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Ailing France nears a moment of reckoning Add to ...

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France is in a terrible state and President Hollande’s putsch against the left-wing ministers in his Socialist government is a desperate and far-too-late attempt to put the country right. The new administration, purged of Arnaud Montebourg, the maverick who threatened Arcelor Mittal with nationalization over its closure of a loss-making steel plant, won’t make a dent in the country’s soaring unemployment and ballooning national debt but it is least an acknowledgment that France’s underlying problem is deeply political.

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