The French Paradox and the Jews

The death in Paris on April 8, 2015 of Jean-Louis Crémieux-Brilhac, historian and member of the French resistance in World War II, has reawakened the controversy of what has been termed “the French paradox.” Although 76,000 Jews were deported from France to their death, how was it that 75% of Jews in France during the war managed to survive death at the hands of the inhumane Nazi regime, while only 20% in the Netherlands, and 55% in Belgium were able to do so? France, in both the Occupied Zone controlled by Nazi Germany and the Unoccupied Zone run by the Vichy regime, experienced various levels and stages of persecution, resistance, and rescue. The regime was implicated by its own volition, not by Nazi coercion, in the Holocaust. Memories of that history are leading French leaders, despite problems, to present action to prevent persecution of its Jewish population. Crémieux-Brilhac, born in Paris, came from one of the oldest assimilated Jewish families...(Read Full Article)

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