by Cosimo A
A few people asked me if there’s any reason to hope for France to get better. This is my 2 cents worth.
I might shock you by commenting that as things stand, France is in a much better situation that the US.
Let’s start with a nice fun slice of reality, a pleasant truth.
Here’s a 1 minute Youtube of Dieudonné, the humorist, at the Zenith hall in Strasbourg on Feb. 13 where 17,000 people paid about $45 a seat. His tours are a major success and halls usually sell out all the seats. The French government and the Zionist pressure groups such as CRIF have tried to get rid of him for almost 13 years, banishing him from TV, banning shows under the dictatorial power of the Conseil d’État even after courts said it was okay, pursuing him in courts on bogus charges, etc. At his lowest, having been banned from TV in 2003 as an “antisemite”, and with even his private shows cancelled, he was reduced to giving performances to 40 or 50 people at a time on a rented bus. Back then, Gilad Atzmon, an exIsraeli, helped defend Dieudonné against the bogus charge of “antisemite”, and in the years since, he worked his way back up to become by far the most popular comedian in France. His success proves what Regis Debray once said, « Interdire, c’est répandre. » To forbid is to spread.
“Dieudonné In Peace” is the name of his latest performance and tour. In that Youtube, he notes that the day before, the Minister of Culture got booed. He also says there will be a change of government, referring to the April/May 2017 elections. Dieudonné can rightfully claim that people watch his Youtube videos more than they watch French corporate media TV “news.”
Alain Soral, a dissident leader but not a humorist, put up a Youtube saying the November 13 attack n Paris was likely a false flag. 900,000 people have seen it in 3 months. His publishing house, Kontre Kulture, (link: http://www.kontrekulture.com). All 176 of the Kontre Kulture books are in French, although 28 are available in other languages from other publishers. So these dissidents are well-known and thriving, but only in France.
Let’s look at the larger picture in France.
The state persecution of Dieudonné, Soral, and a dozen others shows that there is no freedom of speech in France. Not theoretically, but in fact. And that was before the government passed the French version of America’s “Patriot” Act. The velvet glove is gone and the French public now see the iron fist. They are drawing conclusions about the nature of the society they live in, about their rulers, and about what they need to do in response. I have to note that that the loss of freedoms in France is not so different as elsewhere in the states of the empire. Latvia, a NATO ally, is changing their constitution so that merely talking to a foreign news reporter will cost 3 years in prison on the first offense. Erdogan’s Turkey, another NATO “ally”, just pulled the plug on Zaman News and its 650,000 readers, the largest English-language news outlet in Turkey. Zama showed how the Turkish secret service, the MIT, was supplying weapons to ISIS, so Zaman is being shut down for “espionage.”
One thing above all else is required to make sense of all this. It’s absolutely essential to consider the sense of scale. Without that, nothing makes sense, but with it, all the disconnected “dots” form a coherent picture.
What’s at stake is not small policy adjustments the citizens want from their government, but something much larger. In France, it’s a contest for ownership of the nation, and both sides know it. There are still clueless people in the middle of course, but the pool of ignorance is shrinking. If the dissidents win, the elite will have to negotiate with the people for the first time since 1789, and citizens will have recovered some of their sovereignty. They want to get get back to having the prosperous republic of the “Glorious Thirty”, the 1945-1975 era before the French National Bank was given over to Rothschild control and private interest siphoned off the public wealth. (Not an exaggeration: Pompidou was a director of Banc Rothschild before he became French President in 1969 and changed the National Bank.)
If the dissidents lose, it’s prison for anyone who dares to speak out; the legal precedence is being set. So this is epic. It’s pointless to say things like “we are only partway through Act 1,” because there’s no telling how many acts this play will have.
In the long term, I’m pretty sure the French people will win, and the dissidents will have played a crucial role. My optimism is based on fundamentals. On one side of the contest are the truth, the facts, human values and a better future. ON the other side are whopping big lies, censorship, subjugation and subservience , and a dismal future. It’s the masses of the people versus a small elite. This epic battle is also going on in other nations, but among the discontent European vassals of the empire, France is further along in its rebellion.
The American superstar economist, Michael Hudson, gave an extremely cogent description of the stakes in this interview, (your choice of transcript or audio): http://michael-hudson.com/2016/02/the-commanding-heights/ Yes, Hudson is a superstar; he filled a stadium in Italy and the 77 year-old with suspenders isn’t a rock star.
