Above, L’avenue des Champs-Élysées lies in the 8th arrondissement of Paris, is nearly a mile and a quarter long and just over 75 yards wide. It runs between the Place de la Concorde and the Place Charles de Gaulle, where the Arc de Triomphe is located. It is known for its theatres, cafés, and luxury shops, for the annual Bastille Day military parade, and as the finish of the Tour de France cycle race. The name is French for the Elysian Fields, the paradise for dead heroes in Greek mythology. The French proudly call their world-famous boulevard “la plus belle avenue du monde” (“the world’s most beautiful avenue”).
Tragically, yesterday evening a French police officer lost his life and others were seriously injured in yet another terrorist attack, this time on this iconic avenue.
The significance of course of this outrage was the time as well as the place for on Sunday the French go to the polls in the first round of the French Presidential election. This organ has called the contest for Macron. However, Macron’s victory is by no means certain. What is certain is the accuracy of Martin Kettle’s – an associate editor of the Guardian – statement that the most important election for Britain is the one in France. This in his latest article in the Guardian. GOTO: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/20/election-britain-france-emmanuel-macron-brexit?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+main+NEW+H+categories&utm_term=222538&subid=15907465&CMP=EMCNEWEML6619I2
Let us be clear. The election of Marine Le Pen as President would be a colossal blow to the European Project. At present, such a victory is totally hypothetical but what is not hypothetical is when such a victory would occur: Sunday 7th May 2017. This of course will be after what we could call the “first round of the UK General Election” – four days after the local elections on Thursday 4th May 2017. Thirty one days after the results of the French election is known, UK voters will go to the polls.
We are in uncharted territory here.
We do know that the European Commission appear to toughening their negotiating stance as the learned Dr. North concludes in his blogpost today. GOTO: http://eureferendum.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=86450
What we do know is that there appears to by a weird poetry about the events that are unfolding and might unfold.
The police officer was murdered on the Champs-Élysées – reference to the Elysian Fields. If elected, Marine Le Pen will take up official residence in the Palais de l’Élysée, the official residence of the President of France since 1848 – the year of European revolutions. The name Élysée again deriving from the Elysian Fields.
To cap it all we have the European Union’s anthem, the “Ode to Joy.” This the Choral of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Beethoven was of course a great supporter of European unification but abandoned his support for Bonaparte when he proclaimed himself Emperor. Now of course, the EU anthem has no official words but if we look to the first two lines of Beethoven’s work:
“Freude, schöner Götterfunken,” (Joy, beautiful spark of God,)
“Tochter aus Elysium,” (Daughter from Elysium,)