Is France Next?

Source: IPG Journal, June 27

Summary:

Many people in Germany are worried about the situation in France. The country is torn by unusually intense and often violent social conflicts, strikes and internal divisions. Young people and intellectuals meet at night on the Place de la République during the nuits debout to talk about these things. The socialist government has grave difficulty coping with this situation and is unable to introduce the necessary reforms. The Left is divided. France is burned out.

Still, it is now essential that France and Germany, which has its own problems, work together. Such cooperation faces a profound difficulty.

Since the French Revolution, France and Germany have dealt with fundamentals in different ways. In France, fights were carried out openly, on the streets. In Germany, conflicts were “internalized,” and, following its Protestant tradition, citizens blamed their individual consciences for whatever was wrong.

Both sides must now recognize this basic discrepancy. The tension between the two approaches will be at the heart of the discussions which will now be necessary. Everyone will have to think afresh about the meaning of freedom and the nature of European institutions.

Marine Le Pen is watching.

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