Browsing Tag

New Film Exposes


March 6, 2017

Conservatives in general are aware of how bloodthirsty the French Revolution proved to be. In fact, Edmund Burke, who is considered by many to be the founder of the conservative intellectual tradition, formed his philosophy largely in horrified reaction to the excesses of the French ‘reign of terror’. However, even conservatives have generally not been aware that the revolutionary government is responsible for the first genocide of modern history, and that the terror tactics of Lenin’s Soviet government were explicitly modeled on this act of mass extermination. Now, with Daniel Rabourdin’s beautiful and heartbreaking new film, the truth is easily accessible. The Hidden Rebellion retells the forgotten story of the attempted extermination of the Vendée, residents of a conservative “rather more Christian and prosperous region of France.”

Like most Europeans at the time, Vendéans were largely uneducated and relatively apolitical, but when the ‘Republican’ (read ‘revolutionary’) government of France began to engage in acts of violence against their local clergy and to conscript men from this peaceful community into its ideological wars, the community began to rise up in defense of localism and liberty. In response, Paris labeled Vendéans to be an “impure race” and “slaves” and gave military commanders a mandate to exterminate them. Not just peasant soldiers, or even young men, but all Vendéans, including women, the elderly, and children. In all, they managed to exterminate 200,000 out of an estimated population of 600,000… a higher proportion than Pol Pot’s Cambodian Genocide.

The Hidden Rebellion documents the genocidal nature of this mass extermination with reference to numerous primary source documents which explicitly reveal the attempt to liquidate an entire people, their culture and their ethnicity. Acts of gratuitous cruelty, such as stripping priests and nuns naked, tying them together and throwing them into the Loire river are described and (delicately) reenacted. Such act was called “Civic Wedding.”