Le Kiosque 17 May 2013
The headlines at our kiosques were dominated early in the week by a shocking scene at Place du Trocadéro on Monday night, when a celebration for the soccer team Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) turned into an ugly riot. The occasion was their triumph as Champion of France (Ligue 1), and it should have been all smiles. There was even supposed to be a cruise on one of the bateaux mouches that ply the Seine. The team’s owner, Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, from Qatar, had the best-laid plans! But they all went awry. 
The prefect for Paris, charged with keeping order in the city, might have had reservations about holding such a demo in such a place, but apparently he just couldn’t say no to the influential Khelaïfi. PSG supporters do have a reputation for violence. But the scene at Trocadéro attracted a lot of hell raisers who had no real interest in the team. Police seemed unable – or perhaps unwilling – to bring the crowd under control. As smoke grenades and random rocks and bottles flew through the air, hooligans vandalized shops and chased journalists. And when the PSG players finally did arrive to greet the fans they stayed all of … five minutes. 
The question of police effectiveness, or the lack of it, quickly hit the front pages, with many fingers pointing at Interior Minister Manuel Valls. The right-wing opposition quickly invoked its (somewhat distorted) memory of the glorious way then-Interior Minister and later President Nicolas Sarkozy supposedly resolved the big riots of 2005 (which actually went on for more than two weeks, spread across the entire country and forced the government to declare a state of emergency). It didn’t help the image of France, meanwhile, that in Manchester, on the same day, the British crowds celebrated the victory of their soccer team and commemorated the departure of their beloved trainer in a very peaceful way.
Luckily for us, the Cannes Film Festival started Wednesday night. Maybe that will help us forget this disgraceful episode…
 
— Solène Cressant
 
(Photo is of a more placid Place Jacques Copeau on the Boulevard Saint-Germain, where Diderot watches over the kiosque.)

Le Kiosque 17 May 2013

The headlines at our kiosques were dominated early in the week by a shocking scene at Place du Trocadéro on Monday night, when a celebration for the soccer team Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) turned into an ugly riot. The occasion was their triumph as Champion of France (Ligue 1), and it should have been all smiles. There was even supposed to be a cruise on one of the bateaux mouches that ply the Seine. The team’s owner, Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, from Qatar, had the best-laid plans! But they all went awry.

The prefect for Paris, charged with keeping order in the city, might have had reservations about holding such a demo in such a place, but apparently he just couldn’t say no to the influential Khelaïfi. PSG supporters do have a reputation for violence. But the scene at Trocadéro attracted a lot of hell raisers who had no real interest in the team. Police seemed unable – or perhaps unwilling – to bring the crowd under control. As smoke grenades and random rocks and bottles flew through the air, hooligans vandalized shops and chased journalists. And when the PSG players finally did arrive to greet the fans they stayed all of … five minutes.

The question of police effectiveness, or the lack of it, quickly hit the front pages, with many fingers pointing at Interior Minister Manuel Valls. The right-wing opposition quickly invoked its (somewhat distorted) memory of the glorious way then-Interior Minister and later President Nicolas Sarkozy supposedly resolved the big riots of 2005 (which actually went on for more than two weeks, spread across the entire country and forced the government to declare a state of emergency). It didn’t help the image of France, meanwhile, that in Manchester, on the same day, the British crowds celebrated the victory of their soccer team and commemorated the departure of their beloved trainer in a very peaceful way.

Luckily for us, the Cannes Film Festival started Wednesday night. Maybe that will help us forget this disgraceful episode…

 

— Solène Cressant

 

(Photo is of a more placid Place Jacques Copeau on the Boulevard Saint-Germain, where Diderot watches over the kiosque.)

Le Kiosque 2 May 2013
Le Canard Enchainé came back with a splash this week. It reported that during a police search in the apartment of Claude Guéant, the interior minister and right-hand man of ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy, the cops turned up evidence of seemingly suspicious cash payments and the murky sale of some paintings. “Guéant, caught with his hand in the paint can,” Le Canard opined. But Guéant is not the only one to be in trouble with the law! The police search conducted on February 27 grew out of investigations looking at the alleged Libyan financing of Sarkozy’s 2007 presidential campaign and an potential scandal involving French business man Bernard Tapie. The cops discovered records of money in a foreign bank account (this again!) and substantial cash payments to him (which never look good in politics). 
The once-powerful minister launched a counter-offensive by giving seven interviews in a day. He swore to Le Canard Enchainé th money in question has nothing to do with Libya, that it is private. The money from the foreign bank account is allegedly from the sale of paintings by a Dutch painter (Guéant couldn’t seem to remember the name). A “high civil servant” explained to Le Canard Enchainé that it is very common to sell words of art to launder money, although no charges have been brought against Guéant and he adamantly denies any wrongdoing.  Concerning the cash payments, the former minister insists they are from ministerial bonuses handed out in cash.  (Hmmm. Why would that be?) The problem is that this method was supposed to have been abolished in 2002 by then-Prime Minister Lionel Jospin. Another problem, it appears this money was not officially on the books. Finally, Le Canard Enchainé ironizes about Guéant’s good luck, since if he’d been a minister (as the beleaguered M. Cahuzac was in the present government) he would have been compelled to resign in disgrace.
— Solène Cressant
(Photo of the kiosque at Metro Odéon)

