France, popular revolt (Yellow Vests) What's going on?


Probably the fact that the peaceful protests are completely ignored, for those who only view one source, what are they to think?



Hence the two contrasting sources in my post.
If I were a French citizen I’d be at least as concerned at the violence of the riot police being completely ignored by the French state media as by the peaceful protest being completely ignored by the Russian state media.


Given it’s RT, you can’t even be confident that it’s France, this year, or even footage of real people (as opposed to video games). That is my objection to RT, that it is often enough entirely made up. … ssia-today

You may quote an arm of the Russian state if you like, don’t expect anyone to treat it like a source, no matter what is covered on it. Oh, and don’t expect to be taken seriously as you tie yourself in knots defending Russian foreign policy.


For the record I was not saying anything about Russian foreign policy so I don’t know what that comment is about.

Can you tell me whether you believe the TV station built replicas of the Arc de Triomphe and other recognisable Parisan buildings in Russia in order to film fake riots at them or that the footage was faked in some other way?


For what record?
You’re quoting RT, an instrument of Russian foreign policy. Whatever is presented on RT is presented in such a way that it benefits Russia and Russia only. They are past calling their propaganda rags “Truth”, but the content is unchanged.


I think the life and crimes Michael Adebolajo shows that when it comes to intelligence agencies anything is possible. He just happened to get picked up in Kenya (what luck !) then apparently repeatedly courted to be an informer, then cracks and goes on a rampage in Woolich (to prove fealty?). It’s entirely probable that the Kenyan adventure was devised by MI5 from its inception. And consequently that his entire jihadi life was being directed by the British state as the puppeteer.

There are definitely ways to cause an attack to occur. Without directing it. Particularly a lone wolf.

The point is that a lot of jihadis (and dissident republicans) think they’re plotting against the State. But they’re actually being managed by that State. It’s Counter Insurgency 101.


For the record of this conversation.
You have asserted that I have discredited myself personally by presenting a contrast between French and Russian state coverage of recent riots and accused me of ‘tying myself in knots defending Russian foreign policy’. I refute that and claim that I have done no such thing.

You decline to answer my question on what your beliefs are as to how the 90 seconds of footage I linked to is fabricated.

Is it plausible that the Russian state has an interest in highlighting the violence of recent protests? Sure.
Do states commonly fabricate information for political ends? Yes, all the time.
It is also plausible that the French state has an interest in downplaying the violence of the protests and particularly the violence of the riot police (which are employed by the French state) in these confrontations? Yes.
Have you presented any arguments that indicate that the footage I linked to was fabricated? No, none.

So how is it not a valid contribution to this thread in reply to a post commenting on the level of violence at the protests to point out that different state media organisations present differing levels of violence in their coverage of the riots?


Lads it’s getting serious now.


A bit weird how the Russia-hating often ends up in gay insults…


What’s weirdest of all is Russian state gay bashing on the pretext that being Gay is intrinsically “Russia-hating”.


Quite simply their line doesn’t tally with the interests of those around here who tend to be comfortable and who wish to remain that way. The yellow vest movement is challenging what has been perceived as the natural order for the past half century odd within the western world ie not just Macron but the ideology that underpins the hodge pudge that has come to be known as neoliberalism. Not only that but they are also freezing out the shadow establishment opposition that itself has very little interest in being anything other than a formulaic ying to the establishments yang.

Of course, as Irish people you would think some would have a more nuanced view of the historical actions of the British state apparatus, but of course many ‘Irish’ people are possessed of certain prejudices when it comes to the former colonial masters…and persist in viewing much of what passes for discourse within Irish society through that same prism.

A Former British Anbassador gone somewhat rogue has the following to say this week … … craft/amp/

#172 … -uprising/


To paraphrase a CRS police union rep on TV a few years - you always see video of one of our guys hitting someone with a baton, you never see video of the guys (rioters) getting hit throwing pavement slabs or firing catapult ball bearings just before.

Basically, in almost all cases the guys getting the shit beaten out of them by the riot police have already used violence against the police. Thats the rules of the game. Occasionally “innocents” get caught up in the melee but in most cases they are idiots who are screaming - we have a right to protest here. Which they dont. Once the police declared a street a controlled zone you have zero legal right to be there and must move. Its the law. And everyone knows it.

