Nick Ottens (Atlantic Sentinel) | Supporters of Jean-Luc Mélenchon who are thinking of sitting out the second round of the French presidential election ought to take a lesson from Bernie Sanders’ supporters in the United States. When they abstained from the 2016 presidential election, or voted for Green party candidate Jill Stein, they made it possible for Donald Trump to win. Just 1.5 out of 136 million Americans voted for…
Nick Ottens (Atlantic Sentinel) | French Republicans have thrown away their two best chances of denying Emmanuel Macron a second term. Party members eliminated Michel Barnier and Xavier Bertrand from the center-right’s presidential primary on Thursday, giving the men 24 and 22 percent support, respectively. The more right-wing Éric Ciotti and Valérie Pécresse qualified for the runoff on Saturday. Neither polls well against the president. Besting Macron Bertrand, the conservative…
The New York Times claims Macron has ordered a “broad government crackdown against Muslim individuals and groups.” The World Socialist Web Site, in a widely retweeted story, accuses Macron of “whipping up … anti-Muslim hysteria.” An American sociologist who researches white supremacists laments that French officials “respond to violent extremism with violent extremism.” What is this “broad crackdown”? Macron’s government has closed a mosque, which was run by a radical imam. A number of arrests have been made. “Anti-Muslim hysteria”? 51 more Islamic organizations are being investigated for alleged extremist sympathies. What about “violent extremism”? There are plans to take away the French passports of 231 foreign-born criminals.
Shaun Riordan | We do not usually think of France´s dapper, sophisticated young president, the last hope of European liberal elites, pursuing the same objectives as America´s ageing and overweight bully, the sworn enemy of liberal internationalism. But both Macron and Trump agree on the need to end the conflict in Ukraine and re-integrate Russia into the international community.
Scope Ratings | France has been host of the G7. While its neighbour debates foreign policy, Emmanuel Macron continues to pursue his fiscal reforms, without losing sight of the size of France´s budget deficit (rising towards 3.1% of GDP this year and exceeding the target for 2020) which has caused concerns about the sustainability of the country´s debt.
Christmas came early this year in France as President Emmanuel Macron handed out gifts to his constituents like an end of the year bonus and a €100 increase of the minimum wage, explicitly not paid by employers. However, the European Union may not join in the celebrative Christmas conga as this spending spree will send the French budget deficit far north of what European budget rules allow.
Chandra Roy | The next fortnight back at Westminster is likely to be the toughest of Mrs May’s tenure, but equally a testing period for the EU on the prospect of a rejection by UK MP’s, which could ultimately send the process back to “square one” and “open the door to more division and more uncertainty”, as Mrs May’s put it.
By Israel Rafalovich (Brussels) | Relaunching his diplomatic agenda after his leadership ambitions suffered a blow when his Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot resigned, French President Emmanuel Macron called for the EU to stop relying on the United States for its military defence. He pushed for a fresh EU integration and announced that in the coming months he will put new proposals to boost EU defence cooperation.
Israel Rafalovich | French President Emanuel Macron met with two southern allies, Spain and Portugal in his attempt to overhaul the European Union while Spain and Portugal are trying to get French help to connect the countries energy grids to Europe.
Ana Fuentes | “The European leaders will also have to deal with insuring and enlarging a multilateral open system for trade, threatened not only by the US policies, which will lead to Germany having to accept more responsibility within the EU and in the world – and this includes not only the fields of economy and finance,” says Joachim Bitterlich, who was advisor to former Chancellor Helmut Kohl and is currently Professor at the ESCP School in Paris.