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Five unnamed Oiseau Noir members #wingnut #racist #psycho thelocal.fr

French police smashed a neo-Nazi cell accused of plotting attacks on Jewish or Muslim places of worship, judicial sources said Tuesday.

Five members of the group, who were "close in ideology to the neo-Nazi movement" were charged between September and May over the alleged plot, which was still "ill-defined", a source close to the investigation said.

"The investigation suggested they were developing an ill-defined plot to carry out an attack, likely to target a place of worship," the judicial source said.

The investigation had been ongoing for several months, leading to the arrest of five people who were planning attacks against several targets, including the annual dinner of the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions (CRIF) and Muslim places of worship, according to reports.

Among the suspects are an assistant volunteer constable and a 15-year-old, according to reports in the French press. The arrests are believed to have taken place between September 2018 and the end of May 2019.

The five suspects had named their group 'L'Oiseau Noir' ('Black Bird) and they communicated via a forum where they discussed the possibilities of an attack, it was reported.

The investigation was opened after the September 2018 arrest of a volunteer constable whose contract was expiring in Grenoble, with investigators finding Kalashnikovs, explosives, a Glock pistol and a rifle at their home.

The investigation led them to the four other suspects, two of them minors.

Anti-terrorism investigators took over the investigation in January and charged the suspects with terror offences, including making and transporting explosive devices and being part of a terrorist conspiracy.

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Benoît Loeuillet and Philippe Vardon #conspiracy thelocal.fr

France's far-right National Front (FN) party suspended its top official in the southeastern city of Nice on Wednesday after he was secretly filmed denying the extent of the Holocaust.

In a documentary to be aired on French television later Wednesday, Benoit Loeuillet is heard discussing the mass killing of Jews during World War II, saying "I don't think there were that many deaths. There weren't six million."

After being shown selling books by Adolf Hitler and Holocaust-denying writer Robert Faurisson, he continues: "There weren't mass murders as it's been said."

The comments come less than six weeks before presidential elections in which FN leader Marine Le Pen is a frontrunner after spending years trying to improve the party's image.

Her estranged father Jean-Marie, a former paratrooper who co-founded the party in the 1970s, has been convicted repeatedly for anti-Semitic and racist comments such as calling the Holocaust a "detail of history".

The FN's head in southeast France -- a stronghold region for the party -- said Loeuillet had been suspended from the party and would face disciplinary proceedings, which could lead to his expulsion.

In a statement Wednesday, Loeuillet said he had "in no way denied the reality of the Holocaust," adding that his remarks had been "cleverly edited" for the documentary.

"I understand the emotion (the comments) can cause as they are presented, cleverly edited. But I am the opposite of the portrait of me that this documentary seeks to paint," he said, adding that his lawyer would lodge a complaint against the film's director.

But he added: "I understand perfectly that the National Front leadership deemed it opportune to suspend me in the midst of such media hysteria."

Le Pen's niece Marion Marechal-Le Pen, a National Front MP from the region and a rising star in the party, said Loeuillet "never made these sorts of comments in front of us, which are unacceptable."

The documentary to be shown on the C8 channel also shows Philippe Vardon, a campaign advisor to Marine Le Pen, handing out flyers and joking: "It's starting to get worrying: everyone who's shaking my hand is black."

A source close to Marechal-Le Pen told AFP that Vardon was "being ironic".

A rightwing Republicans party leader in the region, Christian Estrosi, mocked Loeuillet's suspension, tweeting: "The fake surprise of the (FN) officials is ridiculous."

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Marion Maréchal-Le Pen #fundie thelocal.fr

One is a pragmatist: a 47-year-old lawyer by training who has steered France's far-right National Front (FN) from pariah status to mainstream.

The other is an ideologue: her 25-year-old niece, a Roman Catholic traditionalist whose easy smile and blonde hair belie a stance on abortion, homosexuality and Islam that critics say is dangerous or sectarian.

On Sunday, Marine Le Pen and Marion Marechal-Le Pen -- respectively the daughter and grand-daughter of the FN's firebrand founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen -- established themselves as major players in France's political landscape.

[...]

Many observers believe it is her photogenic niece Marion who is the real ideological heir of Jean-Marie Le Pen, and better placed at a time of crisis to woo electors worried about the nation's future.

[...]

But since becoming an MP, and a mother for the first time, Marion has gone through an astonishing transformation, building a growing following among young radicals and older party supporters disgruntled with her aunt's apparent moderation.

[...]

Last month, she also demanded an end to state subsidies for family-planning associations, "which today are peddling abortion as something that's run-of-the-mill".

And last week, she raised a storm when, in Toulon, a Mediterranean city with a large number of citizens of Arab descent, she said Muslims could only be French "if they follow customs and a lifestyle that has been shaped by Greek and Roman influence and 16 centuries of Christianity."

"We are not a land of Islam," she said. "In our country, we don't wear djellaba clothing, we don't wear a veil and we don't impose cathedral-sized mosques."

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Dominique Granier and Montpellier Force Ouvrière #racist thelocal.fr

[Hyperlink and bolding in the original article]

A union representing bus drivers in Montpellier, southern France, has sparked outrage after it proposed the creation of a separate bus service for Roma people following complaints about the “unbearable” smell.

