The Macron presidency's dark side revealed

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The scandal surrounding French president Emmanuel Macron’s security advisor Alexandre Benalla, who beat up May Day demonstrators while passing himself off as a police officer, evokes a nauseating picture of a parallel police and a private security office within the heart of the French presidential office, writes Mediapart publishing editor Edwy Plenel in this opinion article on the fast-developing crisis engulfing Macron and his government. This privatisation of the president’s security, with the ugly atmosphere of hatchet men with a law to themselves, reveals the dark side of Macron’s monarchic style of leadership.

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Here are two men working for the French presidency, Alexandre Benalla and his acolyte Vincent Crase, caught in the act; false police officers, but true bruisers who beat up demonstrators. It cannot be excluded that there are still more such irregular agents sheltered by the French presidential office, the Élysée Palace, as appears to be suggested by the enigma of a third man, Philippe Mizerski, who was also present during the violence on May 1st at the place de la Contrescarpe in Paris.