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Thursday, May 3, 2007

Conservative French presidential candidate kills four, injures ten during televised debate

French media declares 'distinguished victory' for far-right candidate after two-hour debate marked by long sentences, four murders

Luc Attmi
La Lune de la presse internationale


During the televised presidential debate yesterday evening between the two French presidential candidates, who face a runoff election on Sunday, conservative nominee Nicolas Sarkozy opened fire on the audience in mid-debate, killing four people and wounding ten others. The outburst of violence was caused primarily by the persistent, aggressive questioning of the Socialist candidate, Ségolène Royal. Thrown off and flustered after having been caught in flagrant lies and disinformation, the Union pour un mouvement populaire (UMP) conservative party candidate took out an automatic weapon and began firing into the crowd. Security forces intervened to evacuate the remaining participants, before Mr. Sarkozy was allowed to continue speaking and resume the debate.

After the incident French media highlighted "the power and the conviction" of Mister Sarkozy, declaring that his violent acts were largely the "key event" of the debate which could ultimately give way to a "moral and just presidency" if Sarkozy wins the presidential election on Sunday. UMP supporters also applauded Sarkozy's actions, explaining that the "power of his personality" was obvious when he made the decision to use deadly force against innocent people.

"This only shows us what we've already seen throughout the entire campaign," explained Anne Equedotte, a UMP supporter. "Now no one can have any doubts about the power and the convictions of Mister Sarkozy, and I hope that the people will remember this when they cast their votes on Sunday. I'd like to remind my fellow French citizens that if Sarkozy isn't elected, we might have a lot more debates like this that will allow us to demonstrate our convictions, as we saw yesterday evening."

The Socialist candidate responded to the violence with long, precise sentences and complicated ideas, which seemingly did not interest the television audience. According to analysts, the Socialist candidate was "way too into her thoughts and not enough into entertaining the audience," which could hurt her chances Sunday.

"In a sense Mrs. Royal knows how to debate, but Mr. Sarkozy gained a net advantage when he took out his weapon and shot the audience members. Decidedly, Mrs. Royal doesn't have the same strong conviction that the UMP candidate does, and thus she lost the debate to the right-wing candidate," commented Destin Toulouse, journalist for the French newspaper Le Figaro.


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