The idea was put initially forward by Dominique Granier, a member of the local Force Ouvriere (FO) union in the city in an article in the local Gazette de Montpellier newspaper dated April 2nd.

Describing the smell as “unbearable”, Granier said community’s use of the transport service constituted a “sanitary risk”.

His proposal concerns the number 9 bus route that connects the city centre with the Roma camp in the Grammont district.

The proposed bus service now has the backing of the city’s transport authority, the TaM (Transport for the Urban Area of Montpellier), according to Libération.

“The management has decided to follow the union by removing part of this bus line that is very popular with Roma people and to outsource this part of the line,” Bernard Gotis, a representative for the CGT union who is opposed to the proposal, told Libération.

According to the CGT union, FO union representatives for the transport authority withdrew many of their buses from the bus route last month in protest against the smell.

They also complained to the authority’s Committee for Hygiene, Security and Working Conditions (CHSCT) which then inspected the buses.

However the proposal has been strongly criticized.

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Damien Hameau-Brielles, Dominique Droin, Sophie Touvron, Fabien Rouquette and Michèle Boisset #fundie thelocal.fr

[Links in the original]

Here is a list of five National Front candidates whose faces have been plastered over the press for one reason or another in recent days - and it's a lot more than just racism and bigotry.

Damien Hameau-Brielles, the main candidate for Mayenne in the north west of France, posted a picture of himself on Facebook (see above) holding a gun to the head of a puppet version of President François Hollande.

While the picture, published in 2012, has long since been deleted, another post was dug out from the past where he made racist jibes about what he considered to be the laziness of "the blacks".

[...]

While the National Front doesn't have a candidate of its own in the Charente-Maritime department, western France, it is backing openly anti-Muslim Dominique Droin. The Frenchman has posted documents online about how Muslims have taken over France "without being armed, but through the stomachs of their wives". His paper pointed out that Muslim children "were multiplying much faster than children native to France".

Sophie Touvron is running for Torcy (Seine-et-Marne), east of Paris. She once shared a news story on her Facebook account about an explosion at a Halal butchery, adding the words "TOO GOOD". The L'Express newspaper reported that the explosion and subsequent fire left two people injured, one seriously.

In February, FN candidate in Narbonne, southern France, Fabien Rouquette took his regular Facebook postings a step too far when he shared a text-based image saying "Socialists, Communists, Muslims! Do something for the world and commit suicide." One of his colleagues in the area, Michèle Boisset, liked the post and added the comment "What a beautiful dream!" reported L'Express.

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Jacques Cheminade #conspiracy thelocal.fr

Jacques Cheminade, an independent, is one of 10 candidates who has been cleared by France's Constitutional Court to run in the April 22nd first round of the battle to unseat incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy.

[...]

Cheminade appeared on LCP television Wednesday, in a debate sponsored by AFP and other French media. He was asked about his support for US extremist Lyndon Larouche, a notorious conspiracy theorist.

In particular, he was asked whether the Queen is a drugs baroness.

"No, not all her fortune," he replied. "There are many other sources, but it's a series of trafficking operations within which, yes, there were drugs."

Cheminade linked this claim to allegations about the Rothschild banking family, and compared the economic crisis to "the start of the Nazi regime and the measures it gradually put in place, as in the United States today."

[Bolding mine]

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Minute #racist thelocal.fr

Moroccan-born Najat Vallaud-Belkacem is the first woman in French history to hold the office of education minister, the latest step in a brilliant career for the telegenic protegee of President Francois Hollande.

But far-right magazine Minute splashed a picture of her on the cover of its latest issue that hit newsstands on Wednesday with the caption: "A Moroccan Muslim at the national education (ministry). The Najat Vallaud-Belkacem provocation."

It is not the first time the magazine has sparked outrage.

Earlier this year, it featured a cover picture of France's black Justice Minister Christiane Taubira and headlines which read: "Crafty as a monkey" and "Taubira gets her banana back."

[Bolding mine]

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Mike Plusultra and others unnamed Facebook users #racist thelocal.fr

The French government has firmly rebuked scores of 'racist' comments left on an education ministry Facebook post which shows a back-to-school scene with mostly non-white children. The image has elicited a furious online debate.

It’s a seemingly innocent enough photo: eight healthy, well-dressed and cute kids stand in a row at school in a Facebook posting with information for parents anxious over the start of the new school year.

But the image, which shows a majority of black children and one clearly visible white child sparked a flood of racist comments - as well as an avalanche of anti-racist responses.

The tone of many of the 1,000-plus comments - not including those deleted by the government - became so harsh the Ministry of Education stepped in and denounced the “abusive and racist” character of some threads.

“This page is a place of positive and constructive dialogue about school and is not a political forum,” the ministry said.

Among the mountain of comments that have accumulated in the post since it went up on Thursday were those from Facebook user Mike Plusultra who tapped into the fear that France is being overrun by immigrants.

“I don’t think this photo is very representative of French schools: What the heck is the white kid still doing there? Oh, I just heard he’s from Kosovo. The future of France, the replacement of the population is well underway,” he said.

[Bolding mine; Facebook link in the original]