FRANCE | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

FRANCE

Jan 09 09:09

Trump Challenges Macron: EU Army 'Didn't Work Too Well' in WWII

Emmanuel Macron earlier voiced the idea of building a European military so that fellow EU nations could defend themselves from wide-ranging threats. The French leader subsequently came under fire from the White House, which called on him to pay his fair share of NATO membership.

Donald Trump took to Twitter on Saturday to deliver a rebuke to Emmanuel Macron, chastising the French president's ideas of a pan-European army and divisive environmental policies.

Trump scolded Macron for his proposal to create a single European army so that Europe would have a greater military autonomy. The 45th POTUS has repeatedly claimed that many NATO members have not been dishing out enough cash for the alliance's needs.

"The idea of a European Military didn't work out too well in WWI or WWII. But the US was there for you, and always will be. All we ask is that you pay your fair share of NATO," he added.

Jan 09 09:09

Netizens Think Trump-Macron Rapport Over After POTUS' Angry Tweet on EU Army

Last spring Donald Trump confessed that his relationship with Emmanuel Macron, who became the first foreign leader to make a state visit to the United States under 45, was indeed special. Today, the presidential bromance is back in the spotlight amid Trump’s visit to Paris and his somewhat angry tweet directed at the French president.

Jan 08 14:53

France to crack down on 'yellow vest' protests

The French government has announced plans to tighten laws on undeclared protests, in response to violent unrest from the Yellow Vest, or 'Gilet Jaunes', movement.

Jan 07 08:55

‘President against his people’: Salvini openly backs Yellow Vest protesters, lashing out at Macron

In an extraordinary public EU feud, Italy’s Matteo Salvini and his coalition partner have thrown their support behind France’s Yellow Vest movement, while Salvini also accused President Emmanuel Macron of being against his people.

“I support honest citizens who protest against a governing president [who is] against his people,” said the Italian deputy prime minister.

However, the leader of the Northern League added that he “firmly” condemns the recent violence that has marred the protests.

Jan 07 07:32

DENOUNCING FOCUS ON VIOLENCE, WOMEN MARCH IN FRANCE TO RECLAIM ANTI-AUSTERITY MESSAGE OF 'YELLOW VEST' MOVEMENT

"Macron your goose is cooked, the chicks are in the street!"

That was the chant by one large contingent of women marching in the French city of Toulouse on Sunday as female-led demonstrations took place across France in order to keep the pressure on President Emmanuel Macron while also pushing back the increasing displays of violence some within the broader "Yellow Vest" (or Gilets Jaunes) movement argue is overshadowing the underlying political message.

"All the media ever reports is the violence, and we are forgetting the root of the problem" which is the fight against austerity, one protester named Karen, a 42-year-old nurse, told Agence France Presse on the streets of Marseilles.

Sunday's demonstrations followed a day of protests on Saturday during which violence broke out in Paris and other cities as those participating in "Act VIII" protests under the Yellow Vest banner clashed with French riot police, erected barricades, and started fires:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

From Google, we have the following regarding French elections and politics:

"Formally, France's constitution is parliamentary, like that of other European countries, because the government may be voted out of office by the parliament. ... But the president in these countries does not play a role of political leadership as the French president does. France's constitutional order is, in sum, unique."

I would sincerely like the French Parliament to be thinking about this seriously, if things continue as they are at the moment; the situation with French voters looks like it is going from bad to worse.

Jan 06 13:46

A group of masked protesters use a forklift to break into the French Government Ministry

Masked 'yellow vests' break into French Government Ministry
A group of masked protesters use a forklift to break into the French Government Ministry

Jan 06 10:03

France Ablaze Again; Yellow Vests Rage After Founder Arrested; Cops Punched, Tear Gas Deployed

After the protests began peacefully, Paris police deployed teargas and batons as protesters began to riot during the so-called 'Act VIII" Day of Rage, while marches were underway in several other cities across France and London. Protesters in Paris hurled objects at riot police manning bridge barricades over the Seine river, while garbage bins were torched along the upscale Boulevard Saint Germain.

Jan 06 09:51

Macron Arrests "Yellow Vest" Organizer In Escalation Which Will Surely Calm Things Down

French authorities have arrested a key organizer of the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) movement for leading an unauthorized demonstration, signaling a crackdown on the anti-government demonstrators after nearly two months of violence-filled protests.

Eric Drouet, a truck driver from the suburbs of Paris, was arrested in Paris on Wednesday evening near the iconic Champs-Élysées avenue - a prime location for the yellow vests to gather. Drouet was detained while leading a commemoration of yellow vests who have died since the movement's inception, most of whom were hit by cars during protests at roundabouts throughout the country, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Jan 06 09:24

One of President Macron's top officials is 'evacuated' after masked thugs use a FORKLIFT to break into a French government ministry during Yellow Vest riots as chaos spills into EIGHTH weekend

Masked thugs broke into a French government ministry tonight - leading to the 'emergency evacuation' of government spokesman Benjamin Griveaux during a day of Yellow Vests rioting.

The 41-year-old, who is one of President Emmanuel Macron's most senior lieutenants, was rushed to safety by police during the drama.

Dramatic footage shows how a forklift taken from a nearby construction site was used to smash through the entrance of the building.

'Around fifteen masked people dressed in black broke into Mr Griveaux's office at about 4.30 on Saturday,' said an investigating source.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This feels like a staged event to discredit the Yellow Vest movement.

