Macron tackles Zemmour in symbolic setting of Vichy

France — Link

Far-right candidate Eric Zemmour has repeatedly spurred controversy by attempting to whitewash the extent of Marshal Philippe Pétain’s collaboration.

The forgotten wartime persecution of France's 'nomads'


The shameful mass internment of gypsies in camps across France between 1940 and 1946 remained a largely forgotten wartime episode until it finally received official recognition three years ago. Later this month, as part of that process, a ceremony will take place in homage to those who were placed in one of the camps, at Moisdon-la-Rivière in north-west France, where some died from the dire conditions. Pierre-Yves Bulteau traces the history of the persecution, and interviews survivors and witnesses of the horrors at the camp for "nomads" at Moisdon-la-Rivière.

Macron backs down in face of anger over WWI tribute to Pétain

France — Link

A tribute, as part of ceremonies in honour of French WWI Marshalls, to General Philippe Pétain, who commanded French forces at the 1916 Battle of Verdun before leading France's collaborationist regime during German occupation of the country in WWII, will now not be held after President Emmanuel Macron came under fierce criticism for his comments that it was 'legitimate' to honour 'a great soldier' despite his later shame.

The myth of France's 'glorious' post-war years

Culture et idées

In a bid to regain its lost competitive advantage on the world stage, France has just set out an ambitious plan for revitalising its industrial base. Coincidentally a recently-published book takes a critical look at the real costs of the country's last drive to modernise, during the so-called 'Thirty Glorious Years' of the post-war period. Its authors argue that, contrary to received wisdom, human and environmental concerns were sacrificed on the altar of an all-out quest for productivity during that period, while dissenting voices were silenced. Joseph Confavreux reviews the book.

The Vichy deportation camp that is a 'permanent stain' on France

France — Interview

A senior figure in the Socialist Party has angrily criticised French culture minister Aurélie Filippetti for allegedly snubbing Rivesaltes, a former internment and deportation camp in southern France which is set to become a memorial in 2015, during a recent trip to the area. The culture minister has dismissed the claims as 'absurd'. To understand the importance of the memorial site behind this political squabble, Mediapart asked historian Denis Peschanski to describe the political and historical issues at stake in a camp that revives some of the worst memories of the Second World War in France. Antoine Perraud reports.

France to rebaptise last street named after Vichy leader

France — Link

Only remaining street in France named after the leader of the country's collaborationist wartime regime, Marshal Philippe Petain, is to get a new name.

Allied forces "planned to arm Vichy France in Second World War"

International — Link

The British military planned to secretly arm Vichy France behind Churchill’s back, new documents have revealed.

Anything but civil: Vichy's servants of persecution

France — Video

The painful history of the Vichy administration's collaboration with the Nazi occupation continues to fascinate even the younger generation of French historians. In a recently-published book, Laurent Joly, 34, details how France's public servants became the tools of the persecution and deportation of French Jews, divided into two separate administratiive bodies that were major cogs in the process of the Holocaust. He talks here to Antoine Perraud about those who formed a monstrous machine.

The forgotten story of the Atlantic Wall

France — Interview

A book by the writer and documentary director Jérôme Prieur reveals how the Atlantic Wall, a line of fortifications along France's western and northern coastline, erected to resist an allied troop landing, was a cornerstone of the collaboration effort between the Vichy government and Nazi Germany.