Archive for the ‘Jacques Chirac’ Category

Chirac guilty

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

Former French president Chirac convicted of graft, escapes jail time

Popular former French president Jacques Chirac was convicted of graft on Thursday but escaped jail, receiving a suspended two year sentence for running ghost workers at Paris city hall.

The 79-year-old statesman, who was excused from court on medical grounds, was found guilty of influence peddling, breach of trust and embezzlement between 1990 and 1995, when he was mayor of the French capital.

In their ruling, judges said Chirac’s behaviour had cost Paris taxpayers the equivalent of US$1.8-million (1.4-million euros).

Readers of this blog may remember Blacque Jacques sipping piña coladas earlier in the trial; now his lunch money shenanigans while he was mayor of Paris earned him a slap in the wrist while others are in the clink,

He was tried alongside nine alleged accomplices. Two were cleared, but the rest were convicted of helping Chirac run a system at Paris city hall under which political allies were paid municipal salaries for fake jobs.

The city of Paris, which is now run by a Socialist mayor, dropped a case for damages over the case after Chirac and his UMP party agreed to pay 2.2-million euros to cover the embezzled funds.

Chirac — who lives in a luxury Paris flat overlooking the Seine near the Eiffel Tower paid for by the family of the late former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri — repaid 500,000 euros out of his own pocket.

He was convicted of hiring members of his political party for non-existent municipal jobs, using the civic payroll to employ his own campaign staff.

In all, 19 fake jobs were created in Paris and its suburb Nanterre between 1990 and 1995, ahead of Chirac’s successful presidential bid.

Several people were convicted in connection with the ghost worker case in 2004, including Juppe, who was found guilty of mishandling public funds but is now a key figure in the government of Chirac’s successor Sarkozy.

C’est la vie, mon mes amis.

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Black Jacques Chirac, sipping piña coladas, excused from trial

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Remember Jacques’s City Hall escapades?

[In March of 2005] I posted that 47 people were on trial for rigging public works contracts (ah, a whiff of New Jersey chez le Seine?) and that on Nov. 2002 Chirac had avoided prosecution over his exhorbitant food bills (which avearaged 600 euros (£420) a day on average between 1988 and 1995) from back when he was mayor of Paris because the statute of limitations had ran out.

Jacques, as you may recall, also had shenanigans in the Clearstream affaire, Jacque’s part in a coup in the Comoros, Jacques’s own secret service mentioned above, and the Chirac connections in the Oil-For-Food scam.

Jacques is now on trial for embezzlement charges during his tenure as mayor of Paris – this time the statute of limitations apparently didn’t run out?

But fear not, Jacques will not be unduly stressed: French Court Lets Chirac Skip Trial, because he had his physician sign something saying Jacques is (conveniently) suffering from memory loss.

Maybe he ought to lay off the hooch,

Mr. Chirac was seen in good shape this summer, sipping piña coladas in Saint-Tropez or eating mussels with a beer in Brittany.

Sing it, Jimmy!

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Chirac trial suspended

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

One for the “what did I tell ya?” file,
Sunday I posted,

Don’t bet your house on either the trial going through or Chirac losing if it does.

Sure enough, here’s the latest,
Chirac Trial Suspended

A French court on Tuesday suspended the trial of former French President Jacques Chirac until a higher court rules on a constitutional claim lodged by a codefendant.

On Tuesday, the Paris court said the claim was “serious,” and had to be referred to a higher court. In turn, the high court will have three months to decide whether it wishes to refer the claim to France’s Constitutional Council—a jurisdiction of which Mr. Chirac is a member.

The trial’s suspended for three months; the investigation leading to it,

The investigation, which began more than a decade ago, was suspended for many years while Mr. Chirac was president, because he benefited from judicial immunity.

Moving right along…

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Chirac to go on trial, maybe

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

Years ago I was posting about Jacques Chirac’s outrageous spending while he was mayor of Paris:

It’s now time for a Fausta’s blog flashback: On October 7, 2005 I posted:

Blacque Jacques Chirac’s “lunch money”
Last March I posted that 47 people were on trial for rigging public works contracts (ah, a whiff of New Jersey chez le Seine?) and that on Nov. 2002 Chirac had avoided prosecution over his exhorbitant food bills (which avearaged 600 euros (£420) a day on average between 1988 and 1995) from back when he was mayor of Paris because the statute of limitations had ran out.

Now Socialist MP Rene Dosiere (emphasis mine) sheds light on Chirac’s mysterious millions. President costs taxpayer three times official figure: Elysee Palace has 1,000 staff and budget of €82m

And that flashback’s just to whet your appetite for all things Chirac; There’s theClearstream affaireJacque’s part in a coup in the ComorosJacques’s own secret service mentioned above, and the Chirac connections in the Oil-For-Food scam.

