"A moving commemorative plaque" unveiled this Sunday in Boussières-sur-Sambre
La Voix du Nord .fr - Published the 28/09/2014 - Updated the 28/09/2014 at 13:39 - M.DE.
A plaque to challenge the pedestrians, “to express against anti-semitism” and for the Duty of Remembrance. Revealed this Sunday lunchtime in the presence of Jean-Pierre Saal, president of the Union of the Jews of France and their friends (UJFA), of the mayor Claude Dupont and of the Vicar Fauvel, this plaque, installed Rue des Juifs (Jews street), is the first one to be inaugurated in the North .
For twenty years Claude Dupont, Mayor of Boussières, didn't write a single speech. This lunchtime he made an exception and did a speech inspired by Zola "whose words are still ringing today" and evoque "the fight against antisemitism". He has made this cause a duty for him. "We have to stand above events. Everywhere people are massacred, I don't understand what's happening." On his side, Jean-Pierre Saal, President of the UFJA, saluted the spontaneity with which the town of Boussières-sur-Sambre accepted "a commemorative plaque in Rue des Juifs (Jews Street). The symbol of a tormented history. It's a big day for France and for Democracy."
Michèle arrived from Lille, a two hours journey - "because of roadworks" -, to participate to "the Duty of Remembrance. I'm French and Jewish by chance in the same way that some are French and Catholic or French and Muslim. All fanatism is dreadful whatever the period in history.
"Remember pedestrians!" Jews were also persecuted in Boussières-sur-Sambre.
La Voix du Nord .fr - Published the 24/09/2014 - CÉCILE DEBACHY
On Sunday in Boussières-sur-Sambre a commemorative plaque will be revealed in Rue des Juifs. The Union des Juifs de France et de leurs amis (UJFA) will be present. A symbolic gesture and a Duty of Remembrance for the mayor and for the organisation as well as a first time in the region.
"In the Middle Ages, Jews Streets (Rues des Juifs) or Jewry Streets (Rues de la Juiverie) were actually ghettos. They were places where Jews had to wear "the wheel" and a yellow hat" explains Jean-Pierre Saal the President of the Union des Juifs de France et de leurs amis (UJFA). Established in 1998, the organisation campaigns for these, still numerous, streets to be preserved and commemorated in towns and villages. A "Duty of Remembrance" at national level where the UJFA has been contacting the town officials to install commemorative plaques in all places of memory.
In the region, out of twenty-two towns, a lot of them in our area, the only one to have answered our appeal yet is Boussières-sur-Sambre. "I was immediately ready for it. I'm doing it because I'm not racist nor antisemitic, I don't like extremism" explains Claude Dupont the mayor of this village of 530 inhabitants. He also explains that besides the Duty of Remembrance he also wants to send a message to the citizens of his district who massively vote for the National Front at every election.
« For the sake of history»
The absence of communal archives prevents us from learning more about the history of this little street that passes through the village and borders the church. "In the Middle Ages, Jews Streets were usually beside chuches because the pope had forbidden Catholics to lend money with interest. However, Jews and other Christians could to do so. They used to lend money but when the debtor couldn't pay back he would kill the lender" explains Jean-Pierre Saal. Preserving the name of these sites, sometimes tragic, is not a paradox. "On the contrary, we have to preserve them for the sake of history."
This Sunday, in the presence of officials, inhabitants and members of the organisation, a plaque reading "Pedestrians, remember!" will be unveiled. This will happen 223 years, almost to the day, after the promulgation of the official emancipation of Jews, following a long period of protests. "Since the 27 September 1791, Jews are free and Equal. Revealing this plaque is treating Jews like any other full citizen", says Jean-Pierre Saal who invited all the mayors of the region. It may encourage some of them.
The ceremony will be held Sunday 28 September at 11:30am, rue des Juifs at Boussières-sur-Sambre.