France has just rejected the rise of fascism

Photo by Olympia De Maismont/AFP: People celebrate during an election night rally following the first results of the second round of France's legislative election at Republique Square in Paris

Contributed by Joe Montero

Boy is the establishment panicking about the fact that the French electorate has voted in the Jean-Luc Mélenchon led France Unbowed as the biggest party in their parliament. Global big media is sending out signals of doom, predicting that France is now unworkable. Governments are keeping their distance. They are united in trying to delegitimise the election result. So much for respecting the wishes of voters.

Far right and progressives react at the same time to French election results

Video from Guardian News

Big media had beat up the prospect of an essentially fascist victory under the name of Mari Le Pen’s National Rally. These media outlets that had a problem with a leftist victory had no problem with a fascist one.

The difference in the treatment of National Rally compared to that given to France Unbowed and the New Popular Front that it leads provides a good education. It reveals a lot about the nature of the privileged and powerful and the lengths to which they are prepared to go to in protecting their privilege and power. National Rally is their tool to this end in the conditions France faces today.

The propaganda arm of National Rally is France’s own version of Rupert Murdoch, Vincent Bolloré, the ruthless billionaire corporate raider ad owner of the Vivendi media group, controlling numerous television stations and newspapers. Bolloré is key to the rise of Le Pen and her party.

The people of France rejected national Rally, came out to vote in record numbers and celebrated the victory in the streets.

Global media began started denigrating the victors as soon as the result became obvious. Out came headlines warning of chaos and the inability to govern France. Beat up stories of riots have been numerous. The winners are defined by the denigrating term far left. In doing this, big media tsked on its role in defending privilege and power, not only in France, but in other countries as well.

France is going through a rejection of the traditional parties, and this has become more acute here than in most other countries. The traditional Socialists and Republicans are now embers of what they once were. They lost their legitimacy because the French population had concluded that they did not represent their interests and lost faith in them. They demanded change.

France’s leftists take most seats, as snap election delivers deadlock

Video from Al Jazeera English

National Rally, created by a section of the privileged and powerful came into existence to capture the demand for change and channel it into a direction they can control.

Emmanuel Macron and his Renaissance party (otherwise known as Citizens Together) was another creature crated by a section of the privileged and powerful. This time under the guise of centrists, led by a former merchant banker. The election toppled Macron’s party off its pedestal as the nation’s biggest and governing political party.

The conditions have also given rise to an alternative and real demand for change. One where the likes of Bolloré and his are not in control, and government exists to the needs of the majority. This is what is horrifying vested interests everywhere. The French election result has implications for Europe and beyond.

France unbowed showed leadership in bringing together the Socialist Party, Greens and Communist Party into the New Popular Front, and the New Popular Front was able to link to the Renaissance and the conservative Republicans parties to form the Republican Front and block National Rally. Each party withdrew candidates where others might get a bigger vote.

Even here in Australia, we are witnessing the rise of elements of the National Rally ideology. It’s not just Pauline Hanson. The treatment of Senator Fatima Payman at the hands of a Labor Party machine,

Is an expression of the rise of the racist wave against those of Middle East background and Islamophobia promoted by Murdoch’s media and others. Bias extends to the reaction to the French election result. There is nothing positive in it from this quarter. Even our politicians keep silent. Trey don’t dare congratulate the French people for standing against fascism.

Back in France, efforts are underway to put a stop to the formation of a France Unbowed led government. The will of the people is put aside. Macron is considering options behind closed doors. He has asked his former Prime Minister to stay on as caretakers for now, until something is worked out. How can he do this with any legitimacy at all? This is his dilemma. He is in a weak position and may not be able to succeed.

Exit poll shows left wing coalition on top in France’s legislative election

Video from Al Jazeera English

Mélenchon has made it clear that the largest party should lead a coalition government, that this will not involve Macron’s party, that it would stand resolutely against National Rally, and will put a start towards building a new France. A mandate has been achieved to act on some key demands like reversing the lifting of the retirement age, action on other social policies and climate sustainability, and in foreign affairs, to recognize the Palestinian state ss an immediate priority.

To form a majority government, factions of the Macron and Republicans will have to be won over into a more permanent Republican Front that respects the election result and go along with the new government’s mandate. There are also 14 deputies from what is known as the Independent Left. Bringing these forces together is possible.

The alternative is a minority government, which can still legislate on an issue-by-issue basis, and of course there is political activity outside the parliament designed to extend a grass roots movement.

But expect the those that want to stop this to do everything they can to destabilise any progress, and even go as far to overthrow the government by ant means. A Mélenchon led government will be in for a bumpy ride. It will have to put up with daily bad press, accusations, provocations, and behind the scenes plots. Big money will invest in an overthrow. Expect National Rally and other fascist groups to take to the streets, efforts made to incite the disgruntled.

On the other hand, possibilities only exist when opportunities are taken hold of. This is an opportunity for France to set deep roots through society, strong enough to overcome all difficulties and succeed. National Rally still poses a major threat. by building unity ad a vision to be worked towards, this can be overcome.

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