Jan 05 09:32

Yellow Vest agitators want insurrection to ‘overthrow the government’ – Macron spokesman

The Yellow Vest movement has become full of agitators who only want to “overthrow the government,” a spokesman for President Emmanuel Macron’s government said of the protests that gripped France since November.

Benjamin Griveaux made the comments following the government’s first Council of Ministers meeting of 2019 on Friday, as cabinet members returned from their two week Christmas break.

Jan 05 09:31

Stop treating people like beggars or face hatred – Yellow Vests to Macron

A group associated with Yellow Vests has written a fiery open letter to Emmanuel Macron, warning the French president against treating people like beggars, rejecting his nationwide debate, and demanding a major tax reduction.

The missive was posted in the Angry France group on Facebook, which unites almost 300,000 supporters of the Yellow Vest movement, and was also sent to the local media late on Thursday.

“Anger will turn into hatred if you continue, from your pedestal, you and your associates, to look at little people like beggars,” the protesters warned Macron.

Jan 05 09:28

'Yellow Vests' Movement Holds Protests in Paris for Eight Weeks in Row (VIDEO)

The wave of so-called yellow vest protests — named after the obligatory attribute of French drivers — started in France in mid-November.

"Yellow Vest" protesters are demonstrating for the eighth week in a row in Paris on 5 January.

AFP has reported that the French police in Paris have started using tear gas against the "yellow vests", who began to throw bottles and stones at the guards.

Jan 04 08:56

Why France's Yellow Vest Protests Have Been Ignored By "The Resistance" In The US

In less than two months, the yellow vests (“gilets jaunes”) movement in France has reshaped the political landscape in Europe. For a seventh straight week, demonstrations continued across the country even after concessions from a cowed President Emmanuel Macron while inspiring a wave of similar gatherings in neighboring states like Belgium and the Netherlands. Just as el-Sisi’s dictatorship banned the sale of high-visibility vests to prevent copycat rallies in Egypt, corporate media has predictably worked overtime trying to demonize the spontaneous and mostly leaderless working class movement in the hopes it will not spread elsewhere.

Jan 03 10:29

Arrest of Yellow Vest leader Drouet slammed as ‘abuse of power’ & ‘dictatorship’

Shouts of “dictatorship” were heard as one of the leaders of France’s anti-government Yellow Vest movement was arrested in Paris late on Wednesday, after authorities charged him with organizing and leading an unauthorized protest.

Eric Drouet was detained by police as some of the movement’s supporters gathered in the capital’s Place de la Concorde, near the iconic Arc de Triomphe monument. People left candles in remembrance of the movement’s wounded in clashes with police.

Jan 02 11:40

The Yellow Vest Movement Has Spread Like Wildfire Across the World

The power of the people has been mightily illustrated by individuals coming together to say “enough is enough.”

Jan 01 11:36

Contrary to MSM reports, the #GiletsJaunes were back in full force for #ActeVII. Protesting the lying press & Macron’s banking past.

Jan 01 11:12

Marine Le Pen Blasts 'Pyromaniac' Macron Over Defiant New Year's Address

In a televised speech on Monday, the French president vowed that his reform agenda would move forward in spite of ongoing Yellow Vests protests against his government.

French National Rally Party leader Marine Le Pen has lashed out at Emmanuel Macron over his unconciliatory attitude toward those protesting his socio-economic agenda, calling him an "imposter" and a "pyromaniac" via her official Twitter account.

Her party, meanwhile, offered a more detailed criticism of the president's speech.

"At a moment when the nation is in need of conciliation, of a sublime and fraternal vision, of a president who is once again presidential, that is to say, an arbitrator, the French listened during this new year's address to the speech of a clan chief, an ideologue of globalisation and an impudent professor of morality," the statement, published on the party's official Facebook page, said.

Jan 01 11:12

Macron Vows to Push Economic Reforms, Blasts 'Hateful' Protest Leaders

In his New Year's address, the French president called on his countrymen to appreciate what they have and be patient until the effects of his reforms kick in.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Monday that his economic reforms, which sparked mass protests by a popular movement known as the "Yellow Vests", will go ahead regardless of the dissent.

"We have lived through great rifts [this year] and a rising anger," the president said in his New Year's address, according to The Independent. "This anger tells us one thing: that we as nation are not resigned."

"In recent years, we've engaged in a blatant denial of reality," he added, justifying the reforms. "We can't work less, earn more, cut taxes and increase spending."

Jan 01 11:11

'Nostradamus' Macron mercilessly mocked on Twitter for last year's New Year 'cohesion' vows

Looking back at 2018 and the French president's vows to unite the nation, disappointed twitteratti noted the situation in the country, divided by the Benalla affair and the Yellow Vests riots, is not so rainbow-bright after all.

"In my view, 2018 will be the year of national cohesion," the centrist Macron ambitiously wrote in his New Year's Eve message a year ago. That prediction hasn't aged well, and Twitter noticed.

Dec 31 09:44

The Battle to Keep Peasants from Walking on Beach in Front of John Kerry’s Family Home in France

Hikers demanding right of way along a pristine stretch of coastal France are locked in a legal war with villa owners in a posh Brittany resort town, not least the family of US statesman and former presidential candidate John Kerry.

Unless the latest round of lawsuits seeking to curtail free access to the Emerald Coast path near Saint-Briac-sur-Mer succeeds, officials say it will be open to all starting next year.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I love the stench of hypocrisy in the morning!!!

