Release List Reviews Shop Join News DVD Giveaways Video Games Advertise
DVD Reviews | Theatrical Reviews | Adult DVD Reviews | Video Game Reviews | Price Search Buy Stuff Here
DVD Talk
DVD Reviews DVD Talk Headlines HD Reviews


Add to My Yahoo! - RSS 2.0 - RSS 2.0 - DVD Talk Podcast RSS -


Go Back   DVD Talk Forum > General Discussions > Other Talk > Religion, Politics and World Events

Religion, Politics and World Events They make great dinner conversation, don't you think? plus Political Film

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 05-15-06, 11:58 PM   #1
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,429
Chirac scandal?

We don't usually hear that much about foreign scandals but I have been hearing bits of this over the years. There seems to be a scandal going on (made up/covered up?) in France right now at the highest levels (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...51400881.html). Is there any substance to this or is it just typical political rumor mongering?

Quote:
Walker's World: The high price of French scandals
By Martin Walker
UPI Editor
Published May 11, 2006

PARIS -- The scandals surrounding French President Jacques Chirac offer the most dramatic example of inflation in modern times. Six years ago, investigating magistrates probing allegations of bribe-taking while Chirac was mayor of Paris were focusing on claims that he had been handed a suitcase containing the equivalent of $300,000 in cash.

Now the allegation is that Chirac has a secret bank account in the Tokyo branch of the Sawa Bank of Japan that contains the equivalent of $50 million.

The source for this is a senior intelligence official, Gen. Philippe Rondot, a star of the secret world who masterminded the arrest of Carlos the Jackal, the noted terrorist of the 1970s, and negotiated the release of French hostages from Lebanon and Iraq.

Chirac has grandly dismissed these allegations, which feature prominently in the French media, and which relate to a much wider scandal that involves secret accounts in Luxembourg's Clearstream Bank, the bitter rivalry between Chirac's two leading heirs, Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin and Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, corruption in the defense industry and boardroom battles in the EADS corporation that makes the Airbus commercial jets.

"The Republic is not the dictatorship of rumors, the dictatorship of false accusations. The Republic is the law," Chirac declared, adding that he had every confidence in Prime Minister Villepin and had no intention of replacing him.

That remains to be seen. The Socialists, the leading opposition party in the National Assembly, have filed a motion of censure against the government for next week, and there is a slim but significant prospect that enough government supporters could abstain to make the vote on what the Socialists call "France's Watergate" into a very close thing.

Bear in mind that Chirac has never been cleared of the earlier allegations of bribe-taking while he was mayor of Paris. He managed to avoid trial by getting France's equivalent of the Supreme Court to rule, amid great controversy, that the president of the republic could not be expected to be distracted by criminal proceedings while in office. The prospect of the charges being formally filed once he steps down from the presidency had been a strong incentive for Chirac to remain in office, or at least to ensure that his successor as president be a good and loyal friend.

This latest scandal began 15 years ago, when France sold six frigates to the navy of Taiwan for a total sum of $2.3 billion, of which some 20 percent was said to be 'commissions,' and some of which was supposedly laundered through Clearstream, which the bank staunchly denies.

Two years ago, the magistrates doggedly pursuing the Taiwan investigation had a meeting with an old friend of Villepin named Jean-Louis Gergorin, who made some sensational allegations about leading politicians who had secret accounts at Clearstream, including Nicolas Sarkozy. Gergorin refused to go on the record, suggesting that some previous witnesses in the affair had died in mysterious circumstances. But within the week, the magistrates received a CD file that purported to contain the list of Clearstream's secret accounts.

Gergorin denies providing this, and the magistrates soon discovered that the list was faked. Gergorin, who had run the policy planning unit at France's Foreign Ministry, resigned Wednesday from his new job as vice president of the EADS defense and aerospace corporation, "in order to concentrate on my defense."

The affair became public last month when the magistrates searched the offices of the defense minister and of Gen. Rondot, evidently suspecting that the faked CD was part of a political plot to discredit Sarkozy, and that Gen. Rondot was mixed up in it. In Rondot's files, the magistrates found a memo of a meeting with the prime minister and Gergorin which read "Political stakes: Nicolas Sarkozy. Fixation with Sarkozy (re: conflict Chirac/Sarkozy)."

Sarkozy tried and failed to get his name cleared in a statement by Villepin, and the affair has worsened the already bitter rivalry between the two men, and has sent Villepin's approval ratings plunging down to below 30 percent; Chirac's are down to about the same level. By contrast, Sarkozy's approval ratings are above 50 percent.

The legal inquiries grind on, in the usual slow French way, and the main impact on the public seems to have been a widespread disgust with the way their ruling elite conducts its political feuds, along with a profound suspicion that corruption and money-grubbing reaches very high indeed in the French state.

The most likely beneficiaries of this scandal may not be the Socialists, who were in power at the time of the sale of the frigates and many of whose leaders are also named in the dubious CD, but the extreme-right Front National party, which has also benefited from growing concern over mass Muslim immigration after the countrywide riots by young Arabs last autumn.

