All posts filed under: France

The Indiscreet Charm of the Gilets Jaunes

CJ Hopkins So it appears the privatization of France isn’t going quite as smoothly as planned. As I assume you are aware, for over a month now, the gilets jaunes (or “yellow vests”), a multiplicitous, leaderless, extremely pissed off, confederation of working class persons, have been conducting a series of lively protests in cities and towns throughout the country to express their displeasure with Emmanuel Macron and his efforts to transform their society into an American-style neo-feudal dystopia. Highways have been blocked, toll booths commandeered, luxury automobiles set on fire, and shopping on the Champs-Élysées disrupted. What began as a suburban tax revolt has morphed into a bona fide working class uprising. It took a while for “the Golden Boy of Europe” to fully appreciate what was happening. In the tradition of his predecessor, Louis XVI, Macron initially responded to the gilets jaunes by inviting a delegation of Le Monde reporters to laud his renovation of the Elysée Palace, making the occasional condescending comment, and otherwise completely ignoring them. That was back in late November. …

Israel’s Failed Attempt to Start WWIII Is the Beginning of the End in Syria

by Tom Luongo, via Strategic Culture There is one thing that Israel fears more than anything else in Syria. The loss of its ability to fly its F-16’s with impunity and hit whatever targets it wants claiming defensive measures to stop Iran, their existential enemy. Israel finally admitted to carrying out over 200 such missions over the past 18 months, only a few of which ever made any kind of international media, recently. And with the sneak attack on Latakia which involved using a Russian IL-20 ELINT war plane as radar cover Israel has now not only raised the stakes to an unacceptable level, it has also ensured that this may be the last such aerial assault it will ever be able to carry out. The setup is pretty clear. Israel and France coordinated an attack on multiple targets within Syria without US involvement but with absolute US knowledge of the operation to provoke Russia into going off half-cocked by attacking the inconsequential French frigate which assisted Israel’s air attack. Any denunciation of sinister intent …

What about the Auvergne? Is Russia engaging in strategic disinfo to avoid being drawn into trap?

Catte According to an a analysis offered by Joaquin Flores on Fort Russ the recent bizarre events unfolding over Syria may have been an attempt, not simply by Israel, but also by France to draw Russia into a renewed political/diplomatic confrontation with NATO. Flores says: What the Russians claim is that Israeli craft using the Il-20 for cover ‘confused’ the SAA system and that the SAA system hit the Russian Il-20. We will explain that while this is possible, it is unlikely, and in fact the least likely of any realistic scenarios given the tremendous preparation and planning that goes into these events. The original Russian announcement about the alleged firing of missiles by the French frigate Auvergne, was always curious. The fact the two events – the alleged missile firing and the disappearance of the Il-20 – were linked by timing in the Russian announcement is not the kind of wording to be used casually when dealing with a NATO member country. The Russians would need good reason for saying something this potentially inflammatory …

Douma: Part 1 — Deception in Plain Sight

by Media Lens, April 25, 2018 UK corporate media are under a curious kind of military occupation. Almost all print and broadcast media now employ a number of reporters and commentators who are relentless and determined warmongers. Despite the long, unarguable history of US-UK lying on war, and the catastrophic results, these journalists instantly confirm the veracity of atrocity claims made against Official Enemies, while having little or nothing to say about the proven crimes of the US, UK, Israel and their allies. They shriek with a level of moral outrage from which their own government is forever spared. They laud even the most obviously biased, tinpot sources blaming the ‘Enemy’, while dismissing out of hand the best scientific researchers, investigative journalists and academic sceptics who disagree. Anyone who challenges this strange bias is branded a ‘denier’, ‘pro-Saddam’, ‘pro-Gaddafi, ‘pro-Assad’. Above all, one robotically repeated word is generated again and again: ‘Apologist… Apologist… Apologist’. Claims of a chemical weapons attack on Douma, Syria on April 7, offered yet another textbook example of this reflexive warmongering. …

The Timeline of Shame

by Thomas G. Clark, Another Angry Voice, April 16, 2018 In March 2018 the Saudi tyrant Mohammed bin Salman began a month-long tour of Western nations, securing new arms deals with Britain, the United States, and France. In early March 2018, the brutal Islamist tyrant received a warm Tory welcome in London. Against a backdrop of widespread criticism of the repressive Saudi regime and their ongoing campaign of war crimes in Yemen, Theresa May agreed a new arms deal with the Saudi regime to supply them 48 Typhoon jets. This deal was signed off by the UK government despite their full knowledge that the Saudis have been using British-manufactured weapons to commit horrific war crimes. Later that month Bin Salman rocked up in the United States to meet Donald Trump. The President of the United States demeaned his office and his nation by begging the Saudi tyrant to “share the wealth“ by buying more American-manufactured weapons. The trip concluded with a new $670 million deal to supply the repressive kingdom with anti-tank missiles and spare …

