In his new book, Roland Dumas – the Foreign Minister of France from 1984 to 1986 and again from 1988 to 1993 under President François Mitterrand – reveals the level of influence Israel has in France. The book is entitled “Assault: 50 Years of Shared Secrets with François Mitterrand” [“Coups et Blessures: 50 ans de secrets partatgés avec François Mitterrand“] and apparently delves into the pressure that the ex- French President received from Israel and the Israeli lobby. The most telling anecdote concerned the President’s willingness to meet with Yasser Arafat in the late 80’s, in which Mitterrand was apparently willing to meet with the Palestinian leader until he was pressured by Israel:
The Jewish lobby, as Mitterrand called it, worked ardently. The pressures were very strong when I announced that I intended to meet Arafat during his visit to the European Parliament in September 1988. I obtained permission from President Mitterrand to greet him [Arafat] after painful negotiations. After relating his concerns to me, he told me: ok, but you will assume the responsibility… maybe he wanted to insinuate that I would be fired if things went badly.
“Le lobby juif, comme l’appelait Mitterrand, œuvrait ardemment. Les pressions étaient très fortes lorsque j’ai annoncé que je comptais rencontrer Arafat durant sa visite au parlement européen en septembre 1988. J’ai obtenu du président Mitterrand après de pénibles tractations la permission de l’accueillir. Après m’avoir répété ses mises en garde, il m’a dit : bon d’accord, mais tu en assumeras la responsabilité…peut-être voulait il insinuer par-là ma démission si les choses tournaient mal.”
Dumas goes on to say that:
The Israelis has their way in France, and manipulated the French information services as they wanted
“Les Israéliens en font à leur guise en France, et manipulent les services de renseignements français (DST) comme bon leur semble”
I do not agree with Israeli policies, I was always loyal to the principle of equality established by General de Gaulle in the Middle East. The Arab people have the right to be respected. The current Israeli (Zionist) policies are not going down the right path.
“je ne suis pas d’accord avec la politique israélienne, j’ai toujours été fidèle au principe d’équilibre instauré par le général de Gaule au Moyen Orient. Les peuples arabes ont droit au respect. La politique israélienne actuelle inspirée des activités proches des sionistes ne suit pas le bon chemin”
Of course, all of this must be taken with a grain of salt. I have yet to read the book (only reviews here and here – French) so I have been unable to read the context of these quotations. However, assuming that this Arafat story is not fictional and that the former Foreign Minister has evidence to support his claim that Israel “controls France” (“Israël contrôle la France,”) it is clear that the United States is not the only country with a strong Israeli lobby.
Of course, with the current French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, shifting French policy to more Israeli-friendly footing due to what many have deemed an affinity for Zionism, the Israeli lobby in France might no longer have to pressure the Élysée palace.
Photo from India Times