .
According to Adler, Weill gave a deposition on 27 June 1974, found here: CDJC, DXLXI-37. I'd imagine that in that deposition Weill might explain some of what's not clear otherwise - maybe not, but that's one place I'd look.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Thu May 16, 2019 10:53 pm

Statmec:
Not what the historians I've mentioned say. They mention discussion of the protest, Adler cites Weill presumably on how the information reached the Consistoire, Friedländer says that a version of the "protest letter" not mentioning extermination or the role of Vichy police was sent, Poznanski cites a number of streams of information reaching groups in France as well as confirmation that Pétain had studied the extermination "dossier" sent in earlier in the month by the Consistoire (again citing AIU:CC, in this instance notes of Robert Kiefe).
The question was not if some of the information had reached members of the Consistoire or not, again, but about the impact it had on its members. I cannot check on what Friedlander bases his two versions of the letters, as for the “dossier” transmitted to Petain, I would love to have a look on it.

Statmec:
There's also a citation, as noted a number of times, to the Consistoire archives.
In CCXIII-15, CC stands for Consistoire Central.

Statmec:
How do you arrive at any of this? Especially when I wrote the opposite.
Well, you wrote that the fact that there was no letter had been sent to Petain on the 25th was only a belief of mine. Sorry but until I am shown a letter, it is not a matter of belief.

Statmec:
According to Rayski the protest was discussed and "ratified" at a meeting on 20 August 1942. I don't know if this is correct.
He is wrong, which is not unusual on his part.

Statmec:
A written protest, however. According to Poznanski also found in AIU:CC. Semantics, phew.
Poznanski refers to the same bloody piece of paper.
CC still stands for Consistoire Central, and I guess that AIU which stands for "Alliance Israelite Universelle" was/could have been the place where the Consistoire Archives were located back then. Poznanski book is not recent to say the least. She also participate to “Qui savait Quoi?” by Rayski in 1987, iirc.
This would need confirmation, but i think the archives were reorganized after the fusion between the CDJC (Centre de Documentation Juive Contemporaine) and the Memorial de la Shoah in 1997. The new organization which now regroups all the archives moved to a new building in 2005.

PS: What the hell you mean by Semantic phew??
Have you read Poznanski's book?
Of course, although a long time ago. Was happy to find that there was a google book version bearing the interesting pages. Another use of the same source this time she said that “for the first time, the Consistory gave wide publicity to its protest” (lol) While others would insist that it kept this protest from the public.
What do you make of the copy of the "something" in the Consistoire archives? Of what Poznanski says on p 290?
Explained above. Same archive, and same document, and well an additional interpretation of it role.

Regarding the role of Hellbronner personal secretary, Robert Kiefe, the main sources seems to be his personal notes, also in the CC archives, so I will see if I can have a look on them. I do not know what contained the "Dossier" transmitted by him to Petain. But Rayski description of him is less favorable - to say the least - than Poznanski's.
Did you not read my posts? You're quoting from them and yet . . .
I do my best but it is not always easy to distinguish what is your stance and what are those of the authors you quote who hold contrary points of view.

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Thu May 16, 2019 11:04 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 9:35 am
Balsamo wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 11:34 pm
The case of doctor Weill is quite interesting. . . .
According to Adler, Weill gave a deposition on 27 June 1974, found here: CDJC, DXLXI-37. I'd imagine that in that deposition Weill might explain some of what's not clear otherwise - maybe not, but that's one place I'd look.
So the memorial de la Shoah must have it. Still waiting for my membership.