Decisive Failure Of US Forces

by South Front, April 14, 2018 Early on April 14, the US, France and the UK carried out a massive missile strike on Syria justifying their actions with the alleged involvement of the Assad government into the April 7 Douma “chemical attack”. The Russian Defense Minsitry stated that 103 cruise and air-to-surface missiles were launched on different targets across Syria adding that 71 of them were intercepted by the Syrian Air Defense Forces (SADF). “According to available information, a total of 103 cruise missiles were fired… The Syrian air defense systems basically comprising Soviet-made weapons successfully repelled the strikes by aircraft and naval ships. A total of 71 missiles were intercepted,” Head of the Russian General Staff’s Main Operations Department Colonel-General Sergei Rudskoi said. Rudskoi said that the SADF had used its S-125, S-200, Buk, Kvadrat and Osa air defense systems to repel the strike. The Syrian General Command said that the US, the UK and France had launched 110 missiles also adding that most of them were intercepted. The numbers provided raise serious questions. Some experts …

China must walk the talk and support Russia

by Ghassan Kadi , The Saker, April 12, 2018 This article was written before the most recent missile attack on Syria, carried out by the US, France, and the UK.  Its argument retains relevance. When Chinese Defence Minister, General Wei Fenghe visited Moscow on the 4th of April 2018 and made his historic comment that he was in Moscow to give a message to America that China stands by Russia (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-04/chinas-new-defence-chief-visits-russia-to-send-a-message-to-us/9616216), he put China in a new and unprecedented global position, because China had never made such direct statements about the USA since the early days of Chairman Mao; and that was a long time ago, when China was not an industrial power and an aspiring global power, and long before the rift between the USSR and Mao’s China began. A lot has changed since, and neither Russia nor China are today what they used to be a few decades ago, and as they changed, matured and developed, their relationship vis-à-vis each other and the United States seem to have gone the full circle. Today’s …

Another Europe is Needed

by Ernesto Screpanti, January 5, 2018, Lexit-Network Since the end of World War II, tribal rivalries and xenophobic sentiment in Europe have never been as strong as they are today. And this is but one of the European Union’s “successes”. Not to mention the resurrected warmongering vocation that led the Union to feed conflicts in Libya, Syria, Ukraine and, when the Union was still in the preparatory phase, to favor the explosion of devastating civil wars in Yugoslavia. Another series of “successes” has involved the social and economic sphere, with increases in unemployment, poverty, and inequality; the deterioration of labor conditions; reductions in workers’ rights; greater labor insecurity and precariousness; worsening welfare in the areas of education, health services, public utilities and social security; the proletarianization of the middle classes; rising uncertainty and, last but not least, the threatening of household savings by a predatory financial sector. Meanwhile, the process of convergence of the national economies, prophesied by the founding fathers as one of the most important effects of the Union, turned out to be …

The Single-party French State

by Diana Johnstone, via Counterpunch French legislative elections follow hard on the heels of the Presidential election.  The momentum virtually ensures a presidential majority.  So it was taken for granted that voters would give President Emmanuel Macron a docile parliament for his five-year mandate. But these elections were exceptional.  The victory of Macron’s personal party, la République En Marche (REM), is novel in several ways.  Not only has REM won an absolute majority of 350 out of 577 seats in the National Assembly.  REM’s victory has also bled the two traditional governing parties, the Republicans and the Socialists, perhaps fatally. With over 130 seats, the Republican Party of former President Nicolas Sarkozy and its allies came in second, and thus ranks as leading opposition party.  But since Macron successfully lured two Republican politicians into prominent positions in his government – Edouard Philippe as Prime Minister and Bruno LeMaire as Economics Minister – it is hard even for the Republicans’ current leader, François Baroin, to explain just what they will oppose.  How can they be a …

