Sarkozy’s promised “rupture” turns out to be a rupture with French identity
Tiberge at Galliawatch
lives up to the name of her website
by tirelessly following the manic twists and turns of French politics—more so, I would guess, than any other English-language American publication. Since the accession of Nicholas Sarkozy as President of the Republic, she has had an especially sharp eye out for the ever-unfolding cultural leftism of this leader whom the entire mainstream media, in its Orwellian way, persists in describing as a “conservative.” I asked Tiberge a while ago if she would like to present her own summary of Sarkozy’s politics, and she has kindly written this very informative and insightful article for VFR.
THOUGHTS ON SARKOZY
It is much too early in the game to give an assessment of Nicolas Sarkozy’s presidency, but it is never to soon to express doubts. At Galliawatch I had been reporting on his speeches, his actions, and his character for a long time before he even became officially a candidate and my impression of him, based primarily on his own words, was that he was a multi-culturalist, an immigrationist, and a clever and devious proponent of Turkey’s membership in the EU. But he campaigned ardently (too ardently perhaps—was he “protesting too much”?) as the candidate of “rupture.” Rupture with the past errors, rupture with May 1968, rupture with forced repentance and media-induced guilt, rupture with failed economic policies. “I will not disappoint you,” he proclaimed many times. You had to believe the guy was sincere, even if you felt he would not live up to his high opinion of himself.
— end of article —
The balance-sheet so far is empty on one side, full on the other, in favor of racial mixtures, immigration, criminals, EU hegemony, and Turkey. If the French had every expectation that he would bring a “rupture,” at least in the domain of the economy, they did not anticipate a total rupture with French identity, and a frenzied race to permanently eradicate sovereignty and any few remaining hopes for a restoration of traditional values. The only ruptures have been the “breaking” of the Ramadan fast attended by three major French leaders, and the divorce with his wife Cecilia, not a surprise to anyone (nor a loss—she stated openly on French television a few years ago that she was “proud” not to have one drop of French blood in her veins).
Some websites are speaking of a Sarkozy as being “mad” and setting the stage for complete financial collapse. Prime Minister François Fillon frankly declared himself to be at the head of a government on the brink of bankruptcy.
Sarkozy’s stated goal was to be “open” to those of other political stripes. We have learned so far that “those” refers only to socialists. Beginning with high-level appointments to the ministries of foreign affairs and housing and urban development, then moving on to the chairmanships of countless committees and commissions, Nicolas Sarkozy has restored to power the fallen and disgraced socialists of the past quarter century who brought France to the painful state she is in now. Here are a few names:
Socialist Bernard Kouchner, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Senegalese socialist Rama Yade, secretary of State under Kouchner; socialist Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the World Monetary Fund; socialist Jack Lang, consultant on the commission to reform institutions; socialist Jean-Marie Bockel, secretary of State under Kouchner; Fadela Amara, a Muslim woman, secretary of State under Christine Boutin in the Ministry of Housing; Rachida Dati, a Muslim woman, Minister of Justice; socialists Eric Besson and Martin Hirsch, both secretaries under Prime Minister Fillon; socialist Jacques Attali, chairman of the commission on economic growth; socialist Michel Rocard (a former prime minister) consultant on the commission to evaluate education and teachers salaries, etc … These are just some of the unexpected and (for many) mind-boggling appointments made by President Sarkozy.
Two issues threatening the survival of France and traditional Europe, i.e. the establishment of a European Constitution, and Turkey’s membership in the EU, were thought, by the hopeful, to be in the hands of a “patriotic” Nicolas Sarkozy who had often repeated that he would not let the voters down on these issues.
