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De Gaulle Pledges Restoration of Jewish Rights in France

November 14, 1940
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

A message of General Charles de Gaulle, cabled from Libreville, pledging restoration of Jewish rights in a resurrected France was read last night to more than a thousand persons at Carnegie Hall attending a rally in protest against the Vichy’s anti-Jewish laws. The meeting was sponsored by the American Jewish Congress in cooperation with three non-sectarian organizations.

General de Gaulle’s message, which was read by Dr. Albert Simard, vice-president of “France Forever,” said: “Be assured that since we have repudiated everything that has falsely been done in the name of France after June 23 the cruel decrees directed against French Jews can, and will, have no validity in free France. These measures are not less a blow against the honor of France than they are an injustice against her Jewish citizens. When we shall have achieved victory, not only will the wrongs done in France itself be righted, but France will once again resume her traditional place as a protagonist of freedom and justice for all men, irrespective of race or religion, in a new Europe.”

The prediction that France will throw off the chains of Nazi oppression and scrap Vichy’s anti-Semitic policy was made in other speeches and messages.

Senator Robert F. Wagner declared: “I profoundly believe that the French people will cast out this devil of anti-Semitism. The true spirit of France will not accept this denial of man’s worth and dignity, this satanic doctrine that is made in Nazidom to serve its sinister purposes.” Dr. Stephen S. Wise saw the French anti-Jewish decrees as “nothing more than a temporary phase of inglorious and enslaved France.”

City Council President Newbold Morris urged that the rally be followed by “a long chain of meetings which must be held throughout the length and breadth of our free nation to mobilize public opinion behind a gigantic struggle of free people the world over.” A resolution stressing aid to Britain was adopted.

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