Dec 31 09:32

Pictures: France Yellow Vests March on ‘Collaborator’ Mainstream Media Headquarters

Anti-government protesters turned out in Paris and other French cities for the seventh Saturday running, as activists called for direct democracy — to take power out of the hands of political elite — and protested against the mainstream media.

As in previous weeks, many protestors carried placards with the abbreviation ‘R.I.C.’ — “Citizens’ Initiative Referendum”, a demand for popular referendums that would be automatically triggered by any referendum calling for a change in government policy getting 700,000 signatures.

If enacted, the introduction of referendums triggered by the public rather than given as a gift by politicians would likely see a massive reorientation of political power in France away from the political elite and even traditional political parties, a clear desire of the Yellow Vest movement which has reacted strongly against Emmanuel Macron’s globalist government.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Dec 31 08:40

WESTERN EUROPE“Flag of shame”: Video of French protesters tearing down EU flag goes viral

During the seventh consecutive weekend of yellow vest protests in Paris, a group of protesters can be seen taking down the EU flag.

The sources of the video, which surfaced yesterday, say it took place during Act VII (the seventh protest weekend).

When the flag is taken down people cheer and a French account that posted the video calls it “the flag of shame”.

Yellow vest protests took place all over France and one of the targets of the protesters was the mainstream media as it “spread fake news” about the size of the movement.

Dec 31 08:37

Merkel, Macron put forward unacceptable demands to Moscow — Russian Foreign Ministry

Moscow believes that demands concerning human rights in Crimea and tensions in the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov, put forward by Germany and France, are unacceptable, the Russian Foreign Ministry said, commenting on a joint statement German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron made on December 28.

According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the second part of the statement is regrettable, "in which Berlin and Paris flatly accuse Russia of violating human rights in Crimea and raising tensions in the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait, and also put forward unacceptable demands." "We would like to point out that attempts to question the legal status of Crimea and Sevastopol as Russian regions are useless, as people there made their choice freely and in accordance with international law. Russia will continue to resolutely protect its sovereignty and deter provocations," the ministry added.

Dec 30 09:26

Like Hitler, like Macron? Twitterstorm after Le Monde publishes controversial magazine cover

Le Monde has issued an apology over its cover after facing a barrage of accusations of ‘comparing’ President Emmanuel Macron to Adolf Hitler. The magazine insisted that it “obviously” had no such parallel in mind.

The controversial image featured on the cover of the M le magazine du Monde, issued on Saturday. It contains a photo collage of Macron and the Yellow Vest protesters on the Champs Elysees.

The image and its art style have definitely caught the eye of readers, with the President of the National Assembly Richard Ferrand suggesting that they might have invoked certain parallels.

Dec 30 09:25

The Shocking Truth About Emmanuel Macron - What You Need To Know!

Dec 30 09:13

Eiffel Tower is shrouded by smoke as Paris burns into the night: Iconic landmark shines through choking black pall after Yellow Vest protesters set cars ablaze for the seventh weekend as they call on Macron to go

The streets of Paris have been set ablaze during 'yellow vests' protests in Paris this evening leaving the Eiffel Tower shrouded in thick black smoke, after riot police fired tear gas at crowds earlier today.

Protesters have set cars alight and left them to burn in the streets of the capital city, as a demonstration against the French government's tax policies resumed for the seventh consecutive week.

Shocking images show the iconic tower masked by a covering of smoke and cars engulfed by burning flames sit abandoned on the roadside as demonstrators continued their stand off with authorities.

Dec 30 09:07

‘Journalists come down’: Yellow Vests chant ‘fake news’ outside French TV station (VIDEOS)

Dozens of Yellow Vest protesters have descended on the headquarters of France’s BFMTV channel accusing the station of broadcasting “fake news” and calling for the resignation of President Emmanuel Macron.

The demonstrators arrived at the offices in Paris around an hour after the gathering was announced on Facebook. There was already a heavy police presence at the building in the city’s 15th arrondissement when the crowd formed.

Dec 29 09:43

If Macron Fails, Europe Fails

French President Emmanuel Macron has tried to calm protesters by raising the minimum wage, among other concessions. But if the yellow vests continue eroding his authority, it's not just France that will suffer. And Germany is partly at fault.

Dec 29 09:31

Some 40 'Yellow Vests' Tried to Storm Macron's Summer Residence - Reports

About 40 participants of the "yellow vest" protest movement have tried to break into French President Emmanuel Macron's summer retreat on the Mediterranean coast, the France Bleu radio station reported.

The protesters tried to storm the medieval fort of Bregancon on Thursday before being stopped by police on their way to the presidential residence, according to the France Bleu radio station.

Forced to turn back, the demonstrators said they would try again on Friday, the outlet reported.

Dec 28 08:41

More trouble for Macron as his wife brings another controversy home

The beleaguered President of France already has enough trouble with Yellow Vest protests throughout all of France calling for his resignation.

Now, his wife, Brigitte, is at the centre of a public controversy, doing her best to alienate yet more of his voter base.

A photo taken of her at the Tuileries Christmas fair with entrepreneur Marcel Campion has sparked outrage. Marcel, known as the “Fairground King” is widely considered a “Homophobe” and even the Deputy Mayor of Paris, Ian Brossat, has weighed in: “Beautiful, the wife of the President of the Republic who displays herself with a notorious homophobe”.

