French Socialist politician and labour leader Gérard Filoche has been unceremoniously booted from his party over an anti-Semitic tweet that targeted President Emmanuel Macron.
Filoche, a member of the Socialists’ national bureau, took to Twitter last Friday night to belittle Macron by depicting the French leader with his arms outstretched over the Earth, wearing what appears to be a red-swathed Nazi armband but with the swastika replaced by a dollar sign.
The image showed the looming forms behind Macron iof three leading French Jews — the economist Jacques Attali, the investor Patrick Drahi, and the banker Jacob Rothschild — flanked by the American and Israeli flags. Filoche added as a comment, “A dirty guy, as all the French people will know soon enough.”
— Le 47 avec Macron (@Le47avecMacron) November 20, 2017
“On the move towards global chaos,” the caption read, a reference to Macron’s En Marche (“On the Move”) movement that swept him to the presidency earlier this year.
The post was quickly deleted before the far-left figurehead told AFP of his regret, saying: “I’ve presented my apologies”.
“What more do you want?” Filoche added, noting that he was one of the founders of the SOS Racism anti-discrimination association and therefore should be presumed innocent by association.
Instead he now faces charges of “provoking hatred or violence against a person based on his origins or his ethnic, national, racial or religious affiliation,” AFP reported. The French-based International League against Racism and Anti-Semitism (Licra) and the CRIF umbrella grouping of French Jewish organisations have said they will file suit, as has Attali.
For its part, the Socialist Party denounced the tweet it called “intolerable, inexcusable and unacceptable” which “tarnishes the basic values of Socialism” and which it considers “a cause for exclusion”.
Filoche was not entirely without his supporters. The Algemeiner reports that one of the organizations in France to have leapt to his defense is the Trotskyist New Anti-Capitalist Party (NAP), a leading advocate of the BDS movement in France.
The NAP said it categorically denied that Filoche — himself a Trotskyist activist before he joined the PS — “is an antisemite.”
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