Due to rapidly-breaking developments and in order to facilitate readers’ access to the latest dispatches, we are publishing this article as it is being written. please check back for updates and additions.
To see a list of previous articles, enter “Ukraine” in the Search Box on the upper right, on The Trenchant Observer web site, and you will see a list in chronological order.
1) E.J. Dionne Jr, “Macron wins a reprieve — for himself and liberal democracy, Washington Post, April 10, 2022 (5:27 p.m. EDT);
2) “Résultats de la présidentielle 2022 en direct : le directeur de campagne de Jean-Luc Mélenchon reconnaît qu’il ne sera pas au second tour,” Le Monde, le 11 avril 2022
Official results with 97% of the vote counted.
Small “d” democrats in France, Europe and around the world breathed a sigh of relief as incumbent President Emmanuel Macron won 27.60% of the votes versus 23.41% of the vote for right-wing candidate Marine Le Pen, with 97% of the votes counted in the official tally. The candidates of the Republican, Socialist, Communist, and Green parties immediately endorsed Macron or indicated that they were going to vote for Macron and oppose Le Pen in the second round run-off election on April 24.
The results are of immense importance in the context on the ongoing Russian war in the Ukraine. While Le Pen downplayed her affinity for Putin in the campaign, even destroying a million pamphlets showing her with Putin, Russian banks had contributed to her campaign in the past and no one doubted that she was a Trojan horse for Putin.
Macron’s victory and the strong probability that he will win in the second round eliminates the huge potential liability for EU and NATO unity in supporting Ukraine that a Le Pen victory would represent.
The results today, consequently, are directly relevant to the future course of the war in Ukraine.
Viktor Orbán, following his reelection and the supermajority victory of his FIDEUSZ party in elections last Sunday in Hungary, is the sole EU member state with a leader friendly to Putin. Nonetheless, Orbán has gone along with EU sanctions against Russia, though since last week’s elections Hungary seems to be blocking further EU sanctions. Whether that will change is uncertain.
The president of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, won nearly 60% of the votes in elections last week, while his ruling Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) won 43.4% of votes in the parliamentary elections. Vucic has been pro-Putin. Serbia has been a candidate for EU membership since 2012.
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