As part of a general crackdown on opponents to mass Muslim immigration, a private TV channel is forced by the French Media Authority to get rid of its leading conservative commentator. Eric Zemmour has long been a target of the Macron government, which has now succeeded in having him removed from his wildly popular daily news talk show.
REMIX NewsThe popular opposition columnist and journalist and author of several-best selling books, Eric Zemmour has been banned from broadcasting on a privately-owned TV station by a decision of the national media authority.
Zemmour is the author of The French Suicide and is known for his strong opposition against continued immigration to France. In a previous interview, he compared immigration in his country to a “demographic tsunami” and said he believes current immigration and integration policies have failed.
Zemmour was born in the Montreuil suburb of Paris to a Jewish family who fled Algeria during the war of independence. He’s been attacked on the street by his more rabid critics. He recently claimed that young male Muslim migrants from Africa and the Middle East were ‘killers and rapists’. Yet he and his co-host Christine Kelly, a strikingly intelligent Guadaloupian and a grand journalist in her own right, have tripled the ratings for Face à l’info, the primetime news chat show on CNews, the scrappiest French news channel. The chemistry between them, a Jewish man and a black woman, helps discredit the many accusations of racism.
Condemned by more conventional and conformist colleagues as a racist and fascist, Zemmour has been convicted three times under French hate-speech laws. He wears these convictions as a badge of honour. Professional rivals have attempted to ‘cancel’ him by pressuring advertisers to boycott his TV shows. They will doubtless step up their efforts should he decide to run for president.
Éric Zemmour, known for his extremely critical stances concerning President Emmanuel Macron and his government’s policies, especially, but not only, on the issues of mass Muslim immigration and the fight against crime, terrorism, and radical Islam, has had to bid farewell to the CNews channel where he debated with guests from all sides of the political scene for an hour a day from Monday to Friday, attracting to the channel am unprecedented growing number of viewers.
On Sept. 8, the French media authority, called Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel (CSA), asked “the audiovisual media to count Mr. Éric Zemmour’s interventions on the national political debate.” The CSA thus responded positively to a request made a few days earlier by a member of the presidential majority in parliament.
In France, politicians’ speaking time is regulated. Outside of election campaigns (which generally begin about six weeks before an election), the executive branch is entitled to one-third of the airtime of all political figures on each television channel and radio station.
As stated on the CSA’s website, “The rest of the total speaking time is distributed according to the principle of equity among the political parties and movements that express the major orientations of national political life. The criteria used by the CSA include the results in elections, the number, and categories of elected representatives, the size of parliamentary groups, or indications from opinion polls. The contribution of political parties to the political debate is also taken into account. ”
As can be seen, a large part of the speaking time in the public and private media is left to the discretion of the CSA, which also appoints the presidents of the public broadcasting companies. The members of the CSA are appointed by the speakers of the two chambers of parliament, while its president is appointed by the President of the Republic, which makes it a body under the influence of the ruling majority.
The CSA has therefore decided to treat the CNews columnist as if he were a politician, probably because it believed that Éric Zemmour could be a candidate in next year’s presidential election. Or maybe it is because his positions do not correspond to the line of thought of the government. Indeed, in its press release, the CSA explains that “Mr. Zemmour can now be considered, both by his positions and actions, and by the comments to which they give rise, as an actor in the national political debate.”
If CNews had wanted to keep the 20 hours per month of programming with Éric Zemmour, the TV channel would have had to offer proportional speaking time to the representatives of all the French political forces and to the executive branch, which was of course unfeasible. For this reason, the CSA’s decision, which came into effect on Sept. 9, amounted to an order for a private television station to part company with its most successful columnist.
Zemmour predicted a coming civil war in France unless something is done to stop the Muslim invasion.
In October 2019, Vincent Bolloré offered Éric Zemmour to appear on the news and debate program Face à l’info after several media outlets had decided not to work with Zemmour anymore following his remarks made at the “Convention of the Right”, a meeting organized by French conservative circles.
Zemmour, himself born of parents of Jewish Algerian origin, then stressed the threat posed by the temporary alliance of liberal totalitarianism and Islamic totalitarianism, which he compared to the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact between Nazi Germany and communist Russia. The target of both brands of totalitarianism, he emphasized, is primarily the White, heterosexual, Catholic French man, and the French state has become a tool in the hands of those who want to destroy the nation and replace the French with a different people, an alien civilization.”
In September 2020, Éric Zemmour was fined €10,000 by a court for his speech at the Convention of the Right, but the Paris Court of Appeal canceled the fine and released Zemmour of all charges on Sept. 8, 2021. In addition to the reaction of the CSA, which was to impose de facto censorship against Zemmour in all audiovisual media outlets, the French government reacted to the columnist’s victory on appeal by means of an appeal to the Court of Cassation by the public prosecutor’s office and the state-subsidized associations that filed civil suits (which is a specificity of the French system for limiting the freedom of expression in certain fields, and in particular concerning mass immigration).
Is it a coincidence of the calendar? Probably not, because we should probably see in both events the approach of the presidential campaign that should lead to the re-election of Emmanuel Macron despite his disastrous record on immigration and security, two subjects where French people mostly support the views of the likes of Éric Zemmour: the young anti-Islam activists Thaïs d’Escufon and Jérémie Piano, former spokespersons for the Génération Identitaire (Generation Identity) association dissolved by Emmanuel Macron’s current interior minister, were sentenced on Sept. 9 by a court of first instance to two months’ suspended imprisonment and €3,000 in fines each on the grounds of “incitement to racial hatred.”
In fact, the two young people, who spoke out on Remix News in the spring (see our interview with Jérémie Piano and the one with Thaïs d’Escufon), had declared in a video, as part of a militant action at the Spanish border to denounce the laxity of the French authorities in terms of migration, that France was facing “a migratory invasion”, that among the “thousands of illegal immigrants already in France” there are “probably thieves, rapists, and potential terrorists” (a fact which has unfortunately found its tragic confirmation many times in the news) and that it is “scandalous that a migrant can cross the border”.
This sad reality is now censored by French political authorities, in much the same way that the communist regimes of the former Eastern Bloc censored and repressed those denouncing their incompetence and failures.
Zemmour on the Cancel Culture