Speaking Out Against Dieudonne

  • January 8, 2014

Update: According to France 24, Dieudonne was taken into custody on Jan. 22 for allegedly assaulting a bailiff who came to collect fines Dieudonne owes for “inciting racial hatred.”

Alongside French government actions to ban performances of Dieudonne’s new show, concerned and responsible officials and civil society leaders are publicly voicing outrage at the behavior of the anti-Semitic comedian and the growing use of the quenelle gesture he invented.

The Representative Council of France's Black Associations (CRAN) issued a statement, saying “For a long time, Dieudonne fought against racism and the far right.  We still remember with emotion his actions in the town of Dreux. But for several years his main fight seems to be against the Jews of France, and he is closer and closer to the far right, his former enemies. The CRAN has noticed this evolution with dismay and can only deplore it. (...) The CRAN calls on the Blacks of France not to accept the quenelle or the appeals to anti-Semitism..."

Commenting on the quenelle gesture, popularized by Dieudonne, the president of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) Dalil Boubakeur condemned its use by the French soccer player, Nicolas Anelka, saying he opposed “all anti-Semitic or racist acts or statements in sports.”

Even the owners of Dieudonne’s home theater, La Main d’Or, are looking for legal means of breaking his lease.

President François Hollande said, “No one should be able to use this show for provocation and to promote openly anti-Semitic ideas.”

Interior Minister Manuel Valls, who issued the request to local officials to prevent the performances, said, “Dieudonné is deeply anti-Jewish.  We must carry out a political campaign to mobilize society against him.”

Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti said, “Mr. Dieudonne is no longer a comedian.  He has become a Holocaust denier and revisionist.”  And Justice Minister Christiane Taubira called him a “pitiful buffoon” and “recidiviste anti-Semite.”

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