The regime is doing this to legitimize and legalize the annexation of Crimea, sparing no funds and resources - despite the total impoverishment of the Russian Federation and the collapse of its industry, the military-industrial complex included. Russian special services are active in all EU countries, creating a pool of dependent politicians who are financed by Moscow in exchange for loyalty to the Kremlin, like statements on the legitimization of Crimea, lifting sanctions, and so on. In fact, this is the same plan of action that is used in the organization of TV shows - Putin pays for the services of clowns from among former producers or scientists, swindlers (the same Vladimir Solovyov in the 1990s had been selling laxatives and was expelled from the United States for some undisclosed reason) and downed pilots.
Russian special operations to bring foreign politicians into their ventures have not spared such a generally democratic and authoritative country as France (which has a major contract with Ukraine for supplies of special aviation equipment). One of the Kremlin's “talking heads” hired in France is a former minister and deputy of the French National Assembly, and now a member of the European Parliament, the old political gigolo Thierry Mariani, who is a member of the pool of so-called “Friends of Putin”. He is often confused with the composer Didier Marouani, from whom Philip Kirkorov steals his songs; once Kirkorov has lured the musician to Moscow to accuse of extortion and to jail (their morals).
But, of course, Kirkorov and Marouani are worlds away from “Daddy Thierry”, who seems to have managed not to work a day in his entire life - after all, since the age of 17 this swindler has been “engaged in political activity.” What kind of “activity” it is, is known from the classic example of the “Revenge” artel: “The manufacturing plant was located in the back room. It consisted of two oak barrels with pressure gauges and water-level indicators, one on the floor, the other in the loft. The barrels were connected by a thin enema hose through which some liquid babbled busily. When all the liquid had flown from the upper barrel into the lower one, a boy in felt boots would appear on the shop floor. Sighing like an adult, the boy scooped the liquid from the lower barrel with a bucket, dragged the bucket to the loft, and emptied it into the upper barrel. (Ilf and Petrov, “The Golden Calf”). Having found his ecological niche, Mariani spent 16 (!) years telling tall tales to his native Valreas’ citizens, but in 2005, he was weaned from the breast of the local government.
Then our “hero”, sat like a remora on Nicolas Sarkozy’s tail, who is now being tried for bribes from terrorists (they have not yet reached the Russian adventures) went to the regional council, where he has been warming a seat for another ten years. As you can see, some natural limitations or hidden vices did not allow Mariani to make a career quickly - having a provincial's thinking, he was clearly frightened by Marcel, where his little Valreas would fit on one berth. Let alone Paris. But, after all, the aristocrat Sarkozy took pity on his southerner friend, who every day was forced to face the French of Middle Eastern and African descent, and took him to the capital as minister of transport. Most likely, then the Russian special services turned its attention to Mariani; however, he had served only about a year and a half, since the new president François Hollande dispersed this entire corrupt gang in 2012. Since then, Sarkozy has been mired in trials, from time to time getting into jail, and Mariani, apparently, began to milk a Russian cow.
Extremely defiantly, he repeatedly visited the Crimean peninsula after its annexation, evading Ukrainian and international legislation, acting as an observer at the presidential “elections” of 2018 and at the voting for amendments to the Constitution on the territory of the annexed Peninsula.
However, initially, possibly due to the brevity of his resume, Mariani was assigned by Moscow to the so-called “third group”, which is recruited in advance with the help of responsive female staff. Indeed, despite the AIDS epidemic, in particular, in Sverdlovsk region, Russia in this sphere may still surprise some unassuming Frenchman. However, an intimate cluster in the Russian system of influence on France is very common, and its male and female employees act dashingly.
By the way, Mariani was deprived of the post of vice-president of the European People's Party group in PACE due to his visit to the occupied Crimea in 2015. Such voyages are used by Russian propaganda to try to legitimize the annexation of the ARC. “Look, the isolation of Crimea has been broken”, they say, but that’s not true.
The propagandists forget a small but key detail - these are not official parliamentary visits, as in the case of Mariani, such “diplomats” act without authority of the French National Assembly or the European Parliament. Accordingly, this is only the initiative of the group crooks, but not a position of the whole country. Nevertheless, this small group of “politarbeiters” is able to damage France’s reputation - after all, according to the French journalist Jean-Baptiste Naudet, in Crimea, Mariani did not hesitate to offer his colleagues with dubious political earnings acquaintance with “Russian girls”.
Mr. Mariani's voyages undermine not only the efforts of the French diplomacy, but also international efforts to resolve issues related to the occupation of the ARC. It is appropriate to quote the words of Elisabeth Guigou, President of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the French National Assembly, which were said in 2015 and fully characterize the actions of Mariani: “This (visiting Crimea - ed.) interferes with French diplomacy together with other countries to resolve the Ukrainian crisis. This visit will be used for political propaganda purposes”. It is worth noting that the trips to the Crimea of both Mariani and other pro-Kremlin politicians who have a long cooperation experience with the Russian government, does not mean that the French government shares their views, if they can be called so. Mariani's views really did not work out - it seems, apart from criticism of “Islamism”, the politician who easily changes party flags believes only in banknotes in hard currency.
