Nerve Gas and Police Brutality Against the Yellow Vests

French President Emmanuel Macron promised to crack down hard on the Yellow Vest protesters, and based on what happened in France over the weekend, he seems to have followed through. A ban on demonstrations by the movement in many cities also reportedly reduced the size of the crowds that took to the streets — down to 33,000 according to official estimates.

The level of police brutality directed at anybody and everybody connected with the demonstrations has caused a widespread loathing of the police. Recently a statistic was released saying that an average of two French cops commit suicide every week. In a comment on social media about police brutality against the Yellow Vests, someone said that there aren’t enough cop suicides. That sums up the current popular attitude towards the police.

Now that Mr. Macron has decided to tighten the screws on French citizens, he’d better be willing to tighten them all the way, as far as they can go, because this looks like a pre-revolutionary situation to me. The only thing that might quell the unrest would be an utterly ruthless application of lethal force by the state. And even that might not succeed, given how far out of control this thing has spun.

The first video below is an account of what happened in Paris last weekend. It was originally written in French, and then translated into German to be read out on YouTube. In it you’ll hear a description of the deliberate and systematic increase in the level of brutality used by the police against the demonstrators. One of the weapons deployed appears to be the new gas that we saw being tested by a tank in a previous video. Based on reports by its victims, it seems to be some sort of nerve agent.

Many thanks to MissPiggy for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

The second video shows some of the action in Besançon, a city in eastern France. I don’t know what kind of projectiles are in those police guns pointed at the protesters we see at the end of the video. Rubber bullets? Flashballs? Gas canisters? Something else…?

Many thanks to Ava Lon for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript #1:

00:00   The following message was sent to me by a viewer and I translated it:
00:05   We drove to Paris to document events and to support and help the Yellow Vests.
00:13   Especially those beaten and wounded by police.
00:19   We left early in order to arrive on time in Paris. It was very calm.
00:24   There were a few checkpoints that we had to go through.
00:27   Otherwise it was quick and easy to arrive at the Arc de Triomphe.
00:31   It didn’t take very long before we were shot at with gas grenades.
00:35   Just before there had been a scuffle that the police stopped.
00:40   The police divided the crowd into groups and immediately shot them with gas grenades and water cannons.
00:48   What was different this time from other Saturdays, the police started shooting demonstrators very early.
00:56   This time chemical substances were used.
00:59   It was a far more aggressive gas than what is normally used. Not tear gas.
01:04   Several people passed out, bleeding from the nose and mouth.
01:09   It appears that this caused veins to burst in some people.
01:13   The French demonstrators said that they were being intentionally harmed.
01:19   The riot tanks were spraying people with a white substance, a kind of gas.
01:24   Police were herding people into certain areas where they were obviously
01:29   targeted with this gas which was being sprayed on them.
01:33   The French police held people in their control. In that situation, they weren’t able to leave on their own.
01:41   This gas was far more aggressive than normal. It felt like fire.
01:47   It had a very acrid smell and it hurt. I was temporarily unconscious from it.
01:54   Other demonstrators rescued me out of the dangerous situation.
01:58   Immediately afterwards I fell over, because I was unable to stand. Today I still suffer from the side effects.
02:08   Obviously, this gas affects the central nervous system and prevents the body from reacting.
02:16   It makes breathing nearly impossible and it causes nausea.
02:20   It feels like your body is burning from within and it gives you diarrhea.
02:26   The heart and the circulatory system also slow down.
02:30   Many demonstrators that I spoke to afterwards told me they had nightmares.
02:36   Many of them cannot remove the images from their heads.
02:39   Weapons of war are being used against peaceful demonstrators.
02:43   There is no causal connection for this police violence. They are even shooting from helicopters.
02:50   Police purposefully herd demonstrators into small alleyways in order to shoot them with this gas.
02:58   Among these demonstrators are children, the elderly and the handicapped who
03:02   have taken to the streets to defend their rights.
03:06   The police are also making it difficult for those trying to administer first aid.
03:10   They are not permitted to reach the injured.
03:13   New types of grenades are also being used that have even worse effects than before.
03:17   In Paris, some business owners in these small alleyways keep their shops open so demonstrators
03:24   can escape and rescue themselves from the gas.
03:28   These shop owners are also targeted by police, dragged into the streets and physically abused.
03:35   Some them had serious injuries, but weren’t permitted to be taken away (to seek medical attention).
03:41   It appears that Macron is now cracking down hard on demonstrators.
03:46   We also saw the blockade dressed in black, those known as Antifa, setting cars on fire in Paris.
03:52   They were also destroying shops. Looting and setting them on fire.
03:56   They are the ones building barricades and throwing stones at the police. It is NOT the normal demonstrators.

