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articles > Economy/Politics events

David Cameron and Manuel Valls

Thank you Andy Street for rallying the French

By Marie Decreme

"The remarks I made were supposed to be light-hearted views, and tongue in cheek. On reflection I clearly went too far. I apologise unreservedly”, Andy Street said, a few hours after his critical comments about the situation of France.  Apology accepted, Mr Street: thanks to you, the French people stood up to defend their country against your provocative statements… and it is great to finally see the glass half-full!

The French were offended by the John Lewis boss’s negative claims; they decided to fight back, to show that France was not “hopeless, sclerotic and downbeat” as Andy Street had suggested. No, France is not “finished”. It appears that the French needed a new dose of French bashing to shake themselves up and realise that everything is not doom and gloom about their country. We felt a wave of optimism, a surge of patriotism: France has everything it takes to succeed, and it has to be told. 

The opération seduction is now taken over by Manuel Valls. The French Prime Minister was on a mission in London on 6 October: he was trying to restore France’s image and convince the British of the economic reforms launched by the Government.

But the British are not the only ones that needed to be convinced… The French showed they had faith in their country. That does not mean they trust their leaders; Francois Hollande and the Government’s popularity are still at an all-time low. 


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