The Daily Mail:
La Pen applauds! Macro threatens to punish
- Twenty retired generals, as well as serving officers, signed the ferocious rebuke
- Incendiary letter claims France at risk of ‘disintegration’ at ‘hands of Islamists’
- Defence Minister Florence Parly warned ‘these are unacceptable actions’
- She added that those serving officers who signed letter would be disciplined
Emmanuel Macron has threatened to punish generals who signed an open letter warning that the country is heading for ‘civil war’ because of radical Islam.
Twenty retired generals, as well as several serving soldiers, signed the letter which warned that failure to act against the ‘suburban hordes’ – a reference to the predominantly immigrant population of the housing estates which surround French cities – will lead to deaths ‘in the thousands.’
The government strongly condemned the letter, which was published on the 60th anniversary of a failed coup d’etat by generals opposed to France granting independence to Algeria.
‘These are unacceptable actions,’ Defence Minister Florence Parly said Monday, adding that serving military members had flouted a law requiring them to remain politically neutral.
‘There will be consequences, naturally,’ Parly said, adding that she had instructed the army chief of staff to discipline them.
Despite condemnation from the government and left-wing parties, Marine Le Pen hailed the letter which was signed by 80 officers, as well as the 20 generals.
‘I invite you to join us in taking part in the coming battle, which is the battle of France,’ she wrote in a response to the letter.
Le Pen was widely criticised by her opponents on both the left and right for her overtures to the soldiers behind what the left-wing daily Liberation described as a ‘call to sedition’.
The lead signatory was Christian Piquemal, 80, who commanded the Foreign Legion before losing his privileges as a retired officer after being arrested while taking part in an anti-Islam demonstration in 2016.
It was written by Jean-Pierre Fabre-Bernadac, a former officer, and signed by 1000 others who were in lower ranks.
The incendiary letter reads: ‘France is in danger. Several mortal perils threaten her. Even in retirement, we remain soldiers of France and cannot in the present circumstances remain indifferent to the fate of our beautiful country.’
The retired officers claimed that France was ‘disintegrating with the Islamists of the hordes of the banlieue [suburbs] who are detaching large parts of the nation and turning them into territory subject to dogmas contrary to our constitution’.
Macron also came under fire with the retired officers blasting the state for allowing brutal police action against yellow vest protesters in the country.
In a chilling call, the letter claimed that the country would ‘explode’ into civil war if ‘nothing was done’, which would lead to the deaths of thousands.
They also claimed they had broad support in the military and were ‘ready to support’ politicians who focused on the ‘safety of a nation’.
Le Pen’s National Rally gave the letter their backing, saying it reflected the views of ‘patriots’ like General Pierre de Villiers, former chief of the defence staff, who was sacked by Macron in 2017.