France-Russia Colloquium: Ukraine Revolution Was a Putsch!

At the France-Russia Colloquium, held Thursday at the National Assembly (lower house of French Parliament) political figures denounced the “Anglo-Saxon” drift of the French media, attacked the sanctions, and called for preserving French-Russian relations.

Former Defense Minister Jean-Pierre Chevènement said that France and Russia, given their longstanding relations and both being permanent members of the UN Security Council, must work to preserve those relations. The 21st century must be one in which a “Great Europe, from the Atlantic to the shores of the Pacific” emerges. “The Ukrainian crisis can be solved politically; any other choice would be suicidal.” The Maidan, he said, can be seen as a “revolution,” or as a “coup d’état,” depending on your viewpoint. He exposed the unconstitutional process in Ukraine which caused Russia to feel pushed into a corner. He gave support to the Geneva agreement, one of “common sense” to avoid the destabilization of Ukraine. “Nobody has an interest in a new Cold War,” he said, going through all the statistics of French economic investment with Russia, stressing the need to go further in that direction. He clearly stated that the present government of France is totally against Ukraine’s membership in NATO, and noted that on average French politicians are significantly more moderate than the Russophobe media. So, “let’s not capitulate to fads; let’s keep our vision on the essentials,” he concluded.

Thierry Mariani, the co-president with Vladimir Yakunin of the Franco-Russian Dialogue Association, said the EU dialogue with Russia was “very disappointing.” Whenever he goes to Brussels for negotiations concerning Russia, it is clear that there’s no willingness to develop the relationship. He criticized the ambiguity of the EU in the eastern partnership, which often holds out expectations to countries that they might be offered EU membership, but only offering an association treaty. This is also what happened with Ukraine. He noted the detrimental role being played in the EU by the former members of the Soviet-dominated Warsaw Pact, and criticized their “revanchisme” and the “violence” of their diatribes against Russians. Clearly they consider “the Cold War is not finished and they are still settling accounts.” On Ukraine, he said: “a coup d’état was carried out against President ViktorYanukovych, who was democratically elected.”

Senator Yves Pozzo di Borgo, took on the Russophobia of the press, accusing them of being influenced by the two main “doctrinal schools” of foreign policy: the Institute of Political Sciences (Sciences Po), whom Jacques Cheminade accused years ago of being one of the main schools in France for Anglo-American oligarchism; and the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS). They are still the students of neo-con co-thinkers in France, Raymond Aron and Raymond Barre, who tend to accuse anybody who is not hostile to Russia, “crypto-Putinists,” etc.

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