Posts Tagged ‘France’
FN Appeals to Left Sovereigntist Intellectuals.
At the end of September the Front National launched an appeal to “left-wing intellectuals” meeting at the Mutualité (home of large public meetings, roughly a version as the Friends Meeting House in London) held by the weekly, Marianne. Around the philosopher Michel Onfray, Régis Debray, Alain Finkielkraut, Jean-François Kahn Jean-Pierre Chevènement are to speak.
Under the name of Bertrand Dutheil de La Rochère, the Front National launched, on the 24th of September, an appeal to these people (More details of the background: Le FN lance un appel à “Michel Onfray et ses soutiens”)
Your meeting of 20 October 2015 could be more than an amiable and friendly get together. It could become one of those crucial dates in the history of France. It could be the prelude to the union of the people of France. It is up to you to decide to open an inclusive discussion between all patriots, all Republicans, all sovereignists. Of course, the self-righteous will deliver anathemas and excommunications. It will be for us to despise the prohibitions laid down by the media-political caste.
The basis of this appeal is on “sovereignty” – that is the defence of the French nation’s power, through its own political institutions to make ‘its’ own decisions.
On this ground there should be, the FN asserts, some degree of common thinking.
The call is for a “une discussion entre tous les patriotes, tous les républicains, tous les souverainistes, sans exclusive.”
Open debate between all patriots, all republicans, all sovereigntists, with no exclusions.
As La Rochère says
Vous dénoncerez la trahison de tous ces partis qui se réclament encore de la gauche. Ils ont choisi la mondialisation ultra libérale au nom de l’Europe. Ils confondent désormais l’internationalisme avec les migrations massives qui pèsent sur les salaires et qui démantèlent la protection sociale. Ils ont oublié d’où vient l’insulte « jaune » que proféraient autrefois les syndicalistes ouvriers contre les briseurs de grève.
You will denounce the treason of the parties who still claim to be on the left. They have chosen ultra-liberal globalisation in the name of Europe. They have confused internationalism with the massive migrations which weigh on the wage earners and which erode social legislation. They forget the origin of the insult “jaune” (yellow) which trade unions used to throw at strike breakers.
I am at a loss here.
One theory is that Jaune comes from a strike of 1899 at Montceau-les-Mines (Saône-et-Loire) used against a small group of miners, who refused to join in. The strikers smashed the windows of their meeting place, le Café de la mairie. The windows were replaced with yellow paper. Another theory is that comes from the dye colour (sulfur) of strike breakers at another disputes in 1970.
I would however bet, with the degree of possibility bordering on certainty, that the Front National meant……Chinese…..
There has been a great deal of debate about this appeal.
Those addressed have rejected the idea that they should engage actively with the FN.
Nevertheless it’s not hard to see that Régis Debray’s essay Éloge des frontières (2011), to cite one example (his writings on the Nation go back to the 1980s), indicates at least some meeting points on nationalism and the fear of cosmopolitanism and not only globalisation. Alain Finkielkraut signed the petition this year Touche pas à mon église – a protest against turning churches into Mosques, in actual fact a phenomenon confined to a handful of buildings – with strong echoes of Maurice Barrès’s defence of “la terre et les morts.” Chevènement has developed a patriotism and a paranoia about the Euro. He has come a long away (as has Debray) from his left-wing days in the 1970s. Jean-François Kahn who founded Marianne has preferred to accuse the liberal supporters of globalisation ignoring the social issues that have given rise to the FN, and distance himself from any complicity with either the FN (Qui fait le jeu du Front national ?) In short, Kahn would say that excluding the far-right from the national debate is not the way to deal with Marine Le Pen……
Michel Onfray – a home-spun philosopher, known in the anglophone world as an atheist, a hedonist (in the classical sense) but also a libertarian leftist, if not anarchist – has given a greater variety of contradictory responses than Bernard Henri-Lévy on a bad day.
