There has been much talk this week of l'image de la France ... celle qu'on aime, celle qu'on n'aime pas. In France's new ambassador to Tunisia, we have a little of both. Watch this clip:
The good news is that this young diplomat speaks Arabic. The bad news, which begins at about 3:00 of the clip, is that he seems to be à l'image du Président Sarkozy, who appointed him and whom he served previously at the Interior Ministry. The veneer of diplomatic politeness falls away, and we have a very Sarkozyesque confrontation with the press, puncuated with aggressive franchements, accusations directed at reporters for asking questions débiles, etc. etc. To judge by appearances, M. Boillon is very young and still unseasoned (although he served as ambassador to Iraq from 2009 to 2011). Perhaps we should allow him time to grow into his job and acquire the diplomatic niceties. But already Tunisians are demonstrating to have him recalled.