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Macron and the Polish illusions

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The French president’s speech to the European Parliament does not bode well.

An editorial by Paweł Lisicki, editor-in-chief of the influential Polish conservative weekly Do Rzeczy, published in the 24 January 2022 issue under the title “‘Wszystko to wróży jak najgorzej’. Macron i polskie złudzenia” (“‘All this does not bode well.’ Macron and the Polish illusions”).

Anyone who wants to understand the current definition of “European” need only listen to President Emmanuel Macron’s speech to the European Parliament at the start of the French presidency of the EU Council. Alongside the general platitudes and rhetorical padding so typical of contemporary politicians, there was some more substantial content.

Our European construction is based on three major promises. A promise of democracy that was born on our continent, that has been reinvented, refounded on our continent and revitalised over the last 70 years, a promise of progress, shared by all, and a promise of peace. It has kept its promise for seven decades.”
Democracy, progress and peace: does that sound familiar? No doubt it does, because it is the characteristic style of liberal progressives. And as always, these slogans are there to mask hypocrisy and duplicity. This man who speaks of democracy first promised that there would be no mandatory vaccination in France, and then a few months later he transformed his country into a Covid isolation ward. This defender of democracy has proclaimed that “the unvaccinated are not citizens”. I’m just waiting to see him take away their voting rights. In the name of democracy, of course!

But for the moment, this French defender of democracy intends to devote himself to the defence of the rule of law. “The idea that in order to be more effective, the rule of law should be revisited is taking hold”, he said before the European Parliament, but “the end of the rule of law is a sign of the return to authoritarian regimes, to earlier times in our history”. It will be easily noted that although no specific country was mentioned during this speech, the “defence of the rule of law” will undoubtedly concern Poland and Hungary. It’s enough to make a cat laugh. Macron, this pure product of an authoritarian oligarchy, is standing up for democracy. What a tragicomic farce!

Artwork made by Renaissance, the group of French MEPs of Renew Europe, on the occasion of the French presidency of the Council of the European Union. On the tree, the symbol of the far left feminist movement Strajk Kobiet.

Even more grotesque were his concrete proposals for changes that France intends to pursue in order to deepen the process of European integration. Thus, according to him, it is necessary to “update” the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights “to make it more explicit on the protection of the environment and the recognition of the right to abortion.
It should be recalled that the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights is a document adopted and solemnly proclaimed at the Nice summit in December 2000, with a list of fundamental rights and freedoms of the European Union citizen. Instead of defending human rights from conception to death, Macron proposes the right to kill, which he says should be part of… fundamental rights. Instead of common sense, he proclaims ecology gone mad, hence the words about “environmental sovereignty”, whatever that means.

For those who know French politics, this does not come as a surprise. The President of the French Republic is a staunch supporter of abortion and an equally uncompromising follower of the climate religion. Not only has his government extended the so-called “right” to kill the unborn, but it is also persecuting those who defend life. Yet he is the one who loves to talk about saving the Earth, but with limiting CO₂ emissions as the only way to do so.

Of course, his speech in the European Parliament is part of the French election campaign, in which Macron is keen to present himself as the most resolute defender of the left-wing humanitarian Masonic ideology. But from the Polish point of view, his speech is further proof of the extent of the gap between the sensitivities and fundamental beliefs of Polish society and the EU mainstream. And I do not have just ideology in mind here. In the discussions about Poland’s membership of the EU, reference is made to the “safety” it allegedly provides against Russia. However, according to the French president, it is not appropriate to oppose Russia through NATO. On the contrary, it is necessary to conduct a dialogue with it, to constantly seek agreement. Apart from the French, it is the Germans who are best at this game.

All this taken together does not bode well. Seeking to play the role of an enlightened leader and securing the support of the leftist-liberal establishment, President Macron is going to radicalise his criticism of Poland. Immediately after his speech, he added while speaking to journalists that Europe was acting “too slowly” towards Poland and Hungary. That is why, during his EU presidency, there will be “hearings in February for Poland and in March for Hungary”.
The irony is that I had recently read that it was President Macron who was going to broker an agreement between Warsaw and Brussels. It is a big joke.

Only his crushing defeat, an outcome I sincerely wish him, would bring a chance for change, but that is not what seems to be on the horizon. There is no doubt in my mind that the preservation of Polish sovereignty is virtually impossible in a European Union dominated by people of President Macron’s calibre. It is good that he says it himself so clearly. But will the Poles be able to abandon their illusions?

Translated from Polish by the Visegrád Post.