Le Kiosque 2 May 2013

Le Canard Enchainé came back with a splash this week. It reported that during a police search in the apartment of Claude Guéant, the interior minister and right-hand man of ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy, the cops turned up evidence of seemingly suspicious cash payments and the murky sale of some paintings. “Guéant, caught with his hand in the paint can,” Le Canard opined. But Guéant is not the only one to be in trouble with the law! The police search conducted on February 27 grew out of investigations looking at the alleged Libyan financing of Sarkozy’s 2007 presidential campaign and an potential scandal involving French business man Bernard Tapie. The cops discovered records of money in a foreign bank account (this again!) and substantial cash payments to him (which never look good in politics). 
The once-powerful minister launched a counter-offensive by giving seven interviews in a day. He swore to Le Canard Enchainé th money in question has nothing to do with Libya, that it is private. The money from the foreign bank account is allegedly from the sale of paintings by a Dutch painter (Guéant couldn’t seem to remember the name). A “high civil servant” explained to Le Canard Enchainé that it is very common to sell words of art to launder money, although no charges have been brought against Guéant and he adamantly denies any wrongdoing.  Concerning the cash payments, the former minister insists they are from ministerial bonuses handed out in cash.  (Hmmm. Why would that be?) The problem is that this method was supposed to have been abolished in 2002 by then-Prime Minister Lionel Jospin. Another problem, it appears this money was not officially on the books. Finally, Le Canard Enchainé ironizes about Guéant’s good luck, since if he’d been a minister (as the beleaguered M. Cahuzac was in the present government) he would have been compelled to resign in disgrace.

— Solène Cressant

(Photo of the kiosque at Metro Odéon)

Kiosque
This week, Le Canard Enchainé reminds us that French President François Hollande, also called « pépère » (grandpa), still has a an abysmal  popularity rating and that the Socialist Party is mired in a deep slump.  In partial legislative elections in Oise (north of Paris) the party came in behind the opposition (UMP) and even Marine Le Pen’s conservative Front National! To make things worse Hollande’s budget minister had to resign after he was accused of having a Swiss bank account … In short, Hollande is in trouble on many sides.

Oh, and then there’s the sniping from the ex-first lady: Carla Bruni-Sarkozy. She is famous as a model – at least, when she was younger- and for the last decade, as a chanteuse. Her songs are supposed to be refined, a little affected…  Well, her new album will come out on April 1, but we already have some excerpts and it now seems she’s a singer with a cause! Albeit one for “les beaux quartiers,” as Le Canard says.   Some of her songs are sort or manifesto for “Raymond,” the nickname she used for her Sarko. (Raymond? Where’d that come from?): “My Raymond’s got the talent to seduce the whole bunch.” She also makes fun of a certain “penguin,” who appears to be Hollande himself (and who dared to push her lover out of the Elysée): “Hey penguin, if one day we pass each other, I’ll teach you, penguin, I’ll teach you to kiss a lady’s hand.” This seems to be a reference to the day of the transfer of power between Sarkozy and Hollande. But she insisted to L’Express she doesn’t have anyone particular in mind in this ditty, as the controversy strengthens…

No doubt Sarkozy was pleased with the song, but now he has other music to face. On Friday the papers at our kiosque led with the story he’s under formal investigation in connection with a finance scandal dating back to 2007. He does have that talent to seduce …
— Solène Cressant
 (Photo of kiosk on the Champs Élysées on Thursday with the Arc de Triomphe in the background)

Kiosque

This week, Le Canard Enchainé reminds us that French President François Hollande, also called « pépère » (grandpa), still has a an abysmal  popularity rating and that the Socialist Party is mired in a deep slump.  In partial legislative elections in Oise (north of Paris) the party came in behind the opposition (UMP) and even Marine Le Pen’s conservative Front National! To make things worse Hollande’s budget minister had to resign after he was accused of having a Swiss bank account … In short, Hollande is in trouble on many sides.

Oh, and then there’s the sniping from the ex-first lady: Carla Bruni-Sarkozy. She is famous as a model – at least, when she was younger- and for the last decade, as a chanteuse. Her songs are supposed to be refined, a little affected…  Well, her new album will come out on April 1, but we already have some excerpts and it now seems she’s a singer with a cause! Albeit one for “les beaux quartiers,” as Le Canard says.   Some of her songs are sort or manifesto for “Raymond,” the nickname she used for her Sarko. (Raymond? Where’d that come from?): “My Raymond’s got the talent to seduce the whole bunch.” She also makes fun of a certain “penguin,” who appears to be Hollande himself (and who dared to push her lover out of the Elysée): “Hey penguin, if one day we pass each other, I’ll teach you, penguin, I’ll teach you to kiss a lady’s hand.” This seems to be a reference to the day of the transfer of power between Sarkozy and Hollande. But she insisted to L’Express she doesn’t have anyone particular in mind in this ditty, as the controversy strengthens…