The first weekend of serious riots in Paris was a bit of a ballsup up by the police, really the ministry and the prefect, but after that the GM in central Paris have run a text book operation. Control defined spaces. Break up large groups if too many casseurs are forming. Use plain cloths snatch squads (the guys with red armbands) to grab ring leaders. And when people start throwing missiles, especially using catapults, then its baton rounds and baton charges. The tear gas has the same role as dry ice at a stage show. Its there mainly to add mood.

The video you saw on news channels especially the Russian propaganda ones like RT are meaningless if just 15/30 sec segments. Dont mean anything. The longer ones are just someones peephole view of a confusing situation. Again, basically means nothing. Some of the high vantage point video feeds from the French news channels were interesting in that you could see how the riot police were acting and reacting to a fluid situation. Thats about all the video of a riot is worth. Not a lot.

So, no, there was no unusual police “brutality” during the gilet jaune demos. Basically the vast majority of those demonstrating were law abiding and were left unmolested by the police. The hard core rioters of the first week or two were either picked up or picked off at train stations in later weeks. So pretty much all violence the last two week was by casseurs who have zero to do with the gilet and just are the usual opportunistic street violence thugs.

Yesterday was pretty quiet in Paris but fairly active in the rest of the county. Roads shut down in large parts of the country. At least in the bits were the weather was not atrocious and the roads were not already shut down by large numbers of road accidents.

This particular political play is far from over. Both sides are still coming to terms with what just happened. So a bit of shadow boxing at the moment. But the gilet jaune won round one. And Macron most definitely lost. Which is always the way when the Paris elites try to take on France Profonde. Paris always looses.


The CRS union rep has a valid point and is in a good position of knowledge to make his side of the argument.
The union rep of the organisation that is being accused of the brutality cannot be taken as the ultimate arbiter of the truth in these situations though. Very few people would take the assessment of officials representing Mubarak’s or Assad’s or Yanukovych’s or Chavez’s security services as the final word on whether the actions of the services that they represent meet the definition of brutality or not.
In most cases he could be quite correct but if it was the case that there were incidents of brutality the CRS union rep would not be where I would expect this admission to come from.

In reference to the recent protests there have been 8 fatalities (according to Wikipedia) including an elderly woman who died after being hit in the face with a tear gas canister.
BBC News: An 80-year-old woman has died after being hit by a tear gas canister at her window during Saturday’s fuel protests in the French city of Marseille.

AP has also been releasing footage:
8 December: Paris police used tear gas and water cannons
30th November: Teargas and water cannon used on “yellow jackets”
17 November: Police deploy tear gas as hundreds protest fuel tax in Paris

Whatever our political allegiances or beliefs it is useful to have footage and reporting available from media organisations with varying agendas in order to be able to make our own minds up as to what the realities of these situations are.
If foreign news media (even if your opinion is that it is propagandistic and hostile) had been covering Civil Rights demonstrations in Derry in 1972 for example it could only have made it more difficult for Widgery to execute his “shameless cover-up” and indemnify the British government from responsibility for its actions for half a life-time.


An incident of propagandistic manipulation of visual imagery related to the ‘gilets jaune’ alleged to have occurred yesterday.

This video seems to be the clearest description of the incident to a non French speaker like me


Coverage of that in Le Monde … 32693.html


Fr3 is the public regional channel. It’s what you watch if you want to see some coverage of the local news. A bit like ZDF in Germany or the BBC regional news. Not exactly the first place I look for national news. The story seem to be that the news telecast director decided to use a cleaned up news service still as the set story background graphic, a green screen drop in. Given that the station is state owned and financed and the organizational constraints the producer and news director are working within cleaning up the image looks pretty reasonable to me. TV stations do this all the time with regards where they cut video segments, which still they use for the story lead in. etc. If you have watched much raw video feeds, news story video from the news services, etc, and then seen the final edited segment for transmission you would see that the raw input always is cut / selected / modified to fit the story line.

Given that, how the news business works, the only people I dont trust are the people who claim to be “objective”. They never are. So I prefer it when the news organization is up and front and blatant about their political opinions and biases. For start they are the only honest source of news. Which is why I read Le Figaro and Liberation. The Torygraph and the Grauniad of France. None of this pretense and cant of J School style “unbiased news”. Which is always from a soft left political point of view anyway.


another protest in Dublin yesterday


Maybe those at the front could show solidarity with the Belgian gilet jaunes, who are taxed to pay for Strokestown and any other KBC write offs arising from business bankruptcy.

Just to connect the dots like.


Banks are borrowers too. … _Recession