Having read Onfray’s Traité d’Athéologie (2005), which offers a clear attack on the use of religion in politics, from Catholicism to Islamism, I can only contrast it with the utter confusion of his more recent tomes assembled under the name of La contre histoire de la philosophie (2006 onwards), which barely bear skimming.
The latest in the Onfray saga is in the Nouvel Observateur this week: Onfray : “Mon problème, c’est ceux qui rendent Marine Le Pen possible”
Last week a local councillor, François Meunier, Antony (Hauts-de-Seine) left the Front de Gauche and joined the Front National.
Of more importance was the turn in August of the economist, Jacques Sapir, from the Front de gauche to the Front National. Sapir is a sovereigntist. He has called for left-right unity around opposition to the Euro – a call perhaps not without echoes in the United Kingdom (Quand un économiste souverainiste “de gauche” drague le Front National.)
It is important to underline that it is this issue of the ‘Nation’ as the ground of the Republic which acts as a meeting point between ‘left’ and far-Right. That is not ‘migration’ as such, not race, and certainly not Laïcité.
On the racial issue a more traditional alignment between Right and Extreme-Right has taken place in the last week when one of Sarkozy’s politicians, Nadine Morano, was removed from a regional election for asserting that France is a country of the “white race”.
Perhaps most significant is the way the Front National has entered the intellectual arena.
This was confirmed a couple days in way that drew the attention of the Financial Times.
France’s National Front (FN), long a pariah on leading university campuses, has secured the right to create a political group at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po), underlining the resurgent far-right party’s willingness to enter the circles of the French elite.
The newly formed group quickly obtained the 120 votes required to gain validation from the prestigious institute during a four-day “recognition” process of all student associations.
It will co-exist with other political groups, including the Socialist party, the centre-right Republicans party and the far-left Front de Gauche.
“The National Front has made a deafening entry at Sciences Po,” tweeted Marine Le Pen, the party’s leader.
The creation of an FN-linked organisation at Sciences Po, a school whose students traditionally lean to the left and whose alumni include the last five French presidents, reflects Ms Le Pen’s desire to become more mainstream. By doing so, she is breaking from her father and FN founder Jean-Marie Le Pen, who positioned the party as an outsider on the fringes of French politics.
Emmanuel Todd: Loathes Charlie Hebdo, Now Warns of European ‘Suicide’.
The Guardian loves France.
The France of a Year in Provence, and now, the film of Posy Simmond’s Gemma Bovray.
The Guardian hates France.
The France of secularism, of a left that is for ever rubbing the liberal warm feelings of the majority of its eceumentical readership.
The Guardian has an ignoble history of printing violent attacks on the secularist satirists of Charlie Hebdo.
After the murders at the Weekly, and at the Hyper Cacher Seamus Milne, former Comments Editor at the paper, stated of its cartoons, “This wasn’t just “depictions” of the prophet, but repeated pornographic humiliation.” Milne put the blame for the attacks down to Western policy in the Middle East and the ‘war on terror’ – no doubt a serious warning to Bangladesh to cease its imperialist ambitions there if it wants to end the slaughter of secularist bloggers.
Now they have found Emmanuel Todd to stand as proxies for their campaign against the militant leftist secularist Charlie.
The printed article below contains a reference to Todd’s La Chute finale (1976), a study which predicted that the Soviet Union would decompose. He has been living off the reputation it gave him as a seer since 1989. Indeed (this is unlikely to be a coincidence) le Monde gave the book a favourable mention a few weeks ago (Emmanuel Todd, la fin de l’étoile rouge).
He is a ‘demographer’. Todd’s central theme is that changes in family structures (nuclear, extended) are related to economic and political change. His most famous claim is that “nuclear” families are the oldest form. We not competent in this field, but one be assured that his ideas are not ‘universally’ accepted.
Todd is the kind of French essayist, or polemicist, who churns out a yearly book on a “controversial” subject every year. Less repetitive than Régis Debray, but always, always, contrarian.
InL’Illusion économique : Essai sur la stagnation des sociétés développées, 1998. Todd advocated “Intelligent protectionism”.
