Published on 27 June 2024

Crif - French elections: Crif stands on its position "No extreme right, no extreme left"

As the French legislative elections will be held on June 30 and July 7, the President of Crif reaffirmed the position of Crif, rejecting the extremes, "on one side a nationalist populist project, on the other the “antisemitism of the extreme left".

Photo: Crif President Yonathan Arfi during the rally against terrorism and antisemitism - October, 2023


"No extreme right, no extreme left"


In a recent interview with the French newspaper Le Monde, Crif President Yonathan Arfi expressed a “feeling of republican solitude, a bitterness addressed to the left".

"As soon as the alliance of the New Popular Front was established on June 12, the Crif [had] deemed it “unworthy” to act as if “antisemitism was a secondary issue, and no longer the fundamental red line for the left since the affair Dreyfus”, despite a project which sets out in black and white the fight against racism and antisemitism."he recalled. 

Yonathan Arfi added: "The Republic has not said its last word […]. A good part of the French defend the republican framework which rejects the extremes, on the one hand the nationalist populist project of the Rassemblement National (extreme right), on the other the antisemitism of La France insoumise (extreme left) »

The Crif, which has always opposed the Rassemblement national, assures that it “will continue to do so”: "It is an extremely dangerous party for French society, which has never been a bulwark against antisemitism. Anything that threatens the republican framework and universalism is fundamentally dangerous for Jews. To Jewish consciences, we must refuse fatalism."

French Jewish institutions thus reaffirm that they do not deviate from their line: "No extreme right, no extreme left".


Crif has worked on two argumentative documents to counter the Rassemblement national and La France insoumise parties. These arguments are available at the end of the article (in French).


Some of the key points were translated to English (thanks to the European Jewish Congress): 

Against the Rassemblement national: 

1. The Rassemblement national claims continuity with the FN (Front National)

• The exclusion of Jean-Marie Le Pen in 2015, the name change in 2018, and a new speech are not enough to make the Rassemblement National (RN) acceptable.
• At the end of 2022, the RN organized a symposium at the National Assembly to celebrate its 50thanniversary. On this occasion, Marine Le Pen wrote: "Historians will remember that in 1972 was born in France the political force that had the lucidity to keep alive the flame of the Nation in its hands, in the winds and the storm."

2. The RN instrumentalizes Jews to gain respectability:

• The RN positions itself since October 7 as the "shield of French Jews.": In reality, it only denounces antisemitism when it comes from the opposing camp
• After October 7, RN deputies refused to vote on the only law aimed at combating antisemitism
• The RN has never officially condemned the antisemitic positions of its founders
• On November 5, 2023, Jordan Bardella  declared on BFM TV: "I don't believe that Jean-Marie Le Pen was antisemitic."
• The issue of antisemitism remains the last barrier to gaining legitimacy to govern
• As Louis Aliot himself acknowledged in 2013: "It is antisemitism that prevents people from voting for us. [...] Once you break this ideological barrier, you free the rest."

3. The RN is still the party of racists and antisemites:

• According to the 2024 Radiography of Antisemitism (AJC, Fondapol, Ifop), 44% of RN voters strongly adhere to antisemitic prejudices, compared to 34% of the French population
• Known figures for their racism and antisemitism continue to play an important role

4. The RN threatens women's rights

• In 2023, the RN group in the National Assembly was the only one to vote against the bill to strengthen women's access to responsibilities in the public service
• In June 2023, in the European Parliament, RN deputies chose to abstain from voting on a resolution on sexual harassment in the European Union


Against La France insoumise: 

1. Antisemitism allegations

• A significant percentage (92%) of French Jews believe LFI contributes to rising antisemitism
• Jean-Luc Mélenchon and other LFI members have made controversial statements perceived as antisemitic
• Reports indicate a high prevalence of antisemitic prejudices among LFI voters

2. Undemocratic internal practices

• Members expressing dissenting opinions risk marginalization
• LFI shows support for dictatorships like those in Russia, Syria, and Venezuela

3. Republican left compromised:

• Traditional left-wing parties have compromised by aligning with LFI
• LFI refused to sign a charter against antisemitism, unlike other leftist groups
• Prominent left-wing figures have opposed alliances with LFI

4. Incitement to disorder and violence:

• LFI members have encouraged public disorder, such as school blockades during protests
• Actions like displaying a Palestinian flag in the National Assembly and making threats against the Élysée Palace undermine republican institutions
• The party has controversially reinstated members with criminal records or under investigation

5. Favoring communitarianism:

• LFI is accused of promoting communitarianism, as evidenced by statements against universalism and the instrumentalization of the Israel-Palestine conflict for electoral gains

6. Complacency with terrorism:

• LFI members have refrained from labeling Hamas as a terrorist organization and have shown support for figures linked to terrorism
• Statements and actions by party members have led to investigations for "apology of terrorism."