Well, at least one of those chickens may come home to roost:
Former French President Chirac to stand trial, maybe

That is, if the whole case isn’t derailed by a last-minute protest by another defendant.
If the trial goes ahead as planned, Chirac, 78, faces a month in court on charges that he masterminded a scheme to have Paris City Hall pay for work that benefited his political party when he was mayor — before he became president in 1995.
A prison term is seen as highly unlikely, but in principle if convicted, Chirac could be jailed for up to 10 years and fined euro150,000 ($210,000).

Don’t bet your house on either the trial going through or Chirac losing if it does. The French powers that be may not want to besmirch Chirac’s “legacy”.

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Obama’s letter to Italy’s president the same as the letter to Chirac?

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

As you read yesterday, Obama’s letter to Chirac stated,

“we look forward to working together over the next four years in the spirit of peace and friendship to build a safer world.”

Well, it looks like the fax machine at the White House was working overtime:

I was reading Michael Ledeen’s post when I came across this,

He also sent a letter to Italian President Giorgio Napolitano (a member of the now defunct Communist Party), expressing confidence that the United States and Italy would work together “to overcome the current global political and economic hardships and build a safer world.”

Say, again?

So I did a quick google search, and found these articles:
Obama a Napolitano, rapporto Italia-Usa fondamentale

Obama si dice convinto che i due Paesi sapranno lavorare insieme “in spirito di pace e di amicizia, per costruire un mondo più sicuro”.

Roughly translated that means,

Obama says he’s certain that both countries can work together “in the spirit of peace and friendship, to build a safer world.”

La Repubblica, Reuters Italia, Julie News, Iris news:

Ho fiducia che sapremo lavorare in uno spirito di pace e di amicizia per costruire, nei prossimi quattro anni, un mondo pi sicuro.

Again,

I am confident that over the next four years we can work in the spirit of peace and friendship to build a safer world.”

As you can all see, the same exact wording went to Napolitano as it did to Chirac.

Ledeen speculates whether Obama

writes only to his peers, and thus instead of addressing himself to Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, President Obama wrote to a man who holds an almost entirely ceremonial position.

At least Napolitano is still in office. Chirac is not.

Whatever the reason, the folks running foreign policy are incompetent.

Unless, of course, you believe that diplomacy-by-form-letter is a good idea.

UPDATE
Blue Star Chronicles has a theory.

Obama’s letter to Chirac

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

UPDATE
Diplomacy-by-form-letter

Obama Upsets Sarkozy With Letter to Jacques Chirac. And why would Sarko be upset?

Because the letter said that “we look forward to working together over the next four years in the spirit of peace and friendship to build a safer world.”

Say what?

I kid you not. Erik had ther original from Le Figaro:

«Je suis certain que nous pourrons au cours des quatre années à venir collaborer ensemble dans un esprit de paix et d’amitié afin de construire un monde plus sûr»

The Christian Science Monitor comes to Obama’s defense: Obama writes letter to Chirac – blogosphere goes crazy

Our handy colleague, Laurent Belsie, who writes the New Economy blog here at the Monitor, speaks French. (We don’t hold that against him.)

Well, isn’t that nice of them. I read French. Let’s hope they don’t hold that against me.

With his help we found out that another French newspaper, the New Observer, explained that Obama was merely replying to a Chirac letter who was writing him as the head of his foundation — the Jacques Chirac Foundation for sustainable development and cultural dialogue.

The foundation is promoting access to water and medicines in west Africa, combating deforestation in the Congo Basin, and trying to save dying languages in Polynesia, according to a spokesman who helped set up the foundation.

The CSM says

there is no evidence that the language has upset President Sarkozy or anyone else in France.

Indeed, the letter may not have “upset” anyone anywhere. However, that does not make for good foreign policy. Let me explain why.

The CSM doesn’t link to Nouvel obs, but that’s what you have me for. Here’s the item in the original French:

Cette relation épistolaire peut-elle déboucher sur des projets communs? Pour l’instant, aucune rencontre n’est prévue entre les deux hommes, qui ne se connaissent pas personnellement. Mais les objectifs de la Fondation Chirac – développement durable et dialogue entre les civilisations – rejoignent les préoccupations du président américain.
Les deux hommes ont également en commun de s’être opposés à la guerre en Irak, qui a débuté il y a tout juste 5 ans, le 20 mars 2003.

My (very!) rough translation:

Will this correspondence lead to joint projects? For now, no meetings are in the works, and they have not met in person. But the objectives of the Chirac Foundation – sustainable development and dialogue between cultures agree with the American president’s.
Both men also share their opposition to the Iraq war, which started exactly five years ago, on March 20, 2003.

