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Protecting the Games: France's sport as a giant Potemkin village

France is not only shaken by political turmoil, the far-right RN could take power even before the Olympic Games in Paris. French sport is characterised by mismanagement and scandals almost everywhere. One of many pressing questions: Where did the audit of French fencing go?

Olympic hosts, propagandists, builders of Potemkin Olympic villages: sports minister Amélie Oudéa-Castera, Napoleon Emmanuel Macron (Paris 2024, French Alps 2030), Communist Godfather Xi Jinping (Beijing 2008, Beijing 2022). (Photo: Eliot Blondet / ABACAPRESS.COM)

Since March 2023, the French Fencing Federation (FFE) has been under investigation by the Inspection générale de l'Éducation, du Sport et de la Recherche (IGÉSR), the General Inspectorate of Education, Sport and Research. 15 months later and despite a deficit approaching one million euros, no results have yet been published because of political instructions.

We close the lid. This expression, used by some current and past employees of the Ministry of Sports, summarizes the state of French sport a few weeks before Paris 2024. Politically, the Élysée was clear: it was not necessary to make waves, even if it meant covering particularly embarrassing files.

With seven sports leaders accused of perjury and a report by a committee of inquiry of the National Assembly pointing out the inter-so-so, inaction, bad governance and the omertà of its federations – particularly in terms of sexual abuse of minors – the French sport family has been shaken like never before publicly recently. Athletics, basketball, canoeing, horseback riding, gymnastics, football, kick-boxing, wrestling, rugby, taekwondo, tennis, no discipline has been spared by scandals, and especially not fencing, the first historical provider of medals for France at the Olympic Games.

On the road to Paris 2024: “omerta at all levels”, a “rape culture” and “systemic dysfunctions” in sport
France’s sport has received an increase in funding for Paris 2024. President Macron wants more medals. France also receives the 2030 Winter Games. The other side of the coin: the sports system is dominated by scandals and mismanagement at all levels, as a breathtaking investigation report documents.
Welcome to the French Olympic tax haven!
Behind the massive IOC propaganda, the Paris Olympic Games are based on France’s extreme submission to the Gods of Olympism. Tax gifts, labour law, princely treatment, everything has been done to convince and seduce Bach and his supporters. A boon for the IOC.
Broken promises
Days before the Paris Olympics, the usual problems are raising concerns. Budget overruns, security, outdated facilities, and transportation chaos. These issues bring to mind the campaign promises never kept by a government that has decided to shut the lid on all sporting mishaps before the Games.

Embroiled in an unprecedented crisis, described in THE INQUISITOR last November, the French Fencing Federation (FFE) was feverishly awaiting the conclusions of the general inspection mission commissioned by the Ministry in March 2023.

Touche fatale: what’s going on in French fencing?
A few month before the Olympic Games, heralded by the IOC as a renewal of the movement, French sports are still tainted by the most serious scandals at all levels. The latest instance being the mysterious departure of the former president of the fencing federation, Bruno Gares.

Problem, almost sixteen months later, no results were announced. An abnormal silence since the IGÉSR had simply taken five months to deliver its report on the largest French federation, that of football. How can we explain that the huge FFF could be auditioned in a few months, but that the small FFE could not be auditioned in almost a year and a half?

Emmanuel Macron’s instructions

Eager to show the whole world the (sporting) power of France, President Emmanuel Macron had announced a goal of 80 medals for Paris 2024 and a place in the top 5 nations. A colossal figure, especially compared to the last Olympics (42 medals in Rio for a seventh place, 33 medals in Tokyo for an eighth place), revised downwards according to the Minister of Sports, Amélie Oudéa-Castera, who still evokes this top 5 but no longer evokes a precise number of charms, except gold. "We must go from 10 gold medals in Tokyo to 16 in Paris," she told Ouest France.

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Welcome to the French Olympic tax haven!

Welcome to the French Olympic tax haven!

Behind the massive IOC propaganda, the Paris Olympic Games are based on France’s extreme submission to the Gods of Olympism. Tax gifts, labour law, princely treatment, everything has been done to convince and seduce Bach and his supporters. A boon for the IOC.

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