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SYRIZA hypocrisy again exposed as open borders bonanza continues

Over 3,000 residents of the island of Lesvos, which has been inundated with migrants, protested the current state of the island during the recent visit of prime minister Alexis Tsipras. But for SYRIZA, any opposition equates with fascism.

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Just days after a major protest in the island of Lesvos opposing the occupation of the main square of the island’s capital, Mitilini, by over 200 illegal migrants, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras—who once demonstrated that his geography skills are akin to his English-language skills by referring to Lesvos and Mitilini as separate islands—paid a visit to the island for an absurd propaganda speech as part of the 14th North Aegean Regional Conference.

The protests

Protesters attempt to overturn riot police buses while demonstrating against the visit of the prime minister of Greece Alexis Tsipras to Mitilini, the capital of the island of Lesvos, May 3, 2018 (Orestes Panagiotou, APA-MPA).

As Tsipras spoke at the conference, an estimated 3,000 residents of the island of Lesvos protested outside, said to be the largest protest in the island’s history. Protesters attempted to burst past a barricade consisting of 17 riot police buses—the same riot police which Tsipras and company had pledged to abolish prior to their ascent to power in January 2015—to issue a resolution to the prime minister. Some protesters rocked the riot police buses, attempting to topple them.

Among the complaints of the protesters is the elimination of the reduced value-added tax (VAT) rate for Lesvos and other islands—which SYRIZA had once pledged to protect and maintain and which had been put in place to alleviate the cost of shipping necessary goods to far-flung islands—while shops on the island were shuttered in protest of the tax increase. Perhaps even more so, the protests also concerned the daily problems and declining quality of life which the island’s residents face as a result of the migrant influx. Lesvos has, for years been at the front lines of the inflow of migrants, supposedly refugees from Syria, but many of whom—mostly unaccompanied young men—hail from other countries of the Middle East, Asia, and even Africa and… Latin America.

The mayor of Lesvos Spyros Galinos ended up being the one to issue the protesters’ statement to Tsipras. Nevertheless, the demonstrations turned chaotic on at least two occasions, when protesters attempted to break the riot police barricade.

Galinos, speaking to The Guardian, stated: “The people of Lesvos are exhausted. The rhythm of our lives has been shattered by refugees and migrants who now number a third of our population… fear prevails. Women are afraid to leave their homes at night, children are kept locked up indoors because parents are afraid to let them go out and play. No community would put up with this.”

It’s a wonder that Galinos wasn’t immediately branded a hardcore fascist by the open borders-supporting PC police at The Guardian, especially following his statements about women and children on the island and fear prevailing.

SYRIZA’s hypocrisy on display once again

Tsipras, oblivious to everything, filled his speech with talk about “growth” and Greece’s supposed forthcoming “exit” from the “bailout” (loan) agreements.

“When President Juncker speaks of a clean exit from the bailout program in the summer of 2018, when the head of the OECD speaks about the feat of the Greek people and of a country that is leading the way in reforms, what point is there to waste time on pointless disagreements?”

Come again? President Juncker? President of what? It seems Tsipras let the EU surpa-state cat out of the bag unwittingly with this statement.

Tsipras then made lofty claims of eliminating waste in the public health care system, even as his own government has offered patronage plum positions to SYRIZA hacks, such as a tire shop owner being appointed vice president of the public hospital of Santorini. Tsipras then went on a rant against Greece’s oligarchs, which SYRIZA has continuously described as their enemy, as part of the party’s “us versus the world” propaganda. Tsipras stated:

“No matter how many powers one gathers [against us], no matter how many entrenched financial interests, publishing groups and non-governmental power centers, no matter how much black propaganda and fake news [you just knew this would be referenced, following the proud example of Tsipras’ neoliberal bosses in the EU and the United States], reality does not change.”

Reality may not change, but Tsipras did not clarify whether SYRIZA’s reality is the same as that of the majority of the people of Greece. And as Tsipras went on this rant against “black propaganda” and “fake news” and bad oligarchs, his government issued, just last week, five nationwide television licenses to incumbent stations owned by those very oligarchs. Viva la revolucion!

Tsipras then added, referring to the protests regarding the recent migrant occupation of Sappho Square:

“We will not tolerate the murderous, aggressive actions against the refugees, and phenomena such as those of this past Sunday.”