No doubt Sarkozy was pleased with the song, but now he has other music to face. On Friday the papers at our kiosque led with the story he’s under formal investigation in connection with a finance scandal dating back to 2007. He does have that talent to seduce …

— Solène Cressant

 (Photo of kiosk on the Champs Élysées on Thursday with the Arc de Triomphe in the background)

Kiosque:
There were nothing but grey skies over the kiosque at the Jules Joffrin métro stop across from the Mairie in the 18th earlier today.  The cover of GQ Magazine, featuring retired French soccer star Zinédine Zidane, looked back at the glory days of the French football team, known in France simply as Les Bleus. But the lead headline of Le Parisien wondered if the current team should be penalized for their poor behavior during the Euro Cup 2012 quarter-finals.  It is still to be determined whether the whole team will be punished, but it is nearly certain that Samir Nasri, who normally plays for Manchester City, will face retribution for the nasty comments he made to a journalist followingthe match last Saturday when Le Bleus lost to Spain.

The main headlines of Le Figaro focused on the intersection of top French political officials with their worldly counterparts.  On the one hand, the daily paper featured the arrival of Burmese political activist and newly elected parliamentary representative, Aung San Suu Kyi, for a three-day visit to the French capital.  Le Figaro also made reference to the upcoming European Summit to discuss the financial crisis by announcing a working dinner scheduled for this evening between French President Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.  Apparently the German leader had already shown her cards by announcing late Tuesday that she will neither support the pooling of debt nor the creation of Eurobonds for “as long as she lives.”  Whether she sticks to her guns or is persuaded by President Hollande and others to relax her position will be revealed in the coming days.

Domestic issues were the order of the day at Libération where the main headline imagines French police asking themselves what  Manuel Valls, the new Minister of the Interior, will do now that he is in charge.  During his campaign, President Hollande called for a new set of rules to improve the relationship between the police and French citizens, which had degraded during the Sarkozy years, but that puts Valls in the awkward position of having to enact reform while also keeping the police force relatively appeased.  So far the French police seem to be cautiously optimistic about Valls’s pronouncements.
— Courtney Delaunay (uneamericaine.tumblr.com)

Kiosque:

There were nothing but grey skies over the kiosque at the Jules Joffrin métro stop across from the Mairie in the 18th earlier today.  The cover of GQ Magazine, featuring retired French soccer star Zinédine Zidane, looked back at the glory days of the French football team, known in France simply as Les Bleus. But the lead headline of Le Parisien wondered if the current team should be penalized for their poor behavior during the Euro Cup 2012 quarter-finals.  It is still to be determined whether the whole team will be punished, but it is nearly certain that Samir Nasri, who normally plays for Manchester City, will face retribution for the nasty comments he made to a journalist followingthe match last Saturday when Le Bleus lost to Spain.

The main headlines of Le Figaro focused on the intersection of top French political officials with their worldly counterparts.  On the one hand, the daily paper featured the arrival of Burmese political activist and newly elected parliamentary representative, Aung San Suu Kyi, for a three-day visit to the French capital.  Le Figaro also made reference to the upcoming European Summit to discuss the financial crisis by announcing a working dinner scheduled for this evening between French President Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.  Apparently the German leader had already shown her cards by announcing late Tuesday that she will neither support the pooling of debt nor the creation of Eurobonds for “as long as she lives.”  Whether she sticks to her guns or is persuaded by President Hollande and others to relax her position will be revealed in the coming days.

Domestic issues were the order of the day at Libération where the main headline imagines French police asking themselves what  Manuel Valls, the new Minister of the Interior, will do now that he is in charge.  During his campaign, President Hollande called for a new set of rules to improve the relationship between the police and French citizens, which had degraded during the Sarkozy years, but that puts Valls in the awkward position of having to enact reform while also keeping the police force relatively appeased.  So far the French police seem to be cautiously optimistic about Valls’s pronouncements.

— Courtney Delaunay (uneamericaine.tumblr.com)

Jubilation at Place de la Bastille, Paris, France: Celebrating the election of François Hollande and the defeat of President Nicolas Sarkozy the night of May 6, 2012.
Tracy McNicoll took this and more amazing shots you can see on Rues de Paradis.
For her article on the elections and Hollande as the anti-Sarkozy, see The Daily Beast.
For links to more coverage from Newsweek & The Daily Beast visit The Shadowland Journal.

Jubilation at Place de la Bastille, Paris, France: Celebrating the election of François Hollande and the defeat of President Nicolas Sarkozy the night of May 6, 2012.

Tracy McNicoll took this and more amazing shots you can see on Rues de Paradis.

For her article on the elections and Hollande as the anti-Sarkozy, see The Daily Beast.

For links to more coverage from Newsweek & The Daily Beast visit The Shadowland Journal.