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Photos and text, unless otherwise noted, Copyright 2003,2004,2005,2006 - Alan M. Pavlik
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"It is better to be drunk with loss and to beat the ground, than to let the deeper things gradually escape."

- I. Compton-Burnett, letter to Francis King (1969)

"Cynical realism – it is the intelligent man’s best excuse for doing nothing in an intolerable situation."

- Aldous Huxley, "Time Must Have a Stop"

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Wednesday, 9 November 2005

Topic: Breaking News

Just in From Paris: First Night of Curfew
Instead of commentary, news, from Ric Erickson, editor of MetropoleParis, an account of the situation on the ground there today.

First Night of Curfew

PARIS - Wednesday, 9 November - Reports this morning claimed fewer incidents during the night in the Paris area and around France. It was the 13th consecutive night of disturbances, and the first in which an emergency curfew was put in force in selected areas.

Many fewer cars were burned in the Ile-de-France last night as well as fewer throughout the country. Affected communes were 196, and arrests fell to 280, 50 less than Monday night. An interior ministry spokesman thought the total arrested to be 1830 since the beginning of the disturbances on 27. October.

The curfew plan concerns 25 out of 96 departments in France, with 38 urban areas targeted. Movement of persons, and driving, could be restricted. A curfew can be set for the city of Paris by the préfet of police, but mayor Bertrand Delanoe thought such a measure would be 'disproportionate.'

One such town last night was Evreux in Normandy, where both minors and adults of the Madeleine quarter were subjected to a total curfew from 22:00 to 05:00. Evreux was the scene of extreme violence on Saturday night.

During today's question period in the National Assembly minister of the interior Nicolas Sarkozy announced that he was demanding the deportation of convicted rioters, if they were foreigners, with or without valid residence permits. According to Sarkozy, 120 foreigners have been convicted during the current wave of riots. Right-wing deputies applauded the idea.

In other remarks the short minister lauded the record of a special group of police, the GIR, created to combat the underground economy in the suburbs. He said 1600 investigations have been carried out, resulting in 12,000 arrests, with 3205 jailed.

Opposition politicians from several parties expressed doubts about the wisdom of the curfew, and many questioned the public absence of the president, Jacques Chirac.

Dollar Picks Up

The euro's value compared to the dollar has been falling since summer but the slide has grown more apparent in the past week. For a brief period on Tuesday one euro was worth $1.17, down from its recent high of $1.25 in September. Due to huge trade imbalances, currency specialists believe the value of the euro will climb again before year's end.

Copyright © 2005 – Ric Erickson, MetropoleParis

Editor's Notes:

From the Associated Press, see this summary of what's up south of Paris, and note who is in the game now:
Arsonists struck a warehouse used by Nice-Matin newspaper in the town of Grasse, national police spokesman Patrick Reydy said. A total of 161 cars have been burned - about half in the Nice area - and nine buildings damaged across the Riviera region.

Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, who previously inflamed passions by referring to troublemakers as "scum," said 120 foreigners have been convicted for roles in the violence, and he called on local authorities to expel them.

"I have asked regional prefects to expel foreigners who were convicted - whether they have proper residency papers or not - without delay," he said.

Far-right leader Jean-Marie Le Pen, in an interview Wednesday with The Associated Press, said French nationals of immigrant backgrounds should be stripped of their nationality and sent "back to their country of origin" if they committed crimes.
Lots of information on Jean-Marie Le Pen can be found here, and Le Pen has been mentioned often in these pages, as on January 16, 2005 in It Was the Week of the Nazi Revival. And it seems Le Pen was born on June 20, 1928, so he shares a birthday with the editor, the guitarist Chet Atkins, Errol Flynn, Nicole Kidman and Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. He shares nothing else with us.

Posted by Alan at 15:41 PST | Post Comment | Permalink

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