Après l’empire : Essai sur la décomposition du système américain, (2002) is an extended essay on the title.
This recent statement (11.7.2015) should give pause for thought to those on the left, or to liberals, rushing to adopt Todd’s views on Charlie Hebdo,
Europe is “contrôlée par l’Allemagne et par ses satellites baltes, polonais, etc” et qu’elle est “devenue un système hiérarchique, autoritaire”. “On est en train sans doute d’assister à la troisième autodestruction de l’Europe”, estime-t-il, rappelant les précédentes : “Il y a d’abord eu la guerre de 14, puis la deuxième guerre mondiale.” Il en conclut que “l’Europe est un continent qui, au XXe siècle, de façon cyclique, se suicide sous direction allemande.”
Europe is controlled by Germany and its Baltic and Polish (etc) satellites” and it has “become an authoritarian and hierarchical system. ” “we are without doubt witnessing the third self-destruction of Europe, “he asserted, referring to the historical precedents, “First there was the 1914 war, then the second world war.” He concluded, “Europe is a continent which, in the 20th century committed suicide under German leadership.”
This year Todd published a book, and articles, attacking the massive wave of solidarity, mass demonstrations and commemorations for Charlie and the victims of the Hyper Cacher.
Now we have this in English.
The article’s main theme is this: “The street demonstrations were the self-glorification of the French middle class. That made me explode.”
With customary modesty he begins with,
…what he called his own “magnificently crafted Exocet missile” at the nation, with a book arguing that the street rallies were a giant lie.
This is the missile:
The rallies, he argued, were not what they claimed to be – an admirable coming-together of people from different ethnic, religious and social backgrounds standing up for tolerance – but an odious display of middle-class domination, prejudice and Islamophobia. To Todd, they represented “a sudden glimpse of totalitarianism”. These “sham” demonstrations, he claimed, were made up of a one-sided elite who wanted to spit on Islam, the religion of a weak minority in France. The working class and the children of immigrants had been notably absent, he said. The most enthusiastic demonstrations, he decided, had occurred in the country’s most historically Catholic and reactionary regions, an affirmation of the middle class’s moral superiority and domination, and their Islamophobic quest for a scapegoat.
Todd’s central argument is that there are fundamentally two Frances. There is a “central” France, including Paris and Marseille and the Mediterranean, where there is equality on the family level and a deep-rooted attachment to secular values of the French revolution and the republic. Then there is a France of the periphery, for example, the west or cities such as Lyon, which has stayed true to the old Catholic bedrock, where people may no longer be practising Catholics, but they’re still infused with all the social conservatism of that Catholicism, its hierarchies and inequality. He calls this “zombie Catholicism”. Infuriating his critics, Todd maintains that the post-attack rallies represented zombie Catholicism on the march.
The pro-Charlie Bloc (bloc MAZ, Middle class, Aged and Zombies) is given a fuller analysis in French (oddly….discussion of two parts of it are missing in the Guardian article – although written by a respected French journalist).
Its ideology is:
- « européiste », par son soutien à Maastricht en 1992 et à la Constitution européenne de 2005 ; Pro-European, backing the Maastricht Treaty and the European constitution,
- islamophobe, au vu de la diffusion d’une « obsession de l’Islam » dans la presse papier, du succès des livres d’Éric Zemmour et de la relégation des attentats de l’hypercacher au second plan du mouvement des « Je suis Charlie » Islamophobic, related to the racist rantings of Zemmour who wants to expel all Muslims from Europe.
- germanophile, par sa défense du « modèle allemand » que la France devrait imiter à tout prix. Germanophile, defending the German model, which they want France to defend at any cost.
It would be interesting to know how he found statistical evidence for the Je Suis Charlie marchers’ support – or even readership – of Zemmour.
Readers of the introduction above will note that Todd is, by pure coincidence, anti-European and something of a Germanophobe.
The statistics he used to bolster this analysis have been rigorously unpicked.
