Monday, April 18, 2011

Franco-Italian Border Skirmish

Italy has issued temporary passports to several hundred Tunisian refugees who want to go to France. France yesterday suspended train service across the border at Vintimille to prevent their entry, although it says that it recognizes the "conditional" legality of the passports under the Schengen agreement. What I suspect is happening here is that France simply wants to publicize its "resistance" to the "influx" of refugees but recognizes that in the end they will come. So we'll see some skirmishes like yesterday's to minimize the number of mass arrivals with banners waving, but eventually individuals will filter in with their legal passports and that will be that, but the Front National will do what it can with the news.

UPDATE: The European Commission backs France.


Anonymous said...

The Fn's main blogger has already posted on this, although his take is difficult to discern at this point. He seems divided between approving the action but can't approve Sarkozy either.
(I do not give a link so as to avoid bringing him publicity).
Apparently Rome and Paris are at each other's throats, which is weird since Berlusconi and Sarkozy are pals. Perhaps grandstanding one against the other is mutually beneficial since both appear tough and nationalistic?

In other news, I found this excellent article in Slate:
which can be matched with Grumberg's "On achève bien les écoliers".

Arthur Goldhammer said...

Not such good pals anymore, according to this: