Patrick Christys: Macron is a poundshop Napoleon with a catastrophic case of small man syndrome
Patrick Christys gives his take on the row between Britain and France over the Channel crossing migrant crisis
Emmanuel Macron is just a poundshop Napoleon with a catastrophic case of small man syndrome.
Last night Boris Johnson wrote a perfectly reasonable letter to President Macron putting forward several solutions to the crisis in the Channel.
These included: Joint patrols to prevent more boats from leaving French beaches, deploying more advanced technology, like sensors and radar,reciprocal maritime patrols in each other's territorial waters and airborne surveillance, deepening the work of the countries' joint intelligence cell, immediate work on a bilateral returns agreement with France, alongside talks to establish a UK-EU returns agreement.
He even said the air patrols, both manned and unmanned, could have a joint insignia. You can see it now can’t you, high above the Channel – these new aircraft, emblazoned with the shimmering red, white and blue of the British flag, our Union Jack…and the white of the French flag…
Basically, yet again, the British government has put forward solutions with one aim in mind – to prevent another mass loss of life in the Channel. To try to ensure that never again does a pregnant woman, young girls, young boys, men and women, find themselves on a sinking dinghy, freezing to death or drowning in one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world.
But Emmanuel Macron has thrown an absolutely massive strop – the toys have come out of the pram and he’s behaving like a toddler, although I suppose anybody would look exceptionally young if they stood next to his wife.
Macron called Boris’ letter unacceptable, accused him of playing politics and then disinvited Priti Patel from a ministerial meeting on Sunday between France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and European Commission.
It’s classic – ‘you’re not coming to my birthday party’ vibes. What the French are actually really angry about is that Boris made the letter public, so the international community can be under absolutely no illusions whatsoever about what Britain is offering to do, and the fact that France is rejecting that help.
People are saying: It’s not France’s job to protect Britain’s borders. That’s correct, it isn’t. But that’s no longer what we’re asking them to do – we’re asking them to work with us to make sure nobody dies in the Channel. Those are two different things.
The fact is, it’s actually Emmanuel Macron who’s the one trying to exploit the deaths of migrants for political gain – he’s the one with an election coming up after all. The problem for old Emmanuel is that he’s nowhere near as clever as he thinks he is.
In fact, if he was just half as good as his ego tells him he is, he’d be France’s greatest ever ruler. Instead, he’s just an arrogant, overly emotional pipsqueak in charge of a second-rate nation. The fact is that international leaders don’t respect Emmanuel Macron – he was completely blindsided by us, America and Australia when it came to the AUCUS submarine deal, Michel Barnier is going to stand against him at the next election, I very much doubt Xi Jinping or Vladimir Putin are quaking in their boots at the prospect of a meeting with old Emmanuel.
And he’s been easily outfoxed numerous times – he threatened to cut the power off to Jersey and allowed some fishermen to blockade the port, Boris sent in a couple of warships and the French, in classic fashion, legged it back home before lunchtime. He invested heavily in a French Covid vaccine…that didn’t work.
He savaged the Astra Zeneca jab to a Europe-wide audience, and now much of that continent has extreme restrictions, spiralling covid cases and mandatory vaccinations. He’s been outfoxed here as well. Boris went public with this letter and it’s backed Macron into a corner. And he’s shown what his biggest weakness is – his ego, his arrogance. Instead of accepting the reasonable offers by the British government, he threw a wobbly, uninvited Patel from his migrant party and told the entire world that he doesn’t care whether or not children drown in the Channel.
The international community has to come out and condemn this now – Napoleon at times led France to glory, Macron is leading them towards becoming international pariahs.