Joliveau questions, rightly, if you built a picture of the sociology mass demonstrations of public concern by aligning them to their geographical origin. Can one find evidence of this, “mystérieux indicateur de zombitude catholique” and transfer this to those who turned up on rallies? Nothing is less certain. The tie with Catholicism is even less clear. he notes, “Une légère sur-participation à la manifestation dans les villes de tradition catholique semble confirmée mais il est moins justifié par un traitement statistique que par une typologie du recul du christianisme que Todd sort un peu de son chapeau.” there is a slight over-representation of demos in Towns and Cities with a Catholic tradition appears confirmed, but is less justified by a statistical alignment with the retreat of Catholicism, which Todd has rather pulled out of his hat.
Joliveau also points out, by way of how you can shape statistics, in this lengthy and detailed examination, that you can equally draw a correlation between the areas where there were fewer demonstrations and zones where there are high numbers of low paid, unqualified and unemployed people, and supporters of the Front National.
What is clear is that there was a link between those with higher education and support for Charlie on the marches (les diplômés de l’enseignement supérieur court ou long).
There is a little doubt that there are a lot of (self-evident) indications this is true.
Is Todd saying that educated people – that is by definition those likely to read left-wing satirical magazines and are concerned about issues such as freedom of expression and (not the least!) defend a hard-line secularist weekly– are ‘Catholic zombies”.
That the scores of immigrant associations who backed the protests are all ‘Islamophobes’ is less certain.
The idea is so incoherent that it is barely worth considering.
His theory is that the rise in Islamophobia is in turn stoking anti semitism in run-down suburbs, and that anti semitism is growing in the middle class.
Presumably the same middle class that worshiped Charlie…..
We stood up, with millions across the world, for Charlie with every fibre of our being.
Todd can dislike the vulgar and 68er Charlie as much as he like.
He can engage in Anglo-American language about being careful not to offend religious sensitiveness.
As Joliveau says, the support was a “Symbole non d’un collectif, mais d’un rassemblement d’individus ayant chacun leur propre raison d’être là avec les autres.”
We all had our own reasons to show our sorrow, our internationalism, our solidarity and our love.
We are certainly not anti-Euro, protectionist nationalists like Todd.
We are not surprised that Polity Press is publishing a translation of this book.
Unlike pro-Charlie writings, (see the Tendance’s review of Charb’s pamphlet), it will not doubt be on university courses.
Note: this is another demolition of Todd’s statistics: Un esprit de système caricatural Les catégorisations opérées par Emmanuel Todd et son déterminisme sociologique sont discutables.
Tariq Ali : Plenty of Books, Should Brush up his French.
The crisis faced by Greece is extremely serious.
The international left, and in particular the European Left, has expressed solidarity with the Alexis Tsipras and the Syriza-led government.
We expect that there will be criticism from the fringes against their strategy.
We support, absolutely, the British Greece Solidarity Campaign.
But there is one person, the ageing sage of Highgate, and Norfolk Lord of the Manor, who cannot resist the opportunity to use the drama facing Greece to pursue his personal vendettas.
In this case against Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the leader of the French Parti de gauche and a staunch secularist (the latter playing a big part in Ali’s reaction).
Reading yesterday’s Le Monde in an Athens cafe I saw two long articles. Habermas denouncing Syriza for being nationalist and defending the EU and praising MarioDraghi, etc. A long interview with Melenchon arguing against Syriza defaulting because it would hurt FRENCH banks. I had heard that Melenchon was in a state of degeneration but hadn’t realised that the political cancer had affected his brain. The sooner this imbecile is replaced by his group, the better.
Now there are many reasons to be criticise Mélenchon (if Ali is going to pose as an expert in French politics the accent would seem obligatorily) .
This range from his personal behaviour which is not always very amiable, though personally I find his use of the word ‘connard’ often merited. to his vaunting as a model the alliance between his party, citizens’ groups and the Greens (EELV) in Grenoble (which has just privatised the town’s street lighting). There is also his belief that the French left needs a form of populist left not dissimilar to Podemos. This, he indicates, should be led by a bold-thinking leader, whose identity I am sure everyone can guess.
