in Paris, the demonstrators try to keep the flame alive after eight weeks of mobilization

Were we living the last jolt of a summer movement or the beginning of a soap opera polluting the return to government? From the Elysée Palace, we carefully scrutinized the rise of demonstrations on Saturday, September 4, a few days after the start of the school year and the return of holidaymakers to Paris. “The composition is very heterogeneous, public support is declining and the French will soon be 50 million vaccinated”, listed, confident, an adviser to Emmanuel Macron. Finally, the declining mobilization is confirmed: around 140,000 people demonstrated in France according to the Ministry of the Interior (against around 160,000 people a week before), including 18,500 in Paris (a little more than on August 28 and its 14,500 demonstrators counted).

Even in the minority, those who have walked in the capital dream of making these meetings lasting. At the foot of the Eiffel Tower, Florian Philippot swings from right to left on the air of ” It’s good for morale “. “There is no shortness of breath, people are hot”, wants to believe the leader of the Patriots and presidential candidate, who wanted to make this Saturday ” a strong moment to mark the occasion ” and revive the momentum. “You are heroes! “, he harangues standing on a truck, before passing the microphone to lawyer Fabrice Di Vizio: According to Minister Darmanin 32, you are according to BFMTV 112, according to reality we are millions everywhere in France! “

The small crowd gathered on the Champ-de-Mars sets in motion in a disparate hustle and bustle, where former “yellow vests”, sovereignists, abstainers and families meet. Christie, disguised as Marianne, parades for the 42nd time since the first Patriots gathering. And is about to continue “All fall, in the snow and in the rain”. “Even if it takes a thousand years! “, adds Karim, who came from Essonne to hold the banner ” Freedom “, close to Florian Philippot, against the “Coronafolie”.

A majority is following the wave without partisan affiliation. “Do not crucify our children”, we can see on the huge cross held by Francis, alias “Jesus”. Shaggy hair and holy tunic, this “healer” has pain in his hips from wearing his 35 kg crucifix in all events since 2018. He has found a lighter one for the next few weeks. Laëtitia, 42, a banking executive living in the 16th arrondissement, walks with her 8-year-old son for the first time. It will be released every Saturday until the government “Back off”. This mother has never been Antivax most “Children are something else”. “Protect your children! “, a protester yells into a megaphone.

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