French National Front commits crimes, hoping immigrants will be blamed


This video from France is about French National Front leader Marine Le Pen and German ex-officer of Hitler’s SS and neo-nazi leader Franz Schönhuber, a political ally and personal friend of the Le Pen family.

By Kanda Gabriel in France:

French neo-fascists committed street crimes to stoke insecurity and fear

17 June 2015

Adrien Desport, a 25-year-old former member of the neo-fascist National Front (FN), and five other FN militants aged 19 to 25, face charges of torching cars on the night of April 8-9 in the Paris suburb of Mitry-Mory in the Seine-et-Marne district. They have also been accused of damaging private property and falsely reporting a crime.

Desport and other FN militants have acknowledged the wrongdoing. Deputy prosecutor Emmanuel Dupic said, “Adrien Desport seems to be the leader of the gang. The charges are serious, there were numerous victims. And they endanger democracy, according to which one must go through the ballot box to defend one’s ideas, not street raids.”

The FN militants used their own criminal activity to boost FN’s law-and-order campaign on insecurity and to blame impoverished immigrant youths for suburban riots. According to police sources, “They organized drinking parties with cocaine and then carried out punitive expeditions to stoke fears of insecurity and win votes for the FN.”

Desport was also charged with making false complaints to police on March 28, when he claimed that he was attacked with tear gas while putting up campaign posters in Châtelet-en-Brie ahead of local elections. “They gassed themselves to make people believe there was an attack,” said the police source.

At the time, Desport reported the fabricated event on his blog, complaining of the “indifference of the media and of certain elected officials.”

During a police search at Desport’s house, Le Parisien reported, “investigators found a police flashlight, a rubber-bullet pistol declared at local police headquarters, tear gas grenades, and a pair of handcuffs.”

Police investigated the matter for two weeks after an FN activist filed a complaint denouncing the actions of some of his colleagues in Seine-et-Marne at the end of May. On June 9, police arrested the FN members, including Desport. Desport has been placed in police custody, while the other FN militants were placed under judicial supervision until a trial which will begin July 15.

A few days after torching the cars, Desport reported the incident on his blog, condemning the arson, in order to fuel FN’s hysterical law-and-order campaign. On April 11, he published an open letter to the inhabitants of Mitry-Mory denouncing “increasingly pervasive” criminality and the “sense of insecurity” in the city.

Desport wrote that the FN “has proposed for years maintaining police services in Mitry-Mory, which has lost its police station; the installation of security cameras in dangerous zones in the city, which everyone is aware of; the creation of an armed municipal police to eliminate the feeling of insecurity that affects our citizens. We must have personnel and material resources, not subsidies for a few NGOs. Security is for everyone.”

Desport joined the FN in 2009, at the age of 15. He was the FN candidate in the 2011 cantonal election in the Paris area. Between 2013 and 2014, he was appointed FN deputy secretary and press attaché in the Seine-et-Marne region. In 2014, he was awarded with the medal of honor by the FN’s current national leader, Marine Le Pen.

Since the incident, the FN has distanced itself from Desport. FN official Nathalie Pigeot told VICE News that Desport and his associates had been “suspended from the party,” adding that she expected them to be expelled permanently.

In line with moves in the French ruling elite to present the FN as a “normal” party, official media and parties—from the ruling Socialist Party (PS) to the right-wing The Republicans (LR), as well as pseudo-left allies of the PS such as the New Anti-capitalist Party—largely glossed over or dismissed the incident.

Reporting on the incident, Le Monde sought to downplay Desport’s significance, writing that he “is not an elected official and never was. The young militant does not have a top position in the FN, which he joined in 2011. He was only a deputy regional secretary, for a time, of the Seine-et-Marne region, … This citizen of Mitry-Mory saw himself as a leading political figure, however. A few burned cars and a simulated assault could stymie this plan, which was already not off to a good start.”

The FN members’ criminal offenses raise an obvious question: what was the social atmosphere in which deceit and petty crime could serve to advance a political agenda? This is bound up with the turn of all France’s capitalist parties, from the mainstream PS and LR to the pseudo-left parties, to support police repression and law-and-order hysteria. They used these policies as a way of diverting social anger over austerity, while strengthening police powers to monitor and repress rising social anger in the working class.

During his presidency, former UMP President Nicolas Sarkozy championed law-and-order sentiment, appealing to neo-fascist voters. After coming to power in 2012, the PS government of President François Hollande largely took over these policies, poisoning the political atmosphere and making militaristic and law-and-order appeals to FN voters.

While destroying the living standards of the working class, Hollande’s government is stoking up pro-FN sentiment, including expelling undocumented immigrants and rounding up and deporting members of the Roma community. At the same time, it constantly advocates reactionary security measures, including broadening the use of surveillance cameras and drones in cities. Recently, the PS adopted a surveillance law allowing the police and the intelligence services to spy on the entire population.

