France: Jean-Luc Mélenchon's speech at the 2013 Fete L´Humanité
(Note: to improve the resolution of the subtitles in each, after pressing "play", click on the "cog" at the bottom of the video, and increase the setting for "quality" to 360p. Then restart the video.)
Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Front de Gauche leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon addressed the fete of left newspaper L´Humanité in Paris on September 15, 2013. In this six-part video (above and below) Mélenchon discusses French foreign policy in relation to Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, the colossal failures of "Chicago School" [neoliberal] economics, the attacks of the European Union, the Front de Gauche's program when elected, religion and politics, and the front's opposition to militarism.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon was cabinet minister responsible for professional education in Lionel Jospin's Socialist Party government (2000-02) as well as a member of the French Senate (1986-2009). He was a long-time executive member of the Socialist Party (1977-2008). He left the Socialist Party in 2008, remarking that socialism is a conviction, not a career. He created the Parti de Gauche (Left Party) which is part of a wider electoral coalition, the Front de Gauche (Left Front). This umbrella organisation is similar to Syriza in Greece and Die Linke in Germany.
In May 2012, Jean-Luc Mélenchon ran for the French presidency. In the first round of the election, he secured 11.1% of the vote nationally (over 4 million votes) in the teeth of total media blackout on his political program, and many malicious misrepresentations. Mélenchon has been a member of the European Parliament since 2009.