Video: Soccer Fans Sing French Anthem as They Leave Stadium

It has become familiar to us in the Age of Terror to see the worst of what humanity is capable of doing bringing out the best in us. Think of that incredible moment in the early evening of 9/11 when about 150 congressmen stood on the capitol steps, holding hands, embracing. And then, at the conclusion of Speaker Dennis Hastert’s brief but eloquent remarks, a completely unscripted moment occurred when members broke into a heartfelt rendition of “God Bless America.” I was watching NBC News at the time and reporter Judy Woodruff broke down in tears describing it.


One of the targets of the attack in Paris was a soccer stadium where a match between France and Germany was going on. Following the game, fans were delayed in exiting by authorities who sent them back inside where they milled around on the field.

Finally, the police allowed the stadium to clear. And as the fans marched out, many of them began to sing the French national anthem, La Marseillaise.


I always thought that the French anthem is one of the most stirring in the world. And every time I hear it, I think of that incredible moment in the film Casablanca when cafe owner Rick finally throws in his lot with the free French when he gives the OK for the band to play the French anthem in counterpoint to some Nazis singing a German patriotic song. It’s one of the most inspiring moments in Hollywood history:


Liberté, égalité, fraternité!



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