France: 20 ex-generals warn Macron of chaos, civil war

Open letter urge authorities to act before violence is unleashed by growing chaos

France: 20 ex-generals warn Macron of chaos, civil war French President Emmanuel Macron salutes troops during the annual Bastille Day military parade in Paris, France on July 14, 2019. ( Mustafa Yalçın - Anadolu Agency )


Former generals and military personnel warned President Emmanuel Macron in a letter to act against the looming dangers of hatred due to social tensions, religious extremism or face a civil war-like situation in the future.

The open letter is an initiative of retired gendarmerie officer Jean-Pierre Fabre-Bernadac that was published on his Place Armes blog, an online community of military personnel.

It was signed by 20 retired generals and more than 1,000 officials of different rank and files in the military, police and gendarmerie who claimed that they cannot remain “indifferent” and “passive spectators” in the current circumstances.

“Perils are mounting, violence is increasing day by day. Who would have predicted ten years ago that a professor would one day be beheaded when he left college?,” the letter asks while noting growing social problems, religious extremism and “hateful and fanatic partisans.”

The letter said Islamism in France has resulted in an attempt to create districts “where the laws of the Republic do not apply” and “transform them into territories subject to dogmas contrary to our constitution.”

It claims that the ruling power uses the police as a proxy and scapegoat in demonstrations like the yellow vests through which the French people are expressing despair.

The letter exhorts the ruling dispensation to move beyond “dabbling and guilty silences” and act, otherwise it will be responsible for a civil war and several deaths borne out of the growing chaos.

Fabre-Bernadac whose latest book, The damned of France--between media lynching and daily violence, released last month also talks highlights similar narratives and fractures in French society based on identities like fascist, Islamophobic and homophobic.

In a discussion on Sud Radio earlier this week, he said he was fearful of the current situation which is headed toward an explosion.

“I will not say the word civil war but it is not far," he said.

The letter was endorsed by far-right opposition leader Marine Le Pen on the right-wing news site Valeurs Actuelles.

“The concerns that you courageously express cannot remain at the stage of expressing indignation, however powerful. It requires in democracy, the search for a political solution which must materialize through a project of alternation,” she said, inviting retired military personnel to join her campaign in the 2022 presidential election.

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