Before the election Sarkozy reiterated his position that the natural borders of Europe do not include Turkey, but he expressed a wish for a very “close association” with Ankara, and drew up a plan for a “Mediterranean Union” in which Turkey would play a major role in the cultural and economic life of the region. After taking office he let it be known that he would not oppose the resumption of new negotiations on Turkey’s membership. It is generally felt by the conservative websites that he has no objection to Turkey’s membership, and that he may even be working towards it without saying so openly. It has also been suggested that he favors abolishing the referendum, provided for by the French Constitution, that would allow the people to vote before any new EU members are approved. (I’ve heard the British also may abolish their referendum. So much for democracy.)
As for a European Constitution, the Sarkozy-edited version was approved by the other 26 member States today (October 19) in Portugal. Final ratification is set for December 13. This document, 3080 pages long, is the so-called “mini-treaty” worked out by Sarkozy as a substitute for a real Constitution. Unfortunately, he has fooled no one among the pro-sovereignty factions who point out that a Constitution by any other name smells just as bad. After today’s approval by the 27 members Sarkozy said, “It was relatively easy.”
Nicolas Sarkozy broke no campaign promise over Islam. Quite the contrary, he kept his word and is forging ahead with his elaborate project called “Islam of France.” Islam of France is an Islam tailor-made for France, where the laws of the Republic and Islamic law co-exist in peace and serenity. In order for this to take place mosques by the dozens have to be built, government-sponsored organizations have to be created to support the Muslims of France and to raise money for the building of their giant cultural centers. Recently, while breaking the Ramadan fast he declared, “Islam, too, is France.” And he gave a post in the ministry of immigration to Sami Boubakeur, the son of the rector of the Paris mosque.
On immigration he has made it clear that he wants not fewer, but more immigrants, primarily Africans, black or Muslim, only he wants them legal and selected for their skills. This is his so-called “selective immigration.” His minister in charge of immigration, Brice Hortefeux, has been entrusted with the task of deporting a certain number of illegals every year. One hitch in this plan is that long-standing special agreements between Paris and Algiers may prevent the deportation of Algerians, who constitute the great majority of illegal immigrants in France. Currently there is a debate over DNA testing of immigrants to verify their affiliation with other family members living in France. While it is regarded as a “tough” measure, it has nothing to do with stopping immigration, only identifying those trying to sneak in illegally.
The economy is the same as Jacques Chirac left it, although Sarkozy was very sure he would make major changes. He had promised to limit through quotas the imports of textiles and clothing from China, but a recent article indicates that he has done exactly the opposite—the quotas have been lifted!
His socialist economic advisor Jacques Attali has proposed some measures to jump-start the economy, one of which would allow the State to evict tenants and reclaim real-estate from towns that have not constructed the legally prescribed number of housing projects. This real estate would be used to build “social housing” at the rate of 500,000 homes a year for the next three years. He also recommends building 10 cities of fewer than 50,000 inhabitants as “laboratories of ecology and social mixing.” Such a city would be known as an “Ecopolis.”
We can only pray that even Sarko is smart enough to say no to Attali (who has also said he would euthanize people over 65 as a cost-saving measure.)
The bottom line? On the economic reform he had promised, he is all talk and no results. In reality he is as “bien pensant” and accommodating to the left, if not more so, than his predecessors.
Sarkozy on race
During a trip to Africa last July Sarkozy gave an incoherent, or at least cryptic, speech in Dakar, Senegal that goes down in history as the “Discours de Dakar.” In the speech he denounced (racial) purity as tantamount to the greatest evil in the world. I feel the speech is a good example of Sarkozy’s inability to separate issues. Is this speech about the advantages of racial mixing or about the inherent backwardness of Africans? Is it about helping Africa? Or is it a warning to the West about the need to resign oneself to racial mixing? [LA note: see Tiberge’s e-mail below the article explaining Sarkozy’s use of the French term for racial mixing.]
Young people of Africa, do not yield to the temptation of purity because it is a sickness, a sickness of the intelligence, and the most dangerous thing in the world.Note: He uses racial terms “metissage” and “se metisser” to speak of what seems to be the notion of “living side by side,” without necessarily intermarrying. But the inference is clear—he wants all races to mix together. Intermarriage becomes inevitable:
Young people of Africa, do not cut yourself off from what enriches you, do not amputate a part of yourself. Purity is a confinement, purity is intolerance. Purity is a fantasy that leads to fanaticism.
The problem with Africa is that too often it judges the present in relation to the purity of its origins which are totally imaginary and that no one can hope to revive.
The challenge for Africa is that of all civilizations, all cultures, all people who want to keep their identity without confining themselves because confinement is fatal.
Civilizations are great insofar as they participate in the great diversity of the human spirit.
The weakness of Africa, where so many brilliant civilizations have flourished, was that for so long it did not participate in this great diversity (“metissage”). It paid dearly. This separation from the world made it vulnerable. But from its misfortunes, Africa drew a new strength by eventually mixing in with others (se metisser).”
This mixing together, painful as it was, is the true strength and the true opportunity for Africa at the very moment when the first world civilization is emerging. I think the speech, which was strongly criticized for a variety of reasons, is that of a man who doesn’t think through what he is saying. He actually did insult the Africans by telling them they had to mix in with others in order to succeed. His contempt shows through in his rant about purity—but remember he probably would say the same thing to white nationalists.
Here he is just after the election, feeling very much the Frenchman:
… I have felt since my earliest childhood an inexpressible pride in belonging to a grand, ancient and beautiful nation, France. I love France as one loves a loved one who gave me everything, now it is my turn to give back to France what France gave to me.Need I add that anyone who loves France does not want racial mixing beyond a very minimal and tolerable level.
My priority will be to create a society in which Frenchmen want to speak to each other, understand each other, and work together. The French have spoken. They have chosen a break with the past. A break with the habits and behaviors of the past. I am going to rehabilitate work, authority, morale, respect. I am going to restore the honor of national identity and render to the French people the pride in being French. I’m going to put an end to repentance which is a form of self-hatred and to the conflicted memories that feed the hatred of others….
Thanks again to Tiberge for this terrific article. I doubt we could get from any mainstream U.S. publication the kind of information and perspective she has provided.
Re Sarko’s Africa speech, at first glance I don’t see a contradiction in his attacks on racial purity. He’s telling whites they must mix with nonwhites, and he’s telling nonwhites they must mix with whites. If he seems to be putting down African culture, which I think he is doing, then he’s only being consistent with his universalism. He’s saying African culture is backward because it’s not mixed enough with non-African cultures, just as he’s telling whites they are evil because they are not mixed enough with nonwhite cultures. So blacks, by mixing with whites, cease being backward and become civilized, while whites, by mixing with blacks, cease being evil and become good. There is thus a perfect complementarity between the races, consummated through universalism.
I’m tempted to quote Paul McCartney’s “Ebony / And Ivory / Standing together / In perfect harmony,” except that in Sarkozy’s left-liberal vision of a reconfigured humanity, there would be no ebony and ivory any more because everyone would be of mixed race.
LA wrote to Tiberge:
You say that metissage of races means living side by side without necessarily intermarrying, but then you add that this living side by side must ultimately mean intermarriage.
Since there was an ambiguity, I went to the translation page Babelfish and typed in “Le metissage des gens.” The English translation was: “The interbreeding of people.” That’s unambiguous!
Also,apologies for leaving out the French accent marks, VFR is forced for the time being to use a browser that turns accent marks into ugly code.
“Metissage” does indeed mean mixed blood. But in his speech he did not go that far. He spoke of “le grand metissage de l’esprit humain,” which I translated as “the great diversity of the human spirit,” because “mixed blood” of the human spirit wouldn’t make sense. He was extending the meaning of “metissage” to include “mixing together of ideas.” He seemed to indicate that the Africans and Europeans should intermingle so that Africans can benefit from being around the whites, but he didn’t speak of marriage. Thus he seemed to be using “metissage” metaphorically, but in fact nobody was fooled by it. The Africans were insulted. The comments to the article at the website where the excerpts were posted were quite clear—they knew he meant mixed marriage.
I repeat, his symbolic or metaphorical use of the word did not fool anybody. It’s hard to justify using “metissage” in any context other than racial intermarriage. If he had said “prendre contact les uns avec les autres” instead of “se metisser” it would have been clear that he was speaking only of intellectual mixing. But he used “se metisser.”
… > “grand metissage de l’esprit humain”
What a disgusting image…
… Yes, “grand metissage de l’esprit humain” is awful….
Maureen C. writes:
In addition to Sarkozy’s true political focus, we have the most recent headline showing his true personal focus. From The Sunday Times at the Drudge Report: “French tongues wag as Nicolas Sarkozy plays the field.”.
It seems as soon as Sarkozy became president, he dumped his wife to take full advantage of the job’s carnal potential (thereby, of course, following in the footsteps of Chirac and Mitterand).
The decolletage of female leaders like Nancy Pelosi appear to be small potatoes when placed alongside the sexual predations of male political leaders, including (perhaps even especially) those of homosexuals like the media-outed Larry Craig and self-outed Barney Frank.
The U.S., of course, lives in a glass house and can barely throw stones at Sarkozy. We remember the smarmy sexual opportunism of JFK and Clinton. No wonder none of the West’s leaders can find time to defend their countries against the clever machinations of predator cultures. As presidents, they apparently view their posts as “chick-lures”; or in the U.S., as Congressmen, as “making the U.S. safe for homosexuality.”
It recalls Nero’s “fiddling around” while Rome burned.
In fact, the Sarkozy’s marriage ran on the rocks (in 1995 I believe) when she was photographed walking hand in hand with a man in New York City. The Sarkozys separated for a while. Then he asked her to return. So she was cheating, and he forgave her. This doesn’t exactly fit Maureen’s picture of things. Also, Cecilia Sarkozy has repeatedly stated her lack of desire to be a politician’s wife and especially a president’s wife. As Tiberge mentions, she also told an interviewer she was “proud” not to have a single drop of French blood. It sounds as if she was dumping all over her husband personally and politically.
So, while Sarko is hardly a man of traditional morality (the indications are that he’s a swine in multiple areas of life), it is not correct to say that he dumped his wife the moment he became president. She had already dumped him, and he was (it seemed) trying to hold on to her. She’s the one who ended the marriage.
Maureen writes: “It seems as soon as Sarkozy became president, he dumped his wife to take full advantage of the job’s carnal potential (thereby, of course, following in the footsteps of Chirac and Mitterand).”
The Times article points to a general pattern of flirtation, both before he became president and afterward; but other than the affair he had after his wife left him in 2005, the article does not indicate any carnal affairs while he’s been president.
On Maureen’s larger point of the connection between sexual license and national decline, a reader in England just made that point in an e-mail I’ll be posting soon.
LA writes to Tiberge:
“Thus he seemed to be using ‘metissage’ metaphorically, but in fact nobody was fooled by it. The Africans were insulted. The comments to the article at the website where the excerpts were posted were quite clear—they knew he meant mixed marriage.”
What were they insulted by? The idea that they should interbreed with whites, or the idea that they needed white ideas etc? Wouldn’t both be insulting?
I can’t answer that one exactly. The comments I spoke of were by angry French people at the nationalist website that posted the excerpts.
Back when he gave the speech I remember reading that the Africans were insulted because he was holding them responsible for their destiny, instead of blaming the white man. But this is crazy. The whole speech, which is very long, very elementary, and very repetitive, is posted at the Elysee website. In it, he DOES castigate mercilessly the white man for destroying Africa. THEN, he launches into the purity part of the speech where he says essentially that whites are necessary for African improvement, using the “m” word.
Here’s an interesting line from the speech:
“Young people of Africa, European civilization was wrong to believe itself superior to that of your ancestors, but henceforth European civilization belongs to you too.”
So I don’t know what he’s saying except that whites foolishly destroyed Africa, and now they have to open their own civilization to Africans, so that Africans can become as successful as Europeans. It’s totally crazy.
I don’t know if the Africans took offense at the things that were insulting to their intelligence or the things that flattered their intelligence, like they are responsible for their destiny.
Here’s another sample of his incoherence:
“Muslim civilization, Christianity, colonization, beyond the crimes and errors committed in their name that are inexcusable, opened the African minds and hearts to the universal and to history.”
I don’t know what Africans were insulted by, but the speech, viewed as a whole, is a monstrosity. Maybe they sensed that.
“Young people of Africa, European civilization was wrong to believe itself superior to that of your ancestors, but henceforth European civilization belongs to you too.”
The second half of the sentence is a complete non-sequitur from the first half. What does the fact that “European civilization now belongs to you” have to do with the superiority that Europeans wrongly felt toward Africans in the past? And what is the meaning of the conjunction “but” that joins the two clauses? The sentence only makes sense if we add an unspoken clause. I will now translate the sentence, while adding the previously unspoken clause and putting it in bold:
“Young people of Africa, we were wrong to believe ourselves civilizationally and racially superior to you, because you were civilizationally and racially equal. But that wrong from the past has now been righted, because we are making up for our wrongful attitude of superiority toward you by opening the doors of Europe to the peoples of Africa and the rest of the nonwhite world. . Henceforth European civilization belongs to you too.”
And indeed, doesn’t this fit the European immigration of the last fifty years. Isn’t it commonly explained as an expression of guilt over colonization?
But of course, if European civilization is not superior to African, then why does Sarko say that Africa is behind as a result of being cut off from European civilization? The answer would seem to be that he’s expressing this African lack, not in terms of lacking a superior civilization, but in terms of lacking the enriching metissage of the human spirit that raises up everyone.
“He uses racial terms ‘metissage’ and ‘se metisser’ to speak of what seems to be the notion of ‘living side by side,’ without necessarily intermarrying. But the inference is clear—he wants all races to mix together. Intermarriage becomes inevitable.”
If I were a psychologist, I would say that this is a case of projection—is that the right term? I noticed that people often experience their mixed heritage as a deep trauma and try to heal it by becoming the most shrill advocates of multi-culturalism. They are exorcising their personal ghosts by becoming hysterical about the nationalist sentiment and the desire of other people to preserve their identity, taking it as a personal threat to the legitimacy of their existence. It is Sarkozy’s way of coming to terms with his mixed heritage. This is not true about everybody, of course, but it is common enough.
I agree with your general idea. But what exactly is Sarko’s mixed heritage? I know he’s partly of Hungarian background and I recently heard that his ancestry is part Jewish.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at October 21, 2007 05:32 PM | Send
I just looked up his family background in Wikipedia. Very interesting. His maternal grandfather was a sephardic Jew from Salonika who converted to the Catholic church when he married sarko’s maternal grandmother, who was French Catholic (the only one of his grandparents who was French). His father was a Hungarian refugee of wealthy mixed Protestant and Catholic background who fled Hungary when the Communists entered. So he’s of double immigrant background: two different immigrant backgrounds. And his father deserted his mother and Sarko and his two brothers when Sarko was four years old, and did not even support them financially even though he was wealthy. Nice. The mother and the three boys were raised in a mansion owned by his maternal grandfather, who was a well-to-do urologist and Gaullist. He says his maternal grandfather was a bigger influence on him growing up than his father whom he rarely saw. So, his immigrant Hungarian father abandoned him and he rarely saw him. To be the son of an immigrant is one thing. To be the son of an immigrant who has cruelly abandoned your mother and you and doesn’t even support you financially though he is wealthy is something else. Sarko says he suffered numerous humiliations in childhood which shaped his character. These humiliations included his complicated ethnic background, the fact that his father had abandoned the family, the fact that the family was living in a very wealthy Parisian suburb but was not itself wealthy, and Sarko’s short stature.