Opinion |

The Surprising Resurrection of France's First Jewish Prime Minister

France's far left is giving Léon Blum an encore. But France's path-breaking first Jewish, first socialist premier would be less than gratified by the troubling similarities between Jean-Luc Mélenchon's leftism and Le Pen's far right

Robert Zaretsky
Robert Zaretsky
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Robert Zaretsky
Robert Zaretsky

A square in Paris and a high school in Créteil have one thing in common with a street in Haifa and a kibbutz in the Galilee: They are all named after Léon Blum. This is not surprising: Blum was not just the first Socialist (and first Jewish) prime minister in the history of France, and was sent to Buchenwald by the Nazis, but as an ardent Zionist, he played an influential postwar role in the early history of Israel.

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