11 July 2017
One hundred years since the United States entered World War I, Bastille Day 2017 was supposed to not only celebrate France’s national day, but also honour the historical cooperation between Paris and Washington.
The attendance of President Donald Trump may change all that.
Trump is set to join Friday’s national holiday celebrations, which mark the storming of the royal fortress of Bastille in 1789 that was a key turning point in the French Revolution.
He was invited last month by French President Emmanuel Macron, a leader more than 30 years his junior who has criticized Trump on various issues.
Despite this invitation, anti-Trump protesters have promised to give the U.S. President a less-than-cordial greeting when he touches down for France’s most important national holiday.
Activists from the “Paris Against Trump” group announced a series of events Monday designed to let Trump know he wasn’t welcome.
On the eve of the holiday, which the French simply call “14 juillet,” there will be a “No Trump Zone” featuring music and dancing in the Place de la Republique, one of the largest and most prominent squares in the capital.
“Trump is not welcome in Paris,” said the event’s Facebook page. “We are opposed to his positions on the climate crisis, his international politics against migrants, his sexist speeches and behavior, his Islamophobia and racist remarks, his military plans around the world and his neo-liberalism and capitalism.”
On Bastille Day itself, there will be a march titled “Don’t Let Your Guard Down Against Trump” that starts from the from the Place de Clichy.
According to organizers, “an American contingent” will be part of the demonstrations.
The U.S. president should be no stranger to Europeans protesting his visits. During the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last week, there were violent clashes between demonstrators and police.