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 17, 2019 9:16 am

As to Friedländer, we discussed his view that there were two drafts upthread. I don't know more than what I shared at the time: he cites a July 28th "draft" as well as Scharzfuchs’ book. You wrote at that time that there were not two letters but only one, where now you write that there’s no such thing as a letter at all: "I dare to suggest that there had never been two versions, but one, the one who is not alluding to extermination, who most probably has been sent to Petain and Laval . . .”
Balsamo wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:53 pm
Well, you wrote that the fact that there was no letter had been sent to Petain on the 25th was only a belief of mine. Sorry but until I am shown a letter, it is not a matter of belief.
And that is not what I wrote. I wrote, "It has not been shown in this thread that 'there was no such thing as a letter.'" Quoting Nick Terry, I said also that the letter may or may not have been sent. Saying that the document exists is not the same as saying it was sent or to whom, etc.
Balsamo wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:53 pm
Of course, although a long time ago. Was happy to find that there was a google book version bearing the interesting pages. Another use of the same source this time she said that “for the first time, the Consistory gave wide publicity to its protest” (lol) While others would insist that it kept this protest from the public.
You will notice that for “wide publicity” she cites, as I believe I had already pointed out upthread, the meeting of the Consistoire on 23 August, interpreting the intent expressed at that meeting before the 25th as having been realized later. Her interpretation that “wide publicity” was given may not be right.
Balsamo wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:53 pm
I do my best but it is not always easy to distinguish what is your stance and what are those of the authors you quote who hold contrary points of view.
Since I identify what are my views, it shouldn't be that hard. When, for example, I write, "We have and they undermine your points about the letter and support Nick's view that the CDJC source is likely a 'copy for the file, whether the letter was sent or not would really depend on looking in Vichy government files'," I think it is clear that I am agreeing with Nick, and so on. Vice versa, when I summarize what someone else wrote without comment, I'm not giving my view. What I "drop" in here may be problematic for my views, might support them, or might be something I don't have an opinion on.

I don't have the time or sources to keep going on this issue. Faurisson raised all this in 1986, in one of his typical bits of feigned intellectual pain, equating incomplete information with malevolence, and, since he didn’t like the implications of what was in the archives, seeking to find a forgery from the outset. He said at the time that the archive copy was an "alleged duplicate" dated 25 August 1942. But despite the storied history of this idea, there's some evidence, other than the protest/letter itself, that members of the Consistoire, like others, were hearing and digesting “things.” Like 3 years ago, I'm not in a position to take the discussion further. Besides, pretty aware of the pitfalls of referring to the protest again, I had prefaced my notes on recent reading by saying, "I hesitate to do this but what the heck . . ." That's because I really did want to set down some points from the reading about what was being learned, by whom and when, and how it was being processed, not to reopen a discussion about this one item that we previously said we couldn't resolve for lack of information. That’s why I can’t really say more but remain unconvinced.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri May 17, 2019 7:28 pm

Statmec:
As to Friedländer, we discussed his view that there were two drafts upthread. I don't know more than what I shared at the time: he cites a July 28th "draft" as well as Scharzfuchs’ book. You wrote at that time that there were not two letters but only one, where now you write that there’s no such thing as a letter at all: "I dare to suggest that there had never been two versions, but one, the one who is not alluding to extermination, who most probably has been sent to Petain and Laval . . .”
That was before i finally found the original in the memorial de la shoah archives. And it turned out that it was no letter.
I had no reason to doubt all the historians who wrote about a letter before.
My main original issue with this "letter" which allegedly contained information about extermination as the final destination of the deportation was that it had no impact at all. had this "letter" been sent to the people that some historians pretend it was sent to, it would have created at least a wave of reactions, but here nothing, nada. After supposedly having sent this crucial information, the Consistoire Central just went back to its boring normal occupation, without even mentioning the term extermination ever after. Hence my suspicion about its content.