OK, so here are the facts:

  • Obama’s letter was sent on March 20, the anniversary of the Iraq war.
  • The US still has troops in Iraq defending that country, and those troops are not only fighting but actively engaged in building a civil society.
  • Each and any action by the Obama administration will be closely examined. Publicly approaching a private foundation with language that can be interpreted as being against the US presence in Iraq actively undermines that effort.

Additionally,

  • Nicolas Sarkozy came to power by running not only against the Socialists, but by actually running against Chirac within Chirac’s own party. Is it a good idea to publicly “extend a hand” to Chirac, then?
  • Chirac in fact, was allegedly involved in the affaire Clearstream
  • Chirac’s administration as mayor of Paris was marked by corruption, from the water works contracts to other kinds of graft, and let’s not forget about his lunch money.
  • Back in 2006 I was posting about Chirac’s own secret service. You may also recall Chirac’s support of Hugo Chavez.

And let’s not forget that Chirac’s foundation strongly promotes the globalisation tax, a tax on wealth generated by globalization:

“It could be a tax on airplane tickets, on carbon dioxide, on health products sold in industrialised countries, and indeed on international
financial transactions,” one source said.

So, pray tell, why send the letter in the first place?

UPDATE
Welcome, Neoneocon and Dan Riehl visitors.

Chirac’s attack poodle sends him to the hospital

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009

chiracs-attack-poodle
Jacques & Sumo, out on the town, in happier days

Former French President Chirac hospitalised after mauling by his clinically depressed poodle:

The former French First Lady did not reveal where on his body Chirac was bitten.

And the poodle’s named Sumo, at that.

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Mini-linkfest for a Saturday afternoon

Saturday, March 22nd, 2008

I’m putting together next Monday’s Carnival of Latin America of the Caribbean while the TV’s playing Solaris with George Clooney.

He looks more than Pretty Darned Good, he actually looks gorgeous (but not like the Gorgeous George). Normally I’m not much of a Clooney fan but this is downright distracting. Needless to say, I’m not getting much done, but here’s the link to the DVD.

Don’t expect the plot to make much sense. Just keep an eye on Clooney and everything will be just right.

(For those of you wondering what am I doing indoors, thank you for your concern. I went out already for several hours.)

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Ace has The Second, and Third, Coming: HuffPo Begs Us Not To “Crucify” the Obamessiah on This Easter Weekend; James Carville Calls Bill Richardson “Judas Iscariot” For Betraying Hillary and sent this video which features some totally creepy quotes on Obama:

Yes, Ace is indeed, “the straw that stirs the conservative blogosphere.”

Meanwhile, CNN spins for Obama.

Obama and terror: what every American should know.

I am thanking God for creating rich, white people for me to blame all my problems on.

Am I a typical white person? like Grandma?

———————————————————–

A few funnies:
Appropriately, Freudian just dreams won’t stop. Pay $2,600 for therapy.

When my son was little he would Absolutely.NOT.Go.Near the Easter Bunny. After reading this post I understand why.

At Coservative Belle:

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A new book has info on Jacques Chirac’s Japanese bank accounts. I wonder if also talks about his girlfriend.

Global Warming Tax Gets Cold Shoulder

Zombietime went to the Code Pink demonstration to illustrate the improper use of grammar.

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"Clinton wins surprise support from former French first lady" whose husband is under investigation, that is.

Friday, November 23rd, 2007

Via Memeorandum:
Clinton wins surprise support from former French first lady

U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won surprise backing from the wife of former French President Jacques Chirac on Thursday, together with a pledge to join her on the campaign trail.

Bernadette is clearly impressed:

“From the first look, the first words, Hillary Clinton is a friendly, smiling person who never lets herself be caught out,” she said.

Bernadette is ready, willing, and able:

She even expressed interest in attending the Democratic convention in Denver in August. “And if I can be of any use to her somewhere in the campaign, I’m available. I’d like to go with her and I’m going to suggest it to her.”

Oh, yes, please, Bernadette! Please do join Hillary on the campaign trail. It’ll bring you a welcome respite from Jacques’s fight for what little “honor” he has left [See Saturday 24 Nov. Update below]:

French ex-President Jacques Chirac says he will fight for “truth and honour”, after being placed under investigation for misuse of funds while Paris mayor.

It’s now time for a Fausta’s blog flashback: On October 7, 2005 I posted:

Blacque Jacques Chirac’s “lunch money”
Last March I posted that 47 people were on trial for rigging public works contracts (ah, a whiff of New Jersey chez le Seine?) and that on Nov. 2002 Chirac had avoided prosecution over his exhorbitant food bills (which avearaged 600 euros (£420) a day on average between 1988 and 1995) from back when he was mayor of Paris because the statute of limitations had ran out.

