REVEALED: France’s SECRET links to the Nazi Holocaust
FILES detailing French collaboration in the murder of 76,000 Jews were made public for the first time yesterday after being locked away since the end of the Second World War.
By PETER ALLEN
The secret archives were opened as France faces up to its Nazi shame.
They relate to the so-called Vichy regime, led by Marshal Philippe Petain from 1940 to 1944 after the country’s defeat by Hitler’s Germany.
There was often enthusiastic collaboration with the Nazis by French police and paramilitaries during the Holocaust.
Yes, the criminal folly of the occupiers was seconded by the French – by the French state
Others came from the so-called “free zone” in southern France, which was at first unoccupied and from where Petain ran his puppet government in the spa town of Vichy.
A new decree says the newly opened archives can be “freely consulted” by civil servants and historical researchers – “subject to the declassification of documents covered by national defence secrecy rules”.
Among the files will be disturbing evidence that French Jews were pinpointed and then betrayed.
Names of those responsible will be listed.
It comes six years after the French Council of State, the country’s highest judicial body, said the Vichy government “held responsibility” for deportations and they could not solely be blamed on the Germans.
It ruled that Nazi officials did not force the French to betray
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