Others chiming in have made even stronger comments, as Thomas Portes of the French Communist Party: “The new world has a rancid smell. Absolute shame. Not worthy of a first lady”.

Dec 28 08:40

“Macron ‘lost authority’ after giving in to demands of yellow vest protesters”

On Thursday Funke Media group in Germany published an interview with EU Budget Commissioner and former Prime Minister of Baden Württemberg Günther Oettinger.

Some interesting takeaways from the interview include his remarks that the very beleaguered and embroiled French President Emmanuel Macron “lost authority with his budget for 2019” when he agreed to increase his spending in response to the demands of the Yellow Jackets.

Oettinger further stated “but he remains a strong supporter of the European Union”. The Commissioner also told the newspapers that the EU will accept a French budget deficit above the EU’s three per cent ceiling in 2018 “as a one-time exception”, stating that Brussels had reviewed the French budget several weeks ago and won’t be revisiting it.

Dec 28 08:12

Gatwick CEO Welcomes French Billions, as Airport Majority Stake Sold Off

French concessions and construction giant, Vinci, has acquired am effective 50.01% stake in Britain's second largest and Europe's eighth busiest airport, despite overall investment and economic uncertainty surrounding UK's exit from the European Union.

On December 27, VINCI Airports, a VINCI Concessions subsidiary, signed an agreement to acquire a majority stake from current shareholders an effective in Gatwick Airport Limited, a freehold property airport.

The other 49.99% will be managed by Global Infrastructure Partners, headquartered in New York.

The freehold ownership structure appealed to Vinci, who see such a perpetual property duration regime "extremely valuable for VINCI Airports as a long term strategic investor and operator."

Dec 28 07:14

Yellow Vest protests in France planned for Saturday, to continue into new year – sources

The Yellow Vest anti-government protests that have rocked France will be held on Saturday and New Year's Eve, and continue into 2019, AFP reported on Friday, citing several sources in the movement. The Yellow Vests “are still mobilized,” said Laetitia Dewalle, a spokeswoman of the protest movement which does not have a traditional leadership structure. Several of the movement’s representatives said a seventh straight Saturday of protests will take place across the country this weekend. Yellow Vest representative Benjamin Cauchy warned that if the concessions made so far by President Emmanuel Macron did not add up, “we will end up with a large-scale mobilization in late January.”

Dec 27 14:29

Turkey reveals locations of French military bases in Syria

For the second time this year, the Turkish state-owned media has revealed the locations of the French military bases in Syria

“In four of nine military locations the French are protected by Americans, and in the rest, they operate under the protection of PKK,” the Anadolu Agency said.

The article highlighted the French bases that were mostly located in Syria’s northeastern region, including the border governorate of Al-Hasakah.

Dec 27 13:43

What's Really Going Down in Paris?

Dec 27 08:18

'Let Them Eat Cake': Users on Macron Sharing Champagne With French Army in Chad

The Elysee palace has said in a statement that Emmanuel Macron will use his first visit to Chad to reaffirm his commitment to counterterror efforts amid 6 weeks of Yellow Vests protests in France.

French President Emmanuel Macron arrived in Chad for a two-day visit to meet with French soldiers deployed in the Sahel region under anti-insurgent Operation Barkhane. During his pre-Christmas visit to Kossei air base near Chad’s capital N’Djamena, Macron brought champagne, foie gras, and chocolate to share a holiday meal with 1,300 troops.

Dec 27 08:17

Yellow Vests Have Nothing to Do With the Rise of Right in Europe – Author

The yellow vests-proposed "citizens' initiative referendum" (RIC) may pave the way for the rise of a French sixth Republic where the people of France will finally be heard by their government, journalist and author Gilbert Mercier told Sputnik, stressing that the ongoing crisis is not a problem specific to France but a far broader issue.

Yellow vests protesters came up with a referenda initiative which appears to be nothing short of a push to revive democracy, according to Gilbert Mercier, a French journalist, serving as the editor-in-chief of the News Junkie Post and the author of "The Orwellian Empire".

"It is at large an extremely positive idea, providing that it is not used by financial interest and/or foreign interest to serve specific agendas," Mercier told Sputnik.

Dec 27 08:17

Grassroots Movement: Do Yellow Vests Have Backers in French Establishment?

The yellow vests movement is unlikely to force French President Emmanuel Macron to resign unless protesters have powerful backers within France's political circles, Italian journalist Daniele Pozzati told Sputnik.

There are no doubts about the grassroots nature of the ongoing "yellow vests" protests, however, one should not underestimate the possibility of a split within the French political establishment, Munich-based Italian journalist and political analyst Daniele Pozzati told Sputnik.

"Last October, [conservative Italian journalist Maurizio] Blondet pointed out that a series of resignations at the highest level of French government had left Macron struggling to fill vacant posts, due to the reluctance of French senior politicians to associate their names with an apparently doomed presidency. This was before yellow vests came along," he recalled.

Dec 27 07:08

Yellow vests: Saturday in Paris, the police had a secret weapon

Another finding, despite calls not to protest in Paris, the mobilization of yellow vests has grown from one week to another. The message sent by the Elysee, according to which some "came to kill," failed to reverse the trend. No weapons were seized during the police checks. "Dramatization has not prevented the world, of the order of 10,000 people," admits an official. This December 8, the yellow vests were visible clusters of Bastille to Etoile through Republic and the Grands Boulevards, when the previous weekend, they were concentrated only on the Star. "All the more reason to congratulate ourselves on our device"slips a trade unionist who hopes, without much believe, "that the tension will now fall". "If this Saturday we had done like the weekend before, we would have had another day of chaos, " he said. But I do not know how many consecutive Saturdays we still hold like this .

