Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Erdogan to rid Turkish institutions of ‘separatist cancer’ after coup attempt

Read more

ENCORE!

The best of summer music festivals in France

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Going for gold: French athletes train for Rio Olympics

Read more

#TECH 24

Digital beauty

Read more

FOCUS

Women doctors in Pakistan challenge the status quo

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Trump hopes to reset America's trade relations

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Donald Trump's speech was just another scam'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Cazeneuve at the heart of Nice security controversy

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

South Africa: Prosecutors seek longer sentence for Oscar Pistorius

Read more

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

IN THE PAPERS

IN THE PAPERS

Latest update : 2010-02-09

French debate on national identity was a “fiasco”

Libération’s editorial this morning is entitled “rabbit fart” – not exactly a flattering summing up of Immigration Minister Eric Besson’s three-month debate on French national identity. Le Figaro is also critical saying that the Government’s proposals at the conclusion of the national identity debate “fall far short of expectations”.

Libération calls the national identity debate “a fiasco” and Eric Besson is the man responsible for it. Yesterday, French Prime Minister François Fillon tried to “bury” the initiative at a government conference marking the end of a three-month public debate on what it means to be French.
 
The paper’s editorial likens the debate to a “rabbit fart”! It was meant to ask some profound questions but the debate on French national identity has ended with “tails between legs and the sound of a broken trumpet,” the paper says.
 
When the debate began last November, a large conference was promised at its end with varied proposals and a Presidential speech. “Instead there was a low-key and flat inter-ministerial council with three dull proposals.”
 
And the sentence of the day is: “A display of grandiose national pomp has been transformed into a Bessonian rabbit fart.”
 
The paper goes on to say that the Immigration Minister “was betrayed by right-wing elements in the UMP who revealed the real intention of this debate through a series of gaffes…This debate was unfairly putting Islam in the dock and it was disastrous.”
 
However, the paper notes, the debate’s spectacular failure is paradoxically “a source of comfort” because “its latent xenophobia was rejected by the good sense of the public”
 
“For once,” Libération concludes, “those who had been designated as ‘foreigners’ won’t be seen as the scapegoats for current difficulties.”
 
 
Other articles in today’s French papers:
 
Le Figaro: Fillon tries to defuse the debate
 
 
Aujourd’hui en France / Le Parisien: Interview with Socialist Party deputy leader Harlem Désir on the national identity debate
 
Aujourd’hui en France / Le Parisien: Bernard Henry-Lévy’s big gaffe
 

By James CREEDON

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2016-07-22 Donald Trump

'Donald Trump's speech was just another scam'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Fri. 22.07.16: Stateside, papers react to Donald Trump's much-anticipated speech to the nation at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. He...

Read more

2016-07-22 Truck attack in Nice

Cazeneuve at the heart of Nice security controversy

FRENCH PAPERS - Fri. 22.07.16: Papers are continuing to react to the aftermath of last week’s Nice attack. Yesterday, left-leaning daily Libération alleged numerous security...

Read more

2016-07-21 Donald Trump

Can 'generic Republican' Mike Pence save the party?

IN THE INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thursday, July 21: The US reacts to Mike Pence's nomination as Donald Trump's running mate. Vox calls him a replacement-level Republican whose...

Read more

2016-07-21 François Hollande

Nice attack: Government's 'security breaches and lies'

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Thursday, 21 July: Libération leads with explosive allegations that the government lied about the level of security present on the Promenade des Anglais on...

Read more

2016-07-20 Germany

Where is the boundary between a lunatic's rampage and a terrorist attack?

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Weds. 20.07.16: German papers react to the Monday night axe attack carried out on a train by a 17-year-old Afghan refugee. Also, Turkish President Recep...

Read more