French press review 6 October 2016

Will President Hollande reap benefits of rescuing Alstom's historic plant in Belfort?  Sarkozy comes under fire for his alleged "large appettite for right-wing dishes." And what next for Emmanuel Macron, the "youthful intruder" of French politics? 

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Some papers question the rationale behind the order of 15 high-speed trains which the national carrier SNCF doesn't really need, just to safeguard 400 jobs.

Alstom

Despite the cheers from the unions and the ruling Socialist party which have greeted the rescue package, Le Monde argues that it isn't even certain that President François Hollande will reap the price of the political gamble.

As it points out, the Belfort constituency fell to the National Front since the 2015 regional elections, Marine Le Pen’s movement carrying more than 34 per cent of ballots cast.

More so, as it explains, even if Alstom's management may be celebrating its ability to blackmail the state over jobs, and the breathing space the rescue of the factory will bring to the Belfort workers, other worker around France have no illusions.

Their condition, it claims, will remain as fragile as Prime Minister Manuel Valls' "false truth" of being capable of preventing an unproductive factory from being shut down.

Anyone but Sarkozy

As campaigns for presidential primaries heat up in France, thel'Humanité ups the ante against opposition Republican Party leader Nicolas Sarkozy.

The Communist newspaper already eyes the former French President as its sworn political enemy of the Left on the strength of his record during his previous Elysée mandate and the hardline agenda he is pursuing in his bid get re-elected.

According to the daily, Sarkozy is an embodiment of social decay, a declared “Atlanticist” with an oligarchic concept of power and a large appetite for right-wing dishes”.

Youthful Macron

The youthful former French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron bursting with ambition despite his rather short experience, had his fair share of the media glare.

L'Union says being young is a taboo in French politics, pointing to the political bullets raining on him since he resigned from the government to launch his political party, becoming the second most popular politician in the left.

According to the regional newspaper, paradoxically, the more people adhere to his ideas, the more politicians are panicking. It's the famous theory about the intruder ready to dispossess you of your powers and secrets, says l'Union.

ForLa Presse de la Manche Emmanuel Macron, never won an election which is rare for a candidate standing in a presidential election. That's bound to be a handicap says the paper for a man used to handling big files but who may not necessarily understand the little heavy files of ordinary people.

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