Dec 26 07:29

France Reportedly Promised Kurdish SDF Support Amid US Withdrawal from Syria

The White House has announced the withdrawal of its troops from Syria within the next 100 days with President Trump stating that the US had managed to defeat Daesh* and thus should no longer stay in the Arab Republic.

Advisers to French President Emmanuel Macron met with representatives of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Kurdish militants and assured them of future support from Paris, Iranian PressTV reported, citing anonymous French official.

The advisers passed on a message of support and solidarity and explained to them the talks France had with US authorities to continue the fight against Daesh", the official reportedly said.

Dec 26 07:23

Ankara warns France against supporting US-backed Kurdish militia

Turkey has warned France against protecting a US-backed Kurdish militia in Syria, AFP reports. “If France is staying to contribute to Syria’s future, great, but if they are doing this to protect the [militia], this will bring no benefit to anyone,” Hurriyet daily quoted Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu as saying. Washington’s decision to pull out all 2,000 ground forces from Syria has stunned most allies, including France, but was greeted with approval by Turkey.

Dec 26 07:12

Brigitte Macron Lands in "Homophobia" Scandal After Pic With 'Funfair King'

While her husband is trying to put out the fire of the Yellow Vests protests, the First Lady of France, Brigitte Macron, has found herself at the centre of public controversy after a photo was taken of her with an entrepreneur who went a little bit too far in his war of words with Paris City Hall.

A picture taken at the Tuileries Christmas fair shows Emmanuel Macron's better half standing with a wide smile alongside Marcel Campion, a controversial tycoon widely condemned for homophobic remarks.

Campion said in a statement that Brigitte Macron did not express her personal support for him, but came together with her family to support the Christmas market. He said that those who had accused Macron of supposed homophobia were trying to "instrumentalise" her visit. However, the First Lady still came under fire from outraged commenters.

Dec 24 10:14

Game Changer: French Police to Join Yellow Vests After Finding Out Gov’t is Ripping Them Off Too

As the “gilets jaunes” or “yellow vests” protests continue to take place across France, the government has been slowly acquiescing to the demands of citizens.

Dec 24 08:10

'Allies should be reliable': Macron 'regrets' Trump's decision to pull out of Syria

French President Emmanuel Macron has bemoaned the decision by his US counterpart to withdraw troops from Syria. Such a move is unbecoming of any "ally," since they should be "reliable" and "fight shoulder to shoulder," he said.
"I very deeply regret the decision made on Syria," Macron said on Sunday, speaking at a news conference during his visit to Chad.

Earlier this week, Donald Trump announced his move to withdraw US troops from the country, citing the "defeat" of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS). While the US president had promised to do this previously, the actual decision apparently caught many by surprise.

Dec 24 08:10

SYRIAN WAR REPORT – DEC. 24, 2018: FRANCE PLANS TO REPLACE US FORCES IN SYRIA

Syrian government and pro-Iranian sources have increased their activity in the eastern part of Syria in response to the announced decision of the US administration to withdraw troops from the country.

On December 22, a spokesperson for Iraq’s Kata’ib Hezbollah, Jafar al-Husseini, told al-Mayadeen TV that the group is ready to coordinate with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in order to protect Syrian Kurds.

He noted that the U.S. withdrawal had been expected and revealed that Kata’ib’ Hezbollah has “continuous and intensive communications” with Kurdish commanders in northeastern Syria. According to al-Husseini, the U.S. is planning to hand over its role in the country to Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Dec 23 09:58

Police draw guns on Yellow Vests as violent demonstrations hit France for sixth Saturday in a row and car crash victim becomes tenth person to die in chaos…while protests again spread to Brussels

A tenth person has died during the Yellow Vest protests in France as demonstrations resumed today, with police pulling their guns on activists amid fierce clashes in central Paris.

A 36-year-old motorist, who has not been identified publicly, died when his car collided with a lorry at a road block erected by protesters in Perpignan last night, in the south of the country.

A local police spokesman said: 'The victim was with a group of demonstrators when the accident happened just before midnight on Friday. An enquiry has been launched.'

Protesters also gathered around a tollbooth on a French motorway on Saturday causing huge queues of vehicles and long delays.

Meanwhile Brussels faced renewed demonstrations after a month of mass protests which have seen at least 400 people detained following clashes with police.

Dec 23 09:55

French town opens probe after Yellow Vests BEHEAD Macron effigy & put ‘head’ on stake

Authorities in a south-western French town are furious after Yellow Vest protesters beheaded an effigy of Emmanuel Macron with an ax, put its “head” on a stake and danced. Now the mock executioners face a very real criminal case.

Around 90 protesters dressed in yellow vests – the symbol of the recent wave of anti-government protests in France – gathered in a park in the town of Angouleme to stage the mock beheading on Friday evening. It’s not clear if the day was chosen deliberately, but on December 21 French President Macron celebrated his 41st birthday.

The macabre “performance” quickly spread on social networks and in French media, with photos showing the Yellow Vests literally cutting off Macron effigy’s head with a large ax. If that wasn’t enough, the mock head – with a mask of the president’s face – was then placed on a stake. The protesters then proceeded to dance around a burning barricade after apparently setting the rest of the “beheaded” effigy on fire.

