No Le Pen government: what went wrong? And what could still go right?

Jordan Bardella, president of Marine Le Pen’s party National Rally, after learning last night that he would not be Prime Minister

On 7th July, Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (Rassemblement National – RN) secured the greatest vote in its history, but paradoxically one which was immediately seen as a setback! And in this case, both the pessimists and the optimists have a point.

While populist anti-immigration parties in other countries (including Le Pen’s allies in Austria and the Netherlands) have already been part of several coalition governments, and while the RN has steadily become more ‘moderate’ in many policy areas to a point where some readers might no longer recognise it as having any ideological relationship to our cause, the remaining aura of Le Pen’s father Jean-Marie (founder of the RN’s predecessor Front National) and the national obsession with its Second World War history, combine to make French nationalism a special case.

The previous National Assembly elected in 2022 was deadlocked, with both the far-left and the RN refusing either to back President Emmanuel Macron’s ‘centrists’, or (needless to say) to work with each other. Macron called a snap general election, believing that he had nothing to lose, but the RN polled very well in the first round, leading to speculation that Le Pen’s party might just about achieve an Assembly majority, or come close enough that they were able to form a minority government. The RN’s president Jordan Bardella (who will be 29 in September) was to be the party’s candidate for Prime Minister.

In the event the RN and allies obtained 143 seats – up from 89 two years ago – after polling 37% of the second round with over ten million votes. But this left them far short of a majority, and they are not even the largest group in the new Assembly, as had been widely predicted. In fact they ended up in third place, behind the far-left ‘Popular Front’ on 182 seats, and Macron’s centrist bloc on 168 seats.

The remnants of the French centre-right – the Republican party – now total just 46 seats, with another 14 Assembly members being conservatives unaligned either to the Republicans or to Le Pen’s bloc.

Bardella’s first reaction was to denounce the RN’s opponents for their opportunistic and unprincipled alliance. So it was: but arguably Bardella and Le Pen had been equally inconsistent, spending the past few years ditching traditional nationalist attitudes and latterly making alliances with conservatives who favour shrinking the French state, whereas the RN seeks to expand it! (Seventeen of the Le Pen bloc’s 143 seats belong to these conservatives, led by the former leader of the Republican party Éric Ciotti, and one is an independent right-winger outside the party, but whom the RN backed.)

Moreover, the RN leadership is itself arguably to blame for organisational failures that became evident during the campaign. Most notably, despite having themselves called repeatedly for an early election, Le Pen and Bardella had failed to prepare a full list of candidates in advance. The RN was caught out by Macron’s snap election, and had to scramble to recruit last minute candidates, some of whom proved inadequate.

To some extent this reflected a long term problem with the Le Pen movement. Although French nationalism has a far stronger intellectual tradition than its British equivalent, it has been the case for years that a large part of this elite disliked the FN and RN. Many of the best and brightest of the movement stayed outside or broke away from Le Pen’s parties: this is a problem that the RN leader will hope to fix by reuniting nationalism in alliance with her niece. But arguably the ultimate logical outcome of the ‘de-demonisation’ process is for Marine Le Pen herself to fall on her sword, and for the movement to choose a leader from outside the Le Pen dynasty.

Yet although these problems have to be acknowledged, Le Pen is in other ways ideally placed to take advantage of what seems sure to be a period of chaos and confusion as the various leftist and ‘centrist’ factions attempt to find a common agenda for government. In her first comments on the results, Le Pen said she “sees the seeds of tomorrow’s victory in today’s result”.

Ultra-left leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon was quick to claim victory after the second round, but while he is the most visible leader of the ‘New Popular Front’, it seems likely that other elements in that coalition will favour a deal with President Macron’s ‘centrists’.

Under the French constitution, there cannot be another parliamentary election during the next twelve months, so it will not be possible to resolve deadlock in the manner of the 1910 or 1974 elections in the UK, nor is it possible for Macron to repeat the threats deployed last year by Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez to hold a second election within months – threats which greatly strengthened his hand in coalition negotiations.

A year or two of chaos should be an ideal build-up to Le Pen’s next (and probably final) attempt to win the French Presidency in 2027.

However, it cannot be denied that the two-round system used for all French elections is likely to continue to be an obstacle. It has consistently worked against the RN/FN and was an important factor in Le Pen’s decision to ‘de-demonise’ her party. Candidates can be elected outright by polling more than 50% in the first round, but if no-one achieves this then the top two candidates in each constituency, plus any third-placed candidate supported by more than 12.5% of the electorate, goes into a second round.

In practice, especially this year, there has been a tendency for these third placed candidates to withdraw in favour of the main anti-Le Pen candidate, which makes it all the more difficult for RN to achieve a majority. This year 37 RN candidates (including Le Pen herself) were elected outright in the first round, plus one from the faction of the conservative Republican Party that supported the decision of its now ousted leader Ciotti to ally with Le Pen.

