Christophe Castaner claims to be “the first defender of the cops in France” but he provoked the indignation of the police. How do you explain such a climate?
The credibility of the current Interior Minister with the police has always been very weak. But today, the break between who claims to be the boss of the “cops” and the police is complete and final. Never has an interior minister dropped his troops so pitifully. The anger is immense among the police. They are injured and they express it as they did on Wednesday evening in Nice by putting down their handcuffs. I feel in them a form of depression and disgust.
By receiving the unions, isn’t Castaner correcting things?
When you’re interior minister, you keep your cool in the storm. He gave in to media pressure and today measures the ravages of his speech. His coastering will not erase the cowardice felt by the police.
The head of state seems to want to assert himself in support of the whole nation …
For the moment, he has especially asserted himself as the worthy successor of François Hollande. The Traoré family inflicted on him the same humiliation as Leonarda after his incredible injunction in the Keeper of the Seals. I hope he comes out of his deafening silence on Sunday to say that our country trusts its police, that they are republican and that everyone must respect them with confidence. I expect courage from the President of the Republic, finally.
The Interior Ministry says it wants to combat racism in the police, modernize methods of arrest or consolidate the independence of the police. What do you think ?
It is necessary to relentlessly combat the racist behavior of a tiny minority that fouls the police, but it must also be remembered that, every day, 30 police officers and gendarmes are injured on missions and 110 are attacked. The suspicion of racism leading to the suspension is a moral aberration and a legal monster, while the police are undoubtedly the most controlled institution. From now on, anyone arrested can accuse a police officer of racism and obtain his suspension. Together with the gendarmes, the police are the last bulwark against communitarianism, gang and gang law. Without them, there is no longer a Republic. I am shocked when the Minister of the Interior does not press charges against pseudo-artists who accuse the police of racism or terrorism. Remember the terrible image of this colored policeman who was called “sold” by allegedly anti-racist protesters.
Is the ban on the method of “strangulation” necessary?
Only the police can exercise legitimate duress. When someone breaks the law and refuses to comply, they use force. To deprive them of this method is to make them helpless. Substituting this technique with the Taser is incomprehensible because this weapon is much more dangerous. To secure police interventions, it is necessary to consolidate training and generalize deterrent pedestrian cameras. Castaner bought 10,000 in China but they are failing due to a lack of autonomy. These cameras can lead the police to scrupulously respect the code of ethics to which they are subject and verify that the LBD shots do not target the faces.
What do you remember from the last Odoxa-Le Figaro poll on the image of the police?
With 76% of good opinions, the confidence of the French remains massive! This is the main thing.
Are you asking for a ban on the demonstration against “police violence” scheduled for Saturday?
Of course. The French risked a fine of 135 euros if they left their home beyond an hour during confinement. I also remember the overflight of helicopters on the Mediterranean coast tracking swimmers … No one can understand this “double standard,” allowing prohibited demonstrations to flourish in the framework of the state of emergency. When the Republic chooses those who can break the law, it breaks down and leaves communities the power to impose their rules.
Minister Castaner will reply that the rules set by the state are being erased by the magnitude of the emotion caused by the George Floyd affair in the United States …
When emotion prevails over the law, the rule of law disappears. What happened in the United States is an abomination. This aroused a legitimate emotion which I share. Remember, however, that the United States has nothing to do with France. Some people want to exploit American emotion to destabilize the Republican police and therefore our whole country. I regret that the government has happily fallen into this crude trap. In a few sentences, Castaner destroyed our entire legal architecture. The proven suspicion in place of proof, the emotion superior to the law … It is new, grotesque and above all, very dangerous.
Doesn’t the government try to avoid a conflagration of the suburbs?
The more we step back, the more explosive this problem will be if we don’t put a stop to it, with courage, whatever the cost. The fractures of our country are only the consequence of permanent abandonments. Today, to answer it, there is no other solution than the law, the law and still the law.