The Wake of Tragedy: Considering Charlie Hebdo Weeks Later

PARIS — It is always hard to write in the midst of dramatic events. In the days following the attack on Charlie Hebdo, it felt impossible to report on the tragic attack or the ensuing manhunt for gunmen Chérif and Saïd Kouachi and Amedy Coulibaly. Though I did not feel particularly affected by the attack, […]

What the Cabinet Shake-Up Reveals about the Flaws of the Fifth Republic

On Monday, August 25, the cabinet of Prime Minister Manuel Valls was dismissed and a new cabinet was formed the following day. Valls has been Prime Minister for less than six months. The cabinet dismissal occurred in reaction to the public opposition of Economy Minister Arnaud Montebourg and other ministers to the economic policies of President […]

The War of the Roses: Cabinet Shake Up Reflects Dissension Amid Socialists

“Should we now apologize for being on the left?” asked now former Minister of Culture Aurélie Filippetti. Those words could aptly describe the political earthquake that shook the French government on Tuesday, when French Prime Minister Manuel Valls proclaimed a new list of cabinet ministers. Valls was designated PM just six months ago following the socialist […]

Attack on Roma Teen in Paris Suburb Begs Bigger Questions

Darius, a sixteen-year-old Roma teenager was found nearly beaten to death in a shopping cart on Friday in a housing project outside of Paris. This story has made it into the headlines of the major French and some international press outlets. Called a “lynching” by Le Monde, the event has sparked the ongoing discussion about […]

EC Estimates France Will Miss Deficit Target in 2015

  The European Commission doubts that France will be able to cut its deficit to the target level – 3% of its GDP – in 2015, despite the austerity measures announced by the new government led by Manuel Valls. Last Monday, the European Commission released its latest economic forecast for France, estimating a 3.4% public […]

How is Manuel Valls Doing?

  New Prime Minister Manuel Valls. Photo: Jackolan1 for Wikimedia Commons France’s new prime minister, Manuel Valls, was appointed to his position last month by President François Hollande, as one of many attempts to revive that man’s flagging popularity, along with that of his Parti Socialiste (PS).  A month into his tenure, things seem to be going well for a […]

Disaster for PS in Municipal Elections

LILLE – Even Limoges, the city that has elected Socialist mayors since 1911, did not choose the Parti Socialiste (PS) in last night’s municipal elections. The second round of the municipal elections marked the most severe defeat the PS has ever experienced in the municipal elections. The PS, which has patiently constructed a strong network of mayors […]

Interior Minister Manuel Valls Replaces Ayrault as Prime Minister

PARIS – It was the election night that the Parti Socialiste feared, and hoped would not become a reality — but the resignation of Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and his French government make the damage done on Sunday night quite clear. Ayrault resigned Monday afternoon after the PS won only 40.57 percent of the total vote in France, while the UMP scored nearly […]

Paris Police Facing Scrutiny over Doctored Crime Numbers

Parisian police have been systematically underreporting crime for years, according to a government audit. The scheme was apparently meant to maintain the French capital’s safe, tourist-friendly image, and to give the impression that government anti-crime policies were working. Municipal authorities in Paris apparently started purposefully downplaying crime a decade ago. However, the cover-up hit new […]

Valls Boasts Progress in Immigration

Plagued with immigration issues since becoming Minister of the Interior in 2012, Manuel Valls provided a comprehensive review of immigration statistics and reform to the public on Jan. 31, at a press conference at the Place Beauvau, in Paris. Figures released by the French government show a slight decrease in the number of illegal aliens […]