Video transcript #2:

00:08   Following a Yellow Vests rally in Besançon, a protester fell victim to a baton blow from a
00:12   police officer. The prefecture explains this by saying that the sequence “is taken out of context”.
00:16   In order to avoid such an interpretation, we decided to publish the “raw” [recording]
00:20   well before the sequence in question. Our one and only goal —
00:25   as journalists — being to show the facts and nothing but the facts.
01:36   Don’t stay behind me, stay in front of me, but not behind. I’m protected by
01:40   by the patrol (?)…
01:44   Make some space… Just in case they charge at us.
01:48   You’ll be fine. You OK?
01:53   Stand there to make shade [for the victim]
01:57   No: shade, shade. Breathe calmly.
02:01   Stay here, don’t move. They don’t touch the “medics”.
02:05   Don’t move.
02:09   I have some coke if he wants [a drink] right away
02:13   …quietly.
02:30   Would you like something? Because…
02:38   The car is charging from the behind.
02:43   It doesn’t matter. We are here. We are here. No, don’t move. Yes…
02:47   We stay here, we don’t move.
03:07   Get out of here! Get out of here!…
03:20   They are crazy!
03:24   What are you doing?!…
03:28   What is he doing to your colleague?! Aren’t you stopping it? …
03:32   why did he give him a swing of the baton right there?…
03:37   The shame!… Are you OK?
03:41   First aid! First aid!
03:45   First aid!
03:57   First aid!…
04:02   He got hit by the baton!
04:10   Careful, they are gassing us!
04:14   Are they c**ts or what?
04:22   You bunch of faggots, we have done nothing wrong!
04:27   …sick!… Calm down! Calm down!…
04:35   This is a disgrace! A disgrace! What are you doing?!…
04:39   I’m ashamed [of you]!… Back off! Back off!
04:43   Leave her alone, sir!
04:52   Calm down! It’s not helpful to get angry, sir!…
04:56   … come with me, come with me…
05:04   Quiet! Sir, calm down, calm down, it’s pointless…
05:09   Get out of here! Get out! A**holes!
05:13   What a disgrace! I’m ashamed [of you]!…
05:21   Get out of here! …
05:25   He’s taking his gun out!
05:30   Calm down! Stop!…
05:34   Stop! Yeah, take out your gun, you moron! Criminal! Stop!
05:38   Bunch of criminals! Calm down! It’s pointless
05:42   Go ahead! Go ahead! Thug! Thug!
05:46   Get out of here! This is going to kill you!… Thug!
05:51   …It’s OK, It’s OK… Get out of here!
05:55   [protester:] You are totally crazy! [cop:] Go home!
05:59   [protester:] I AM home here! It’s France, MY home!
06:03   This is a dictatorship! France, it’s ME! It’s HERE!

13 thoughts on “Nerve Gas and Police Brutality Against the Yellow Vests

  1. Inside every socialist is a Stalinist wanting to come out. Socialism is a mechanism for total control of everything by the state. As an economic theory, socialism is self-contradictory disastrous. A socialist government cannot exist without coercion and suppression of free discussion. This is because socialists promise prosperity and produce poverty and deprivation. A socialist government cannot remain in power without bringing in Stalin. And socialism is all about power.

    Macron is simply being a good socialist by ordering the police to use escalating violence and brutality. The more violence used by the police, the more most police dislike the task. But, there is the brown shirt corps that will happily crack heads or use nerve gas on protesters. I suppose it’s very much up in the air whether the Macron storm troopers will win, or there will be a truly revolutionary uprising including the police and military line officers. My guess is that the other European Stalinists like Merkel , Swedish Prime Minister Lofven, the Dutch Prime Minister, etc, etc, will send moral if not material help. The nerve gases used may very well have come from other EU sources.