Dec 22 13:07

Another Saturday in Paris: Smoke & scuffles, more than 100 Yellow Vests detained

The atmosphere at the Yellow Vest protests in the heart of the French capital has become more strained as demonstrators engage in scuffles with police officers.

Saturday’s protest started with calm demonstrations but a few hours later tensions rose and police resorted to force against the rioters near the artistic Montmartre district in the north of the capital.

Dec 22 13:06

Eyedrops, helmets & 2.5kg vests: Journalists kit up for new wave of French protests

Covering Yellow Vest protests is a hard job for reporters as they often find themselves amid heavy clashes and clouds of tear gas. Look how RT’s Charlotte Dubenskij is getting ready for the sixth weekend of rallies.
“At RT we believe the best way to tell a story is to get to the heart of it – and that’s essentially what we as a team try to do in the protests,” explained Dubenskij, who has reported on the protests in the French capital.

Dec 22 13:03

Woman threatened with murder after saying Islam should submit to French laws and criticism

Moroccan-French journalist Zineb El Rhazoui says she has received death and rape threats for saying “innoccous” things like: “Islam has to submit to French laws, humour, reason and any form of criticism just like any other ideology, sect or religion”.

According to the former cartoonist of Charlie Hebdo “There is no valid reason for Islam to be an exception”.

Dec 22 13:00

Powerless Macron bows again to protesters and increases wages for protesting policemen

Blue Vest Victory. Macron making further changes to budget after police organised strikes for the day, called Blue Vests, in solidarity with the Yellow Vest movement.

French police to receive a wage rise, increasing their average monthly salary €120 per month in 2019.

Already exhausted police forces have been called out for five straight weeks of Yellow Vest protests. They have complained of the exhausting hours of patrols and continued need for equipment.

Dec 22 12:54

Ultra-Orthodox Jews Up in Arms Against French Over Jerusalem’s Key Historic Site

The so-called Tombs of the Kings, which historian Josephus Flavius attributed to Queen Helena of Adiabene, have changed hands several times over the past 150 years, with the current owner being the French government. However, Israel’s Haredi conservatives regard the place as a holy site, to which they should all be given access.

Ultra-Orthodox Jews’ continuous requests to be let inside the Tombs of the Kings in East Jerusalem, the largest historic burial complex in the city, to pray have raised quite a few concerns among the French, whose consulate is located in close proximity to the place, Haaretz reported.

There has of late been another round of protests by Jews, who have been gathering by a locked iron gate on Nablus Road, clashing with the guards who refuse to let them in, marking another twist in a long-standing struggle over one of Jerusalem’s landmark archaeological sites.

Dec 22 09:00

The New French Revolution?

Dec 21 11:45

Death toll in French 'yellow vest' protests rises to nine

The death toll linked to France’s anti-government “yellow vest” protests has risen to nine, the government said on Thursday, as demonstrators kept up major disruptions of road traffic.

“There has been a ninth death, this morning in Agen, by a roundabout. It was a ‘Yellow Vest’ who was protesting outside but was not following roadway safety instructions,” Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters.

Local officials said the latest victim, a man aged about 60, was hit by a truck near a motorway where demonstrators had been gathering.

Dec 21 09:40

France prepares 'last resort' chemical weapon that can be smothered around Paris to keep Yellow Vest rioters away from key buildings as anti-Macron protests continue

French security forces are ready to smother the centre of Paris with a ‘last resort’ chemical weapon in a bid to keep protesters away from key buildings, it has emerged.

Astonishing revelations about the debilitating powder – which can be spread across an area the size of six football pitches in just ten seconds – highlights the increasing desperation of President Emmanuel Macron’s administration as it faces up to a law and order crisis.

The country has been hit by five straight weeks of violence sparked by the Yellow Vests protest movement that has seen national monuments including the Arc de Triomphe ransacked.

Dec 21 09:23

Hilarious! Euro-Poodles Were Not Told of Trump's Syria Withdrawal in Advance, Learned of It From the Media

UK and France have troops of their own illegally in Syria alongside the US. UK has a platoon of SAS commandos or so in Syria's south at Al-Tanf, and France has a few hundred of soldiers in the east with the Kurds.

Despite that Trump did not tell Macron, May and their defense officials, who earlier this year also helped him cruise-missile Syria, that he's withdrawing in advance. They had to learn about it from the media like the rest of us:

Dec 21 09:16

French spirit in motion: Yellow Vests waltz to Edith Piaf as police close down camp (VIDEO)

They’ve endured tear gas and rubber bullets, but the Yellow Vests still possess ‘joie de vivre’ – joy of life. A rousing video of protesters dancing cheek-to-cheek as police close in captures the spirit of their movement.

Dec 21 08:31

French spirit in motion: Yellow Vests waltz to Edith Piaf as police close down camp

They’ve endured tear gas and rubber bullets, but the Yellow Vests still possess ‘joie de vivre’ – joy of life. A rousing video of protesters dancing cheek-to-cheek as police close in captures the spirit of their movement.

Bloodied protesters on the streets of Paris may be grabbing headlines, but the true zeitgeist of the Yellow Vest movement can be found in the small town of Margencel in southeastern France.

Dec 21 08:22

WHAT’S REALLY HAPPENING IN FRANCE

Violence in Paris, right?

