Sex, scandal and security in the underskirts of France: a case study
There is something especially extravagant, exotic and even deadly about the many scandals and “affairs” which have emerged from the circles of power around the Elysée Palace since World War II.
Some arose from “official” policy and use of the black arts during the turbulent post-War years and the Cold War up to the 1990s.
Others emerged when “unofficial” initiatives by specialists in dirty tricks went wrong: possibly the case in the “suicide” of Robert Boulin and the complex if clumsy “cover up” over decades.
Just feet away from the president’s office in the palace, there was a gory suicide which some say was an assassination. The victim, tied to the president by occult links from the wartime Resistance , was a rich “eminence grise”, a “fixer” and keeper of dangerous secrets which he was about to reveal.
A writer who investigated the case described the webs of deception reaching out from the palace, as “terrifying, cruel, archaic.
Such “affairs” are frequently mixed up with other scandals, political or financial, the link being bedroom liaisons and pillow secrets, adultery, mistresses and revenge. In a powerhouse of political and personal vendettas, the resulting scandals result either in cover-ups with threats, or long court cases leaving as many enigmas as mysteries.
Extracts from an emergency statement and press conference by the then President Francois Hollande on April 10, 2013 announcing laws to fight corruption in government and politics, tax evasion and money-laundering:
The statement used extraordinarily strong terms to warn that the state is in peril from a breach of confidence between people and government.
He concluded with these words:
“I also want to leave reforms which will have enabled the French people to renew a link, their confidence in those who represent them. Because if the Republic is weakened, if ministers are suspected, then the Republic itself is threatened. We are at risk, we are in peril. I see this not only in France; we see it everywhere in Europe.”