President Obama called French president Nicolas Sarkozy to say thanks and good bye, the White House press secretary announced.Read more
He was never supposed to be president. For years, rather charmingly, François Hollande didn’t even seem to care, unlike, say, the single-minded Nicolas Sarkozy, who had thought of little else since his early 20s.
If you understood how French president Nicolas Sarkozy found himself holed up in a barroom in Bayonne last Thursday afternoon, it would take you a long way towards figuring out what is going to happen in France’s two-round presidential election, coming up in April and May. Sarkozy, who heads France’s conservative UMP party, was making a surprise visit to the Basque country, along the border with Spain. The Socialists, who have not held the presidency since 1995, got wind of his visit. Together with local Basque separatists, they succeeded in blocking the center of Bayonne.Read more
French President Nicolas Sarkozy reportedly told US President Barack Obama that he could not "stand" Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and that he thinks the Israeli premier "is a liar."
According to a Monday report in the French website "Arret sur Images," after facing reporters for a G20 press conference on Thursday, the two presidents retired to a private room, to further discuss the matters of the day.Read more
As Maine is New England’s Texas, France is Europe’s U.S.A. It’s big. It’s ornery. Like us, the French are notably more inward-looking than Europe’s other populous, geographically big, and prosperous states. Despite France’s co-leadership of the European unification project, a new German Marshall Fund study shows the French have the least confidence in EU leadership, are more anti-EU than any other EU country except the U.K., and have the largest percentage who think the euro has been bad for their economy—a solid 60 percent majority. France may symbolize cosmopolitanism to the world but doesn’t itself partake. Over 92 percent of the French never leave the hexagone during their long vacations.Read more
Both the so-called Republican Forces loyal to the new Ivoirian president Alassane Ouattara and French officials have been at great pains to insist that deposed president Laurent Gbagbo was captured by Ouattara’s troops and not by French troops. This is not what was initially reported. But, in any case, as an article in Tuesday’s edition of the French daily Libération puts it, “nobody is fooled.”Read more
Military action against the Moammar Gadhafi regime could begin in the coming hours, a French government spokesman said on Friday, hours after the U.N. Security Council authorized the use of force to protect besieged civilians in Libya.
Speaking in an interview with RTL radio, Francois Baroin said France plans to participate in what he described as "swift" efforts.Read more
A disheartening report from Josh Rogin on the G8 foreign ministers' meeting on Libya. "Inside the foreign ministers' meeting, a loud and contentious debate erupted about whether to move forward with stronger action to halt Col. Muammar al-Qaddafi's campaign against the Libyan rebels and the violence being perpetrated against civilians," Rogin reports.Read more
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