That’s what the useless news media would like you to believe.

The real action is in the countryside – and it’s been peaceful and devastatingly effective.

The government was brought to its knees in just one week.

Dec 20 09:18

Berlin Slams Withdrawal of US Troops From Syria, Paris Stays to Fight Daesh

US President Donald Trump recently announced in a Twitter statement that the Daesh* terrorist group has been defeated in Syria, adding that this was the only reason for the United States to be in the Middle Eastern country during his presidency.

"Daesh is weaker than ever. Daesh has gone into hiding and insurgency in its manner of fighting. Daesh has lost more than 90% of its territory. Daesh has no more logistics as it could have had. But Daesh is not removed from the map, nor its roots, it is necessary to definitively defeat militarily the last pockets of this terrorist organization", French Minister for the Armed Forces Florence Parly said on Twitter.

Trump's decision to withdraw US troops from Syria could hurt fight against the Daesh terror group in the country, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas stated.

Dec 20 08:49

'Blue Vests' looming? French govt promises bonus for police but unions ready for action

Police unions in France say they have struck a wage deal

Dec 20 08:39

France’s Macron Turns to Sarkozy For Aid Amid ‘Yellow Vests’ Protests - Report

It looks like the liberal President Macron has turned to his right-wing predecessor for help with the protests raging across France.

French President Emmanuel Macron, who is widely considered to be a left-wing liberal, seems to have turned to his right-wing predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy — who led France from 2007 to 2012 — for assistance, as the so-called "Yellow Vests" protests ravage the country.

On December 7, the current and the former presidents met at the Elysee Palace for a lunch. According to Le Figaro, the two politicians discussed public order as well as Macron's recently announced tax exemption for overtime work.

Dec 20 08:36

#ICYMI: May & Macron. Crisis at Christmas!

Dec 20 08:26

France’s govt bows to police demands for pay boost

The French government bowed to police demands for a salary boost and decades of unpaid overtime, according to a statement issued early Thursday by the Interior Ministry. It said that two days of meetings with three leading police unions produced an agreement to boost pay. The deal comes after police officers – stretched by containing violent ‘Yellow Vest’ demonstrators and guarding against extremist attacks – staged their own protests, including at the main Paris airport.

Dec 19 10:35

"Yellow Vests" & The Downward Mobility Of The Middle Class

Capital garners the gains, and labor's share continues eroding. That's the story of the 21st century.

The middle class, virtually by definition, is not prepared for downward mobility. A systemic, semi-permanent decline in the standard of living isn't part of the implicit social contract that's been internalized by the middle class virtually everywhere:living standards are only supposed to rise. Any decline is temporary.

Downward mobility is the key context in the gilets jaunes "yellow vest" movement in France. Taxes and prices rise inexorably while wages/pensions stagnate. The only possible outcome of this structural asymmetry is a decline in the standard of living.

Dec 19 08:28

FREXIT! Eurosceptic joy as Macron considers law change -France braces for BLACK WEDNESDAY

PRESIDENT Emmanuel Macron gave way to eurosceptic activists pushing for a ‘Frexit’ from the European Union (EU) on the eve of a mass police revolt, following five weeks of violent protests from the Yellow Vest movement.

Activists who are pushing for France to leave the EU won their first victory on Tuesday – and a step closer to the country voting on ‘Frexit’. The news comes as the country prepares for Black Wednesday and further riots in the nation. The beleaguered French President told ministers that he would consider changing the law to allow what he called “citizens’ initiative referendums”, following calls from Yellow Vest activists who have been putting the idea forward as part of their revolt against Mr Macron’s government.

Dec 19 08:05

French POLICE threaten to protest against Macron's government as Yellow Vest demonstrators are joined by the 'blue vests'

The French government has sought to soothe police forces demanding improved working conditions by proposing a 300-euro (£270) bonus to officers deployed to the violent protests that started last month.

President Emmanuel Macron committed to the idea of protest duty pay earlier this month. The government's offer came a day after two police unions announced work slowdowns to protest staffing and other budget issues.

Interior minister Christophe Castaner is meeting police union representatives later. It is not clear if the proposed premiums would calm the growing anger in police ranks.

Dec 19 07:33

‘Yellow Vests’ Occupy French Highways, Torch Toll Booths

The damages have cost the road operator tens of millions of euros already.

French protesters, commonly referred to as "yellow vests," have occupied highways in France and set fire to toll booths, sparking chaos in the country's transport system just days before the Christmas holidays, according to a report by Reuters.

Vinci Autoroutes, France's largest toll road operator, has reported protesters occupying some 40 sites across its network and damaging some intersections. In particular, damaged intersections were reported in Avignon, Orange, Perpignan and Adage.

Dec 19 07:29

French interior minister to meet police unions over ‘strained resources’ after protests

France’s Interior Minister Christophe Castaner is to meet with representatives of police unions on Tuesday evening, following complaints about strained resources in the wake of five straight weekends of violent protests. Two police unions complained Monday about working conditions and strained resources in light of the past few weeks of protests, which have seen officers sent in to clear road blockades and control demonstrations. The Alliance union has urged the government to invest in law enforcement while calling for a work slowdown on Wednesday to protest planned cuts in the national police budget.

Dec 18 12:42

What Happens If the French Yellow Vests Win?

What if protesters in Paris win, and the French government gives in to all their demands?

What if taxes are reduced, wages increased, President Macron steps down?