This Ciotti faction is close to Marion Maréchal, Marine Le Pen’s niece, who at the start of the election campaign broke away from the rival nationalist party Reconquête.

France is one of the few European countries that for a short time had not just one but two electorally credible ‘far right’ parties. In fact, until Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, it had seemed likely that Reconquête would overtake the RN and that its founder, Jewish journalist and anti-Islam polemicist Éric Zemmour, rather than Le Pen would be the main dissident candidate for the presidency in 2027. However, while Le Pen swiftly condemned Putin, Zemmour found it much more difficult to escape the electoral consequences of his earlier Putinism, and his party swiftly declined. The precise timing of that decline makes it impossible even for those who might agree with Zemmour’s stance to deny that this policy area was the critical factor undermining him with French voters.

Maréchal was elected only a few weeks ago as a Reconquête MEP and in recent years has been effectively its deputy leader, working with Zemmour. However, after Macron called this year’s snap election, she repaired relations with her aunt and proposed negotiating an electoral pact. This led Zemmour to expel Maréchal and her supporters.

In 2022 Éric Zemmour seemed set to overtake Marine Le Pen as leader of the French anti-immigration movement: but two years later his political career seems over.

Zemmour was left with only one MEP rather than five: his surviving ally is his partner, Sarah Knafo. It’s a strange irony that the most ‘hardline’ French nationalist party (among those who contest elections) is led by Jews whose families came from Algeria and Morocco – while the vast majority of French Jews remained ‘loyal’ to parties of the centre and left, which are now in de facto alliance with the Corbyn-style anti-Zionist leftwinger, Jean-Luc Mélenchon!

Reconquête is/was both harder line than RN against immigration (especially against Islam) and more traditionally conservative (in an Anglo-American, quasi-Thatcherite sense) on economic matters, while Le Pen has taken her party onto quasi-socialist turf and has become the natural leader of French workers.

Due to being more conservative than her aunt where economic and welfare policies are concerned, Marion Maréchal was a natural emissary from Le Pen to affluent voters who share her anti-immigration stance but who also (unlike Le Pen) hope for tax cuts.

In the first round of the Assembly elections, Reconquête‘s decline was obvious: their 330 candidates polled a total of 238,934 votes (0.8%). It’s difficult to see how Zemmour can be politically relevant again, other than as an anti-Islam journalist and a mouthpiece for pro-Moscow views.

The stunning success of RN in both the European election and in the first round of the Assembly election led to exaggerated hopes that the ‘de-demonisation’ strategy had succeeded and that the French bourgeoisie would rally behind Le Pen (despite her pro-worker stance on tax and state spending), so as to be sure of excluding Mélenchon and the ultra-left from power.

In fact the second round demonstrated the strength of what some have called the ‘glass ceiling’ or ‘cordon sanitaire‘ excluding Le Pen’s party from power. Old-fashioned British psephologists would have called this a ‘plateau effect’: a party can make rapid growth, but then reaches a stage where further progress is near impossible without some seismic shock to the electorate – a serious split in a rival party, an economic catastrophe, or racial conflict verging on civil war.

This ‘glass ceiling’ is evident when one looks at the detailed results, where it is obvious that the RN had ‘maxed out’ its appeal to conservatives in the first round. It’s astounding to see the extent to which, time and again, the RN failed to increase its first round vote significantly – despite the fact that its opponents were ideological opposites whose votes should not easily have transferred to each other.

To give just a few examples (UK readers will note that French constituency names follow the soulless pattern of French and American revolutionaries, with each region being divided into numbered constituencies rather than traditional names like ‘Ribble Valley’ or ‘Chelsea & Fulham’):

