A Painful Project for France: A Museum on the Ravages of Terrorism


“It is a history museum,” he said. “When we do one on Nazism, we have to mention Himmler and Hitler.”

Gérôme Truc, a sociologist at the French National Center for Scientific Research who is helping create the museum, called worries about glorifying perpetrators a “red herring.”

Mr. Rousso and Mr. Truc said they were sensitive about how terrorists might be presented in the museum, noting that depictions might focus on them wearing handcuffs in court instead of posing with guns.

Christophe Naudin, a history teacher who was at the Bataclan on Nov. 13, 2015, when gunmen burst in and murdered 90 people — a total of 131 were killed that day in terrorist attacks across Paris — said he was in favor of mentioning the names of assailants in the new museum, but with caution.

“I know some victims refuse to say or see them,” said Mr. Naudin, who wrote a book about his experience. “I prefer to avoid seeing their pictures. I know a lot of victims wouldn’t be able to handle it.”



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