GENEVA (Oct. 17)
The eulogizing of an anti-Semitic poet on the 50th anniversary of his death has angered the Jewish community, and at least one newspaper was provoked to criticize local events aimed at “rehabilitating” Rene-Louis Piachaud, who died in 1941.
The daily Le Nouveau Quotidien used a front-page editorial to question how the organizers, including leading Swiss personalities, could fail to mention that the poet was best known for his anti-Semitic, racist views.
Piachaud, who expounded his views in a paper called Le Pilori (The Pillory), was a great admirer of the Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini. Piachaud regularly slandered Jews for being “arrogant” and “wanting to dominate the world and destroy the culture and sights of their own towns for their profit.”
The Office of Coordination Against Anti-Semitism, recently established by the Geneva Jewish community, expressed indignation in a letter to the groups commemorating Piachaud.
“Before and during the Second World War, he openly propagandized against Jews and black people at the very time when Hitler was destroying the Jews in Europe,” the letter said.