  • Ain, 4th constituency (in east-central France, near the Swiss border). This seat had already been won by the RN in 2022, and after their Assembly member Jérôme Buisson took 46% in the first round, his victory might have seemed a formality. But in the end he won the second round only very narrowly, 51-49, against a Macronist candidate who secured almost all the second choice votes of Greens, ultra-leftists, and conservatives.
  • Aisne, 2nd constituency (based around the city of Saint-Quentin, a once prosperous textile producing area in northern France). In the first round it seemed that the Republican Assembly member Julien Dive, on 35.7%, was in grave danger of losing to the RN candidate who polled 47.1% – especially because a Reconquête candidate had stood and his 1.2% might have been assumed to go to RN. Yet in fact Dive (part of the Republican faction that had rejected their former leader Ciotti’s advice and opposed alliance with Le Pen), won second round backing from an odd assortment of far leftists with whom he has nothing in common, and defeated the RN, 50.6% to 49.4%.
  • Allier, 1st constituency (based around the central French town of Moulins, most famous as the childhood home of French fashion legend Coco Chanel). This was another first round result where an incumbent – this time a Communist, Yannick Monnet, seemed in danger of losing to the RN. Monnet polled 28.8% in the first round, to the RN candidate’s 38.6%. However, in the second round an odd assortment of conservatives and centrists rallied behind the Communist, so he defeated the RN by 50.6% to 49.4%.
  • Alpes-Maritimes, 7th constituency (includes the city of Antibes on the French Riviera, in the south-east corner of France). Incumbent Assembly member Éric Pauget was part of the Republican faction that rejected the advice of their leader Éric Ciotti, who represents a nearby constituency, and ousted Ciotti from the Republican leadership after he recommended alliance with Le Pen. In the first round it seemed that this stance had cost Pauget his seat: he polled 24.9% behind the RN candidate’s 36.3%. Note also that this is an area where Reconquête would once have expected to be strong, but collapsed to 1.4%. Yet in the second round various leftists and centrists rallied behind Pauget, and he defeated the RN by a very comfortable margin: 58.7% to 41.3%.
  • Charente-Maritime, 3rd constituency (south of the city of La Rochelle, on the central west coast of France). The Macronist Assembly member Jean-Philippe Ardouin was decisively defeated in the first round, with an RN candidate in first place on 40.8%. But in a second round run-off against a Socialist allied to the far-left ‘Popular Front’, the RN candidate lost by just 63 votes, 50.1% to 49.9%.
  • Paris, 2nd and 12th constituencies. These form the 7th arrondissement, long known as the most affluent area of the French capital, but the Ciotti faction of the Republicans failed to carry the haute bourgeoisie with them into their alliance with Le Pen. In the first round, an RN candidate polled 11% in the 2nd, and a pro-RN Republican candidate 14.4% in the 12th (where the old Republican vote split almost evenly between pro- and anti- Le Pen factions). The outcome was that the second round contests in this ultra-affluent district were between Macronist and leftist ‘Popular Front’ candidates – in the 12th the latter was a Communist (!) – with the Macronist of course winning in each case.
  • Var, 1st constituency (based around the port and naval base of Toulon, on the Mediterranean coast). The Macronist Assembly member Yannick Chevenard seemed to be in trouble on the first round, polling 31.4%, behind the RN candidate’s 42.3%, with just 2.6% having gone to Reconquête. It seemed unlikely that Chevenard would have been able to rely on second preferences from the ultra-left Popular Front candidate from La France Insoumise (led by Macron’s fiercest enemy Jean-Luc Mélenchon), but in the event that’s what happened. With the help of the far left, the Macronist defeated Le Pen’s candidate, 52.9% to 47.1%.

There are some regions of France that have become undoubted strongholds for the RN. For example, they hold all six seats in the Gard department (in the southern region of Occitania); and ten of the twelve seats in the very different region Pas-de-Calais, where Marine Le Pen’s appeal to French workers has entrenched her support.

In the new Assembly, the first task for Marine Le Pen will be to maintain party discipline, as she waits for the inevitable splintering of the nascent leftist-centrist-Green coalition.

But the second task will be much harder. Should she maintain her pro-worker, traditionally French ‘big state’, stance while hardening her position on racial or semi-racial questions – in effect giving up hope of extending her appeal to affluent voters, and choosing instead to solidify the RN’s base and appeal to the disillusioned third of the French electorate who abstained in both rounds this year?

Or should she try to trim towards the middle class, toning down anti-immigration rhetoric still further, expelling the remaining traditional nationalists from her party, and becoming more like an Anglo-American conservative?

H&D readers will be unsurprised to learn that we would lean heavily towards the former option. We shall soon know which course Marine Le Pen has chosen.

Farage shows his true colours: a spiv and a traitor

During the past 48 hours Nigel Farage has shown why no true nationalist should support Reform UK.

Regular readers will know that we were already disgusted by Farage’s blatant betrayal of Traditional Unionist Voice, the party with which Farage’s Reform UK struck an electoral pact at the start of this year’s General Election campaign, only to see Farage unilaterally tear up the deal within weeks.

Reform UK went on to betray one candidate after another, throwing them under a bus at the slightest hint of anti-woke opinions, and in effect kneeling – BLM-style – in obeisance to ‘anti-racist’ lobby groups.

Yesterday one of the party’s major donors addressed Reform UK’s largest rally of the campaign. Zia Yusuf – a former executive director of Goldman Sachs, whose parents came to the UK from Sri Lanka in the 1980s – is the most public face of Farage’s multiracialism.

Another facet of Farage’s City spiv values – revealing that Reform UK is a true Goldman Sachs party, not a nationalist party – was his response this morning to the success of Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (Rassemblement National – RN).

Now, let’s be absolutely clear. Le Pen’s movement is not racial nationalist. Even in its previous incarnation as the Front National, under Marine’s father Jean-Marie Le Pen, this was a multiracialist party. I twice attended the FN’s main rally in Paris, where Jean-Marie Le Pen was introduced by a half-African singer.