In other words, Tsipras once again uttered the only thing that SYRIZA knows how to express: an “us versus them” mentality, where it is SYRIZA standing alone fighting against some unspecified, dark, “fascist” threat. This plays in to historical divides between the left and right in Greece, dating back to the Greek civil war of 1947-1949 and the military junta which ruled Greece between 1967 and 1974.

Further evidence of this is evident right in Tsipras’ speech, as he attempted to manipulate the emotions of the people of Lesvos and the entire nation, stating:

“The flag of our country was raised high on this land by the grandfathers and grandmothers of many residents of this island, when they arrived here in boats as refugees from Smyrna [and elsewhere] to rebuild their lives, stand on their feet again, and reunite with their lost relatives. The flag of our nation was again raised high by the men and women of EAM [Greek wartime resistance movement against the Nazis] who led the way in the liberation of Lesvos from Nazism.”

What the Smyrna catastrophe of 1922 and the anti-Nazi liberation movement has to do with protesting an out-of-control influx of migrants is something that only Tsipras and other members of SYRIZA can (attempt to) answer. It is clear though that by throwing out the same old buzzwords regarding “fighting fascism” and attempting to draw parallels between the culturally Greek refugees who were forced to flee Asia Minor in 1922 and the so-called “refugees” blowing in to Greece today, Tsipras and other members of SYRIZA are attempting to manipulate emotions and to stifle any dissent, pre-emptively labeling any opponents of mass migration as fascists and racists.

If this seems far-fetched, consider the statements made immediately after Tsipras’ visit to Lesvos by SYRIZA MP Giorgos Pallis, who represents the island of Lesvos, calling the protesters “a small minority of fascists” in a speech before parliament (see video here).

Recently, SYRIZA government ministers even went as far as drawing parallels between residents who choose to defend themselves and their homes from burglars, and “far-right terrorists.”

So for SYRIZA, anyone who disagrees with their politics and with the inflow of so many “refugees” that as much as one-third of the population of the Lesvos now consists of migrants, is a fascist. How very leftist and tolerant!

It is also quite ironic that Tsipras will reference the raising of the Greek flag on the soil of Lesvos by the Greek refugees of Asia Minor in 1922 and by the resistance fighters of EAM during World War II, when it was SYRIZA’s own MP, Dimitris Vettas, speaking on the oligarch-owned and full-on neoliberal radio station Skai 100.3, who described the raising of the Greek flag on uninhabited Aegean islands which Turkey has repeatedly claimed and encroached upon, as “shameful.”

For SYRIZA, patriotism comes a la carte: it is good when it can score SYRIZA cheap political points, but it is fascist if it is used to oppose any of the policies of SYRIZA or, by extension, the EU and the troika.

As stated by Dimitris Karagiannis, President of the Lesvos Agricultural Association:

“How can he [Tsipras] talk about growth, when we are facing this huge migrant problem? They have thousands of refugees and migrants trapped and exhausted here, who are also creating problems for the local community. How can we talk about growth, when Turkish aggression is rising daily?”

Migrant free-for-all in the Aegean

While Tsipras and SYRIZA fling accusations of “fascism” towards any and all who disagree, the migrant influx in the Eastern Aegean continues unabated, despite an EU deal with Turkey which essentially bribes Turkish sultan Tayyip Erdogan in return for, supposedly, stemming the migrant flow towards Europe. The money continues to flow to Erdogan so he can build lavish palaces for himself, but the migrants continue to flow towards Greece and into Europe as well.

One recent report speaks of 350 new migrant arrivals on the islands of Lesvos and Chios in one day earlier this month. Also recently, 223 migrants arrived on Lesvos in one day, traveling on four boats. And just in the month of April, approximately 4,000 migrants entered the northern Greek region of Evros, which neighbors Turkey. It is in Evros where the government is now planning on constructing a new migrant registration and detention center.

As early as 2015, 90,000 migrants had passed through Lesvos — an island with a population of 85,000.

The Greek “justice” system, which the government is supposedly at war with but which never overtly issues decisions that would alter the neoliberal, pro-austerity, open borders status quo, has also gotten into the act. In an April decision by the Council of State, Greece’s highest administrative court, new migrants will be able to reside in any region of Greece that they choose and will be able to move around the country freely.

The five NGO workers, three Spaniards and two Danes, acquitted on charges of human smuggling by a court on the island of Lesvos.

In another recent decision, a court on the island of Lesvos acquitted five foreigners—three Spaniards and two Danes—who were employed by NGOs, for helping smuggle “refugees” into Greece. Representatives of every Spanish political party were said to have attended the trial, Amnesty International condemned the charges against the men, while the interior minister of the Spanish region of Andalucia and the aforementioned SYRIZA MP Giorgos Pallis testified in their defense – despite recommendations by prosecutors that the five men be found guilty. What does this decision, and the “solidarity” the five men enjoyed by Greek and Spanish politicians, tell you?

“Opposition” politicians can also play this game, as evidenced by the case of PASOK’s Thanassis Chimonas, who in a post on Facebook which can no longer be located, called the parents of a school on the island of Chios who “expressed their reservations” about allowing migrant children to attend the school “morons” and their children “bastards.” It’s no wonder SYRIZA and the “new” PASOK are said to be warming to each other recently, eyeing a possible electoral collaboration. Tolerance above all.

The free-for-all, of course, has impacts beyond just Greece’s borders. Illustrating the ease with which a migrant can receive counterfeit official papers, an Albanian woman was recently arrested in Great Britain, who had used a fake Greek identification card to get a £72,000 kidney transplant. Looking at the issue on a global scale, backers of the “open borders” regime recently created a mobile app allowing undocumented migrants to evade federal officials in the United States.

Tension in the Aegean continues

As the Eastern Aegean continues to enjoy the apparent benefits of open borders, tensions with neighboring Turkey have continued. Turkish violations of Greek airspace and maritime waters are a daily reality, and in a recent incident, a Turkish cargo shipped rammed into a Greek warship near Lesvos. This comes just two months after a Turkish military vessel slammed into and damaged a Greek coast guard boat in the Aegean. The Turks also recently claimed that they removed a Greek flag from one of the aforementioned uninhabited islets in the Aegean. Efforts of islanders to place Greek flags on these small islands were the ones Vettas described as “shameful,” though he did not clarify whether Turkish flags, or better yet, EU flags would be preferable.

And while Turkey continues to indefinitely detain two Greek soliders who were captured near the border in the region of Evros, Greek “justice” minister Stavros Kontonis—a dead ringer for President Snow from The Hunger Games and with approximately the same moral compass—rushed to release two Turks captured in the port of Kyllini, just days after another Turkish citizen captured in the Evros region was also released.

On the left, President Snow of the Hunger Games. On the right, Greek justice minister Stavros Kontonis. Can you tell them apart?

It is this same Kontonis, who once “talked tough” against specific oligarchs and football team owners unfavorable to SYRIZA (read: Evaggelos Marinakis of Olympiacos) and threatened to allow “Grexit” (of Greek football teams from international competition, of course, not a Greek departure from the Eurozone, oh noes!) in order to “clean up” football (as exemplified by the pro-SYRIZA gun-toting oligarch Ivan Savvidis). The same Kontonis who recently granted clemency to a convicted drug trafficker and waived his 50,000 euro fine and ten-year prison sentence, allowing him to work in the public or private sector, continue his doctoral studies, and to receive a visa to live abroad. The same Kontonis who is rumored to have such a violent temper (just as long as it isn’t against favorable oligarchs, migrants, or drug dealers) that he sent his mother to the hospital, not once but three times.

Pushback against SYRIZA continues

Opposition continues to grow against an increasingly out-of-control SYRIZA government which is pushing open borders at all costs, while its stance on national issues ranges from apparent inaction (in the case of the Greek soldiers detained in Turkey or the increased aggression of Turkey in the Aegean) to utter treason (through SYRIZA’s “negotiations” with FYROM, where the government is practically begging FYROM to accept the name Macedonia in some form).

In a recent public opinion survey, conducted in April, 54 percent of respondents in Greeks stated their belief that the government’s handles relations with Turkey “wrongly” or “rather wrongly.” And during May Day commemorations in the city of Halkida, organizers demanded that a SYRIZA MP in attendance leave.

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French opposition rejects Macron’s concessions to Yellow Vests, some demand ‘citizen revolution’

Mélenchon: “I believe that Act 5 of the citizen revolution in our country will be a moment of great mobilization.”

RT

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Macron’s concessions to the Yellow Vests has failed to appease protesters and opposition politicians, such as Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who called for “citizen’s revolution” to continue until a fair distribution of wealth is achieved.

Immediately after French President Macron declared a “social and economic state of emergency” in response to large-scale protests by members of the Yellow Vest movement, promising a range of concessions to address their grievances, left-wing opposition politician Mélenchon called on the grassroots campaign to continue their revolution next Saturday.

I believe that Act 5 of the citizen revolution in our country will be a moment of great mobilization.

Macron’s promise of a €100 minimum wage increase, tax-free overtime pay and end-of-year bonuses, Mélenchon argued, will not affect any “considerable part” of the French population. Yet the leader of La France Insoumise stressed that the “decision” to rise up rests with “those who are in action.”

“We expect a real redistribution of wealth,” Benoît Hamon, a former presidential candidate and the founder of the Mouvement Génération, told BFM TV, accusing Macron’s package of measures that benefit the rich.

The Socialist Party’s first secretary, Olivier Faure, also slammed Macron’s financial concessions to struggling workers, noting that his general “course has not changed.”

Although welcoming certain tax measures, Marine Le Pen, president of the National Rally (previously National Front), accused the president’s “model” of governance based on “wild globalization, financialization of the economy, unfair competition,” of failing to address the social and cultural consequences of the Yellow Vest movement.

Macron’s speech was a “great comedy,”according to Debout la France chairman, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, who accused the French President of “hypocrisy.”

Yet many found Melanchon’s calls to rise up against the government unreasonable, accusing the 67-year-old opposition politician of being an “opportunist” and “populist,” who is trying to hijack the social protest movement for his own gain.

Furthermore, some 54 percent of French believe the Yellow Vests achieved their goals and want rallies to stop, OpinionWay survey showed. While half of the survey respondents considered Macron’s anti-crisis measures unconvincing, another 49 percent found the president to be successful in addressing the demands of the protesters. Some 68 percent of those polled following Macron’s speech on Monday especially welcomed the increase in the minimum wage, while 78 percent favored tax cuts.

The Yellow Vest protests against pension cuts and fuel tax hikes last month were organized and kept strong via social media, without help from France’s powerful labor unions or official political parties. Some noted that such a mass mobilization of all levels of society managed to achieve unprecedented concessions from the government, which the unions failed to negotiate over the last three decades.

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Soros Mimics Hitler’s Bankers: Will Burden Europeans With Debt To ‘Save’ Them

George Soros is dissatisfied with the current EU refugee policy because it is still based on quotas.

The Duran

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Via GEFIRA:


After the Second World War, many economists racked their brains to answer the question of how Hitler managed to finance his armament, boost the economy and reduce unemployment.

Today his trick is well known. The economic miracle of Führer’s time became possible thanks to the so-called Mefo promissory notes.

The notes were the idea of the then President of the Reichsbank, Hjalmar Schacht, and served not only to finance the armament of the Wehrmacht for the Second World War, but also to create state jobs, which would otherwise not have been possible through the normal use of the money and capital markets, i.e. the annual increase in savings in Germany.

The Reich thus financed the armaments industry by accepting notes issued by the dummy company Metallurgische Forschungsgesellschaft GmbH (hence the name Mefo) rather than paying them in cash. The creation of money was in full swing from 1934 to 1938 – the total amount of notes issued at that time was 12 billion marks. The Reichsbank declared to the German banks that it was prepared to rediscount the Mefo notes, thus enabling the banks to discount them.

Because of their five-year term, the redemption of notes had to begin in 1939 at the latest. This threatened with enormous inflation. Since Schacht saw this as a threat to the Reichsmark, he expressed his doubts about the Reich Minister of Finance. But it did not help, and Schacht was quickly replaced by Economics Minister Walther Funk, who declared that the Reich would not redeem the Mefo notes, but would give Reich bonds to the Reichsbank in exchange. At the time of Funk, the autonomous Reichsbank statute was abolished, the Reichsbank was nationalized, and inflation exploded in such a way that Mefo notes with a circulation of 60 billion Reichsmark burdened the budget in post-war Germany.

George Soros also proposes such a money flurry in the style of Schacht and Funk.

Soros is dissatisfied with the current EU refugee policy because it is still based on quotas. He calls on the EU heads of state and governments to effectively deal with the migrant crisis through money flooding, which he calls “surge funding”.

“This would help to keep the influx of refugees at a level that Europe can absorb.”

Can absorb? Soros would be satisfied with the reception of 300,000 to 500,000 migrants per year. However, he is aware that the costs of his ethnic exchange plan are not financially feasible. In addition to the already enormous costs caused by migrants already in Europe, such a large number of new arrivals would add billions each year.

Soros calculates it at 30 billion euros a year, but argues that it would be worth it because “there is a real threat that the refugee crisis could cause the collapse of Europe’s Schengen system of open internal borders among twenty-six European states,” which would cost the EU between 47 and 100 billion euros in GDP losses.

Soros thus sees the financing of migrants and also of non-European countries that primarily receive migrants (which he also advocates) as a win-win relationship. He calls for the introduction of a new tax for the refugee crisis in the member states, including a financial transaction tax, an increase in VAT and the establishment of refugee funds. Soros knows, however, that such measures would not be accepted in the EU countries, so he proposes a different solution, which does not require a vote in the sovereign countries.

The new EU debt should be made by the EU taking advantage of its largely unused AAA credit status and issuing long-term bonds, which would boost the European economy. The funds could come from the European Stability Mechanism and the EU balance of payments support institution.

 “Both also have very similar institutional structures, and they are both backed entirely by the EU budget—and therefore do not require national guarantees or national parliamentary approval.“

In this way, the ESM and the BoPA (Balance of Payments Assistance Facility) would become the new Mefo’s that could issue bills of exchange, perhaps even cheques for Turks, Soros NGOs. Soros calculates that both institutions have a credit capacity of 60 billion, which should only increase as Portugal, Ireland and Greece repay each year the loans they received during the euro crisis. According to Soros, the old debts should be used to finance the new ones in such a way that it officially does not burden the budget in any of the EU Member States. The financial institutions that are to carry out this debt fraud must extend (indeed – cancel) their status, as the leader of the refugees expressed such a wish in his speech.

That Soros is striving to replace the indigenous European population with new arrivals from Africa and Asia is clear to anyone who observes its activities in Europe. The question is: what does he want to do this for and who is the real ruler, behind him, the real leader?

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The French People Feel Screwed

For the first time in his presidency, Macron is in trouble and Europe and America are looking on.

The Duran

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Authored by David Brown via The Gatestone Institute:


On December 4, French Prime Minister Édouard Phillipe told deputies of the ruling party, “La République en Marche”, that a proposed fuel tax rise, which had led to the largest protests France has seen in decades, would be suspended.

The protesters, called Gilets-Jaunes — “Yellow Vests,” because of the vests drivers are obliged by the government to carry in their vehicles in the event of a roadside breakdown — say that the fuel tax was the last straw from a president who took office with a promise to help the economically left-behind but instead has favoured the rich.

Even by French standards, the protests of the “Yellow Vests” during the weekend of December 1 were startling. Burning cars and vast plumes of grey smoke seemed to engulf the Arc De Triomphe as if Paris were at war. Comparisons were drawn with the Bread Wars of the 17th Century and the spirit of the Revolution of the 18th Century.

For more than two weeks, the “Yellow Vests” disrupted France. They paralyzed highways and forced roads to close — causing shortages across the country – and blocked fuel stations from Lille in the North to Marseilles in the South.

During protests in France’s capital, Paris, the “Yellow Vests” were soon joined by a more violent element, who began torching cars, smashing windows and looting stores. 133 were injured, 412 were arrested and more than 10,000 tear gas and stun grenades were fired.

One elderly lady was killed when she was struck by a stray grenade as she tried to shutter her windows against the melee.

There was talk of imposing a State of Emergency.

The “Yellow Vests” present the most significant opposition French President Emmanuel Macron has faced since coming to office in May 2017. Unlike previous protests in France, which have divided public opinion, these have widespread support – 72% according to a Harris Interactive Poll published December 1st.

Fuel tax rises — announced in November before being retracted on December — were intended to help bring down France’s carbon emissions by curbing the use of cars. Macron makes no secret of his wish to be seen as a global leader for environmental reform.

He forgets that back at home, among the people who elected him, fuel prices really matter to those outside big cities, where four-fifths of commuters drive to work and a third of them cover more than 30km each week.

The increases have incensed people in smaller communities, where they have already seen speed limits reduced to please the Greens and cuts to the local transport services.

These additional costs-of-living increases come at an extremely bad time for ordinary French people working outside of Paris. Lower-middle class families are not poor enough to receive welfare benefits but have seen their income flat-line whilst cost-of-living and taxes have risen.

An analysis by the Institut des Politiques Publiques think-tank shows that benefits cuts and tax changes in 2018 and 2019 will leave pensioners and the bottom fifth of households worse off, while the abolition of the wealth tax means that by far the biggest gains will go to the top 1%

This is tough to swallow. Macron is seen as being out of touch with ordinary people and is unlikely to escape his new title, “the President of the Rich.”