I am not talking only about the fuel tax; attempts to impose it have been already abandoned. I am not talking about increase of the minimum wage – the government already agreed to rise it by 100 euro per month.

What I am talking about are real, fundamental changes which many protesters seem to be desiring: substantial tax reduction for the majority of French citizens, generous increase in wages and enhancement of social benefits for all.

So, if the Yellow Vests manage to win all this, then what will happen? Who would benefit? But also, who would lose?

*

One of my readers recently wrote to me that France should reduce its military budget and from those billions of euro saved, could easily finance demands of the protesters.

Dec 18 12:13

Gilets Jaunes: The End of Dystopia

The French are the best. The men don’t get fat. The women don’t sleep alone. The kids are well-behaved. They have the best architecture, the best way of living, best bread, best wine, best olive oil, best cooking, some of the best writing, films, painting, poetry, perfume – and women. They also excel in revolutions. Each revolution of theirs is a peach, perfect, round and juicy. They open a new epoch for mankind.

Just thinking of a French revolution makes me feel young, for I remember the previous one, in May 1968, and it was a beauty, the revolution of Forbidden to Forbid. It ushered us into the short-living paradise of permissible. Believe it or not, we could freely flirt with the opposite sex, we could smoke in the pubs and cafés, we could have a drink and drive. We could rent a room for small price, and roam Europe for $5 a day. Workers weren’t fired, jobs were aplenty, there were no one-year contracts, parking was free and gasoline cheap. Oh yes, and the cotton was high.

Dec 18 09:55

Lawyers in France Rouen throw their law books on the floor .corrupt EU system anymore

Dec 17 11:19

Israel Offers to Take 200,000 French Jews Who Are Afraid Rioters May Be Coming for Them

In the wake of the on-going street violence in France, Israeli PM Netanyahu has called for a new program to be put in place that will offer Jews living in France help in moving to Israel:

The Israeli government discussed Sunday its readiness to accept a new wave of immigrants amid an increase of antisemitism in France, Ynet reported.

Following the outcome of a government meeting, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered the creation of a national program to encourage the repatriation to Israel of Jewish refugees from France. According to local media, this blueprint program will also be introduced to an inter-governmental commission on integration.

Dec 17 08:37

‘Macron… WHAT?’ French TV channel ‘censors’ photo of Yellow Vest protester’s placard (PHOTOS)

TV channel France3 has “fixed” a placard held by a Yellow Vest protester, which urged President Emmanuel Macron to resign. The broadcaster explained that the sign was broadcast reading just Macron, due to a “human error.”
The unfortunate blunder occurred on Saturday during an evening news program that was covering the ongoing Yellow Vest protests.

Among videos and images of the protests, France3 featured a photo supplied by Agence France Presse (AFP). It shows a couple of mounted police officers watching the crowds outside the Opera building in Paris on Saturday. One of the Yellow Vests holds high a placard, reading “Macron out.”

Dec 17 08:16

Macron Breaks: Concessions to Yellow Vests Will Be Rushed Through Parliament

The French government is set to rush tax cuts and a rise in the minimum wage through parliament in a bid to end the “yellow vest” protests which appear to be waning after a month of disruption.

The measures announced a week ago by President Emmanuel Macron will be discussed at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday and put to the National Assembly and the Senate for votes before Christmas, officials said.

But in the meantime, the protesters must dismantle their road blocks, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said Monday, warning that “we can’t continue to paralyse the French economy.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The media has been claiming the yellow vest protests are "in decline" or "waning" since the day they started.

Dec 17 08:14

‘WE DIDN’T LISTEN TO PEOPLE’: FRENCH PM ADMITS MISTAKES IN DEALING WITH YELLOW VEST RALLIES

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has acknowledged that the government made mistakes while handing the massive Yellow Vest protests that have gripped the country for the past five weeks.
“We made mistakes. We did not listen enough to the French people. I remain convinced that they want this country to be transformed,” he told Les Echoes newspaper on Sunday.

Violence at the demonstrations has been hitting record levels with hundreds of protesters injured since November 17. At least seven people died during the protests. Police officers have also suffered injuries.

French cities descended into chaos, with protesters smashing store windows, looting, overturning cars, and burning barricades. City centers were shrouded in fog from tear gas, smoke grenades and firecrackers. Earlier in December, Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire admitted that the protests were a “catastrophe” for the country's economy and businesses.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The French seem to remember their Revolution, and in a positive light, a lot more clearly than most Americans want to.

Dec 17 08:13

BBC Looks For Russian Interference In French Protests! Zakharova Hits Back With OSCE Suit

The correspondence of the journalist of the BBC Russian Service, Olga Ivshina, in which she asked to find any evidence of “Moscow’s interference” in the mass protests of the yellow vests in France, is an example of propaganda in which the Western media are “most closely” involved. This was announced by the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, on Sunday, December 16.

Dec 17 08:00

France Found No Signs of Russia's Alleged Involvement in Protests - Media

French intelligence services have not found any signs of Russia's alleged involvement in the dissemination of false information related to the protests that are currently taking place in the country, local media reported on Sunday, citing an intelligence source.

According to the Journal du Dimanche newspaper, as of the end of this week, neither the French Directorate-General for External Security (DGSE) nor the General Directorate for Internal Security (DGSI) managed to establish any facts proving Russia's direct involvement in the spread of fake news or conspiracy rumours within the framework of the "yellow vest" movement.

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