Paris, 17 October 1961
October 17, 2011 2:03 PM   Subscribe

Today is the 50th anniversary of the Paris massacre of 17 October 1961, when the city's police under Maurice Papon murdered dozens if not hundreds of Algerians who were demonstrating peacefully against the curfew they were living under. A number of commemorations were held in the city. For French speakers, an hour-long 1991 documentary on the massacre, Le silence du fleuve, can be viewed in its entirety on Médiapart. (The title means 'the silence of the river': many of the dead drowned after being thrown in the Seine.)
posted by lapsangsouchong (8 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
A BBC interview with a witness.
posted by gingerbeer at 2:10 PM on October 17, 2011

There is a rather ironic plaque on the Basilique du Sacré-Cœur about the massacre of La Commune de Paris that happened about 100 years earlier.
posted by jeffburdges at 2:42 PM on October 17, 2011 [1 favorite]

Maurice Papon was quite the guy. This wasn't even the worst thing he did. At least, these weren't the crimes against humanity he was convicted of.
posted by gingerbeer at 2:47 PM on October 17, 2011

Sometimes it's surprising that the Republicans dislike the French so much.
posted by goethean at 4:27 PM on October 17, 2011 [6 favorites]

See also: Eugène François Vidocq
posted by alex_skazat at 5:14 PM on October 17, 2011

Most of the Vichy regime's leaders were subsequently sentenced by the GPRF and a number of them were executed.

This Maurice Papon chap was a big cog in Vichy, and he managed not only survive post-war witch hunts, but stay in a position of power? Mad skills. He sounds like quite the weasel.

I like his fake certificate, from gingerbeer's link. Seems way too easy. "Er, let this one go, he's got a note from his mum."
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:43 PM on October 17, 2011

Sadly many links require Flash. One of the down-sides of the iPod.
I did know about this guy. He did evil and felt no shame for it.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 10:10 PM on October 17, 2011

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