“The fight against the extreme right has become the lowest common denominator of the left”

FIGAROVOX / INTERVIEW – A march organized by political lefts, unions and associations “against far-right ideas” was held on Saturday. According to David Desgouilles, this rhetoric borrowed from SOS Racisme has had its day.

David Desgouilles is a columnist for Marianne. He published Skid (ed. du Rocher, 2017) and Their lost wars, (ed. du Rocher, 2019).


FIGAROVOX. – A “march of freedoms” took place this Saturday against “the ideas of the extreme right”. Do you think that this fight is necessary and a priority today in France?

David DESGOUILLES. – Praised be the organizers of this walk which, like Mac Fly (Marty, played by Michael J. Fox, not Carlito’s boyfriend), plunged us for a Saturday into the heart of the 80s! The only thing missing was the organization of a concert with Patrick Bruel at the end of the event. I myself was in high school at the time, which is to say if I appreciate the bath of youth.

Let’s stop the irony. A “march of freedoms”, who can oppose it, at a time when an unfair curfew is maintained while the incidence rate of the virus has fallen below 50/100000 inhabitants? Who can oppose a “march of freedoms” when a young woman, Mila, is threatened with death for having justly defended her right to freedom of expression? Unfortunately, it was not against these real attacks on freedoms that we were marching on Saturday but against “ideas”.

The fight against the far right has become the lowest common denominator of the left, which Manuel Valls had declared irreconcilable, but whose real problem is not disunity, but great weakness. Doubtless the left should meditate on the latter. This would perhaps allow him not to repeat this kind of walk which now the vast majority of people do not care about, and finally raise an eyebrow only when they learn that Jean-Luc Mélenchon was made floury there by one of his voters disappointed in 2017.

What surprises is the persistence of Jean-Luc Mélenchon to rely on Éric Coquerel in terms of political strategy.

David Desgouilles

Is this a “counter-fire” of rebellious France, as declared the vice-president of the National Rally, Jordan Bardella?

No doubt there was a part of backfire in the initiative, after the words of Jean-Luc Mélenchon who flirted with the conspiracy theory. Admittedly, the Youtubeur Papacito had not shown extraordinary finesse in his video. But that at least allowed the head of La France Insoumise to launch a diversion, while many of his friends were rowing on the television sets to explain his hallucinating remarks.

But other leftist organizations were not affected by this story. The fact that they thus associated themselves with LFI only comes from wanting to replay “F as fascist N as Nazi”, as if that could still have the effectiveness of SOS Racisme at the time when Julien Dray was in the maneuver, whereas the latter is now agonizing insults because he has the audacity to debate on the set of Cnews.

This march, organized by Eric Coquerel, close to Jean-Luc Mélenchon, does it directly compete with another unitary initiative, more oriented towards 2022, the meeting of the left at the call of Yannick Jadot?

Perhaps this was one of the hidden motives for the initiative. But all this does not really matter, since Mélenchon will not support Jadot any more than the other way around. What surprises, however, is the persistence of Jean-Luc Mélenchon to rely on Eric Coquerel in terms of political strategy. It has been three years since today that he pushed out of LFI authentic Republicans like Henri Pena-Ruiz, Georges Kuzmanovic or François Cocq. It has been three years since he gave in to the blackmail of his party’s new spur, Taha Bouhafs. Three years that all the people who criticize this drift have been sent back to the extreme right. This is what La France Insoumise has become. If still the cynical electoral calculation was effective. On the contrary ! Jean-Luc Mélenchon will never completely satisfy Taha Bouhafs and his friends, and like the Titanic, he continues to frighten more and more voters, to the point that a hypothetical second round with Marine Le Pen now places him at 40% against 60. There is no satisfactory explanation for the sinking of this former socialist senator, cultivated and educator, who impressed so much in 2017 in his role as candidate “Teacher of the Republic”. Absolutely none.

The goal of LREM is less to establish a republican front than to trap the right by creating a bloc of which Emmanuel Macron would become the candidate.

David Desgouilles

The will to merge the lists by LREM with the right in the second round, will it allow to maintain the republican front defended by the left, facing the RN?

I have the impression that the left will not take the risk of disappearing six more years from the regional assemblies as it did very recklessly in the North and in Provence in 2015. I would be very surprised if it started again this year. . As for LREM, its goal is less to establish a republican front than to trap the right by creating a bloc of which Emmanuel Macron would become the candidate, in fine. What is interesting here is LR’s attitude. In New Aquitaine, the merger that is emerging between Ms. Darrieusecq and Mr. Florian between the two towers is more directed against the outgoing PS Alain Rousset. In Center-Val-de-Loire, the merger of the lists of Messrs Fesneau and Forissier would perhaps make it possible to win at triangular against the RN on one side and the outgoing PS François Bonneau on the other. It is therefore not at all a question of the Republican Front, but of local LR Macron-compatible caciques who feel a proximity with LREM. This is not at all the case with Mr. Platret in Bourgogne-Franche-Comté who preferred the alliance with Debout La France, which pushes the LREM candidate to seek merger with the outgoing PS. As for the presidents Bertrand, Pécresse and Wauquiez, an alliance with LREM would kill their ambitions for 2022. In each region, the situation is therefore different depending on the personality and character of the right-wing candidate. The conclusion of all this is that Christian Jacob does not control anything at all.

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