Prague, July 18 (CTK) – Reaction to terror is becoming a political weapon in France, Zbynek Petracek writes in yesterday’s issue of daily Lidove noviny (LN), commenting on the terrorist attack in Nice on Friday in which 84 people, including children, died and more than 200 were injured.
In this sense, France is going against what is usual in similar situations. Terrorist attacks create the atmosphere of unity and even if the majority does not think so, politicians underline this, sometimes even with exaggerated pathos, Petracek writes.
Interestingly, in France the make-believe atmosphere is violated not only by anti-system parties of which this is automatically expected, such as Marine Le Pen’s National Front. Even the state-forming opposition, specifically Nicolas Sarkozy’s Republicans, have raised the political weapon, Petracek writes.
It is a question of how much this reflects the fact that terror has tormented France for 18 months, or whether this is rather due to the shift towards the “voice of the people” that resounds around Europe, the most recently in Britain and Austria, Petracek writes.
But it is noteworthy that the government, specifically Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve starts to use the developments for the political struggle, he adds.
Cazeneuve has called on the French to reinforce the operational reserves of the security forces, the police and the military, Petracek writes and adds that the term he used to address people, “French patriots,” was interesting.
The term patriot is considered an almost abusive word in the current Western society. The USA Patriot Act passed after the September 11, 2001, a terrorist attack on the country is considered reactionary and repressive, Petracek writes.
One month ago, the German Greens called on fans not to support their national teams at the football EURO, and now, all of a sudden, Cazeneuve appeals to patriots, Petracek writes.
He writes that 75 years ago, when the Nazi Germany attacked the Soviet Union, Stalin almost disappeared for some time, but then, all of a sudden, he re-emerged and addressed the nation avoiding the word Communism, but stressing Russian patriotism, which was suppressed until then, Petracek writes.
He writes that this is how the term the Great Patriotic War was created, and it is still considered noteworthy.
France has no such parallel, but it unwittingly shows that patriotism ceases to be historical junk where a society or nation is in a tight spot, Petracek writes.