Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Soccer War

Two French footballers got into hot water with the far right when they invited evicted Paris squatters to be their guests at a soccer match against Italy. The African squatters were booted in a paramilitary action by the French government back on August 17th and have been living in a local gymnasium ever since. Pravda has the details.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Do you have a non-Pravda source for this? It's an amazing story, but Pravda is a terrible source -- they do a lot of National Enquirer type stories where they appear to be inventing from the whole cloth...

Cory Doctorow

rn said...

Oh ye of little faith. It's an AP story that appeared in the International Herald Tribune, too:

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2006/09/06/sports/EU_SPT_SOC_France_Italy_Squatters.php

rn said...

Sorry, the complete link wouldn't fit on blogger (memo to blogger: fix this glitch) Here it is split in two lines:

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2006/09/06/sports
/EU_SPT_SOC_France_Italy_Squatters.php

greu said...

Bashing the ethnicity of the football team is pretty common behaviour from the far right in France, and honestly it doesn't make a lot of noise.

What's important here is that the two players, and mainly Lilian Turam, are directly opposing the curent "ministre de l'interieur", (governement's number two, in charge of police, elections, secret services ...), Nicolas Sarkozy, a nervous brat in good position for the next presidential election .

He has taken many stands against immigration trying to gain votes from the extreme right, that is true, but he is the leader of the "democratic" right party.

It is not the first time that Turam publicly opposes him, the last time was when Sarkozy called "racaille" (something like "scum" ) the youth of the poor districts ( assimilating all of them to delinquants et al) . This and the death of two younger teens when they were chased by the police (for no reasons it seems) led to the recent urban riots .

Sarkozy's usual defense is to say that the players are rich and no longer have any connections with the reality of the suburbs (unlike him, of course ... ) .

Another one of Sarkozy's great achievement is to make kids without ID papers leave the country with their "illegal" parents, back to their "country of origin", thus leading to the police raiding schools to take kids away. This was so scandalous that it led to the auto organisation of parents against the expulsion of kids of their kids' class .

The people evicted from the Squat in Cachan are i think still staying in a gymnasium nearby and despite heavy mobilisation from militants, nothing is done by the public power. The states's strategy here seems to wait and bury the whole story .

rn said...

Thanks, greu, for the clarification. I knew Sarkozy was pandering to the right, but I had no idea how much.

I've blogged about the squatter evictions in Paris several times in the past and I'm not content to "wait and bury the whole story." So if you hear anything, please pass the word on.