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Raoul Cohen-Addad papers

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 2009.410.1

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    Raoul Cohen-Addad papers

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    The Raoul Cohen-Added papers consist of correspondence, identification papers, receipts, and a photograph documenting Raoul Cohen-Addad’s participation in Resistance activities in Algeria in November 1942, his career as a French government employee in the tax office, and his contribution to Jewish cultural and religious organizations in Algeria. The papers also include a 1950 report on the representation of Algerians and Jews in textbooks used in French and Algerian schools.
    inclusive:  1939-1962
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Nicole Cohen-Addad
    Collection Creator
    Raoul Cohen-Addad
    Ishaque Isaac (Raoul) Cohen‐Addad (1916-2003), the son of Jewish merchants, was born in El Attaf, Algeria (Les Attafs, Algiers, Algeria) in 1916. His conscription into the French army in 1939 interrupted his career as a French government employee in the tax office. Following France’s defeat, the Vichy regime’s anti‐Jewish laws stripped him of his French citizenship and civil service job. He joined the Jewish resistance (the Group Geo Gras) and helped the Allies invade and liberate Algeria during Operation Torch on November 8‐9, 1942. He was called up to join the French army again in December 1942, but a March 1941 decree forbid him from joining the Free French Forces because he was Jewish. Although Algeria had been liberated in November 1942, the anti‐Jewish laws of Vichy were still in effect under General Giraud. Cohen-Addad was therefore assigned to a company of “Pionniers Israélites” relegated to special camps set apart from the other soldiers. He was confined to the El Méridj forced labor camp with poor hygienic conditions near the Tunisian border from December 1942 to June 1943. The Vichy racial laws were abolished in Algeria in October 1943, but Cohen-Addad was not allowed to volunteer for the front because of medical reasons, and he remained in Algiers until his demobilization in 1945. He was able to return to his job in the French administration at the end of the war, but he never believed that authorities acknowledged the maltreatment he had endured at the hands of Vichy. He spent most of his life fighting for recognition of and compensation for the injustice he had suffered as a government employee who had lost his job, the loss of his health and sanity as a persecuted Jew, and the indignity he felt when his efforts to liberate Algeria during WW II were not recognized. His fight created friction with his civil service superiors, and he received severe reprimands. From January 1945 to February 1946 and again after 1955, he served as secretary general of the “French Liberation of November 1942,” an association that tried to make the mainland French government recognize the legitimacy of wartime resistance movements in Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia, just like the FFC, the FFI, or the RIF. He worked to keep fellow Resistance fighters in contact and to commemorate key events every year. He also worked to obtain the status of Combattant Volontaire de la Résistance (CVR) for himself and his fellow North African Resistance fighters. Cohen-Addad remained a member of the “French Liberation of November 1942” association throughout his life. He died in Paris in 2003.

    Physical Details

    1 folder
    System of Arrangement
    The Raoul Cohen-Addad papers are arranged as a single series.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    The donor, source institution, or a third party has asserted copyright over some or all of these material(s). The Museum does not own the copyright for the material and does not have authority to authorize use. For permission, please contact the rights holder(s).

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Dr. Nicole Cohen-Addad, daughter of Raoul Cohen-Addad, donated the Raoul Cohen-Addad papers to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2009.
    Record last modified:
    2023-12-26 15:11:03
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