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Joseph A. Harriss
Joseph A. Harriss is The American Spectator's Paris correspondent. One of his latest books was An American Spectator in Paris.
by | Apr 7, 2014

President François Hollande, France’s most unpopular leader in the 56-year history of the Fifth Republic, has just been slapped upside the head with the worst electoral drubbing his Socialist Party — which he himself led for decades — has ever…

by | Mar 31, 2014

France’s reputation for a relaxed attitude toward sex has long fed the world’s public opprobrium—and its secret fantasies. Mark Twain articulated the typical American attitude when he declared that “France has neither winter nor summer nor morals—apart from these drawbacks…

by | Mar 12, 2014

To understand Europe’s confused, conflicted reaction to Vladimir Putin’s brazen grab of real estate in its own back yard, look no further than the DCNS shipyards in the city of Saint Nazaire on France’s Atlantic coast. There riding at anchor…

by | Feb 14, 2014

You never really expect state visits to produce concrete results, and this week’s trip to the U.S. by French President François Hollande was no exception. They are inevitably precooked, prepackaged and — absent a gaffe by one or the other…

by | Jan 15, 2014

And to think they called him limp, soft, flaccid. The nickname behind his back was Flanby, a popular gelatinous French canned dessert. Wrong, all wrong. It turns out that President François Hollande demonstrates a firm, nay, veritably priapic virility that,…

by | Jan 6, 2014

Out of nowhere this autumn, the sunny little Provençal town of Brignoles (pop. 17,000) became the most famous place most people had never heard of. Halfway between Aix-en-Provence and Saint Tropez, this is the equivalent of flyover country—you won’t find…

by | Jan 17, 2013

Behind his back they giggled and called him Flanby. He might have been popular with the French press, always good for a quick quip and a laugh, but for them as for most French, François Hollande was a lightweight, a…

by | Jan 16, 2013

France and the U.S. are both undergoing social democratic onslaughts. That only intensified after last year’s elections. The difference, mes amis, is that French conservatives are putting up some surprisingly spunky resistance. The American middle class, by contrast, appears to…

by | Dec 18, 2012

FRANCE’S LATEST BOUT OF JIHAD JITTERS came in September when two small homemade bombs were thrown into a crowded Jewish grocery store in suburban Paris. The attack was largely symbolic—windows were broken, a few patrons injured—but it was yet another…

by | Nov 16, 2012

AS A CORRESPONDENT in Paris in the 1960s, I quickly learned that the surefire way to get the attention of the editors back home was to put “Charles de Gaulle” in the first paragraph. I could just see their eyes…

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