It turns out that not even French President Emmanuel Macron canceling the fuel tax hike will assuage the violence that has consumed Paris these past few weeks.
According to The Guardian, another round of ultra-violence is headed to Paris this weekend; French security forces have now deployed armored vehicles to the city to hopefully quell the storm that is to come. One government official told reporters that 89,000 police and gendarmes would be mobilized across the country, with 8,000 of them in the capital.
“We are facing people who are not there to demonstrate but are there to smash things up and we want to make sure we’re not leaving them to do what they want,” said the prime minister, Édouard Philippe.
The deployed armored vehicles are capable of firing teargas grenades and clear barricades. In the city center, banks, shops, restaurants and other businesses have already boarded up in fear of what will come on Saturday. More from The Guardian:
At Place de la Bastille, which has been undergoing pedestrianization, workers cleared away metal and concrete barriers and carried off anything that could be thrown. The windows of the Banque de France were being boarded up on Friday morning. Staff at the Bastille Opéra were reported to have locked the orchestra’s instruments somewhere safe fearing an assault on the building.
Parisiens, even those far from the Champs Élysées, Arc de Triomphe and Place de la Concorde – the scenes of violent clashes in previous weeks – were advised not to leave dustbins on the streets for fear they could be set alight.
Both the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre museum will remain closed on Saturday.
French media reported on Friday that President Macron refused a demand to meet with “moderate” protesters. Benjamin Cauchy, an unofficial spokesman, said the meeting was called because “insurrection is at the gates of France and we don’t want any deaths this weekend.”
Macron has kept his silence since this past Wednesday.
The “Yellow Vest” protest, named after the neon-yellow security jackets protesters have been wearing, initially began in urban and rural areas in response to the Macron government instituting a fuel tax hike. It has since swelled into a massive mob with a whole variety of demands that target the cost of living in France as well as high taxes in general.
Hoping to quell the madness, President Macron canceled the fuel tax entirely this past Wednesday, but it seems to have only emboldened the “Yellow Vest” protesters even more.
Jacline Mouraud, the self-proclaimed spokesperson for the “yellow vests,” told The Associated Press that Macron’s move “is on the right path but in my opinion it will not fundamentally change the movement.” Mouraud told protesters to seize on Macron’s weakness and demand other perks, such as a minimum wage hike. More protests are expected to come on Saturday.
As noted by the Daily Wire’s Emily Zanotti, much of the media ignored the fact that the fuel tax was implemented to combat climate change.