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French President Macron Claims Iran-US Deal to Promote Himself

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Paris is also not stupid: they realize that Tehran is truly on the brink of pulling out of the JCPOA and not returning for years. (That's the only "within weeks" which is realistic here.)

Macron is also motivated by the short-term concern of avoiding costly escalations: an economic shock would push France - the poster child of the little-reported economic Lost Decade in the Eurozone into recession.

After the surprise notion that Trump and Rouhani would meet in Washington before autumn began to wear off, it became clear that Macron was playing to his domestic audience: he was trying to project success amid his never-ending and ever-failing plans for more punishing austerity, the likelihood of an upcoming recession even without any Persian Gulf turmoil, and his unprecedented repression of the Yellow Vests. Talk is cheap, and Macron would have said anything at the G7 to make himself appear not domestically unsupported, economically incompetent and a puppet of foreign interests, all of which he certainly is (per the average French person).

Zarif and Iran immediately apprehended that his wild claim was classic French window-dressing intended for the West's domestic audience only: "A meeting between Rouhani and Trump is unimaginable," said Zarif. "What American and French officials say concerns themselves," he said.

Being a guest at a G7 summit was nice, but Iran's position remains unchanged and crystal clear: there can be no renegotiation of the painstaking and protracted negotiations which were the JCPOA, and also that Washington must lift sanctions (an act of war) before more talks can possibly occur.

US Secretary of State John Bolton affirmed the obvious - the US has no intention of stopping its war, of lifting sanctions, of pursing peace" therefore neither side believes there can be negotiations "within weeks".

The only person who may be surprised by this outcome is Emmanuel Macron.

Iran will certainly wait years before even backing down just a bit, because they have already waited decades for acceptance of their ideals of 1979. But Iran doesn't care about superficial appearances, like Macron does - Iranian civil servants operate in the real world of values, not the ether of stars and egos.

Macron reviving de Gaulle? More like Hillary in pants

French media is still tipsy off the notion that Macron has "revived Gaullism" by returning to forgotten French independence from the US (only via glomming on to Iran's genuine independence, of course).

Firstly, de Gaulle had infinitely more integrity (he reimbursed state coffers for the sweets his grandchildren ate) than Macron and his giant lobster -eating ministers, but the idea that de Gaulle was not a mad bomber (Algeria, Syria, Vietnam, etc.) of a neo-imperialist is promoted only among nostalgic French people.

Secondly, the rabidly pro-Brussels Macron can never be assumed to be doing something which puts the patriotic interests of the French people at the very top, whereas de Gaulle was a nationalist (which is not the same thing as a "patriot").

French media viewed Macron's Iran-related efforts as more proof of the inherent, never-ending superiority of French diplomacy. "It's unprecedented and given the context it's pretty audacious," said a French diplomatic source. Unlike France, Iran is not a country where audaciousness is foolishly viewed as a certain virtue.

The New York Times summed up the essential hollowness of Macron's showy efforts amid a context of serious politics with the headline, "How Emmanuel Macron Positioned Himself as Star of the G7 Show".

To put a new spin on the old adage, "Beauty may enter, but only virtue may stay": Personality may get elected, but only humble civil service can stay. Macron seems to believe that revealing, behind-the-scenes media access to the president and unflagging Broadway-style energy is going to impress the average French citizen more than positive economic results and respecting their opinion on public policies.

The irony was that the theme of this year's G7 was "global inequality", and yet that has always been the primary demand of the Yellow Vests - Macron stole their idea and repaid them with tear gas and prison sentences.

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Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has (more...)

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