The entire tradition of French nationalism has always contained a stronger element of multiracialism than our equivalent traditions in the UK. The FN (and to a lesser extent the RN) were always ‘broad church’ parties: they combined Pétainists and Gaullists; racial nationalists and non-Whites; Catholics and pagans. That looks strange to a British nationalist, but that’s how they have always been.

Whereas many H&D readers would criticise Le Pen for not being sufficiently pro-White, Farage criticises her from the opposite angle! He showed his true colours long ago when he said that Le Pen’s movement’s “roots were deep in Vichy” and that “anti-semitism was embedded in its DNA”.

This morning he went further, choosing this moment to denounce Le Pen’s party and proclaim that he preferred the approach of her ‘centrist’ rival Emmanuel Macron.

Farage went so far as to say that a victory for Le Pen’s party would be a “disaster” for France. In effect Farage’s Goldman Sachs party is a natural ally of Macron’s Rothschild party.

The Le Pen dynasty is reunited in 2024 – but Nigel Farage regards their entire political tradition as rooted “deep in Vichy” and with “anti-semitism embedded in its DNA”.

The one difference is that Farage wobbles all over the place when he is asked about Ukraine and Russia.

As we have previously exposed, Farage has a long history of making some token reference to Putin being a dictator, but then effectively spreading softcore Putinist propaganda, before flipping back to ‘cover’ himself by making some meaningless anti-Putin statement.

He has continued this policy during the past fortnight. It’s difficult to say whether this reflects Farage’s lack of formal education – he went straight from school to become a City spiv – or whether there is a more sinister agenda at work.

The one certainty is that Farage’s response to Le Pen does not reflect any ‘responsible’ attitude on his part to fiscal matters. Reform UK’s manifesto is by far the most irresponsible document of the entire election campaign, making a string of impossible, uncosted pledges.

Farage’s underlying values, however, remain those of a City spiv. He has absolutely no interest in working people. While we can criticise Marine Le Pen for many things – multiracialism, Zionism, abandonment of some French nationalist traditions, betrayal of her comrades – we must admit that she has aligned the RN strongly with the interests of French workers who have consistently been betrayed by the political and financial ‘elite’.

Farage and Reform UK are the opposite. They stand for crony capitalism, not British workers – and this is the main reason why their immigration policy would simply continue the Great Replacement, which serves the interests of global capitalism.

H&D readers should avoid Reform UK like the plague.

This week’s election will signal the death of the Conservative Party, but Reform UK represents no improvement, and if anything serves to discredit the broader nationalist cause.

We are in a time of transition, but the positive development is that a small number of genuine patriots are fighting for a real anti-immigration policy. These are the candidates of the British Democrats and English Democrats, plus independent candidates in some constituencies such as Dr Andrew Emerson in Chichester and Joe Owens in Liverpool Wavertree.

Of course these are only ripples of resistance compared to the tidal wave that is crashing down on the French political establishment. But we have something to build on, in the new political era that will dawn on Friday.

The message is simple: reject Farage, and start building a radical alternative above the ruins of the old order.

French voters’ revolt against multiculturalism takes Le Pen’s party to brink of power

Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) has made huge gains in the first round of the French parliamentary elections.

While it is obvious that there has been a tremendous swing in favour of the RN (and against ‘centrist’ President Emmanuel Macron), the two-round system used in France means that anti-RN voters will again have the opportunity to strike deals in next Sunday’s decisive second round and block nationalist victories.

The ‘right-wing’ of the conservative Republicans (a party seemingly in terminal decline) had already struck a deal with Le Pen by which they were allowed a free run in more affluent areas, including parts of central Paris.

However, it’s difficult to imagine that these people would be reliable allies of an RN government, since their economic ideas are at the opposite pole to Le Pen’s. (It’s already clear that Le Pen herself will concentrate on campaigning to succeed Macron eventually as President: the Prime Minister of any potential RN government would be her young colleague and party chairman, Jordan Bardella.)

Complete results from the first round will not be available until tomorrow, but the two most reliable projections give the RN 33% or 33.5%; the broad left-wing ‘popular front’ 28.5%; Macron’s ‘centrists’ 22%; and the Republicans around 10%.

Éric Zemmour, the Jewish journalist lionised until two years ago as the future of post-Le Pen French nationalism, is politically dead after yesterday’s results.

One of the few certainties is that Éric Zemmour’s party Reconquête, which until early 2022 seemed poised to overtake the RN as the main force in French anti-immigration / nationalist politics, has been destroyed, polling only about 0.5%.

Zemmour expelled the majority of his own MEPs (including Le Pen’s niece Marion Maréchal) in a row over whether to negotiate with the RN. His party now seems to consist only of himself, his girlfriend Sarah Knafo, and a tiny faction of Putinists and irreconcilable enemies of Le Pen.

