If so, why did they let it happen? See the Giuliani-Kerik story circa -history repeats itself. Notice how quickly Gerard Colomb pleaded his need to return to Lyon when the investigation began. And the irony is that Macron has not been friendly to Putin, but nursed Benalla —a viper in his breast— who was.http://discover-migme.hipwee.com/11918-cell-tracker.php
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With friends like Colomb, who needs enemies? Once in power, you are no longer the candidate you once were and the golden rule is to get rid of all those who helped you achieve it. Your email address will not be published. Art Goldhammer: French Politics. Murard L. Ollivier-Yaniv C. Pignarre P. Poggi M-Pet al. Saout Ch. Vandenberghe M. Villey, R. Merci aux participants pour leurs commentaires. Mieulet et C. Cazal et J-P.
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But to understand what's really going on, it's necessary to remember how frequently French presidents have turned to unofficial security personnel to carry out their bidding, the trauma such incidents left on the national psyche, and how they are now being awakened by the Benalla affair. Details of the Benalla case, which has seen top Macron aides face questions in parliament, are easy enough to parse: Macron's deputy chief of staff, a year-old Frenchman of Moroccan origin who grew up in a hardscrabble suburb, was caught on camera at a May Day protest borrowing a helmet from a riot police officer, striding out into the crowd and manhandling two protesters whom police thought may have been throwing projectiles.
It was a bizarre decision from Alexandre Benalla, who had no obvious business being at the May Day protest, or illegally impersonating a police officer. When Macron's office found out, they gave him a slap on the wrist in the form of a two-week suspension. Parliament has since questioned Macron's interior minister, his chief of police and, on Tuesday afternoon, his chief of staff and head of Cabinet, about the circumstances of the case and Benalla's status.
After a six-day silence, Macron finally spoke out Tuesday evening , telling members of government and his centrist party: "The person responsible here is me You cannot be a leader during the good times and balk when they are difficult. If they want someone to be responsible, he is standing before you. And yet, unanswered questions are sure to keep feeding the outrage machine: Why didn't Macron come down harder on Benalla? Why did the young man, a former bodyguard, enjoy such privileges, including a vehicle provided by the state with a siren that he could put on the roof to cut through traffic?
The implication is that Benalla enjoyed some sort of special status, and that Macron's team was somehow reluctant to fire him.
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Benalla has since been fired, for reasons indirectly related to the May Day protest incident. But while those may be serious questions, they seem to fall short of a Watergate-type scandal — a comparison that keeps popping up in French media. Starting with Charles de Gaulle, the father of France's Fifth Republic, French presidents have established parallel police or intelligence staff that would bypass official chains of command to carry out dubious acts.
De Gaulle's allies famously used the Service d'Action Civique SAC , either directly or indirectly — it's still being debated by historians — to conduct operations that were either illegal, or too sensitive to risk confiding to a leak-prone police force. History books are full of allegations that the SAC engaged in some very rough tactics during the troubled years of the Algerian War, including and not limited to, some argue, the assassination of French officials who were inconvenient to the Gaullist power structure.
To this day, the shroud of secrecy around the SAC has never been fully lifted. Unlike De Gaulle, whose SAC was partly composed of former members of the French Resistance some of them reportedly gangsters , Mitterrand used elite gendarme officers to conduct a massive phone-tapping operation whose objective, it was later revealed, was to keep a lid on the existence of a daughter born out of wedlock.
Just about every prominent journalist in the country under Mitterrand was, at one point or another, spied upon in what would become an "affaire d'etat" that went to trial 20 years after the events.
More recently, Nicolas Sarkozy was accused of running his own parallel police operations via a small coterie of well-connected aides. The case dredges up these historical parallels, especially because Macron came to power vowing that he would eliminate sleaze from public office.
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