The respected IFOP polling organization stunned France last month by reporting that 35 percent of French voters now thought that the Front National "enrich the political debate," and 34 percent think they are "close to the concerns of the French people." The Front's leader, Jean-Marie Le Pen, won almost 18 percent of the vote, his highest ever share, in the 2002 presidential elections, beating incumbent Socialist premier Lionel Jospin into third place.

Le Pen, a man once convicted of selling illegal tapes of Nazi marching songs and Hitler speeches, is elderly and ailing, but his movement is thriving, signing up new members at a rate of over 10,000 a week. If there is a serious prospect of his winning 35 percent of the vote, then his success in next year's presidential elections cannot altogether be ruled out, given the divisions among the moderate conservatives and the various factions of the Left.

One thing looks almost certain from next year's elections. Whoever wins the French presidency, whether Sarkozy or the attractive woman Socialist Segolene Royal or even Le Pen, it is unlikely to be a friend of Jacques Chirac. So whether or not there is a secret $50 million bank account in Tokyo in his name, France may finally find out the truth about the famous suitcase and about the man who has been their president for the past 11 years.

http://www.wpherald.com/storyview.ph...1-115003-2358r
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-06, 08:40 AM   #2
run1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Norway
Posts: 256
There's definitly something to all this. French politics are not the easiest to predict, but this certainly seems to derail Villepin's Presidential ambitions..... for a while at least
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-06, 11:12 AM   #3
Hospitaller
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 228
my guess is there is at the minimum a kernel of truth in these allegations. Chirac knows he has the sword of damocles hanging over his head just waiting for him to get out of office, so like the article suggests I think he is biding his time until the pieces are in place so he can avoid prosecution.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-06, 02:10 AM   #4
kvrdave
DVD Talk God
 
kvrdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 81,725
__________________
Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baronís cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. - C.S. Lewis
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-06, 03:55 PM   #5
Fokker's Feint
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Skull 1
Posts: 945
Quote:
Originally Posted by kvrdave


That pic just never gets old
__________________
"I haven't told anyone this yet, but during my drug-induced flu haze on Sunday morning, I fell asleep during ESPN's "Sports Reporters" and had a nightmare that Mitch Albom's ears were attacking me."

- Bill Simmons
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-07, 09:56 AM   #6
wishbone
DVD Talk Legend
 
wishbone's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 16,262
Quote:
Charges filed against former French president
Suspicions that people were given fake jobs while Chirac was Paris mayor
AP 11/21/2007

PARIS - A judge filed preliminary charges against former President Jacques Chirac on Wednesday in a probe of suspicions that people were given fake jobs while he was mayor of Paris, his lawyer said.

The judge placed Chirac under formal investigation for suspected embezzlement or misuse of public funds, the attorney, Jean Veil, said after the investigating magistrate questioned Chirac for nearly four hours.

The case is one of several hanging over Chirac, who had kept investigators at arm's length while he was president by using the immunity that comes with the post.

Under French law, preliminary charges mean the investigating judge has determined that there is strong evidence to suggest involvement in a crime. It gives the investigator time to pursue the probe before deciding whether to send the suspects for trial or drop the case.

Chirac became the 21st suspect to face preliminary charges in the probe. The investigation centers on whether Paris City Hall, under Chirac's tenure, was paying the salaries of people who in fact were not working for it.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21913501/


"La Corruption? Moi?! Mais non!!"
__________________
"Wishbone is spelled with an E not a 3..... *Be gone*" - Minor Threat
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-07, 11:13 AM   #7
kvrdave
DVD Talk God
 
kvrdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 81,725
Wow. That's pretty amazing.
__________________
Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baronís cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. - C.S. Lewis
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-07, 01:18 PM   #8
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,429
The tip of the iceberg.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-07, 04:38 PM   #9
bhk
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Right of Atilla The Hun
Posts: 19,749
http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlates...093890,00.html
Quote:
Preliminary Charges Filed Against Chirac

Wednesday November 21, 2007 2:01 PM


By PIERRE-ANTOINE SOUCHARD

Associated Press Writer

PARIS (AP) - A judge filed preliminary charges against former President Jacques Chirac on Wednesday in a probe of suspicions that people were given fake jobs while he was mayor of Paris, his lawyer said.

The judge placed Chirac under formal investigation for suspected embezzlement or misuse of public funds, the attorney, Jean Veil, said after the investigating magistrate questioned Chirac for nearly four hours.

The case is one of several hanging over Chirac, who had kept investigators at arm's length while he was president by using the immunity that comes with the post. He served as president from 1995 until May.

Under French law, preliminary charges mean the investigating judge has determined that there is strong evidence to suggest involvement in a crime. It gives the investigator time to pursue the probe before deciding whether to send the suspects for trial or drop the case......
Sacre Bleu, cordon bleu, bleu cheese etc...
__________________
"We are not fighting so that you will offer us something. We are fighting to eliminate you."

Hussein Massawi, the former leader of Hezbollah
  Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:58 PM.

Rules - DVD Talk - Archive - Privacy Statement - Top

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.2.0
Copyright 2011 DVDTalk.com All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.