Emile Zola was a fascinating man, from what I have learned thus far. If not for Zola, Dreyfus would probably have never left Devil's Island alive instead of "only" spending 5 years there.
One of the most famous headlines and articles written in the 19th century:
Folks that think only American governments lie and intentionally bury and suppress evidence should read about the Dreyfus affair. His conviction was fabricated. The evidence against him was that he was a Jew, and he was a Jew.
Sentenced to life imprisonment for allegedly having communicated French military secrets to the German Embassy in Paris, Dreyfus was sent to the penal colony at Devil's Island in French Guiana and placed in solitary confinement, where he was to spend almost 5 years under the most inhumane of conditions.
Two years later, in 1896, evidence came to light identifying a French Army major named Ferdinand Walsin Esterhazy as the real culprit. After high-ranking military officials suppressed the new evidence, a military court unanimously acquitted Esterhazy after the second day of his trial. The Army accused Dreyfus of additional charges based on false documents fabricated by a French counter-intelligence officer, Hubert-Joseph Henry, who was seeking to re-confirm Dreyfus's conviction. Henry's superiors accepted his documents without full examination.
NOTE: This is not to beat up on the French. I am reading about this and of course it is obvious that govt officials in high power are humans and whatever the nation, will do abonimable things to stay in power.
For a Democratic nation, France had historically been extremely repressive. Their human rights record, until recently was deplorable. This was one of Europe's last nation to abandon the Death Penalty (under Francois Mitterand.) It also had what was probibly the most barbaric prison colonies in the Democratic world, Devil's Island.
Their colonial policy was particularly evil. The actions of the French in repressing unrest in Algerial was especially severe.
I did read Germinal, Zola's factually based account of a miner's strike. It was a breathtaking work.
Regarding the Dreyfus affiar, it attracted international attention. Dreyfus did spend many years in Devil's Island and returned a broken man.
Last edited by Cd.; 02-28-2012 at 02:04 AM.
Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.
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