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Pétain was a French general who reached the distinction of Marshal of France. In World War I, General… [More] Petain was a hero – the leader in the victory at Verdun. Later, he was Chief of State of Vichy France from 1940 to 1944. The Vichy Government was allied with the Nazis and was an active participant in the deportation and death of thousands of Jews. Some of these were part of the very old French Jewish community. Others were relative new-comers who had sought refuge in France during the 1930’s as the Nazi scourge began to sweep across Europe. Pétain was not prosecuted for collaborating because of his previous military contribution and advanced age. Pierre Laval, the Prime Minister of the Vichy government did not escape punishment. [Less]
1899: Oscar Zariski
Born in Belarus, Zariski’s Jewish family fled to Ukraine during World War I. It was the first of… [More] several moves forced on him by political problems.He became one of the most influential mathematicians working in the field of algebraic geometry in the 20th century. Zariski’s most famous book is “Commutative Algebra,” a two volume work written jointly with P Samuel. The first volume appeared in 1958, the second in 1960. [Less]
1941: Richard Holbrooke
Holbrooke was an American diplomat, magazine editor, author, professor, Peace Corps official, and investment… [More] banker. He was also the only person to have held the position of Assistant Secretary of State for two different regions of the world — Asia and Europe. After, he was the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan under the Obama administration. Holbrooke was born in New York City and his mother’s and father’s families were Jewish (although they were stated atheists). He was not raised traditionally Jewish, despite his namesake. [Less]