Now Socialist MP Rene Dosiere (emphasis mine) sheds light on Chirac’s mysterious millions. President costs taxpayer three times official figure: Elysee Palace has 1,000 staff and budget of €82m

the palace’s annual budget – which MPs set this week at €32.7m (about £22m) for 2006 – represents only a third of what it actually gets. Mr Dosière revealed that the Elysee employs about 1,000 staff, “the equivalent of the municipal workforce of a town of 50,000 people”. He said the palace’s “extraordinary opaqueness” meant he could not rule out further serious “Republican anomalies”.

In a financial maneuver worthy of the UN,

. . . Mr Chirac also pays some 150 to 200 employees out of his “official” budget, meaning he has at his disposal a staff of 1,000, Mr Dosière said. He has calculated that some 280 hours of presidential flying time, at an average cost to the taxpayer of €5,750 per hour, are unaccounted for by his official requirements.
But perhaps the biggest mystery is the president’s salary, which is fixed not by law but by himself and amounts – officially but hardly credibly – to just €6,594 a month, less than a third of that of the prime minister (€20,206) and less than half that of a minister (€13.471).

Très cher, that Jacques.

As if this wasn’t enough bad news for Jacques, The Telegraph has this story, How Chirac ‘ordered’ his own secret, secret service

A former French secret agent has accused President Jacques Chirac of ordering him to run a private secret service to channel ransom money to hostage-takers in Lebanon and Bosnia.
. . .
But Marchiani claims that the money was transferred to his accounts to set up an “intelligence outfit” on the orders of the former interior minister, Charles Pasqua in the mid-1980s, when Mr Chirac was prime minister.
“It was a system put in place at the request of Charles Pasqua in place of the official secret services,” said Marchiani.
Marchiani said he used the funds to secure the release of hostages in Lebanon, held by Hizbollah in 1986.
“We did not collaborate with the French secret services, we worked in their place,” he said.

And that flashback’s just to whet your appetite for all things Chirac; There’s the Clearstream affaire, Jacque’s part in a coup in the Comoros, Jacques’s own secret service mentioned above, and the Chirac connections in the Oil-For-Food scam.

Captain Ed writes,

Why wouldn’t Hillary want to get linked to Jacques Chirac? After all, he epitomized European resistance to the Bush administration, didn’t he? He did a lot more than that, however. He also epitomized French undermining of sanctions against Iraq. Chirac’s administration not only demanded an end to sanctions, they actively undermined them for years, stuffing billions of dollars into the pocket of Saddam Hussein and selling him dual-use technology forbidden by the UN. Rather than have that exposed, Chirac sided with Russia (who had committed the same kinds of acts) and Saddam.

Flopping Aces wants to know,

Why is it that criminals and their families seem to flock to the Clinton family?

Why indeed? In other Hillary news, SEC Opens Investigation of Company Headed by Key Supporter of Clintons.

I’m sure there’s room for Bernardette in the picture, while the other Hsu drops out of sight.

Update:
Was Media Really “Surprised” With Latest Hillary Endorsement?
Update 2:
The Paris prosecutors’ office has dismissed a suit against Donald Rumsfeld accusing the former U.S. defense secretary of torture

UPDATE, Saturday 24 November:
Jacques is not merely “defending his honor”, as the Beeb so quantly phrased it; he’s been charged with embezzling public funds (link in French via No Pasaran).
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Sarkozy inagurated

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

BBC video here

At the WaPo, Nicolas Sarkozy takes over as France’s president

In his inaugural address in the gilded Salle des Fetes, shortly after his predecessor drove off into retirement, Sarkozy vowed he would not disappoint the French people.

“I will defend the independence of France. I will defend the identity of France,” said the conservative leader, who is 52 and the first French head of state to be born after World War Two.

“There is a need to unite the French people … and to meet commitments because never before has (public) confidence been so shaken and so fragile,” he said in an apparent dig at Chirac, a former political mentor with whom he now has strained relations.

He also pledged to put the fight against global warming and the defense of human rights at the heart of his foreign policy.

The BBC emphasized a different aspect,

Mr Sarkozy stressed that “now change is needed” in France, in his inaugural speech, and called for national unity.

France “needs to take risks and follow initiatives,” he said.

The country also needed to “rehabilitate the values of work, effort, merit and respect” and defeat intolerance, he said.

Bloomberg‘s even more emphatic

– Nicolas Sarkozy, sworn in today as France’s president, called for a “fight against the fear of the future” as Jacques Chirac’s 12-year reign ended.

There’s much speculation over who will he choose for his cabinet.

Jacques waves “Ta-Tah for now”,

Meanwhile, Erik says Adieu to M. Pompadour.

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