Pledge to our Fellow Prisoners
For those that we have left behind, fighting Brothers taken by surprise while leading the true battle and for those the enemy has not given us back.
For prisoners in crowed wooden huts who swallowed their meagre pittance standing up, chained companions who painstakingly reeled off these days of slavery with us …
For companions of the camp dressed in their tattered rags, against whom we have rubbed shoulders during the nevers ending roll call …
For all those who have struggled so much after rebelling against to enslavement of the Fatherland,
For us here, whose life has been spared, we are still in their debt. We know the hopes which kept them going. Implicitly we are still the guardians and we have the responsibility to realise these hopes, not only for us but to justify the martyrdom of our Fallen companions.
– Brothers that we have lost, you can count on us to carry on with the task. Together, bound by your memory, we swear to pursue the revival of the French Nation while keeping vigilant against its enemies.
– We swear we will demand that your torturers will be rightly punished and that the tyrants of our fatherland will no longer be able to harm us as long as we shall live.
– We swear that with all the means at our disposal, we will now work to bring happiness home.
– We swear that the best of our efforts will be to revitalise France from within.
– United by our firm determination and spirit of cooperation and brotherhood, we will never forget our struggle and our misery.
Against the indifference and ignorance of our fellow countrymen, we shall not forget that the Survival, we enjoyed, is ony a reprieve, which allows us to overshadow, everywhere we are, cowardice by courage, lies by Truth, pettiness by greatness. You, the departed, would never accept that we came home to portray ourselves in a mediocre way in the liberated and exhausted France !
Haunted by your recent suffering, we swear to do everything so your sacrifice would not be in vain, to become worthy of you, and be the first, so that at any moment, you could recognise us as your true companions.
You, our still very close friends, will be permanently and affectionately present in our minds and we swear to remain faithful to your memory until we die.
Text adopted on April 22nd, 1946, during the 1st National Congress of the Association of Neuengamme