H&D will examine the French results and the emerging transformation of European nationalism in further analyses on this website (once detailed results are available), and in the next edition of our magazine.

French candidate suspended after his vile anti-Faurisson tweet is mistaken for ‘anti-semitism’!

Joseph Martin, suspended by the RN for ‘anti-semitism’, was in fact an ‘anti-fascist’!

The hysteria of Holocaustianity – otherwise known as ‘Shoah business’ – has claimed a new victim: and this time, with rich irony, it’s an ‘anti-fascist’ who has fallen victim to ‘friendly fire’.

Joseph Martin, a parliamentary candidate for Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) in the current elections for the French National Assembly, was suspended by his party yesterday after a confected scandal over a supposedly satirical tweet.

Martin – who was born in Spain as José Martinez Lopez, but came to France as a child – was standing for the RN in an area of Brittany.

The communist newspaper Libération complained about a tweet that Martin posted in October 2018 that (when read out of contact) appeared to mock ‘Holocaust’ victims.

In fact Martin had intended his tweet (posted more than five and a half years ago and hurriedly deleted yesterday) as a vile ‘satirical’ attack on the revisionist scholar Robert Faurisson, who had just died at the instant of returning home from a conference in London organised by H&D‘s assistant editor Peter Rushton.

With their typical urgent insistence on genuflecting to the Jewish lobby, Marine Le Pen’s party has censured and expelled an ‘anti-fascist’ – when they thought they were censuring and expelling an ‘anti-semite’!

No doubt somewhere, the spirit of Robert Faurisson is enjoying this absurd spectacle.

Is Le Pen on verge of power?

Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron before their presidential debate in 2022: is it now possible that Macron might have to share power with a Prime Minister nominated by Le Pen?!?

It’s difficult to keep up with rapid developments in French politics this week.

After predictable success in last weekend’s Euro-election for Marine Le Pen’s anti-immigration party National Rally (RN), France’s ‘centrist’ president Emmanuel Macron called a snap parliamentary election.

British readers need to understand that the French constitution is halfway between ours and the American system. As in the USA, the President is elected separately from the Assembly, and it’s not uncommon for a President to have to ‘cohabit’ with a Prime Minister and a majority group in the Assembly who belong to a rival party or parties.

However, unlike a US President who has no choice but to cope with whatever Congress gets elected (aside from his right to veto legislation), a French President can (like a UK Prime Minister, though the latter theoretically requires the King’s permission) dissolve the Assembly and call fresh elections. Whatever happens, the President rather than the Prime Minister retains ultimate control over certain policy areas, such as defence and foreign policy, including control of nuclear weapons.

Marion Maréchal with her grandfather, FN founder Jean-Marie Le Pen. Early indications are that the 2024 election campaign might see the Le Pen dynasty reunified, though Jean-Marie Le Pen will be 96 next month and is now too frail to take an active role in politics.

Macron was landed in 2022 with an Assembly that is unmanageable, due to large blocs from the ultra-left NUPES alliance as well as Le Pen’s RN.

His decision to dissolve the Assembly despite Le Pen’s recent successes and opinion poll leads, isn’t as crazy as it seems.

For one thing, Macron has little to lose. He couldn’t govern effectively via the old Assembly, so he might as well ‘go for broke’ and risk an Assembly dominated by the ‘far right’.

A further consideration is that the far left might now be fragmenting. For several years the pre-eminent leftist leader has been Jean-Luc Mélenchon, but a combination of the old socialist’s authoritarian leadership style and his Putinist foreign policy is leading rival leftists and greens to rebel against him.

Due to the two-round electoral system and the consequent pressure for horse-trading between factions, it’s not at all certain what type of left-wing slates will be agreed. However it’s already fairly obvious that there will be a shift on the left away from Mélenchon’s irreconcilable stance, towards people and policies that might conceivably favour coalition with pro-Macron forces.

Meanwhile the mainstream right has fallen apart. Éric Ciotti, leader of the ‘centre-right’ Republicans, has split from other leading figures in his own party by advocating a deal with Le Pen. As Macron was quick to point out, any such deal seems impractical where economic policy is concerned. The Republicans’ attitude to tax and government spending ought to be far closer to Macron than to Le Pen, because the RN has moved sharply to the ‘left’ in such areas and defends the old-fashioned French ‘big state’, whereas the Republicans in recent years have shifted away from the Gaullist legacy and become more like Anglo-American fiscal conservatives.

The question as ever is – how far will French middle-class voters be prepared to accept a hit to their bank balances (including the necessity to pay higher wages to French workers as well as funding the welfare state) in return for a sincere anti-immigration policy and a tougher stance on law and order?

Marine Le Pen surrounded by non-White supporters of her RN party

Which brings us to Le Pen herself, and rival forces on the ‘far right’.

