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A War of Words over an Image of War

The Fox Movietone Scandal and the Portrayal of French Violence in Algeria, 1955-1956

Emma Kuby

During the Algerian War, films and published photographs documenting brutalities committed by French forces were exceedingly rare, due to censorship and strict controls on journalistic access to the military. However, a dramatic exception to this state of affairs came at an early moment in the war, after a Fox Movietone cameraman captured footage of a French gendarme as he summarily executed an Algerian with a bullet in the back. When the journal L'Express printed frames from the film in December 1955, a scandal ensued that implicated the sitting government in Paris and stoked French anti-Americanism. This article explores the reasons for the scandal, its anatomy, and its longer-term implications for French representations of the violence of the Algerian conflict. It argues that widespread French assumptions about the appropriateness of France's role in Algeria ultimately served to neutralize the story told by the images, even as they were recognized as incontrovertible evidence of atrocity.

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A Camp for Foreigners and “Aliens”

The Harkis' Exile at the Rivesaltes Camp (1962–1964)

Jeannette E. Miller

The French government placed 20,000 of the approximately 100,000 harkis repatriated to France following the Algerian War in the Rivesaltes camp. Located in rural French Catalonia, it had previously lodged foreigners and French citizens whom the government removed from society. The decision to house the harkis in this camp, made during summer 1962 as the French government extricated itself from its 132-year empire in Algeria, symbolized that they were aliens: Berber and Arab repatriates, nearly all of whom obtained French nationality shortly after they arrived in France, were targeted by government housing policies that distanced them from public view. The camp's architecture, living conditions, isolation from French citizens, military oversight, and “reeducation” classes, beyond functioning as powerful symbols, reinforced—and contributed to—the government's treatment of the harkis as aliens. Over the twenty-seven months it remained open, Rivesaltes fostered an exilic existence for these harkis and socially excluded them from French society.

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Nicholas Toloudis

Most studies of the social and political upheavals of the Second Republic treat violence as the main way people resisted the military coup and repression of 1851 and view political dissent through the lens of class. But the suppression of unorthodox political voices in the academy brings another form of resistance to light. Close personal networks and the organizational culture of the French academy distinguished the universitaires' animosity toward Louis Napoleon. To map the patterns of teachers' dissent, I use the proceedings of the Carnot Commission, an organ created by the emergency government of 1870 to gather information about the universitaires who had suffered political persecution around the time of the 1851 coup and offer them restitution. The Commission's work reveals a pattern of personal connections and distaste for authoritarianism that reflected the republican consensus as it emerged in the 1870s.

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Stephen Kalberg

The disagreement between Germany and the United States over the

war in Iraq was massive. During the winter of 2002, many observers

spoke of a long-term rift between these longstanding allies and a

total loss of credibility on both sides. No one can doubt, regardless

of recent healing overtures,1 that the German-American partnership

has been altered and significantly weakened. It has suffered a blow

far more damaging than those that accompanied past conflicts over,

for example, Ostpolitik, the neutron bomb, the Soviet gas pipeline,

the flow of high technology products to the Soviet Union, the imposition

of trade sanctions in 1980 against the military government in

Poland, the stationing in the late 1970s of middle-range missiles on

German soil, and the modernization of short-range missiles in 1989.

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Cora Sol Goldstein

In December 1945, less than six months after the unconditional defeat of the Third Reich and the military occupation of Germany, two anti-Nazi German intellectuals, Herbert Sandberg and Günther Weisenborn, launched the bimonthly journal, Ulenspiegel: Literatur, Kunst, und Satire (Ulenspiegel: Literature, Art and Satire), in the American sector of Berlin. Sandberg, the art editor, was a graphic artist. He was also a Communist who had spent ten years in Nazi concentration camps—the last seven in Buchenwald. Weisenborn, a Social Democrat and the literary editor, was a playwright, novelist, and literary critic. He had been a member of the rote Kapelle resistance group, was captured and imprisoned by the Gestapo in 1942, and was liberated by the Red Army in 1945.

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Ruth Wittlinger

British-German relations have undergone a considerable transformation since 1945 with both countries having to adapt to significant changes in their own status, as well as a very different international environment. Germany's status as a morally and militarily defeated and occupied power in 1945 is in stark contrast to the confident role it is playing at the beginning of the new millennium when—sixty years after the end of World War II—the German chancellor for the first time took part in the VE-Day celebrations of the victors. This article analyzes recent dynamics of collective memory in both countries and examine if and to what extent their collective memories play a role in British-German relations.

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Laura Tate Kagel

This article investigates Germany's role in CIA "extraordinary renditions" of terrorist suspects, focusing on two cases involving German citizens of Middle Eastern descent (Khaled el-Masri and Mohammed Zammar), and one case of an Egyptian cleric who had resided in Italy and was likely transferred to Egypt via a U.S. military airport in Germany (Abu Omar). Amid recent revelations about the extent of the CIA program for transferring and interrogating terrorism suspects, the question of Germany's potential responsibility under international law has gained public attention. Against the background of international legal rules governing responsibility of assisting states, this article examines what was known in Germany about human rights abuses in the above cases and evaluates official steps taken by the government to prevent or uncover violations. In the conclusion, the article addresses the need for increased institutional safeguards to hinder German involvement in questionable U.S. counterterrorism practices.

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Dirk Hoerder

Bordered nation-state approaches are increasingly challenged and they rarely hold up under critical questioning. In this essay I discuss the cultural interactions across Central Europe that preceded the nineteenth-century development of national consciousness and—for many only after 1918—independent states. I argue that identities based on religion, profession or craft, administrative or military expertise characterized people more than those founded on ethnocultural/regional origin during the various migrations of the period. A dual outward-inward perspective focuses on the influence of German-speakers in other parts of Europe and on men and women from other cultures in the core German-language regions. I carry the story up to the 1930s and I argue that transregional and transcultural approaches are empirically sounder than transnational ones. It follows that migrant destinations also need to be addressed as micro- or macro-regions—the several distinct locations in Eastern, East Central, and Southeastern Europe, for example—rather than in terms of states.

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Human Rights, Victimhood, and Impunity

An Anthropology of Democracy in Argentina

Michael Humphrey and Estela Valverde

This article explores human rights politics in the transition from dictatorship to democracy in Argentina. Its ethnographic focus is the phenomenon of families of victims associations, usually led by mothers, that first emerged to protest against mass disappearance under the military dictatorship. Democracy has also produced new families of victims associations protesting against different forms of state abuse and/or neglect. They represent one face of the widespread protest against a 'culture of impunity' experienced as ongoing insecurity and injustice. Private grief is made an emotional resource for collective action in the form of 'political mourning'. The media, street demonstrations, and litigation are used to try to make the state accountable. State management of this public suffering has sought to determine legitimate victimhood based on a paradigm of innocence. The political mourning of victims and survivors charts the social margins of citizenship in the reduced, not expanded, neo-liberal democratic state in Argentina.

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Stephen Reyna

Mary Kaldor has influentially argued that understanding violence in the current period of globalization depends upon the recognition that this is an era of `new wars'. This article critiques that view and in so doing proposes a global warring hypothesis to help explain current US military violence. The argument is formulated as follows. First, the concept of new wars is critiqued, and it is suggested that local, global, and world warring are the varieties of warfare that predominate in the current conjuncture and, hence, require analysis. Second, the global warring concept is introduced and is utilized in a global warring hypothesis, a generalization of which has the virtue of explaining the wars of George W. Bush's regime. Third, evidence is provided that supports the hypothesis.