Posted on May 24, 2024

Who Speaks for France?

Timothy Vorgenss, American Renaissance, May 24, 2024

Credit Image: © Panoramic via ZUMA Press

Subscribe to future audio versions of AmRen articles here.

In two weeks, on June 9, the French will go to the polls to elect 81 of the 720 members of the European Parliament, the European equivalent of the US Congress. There are now two nationalist parties in France, both competing for the same votes. What is the difference between the two?

The Rassemblement National (National Rally) is the current name of what used to be the National Front, founded in 1972 by Jean-Marie Le Pen. His daughter Marine Le Pen took over the party in 2011. Jordan Bardella, who is now 28 years old, has been head of the party since 2022, though Marine is still a powerful presence and probable candidate for the French presidential elections in 2027.

Reconquête (Reconquest), founded in 2021, is led by Eric Zemmour, of Algerian Jewish-Berber heritage. One of the party’s three vice presidents is Marion Maréchal, granddaughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen and niece of Marine Le Pen. More explicit in its language and tougher in its proposals, Reconquest has established itself as the only party that dares to talk about remigration, the process of sending illegal immigrants and non-assimilable citizens back to their home countries.

Marion Maréchal (Credit Image: © Panoramic via ZUMA Press)

The Rassemblement National (RN) immigration-control policy fits into just 105 words (88 in English) on the official website.

  • End mass immigration and family reunification.
  • Consider asylum requests only when made from outside of France.
  • Limit social programs to citizens and pay old-age support only to those who have worked in France for at least five years.
  • Give citizens priority for subsidized housing and employment.
  • Withdraw the right to live in France from any foreigner who has been unemployed for at least a year.
  • Systematically expel illegal immigrants, and foreign delinquents and criminals.
  • End birthright citizenship and permit naturalization only on the basis of merit and assimilation.

Eric Zemmour’s platform is much more substantial, including military-style border control, prosecution of “coyotes” as human traffickers, and abrogation of treaties that force France to accept immigrants it doesn’t want. Most substantially, it would establish a cabinet-level Ministry of Remigration “equipped with all necessary equipment including, in particular, airplanes” to carry out all necessary expulsions.

The site also includes clear graphics such as this one that says, “There have never been so many immigrants in France.”

This graphic points out that the top three countries of immigrant origin are Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia.

This graph notes out that only a paltry 13 percent of people ordered expelled from France are actually made to leave. (OQTF stands for “order to leave French territory.”)

Other graphics note the crushing cost to the taxpayer of the current Islamic influx.

Reconquest has become the standard-bearer of the nationalist cause in France. It is the first and only party to talk openly about remigration, whereas remigration makes RN candidates uncomfortable; Marine Le Pen doesn’t want to hear about it.

Worse still, she was publicly outraged that her German partner in the European Parliament, the Alternative for Germany (AfD), held a meeting attended by Martin Sellner to consider remigration. At the time, she said to journalists: “I consider that we have, if this is the case, a flagrant opposition with the AfD. And we will have to discuss our differences, and see if these differences have, or do not have, consequences on our ability to ally ourselves in the same group [the Identity and Democracy group within the Europarliament].”

She reportedly asked Alice Weidel, co-president of the AfD, to commit in writing never to include remigration in the German party’s platform. Despite attempts at appeasement by Alice Weidel, Mrs. Le Pen has maintained a tough stance towards the German party.

I believe it is safe to say that “anti-racism” is established reality within the RN. It’s no longer reasonable to think that Marine Le Pen is just being strategic, or extremely cautious about what the press might write. She is expressing the essence of her personal thinking.

Remigration is a word that Marine Le Pen can’t bear to hear any more than Angela Merkel could bear to see the German flag at her political rallies. Remigration is too dangerous for the media, not very popular with the population, and a proposal that some think could lead to civil war. Many people think the possibility of civil war is all too real. Racial conflict is already widespread.

Does Jordan Bardella, current president of the National Rally, agree with his aunt by marriage (his wife is Nolwenn Olivier, another niece of Mrs. Le Pen)? Journalists claim to have tracked down “racist” tweets from what they claim was an anonymous seven-year-old Twitter account that belonged to Mr. Bardella. Unperturbed, he denies it was his account, and the RN list of candidates continues in the lead for the Euro-elections with a forecasted 32 percent of the vote.

Mrs. Le Pen seems to have chosen her replacement with great care, anxious not to have to fear what would be for her a step backwards towards her father’s reputation for “radicalism,” which she has always detested; she has suffered from it since childhood.

I participated as a simple activist in Mrs. Le Pen’s 2012 presidential campaign, and attended her big speech in Lyon on April 7, 2012. I can confidently say that her positions have not changed in 20 years. The RN sees Islam as compatible with France, and Muslims as even potential supporters.

Eric Zemmour and Reconquest are different. They see Islam as the historic enemy of the West and the flag of an anti-white Third World conquering spirit. His supporters realize that the “global south” eventually wants to dominate the West and punish it. Reconquest recognizes that we are in a civilizational struggle and does not timidly flee from the word “race.”

Eric Zemmour. “Only a free people can make a great nation.” (Credit Image: © Maxppp via ZUMA Press)

Before the arrival of Reconquest, Marine Le Pen and Jordan Bardella could coast on the reputation of the party’s founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen. They could speak to angry Frenchmen, such as the millions who took part in the “yellow vest” movement, and win their support by talking about the cost of living, pensions, and salary increases. They could surf on the inherited image of the party — both among the people and among journalists — and talk only about social issues.

For their part, Mr. Zemmour and Mrs. Maréchal have the advantage of telling the truth — but the disadvantage of telling it to people who don’t want to hear it. Only 6.2 percent of voters now say they will vote for the party. When will the French take the leap of faith — the leap of faith we have been waiting for at every election but that fails to materialize?

What’s at stake is the survival of the only political party carrying the torch of resistance to invasion, versus the sham that the RN appears to have become. European parties such as the AfD that are looking for allies against invaders would be well advised to suspect the RN has become a soft, ineffectual right, the very thing against which it has pretended to fight.