Thursday 29th of July 2021


macronmacron                                               French PresIdent Emmanuel Macron has seemingly had a change of heart regarding NATO, the North Atlantic military alliance he dismissed as ‘brain-dead’ in 2019.   

Macron insisted on Thursday that France sought to “revitalize” its alliance with NATO – still with a pointed call for reform, but a far cry from 2019’s complaints that the alliance was almost “brain-dead.” Macron told the Economist that year that “what we are currently experiencing is the brain death of NATO.” 

Speaking to the press in Paris alongside NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Macron said the alliance’s upcoming summit in June “must deliver a political clarification” on its role and “strategic priorities.”


“We want to revitalize the alliance and, for that, we need clarification, cohesion, and responsibility,” he said, adding that the bloc must be clear on the “values, principles and rules” that underpin it. The comment could be interpreted as a jab at Turkey, which the French president and other NATO leaders have criticized for taking unilateral military action without warning partner countries first.

The president’s earlier statements disparaging NATO came ahead of its 2019 summit and the internal bad feelings seem to have begun to dissipate since, suggesting any change of heart felt by the French leader might have been linked – at least in part – to the departure of polarizing US President Donald Trump. 

Indeed, Macron alluded to Trump in the 2019 interview, arguing that it was time to “reassess the reality of what NATO is in the light of the commitment of the United States” and that it  “only works if the guarantor of last resort functions as such.” 

He shocked his fellow alliance members by suggesting he “didn’t know” whether he still believed in the effectiveness of another of the alliance’s founding principles, wondering aloud whether an attack against one member would still be met with collective defence. Washington is “turning its back on us,” Macron fretted to the magazine, insisting the US was showing signs of distancing itself from its European allies, such as making political moves before tipping off its allies.


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EU should not be forced to choose sides...


A top French military official has said that while it will be difficult for the EU to forge a “common political identity,” Europe must not be forced to choose sides in the rivalry between the US and China.

In an interview with Le Figaro, the chief of the defense staff, Army General Francois Lecointre, spoke about the dangers coming from powers that “challenge the stability and international law,” in particular, Russia, China, and Iran.

“We are heading towards a reorganization of the world order that is structured around the competition between the United States and China,” the general said, adding that every nation “will be called upon to choose sides.”

It will be very difficult exactly because neither France, nor Europe is interested in it. While our relations with the United States cannot be called into question, which is essential, we must not allow ourselves to be drawn into an unnuanced confrontation that may emerge between China and the United States.

The US and China have clashed over numerous issues in recent years, including trade, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. US officials have been pressuring European nations into removing Chinese telecom technology from their markets, among other things.

French President Emmanuel Macron said earlier this year that it would be “counterproductive” for the EU to unequivocally join the US in its rivalry with Beijing.

When asked if Europeans would have strategic autonomy, Lecointre said the EU was initially built around economic ties, and the forging of “a common political identity will undoubtedly be more difficult in the short term.”



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nato and islam...


The problem of France's Islamisation stems from the Cold War era, when Islamists were used by NATO allies as a tool against the Soviet bloc, says French politician Karel Vereycken, warning that now the transatlantic alliance is about to drag France into bigger trouble.

Earlier this month, conservative magazine Valeurs Actuelles published an open letter signed by active French soldiers who warned that the country was heading for "civil war" because of a growing Islamist threat.   

The letter released by the magazine on 9 May echoed a previous one, published by the same media outlet on 21 April and signed by active officers and retired generals. The senior military brass warned that Islamists had been taking over large parts of the country's territory.

President Macron and France' Ministry of Defence denounced both letters as a "crude political scheme", with the French Army's Chief of Staff General Francois Lecointre hinting that the signatories should quit the armed forces. For her part, Marine Le Pen, a candidate in next year's presidential election and head of the political party National Rally, supported the service members' concerns.

