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France

Paris, 1914. Image: AFP/Getty Images

The Spectator at war: push on to Paris?

1 September 2014 8:30

The Spectator, 5 September 1914: SEDAN Day has passed, but there has been no second Sedan, as the Germans so fondly hoped. Indeed, as far as one can yet learn,… Continue reading

1 Comment
Merkel And Hollande Meet At Baltic Coast

If you want a lesson in how not to run an economy, take the Eurostar

14 August 2014 15:18

For the last five years, politicians of all shades have been banging on about how we should adopt this or that aspect of German economic policy. George Osborne argued in… Continue reading

92 Comments
WW1 Recruitment Posters To Be Auctioned

There are no lessons from the first world war

4 August 2014 20:23

I’ve just been in France, where the shadow of the First World War always seems to be darker and longer than that cast over Britain; it is partly that, aesthetically,… Continue reading

45 Comments
The South of France is the playground of Russian oligarchs - oodles of cash, lurid boats and a lack of taste. (VALERY HACHE/AFP/GettyImages)

It’s a bit rich for France to castigate Britain for sheltering oligarchs

23 July 2014 17:52

There’s a big to-do between France and Britain at the moment, with France accusing Britain of protecting oligarchs’ money in London. President Francois Hollande’s Socialist Party said that before lecturing… Continue reading

46 Comments
European Leaders Commemorate The 100th Anniversary of World War I In Belgium

Can the European Union agree a sanctions regime for Russia?

22 July 2014 8:31

David Cameron talked tough on sanctions yesterday, suggesting that he had the German and French support. I believe he means what he says and is serious about following through with… Continue reading

77 Comments
Israel has not forgotten the history and values which underpinned its foundations, and fights to protect them.

The West has drifted away from Israel — and itself

16 July 2014 9:18

Is Israel drifting away from the West? That was Hugo Rifkind’s claim in his column in the magazine last week. Hugo wrote: ‘Israel drifting away. Never mind whose fault it… Continue reading

598 Comments
The French look very, very dangerous in Brazil. (AFP PHOTO / FRANCK FIFE)

World Cup diary: The French look very good. Damn.

23 June 2014 12:59

Still going on, is it, the World Cup? There have been some fine games and some poor games with surprisingly thrilling conclusions. Ronaldo, with possibly the worst haircut I have… Continue reading

32 Comments
'Can we suffer Phil Neville’s mogadon monotone drawl for much longer?' Asks Rod Liddle.

World Cup diary: I can’t take much more of the BBC’s coverage

15 June 2014 22:20

It takes quite a lot for me to feel even mildly sympathetic towards the French, but they had my support against the semi-reformed death squad of Honduras. One should not… Continue reading

38 Comments
You can 'jet' to the Cannes Film Festival, courtesy of San Francisco-based tech firm Uber. (ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP/Getty Images)

How to bug the French government

13 May 2014 11:35

Mr has news from La Belle France, where authorities have incensed several foreign tech companies by proposing to ban geo-locating software apps to protect the antediluvian local taxi service. One… Continue reading

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Jean Paul Gaultier tells Mr Steerpike that he comes to Britain because it's iconoclastic and sexy.

Britain is sexier than France, says Jean Paul Gaultier

23 April 2014 17:03

If the French are flocking to Britain, it’s not just down to a 75 per cent tax hike on the super-rich. Multi-millionaire designer, Jean Paul Gaultier comes to the UK… Continue reading

22 Comments
Image: Getty

France – worker’s paradise or Steynian Dystopia?

11 April 2014 14:12

Un autre jour glorieux dans la lutte contre réalité économique. France’s major employers’ federation and two unions have signed an agreement whereby employees not subject to the country’s 35-hour labour… Continue reading

27 Comments
Image: Getty

The minimum wage is broken – here’s how to fix it

2 April 2014 14:34

While welcoming George Osborne’s emphasis this week on raising employment, I have some caveats about his target – to have the highest employment rate in the G7. This isn’t hugely… Continue reading

9 Comments
Chancellor Bethmann-Hollweg, Kaiser Wilhelm II and General Moltke depicted in 37 Days (Picture: BBC)

The BBC’s march to war

18 March 2014 9:23

Perhaps we are growing war-weary – weary, that is, of the gathering storm of World War One documentaries on the BBC. There have been so many, not just Max Hastings… Continue reading

