Hollande to Commemorate Seventieth Anniversary Of Vel d’Hiv Roundup

July 17, 2012 10:13 am 0 comments

Vel' d'Hiv Roundup memorial. Photo: Leonieke Aalders.

On July 22 the president of France Francoise Hollande will deliver a commemoration speech at the Paris site of the 1942 roundup of French Jews in remembrance of the tragedy’s seventieth anniversary. This is the first time in seventeen years that  a French president will speak about the Vel D’Hiv roundup after Jacques Chirac’s historic apology for France’s complicit role in the mass raid, according to French newspaper Le Monde.

On July 16, 1942 over 13,000 Parisian Jews were forcefully gathered in a mass raid by French police at the Velodrome d’Hiver (French for “The Winter Velodrome)”, an indoor bicycle and sports stadium that had once held the 1924 Summer Olympics. After being temporarily detained there, the victims were deported to death camps, including Auschwitz, for extermination. Around one hundred people are known to have survived and only a handful of children. The roundup at Vel D’Hiv is considered to be Vichy France’s largest mass raid on Jews during World War II.

By and large, France has only recently been overcoming its resistance to admitting its role in the Holocaust. Before Chirac’s 1995 historic speech, the French government refused for decades to apologize for the French policemen’s roles in the roundup. Since the 1990s, there has been a growth of Holocaust studies in France, especially after a 1997 circular gave access to World War II archives which have been instrumental in Holocaust research.

Educators in France also believe that Holocaust studies are effectively taught in their school’s curriculum. ”I think the transmission [of events] is done well,” said Hubert Tison, general secretary of France’s history teachers association, to RFI. “It’s true these events should be treated as key dates in our national history, but the subject is no longer taboo. I think it’s being effectively taught, but maybe there’s still work to be done before it takes root in our collective memory.”

On Monday a new exhibition on the mass raid called “The Vel d’Hiv raid: the police archives” opened at city hall in Paris’ third arrondissement in time for its 70th anniversary, according to France’s 24 News.

Rabbi Moché Lewin, spokesperson for the Chief Rabbi of France, told RFI that the commemoration of Vel d’Hiv “is necessary for the well-being of humanity itself, and to assure that a barbaric ideology does not develop [in France] in the future.”

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Blogs 10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    Ten major film studios are currently in production on projects that promote a decidedly pro-Israeli narrative. In famously liberal Hollywood, such a development has left mouths agape and set tongues a wagging. Since the Jewish State began defending itself from the thousands of rockets that Hamas has hurled at it – as well as ongoing terror attacks and murders, the overwhelming number of Tinseltown’s producers, directors, actors, and studio moguls have remained indifferent to the plight of millions of Israeli [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Israel Sports So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    Israeli Judoka Yarden Gerbi (63kg), 25, of Netanya, on Thursday lost the final round at the Judo World Cup, and her world title to Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, at a match held in Russia. “I have mixed feelings,” Gerbi told Israeli Army radio. But, “I shouldn’t assume that I’d win the world Judo championship twice in a row,” she admitted. Gerbi won gold in Rio De Janeiro last year. “When I made my decision, I knew it was going to [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    “Jews Out!” was just the name of a child’s game that three little girls played in World War II Europe. But all is not as it seems because the three girls were Jewish, but hiding their true identities. In award-winning author R. D. Rosen’s riveting non-fiction work, Such Good Girls, “Jews Out!” wasn’t a game; it was a struggle for survival. The girls, Sophie, Flora, and Carla, grew up at a time and a place that did not allow them [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    JNS.org – “He was part hippie, part yippie, part beatnik, and part New Age,” wrote Elli Wohlgelernter in a Jerusalem Post eulogy in 1994, following the Oct. 20 passing of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Twenty years later, more robust accounts of Carlebach’s life have come to the surface. Earlier this year, Natan Ophir published the book Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Life, Mission & Legacy. This past summer, Rabbi Shlomo Katz’s The Soul of Jerusalem hit the shelves. But even the authors will admit [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    As Hamas loses its grip on power in the Gaza Strip as a result of war, poverty and disillusionment, the Islamist terrorist group has developed an ingenious way to raise the moral of the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs it was elected to serve. While currently focused on delivering a rocket into every Israeli home, Hamas has not left its own people behind. To gently wipe away the tears of children strategically placed inside kindergartens as human shields, the Hamas Interior Ministry has [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    In a strong statement that challenges the historic divide between Christianity and Judaism, Pope Francis recently proclaimed, “Inside every Christian is a Jew.” But if you look at Renaissance artworks that depict Jesus, you will not find any evidence of a Jew inside the Christianized Jesus — even though the Gospels in the New Testament tell us that Jesus was Jewish to the core. Getting that point across to the public is a daunting task, as I learned in interviews I [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Recycling His Roots

    Recycling His Roots

    JNS.org – Having started his career playing on his family’s pots and pans, Jewish musician Billy Jonas has maintained this homemade performance ethic while spreading his messages of simple living and environmentalism to a shared home throughout the world. After beginning in the kitchen, Jonas soon moved to the music room, where he picked up the piano, guitar, and trombone. These days, the multi-talented multi-instrumentalist plays on with pretty much anything he can find, including cans, bottles buckets, and other recycled-object [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Personalities Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    JNS.org – Sara Davidson’s The December Project is a new book that should be read by all senior citizens, and by those who hope to live a long life, for it raises a question that most of us have not been taught how to answer: What should we do in that final stage of our lives? Many of us continue working past the traditional retirement age of 65, not because we need the money and not because we find the [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.