Many H&D readers will have been appalled by Le Pen’s multiracial approach. Yes, she favours much stricter immigration controls – but she is far from being a racial nationalist. We must recognise that the traditions of the French right are very different from ours. Even under the RN’s previous incarnation – the Front National led by Marine’s father Jean-Marie Le Pen – the party accepted non-White members, and in recent years the RN has gone down this route with added enthusiasm.

A further factor has been Marine Le Pen’s obsessive genuflection to Israel, which is shared by most of today’s mainstream European ‘far right’.

Nevertheless, we have to recognise that a government headed by Le Pen’s young ally Jordan Bardella (the RN’s nominee for Prime Minister) would in some ways be a giant step forward, bringing anti-immigration politics not only into the mainstream but into government.

It would raise expectations among French voters and among their fellow Europeans, and (if radical movements organise themselves seriously) can be a first step towards a more genuinely racial nationalist approach: a Europe for Europeans.

Moreover, Le Pen has in recent weeks taken one very important step to clean up European nationalism. She has taken a firm stand against the Putinist corruption that infests nationalist circles throughout the West. By expelling her German counterparts AfD from the Identity and Democracy group that her party dominates in the European Parliament, she has drawn a clear line indicating that Putinism is intrinsically anti-European and unacceptable.

Éric Zemmour, the Kremlin’s favourite French politician and Marine Le Pen’s rival for leadership of the ‘far right’, has seen his Reconquête party collapse within the first few days of the election campaign.

Within days of the Assembly election being called, the Putinist wing of French nationalism – the Reconquête party led by Jewish journalist Éric Zemmour – collapsed. Zemmour’s effective deputy Marion Maréchal (who happens to be Marine Le Pen’s niece but has long been at odds with her aunt) was open to the idea of an electoral pact between the RN and Reconquête to maximise the right’s chances of entering government.

Zemmour was horrified. He swiftly expelled Ms Maréchal from his party, calling her a traitor. This extreme reaction perhaps owed something to Zemmour’s partner Sarah Knafo (also Jewish), who like Ms Maréchal is a newly elected MEP and who undoubtedly exerts great influence over the party leader.

With the election campaign only a few days old we have seen two parties collapse: Reconquête and the centre-right Republicans. For equal and opposite reasons both Macron and Marine Le Pen will be satisfied with the way things have gone so far.

It promises to be one of the most interesting elections in European history, and perhaps a turning point for our movement (broadly defined).

Vincent Reynouard faces extradition with courage and confidence in the future of revisionism

The French revisionist scholar Vincent Reynouard, who has been held in Edinburgh prison since his arrest in November 2022, will be extradited to France next week after it became clear that there was no further avenue of appeal. (The photo above shows the late Richard Edmonds presenting Vincent with the Robert Faurisson International Prize 2020.)

As we reported a few days ago, Scotland’s most senior judge rejected Vincent’s appeal after a hearing at Edinburgh’s High Court of Justiciary. Although Scotland remains part of the United Kingdom, the UK Supreme Court in London has no jurisdiction in his case.

Vincent Reynouard issued a statement at his blog yesterday. (English translation below)

The news of my upcoming extradition having spread, correspondents wrote to me to tell me that I must be disappointed and undoubtedly demoralised. I thank them and reassure them: I am neither.

When, on the evening of January 26th, a fellow inmate informed me that Scottish television had announced the High Court’s decision, I was making a watercolour for the widow of the revisionist Carlos Porter. After asking my informant a few questions, I quietly got back to work.

Disappointment and demoralisation are consequences of our personal desires. Now, personally, I don’t want anything. I fulfil my mission by spreading revisionism. When I physically die, I will be rewarded for it.

For their part, do my contemporaries deserve the truth? If so, then I will see my work bear fruit. Otherwise, the seeds sown will germinate after my death, or perhaps never. I can’t do anything about it; It’s God’s business, not mine.

Here in Edinburgh Prison, my life has not changed one bit. In the calm of my cell, I write, I read, I draw and I meditate. Far from appearing as a fearsome spectre, the upcoming extradition presents itself as a simple door opening onto the future, a continuation which, if the ordeals are experienced positively, will prove enriching. Hence my serenity.

Last thing: according to the BBC, the High Court magistrates stressed that in the current context, all my videos were “grossly offensive” to all citizens of a modern society. Proof of the importance of World War II revisionism: it leaves no one indifferent. I had noted this for a long time. For revisionism, it is a great victory. So why would I be disappointed or demoralized?

Thank you to you who support me.

Vincent Reynouard

Both at H&D and at our assistant editor’s Real History Blog, we shall continue to report on Vincent’s case, and on the broader revisionist struggle. It appears that the UK is to be the new frontline for attempts to criminalise revisionism. If so, our enemies should be warned that there will be no surrender.

Mossad’s investment in the Le Pen dynasty finally paying off?