21 Comments
Film-maker Alain Resnais. Photo: Jean-Regis Rouston/Roger Viollet/Getty Images

Film-maker who divided critics dies aged 91

2 March 2014 15:02

One of the greats of French cinema, Alain Resnais (1922 – 2014), has died. His early films, Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959) and Last Year in Marienbad (1961), which experimented boldly… Continue reading

4 Comments
Montpellier’s Antigone District by Ricardo Bofill. Photo: Patrick EOCHE/ Getty Images

France’s cultural excess is immoral (but I still love it)

21 February 2014 12:11

For a committed, if unsuccessful, capitalist, I enjoy French culture an embarrassing amount – every last state-funded drop of it. Give me five-act operas with cast lists the size of… Continue reading

12 Comments
John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough (1650 - 1722), in the process of winning the Battle of Blenheim 13th  August 1704.

French baiting from the PM?

31 January 2014 11:42

The French media might prostrate themselves before their own leaders; but they are a little more adventurous with ours. Le Figaro reports that the original plan for today’s Anglo-French Summit… Continue reading

27 Comments
All the president's women: Segolene Royal, Valerie Trierweiler and Julie Gayet. (PATRICK KOVARIK,VALERY HACHE,ERIC FEFERBERG/AFP/Getty Images)

The messy Hollande triangle reinforces the case for marriage

20 January 2014 11:13

Well, whatever about the French press, for British papers, the Hollande affair is the gift that keeps on giving. Apparently shored up in the presidential residence in Versailles, Valerie Trierweiler… Continue reading

45 Comments
Is it all over between Francois Hollande and Ed Miliband? (LEFTERIS PITARAKIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Does Ed Miliband feel betrayed by Francois Hollande?

15 January 2014 10:44

President Hollande’s private life continues to fascinate the whole world (other than the French press pack, obviously); but it is worth noting that the embattled president signalled a major shift… Continue reading

17 Comments
Image: Getty

Francois Hollande is hacked off with the press

14 January 2014 19:03

Francois Hollande, was framed by a set of panto-esque red curtains as he attempted to conduct a gigantic U-turn on fiscal policy while simultaneously fending off interest in the identity… Continue reading

6 Comments
Image: Getty

A bad week for ‘President Normal’ just got worse

14 January 2014 17:24

So she’s been fired! We now know why Valérie Trierweiler, the established companion of the president of the republic is currently in hospital suffering from ‘a severe case of the blues’.… Continue reading

79 Comments
The claims surrounding the alleged dalliance between President Hollande and the actress Julie Gayet become more fantastic by the day. (Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

The President, his mistress and the Mob

13 January 2014 15:03

There was a moment when it looked like French Closer had done President Hollande a favour. His poll ratings have been abysmal and the economy has tanked. What better distraction… Continue reading

22 Comments
FRANCE-GOVERNMENT-HOLLANDE

What François Hollande’s latest crisis means for Westminster politics

3 January 2014 12:42

Beyond the slew of amusing ‘No man’s hand’ photos of the beleaguered François Hollande trying and failing to find support from other European leaders, there are a number of implications… Continue reading

64 Comments
Jane Birkin with Serge Gainsbourg. Image: Getty

Liberté, égalité, pornographie

10 October 2013 14:10

Bravo Melanie McDonagh. Your stand against the coarsening of society’s sexual sensibilities is very welcome. But it is not just in Britain that porn has gone mainstream. We French now… Continue reading

5 Comments
Image: Getty

It’s tempting to compare France’s National Front with Ukip — but wrong

8 October 2013 17:56

There is today only one united French political party, and it is the National Front. The FN has been profiting from a split French right, a hopeless French left and… Continue reading

93 Comments
Abu Qatada smiles as he evades deportation once again in April 2012. (MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/GettyImages)

Countering Terrorism in Britain and France, by Frank Foley – review

4 June 2013 9:18

Have you ever wondered why we’re stuck with the radical cleric Abu Qatada? It’s a question the last four Home Secretaries will have asked as they battled, and failed, to… Continue reading

16 Comments