This is the start of a revolution
Macron on the Brink: Water Cannon, Tear Gas, and Stun Grenades as ‘Yellow Jackets’ Storm Security Cordons
France’s uprising of the “yellow jackets”
Tear Gas and Water Cannons in Paris as Grass-Roots Protest Takes Aim at Macron
'There Is an Atmosphere of Civil War.' France's Yellow Jackets Are Driving Fury at Macron
"State of insurrection" as fuel tax riots engulf central Paris
Unrest erupted in several towns and cities across France, from Charleville Mezieres in the northeast to Marseille in the south. In the Riviera city of Nice trucks blocked access to the airport, and in the central town of Puy-en-Velay the police headquarters was set on fire.
The centre of Paris was on lockdown tonight after masked protesters stole an assault rifle from police, clashed with riot squads and set fire to cars and Christmas trees on the Champs-Elysees in furious demonstrations against the French government.
Protesters said today's actions were 'the start of a revolution' worse than the mass strikes and occupation of universities and factories during the 1968 French Revolution when the country was on the cusp of civil war.
Fires and clouds of tear gas covered the French capital from early morning until late in the evening, in some of the worst violence ever seen in the French capital as more than 5,000 demonstrators brought chaos to Paris for the second week running.
“There is an atmosphere of civil war,” said Thierry Paul Valette, a self-appointed spokesman for the movement, over lunch with TIME on Friday. “Macron has a big responsibility now. He can either calm the situation, or enflame it,” he says. “The president might be in Argentina. But he is not in exile.”
The links have many photos and videos. The main stream media in the USA has very little coverage of this. This movement seems to not be dying down, and is not restricted to Paris. Over the past few decades France has always had protests and strikes. This one appears to be different. It is not being driven by unions, or political groups. It is supported by most of the populace and is self organizing on social media. There are no clear leaders. It will be interesting to see if it dies down as winter comes, or if it becomes more violent as the French government fails to deal with the situation.