All these measures were based on the hyping of manufactured statistics, lies and the targeting of vulnerable populations. Under these conditions, no one in the political establishment wanted to examine the social roots of Desport’s attempt, on a somewhat smaller scale, to stoke law-and-order hysteria based on faked reports of street crime.

First ever Kurdish wheatear in France


This video says about itself:

The Kurdistan Wheatear (Oenanthe xanthoprymna), also known as the Kurdish Wheatear, Chestnut-rumped Wheatear or Red-rumped Wheatear, is a species of bird in the Muscicapidae family. The Red-tailed Wheatear (O. chrysopygia) was formerly considered a subspecies of this bird but is now often regarded as a separate species.

From Birdguides.com in Britain:

Rarity finders Kurdish Wheatear in Auvergne — a first for France

At 1,464 m Puy de Dôme is the highest point of the Chaîne des Puys, a chain of extinct volcanoes in the Auvergne region of France. The summit, often very windswept, is covered by an alpine meadow on which the Romans built a temple dedicated to the god Mercury. In spring and summer, it is a very busy place as a lot of tourists visit, either by walking or by train. Typical breeding species include Water Pipit, Skylark and Crag Martin.

Situated near Clermont-Ferrand, the site is easy for me to visit and I regularly make the ascent early in the morning, at a time when I am often alone and birds are easy to observe. On Sunday 17 May, on the ruins of the Roman temple, I observed a wheatear of a species unknown to me, but I had no field guide, no camera and I was in a hurry. I thus went back to the summit the following afternoon.

On arrival at the temple at 4 pm I immediately found the bird in the same place, and watched it for one hour. It was very showy, coming to within 10 metres. By this point there was no doubt: this wheatear, with a black throat, white supercilium, grey-brown back and a rusty red rump, was a Kurdish Wheatear!

Perched on the walls of the temple it hunted insects and sang in the sunshine, indifferent to the people surrounding it, making for a wonderful observation in perfect conditions. How had it arrived here, so far from its breeding range in the Middle East?

Arriving back home I learned that this was the first known sighting in France, and indeed Western Europe. The bird was still present on Tuesday 19th, when it was twitched by several French birders, but not seen thereafter. What a symbol that this rarest of visitors chose to settle at a location which asks to be classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site!

Kurdish Wheatear has a restricted breeding range from eastern Turkey to south-west Iran and winters in the Sinai, eastern Egypt and Sudan. This represents the first record for France and continues an excellent run of vagrants in the country so far in 2015 which includes the first national records of Asian Desert Warbler and Bimaculated Lark, the second Eastern Black Redstart and White-crowned Black Wheatear (the latter the first since 1884), and third Little Swift.

Alex Clamens

Friday 22nd May 2015

Facebook censors 150-year-old Courbet painting


This is a French TV video, about Facebook censoring Gustave Courbet‘s painting L’origine du monde in 2011.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands, today:

In France, a teacher and Facebook argue today about a 149 year old painting. The man posted in 2011 a picture of L’Origine du Monde (The Origin of the World) by Gustave Courbet on his Facebook page, and the social media corporation deleted his account.

The painting shows the naked lower body of a woman lying on a bed, pudendal towards the viewer. An Ottoman ambassador in Paris is said to have commissioned Courbet’s painting for his personal erotica collection in 1866.

Facebook considers the work of art to be offensive. The teacher, in his fifties, an art lover and a father of three, thinks that is absurd. The judge will as of today consider whether it is pornography or art.

Scandalize

For Facebook, there is even more at stake. In its rules, it says that in case of litigation US law prevails. Against that, the French teacher has already been objected successfully . The French court deems itself competent to consider the case.

Facebook did not agree with that and appealed. “It will be a long legal battle,” says correspondent Ron Linker.

The original of the painting which measures 50 by 50 centimeters hangs in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. “When you walk towards the painting, there is an accompanying text, in which the museum warns that this painting does not cease to shock” says Linker. “That’s one and a half a century later still the case, perhaps exactly what the artist wanted.”

“Edouard Manet’s ‘Olympia’ scandalized nearly everyone when it was first exhibited at the 1865 Paris Salon, its nude subject confronting the viewer with an unflinching gaze and brazen sexuality. Francisco Goya’s Nude Maja, created over half of a century earlier, was similarly shocking, both because of the model’s visible pubic hair and palpable lack of shame. A third equally heretical and pivotal nude painting, however, is often erased from the conversation: American artist Romaine Brooks’ 1910 ‘White Azaleas.'” (Read more here)

“As art lovers know all too well, the art history canon is also subjected to censorship on social media, with boobies crafted by the greatest minds in art history deemed overly scandalous for Facebook, even hundreds of years after their creation. So, we’ve decided to tidy up these naughty archives, replacing the womanly nipples of yore with their masculine (and totally, obviously unobjectionable) counterparts.” (Read more here)

Journalist Laurie Penny banned from Facebook for using pseudonym: here.