It is impossible to have a career in the university sector of the French Revolution without being knighted by the Society of Robespierrist Studies

Senior foreign affairs official, lawyer specializing in international criminal law, Jacques Villemain continues his research with a new two-volume work, Political History of the Pillars of Hell. Before and after the 9th Thermidor, as well as papers and reports. Excerpt from an interview given in L'Homme Nouveau:

(…) The operation is simple… on paper: of his 40 “operational” regiments (the regiment has approximately 1,000 men), Turreau must use more than half of them to “close” the rebel area through the garrison system. He has about 12,000 people left, which he will divide into 12 columns of about 1,000 people each (schematically, because there are columns of 800 and others of 1,200 people). These columns were positioned on a north-south line approximately 80 kilometers from Ponts-de-Cé, and set out to seize the region by advancing in an east-west movement, each massacring “everything in its path” (Turreau's order to General Moulin), until arriving at the Atlantic coast, where General Haxo is waiting for them with 8,000 men to massacre what would escape this “rake”. The modus operandi is indeed the massacre of the entire population, that is, genocide. The stated aim is to “depopulate the Vendée” (3) with a view to repopulating it: a family of farmers will be invited in every canton in the rest of France to come and settle in the Vendée, or even landless but recognized farmers. good citizens, in order to finally get a “republican Vendée”; we will give them the lands of the Vendéens who will be exterminated. A special law was even passed for this (law of 18 Brumaire II year/November 8, 1793).

It is not easy to make an assessment. On the one hand, Jacques Hussenet (4) from an overall demographic study comes to the conclusion that a total of 170,000 Vendéians perished, mostly women, children and the elderly. Counting based on the “reports” of the activities of the generals who commanded the infernal columns would give 19,000 dead, but 40% of the generals do not give any numerical report on the results of their battles, and even those who do do not do so systematically: only 15% in total reports include such numerical elements. Therefore, it is only reasonable to think that this expedition caused around 40,000 casualties, a figure that is maintained by several historians. Furthermore, it is difficult to estimate that this episode, with the “Virée de Galerne”, was the deadliest of the Vendée War with less than a quarter of the 170,000 total casualties. However, the “pillars of hell” are a failure. A line of 12,000 men cannot effectively comb a line of 20 leagues (80 kilometers), especially not in bocage country, cut off by hedgerows and hollow paths, where visibility does not exceed 100 meters and is often less than 50 meters. In addition, it is necessary to capture the “double curtain” because a group of fighters could break through the first line, the second line is needed to support it or block the breakthrough. The “comb” has too wide teeth: in practice it can only catch the “knots”, if I can take this metaphor of hair, that is villages. The expedition of the infernal columns is thus reduced to a list of villages whose population was massacred (Lucs-sur-Boulogne, Saint-Mesmin, La Gaubretière, etc.). The fighters know how to slip between the columns, even occupying them from the rear, as complained by Turreau, who first announced to Carnot that it would be finished in eight to ten days, and who, even after four months, still had not reached the goal. : The Committee of Public Safety, needing troops on the frontiers, then suspends its operations and withdraws its command. (…)

How do you explain that the French university and our politicians continue to deny the genocide in the Vendée?

This is the last part of my demonstration. Since the fall of Robespierre, the conventionalists, who nevertheless renewed his powers month by month for one year (July 1793 – July 1794), tried to distance themselves from the crimes committed in the Vendée and which could no longer be hidden, by the Terror that unbinds languages. The movement will trigger the denunciation of Carrier by the people of Nantes: he was indeed involved in initiating the general extermination and if he was summoned to Paris in February 1794, it was in no way a sanction, he also continued to support Turreau's plan, especially in to the famous speech he delivered to the Convention on his return to Paris, February 21, 1794, and which I reproduce in my second volume. Carrier remained a leading figure in the Convention until the 9th of Thermidor: Robespierre, who could have eliminated him at the same time as the Hebertists to whom he was close, refrained from doing so. He even made Carrier one of the secretaries of the Convention and, as such, defended the “prairie bill” known as the “Great Terror” during its second reading. Moreover, it is precisely this very pointed profile that will infuriate the Thermidorians because, even after the 9th Thermidor, if he dismisses Robespierre out of prudence, he continues to defend the policy of terror he implemented with the energy we know at Nantes. The convention then rewrote the history of the first half of 1794 with a series of “reports” that were outright falsifications of fact. These “reports”, which form the second part of my second book, conceal facts, which are denied if possible or, otherwise, presented as the result of perhaps excessive revolutionary zeal, but which the “purity of revolutionary intentions” must justify. This is how we arrive at a dozen lines of defense, the main of which are: 1) “it's not true” (pure and simple denial of facts); 2) “it doesn't matter” (it was only about killing counter-revolutionaries); 3) in Paris “we knew nothing” about what was happening in the Vendée; 4) “it's the army's fault” that did everything behind our backs, etc. This same discourse is taken over and adapted to current sensibilities by the French university sector, which monopolizes all research related to the French Revolution. It is impossible to have a career in this university sector without being called by the Société des Études Robespierristes, from which for almost a century all the holders of the chair for the history of the French Revolution at the Sorbonne came from, which is the “leader” of historical research of this period. It is a matter of preserving the “revolutionary hope”, which is basically the “sacred history”, if I dare to say, of communism yesterday, of the neo-leftism of Mélenchon today (Mélenchon who does not stop defending Robespierre). This goal is linked to the reputation of the French Revolution, which is nevertheless “sick of the Vendée”, as the historian Claude Langlois said during the bicentenary in 1789. It is enough to remember the cry of a wounded animal of all those little people during the release of the film Win or Die last year or when in the matter of Puy-du-Fou. Showing that the revolution was also a machine of mass crimes is intolerable to the entire sector of the radical left who only dreams of its repetition, who believed that in 1917 they took over the torch in 1793 and who, despite the failure of the USSR, have not recovered from this political passion: believing that violence is the “midwife of history” (Marx), necessary for the emergence of an ideal society.

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