Albert Dreyfuss was an officer in the French army when he was accused and convicted of treachery. Top officers later learnt that his conviction was based on falsified documents, and attempted to cover the whole mess up, which failed when it was exposed by a reporter. The controversy divided the french people, between the conservative monarchists who thought he was guilty, and the liberals who thought him innocent. Eventually he was proven innocent and returned to the army, and the conservatives were pushed to the fringes of French politics. The whole fracaca is possibly the result of anti-semitism and the large numbers of people who were fighting against it.