Then we discovered that there had just been no letter at all, but a protest, etc...
And that is not what I wrote. I wrote, "It has not been shown in this thread that 'there was no such thing as a letter.'" Quoting Nick Terry, I said also that the letter may or may not have been sent. Saying that the document exists is not the same as saying it was sent or to whom, etc.
Actually you wrote:
It has not been shown in this thread that "there was no such thing as a letter." You firmly believe that, but it isn't so.
That i somehow believe that there was no such thing as a letter, when no one can come up with a letter!!
Now you do think that this thread has shown that there is somewhere a letter, even if it has not be sent (?? strange thing for a letter as it is basically its "raison d'etre",) and that no one can come up with a copy of it.
So yes, the question stands, which position is related to "Belief"?
Since I identify what are my views, it shouldn't be that hard. When, for example, I write, "We have and they undermine your points about the letter and support Nick's view that the CDJC source is likely a 'copy for the file, whether the letter was sent or not would really depend on looking in Vichy government files'," I think it is clear that I am agreeing with Nick, and so on.
Please recall me how you undermine my points about the letter, since you do not have any letter to show me?
Nicks proposed an hypothesis, and i agreed that should one find such letter from the consistoire in the government archives, i would be wrong. Did anyone find such a letter?
I may be absolutely stupid but on what the hell do you base you assertion that there was a letter written to Petain by the CC in August 1942 (sent or not)???? EDIT
You might agree with Nick hypothesis, of course, but it would still be an HYPO-thesis, and not a explanations or thesis of any sort.
I don't have the time or sources to keep going on this issue. Faurisson raised all this in 1986, in one of his typical bits of feigned intellectual pain, equating incomplete information with malevolence, and, since he didn’t like the implications of what was in the archives, seeking to find a forgery from the outset. He said at the time that the archive copy was an "alleged duplicate" dated 25 August 1942. But despite the storied history of this idea, there's some evidence, other than the protest/letter itself, that members of the Consistoire, like others, were hearing and digesting “things.” Like 3 years ago, I'm not in a position to take the discussion further. Besides, pretty aware of the pitfalls of referring to the protest again, I had prefaced my notes on recent reading by saying, "I hesitate to do this but what the heck . . ." That's because I really did want to set down some points from the reading about what was being learned, by whom and when, and how it was being processed, not to reopen a discussion about this one item that we previously said we couldn't resolve for lack of information. That’s why I can’t really say more but remain unconvinced.
Why the hell you are coming with Faurisson now????

Of course, the whole bloody world was "hearing and digesting things" and that includes of course the members of the Consistoire Central. That has never been the issue.
As a matter of fact, i used to focus a lot about those information and above all about their impact, their receptions, who believed those news from Poland, Germany and Russia mostly, their effects on the various actors, and i do consider those fields as incomplete.
So you should not hesitate at all to post whatever might shed some lights on these questions.
The same way i should not hesitate to point some of the dark points. And when it comes to the history of France under the Vichy regime, this - given its widely use by historians, even today - bloody protest/letter is an important issue.

I noticed you quite dodge the fact that there was still only one archive for it.

Any historian knows or should know that when a same single source can be used to prove contrary thesis, they may be a problem with the source. And i will show in my next post, this issue is essential in France, because it has now, political and judicial implication.
And yes, if legit historians are not allowed to address the issue, then, there will be other Faurisson who will feel free to challenge a whole profession once again.
I really do fear that History as a profession as well as a science (edit) faces grave danger today. The history of Vichy is far from being complete, in any sense of the term, and it is shocking to see the pressure that are put on those like Alain Michel, Brayard, and others for trying to dig more further into it, not only within France where they are boycotted by the media and even some universities, but by the refusal to even translate those works.

But you will maybe understand one of the aspect of my concern would you agreed to read my next post.
Last edited by Balsamo on Fri May 17, 2019 8:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri May 17, 2019 7:48 pm

I came across a very interesting article that might explain some aspects of what we are discussing. It is an article that was published in 1997 in an important magazine called “L’express”. The article describes the cases of conscience – cannot find a better word – of the French Justice in the prosecution of Nazi criminals and French collaborators. Those cases were the trial of Klaus Barbie (1985), of Bourquet (1991) and Paul Touvier (1994) and Maurice Papon (1998) for crimes against Humanity.

One of the issue that the French Justice faced was precisely the UN definition of “crime against humanity” and the risks posed by some French post war policies – Cameroun, Madagascar, Algeria – that could backslash. So in 1985, it was decided that in order to be prosecuted in France, a crime against humanity must have been committed by a State “practicing a policy of ideological hegemony”. That would of course include fascist regimes or communist dictatorships, but not a democracy even in the case it would have been responsible for 100.000 deaths. This precaution was enough to allow the trial of Klaus Barbie, and prevented the famous lawyer Verges to point out eventual crimes committed by the French republic.

One of the consequences of this decision was that it disrupted the first trial of Paul Touvier (1992), since Vichy France could not be considered as a State practicing ideological hegemony. Hence the court was forced to conclude that it could not judge Paul Touvier, decision that created a great scandal.

So another twist had to be improvised. It was then decided that the prosecution of a crime against humanity would be possible if “ the crime has been committed by or in complicity with a European Axis country (Germany or Italy)”…and the essential part here is the notion of complicity.