The French Military's Letters & Macron's Fight Against Islamism  

The timing of these warnings could be linked to the upcoming 2022 elections and it can't be ruled out that some of the military personnel who signed the letters are sympathisers of Marine Le Pen, suggests Karel Vereycken, a political analyst and vice president of Solidarite & Progres, a political party founded by Jacques Cheminade. 

"The French 2022 presidential gamble is already becoming a scramble", he says. "Both Macron and Marine want to polarise the debate exclusively on the main issue they expect will hand them over a presidential victory: public security and immigration. They also want the voters to forget they both agree on paying the national debt at all costs and want France to remain in the EU, in NATO and keep the euro".

In October 2020, French President Emmanuel Macron announced a plan to crack down on "foreign influences" and "Islamist radicalisation" in France. Late last year, France was shocked by the decapitation of French teacher Samuel Paty and a brutal stabbing attack on parishioners at the Notre-Dame basilica in Nice by radical Islam sympathisers.



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nato non-non-oui...


In 2019, French President Emmanuel Macron expressed doubt about the effectiveness of Article 5 of the NATO Treaty which stipulates that an attack on one member state is "an attack on all of its members". 

France has apparently made it clear that it strongly opposes NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg's idea that member states should jointly fund more of the alliance's work, Reuters reported on Friday.

The news outlet cited an unnamed French armed forces ministry source as saying that "if the idea is to brutally increase the contribution of countries to common budgets and change the philosophy of NATO, moving from national responsibility to the dilution of responsibility, France"s response will be clearly no".

The source added that for the French government, "it is not an issue of NATO versus Europe but NATO versus the national defence of each member state".

With France already meeting NATO's target to spend 2% of its GDP on the alliance's defence budget, Paris is still open to hearing counter-arguments and details pertaining to Stoltenberg's proposal, according to the insider.

Stoltenberg Calls for Increasing NATO Funding

The remarks followed the NATO chief pledging in February that he would call on the member states' defence ministers "to increase NATO's funding" for the alliance's "core deterrence and defence activities".

"All these [military] capabilities are provided by allies, and those allies that provide those capabilities also cover all the costs. My proposal is that NATO should cover some of those costs", Stoltenberg added.

He insisted that "spending more together" would demonstrate "the strength" of member states' commitment to defend each other under the NATO Treaty's Article 5.

"And it would contribute to fairer burden-sharing", the NATO secretary-general underlined amid reports that the proposal envisages injecting about $20 billion into common budgets over 10 years.

Reuters also quoted several unnamed diplomats as saying that the proposal is seen as a response to the EU's long-standing tensions with the US, who has repeatedly accused its European allies of failing to contribute enough to their own defence.

Stoltenberg's idea further reportedly seeks to tackle French President Emmanuel Macron's previous warning about the current inefficiency of NATO, which was formed in 1949 to contain an alleged military threat from then-USSR.

Macron Claims NATO is 'Brain Dead'

In an interview with The Economist in 2019, Macron asserted that NATO was experiencing "brain death" due to a lack of coordination and America's unpredictability under then-POTUS Donald Trump.

The French president also threw doubt on the effectiveness of Article 5 of the NATO Treaty, which says that an "attack on one member of NATO is an attack on all of its members".

"I don't know, but what will Article Five mean tomorrow?", Macron said.French Defence Minister Florence Parly was quick to react at the time, arguing that Macron didn't mean the death of NATO but wanted to make it clear that "nobody should ignore the crisis that the alliance has been going through".


In November 2018, Macron insisted that the EU should have a "real European army" independent of the US and NATO to be able to defend itself from alleged threats emanating from Washington, Beijing, and Moscow. After the idea was endorsed by Merkel, Berlin and Paris agreed on creating a joint aircraft and combat system, inviting other European states to join the project.


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le camembert politic stinker...


"There are no scutineers, no citizens who vote": in the polling stations, a feeling of desertion...

Two out of three French people did not vote on Sunday for regional and departmental elections, a record abstention under the Fifth Republic.



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