One student asked Zemmour about his belief that France’s defeat in the Seven Year’s War, between 1756 and 1763, was the beginning of the nation’s decline. “It seems like a long time ago,” the student said, “but for you, the history of France has been a succession of failed attempts to compensate for this defeat. Is there still any meaning in asserting the existence of a grand French destiny?”So for Zemmour, conservatism seems to be about longing for the days when France was the most powerful nation in the world and floundering around for some way to bring that feeling back.
Zemmour was ready with a response, observing that France’s colonial conquests were an attempt to compensate for that defeat. Today, he went on, French elites have decided, ignobly, that a new kind of French power can be obtained only by entwining the country within the European Union. For him, the process of writing his most recent book, he explained earlier that evening, recalled “the legend about the person who is dying and sees each major stage of his life pass before his eyes: Now we are reliving the main crises we experienced during a thousand years of history.”
Wednesday, February 6, 2019
A Real Conservative
Here's an interesting bit from a Times article on French conservative Éric Zemmour, one of those children of immigrants who has become fanatically anti-immigrant himself. People often say (the Times even says at one point) that Zemmour is a Bonapartist who longs for the days of Napoleon's victories, but apparently he really longs for an earlier period: