The 33rd Crif Dinner was held Wednesday, March 7, 2018, at the Carrousel du Louvre, in the presence of the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron, guest of honor of the evening, and his wife, Mrs. Brigitte Macron.
This Dinner was, in many ways, a first time. A first time for the President of the Republic who continued the tradition of his predecessors, a first time for Crif in this very special place of the Carrousel du Louvre, and a first time in the history of the Dinner of Crif which gathered more than 1100 people in the same room.
The Dinner was also remarkable for the importance but also the quality of the guests. Crif has indeed had the privilege of hosting many personalities. Many government ministers as well as many representatives of national politics; 27 Ambassadors; many representatives of the cults; associative, union, intellectual, artistic and economic representatives.
This year, Crif also had the honor of receiving many representatives of the world's Jewish communities, including the President of the World Jewish Congress, Mr. Ronald Lauder, accompanied by a large delegation, a delegation of the American Jewish Committee, presidents and representatives of Jewish communities from Germany, Great Britain, Belgium, Switzerland, Ukraine, Greece, Luxembourg, Brazil and Argentina.
Their presences honored Crif and showed that the issues and topics of our concerns that were presented at the Dinner are of interest, well beyond the borders of the Jewish Community of France. The evening was punctuated by the speeches of the President of Crif, Francis Kalifat, and the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron - speech that you will find in videos at the bottom of this article, and by the awarding of Crif 2018 Prize, attributed to Beate and Serge Klarsfeld for the work of a lifetime. During his speech, Francis Kalifat recalled the many anti-Semitic acts that have shaken France for several months. He asked Emmanuel Macron to take the necessary measures and positions to fight against this everyday antisemitism.
He also insisted on the crime of appealing to boycotts, still too often downplayed, especially on the Internet. The President of Crif spoke at length about the digital challenges of Crif and exposed the project of the Observatory of hatred on the Internet that the institution sets up.
Francis Kalifat also explained to the issue of the reissue of Celine's anti-Semitic pamphlets, indicating that the Crif was strongly opposed to this project.
Finally, he reiterated the position of Crif on the importance of historical truth and on the duty of everyone not to deny the cultural and political data that make up peoples and nations.
After his speech, the President of Crif presented Crif 2018 Prize to Beate and Serge Klarsfeld for their work of denouncing barbarism and restoring and transmitting the memory of the Holocaust.
The President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron then started his speech. He first praised the work of Crif and its ability to link strong and lasting ties with French governments. "For 75 years now, Crif has been the voice of the Jews of France, and since then Crif has been giving a fruitful and permanent address to the highest institutions of the State, especially for 32 years on the occasion of this annual dinner."
Emmanuel Macron then affirmed his will to fight anti-Semitic hatred, in all its forms. He stated in particular that anti-Semitism had no place on the soil of the Republic indicating that it was the "dishonor of France".
The President of the Republic then statued against the reissue of Celine's antisemitic pamphlets.
Concerning hatred on the Internet, Emmanuel Macron defended a clear position, praising the work of the Crif and pledging to contribute to it. He announced a mission, entrusted by the government to Gil Taïeb, vice president of Crif, and to the French-Algerian writer Karim Amellal on the fight against racism and antisemitism on the Internet.
He also said he wanted to strengthen France's ties with Israel - links already very strong - especially during the France-Israel crossed year.
Emmanuel Macron has ruled out recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in a unilateral decision. He regretted the statement by US President Donald Trump that he did not believe that it had helped to create a climate of peace and security.
The President of the Republic has finally emphasized education and the need to restore access to the school of the Republic for all children.
Crif is particularly honored to have received the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron as well as all the personalities who responded to the invitation of Crif.
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