This is a serious fight; since 2012, it has become more out in the open, and that’s why I’m optimistic. This debate is 102 years overdue, since that’s when the French “Socialist” Party stopped being socialist, and except for the Moscow-dominated French Commies, there was no opposition to the French elites. Since they came to power in 2012, the “Socialist” politicians have become incredibly arrogant and don’t even bother with “code words” or fig leaves anymore. Lots of people, myself included, would like to know if due to it’s arrogance, overconfidence … or desperation. Prime Minister Valls said with tremendous anger that Dieudonné “must be put to death” and a minute later he added “put … to a social death.” That’s extremely polarizing language to use against a peaceful and congenial comedian. Madame Taubira, who recently resigned as Justice Minister, is African-French, from the French Caribbean. On TV, she said the slave trade was no big deal, just “forced labor” and implied the slaves were better off as slaves than, you know, running around free in Africa. It’s clear that this government will be swept away in May, 2017. But when you realize that Taubira just got promoted to a seat on the High Court, you can see this will be a long and hard-fought war.
Like any epic battle, it’s about the material conditions of life as much as freedom of speech. The French used to say their heart’s on the left and their wallet is on the right. But now, their wallets are being hit and that’s a game-changer. Stealing from the lower classes was standard for a long time, but at least two things have changed. One is that the economic system is itself morbidly dysfunctional, and now with the internet the dysfunctionality is widely known and explained. The culprits are known and have names.
Another part of the picture in France specifically, are the sanctions. US-imposed sanctions against Russian are wrecking havoc on Main Street France. In response, Russia has been forced to impose its own counter-sanctions. French farmers were selling 4 billion euros a year of produce to Russia, and that’s completely stopped. The resultant oversupply means that French produce prices are in free-fall and the real damage to the farmers is about 10 billion Euros. Farmers are going broke and becoming desperate. On a weekly basis, farmers are blocking highways in protest. The agriculture minister offered some 0.4 billion Euros in relief, so it’s a 1/10 th of a band-aid at best, and otherwise he just ignores the farmers.
Shipyards and the aerospace industry have lost customers because of these sanctions, but in reality they have lost their future markets. When Paris cancelled the sale of two custom-made warships for Russia, high-tech customers worldwide were warned off from buying French hightech products because France became an unreliable vendor. No buyer ever wants to worry about being able to get spare parts and service in the years to come. India had agreed to buy 124 of France’s latest model jet fighter for 15 billion Euros, but India cancelled the purchase. Soon after, India announced a large purchase of Russian planes in a co-production deal. India later agreed to buy a token 12 French warplanes, but the damage was done and everyone knows it. When the dissidents explain that Washington and Israel plan to turn Europe into second-tier economies, the French understand it’s no exaggeration, and that they are the victims. The larger picture is that the empire sees a unified Eurasia market and 1.5 billion people as a colossus that threatens the empire – so it must be broken up. That means Europe’s best and most competitive industries must be made uncompetitive, and that economic ties between Europe and Russia must be permanently broken up. That was the point of Washington’s imposition of sanctions on their vassals in Europe. Among the French managerial class, the true purpose of the sanctions is well understood. But it can career-ending to admit to knowing the truth. It’s a common phenomenon seen in other cultures, at other times in history. It’s just a matter of time before the obvious also becomes mentionable “in respectable circles.” When this truth finally becomes mentionable, it will go viral. And, it will have consequences that people have not yet considered … As a culture, the French are bigger on revenge than, say, the Italians. Come 2017, the French will taste some of that revenge. You will not see any of this in the 100% controlled media, but most people in France have some awareness of it by now. Also dimly recognizable in the fog of the information war, is that Russia and China want a strong and independent European industry as part of a huge “Lisbon to Shanghai” common market. The Russian side is getting its message out fairly well, I think, with many French language media sites. French and Russian cooperation has a long history. That friendship survived Napoleon’s invasion, after all.
Back to the big picture. A big U-turn seems to be in the works, but it’s important to recognize this is a short-term U-turn. What U-turn, you ask ?
Many of the most influential individuals behind the Empire, like Soros and Kissinger, are calling for dumping the sanctions against Russia, saying openly that the economic havoc is going to cause the fall of the French and German governments in the next elections. Fixing the damage from the sanctions can’t wait until the last minute. You can hear tires screeching on the pavement with the recent abrupt U-turn by Jean-Claude Juncker. The President of the European Commission (the power behind the European Council; both EC’s being the real but unelected EU power) that Ukraine won’t become an EU member for 20-25 years. Another analogy: it’s a bucket of ice-cold water on the Kiev Nazis. Europe will probably start to remove its sanctions as early as June, but that’s probably already too late to swing the elections. And … Russia is in no hurry to get rid of its counter-sanctions because the European sanctions were actually an opportunity for Russia to rebuild its industry with autarky – just like Iran did. Russia has said it won’t ask for the sanctions to be lifted, but after they are, then Russia will, on its own schedule of course, remove its counter-sanctions. It’s a standard principle that when the other side makes a serious error, you aren’t in a rush to help get them out of the mess they created.