According to Emmanuel Macron, the days of popular sovereignty are over

by Thierry Meyssan, September 5, 2017, via VoltaireNet Delivering a keynote speech before the most senior of French diplomats, President Macron revealed his conception of the world and the way in which he intends to use the tools at his disposal. According to him, there will be no more popular sovereignty, neither in France, nor in Europe, and therefore no more national or supra-national democracies. Neither will there be any more collective interest, no more Republic, but an ill-defined catalogue of things and ideas which compose the common good. Describing their new programme of work to the ambassadors, he informed them that they should no longer defend the values of their country, but find opportunities to act in the name of the European Leviathan. Entering into the details of certain conflicts, he described a programme of economic colonisation of the Levant and Africa. Participating in the traditional Ambassadors’ Week, President Macron gave his first general speech on foreign policy since his arrival at the Elysée Palace [1]. In this article, all the quotations in inverted commas …

All Power to the Banks: The Winners-take-all Regime of Emmanuel Macron

by Diana Johnstone, via Counterpunch A ghost of the past was the real winner of the French presidential election.  Emmanuel Macron won only because a majority felt they had to vote against the ghost of “fascism” allegedly embodied by his opponent, Marine Le Pen.  Whether out of panic or out of the need to feel respectable, the French voted two to one in favor of a man whose program most of them either ignored or disliked.  Now they are stuck with him for five years. If people had voted on the issues, the majority would never have elected a man representing the trans-Atlantic elite totally committed to “globalization”, using whatever is left of the power of national governments to weaken them still further, turning over decision-making to “the markets” – that is, to international capital, managed by the major banks and financial institutions, notably those located in the United States, such as Goldman-Sachs. The significance of this election is so widely misrepresented that clarification requires a fairly thorough explanation, not only of the Macron project, …

Nicolas Sarkozy: “No Way To Let The French Colonies Of Africa Have Their Own Currencies!”

by Matthew, via How Africa In an interview with the BMTV television channel, [former president of France] said that the best way to preserve the health of the French economy is to keep the FCFA as the only currency usable in the former French colonies in Africa. France can not allow its former colonies to create their own currency to have total control over their central banks . If this happens, it would be a catastrophe for the public treasury that will lead France to the rank of 20th world economic power. There is no question, therefore, of letting the French colonies of Africa have their own currencies What is the CFA Franc? The CFA franc is the name of two currencies common to several African countries, partly comprising the Central African franc zone (CEMAC) and the franc zone of West Africa ( UEMOA). How does the CFA Franc work? Principle 4 is the most technical. First, it should be noted that the Banque de France opens an account for each central bank (one for …

Reflections on the counter-revolution in France

ne of the more significant features of the recent French Presidential election was the widespread predictability of the outcome. It was taken for granted that the establishment, cardboard cut-out, hologram candidate – Macron – representing the alt-centre, would win the final electoral contest against Madame Le Pen by a comfortable margin; and so it turned out, Macron winning by 66% to Le Pen’s 34% of votes cast. Okay, there was a widespread abstention amounting to 25% of the registered electorate, a 10% spoliation of ballot papers, and, in addition, tactical voting against Le Pen in the second-round run-off.

French Election Hack: What do we know so far…

More elections. More hacking. The same headlines with slightly different words. This time it’s in France. This time the “victim” is Emmanuel Macron. The “outsider”, “independent” candidate, a man who completely unexpectedly rose to political prominence on the back of nothing more than a career in high-finance and a platform of telling rich people exactly what they wanted to hear. So what questions does this new hack raise? Firstly, what do we know? So far, not much. The information itself may well be meaningless. Like so many leaks, dumps and hacks there is a glut of data…plus it is all in French, so most UK/US based alternate media will have to be patient with translations. Scanning through it is like panning for gold. It will take dedicated internet users months to sift it all…and in the end there may be no nuggets at all, just a bunch of mud. Perhaps a more interesting question is – “why now?” The “hack” (as it is being called, historically speaking it is far more likely a “leak”), was …

Graun celebrates Macron’s avowal to despoil working people, wreck infrastructure & enrich banking class

by Catte Macron is more Obama than Obama. More Blair than Blair. A creation, groomed and glossed for this “spontaneous” bid for power by the banking class he unashamedly represents. The Guardian unsurprisingly has numerous pieces (comments-disallowed) pushing this glibly smiling drone as the Saviour of France. Here’s an example to give you a flavour. All predictable and barely worth discussion. But one of the pieces has a little blue sidebar summarising their darling’s policies and position, which so completely encapsulates the destruction of meaning in political language we are currently witnessing that it should be noted. Here is a screen cap: You see, the Guardian defines itself as a “centrist/liberal Left” outlet, so, of course it supports “liberal Left” polices. How does it do this and still be the paper of record for Wall Street and the neocons? Easy. It just plays Humpty Dumpty and redefines what words actually mean. Here is what “centrist/liberal Left”, as encapsulated by Macron’s policies, now means for the Graun and the class it represents: 1) ”REMAKE THE FAILED …

