France Descending Into Militarized State Ruled By Fear

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Tourists pause to take pictures as French military patrol near the Notre Dame Cathedral (not seen) the day after a series of deadly attacks in Paris, France, November 14, 2015. (Yves Herman/Reuters)
In the wake of the mass murder in French city of Nice, President Francois Hollande and his Prime Minister Manuel Valls have reiterated dire warnings that France is in a permanent state of war.

Valls quoted by Le Journal du Dimanche said: “I have always told the truth about terrorism: a war is underway, there will be more attacks. It’s hard to say, but other lives will be lost.”

Nine months ago, Hollande made similar grim forebodings of “France at war” following the Paris gun attacks in which 130 people were killed by five jihadist suicide attackers.

The State of Emergency declared after the November 13 atrocity was extended at the weekend by a further three months after 84 people were killed in Nice on Thursday night. In that attack a man plowed a 20-ton articulated truck into thousands of pedestrians watching the Bastille Day fireworks display in the French Riviera resort.

Some 120,000 police and troops are now reportedly deployed across France, up from the already record high level of 115,000 security personnel on alert during the Euro 16 football championship. A further 12,000 police reservists are being called called up.

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