Recently another reason to be wary of the former French Presidential candidate (2012, 11.05%), a bit more than Ali’s (0,9%) in Southall in 1979, Mélenchon has been strongly criticised for his pamphlet, le Hareng de Bismark, which attacks the German “poison” (an oh-so-funny pun on “poisson”, fish) infecting European politics (see: Quand le pamphlet anti-allemand de Mélenchon agace. Maurice Szafran.
But to our knowledge Mélenchon has always expressed absolute support for Syriza.
As indeed he did in the Le Monde article Ali half-read, where he laid the blame for the present Greek predicament on…….Germany.
La responsabilité intégrale du danger repose sur Merkel et Schäuble [la chancelière et le ministre des finances allemands], qui ont parié sur la tension et l’inertie de Hollande.
The complete responsibility for the danger (facing Greece TC) lies with Merkel and Schäuble (German Minister of Finaces), who have relied on the tensions facing Hollande (French President) and his inertia.
He indicated, simply, that France would also suffer from the results of forcing Greece into a corner, and into destitution.
Al in other words, confused the observation that that this would have a bad effect on French banks, with an argument that this was the reason why Mélenchon was worried about a Greek default.
Or maybe the French was simply too much for the Counterpunch puffer to grasp.
Yesterday Mélenchon issued an argument appeal for France to support the Greek government: Mélenchon à Hollande sur la Grèce: “Tu ne peux pas laisser faire ça.
So, if there is anybody who has “degenerated” it is “Tariq – “Charlie Hebdo had it coming to them” – Ali.
Though – to pursue our own long-standing feud – his politics have been falling apart for some time now: Punish the warmongers: vote Lib Dem Tariq Ali. (2007 Red Pepper).
Solidarity with our Sisters and Brothers Fighting the Islamist Murderers .
1530 Ministry of Health confirms 28 dead and 39 injured. Nationalities involved are French, German, Russian, Belgian and British.
1513 British, German and Belgian tourists are among the dead according to agency reports
1443 Among those transferred to hospital are British and Germans
1434 Second gunman captured by police
1415 Retired General Mokhtar Ben Nasser said: “This type of terrorist attack was expected and is intended to the tourist industry. Beji Caid Essebsi and Habib Essid to visit Sousse.
1400 Six Nationalities among dead according to Ministry of Interior.
Gunmen have attacked two tourist hotels in the Tunisian town of Sousse.
Reports claim that a man entered the hotel armed with a kalashnikov rifle and opened fire on tourists shortly before lunchtime.
Meanwhile another gunman opened fire at holidaymakers in another hotel adjacent to the shoreline resort.
Ministry of Interior spokesperson Mohamed Ali Alaroui confirmed that at least 27 people have killed.
At least one gunman has been killed, according to security sources cited by the Reuters news agency.
The other gunman has since been apprehended and is being held in police custody.
France has begun a terror investigation after a decapitated body was found at the scene of a suspected Islamist attack on a US-owned gas factory near the south-eastern city of Lyon.
One arrested man suspected to have rammed a car into the factory had been investigated over possible ties to Islamist radicals, officials said.President Francois Hollande said the aim was to blow up the factory
Officials say the decapitated person was a local businessman.
His head was found on a post at the gates to the Air Products gas factory in Saint-Quentin-Fallavier, some 40km (25 miles) from Lyon.
Mr Hollande said the decapitated body had “inscriptions” on it. The French interior minister said: “A flag with Arabic writing on it was found at the scene”.
Fighters with the Islamic State, or ISIS, are holding at least 50 hostages inside a besieged hospital in the Syrian city of Kobani in the aftermath of Thursday’s attack on the Kurdish city, a Rudaw reporter inside the city has said. Rudaw
According to the London based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) and journalists on the ground, the death toll in Kobanê has reached 146.
