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From DSK to Weinstein, Progress in the Fight for Women’s Rights

The Weinstein scandal has sparked a storm of reactions in both France and the United States, but the DSK scandal six years ago received a far more lukewarm response. Is French society more hypocritical or more tolerant than American society when it comes to sexual predators? When it was revealed in 2011 — by the Americans — that Dominique Strauss-Khan...

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Macron-Apple, a Meeting of Leaders

The French president met with the CEO of Apple in Paris on October 6. Should we see this as a business meeting, or an encounter between two heads of state? French journalist Jean-Jacques Servan-Schreiber published The American Challenge in 1967, which went on to be a best-seller both in France and the U.S.A. The writer observed in his work that...

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Stop the massacre!

The recent massacre in Las Vegas is incomprehensible from a French point of view. How is it possible for a citizen to amass such an arsenal of weaponry? It’s high time that the U.S. Congress acts. There is a direct link between the number of firearms in circulation in a country and the number of people killed by these weapons,...

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Strange Alabama

Roy Moore won the Republican primary in Alabama on Tuesday, September 26, putting him in front for the race to the Senate. This pious, controversial figure represents an image of rural America where religion and politics intertwine. Roy Moore was relieved of his position as chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court in 2003 for refusing to remove a monument...

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The Macron-Trump Presidential Clash

The presidents of France and America stood before the United Nations General Assembly for the very first time, outlining opposing positions on every detail. While Trump promised the total annihilation of Iran, North Korea, and even Venezuela, Macron presented as a standard-bearer for democracy. The POTUS extolled the virtues of strength and nationalism, whereas the French president sang the praises...

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Lessons from Noah’s Ark

Who or what is responsible for the hurricanes Harvey and Irma that recently devastated the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico. Global warming? Urbanization? Or perhaps Nature itself? Natural disasters were equated to some divine punishment until the 18th century — a theory that dates back to the Flood. After destroying land and sea, God personally promised Noah to never...

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Who Actually Wants the Olympics?

It’s decided: Paris will host the 2024 Olympic Games. But this adventure is borne more by politics than sport, and we could be forgiven for asking if it is really necessary. And just how much will this mass entertainment cost the taxpayer? Paris has beaten Los Angeles in the race to host the 2024 Olympic Games. But where are the...

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A Lesson From iPhones

Of their trip to Paris, most people choose to remember a croissant that they ate at a café, the view from the top floor of the Eiffel Tower or Mona Lisa's smile at the Louvre. Our columnist Adam Gopnik prefered to remember the day he lost his phone! Not long ago I got to spend a couple of days in...

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Notre-Dame of America

The most famous cathedral in France is appealing to American patrons in an effort to find funding for its estimated 179 million dollars of renovation work. The pearl of French gothic art has been a cornerstone of the country’s national history since 1163, but is now falling into ruin. Its gargoyles are crumbling, and its saints’ faces are growing smooth...

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Politically Correct Restrooms

Scarred by the memory of slavery, the United States is attacking all forms of discrimination... including in restrooms! Americans maintain an open relationship with the body and its functions that we in Europe do not have: We prefer discretion and they, exhibition. During my first visit to the United States in 1962, when Greyhound buses allowed me to crisscross the...

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Tearing Down the Statues

Embarrassing symbols of American history are being torn down one by one; after removing Confederate flags in the past, the focus has now been turned to statues. A commission in New York has been tasked with identifying exactly which symbols are to be confiscated, starting with the name “Philippe Pétain” engraved on Broadway. French people will hardly be surprised by...

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The Ultra-White President Trump

Many celebrated the election of Donald Trump last November as the “revenge of the white man.” This vengeful sentiment continues today, and is more toxic than ever. A certain category of Americans never truly accepted Barack Obama’s presidential victory, nor the current changes that have been shaping U.S. society since the 1960s. Feminism, ethnic diversity, priority for minorities in universities...

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Deserving Tourists

Terrorist attacks have not damaged France’s appeal for travelers, and the country remains the world’s leading tourist destination. The current obstacles are above all the fault of the French government. Despite the recent terrorist attacks (and lunatics wandering around the foot of the Eiffel Tower holding knives) France’s appeal has not suffered any long-term damage. The country is still the...

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France, the New World Leader (in Soft Power)

A symbolic rankings table published by a British public relations firm has revealed that France has supposedly become the world’s leading “soft power,” overtaking the United States. But what does it mean? “Soft power” is a recent term popularized in the 1990s by U.S. academic Joseph Nye. His theory opposed American military inventions and overly offensive positions by promoting the...

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France Needs an Innovation Revolution

Start-up incubators like Station F, which opened recently in Paris, are a sign of progress, but France needs radical change. Silicon Valley-based French-American innovator Navi Radjou lists three steps to foster innovation in France. With Emmanuel Macron as president and his party winning a decisive majority in recent parliamentary elections, France’s ailing economy may finally receive a shot in the arm....

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Trump Makes Merry in Paris

Donald Trump was Emmanuel Macron’s guest of honor at the July 14 celebrations in Paris, and seems to have forgotten the advice of his friend “Jim.” The American president has fallen back in love with France. Advantage: Macron. Macron hooked a big fish — Donald Trump — by using the bait that works best on the U.S. president: Flattery and...

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Revolution as Play in France

On July 14, Americans celebrate Bastille Day. On this day, the French celebrate more than their National Day or the anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille: They celebrate the everlasting spirit of the 1789 Revolution. “The French are better at fighting revolutions than making reforms”, wrote Alexis de Tocqueville in his notes in 1848. As a Deputy of the Manche...

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Scott Pruitt’s Crusade Against Ecology

The United States’ withdrawal from the Paris Agreement on climate change is the only tangible decision made by the Trump government in its five months of existence. The American president himself hesitated at length, before leaving it up to a militant, committed member of his staff: A certain Scott Pruitt, the ecologists’ enemy number one. In this baroque, incompetent administration,...

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The Jeff Koons Affair

American sculptor Jeff Koons gifted one of his creations to the city of Paris last November. But the gaudy work inspired by the Statue of Liberty is still a point of contention. The artist’s large-scale sculpture representing a bouquet of tulips is supposed to be pay homage to the victims of the Paris Attacks in 2015. The project is supported...

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France Discovers Vetting

Both the French and American presidents have the power to appoint people of their choosing to thousands of public sector positions, starting with their cabinet. The difference in France, however, is that no vetting of their background is required. Presidential nominations are not subject to any checks in France, whereas the equivalent appointments in the United States are generally preceded by...

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A Short Honeymoon

La majorité présidentielle contrôle désormais 65% de l’Assemblée nationale française. Cette victoire retentissante, toutefois, sera de courte durée : Emmanuel Macron aura fort à faire à la rentrée. Macron dispose des pleins pouvoirs. Ce qui, en réalité, lui donne seulement quelques mois de liberté pour accomplir la réforme essentielle, celle du droit du travail, entamée en 2016. A la rentrée, il...