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Charles de Gaulle: Message Denouncing Anti-Semitic Laws of the French Vichy Regime

(October 4, 1941)

The following message was sent from General Charles de Gaulle to Rabbi Dr. Stephen Wise, President of the World Jewish Congress, in New York.

On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the emancipation of the Jews of France, I hereby confirm to you the policy of liberated France towards all Frenchmen.

The famous decree concerning the emancipation of the Jews of France, as well as the Proclamation of the Rights of Man and Citizens, is still in effect and cannot be repealed by the men of Vichy.

In fact, we consider the changes made to the Constitution and to French Law by the so-called Vichy Government, whose origins and actions are unconstitutional and illegal, to be null and void.

LIBERATED FRANCE, which, respects the Constitution and the Laws of the Republic wherever it exerts power, is determined to restore, once victory is achieved, the equality - in dignity and in deed - of all of the citizens on French soil.

Sources: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Paris, Vol. 207, 117; Yad Vashem