The massacre carried out by ISIS gangs on Kobanê has left 146 mostly civilians, women and children, dead according to SOHR. 120 people injured in the suicide attacks in the town centre of Kobanê have died in hospital. 72 civilians were massacred in the Halnaj area of while the others were from the Maqtala neighbourhood. Of the 200 wounded some are still in critical condition and it is feared the death toll could rise.
The number of people who were executed in the village of Berx Botan located near the town of Serrin south of Kobanê has risen to 26, including children and women, while others were wounded too, some of them in critical situation.
This is the second-largest massacre perpetrated by ISIS gangs since the declaration of its alleged ‘caliphate’.
26 June 2015
Kurds and their friends around the world are coming out onto the streets to condemn the attacks by ISIS gangs on innocent civilians in Kobanê. The multiple attacks on 25 June have already claimed the lives of 146 people, mostly women and children and wounded over 200.
There have already been demonstrations in Copenhagen, Paris and Saarbrucken. Demonstrations in other major European cities are being planned after the Democratic Kurdish Society Congress of Europe made a declaration calling people to come out onto the streets to condemn, uncover and take a stand against ISIS and the powers behind them.
Many of the demonstrations are targeted at the Turkish state for its support of the ISIS gangs. Many sources are claiming that the ISIS gangs who perpetrated the massacre crossed over from the Turkey border into Rojava (Northern Syria) and were allowed passage by the Turkish state.
Our Sisters and Brothers Massacred by the Islamic State/ISIS.
According to reports from journalists in Kobane the multiple and co-ordinated attacks by ISIS gangs who crossed into the city from the Turkey border has left 42 people dead and 55 wounded.
22 civilians were massacred in the city centre and 55 were wounded while over 20 people were executed in their homes in the village of Berx Botan 30km to the south of Kobanê. There is no information about the 5 families kidnapped by the gangs to use as human shields.
The operation carried out against the attackers by by the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and Asayish (security) forces is ongoing. 11 gang members were killed in the Azadi square in the centre of Kobanê.
Claims that the ISIS gangs crossed over from Jarablus rather than the Turkey border have been refuted by the Kobanê Canton administration. There is no crossing from Jarablus into Kobanê because the bridge that connected the two areas was blown up by ISIS gangs recently.
A second attack was carried out later in the morning (5.15am) at Turkey’s Mursitpinar border gate to Kobane and a truck was blown up.
A demonstration is being held in London at 13.00 in front of the Turkish Embassy on Friday 26 June.
French Demonstration: Massacres commis par Daesh à Kobanê, avec le soutien de la Turquie. Friday 26 June 18h, Place de la République
Ripping Good Fun from Dominique Strauss-Kahn.
The UK’s reputation as the leading Clown Country – the home of stars like Asghar Bukhari (Zionists ate my shoe) and George Galloway (Mia-ow!) -faces stiff competition from Dominique Strauss-Kahn today.
France 24 reports,
Disgraced former IMF boss and one-time French presidential hopeful Dominique Strauss-Kahn made a bizarre public debut Sunday on Twitter, the go-to social network for politicians, pop stars and journalists.
“Hello Twitter! Jack is back,” the once hugely popular Socialist politician declared on his (verified) Twitter account.
His inaugural post has since been retweeted 2,400 times (1) and he has already garnered 20,000 followers since creating his account.
Known by his initials DSK in France, Strauss-Kahn was seen as France’s best shot for president in the 2012 election, won by fellow Socialist François Hollande.
But his bid for the presidency was scuppered in May 2011 when a New York hotel maid accused him of sexual assault, an incident that destroyed his political ambitions and forced him to step down as head of the IMF.
His alleged victim Nafissatou Diallo dropped charges in the civil case against DSK when he settled out of court for an undisclosed sum. But his legal woes and the damage to his reputation didn’t end there.
In July 2011 journalist Tristane Banon filed a legal complaint against DSK, claiming he had attempted to rape her, but French prosecutors later dropped the charges for lack of evidence.