Roger Auque, Mossad agent and father of Marion Maréchal

Last week Marine Le Pen and Jordan Bardella (the president of her Rassemblement National party) gave unequivocal support to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Le Pen’s niece Marion Maréchal, who next year will lead the European parliamentary election slate of a rival nationalist party Reconquête!) is an even more staunch and longstanding Zionist, saying that “France must stand unambiguously alongside Israel in this new ordeal.”

Marion Maréchal as a guest at the Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, in 2018

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised, since Marion Maréchal’s real father Roger Auque was an agent of the Israeli intelligence service Mossad.

In a new article at the Real History blog, H&D‘s Peter Rushton examines the strange connections between the Le Pen dynasty and Mossad.

Dominique Venner – a hero of the True Europe

Ten years ago – on 21st May 2013 – a great French racial nationalist, Dominique Venner, committed suicide in dramatic circumstances at the Cathedral of Notre Dame.

Venner’s father had been part of Jacques Doriot’s pre-war nationalist party. He was himself politically active from the mid-1950s until his death, as one of the leading figures in an intellectual movement known as the Nouvelle Droite, together with Alain de Benoist, Pierre Krebs, and the late Guillaume Faye. The ND’s leaders later came to disagree with each other on some fundamental issues, but for the past sixty years their work has been among the highest quality contributions to European resistance.

Usually, racial nationalists should disapprove of pessimism, and especially suicide, since our racial nationalist ideology is a celebration of life and optimism.

Of course, some leading European nationalists have killed themselves in exceptional situations, but in today’s world we should not usually accept that suicide is a positive political option.

But Venner was 78 and very seriously ill. He wanted to make a final political gesture while he was able to do so.

Dominique Venner died as he had lived – as a hero of the True Europe.

French nationalists forge ahead: Macron’s project in crisis

‘Centrist’ French President Emmanuel Macron – the ultimate Rothschild / Goldman Sachs politician – was lionised by international liberal journalists when he defeated nationalist candidate Marine Le Pen in 2017 (and to a lesser extent when he won re-election last year).

But the wheels have now come off Macron’s globalist project, and French nationalists once again seem poised for power.

The immediate crisis is due to Macron’s proposals to raise the pension age, as part of a package of reforms designed to shift social and economic policies away from the traditional French ‘big state’ towards a more Anglo-American, privatised, ‘business friendly’ model. Having failed to win a majority at last year’s parliamentary elections, Macron has opted to bypass the National Assembly and impose his new policy by presidential decree. This approach – reminiscent of the most chaotic years of Germany’s Weimar Republic – has understandably inflamed violent street protests.

The Le Pen dynasty whose family drama has dominated French nationalism for decades. (above left to right) Jean-Marie Le Pen, founder of the Front National, now 94 years old and hospitalised after a heart attack last weekend; his granddaughter Marion Maréchal, now associated with the dissident nationalist party Reconquête; and his daughter Marine Le Pen, leader of the rebranded FN now known as Rassemblement National.

Both the traditional left and Marine Le Pen’s Rassemblement National have strongly resisted these moves and present themselves as champions of French workers. Le Pen has for more than a decade succeeded in realigning her party (founded as the Front National by her father Jean-Marie Le Pen) towards what some would regard as more ‘left-wing’ economic policies.

Meanwhile Le Pen’s rival Éric Zemmour is pitching for a very different vote. His party Reconquête is more hardline on racial questions and less squeamish than Le Pen on issues related to French history, such as the legacy of Marshal Philippe Pétain’s wartime government at Vichy. Perhaps because Zemmour is Jewish, he has an ‘alibi’ that allows him to be relatively frank about Second World War history and more tolerant of semi-revisionist positions, from which Le Pen (unlike her father) is desperate to dissociate herself.

More directly relevant to most French voters, however, is Zemmour’s far more conservative stance on economic questions, where Reconquête is much closer to the Anglo-American mainstream right and pitches for middle-class voters, competing with the declining French conservative party (now rebranded as ‘Republicans’). Zemmour’s allies present his party as the only real voice of the ‘right’ in French politics.

In the most recent opinion polls, Zemmour is backed by 6-7% of the electorate (about the same as his 7.1% at last April’s presidential election), while Le Pen would lead a hypothetical first round with 30-33%, a significant advance on her 23.2% last year. Le Pen is well ahead of Macron’s likely successors as ‘centrist’ candidate, who would take 23-24% in the first round and compete with the far-left for the privilege of facing Le Pen in a second round run-off. (Macron himself is constitutionally barred from standing for a third term.)

In a legislative election, Le Pen’s RN would compete with the far-left, polling roughly 26% each, ahead of the President’s party on 22%. An alliance of the Republicans and other conservative parties is presently polling only 10-11%; while Reconquête polls slightly under 5%, as do dissident elements of the once-mighty Socialist Party who refuse to ally with the far-left. This is an obvious recipe for continued stalemate in the National Assembly, even if another ‘centrist’ President succeeded Macron.

