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France As Prima Donna on Iran in Geneva Presaged on Africa & Iraq in NY

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 9 -- The (re) emergence of France and its foreign minister Laurent Fabius as prima donna at P5+1 talks with Iran in Geneva has been a surprise to some.

 It shouldn't be.

 Of late among the P5 in the UN Security Council, France has been talking above its weight.

  On Mali, after it intervened before Council approval in January 2013, France held solo media stakeouts, tightly controlling who got to ask questions and when.

  On the Democratic Republic of the Congo, France took the initiative even from the other Western P3 and handpicked which media could go on the UN plane to cover what was called the Security Council's Great Lakes trip (or France's "Genocide Joyride" as others called it).

  On the Central African Republic most recently, France deigned to "share" the spotlight with Rwanda - - most to shunt off questions about the International Criminal Court to that African Union member. Inner City Press video (and question) here.

  Further back, in December 2010 France abstained from the Security Council's resolution ending the Iraq Oil for Food program, entirely to push the interests of Banque Nationale de Paris.

  So why should Fabius' eleventh hour grandstanding come as a surprise?

   Back in September 2013, after France tried to take leadership of the Syria expatriate opposition by sponsored Ahmed al Jarba as the "sole representative of the Syria people," Inner City Press asked Fabius how this alchemy could be performed in the UN without a vote of the credentials committee.

  Fabius responded with bluster; moments later he told a reporter from Al Mayadeen that he was not a real journalist, and turned as usual to French state media. It's to that and another audience that Fabius' prima donna routine is directed. Watch this site.


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