DSK was also hauled through the courts on charges of “aggravated pimping” in the so-called “Carlton Affair” trial, during which his lurid sexual proclivities – including Viagra-fuelled group sex romps – were enthusiastically reported.
Strauss-Kahn admitted taking part in orgies, but denied knowing that the participants were paid prostitutes and was cleared on June 12 of any criminal wrongdoing.
If “Jack is back”, the French are certainly paying attention.
The Independent signals,
One anonymous contributor to the Le Monde website pointed out that “jack” had a particular meaning in the Urban Dictionary, an on-line compilation of streetwise slang. “ JACK=Highly Attractive and Sexually Intriguing Individual. An Ultimate Sex God.”
Here is what was said, (le Monde )
Urban Dictionary: JACK=Highly Attractive and Sexually Intriguing Individual. An “Ultimate Sex God” …C’est tout à fait ça! :D … J’invite mes amis lecteurs à se familiariser avec le slang. http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Jack (definition “4”) La 6 est pas mal non plus…
My bet is that DSK would also like this definition of Jack (Urban Dictionary).
The hottest most sexiest guy on the planet. a real comedian, but sometimes doesn’t stop talking. has the hottest eyes, hair, and body. a swimmer.I love jack!
Toilet in Ireland. Usually the gent’s toilet. Usually covered in piss maybe with a shite in the urinal. Accompanied by humorous and often informative graffiti.
L’Express airs other theories,
It’s a reference to a restaurant in the town of Ocre, le Jack is back.
It’s a reference to the film L.A. Confidential, in which Kevin Spacey, as Jack Vincennes, ‘comes back’ to fight again.
Other theories include Jack Sparrow (Johnny Deep, Pirates of the Caribbean), Jack the Ripper…..and so it goes.
(1) At present (15.52) it’s 3,800 retweets and 32.900 followers.
Femen Protest Disrupt French Far-Right May Day Rally.
Femen crashes Marine Le Pen’s May Day Front National speech. (Deutsche Welle)
Three Femen activists have disrupted Marine Le Pen’s planned May Day speech in Paris, with slogans like “Heil Le Pen” and “Stop Fascism” painted on their bare chests. Le Pen’s father played an uninvited cameo role too.
A Marine Le Pen speech designed as an attack on her political rivals in France was hijacked both by feminist activists and by Le Pen’s 86-year-old father on Friday.
Three Femen members, topless with slogans criticizing Le Pen’s Front National (FN) party on their chests and backs, gained access to the balcony from which the FN leader was speaking. They unfurled two large banners reading “Heil Le Pen” and stood side-by-side carrying out a Nazi salute.
Reports indicate that the Femen activists were initially removed by the staff of the Hotel where they had begun their protest and then violently assaulted by the Front National’s ‘Service d’ordre’ (Libération)
Selon l’avocat des Femen, interrogé par France TV Info, les activistes vont porter plainte contre X pour «violences, violation de domicile et arrestation arbitraire». De son côté, le FN a promis une plainte contre les Femen pour «violences volontaires» et «atteintes à a liberté de manifeste».
According to the lawyer of Femen, speaking to France TV Info, the activists will begin legal proceedings against ‘X’ for “violence, violation of their home (that is, having paid for the Hotel room), and arbitrary arrest. For their part the Front National has also made a legal complaint against the Femen protesters for ‘deliberate violence’ and ‘ damage to the freedom to demonstrate’.
Journalists were also caught up in the mêlée.
Some have accused the Front National of manhandling and punching them.
Charb: Took Advantage of Own Death to Make Money, Says New Statesman Writer.