    In the US, AOC wears red lipstick, plays the clown, and flashes her eyes at the camera, but she would be as enthusiastic a Stalinist as Macron if she actually gained power, and then saw it threatened by popular dissent. Michael Moore calls her the future of the Democrat party, and could very well be correct.

    • I don’t think Macron is much of a Stalinist, or a man for that matter, but his handlers provide a spine when one is needed. “Evita from the Bronx” has a much more developed understanding of what power is and how to use it. I have no doubt that she would be a far more effective leader at crushing dissent than Macron ever will be. While it is very seldom that I agree with Michael Moore on anything, I do agree that she is the future of the democrat party as it continues its metamorphosis into the socialist party.

      • The thing is, Breakfast Club Evita is exceptionally stupid. Everything she utters is stunningly uninformed, childish, and idiotic. It’s the marionettists pulling her strings that make her dangerous.

        • Her utterances are deliberately dumbed down to the level of her followers comprehension. It is deliberate; intended to endear herself to them. Same with her useage of social media; she gives the impression that she is “one of them”, while all the while she has a very good education and a not-insignificant amount of money already squirreled away.

          Anyway, it is not her level of intelligence or assumed lack therof that concerns me, instead it is her understanding of the mob and her willingness to use the power she has in order to leverage it into even more power that I find worrisome. In politics, strength of will counts for a lot more than brainpower. And it is the same reason the dinosaurs that currently rule her party fear her too. They are already extinct and don’t even realize it, and she is the asteroid hurtling in that is about to make it so.

  2. It doesn’t surprise me in the least that Macron would use something like a nerve gas, after all the West didn’t shy away from using chemical weapons and very brutal means to get rid of unpleasant oposition in the world or at least try to (didn’t really work in Syria).

    Perhaps not South Africa but France is the final test run to beat us to submission.

    The real disappointment is the police, though. Originally there was quite a number of officers that showed sympathy to the protesters. Or perhaps those were stripped of their postions and now only antifa-sympathizers are left in the police force.
    Maybe we should fundraise some gas masks for the French, they’re currently on the front line for all of us European folk.

    • The US anti-federalist opponents of the US Constitution argued that a standing army was the gateway to tyranny. A standing army had no local loyalties, and could probably overwhelm unorganized local resistance. Note well that in the Constitution, the national guard can be federalized at the discretion of the President.

      A national police force, such as the FBI (I don’t know the French equivalent) functions in the same way: a well-financed army without regional loyalties answerable only to the federal government.

      I seem to recall that the British local constabularies are all appointed by, and responsible to, a central authority, which would largely explain their lethargy towards the systematic, long-term rape of English girls.

      The French police are probably not going to rise up as an opposition force (they’d get creamed by the army, which has far better fighting capabilities,) but they probably are ripe for subversion.

  3. At some point a French patriot will say enough, and start shooting back at these stormtrooper police.

      • Eventually the blood will be shed.But I know who will win.
        D ..what do you think.Getting gased ,hit,humiliated is fun?
        No long they will have enough and macron will have to flee the country

  4. The use of any nerve agent is a violation of the 1925 Geneva convention outlawing its use in warfare. France is a signatory to that convention. Obviously, Macron doesn’t care.

    • I’m not sure the Geneva Convention covers civil insurrections, which I’m sure is how the French government would classify these protests. Nowadays international treaties arrogate unto themselves the right to dictate the internal affairs of signatories (e.g. the Paris Climate Accords), but in the old days an international instrument would only cover affairs between and among sovereign national states.

  5. When this Yellow Vest thing started I heard there were generals
    in the French army who spoke out against Macron using force against the Yellow Vests. This whole situation is starting to feel like Spain in the mid 1930’s in the run up to their civil war. Could we see patriotic elements of the French Army take the side of the Yellow Vests against Macron’s police? Shades of Franco’s Regulares versus the leftist Republic’s Assault Guards…

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