So in order to be able to actually find someone like Paul Touvier guilty of crimes against humanity, the French judges were forced to “invent history”, as they had to prove that Paul Touvier – who was a member of the French milice – committed his crime on a personnel level under direct orders of the Germans. Had he obeyed instruction from Vichy and its regime, he could not have been indicted.

Then of course, came a much more embarrassing case: the one of Maurice Papon who was secretary general of the Prefect of Gironde in France, accused to be responsible of the deportation of 1690 Jews from the city of Bordeaux. Again, he could not be indicted or sentenced, if he could prove that he followed orders from his Prefect, and the Vichy government. (Yes, actually he could prove it and should therefore not have been found guilty under the current French jurisprudence). So again, in order to escape the trap, the Court had to establish a direct and personal link between Papon and the Nazis.

Here I will quote the article:
“To make this demonstration, the Judges decided that Maurice Papon, "as soon as he took office", in 1942, had "acquired the conviction" that the deported Jews were sent to death, an assertion historically not serious.”
That was written in 1997.
A historical assertion that from then on HAD to be serious. And if Papon knew, then everyone would have known.

But then there was also the first indictment of Bousquet, in 1991, whose trial was stopped by his assassination, but the requisite was the same back then. The knowledge of the extermination finality of the deportation had to become an historical fact in order to prosecute those surviving criminals in a way that would preserve the French State and Nation.

Because, there will never be such a thing as a Vichy trial at least judicially, as it was the whole point on those redefinitions of what constitutes a crime against humanity in the French law, the last act was the political recognition of the role of Vichy in the Final Solution which actually is not even at stake, but which become the "Knowingly" role of the Vichy in the Final Solution.
Case closed!
Even though, according to Alain Michel, there are still about 2000 boxes of archives that have never been opened, even less studied.
But sincerely, who would dare in such a context?

It does not matter if those historians are Jews, even their scholar background do not matter, they are accused to rehabilitate Petain, and having just watch Alain Michel conference on youtube, there was a screem in the audience who said to him to join Faurisson! Just a coincidence of course.
To say that to a Rabbi with a Phd in History who worked for 30 years at Yad Vashem, and lives in Israel, shows that there are no limits anymore.

Sources:
http://www.lexpress.fr/informations/on- ... 20630.html

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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Statistical Mechanic » Fri May 17, 2019 8:21 pm

Balsamo, no means no.
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Re: France '42-'44: La Grande Rafle & beyond

Post by Balsamo » Fri May 17, 2019 11:40 pm

Statistical Mechanic wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 8:21 pm
Balsamo, no means no.
Whatever that means...but then ok.

Thanks for your authorization to keep posting.

Just came across - by the same kind of coincidence - of another example of how historical narrative can be influenced, by reading Poznanski about a episode in which Joseph Weill was involved - that is part of it - and which feels like having been censored by the scholar.

She relates page 283 the saving of hundreds of children essentially through the effort of Abbot Glasberg and Jean-Marie Soutou, from the Christian Friendship organization. Of course, she is correct when she describes the how those gentlemen used the loopholes and confusion within the administration to take those teens and children from the deportation list. But she explains that what actually saved the children from the anger of the Prefect Angeli was that he could not locate the children who escaped through EIF camps, and because the Cardinal Gerlier and Father Challet resisted pressure from the prefect.

However, as said, Weill was part of this action, and his rendition is a little bit different. Actually, the Prefect Angeli (?) called Weill and the others, he held for responsible for the hoax, threatening to issue arrest warrants against every people who participated in the scam, that they would be surrendered to the Germans, unless the children were returned within 24 hours.

From there, the team split: The first one would evacuate the children as soon as possible and spread them among friendly families, while Weill and a friend, Yves Lyon, former highly decorated major in the Army, Veteran of Verdun, to rush to…Vichy and to the ministry of the interior. There, although most of Weill’s friends were gone from duty, and therefore were not really well received, Weill and Lyon finally met a member of the minister’s Cabinet called Pommaret who listen with attention to the story. .

According to Weill, Pommaret's indignation reached a peak when he heard about the determination of the Prefect to throw the children into the next transport. “We are still in France” he shouted and led Lyon and Weill to his superior the director of the Cabinet, and visited all the services with both of them to make sure that nothing would interfere with the phone communication ordering the Prefect to let it go. Weill recalls that it was 3.30 pm, half an hour before the deadline.

