Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/481/2269
From The Socialist newspaper, 4 April 2007
International Human Rights film festival
Days of Glory
Directed by Rachid Bouchareb
THIS OSCAR-nominated World War Two drama follows the journey of North African (Indigénes) soldiers fighting their way through southern Europe helping to liberate France, their 'mother country'. Not only do they endure the horrors of war but they are subjected to racism and suffer exploitation and injustice at the hands of the very people they are fighting for.
Hundreds of thousands of 'indigenous soldiers' fought against the Nazis under the French flag but have largely been forgotten in the official histories. Their military pensions were frozen in 1959 during the Algerian revolution. A law passed in France in 2002 promised them restitution but no funds were authorised until this year.
Those north Africans who settled in France were treated as second-class citizens. Their children, growing up on impoverished estates and experiencing high unemployment and racism, have expressed their alienation in running battles with the police. Right-wing interior minister and French presidential candidate, Nicolas Sarkozy, referred to these youth as "scum".
The treatment of the Indigénes has echoes with the Gurkhas that fought in the British armed forces. Some veterans never received a pension and those that have, only get a fraction of what is paid to their British counterparts.
On 8 March this year, the Blair government said Gurkhas would receive equal pensions with other British soldiers but only present and future serving Gurkhas.
Gurkha veterans recently watched Days of Glory in London. On 28 March, 2,500 of them marched to Parliament and delivered a letter to Tony Blair calling for citizenship rights and equal pensions.
Days of Glory is on general release
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In The Socialist 4 April 2007:
Children suffer in low pay Britain
Socialist Party editorial
Iran - Sailors fall victim to imperialist policies
Socialist Party news and analysis
Brown's pension robbery
Blair: No solutions to crime or crowded prisons
Waltham Forest protest - more memorable than Prince Charles!
Commemorating the abolition of the slave trade
Socialist Party reviews
One Life: Ricky Tomlinson
In The Line of Fire
Days of Glory
Take national action to defend education
Labour's market policies damage education
Privilege and privation in our schools
NUS leadership abandon fees fight
PCS takes industrial action
London strikers close passport office
PCS members take industrial action
Anger on Newport picket line
Upbeat London rally
Campaign for a New Workers Party
How to stop the BNP: Build a political alternative
Campaign for a New Workers' Party
Socialist Party NHS campaign
Ammanford home care workers march
Frustration at demo delay
We shall not be moved!
Save Sadiq Abakar
Leicester protesters challenge Home Office
Workplace news and analysis
Trade union leaders heckled over inaction
Action needed as Ford bosses close Leamington plant
Celebs fail to save Burberry
Greenwich: "We've got to strike"
Burslem postal workers strike again
British government and local parties retreat on water charges
We Won't Pay Campaign
The Socialist 4 April 2007 |
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