After reading the very insightful question to what extent were the Jewish persecuted during the Soviet Union and its first two answers reminded me my high school History classes to the extent that the demonstration of rs.29, which has been accepted, goes against my memories of Communist anti-Semitism, at least in France. Indeed I remember hearing that the Communists and the left in general were opposed to the Jews assimilating the Jews to money and capitalism ...

I know that the Dreyfus affair was an important changepoint for the communists and the Left for them to stand with the Jews to the extent that it was about defending human rights. But I also know from this article on L'Antisémitisme à gauche. Histoire d'un paradoxe, de 1830 à nos jours, written by Michel Dreyfus that several figures from the left were openly anti semitic. Like revolutionary Auguste Blanqui and his disciples, the disappointed of Dreyfusism, the pacifist socialists hostile to Leon Blum and other, the ultra-left ferment of negationism, the antiparliamentary left, stood against the Jews. But this is generally speaking about the left. I only know Paul Rassinier, former communist then socialist, and founder of negationism that has exported so well to the Muslim world, is now well known. Or Robert Louzon (1882-1976), one of the animators of The proletarian revolution, magazine "syndicalist" founded in 1925 by revolutionary militants precociously excluded from the PCF. So I don't know what to say about the communist position from its cradle to WW2

I imagine that WW2 was another changing point as far as being Communist was a reason to be arrested in France as it was for being Jewish. Yet the French Communist Party only turns to resistance in 1941 after the German-Soviet Pact was broken by Germany invasion and the USSR, leader of the communists parties thanks to the Kominform until it was disbanded in 1956, quickly stood with the Arab countries against Israel. From this period to nowadays it starts to be quite hard to figure out for me for a lack of historical knowledge.

As a result were communists opposed to the Jews in France ?

  • 2
    Judaism or Jews?
    – user31561
    Feb 14 '19 at 12:31
  • @Orangesandlemons good question. I think I should keep it to the Jews as far as I feel there were opposed to them for wealth or capitalistic reason. Communists were opposed to Judaism for being, as other religions, a honeypot. So this is not specific. Feb 14 '19 at 13:28
  • As a result I think there is a difference between the practitioners of Judaism, which was the main interest of the question which raised my interest, and the Jews I'm focusing on. And I don't know if I can say that the practitioners of Judaism were protected by USSR, after reading rs.29's answer whereas the French Communists were opposed to the Jews as a people. Feb 14 '19 at 13:29
  • This question badly suffers from wild overgeneralization. What do you nean by 'communists': all of them, only some, half? In which period? Same question for 'Jews'. Why do you expect a general answer to this question would even make sense? Mar 9 '19 at 15:39
  • @reinierpost Yes, like asking if nazis were antisemits, this would be generalizing as well ;) Joke apart, I think the good approach is to distinguish which communists branches were openly antisemic, if catefories can be created from the individuals positions, as well as at what time (because it is History here, eh?). As far as I have found numerous examples of people claiming to cbe commnists standing with clear antismeic point of views the a historical breakthrough would be to break out of this cloud specific categories at specified times Mar 9 '19 at 18:36

No, at least not during World War II.

Yes, the Communist resistance was fairly late in starting (1941), but when it did, its leader, Colonel Gilles (aka Joseph Epstein), was Jewish.

Also, Leon Blum, the pre-war French premier, was both Jewish and socialist. He would not have gotten in without Communist support.


Communism in general is atheist. Marx famously opined that religion is the "opium of the people." Note that different countries had different degrees of tolerance. Some have freedom of worship but don't allow organized religion (e.g. Vietnam).

Another thing to note - it can be used as a tool to manipulate people, which is what Stalin did with Eastern Orthodoxy.

That being said, it may not directly answer your question, but one can deduct that Communists were not all accepting of zealots, but tolerated religion in general as it could be politically useful.

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