When The Frog Pokes The Bear

No, this isn’t one of Aesop’s Fables. This article refers to a geopolitical game that could end disastrously for one of its players. Why are they playing the game at all?

Oh, Champs-Elysses!

Not since the days of Napoleon has France been a genuine world power.

There are too many strikes. Too many holidays. Too many regulations.

There, adultery isn’t a sin; it’s a sport.

The French Revolution robbed France of its Catholicism and replaced it with a vacuous secularism that continues to fail. In fact, it’s failing for all the West, as most were stupid enough to adopt the French model.

After all, Catholic historian Erik Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn once wrote, “For the average person, all problems date to World War II; for the more informed, to World War I; for the genuine historian, to the French Revolution.”

And that makes it easy for a potent religion like Islam to come in and rearrange the face of the place.

Sure, France has world-class cuisine, fashion, and food. Its language is beautiful. But those external qualities no longer mask the internal struggle.

What was left of France’s empire died in Niger. Yet, it keeps acting like it’s got much more power than it has. And that’s dangerous.

Gone are the days when France can prance around the planet, doling out dictums to everyone else, especially Russia.

You’d have thought France would have heeded history’s lesson when Napoleon and his Grand Armeé were sent packing from Russia’s western frontier.

But Le Petit Roi – that’s what journalist Pepe Escobar calls President Macron – may still be too young to appreciate history. He still thinks he can restore France’s greatness, but that’s long gone. For the foreseeable future, France is merely an open-air museum.

What was France’s indiscretion this time? It let a bunch of its Foreign Legionnaires go to Ukraine, where Russia wasted no time in eviscerating them.

First, let’s make sure we know who the Legionnaires are, as the last time most of us saw one was Bugs Bunny as a “Foreign Legion Hare.”

The French Foreign Legion

The French Foreign Legion is a branch of the French Army that consists of foreign volunteers who serve under the French flag. Established in 1831, it allowed foreigners to join the French military and participate in France’s colonial campaigns.

The French Foreign Legion is known for its rigorous training, strong esprit de corps, and loyalty to France. It has a reputation for being a formidable and elite force that can operate in any environment and situation. The Legion accepts recruits worldwide if they meet the physical, mental, and legal requirements.

The French Foreign Legion has a history of involvement in many wars and conflicts, such as the Crimean War, the World Wars, the Indochina War, the Algerian War, the Gulf War, and the War on Terror. Today, the Legion has about 8,000 soldiers and is often deployed to Africa, Asia, and the Middle East for peacekeeping, humanitarian, or combat missions.

The French Foreign Legion has a distinctive uniform and insignia, such as the white kepi, the red and green epaulets, the blue sash, and the grenade emblem. The Legion also has its traditions, such as the marching song “Le Boudin,” the celebration of Camerone Day every April 30th, and the patronage of Saint Anthony.

The French Foreign Legion offers a unique opportunity for foreigners to serve France and earn French citizenship. Legionnaires sign a five-year contract and are given a new identity upon joining. They can apply for citizenship after a few years of service or immediately if wounded.

And there’s the rub: about ten percent of the Legionnaires are Russian speakers, such as Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarussians.

The French government gives them new identities and, if they’re good enough, new passports after roughly eight years.

But the Russian government doesn’t consider them French and won’t call them “Jacques,” whatever shiny new passport they have.

With that laid out, let’s get to the incident.

Russia Bombs a Shelter Full of Legionnaires

“On the evening of 16 January, the armed forces of the Russian Federation carried out a precision strike on a temporary deployment point of foreign militants in the city of Kharkiv, the core of which were French mercenaries,” said the Russian defense ministry.

Nice one. The Russians called them “mercenaries” and not “Legionnaires,” which gave France some breathing room and plausible deniability.

Local officials in Kharkiv said two Russian missiles struck a residential area in the center of the city, injuring seventeen people, two of them seriously, and badly damaging buildings.

Of course, France denied the whole thing.

“France helps Ukraine with supplies of military material and military training, in full compliance with international law, in order to help Ukraine in its fight to defend its sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity,” said the French foreign ministry.

“France has no mercenaries, neither in Ukraine nor elsewhere, unlike certain others,” it added.

Smart one, Froggie. They aren’t mercenaries, so you’re not lying.

What was the real reason?

According to The Duran, the French government sent French Foreign Legion soldiers, including intelligence officers, to Ukraine but continued to pay and coordinate them through French intelligence.

They’re conducting special operations behind Russian lines, and that led to a Russian strike on the hotel where they were based. Naughty, naughty!

Russia has been warning the West to stop sending drones and surveillance to Ukraine, and now they are actively targeting and hunting down foreign fighters, leading to a dangerous escalation with the West.

Why is France Risking Confrontation With Russia?

There are a few possible reasons.

One is that France is trying to curry favor with America. For what reason, I have no idea.

Another likely reason is that Europe has long opposed Russia’s dominance in the energy and commodity markets, which has caused anxiety over its inability to control Russia’s resources.

Russia is tightening its control of the commodity trade, causing nervousness in Europe. There’s talk of potential retaliatory steps.

But if the West does something stupid like confiscating Russia’s frozen assets, Russia will seize Western assets in return. That could lead to Russian control of commodity markets and hinder European access.

Finally, this may just be a power play. Macron’s stern message to Russia is a response to the collapse of French influence in North Africa.

Whatever it is, France is writing checks it can’t cash. The Russians would eat them alive.

Wrap Up

France needs to cool it, Monsieur Le President, most of all.

Yes, he’s a WEF tool and protege of the Rothschilds.

But if he pursues this course, Russia will backhand France in the mouth, escalating a conflict that should be much closer to its end than its beginning.

That may be what frightens Macron’s masters most of all.

The Daily Reckoning