“People have this feeling that the Paris technocrats are doing complicated things to screw them,” said Charles Wyplosz, an economics professor at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva.

It is probably not as complex as that. The French people feel screwed.

As employment and growth are slowing, Macron, for the first time in his presidency, is under serious pressure. Unemployment is at 9%; his efforts to reform Europe are stalling, and his approval rating has plummeted to just 23% according to a recent opinion poll by IFOP.

Images of Macron at the Arc De Triomphe daubed in graffiti calling for him to step down, or worse, have done little to bolster his image abroad.

So far, Macron had said he would not bow to street protests. To underline his point, in September 2017, he called protestors against French labour-market reform “slackers”.

The political U-Turn on the fuel tax is a turning point for the Macron presidency. The question is : What next, both for Macron and the “Yellow Vests”?

Macron most likely needs to plough ahead with his reform agenda, and doubtless knows he has the support of a solid majority in the National Assembly to do so. France is crippled by debt (nearly 100% of GDP) and its grossly bloated public sector. There are 5.2 million civil servants in France, and their number has increased by 36% since 1983. These represent 22% of the workforce compared to an OCDE average of 15%.

Tax-expert Jean-Philippe Delsol says France has 1.5 million too many “fonctionnaires [officials]. When you consider that public spending in France now accounts for 57 per cent of gross domestic product. Soon the system will no longer function as there will be less and less people working to support more and more people working less”.

Macron’s mistake, in addition to a seeming inclination for arrogance, is not to have made national economic reform his absolute priority right from his initial grace period after his election. Lower public expenses would have made it possible to lower taxes, hence creating what economists call a virtuous circle. Instead, he waited.

Now, at a time when he is deeply unpopular and social unrest is in full sway he is looking to make further reforms in unemployment benefits, scaling them back by reducing the payments and the length of time beneficiaries can receive the money. The “President of the Rich” strikes again.

There is talk that he may also re-introduce the wealth tax to try to placate the protestors.

Macron’s presidential term lasts until May 13, 2022. Understandably, Macron will be focused on the elections to the European Parliament expected to be held May 23-26, 2019. Headlines have signalled that Marine Le Pen and the National Rally (formally National Front) are ahead in the polls at 20%, compared to Macron’s En Marche at 19%.

The shift is understandable, given the divide between the countryside, where Le Pen has solid support, and the cities, where Macron’s centre-left prevail.

In contrast, the “Yellow Vests” have galvanised support after standing up for the “impotent ordinary”, and seem much buoyed by the solidarity they have been shown by both fire fighters and the police. There are images online of police removing their helmets and firefighters turning their backs on political authority to show their support for the protestors.

Whilst Macron’s political opposition may be fragmented, this new breed of coherent public opposition is something new. Leaderless, unstructured and organised online, the “Yellow Vests” have gained support from the left and right, yet resisted subjugation by either.

Being leaderless makes them difficult to negotiate withor to reason with in private. The “Yellow Vests” seem acutely aware of this strength, given their firm rebuttal of overtures for peace talks from the Macron government.

Enjoying huge support from the public and with reforms to the social welfare system on the horizon, the “Yellow Vests” are not going away.

For the first time in his Presidency, Macron is in trouble and Europe and America are looking on.

After Macron rebuked nationalism during his speech at the armistice ceremony, Trump was quick to remind the French President of his low approval rating and unemployment rate near 10%. A stinging broadside from Trump on twitter suggests that Macron may well be relegated to Trump’s list of global “Losers“:

“Emmanuel Macron suggests building its own army to protect Europe against the U.S., China and Russia. But it was Germany in World Wars One & Two – How did that work out for France? They were starting to learn German in Paris before the U.S. came along. Pay for NATO or not!”

The “impotent ordinary” in the United Kingdom, who might feel betrayed over Brexit, and the nationalists in Germany, who have suffered under Merkel , are no doubt staring in wonder at the “Yellow Vests”, wishing for the same moxie.

The historian Thomas Carlyle, chronicler of the French Revolution, said the French were unrivaled practitioners in the “art of insurrection”, and characterised the French mob as the “liveliest phenomena of our world”.

Mobs in other countries, by comparison, he argued were “dull masses” lacking audacity and inventiveness. The blazing yellow vests of the French protest movement , however, have made Macron appear increasingly dull and weak too.

David Brown is based in the United Kingdom.

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