Gen, Giraud Issues Order Aimed at Post-war Status of Jews in France
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Gen, Giraud Issues Order Aimed at Post-war Status of Jews in France

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Documentary evidence came to light today betraying the designs of General Henri Giraud to reduce the Jews of France to a condition of inferior citizenship in violation of the laws of the French Republic.

A copy of a memorandum issued by Giraud’s High Command at Algiers in January was produced here, containing these hitherto unpublished clauses: “1) Jewish commissioned and non-commissioned officers and men in the reserve will generally be assigned to special non-combatant work units; 2) This measure appears necessary in order to avoid having the entire Jewish population gain the title of war veteran, which might prejudice the status given these people after the war.”

This memorandum, the above clauses of which, on orders of Giraud, were kept confidential, was signed by Major General Prioux, of Giraud’s command, and General Louchet, director of personnel, and issued for the generals commanding French troops in North Africa. It is dated Algiers, January 30, 1943; is entitled “The Use of Jews in the Army,” and bears the code numbers “40 C–NGJ–CAB.”

Paul Jacob, secretary general of the French Republican Committee, a new organization of Frenchmen in the United States, produced the text of the memorandum and declared: “This measure, and the reasons invoked, are the proof that General Giraud and his staff envisage a new status for the French population of Jewish faith after the war; and thus, the abrogation of the liberty and equality established for all citizens as a result of the French revolution.”


Mr. Jacob is a reserve officer in the French Army who saw service on the Maginot Line and was a prisoner of the Germans in France for three months, before

Another order by Giraud was cited to demonstrate that his policy aims not alone at stripping the Jews of Algeria of their equality, as had been indicated by abrogation of the Cremieux law of 1870 last month, but at a permanent discriminatory status for Jews in post-war France. This order, promulgated Dec. 30, 1942, provided that French officers of the Jewish faith, including those born in France, would be reinstated into the French army–having been dropped by Vichy in June, 1940–only on two conditions. These were: 1) They had been wounded or cited for bravery either during the first World War, the present war of 1939-40, or in some other theater of operation; 2) Their reinstatement was agreed to by the higher authorities. This order applied to commissioned and non-commissioned officers alike, active and reserve. It is numbered 582–MGP–CAB.


Jacob said that two of his friends had been mobilized as reserve officers in Morocco, but when it was established they were Jews, and they refused to join the special non-combatant units, they were discharged on orders of Giraud. One of them was a French Jew born in Paris, with the rank of captain in the reserve, and the other, a lieutenant, a French Jew from Alsace, whose great-grandfather had fought under Napoleon and his grandfather in the Franco-Prussian war of 1870.

Jacob accused Giraud of making professions of democracy in order to mask his true intentions and to gain the favor of his American supporters. “The new status of French Jews to be proposed by General Giraud after the war can easily be imagined, since he wishes to prevent them from fighting for the liberation of their country as do other French citizens–in order that they may not have the honored title of war veterans,” he declared.

Explaining that it was possible, after examination of individual cases, for French Jews assigned to non-combatant labor units to be transferred to fighting outfits, Mr. Jacob pointed out, however, that a numerus clausus had been established in the army. “General Lascroux, high commander of the troops in Morocco,” he said, “ordered that the number of Jews in the 22nd Army Medical Corps could not exceed 3 percent of the total number of men in that corps. The number of Jewish physicians and pharmacists in the troops stationed in Morocco must be maintained at 3 percent of the total medical personnel.”

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