This is one of the images that may taint the "march against Islamophobia", event which took place in the calm this Sunday in Paris and which gathered 13,500 people according to our count. It is a photograph, abundantly relayed on social networks, where we see protesters display a yellow star.
Comprising five branches (not six like the Star of David), the sticker recalls the well-known device of discrimination and repression of Jewish populations during the Second World War. One way, one can understand, to compare their fate to that reserved today to certain Muslims of France.
A comparison "to vomit" according to Jakubowicz
Beyond the problematic relativism of this ornament, there is the fact that, as we see in the picture, a little girl was decked out. Her and the protesters At the same time, there was Senator Ecologist Esther Benbassa, who, unlike Europe's Ecology-Greens, maintained his presence at the march in "his name". She herself published the photo on Twitter.
The lawyer Alain Jakubowicz, former president of the International League against Racism and Antisemitism (Licra), was one of the first to be indignant, judging the comparison "to vomit".
If it should happen to happen that this little girl will one day end her life in a gas chamber I will be ready to sacrifice mine to avoid it. But today this picture is to vomit and those who have decked this star have dishonored. pic.twitter.com/xPIUrfqh1t
– Alain Jakubowicz (@JakubowiczA) November 10, 2019
"If it were to happen that this little girl would one day end up in a gas chamber, I would be willing to sacrifice mine to avoid her, but today (…) those who have it adorned with this star have dishonored themselves, "he wrote.
Indignation at LaREM, LR and PS
Most leaders of the Republican Printemps, a movement that defends secularism, also relayed the picture by denouncing it. "The hijacking of the yellow star is an infamy," said former vallsist Gilles Clavreul. Ditto at La République en marche, where the Yvelines MP Aurore Bergé accuses the demonstrators present on the image of having "instrumentalized" the girl.
I see especially in this picture an instrumental child, to whom we shamefully wear a yellow star.
The situation of Muslims in our country is in no way comparable to that of Jews in the 30s / 40s. This comparison is indecent. https://t.co/2rVOAs4gRL
– Aurore Bergé (@auroreberge) November 10, 2019
The mayor of the Republicans of the seventeenth arrondissement of Paris, Geoffroy Boulard, denounces meanwhile "a manipulation of the Holocaust". The intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévy judges "despicable" this "staging" and directly condemns Esther Benbassa. "There is no bus at Place de la Contrescarpe, no Vel d'Hiv or yellow star against Muslims," he tweeted.
Socialist Senator David Assouline adopts an equally virulent tone. "I'm looking for words to say my nausea," he wrote, finally calling the photo "obscene".
Benbassa defends himself from all anti-Semitism
Senator Esther Benbassa defends herself against all anti-Semitism. In a series of tweets, the elected EELV claims not to have "noticed these badges". Then she specifies that the girl, as well as the demonstrators with whom she parades, carry "a star with 5 branches (the one carried by the Jews had 6), a crescent moon evoking the end of Ramadan".
I did not notice these insignia: a star with 5 branches (the one worn by the Jews had 6), a crescent moon evoking the end of Ramadan. And here I am treated as an anti-Semite and a denialist. I, a Jewess, having dedicated my life to writing the story of mine. pic.twitter.com/FM0kE6PSmO
– Esther Benbassa 🌻 (@EstherBenbassa) November 10, 2019
"And here I am treated as an anti-Semite and negationist, I, a Jewess, having devoted my life to writing the history of my own," she is moved, brandishing the covers of the various works she has written or co write on the subject.
"The condition of the Jews in the dark years and that of the Muslims today are not comparable, but that our stigmatized contemporaries identify with these past sufferings is quite understandable – no one here steals his suffering from anyone."