Le Pen’s rival Éric Zemmour

Zemmour will turn 65 in August, and would be almost 69 at the next scheduled presidential election in 2027. The main far-left leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon is seven years older than Zemmour, and even Marine Le Pen (a decade younger than Zemmour) is seen by some French nationalists as only having one more credible shot at the presidency.

Given the strange dynastic pattern of French nationalism, the future of the movement might still belong to Marine’s niece Marion Maréchal, who is allied to Zemmour. To be a credible leader and future presidential candidate, Maréchal will have to transcend bitter rivalries (including a personal split with her aunt); bridge the gap between the RN’s economic interventionism and Reconquête’s pro-capitalist stance; continue to present racially conscious nationalism as serious and electable; and escape the taint of Putinism that caused serious damage to Zemmour’s campaign last year.

This might seem a tough proposition, but the crises and contradictions facing ‘centrist’, liberal and leftist strands in French politics are even more intractable.

Despite many obvious obstacles, the future of French politics belongs to nationalism. Jean-Marie Le Pen changed European politics when he built the Front National into a serious electoral force during the 1980s: in their different ways, his daughter and granddaughter have a genuine chance of entering the Elysée Palace as President of France.

Strong third-place for Marine Le Pen’s party in French by-election

Jean-Marc Garnier again finished a close third as RN candidate in the traditionally left-wing Ariège constituency.

Marine Le Pen’s Rassemblement National did well in Sunday’s by-election for one of the two seats in the National Assembly allocated to the department de l’Ariège, which is a very beautiful but rather poor and traditionally left-wing area of southern France, famous in history as the centre of the Cathar or Albigensian heresy.

The by-election was caused by irregularities in the conduct of the general election in this constituency.  The far-left candidate Bénédicte Taurine was elected at last year’s general election but has been forced to recontest the seat after the poll was quashed by the Constitutional Court. Ms Taurine represents a broad alliance of ultra-left groups which calls itself La France Insoumise (‘France Unbowed’), a title which reflects the oddly patriotic stance of French socialists who argue that economic liberalism (promoted by President Emmanuel Macron) is a betrayal of French traditions.

The RN’s vote went up by a quarter from 20% to 25% but that was not quite good enough to take RN candidate Jean-Marc Garnier into next Sunday’s second round, where the far-left’s Ms Taurine (whose first round vote slipped slightly from 33.1% to 31.2%) will run-off against a Socialist Party dissident, Martine Froger (whose vote rose from 20.0% to 26.4%, no doubt partly thanks to having her party’s name on the ballot paper this time).

François-Xavier Jossinet and the Reconquête party presented themselves as “the real Right”.

The strange situation is that last year the Le Pen candidate only missed out on the run-off by eight votes, but in this week’s by-election they were 155 votes short despite a substantial increase in their own backing. Rival nationalist party Reconquête (led by Éric Zemmour) polled 2.8% (down from 3.3% last year), but while in theory this means that a combined nationalist vote would have taken second rather than third place, no-one can be sure that the RN could have relied on Reconquête voters’ backing.

Reconquête continues to be an annoyance to Marine Le Pen. It would however be simplistic to think that the two parties’ electorates are simply interchangeable. It is noteworthy that MLP’s niece Marion Maréchal (whose credibility has been badly damaged by Reconquête‘s electoral failure, but who is still seen as the eventual successor to Zemmour and perhaps as the eventual leader of French nationalism) has severely criticised the RN for not taking steps against a RN deputy who opened a mega-mosque in his constituency funded by the Turkish government. (Le Pen did eventually condemn the deputy concerned for this ‘personal initiative’.)

At the same time Maréchal and Zemmour have more or less endorsed President Macron’s view that raising the retirement age is inevitable given the burden of pension payments on the public purse.

So, rather in contrast to the way things have usually been in the UK’s nationalist movement (broad and narrow), the French movement’s middle class supporters take a harder line on race than its working class base (as well as forming a much larger proportion of the movement’s electoral base than they do here).

Macron’s candidate polled only 10.7% (down from 20.0% last year, reflecting the challenge to the president’s authority during the pensions crisis), and as in last year’s election there was no ‘centre-right’ candidate.

The split in the nationalist vote was unfortunate, but hatred between the Socialists and the far-left will be much increased by the bitter run-off on April 2nd, regardless of who wins!

Disillusionment with the entire French political system no doubt contributed to a very low turnout of only 39.6% in the by-election’s first round, down from 56.4% last year, despite a very wide range of candidates to choose from, comprising two rival nationalists, a Trotskyist who polled 2%, plus a local independent with 2.2%, and a Macronist, as well as the two rival left-wingers who will contest the run-off.

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