It’s no secret that Emmanuel Macron harbours a contempt for Russia’s President Putin. Macron began hectoring Putin during their first meeting in France at a joint press conference, where he accused Russian journalists of not being honest before saying that such people are not journalists at all. Putin remained as calm as ever throughout the rather awkward barrage from the newly elected French President.
This is of course the same Macron who as a French Presidential candidate banned the two largest international media outlets from Russia, RT and Sputnik, from his campaign events. All other French candidates allowed RT and Sputnik to cover their campaigns as is standard.
It seems however that in spite of Macron being not only endorsed but enthusiastically promoted by all French mainstream media outlets during the campaign, his opposition to addressing the media is not limited to the Russian press.
It has been a modern tradition in the French Fifth Republic for the President to hold a Q and A session on Bastille Day which commemorates the controversial French Revolution of 14 July 1789.
Macron has decided to break with tradition and his excuse for doing so shows the contempt the French President harbours for ordinary people.
According to one of Macron’s spokesmen, the French President’s “complex thought process lends itself badly to the game of question-and-answer with journalists”.
By contrast, President Putin faces journalists and members of the public for up to five hours during his Q and A sessions and has never yet been lost for an answer. Most of President Putin’s answers are in fact highly detailed.
It seems that President Putin is not only more intelligent but also more accessible than his young French counterpart.