These are some extracts (adapted) from the book she is referring to:
“Racism and not of Islamophobia“The term ‘Islamophobia’ is badly chosen to designate the hatred that some cretins have of Muslims. It is not only badly chosen but it is also also dangerous.”Charb wrote:”Communitarian activists try to impose on the judicial and political authorities the notion of ‘Islamophobia’. This has no other purpose than to push the victims of racism to assert that they are Muslims (…) If tomorrow all French Muslims converted to Catholicism or abandoned their religion, this would not change the main racist discourse: that foreigners or those who are French but of foreign origin are and will be always be held responsible for every kind of fault. “
“The Qu’ran or the Bible does not read like Ikea assembly instructions”
If he criticised the term “Islamophobia” Charb recognised that there is indeed a fear of Islam. But if this worry is “absurd”, it “is not a crime,” he said.
“The problem is not the Koran or the Bible, which are sleep-inducing, incoherent and poorly written novels. The problem comes from a believer who reads the Qur’an or the Bible as if they were the instructions of an Ikea shelf-kit.”
The author also believed that racist speech was unclenched under the presidency of Nicolas Sarkozy and his ‘debate’ on national identity:
“When the highest authority in the State said (in effect) to every moron and fool, “say what you want, you lot’, what do you think these morons and fool will do? They began to say out loud what they had been content to yell at the end of every, well-oiled, family meal. “
Francois-Cerrah has a very different book on the “soporific” romance of the Qur’an.
“The Qur’an was pivotal for me. I first tried to approach it in anger, as part of an attempt to prove my Muslim friend wrong. Later I began reading it with a more open mind. The opening of Al-Fatiha, with its address to the whole of mankind, psychologically stopped me in my tracks. It spoke of previous scriptures in a way which I both recognised, but also differed. It clarified many of the doubts I had about Christianity. It made me an adult as I suddenly realised that my destiny and my actions had consequences for which I alone would now be held responsible. In a world governed by relativism, it outlined objective moral truths and the foundation of morality. As someone who’d always had a keen interest in philosophy, the Qur’an felt like the culmination of all of this philosophical cogitation. It combined Kant, Hume, Sartre and Aristotle. It somehow managed to address and answer the deep philosophical questions posed over centuries of human existence and answer its most fundamental one, ‘why are we here?'”
We knew that she is one of the brigade of vultures who said of flocked around the attack on Charlie.
As she wrote in the New Statesman on January the 9th.
….they mocked the sacred symbols of many groups, but those of Muslims on a particularly frequent basis and in a distinctly racialised tone.
Not that this should ever warrant a violent response, but the eulogising of the magazine for some sort of mastery of European satirical tradition is a white wash of its chequered history as well as a capitulation to a simplistic narrative of “you’re either with the racist satirists or you’re with the terrorists”.
In weasel words she continued,
We must ensure slogans of solidarity become more than just narrow and questionable support for the targeted publication and instead provide resistance to all those voices which seek to divide France, to entrench camps and harden the already worrying divides.
Poor old Francois-Cerrah…..
Just couldn’t resist another dig at the corpses of our martyrs.
More on Charb’s much more interesting book:
A book written by the late editor of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, Stephane Charbonnier – known as Charb – is set to be published posthumously.
The book, which upholds the right to ridicule religion, was finished two days before Charb was killed by Islamic militants in January, publishers say.
It argues that the fight against racism is being replaced by a misguided struggle against “Islamophobia”.
Charb and 11 others were killed during a Charlie Hebdo editorial meeting.
The attack on the Paris offices of the newspaper was carried out by two brothers, Said and Cherif Kouachi, who were later shot dead by police.
Charb had received numerous death threats following Charlie Hebdo’s publication of cartoons featuring the Prophet Muhammad in 2006. The magazine’s offices were firebombed in 2012.
Charb’s book – which goes on sale on Thursday – is entitled An Open Letter to the Fraudsters of Islamophobia who Play into Racists’ Hands.
It is both a defence of Charlie Hebdo’s editorial stance and an attack on the paper’s detractors.
“The suggestion that you can laugh at everything, except certain aspects of Islam, because Muslims are much more prickly that the rest of the population – what is that, if not discrimination?”
He condemns this position as “white, left-wing bourgeois intellectual paternalism”.
There is also this, just out, on the book which was being written before the massacre at Charlie Hebdo and the Hyper-Casher supermarket: