More at: https://www.news24.com/World/News/five-consequences-of-frances-yellow-vest-protests-20181206Anti-government protesters wearing florescent yellow jackets have roiled France for nearly three weeks and shaken the government of President Emmanuel Macron. Here are five key consequences of the crisis:
1. A weakened president at home
Since his election in May 2017, Macron, a former investment banker, had styled himself as a resolute and visionary president in the style of famed former French leaders such as Charles de Gaulle.
His detractors saw in him the authoritarian instincts of a older historical figure: Napoleon Bonaparte, the 19th-century general who named himself emperor of the French.
Having abandoned planned fuel tax hikes on Wednesday, a week after ruling this out in a televised address to the nation, Macron has seen his authority and image take a severe blow.
"The Bonapartist method which was successful at the beginning to launch his reforms is not suitable any more," Philippe Moreau-Chevrolet, an expert in political communication, told AFP this week.
The protests also come as his government is preparing to push through other contested changes, including a hugely sensitive shake-up of the pension system which is likely to spark fierce resistance.
With his political opponents emboldened and protesters sensing weakness, will Macron be able to deliver any more of his vision of a France that is more business-friendly and less dependent on state spending?
2. Angry France is back
The sight of burning barricades in the street, mass demonstrations and a government in a retreat is a wearily familiar one for observers of France.
But for foreign investors and his fans abroad, Macron had provided hope that France might finally put an end to decades of high unemployment and low growth.
The 40-year-old spent much of his first 18 months in office wooing foreign companies, at one point inviting global CEOs to the Versailles Palace for dinner, where he wheeled out his catchphrase: "France is back!"
Overhauls of labour laws and the state railways, as well as tax cuts for businesses and high-earners, passed with relative ease.
But it is angry street protests that are back, not the image of a "start-up nation" wedded to innovation and technology that Macron envisioned.
"The attractiveness of France has taken a real hit," Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire conceded on Monday.
3. Nationalists rejoice
The election of Macron, a pro-EU centrist, bucked the electoral trends around Europe which have seen gains for rightwing populism – something Macron has likened to "leprosy".
Since taking office, he has positioned himself within the EU and on the international stage as a leading voice for centrist politics and multilateralism.
More at: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-protests/paris-in-lockdown-as-france-braces-for-new-anti-macron-riots-idUSKBN1O700HPARIS (Reuters) - Paris was in lockdown early on Saturday with thousands of French security forces braced to meet renewed rioting by “yellow vest” protesters in the capital and other cities in a fourth weekend of confrontation over living costs.
The Eiffel Tower and other tourist landmarks were shut, shops were boarded up to avoid looting and street furniture removed to avoid metal bars from being used as projectiles.
About 89,000 police were deployed across the country.
Of these, about 8,000 were deployed in Paris to avoid a repeat of last Saturday’s mayhem when rioters torched cars and looted shops off the famed Champs Elysees boulevard, and defaced the Arc de Triomphe with graffiti directed at President Emmanuel Macron.
Protesters, using social media, have billed the weekend as “Act IV” in a dramatic challenge to Macron and his policies.
The protests, named after the high-visibility safety jackets French motorists have to keep in their cars, erupted in November over the squeeze on household budgets caused by fuel taxes.
Demonstrations have since swelled into a broad, sometimes-violent rebellion against Macron - a challenge made more difficult to handle since the movement has no formal leader.
Authorities say the protests have been hijacked by far-right and anarchist elements bent on violence and stirring up social unrest in a direct affront to Macron and the security forces.
More at: https://www.france24.com/en/20181208-paris-lockdown-france-yellow-vests-gilets-jaunes-anti-macron-riots-protestsParis police detained nearly 300 people Saturday ahead of fresh anti-government "yellow vest" protests which authorities fear could turn violent for a third weekend in a row.
Clad in their luminous road safety jackets, dozens of demonstrators -- who accuse President Emmanuel Macron of only looking out for the rich -- gathered at dawn on the Champs-Elysees, the scene last Saturday of the worst rioting in Paris for decades.
"We had to come to Paris to be heard," said protester Herve Benoit, arriving with three friends from the Dordogne in western France.
He called on the government to boost people's spending power and increase taxes on the wealthiest.
By 8.40 am (0740 GMT) police had already detained 278 people.
Some 8,000 police were deployed, carrying out checks on people arriving at train stations and at protest hotspots such as the Champs-Elysees and Bastille monument.
A source close to the operation told AFP that at least 34 people were arrested for carrying masks, hammers, slingshots and rocks that could be used to attack police.
More at: http://fortune.com/2018/12/15/french-yellow-vest-protests/Demonstrations across France by the “Yellow Vests” movement drew around half the number of last week’s protesters, suggesting that Emmanuel Macron’s concessions have dented the campaign’s momentum.
While protesters still called for the president to step down for a fifth Saturday in a row, placards calling for a higher minimum wage were replaced by those seeking a citizens’ referendum.
Some 66,000 people had taken part by 6 p.m., down from the 126,000 at the same time last Saturday, Agence-France Presse reported, citing estimates from the Interior Ministry. The ministry counted about 4,000 protesters on a cold and rainy day in Paris, down from 10,000 a week earlier.
“The Yellow Vests movement is in its concluding phase,” former President Francois Hollande told reporters, adding that the fact that Macron had given in to some demands showed that the movement was “useful,” because it resulted in “significant advances” for part of the population.
People across France have been donning high-visibility vests for more than a month to express a range of grievances and demands, ranging from lower taxes and higher wages to better public services.
Last week, the protests in Paris saw looting, torched cars and damage to shops, restaurants and property. Macron has scrambled to limit the economic damage caused by the protests and blockades, and on Monday announced a package to boost the minimum wage, scrap taxes on overtime and raise pensions.
The most important fight that the French won was the battle of Yorktown, without which the United States would not exist today.....Oui, sacrebleu!
Besides, when the French get off their asses for anything and/or stand up to something instead of surrendering their homeland it is definitely newsworthy.
Dude. it's France! Long history of violent strikes. Just be blessed it hasn't got to 1968 levels...so these idiots were blocking the road all around Aix en Provence and Marseilles last weekend. I was walking outside with a friend when we randomly got teargassed. While the fuel tax is a legitimacy cause for strike, there are some elements in this movement who are just therefore the sake of burning cars and causing mayhem. Not a single striker has been able to tell me what exactly they want, except that the government isn't listening to them. This movement is running into the same problem as occupy wall street where extremists are pushing in their agenda, because the movement had no agenda to begin with.
Pretty every violent protest.so these idiots were blocking the road all around Aix en Provence and Marseilles last weekend. I was walking outside with a friend when we randomly got teargassed. While the fuel tax is a legitimacy cause for strike, there are some elements in this movement who are just therefore the sake of burning cars and causing mayhem. Not a single striker has been able to tell me what exactly they want, except that the government isn't listening to them. This movement is running into the same problem as occupy wall street where extremists are pushing in their agenda, because the movement had no agenda to begin with.
More at: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-46788751French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has announced plans to punish people who hold unsanctioned protests after seven weeks of anti-government unrest.
His government wants to draft new legislation that will ban troublemakers from protests and clamp down on the wearing of masks at demonstrations.
He said 80,000 members of the security forces would be deployed for the next expected wave of protests.
Protesters smashed down the gates to a government office this weekend.
In other chaotic scenes in Paris, demonstrators fought riot police, and cars and motorbikes were burnt.
Protests against fuel tax erupted on 17 November when people across France donned high-visibility vests, giving them their nickname the "gilets jaunes" ("yellow vests"), and went out to disrupt traffic.
Sorry to hear. By a local or an immigrant?Colleague of mine and her son got mugged in Paris in December.
It has more to do about the underlying reason for the rise in the petrol price, which was more of a green tax. And the fact that the elite Lefties are pushing agendas that suit their narrative, and not of that of the working class.Well at least they've started using more correct terminology like "anti-Macron", this was never about fuel price ...
I am of two minds. We have so many protests, that they are just part of our background noise now. And, not sure if you were around, but I was part of a group that arranged many anti-Telkom protests a long time ago. Protests, sit ins, interviews, etc. The amount of people that hated Telkom and were seriously angry was through the roof, yet when it was time to do something, the response was cold. People like to complain, especially whites, and then do nothing (or just leave the country).Yet the French can put a proper protest together and we cannot.
More at : https://www.rt.com/news/451120-yellow-vest-protest-paris/Several luxury sports car owners are counting the cost of Saturday’s chaotic Yellow Vest protests in Paris after their pricey vehicles were targeted and torched by angry demonstrators.
Video taken by eyewitnesses at the march show two Porches and a Mercedes were set on fire, and at least one Ferrari was smashed and defaced in the violent demonstrations.
More at : https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6685729/Yellow-Vest-violence-erupts-streets-Paris-THIRTEENTH-weekend-row.htmlViolence broke out on the streets of Paris today as anti riot police confronted a mass of French yellow vest protesters on the 13th consecutive weekend of demonstrations.