Too late to stop the police from going to the EIF center where the children had been brought before. The children were gone, but people gathered there to protest which made the police work difficult. The children were gone, the angry prefect tried to threat the Cardinal Gerlier who stood strong, while father Challet was sentenced to three months of house arrest.

Because of the orders from the ministry of the interior at Vichy, none of the other people who took part to this operation were prosecuted in any way.

Both rendition are basically similar, although Weill provides more details, but in the case of Poznanski, one can wonder why the Weill's and Lyon trip to Vichy and the subsequent intervention of the ministry of the interior in their favor is not even mentioned.
Probably because her thesis is that the only ones who participate in saving some Jews were low-ranking officer who might have felt some pity and compassion at some point, but never from politicians above.
Of course i forgot to mention that the 100 children saved were evacuated in police trucks that had been provided to the Christian Friendship org.

One cannot suspect Joseph Weill to wanting to rehabilitate the Vichy Regime, or the Anti-France as he called it, but his description just outlines the complexity of what this bloody regime was. Weill's also gained access to the camp of Gurs, one the concentration camps, thanks to a vague and phony "lettre de mission" (mission letter?) that one of the Prefects agreed to sign him. While others, like the one Poznanski calls Angeli, was the perfect type of fascist antisemite.

Another way to influence has been mentioned by Alain Michel in his conference. There is no accusation that it was voluntary, but it is the use of the infamous call of Laval asking the German the permission not to break up the families, and therefore to deport the children along with their families. This official demand was made on the 4th of July 1942, before the round-up in the non occupied zone even started. This demand only concerned the families that were to be arrested in the so called Free zone and deported to the occupied zone.
Receiving this demand, Dannecker reported to Berlin and asked if it would be possible to also include the children in the transport to the east, as the official evacuation order only concerned people between 16 and 45 years old. He won't get any instruction before the 20th of July, and even then, the decision was made that the transport of children would be organized later in August - under the "funny" pretext that Germany needed time to organize their reception to make sure they will be comfortably received. (official BS).

In A. Wieviorka and M. Laffitte, « A l’intérieur du camp de Drancy », published in 2012, page 160, it is how this affair is presented:
"Dès le 20 juillet, Eichmann et son officier de transports Franz Novack annoncent par téléphone à Dannecker la préparation des prochains « transports d’enfants » vers Auschwitz. Ils ont accédé à la demande de Laval qui leur avait été transmise par ce même Dannecker le 6 juillet : « Le président Laval a proposé, lors de la déportation des familles juives de zone occupée, d’y comprendre également des enfants âgés de moins de 16 ans. La question des enfants juifs restant en zone occupée ne l’intéresse pas."
My translation:
"As soon as the 20th of July 1942, Eichmann and his "transport" officer Franz Novac announce by phone to Dannecker to prepare the next transport of children to Auschwitz. They have agreed to Laval's request which the same Dannecker transmitted to them on the 6 of July(here using quote) " President Laval has proposed that during the deportation of Jewish families from the occupied zone, the children under 16 years old to be included. The question of the children in the occupied zone is not of his business"
The first reaction reading such a rendition is that the {!#%@} of Laval asked Eichmann if the children could not be deported along with their family to Auschwitz. Right?
Except that there is a lot of confusion, probably not intentional, but nevertheless it is not what the document say.
- Laval asked on the 4th of July if the foreign Jewish families to be arrested in the South could be deported united to the Occupied zone, where the rules specifying that only Jews from both sex aged between 16 and 45 would be deported, still stood.
- As the quote, somehow, and the report of Dannecker of the 6th of July surely confirms, Laval does not speak about the families in the occupied zone.
- It is Dannecker initiative to ask Eichmann the permission to complete the transport to Auschwitz with children. It has nothing to do with Laval's demand, at least not directly. But the sources are clear, Laval never asked the Nazi to deport the children to Auschwitz!

I admit that despite all the books i have read on this issue, this is really what i thought, or more precisely as i understood it until now. As it is often how it is, if not stated, suggested.
To imply that Laval did somehow request the children of Jewish families to be sent to Auschwitz relies on...nothing but a distortion of sources.

But since you say "no" (to what exactly?), i will leave you with those two examples on how a historical perspective can be influenced through errors and misinterpretation of sources.