Dreyfus Affair 1906
Source: L'Action Française, 8th year, volume XXIX, no. 176, October 15, 1906;
Translated: for marxists.org by Mitchell Abidor.
In 1906 Dreyfus was returned to army service, but when the issue came to a vote in parliament General Mercier, minister of war when Dreyfus was arrested and now a senator, refused to accept this, saying from the tribune amidst outcry from the left that “I feel obliged to declare that the conviction I acquired in 1899 is in no way shaken. Consequently my conscience does not allow me...My conscience, I say... My conscience... I will wait until you allow me to speak...My conscience doesn’t allow me to associate myself with the vote you will announce.” He immediately became a hero to the anti-Dreyfusard anti-Semites of l'Action Française, and the editor of their eponymous journal, Henri Vaugeois, issued a call for a subscription for a gold medal in his honor. Along with contributions, it elicited written responses from figures among the most intransigent anti-Dreyfusards.
It is as a socialist, free-thinking republican, but a Frenchman and a patriot, that I sent you my contribution. To be qualified as a clerical because you attack treason against the fatherland seems to me so phenomenal that it is impossible to protest and react too strongly against this maneuver of Judeo-Protestant masonry. We can see that that “canaille D...” is the true president of our sad republic!
Please accept my compliments for your courageous campaign.
Charmes-sur-Moselle, September 28, 1906
My dear Vaugeois,
I congratulate you for your initiative and join in this homage rendered General Mercier as a purely national demonstration.
No man with common sense is unaware of the political character of the operation that the court of appeals agreed to. As before, Dreyfus remains Dreyfus. Everyone knows that the government retreated before a public debate with the accusers at the court martial, a debate that the law, the Moras Report, and eighteen counselors demanded.
If it was simply a matter of Dreyfus we could, of course, avert our gaze. The individual himself no longer seems to be gifted with any great virulence. But there are the Dreyfusards. Under the color of protecting a Jewish victim they are upsetting everything we venerate and the very solidity of France. Through them Dreyfus still ferments.
So let us glorify General Mercier, magnificent representative of our race, who did not for a second flinch in doing his duty. All the insults of the hundred-mouthed Dreyfus called the Dreyfusard party can do nothing against military honor and French reason. My reflections and the circumstances only increase my respect and friendship for the man who is attacking all the enemies of French society
Here is my subscription for the medal. Your initiative is excellent and it will be taken up by all good Frenchmen.
I passionately admire General Mercier. A hero of duty, in 1899 and still today, he has placed his conscience above everything. For me he personifies Justice with a capital “J.”
When we will have re-made the French monarchy and rid our country of the Israelite vermin General Mercier will have his statue in the heart of the reconstituted fatherland.
The subscription ultimately brought in 35,723.20 francs. The contributors often added comments alongside their names, or comments in lieu of their names: “Comte d'Isnards, voluntary enlistee, wounded and decorated in 1870. Down with the Jews! Down With the republic! Long Live France” (50 fr.); “Deliver us from Jewish perfidy” (1 fr); “Alfred Monriot, in the hope of vengeance by the French race” (2 fr.); “The Catholic Bloc, Toulouse, Revolution, Free-Masonry, Jewry all go together. It’s the party of religious and national treason” (10 fr.); “An anti-Semitic diver” (2 fr); “From the republic and the Jews, deliver us. A merchant from Saint-Brieuc” (.25 fr); “Picquart, the dismissed officer of yesterday will be generalissimo of the jewified army of tomorrow” (.45 fr); “Abbé Thuelin, against the Judeo-Masonic and Huguenot coalition.” (3 fr).
1. Revolutionary turned reactionary journalist
2. Ultra-nationalist novelist
3. Anti-Semitic propagandist, member of Action Française, and son of the novelist Alphonse Daudet