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Yes, it's the famous (or rather, infamous) "odeurs" quote. Let me assure you that this quote is not forgotten in France and comes out regularly.

It taints Chirac's otherwise admirable record of not compromising with the Front National, one of the few things I will give him credit for.

As a note, it came out at a time when the country was debating exactly the same thing as today - what to do with the banlieues. The problems were the exact same as today (possibly worse as this was just after the terrible period in the 80s with massive layoffs in thebig old industries like steel, coal, heavy manufacturing which put a big number of immigrant workers on the unemployment rolls), and the political debate not much different.

It's just one more argument to say that Sarkozy is Chirac redux, 15-20 years later.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Nov 9th, 2005 at 04:55:36 AM EST

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