Why the U-turn on the sanctions and Ukraine’s drive to join the EU ? It’s damage control in the face of at least two large failures.
First and most immediately, is to recognize the failure of the Ukraine gamble. American neocons gambled they could overthrow Ukraine’s elected government and then turn that nation of 43 million people into an instrument to threaten Russia, but the gamble has proven to be a colossal failure. Neocons in the US State Department expected the Nazis (real Nazis, Banderistas with an unbroken heritage from the massacres of the 1940’s) and the kleptocratic oligarchs to be puppets o a US leash while the US looted the place. After two years, Ukraine is bankrupt and on the verge of a humanitarian disaster. The military aggression against eastern Ukraine was defeated in the “cauldrons” of Ilovaisk (9/2014) and Debaltsevo (2/2015). In short, the failure of the Ukraine gamble is reason enough for the U turn.
But wait … there’s more ! The European Union itself is in a slow-motion economic collapse, and has been since 2008. Explaining that economic collapse would take far more space and time than we have here. Let me just note the essential point that this collapse has no quick solutions, and any real solution would require great changes in the world.
So the empire needs a U-turn. It needs to buy time to re-think its strategies, time to get its puppets reelected in the US (9-2016), France (5-2017), and Germany (fall 2017), and it needs time to continue its headlong flight (fuite en avance says it more precisely, and the highbrow English newspapers often use this French phrase.) There is no “fix” in sight for this crisis, anywhere on earth, but the empire is still able to buy time.
So we have to look beyond the U-turn and what’s coming up post 2017.
In France, the dissidents seem to be following the basic rules for building a resistance movement. While they have their “super stars”, they are also encouraging new leaders who can replace them, if the need arises. They are calling for people to have courage, and the people are responding. As I said, the government’s attempt to get rid of the dissident leaders has shown all the French people the iron fist under the velvet glove, and that is radicalizing the public. The regional branches of the dissidents have intelligent leaders and in the videos of the forums, you typically see a room of around 200 serious people who are in their 20’s and 30’s.
An American who is familiar with France and the dissidents cautioned me that my optimism isn’t warranted. In the short run of a few years, his caution is certainly accurate. But the longer run may be a different picture. When the US government went into WW2, it quickly realized it could not win a short war, so it prepared for a long war. Something similar is starting up in France. After years on the receiving end of state power and elite domination, they understand what they are up against. That’s why they are far ahead of Americans who don’t have a thriving dissident movement and who still hope against hope that some sort of “win” in the next election will make a big difference. The French know better than that.
Here’s what we know right now. The dissidents number perhaps 300,000 in a nation of 60 million, and the dissidents do not have an outlet in any political party. All the parties which pretend to be “on the left” are warmongers, on record as favoring all the wars of empire, including Libya, Syria, and former colonies you may not have heard of. The dissidents had a dalliance with the FN for many years. JeanMarie Le Pen, the founder of the FN back in the 1950’s, is the godfather of Dieudonné’s children. The 87 year-old man makes regular appearances on E&R, the main dissident site (http://www.egaliteetreconciliation.fr/). The dissidents pulled the plug on the FN, because Marine Le Pen, the new leader came to a strategic conclusion that the FN could only win the elections if the FN made accommodations with Israel. So she did the obligatory trip to Tel Aviv with all the kow-towing. That was more than the dissidents could accept, so they have taken a well-calculated distance from the new FN.
Overall, the dissidents are still at the stage of de-legitimizing the French establishment, and in that arena, they are successful. It’s the standard Gramsci prescription for the left. The problem, as always throughout history, is how to extend this success into a wider arena.
The dissidents are thorough in their work of de-legitimizing the elites. Ten billionaires own the mass media. Since before WW1, France has had a super-wealthy elite, and they are few in number. Collectively, the 60,000 Jewish supremacists in CRIF (Conseil Représentatif des Institutions juives de France) count as part of the ruling elite. Some of the Jews in CRIF count as individual oligarchs, too. The dissidents are careful to not target the 540,000 “everyday Jews” (Juifs quotidiens). When members of the JDL (Jewish Defense League, banned in the US and in Israel, but not in France) killed a French Arab for mere sport, and the ghettoes were on fire with angry mobs, the dissidents made the point of interviewing a French rabbi in his office, who went on record as saying this killing was not condoned nor supported by the Jewish community.
