In a speech commemorating the 75th anniversary (1942) since the deportation of 13,000 Parisian Jews, President Emmanuel Macron delivered a speech in which he suggested that anti-Zionism is the new form of anti-Semitism.
Macron used the occasion to attack anti-Semitism, Holocaust denial, and specifically the leader of Front National, Marine Le Pen. During the electoral campaign, Le Pen sought to whitewash the responsibility of France for the Holocaust, suggesting that the Vichy regime was not France.
“J’aimerais qu’on parle de l’antisémitisme islamiste : je pense notamment à cette femme de 70 ans défenestrée à Paris.” #LeTalk
— Marine Le Pen (@MLP_officiel) April 10, 2017
“It’s convenient and easy to see Vichy as something perpetrated by foreign agents but it was the reality. You can’t build pride on a lie,” Macron said on Sunday.
“It was indeed France that organized the roundup, the deportation, and thus, for almost all, death,” he added.
Macron went on to condemn more broadly Holocaust denial and even suggested that anti-Zionist and anti-Israel expressions are “a new type of anti-Semitism,” Haaretz reported on Sunday.
Invited at the ceremony was the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, who devoted most of his speech on a perceived clash of civilizations against radical Islamic terrorism. “The zealots of militant Islam, who seek to destroy you, seek to destroy us as well,” Netanyahu said.
In 1995 Jacques Chirac became the first President of France to accept partial responsibility for the deportation and extermination of 76,000 French Jews.
A wave of French Jews is leaving France for Israel over the last few years: 5,000 in 2016 and 8,000 in 2015, according to the Jewish Agency of Israel to Agence France-Presse. It is unclear whether economic reasons or anti-Semitism is the reason of this substantial migratory wave.