France’s election at gunpoint

from Defend Democracy Press The first round of the elections in France is being held against the backdrop of an attempt by the state and the media to use the violent incident on the Champs Elysées, involving a gunman who is alleged to have been acting on behalf of ISIS, to create an atmosphere of political hysteria. With over 50,000 soldiers and policemen set to deploy to polling stations tomorrow, the elections are to be held at gunpoint. As facts emerge about the background of the alleged gunman, it is virtually impossible not to conclude that this shooting was a provocation involving elements of the security forces, over half of whom plan to vote for Marine Le Pen’s neo-fascist National Front (FN). Karim Cheurfi, a French citizen and career criminal, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2003 for shooting and nearly killing two policemen, but later released on appeal, was last arrested in February after demanding weapons and stating he wanted to kill policemen. He was released supposedly because the “level of …

The Encirclement of China is Well Underway: France Prepares to Lead EU Missions in the South China Sea

by Asia-Pacific Research The naval encirclement of China is well underway. It was started over a decade ago by the United States with the re-militarization of Japan and the tightening of Washington’s military partnerships with countries like Australia and South Korea. The same is true about the missile shield being erected in South Korea, which targets China, Russia, and North Korea. The excerpts that will follow are taken from a 14 July 2016 article written by Yo-Jung Chen, a Japanese-educated naturalized French diplomat that immigrated to France from Taiwan. The retired French diplomat wrote the article in The Diplomat seeking to justify the deployment of the French military into the South China Sea. Coming from a retired French diplomat who was stationed in Asia, the article offers some interesting insights. Aside from his post as the deputy consul of the French Consulate-General in San Francisco, Yo-Jung’s Chinese background helped qualify him as the press attaché for the French Embassy in China and deputy consul at the French Embassy in Singapore. Yo-Jung Chen misleadingly identifies “Chinese aggression” as …

The European War Union

We’re reposting, in full, a June 28, 2016 report on the newly announced plans for the formation of an EU army (with “employable high-readiness forces” and “standing maritime forces”) by the German Foreign Policy, a group that monitors and analyzes foreign policy developments in Germany and the EU.   The report focuses on “A Strong Europe in a World of Uncertainties,” the joint position paper by Germany’s Frank-Walter Steinmeier and France’s Jean-Marc Ayrault.   The publication of their joint position paper came after previous press reports of plans for the merging of German and Dutch forces, as well as those of the Czech Republic. Together with his French counterpart, the German foreign minister has announced the EU’s transformation to become a “political union” and its resolute militarization for global military operations.  In a joint position paper, Frank-Walter Steinmeier (SPD) and Jean-Marc Ayrault (PS) are calling for the EU’s comprehensive military buildup, based on a division of labor, to enable future global military operations.  Following the Brexit, the EU should, step-by-step, become an “independent” and “global” actor.  …

Threatened Forests: a new look at “green energy”

Threatened forests’ explores some hidden realities behind “green energy” in the EU. Filmmaker Benoit Grimont made this documentary as a response to the development of a large scale biomass electricity installation in Gardanne, southern France. His film discovers that renewable energy – heavily supported by EU countries – may not be anything like as ‘green’ as we are led to believe.

How the EU pushed France to ‘reforms’ of labour law

by Corporate Europe Observatory The current struggle in France over labour law reforms is not just between the Government and trade unions – a European battle is waged. The attacks on social rights stem in no small part from the web of EU-rules dubbed ‘economic governance’, invented to impose austerity policies on member states. Strikes and actions across France against reforms of the country’s labour protections, known as the El Khomri Law, demonstrate the immense unpopularity of the measures proposed by the French Government. Chiefly among them, to give preference to local agreements on wages and working conditions, when the conditions in those agreements are less favourable than the national norm inscribed in national law. This is an open attempt to undermine collective bargaining and roll back the influence of trade unions. Ultimately, the French Government has formal responsibility for the weakening of labour protection. But there is no denying that the European Union is playing an important and perhaps decisive role in the attacks on labour rights. What we see is the EU throwing …