Something that surprised me, is that the dissidents also point the finger at the very top layer, the 33rd Degree, of the Freemasons. In the US, it seemed like only kooks mention the Freemasons. French dissidents have shown their evidence. Freemasonry has always been strongly anti-clerical. In 1738, a Papal encyclical banned Freemasonry but in France the Parliament refused to pass the law – because a majority of delegates were already Masons. Masonry and the “nobility of the robe” (judicial and other government offices became hereditary and a source of corrupt wealth) were shadowy forces behind the French Revolution. A hundred years later, Jules Ferry personified Masonic power; he was fiercely anticlerical. Ferry organized the colonial exploitation of North Africa so his claim to humanism is yet another lie. Parochial schools had been the norm, but as head of the Senate, Ferry passed a law to replace them with pubic schools, smashing the power of the local Catholic parishes. That was in the late 1800’s. More recently, the head of security for Sarkozy and his “minister without portfolio” (meaning he was superior to the other ministers because his portfolio included theirs as well), was also the head of one of the two big Masonic lodges in France. Wearing those two hats of government minister and head of a secret society is remarkable, and it’s remarkable that only the corporate French media never took notice of it.
In France in particular, there is also a religious angle. The Catholic church and Christianity in general, is under attack in many ways. Marriage is one of the seven Christian sacraments, and gay marriage is an attack on it. In 1992, there was a big conference that included the political parties, the French bishops, and even Alain Soral. Absolutely everybody was there and with only one exception, everyone wanted civil unions for gays to be legalized immediately. The lone holdout was the “Socialist” party. The “Socialists” need a carrot, even a fake orange plastic carrot, to put in front of the donkey. This Party hasn’t been socialist, hasn’t offered any socialist takeover of industries, etc.,since the murder of Jean Jaurès on the eve of WW1. The Party does not offer anything on the economic front for its followers so it desperately needs “social issues” that don’t touch the power of the banksters. In fact the capitalists fully support these “social issues,” with the billionaire media oligarch, Pierre Bergé, as a poster child.
So what about the upcoming French elections ?
1. The “Socialist” government doesn’t have a chance to win the elections in April and May of 2017, based on all the polls. The more likely winner will be the Front National, the FN, and that would be something of a game-changer. Or it could be business as usual, with the UMP, rebranded in 2015 as Les Républicains, forming the new government.
While looking for the latest poll numbers, I saw this on a mainstream and thus anti-FN media site, from Dec. 2015. It quotes an Ipsos poll, also a mainstream outfit. The older the voters, the less they like the FN. 35% of 18-24 year-olds would vote for the FN, followed by 29% for the right and center parties, and only 21% for the “Socialists”.
The FN, the first party of France … among the youth (Le FN, premier parti de France… chez les jeunes)
Come election time, the real issue will be to get the supporters of either establishment parties out to vote. Abstention in the spring, 2014 nation-wide municipal elections and for the French delegation to the European Parliament showed record low levels of turnout. Voters showed their great displeasure with the PS, but were also unhappy with the other parties.
There is one similarity between France and the US. Things are shaping up as establishment versus the people. Here, the Republicrat apparatchiks are closing ranks to defeat Sanders or Trump. In France the UMPS Alternation already closed ranks to defeat the FN.
At the December 6, 2015 Regional elections, the FN was widely expected to win in at least two regions, but in fact the FN didn’t take a single one because on the second round of elections, the “right” and the “left” closed ranks to prevent it. That’s one lesson for the French, but it also gave us two other lessons. One is that the FN can’t yet win, even in their regional strongholds, so triumphalism would be greatly out of place. The other, though, is that the FN has once again increased its percentage of the overall vote, and this was fairly dramatic since European allegiances change slowly.
Conceivably, the right wing party could become more independent. Sarkozy, the CIA-raised agent, the former President of France, currently leads Les Républicains. However, he faces a primary election in November, 2016, and I believe he could lose the party leadership. Sarko L’Americain, as he’s called, isn’t too popular, in part because he’s seen as an American pawn, partly because his economic policies hurt France, and the economy iis why voters kicked him out in 2012. As President, his notoriously thin skin and short height made him the butt of jokes and he responded poorly, even threatening to arrest the jokers. So there should be – but maybe won’t be – a battle inside the UMP to get a better candidate.
For the last 20-30 years, there has been what they call an “Alternation” between the PS ( “Socialist” Party) and the UMP, so the dissidents call it the UMPS, like the American duopoly, the Republicrats. I started to hope that either the UDI or the MoDem’s (centrist-right parties) might emerge because some of their leading people dissed the sanctions against Russia and were advocating that France have an independent foreign policy, not make in Washington. Unfortunately, they haven’t pulled ahead of the pack. THe UDI is the only one with enough popularity and that’s not much. The UDI has 29 out of 577 Deputies in the Parliament but a better showing in the Senate with 43 out of 348 Senators. The Greens, the EELV, have exactly 10 Deputies, and the EELV is very lame; it’s a long and sad story. No other party even has 10 Deputies, although the English leftie media is clogged with stories about nearly non-existent parties, such as Melenchon’s “Left Party” (Parti de Gauche, PG) with zero Deputies.
That’s about all I have to say.