A dead failure in the 2017 re-election in a foreign district forced the adventurer to go off the deep end. Five years earlier the then party fellows sent Thierry there, realizing that in a normal district, working Frenchmen would exorcise him, if nothing else, for his image of a professional political swindler. Emmanuel Macron's coming into the French politics was an unpleasant surprise for Mariani, who was counting on the return to the Elysee Palace of his friend and partner in sheering Russian wool, Nicolas Sarkozy. He would certainly have found a “plum job” for a like-minded person. But the secret dreams of the former mayor of Valreas were not to come true. In 2017, Sarkozy was knocked out of the running in early stages, and Mariani, in his turn, flew like plywood over Crimea, devastatingly losing to Macron's candidate Anna Gente.
Thierry Mariani meets all the criteria of a classic politician, financed by Russia: he is a member of the “Friends of Crimea” pool, shouts about the need for lifting sanctions against the Russian Federation, advocates for strengthening economic ties with the official Moscow, recruits French journalists and intimidates those who reveal the truth about his dubious distinction... At this, having been unemployed for two years, Mariani has not only intensified his work for the Russians, but has also become the main organizer of a European deputies’ illegal visits to the occupied Crimea. After his trips to the annexed Peninsula, the political crook has repeatedly lobbied in European structures for information that the Crimean Tatars are “all right” and no one violates their rights. In general, he has been doing everything to undermine the international community's efforts to settle the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.
It is not surprising that today Thierry Mariani (who managed to get into the European Parliament last summer clutching at Marine le Pen’s skirt) is the president of the Franco-Russian Dialogue Association, which was founded in 2004 with the help of, naturally, Vladimir Putin and French President Jacques Chirac. In addition, Mariani used to be one of the key figures of the Republicans party, headed by a materialist, friend of Putin and Muammar Gaddafi, Nicolas Sarkozy, now on trial. When Mariani was a deputy, he headed the largest right-wing faction of this party. So it’s clear that he fully shared Sarkozy’s policy towards racial and ethnic minorities, which the son of Hungarian émigrés first introduced in the police as the Interior Minister. In the Party, Mariani (later he left it, exchanging his shoes for Old Man Le Pen’s slippers, who is said to have been cut loose in Algeria and learnt political experience from the former Vichyite Pierre Poujad) was called “the minister for Russian affairs”, because he is an ardent lobbyist for French companies in former Soviet countries.
In March 2019, Mariani took part in an event dedicated to the 5th anniversary of Russia's occupation of Crimea. There, this European scoundrel was awarded a jubilee medal for his contribution to the development of Crimean-French relations. Mr. Mariani received the badge of honor from the hands of the speaker of the Russian parliament of Crimea, the fugitive swindler in construction engineering and traitor Vladimir Konstantinov. Besides, the French politician is in contact with the chairman of the Russian State Duma Committee on International Affairs Leonid Slutsky, well-known by a number of scandals on sexual grounds and alcohol. These two rogues met before the occupation of Crimea, namely in PACE. From that moment, their active phase of mutually beneficial “friendship” began. The crook Mariani (as it became clear from the article by Mr. Node), who brings his colleagues to Crimea for sex tourism, was one of the main lobbyists for the legality of Crimea's annexation by the Russian Federation. The swindler Thierry, begging from the invaders, like a parrot with per-second billing, insists that there is no oppression of the rights of national minorities on the territory of the annexed Peninsula.
Now, Thierry Mariani is a member of Marine Le Pen's National Rally party, from which he was elected to the European Parliament (EP) in May 2019. As a defector, Mariani was ranked 3rd on the list. And as a member of the European Parliament, this functionary, who hid in Brussels from the train of Sarkozy's deeds, has different convictions from the official position of the EP. The European Parliament has adopted a resolution on maintaining sanctions against the Russian Federation until it fulfills all the Minsk Agreements’ conditions and withdraws its troops from the territory of Ukraine. Mariani, on the other hand, lobbies the interests of the Kremlin and insists on the need to lift sanctions, excluding the need for restrictions against Russia. By his statements and actions, this trickster Mariani, who seems to work not only for money, but also for pleasure, openly demonstrates that he is the mouthpiece of the Kremlin and one of the main Russian propagandist whistlers in France. In addition, real MEPs who comply with both national and international laws are concerned that Russian propaganda is gaining momentum in EU member states. They are impatient with the fact that pro-Russian deputies of the EP do not fulfill their obligations, but, on the contrary, promote the Kremlin's theses and propaganda.
But, from the point of view of such scroungers as Mariani, money does not smell, and in case of failure, Putin will send a personal helicopter for them. Interestingly, Gerard Depardieu, who had recently converted to Orthodoxy (apparently, having confused it with a group of alcoholics anonymous) also thought so, but later the actor could not catch hold either in Chechnya or in Mordovia, while to leave the big screen for the sake of the work of animator was above him…
However, the old political charlatan Mariani is unlikely to be as lucky as Depardieu, who can easily be found drunk in one of the empty airports in Russia - he can no longer play leading roles. As for the dodger from Valreas, he is a member of the pool of the so-called “Friends of Crimea” international association, the initiator of the creation of which was a former French politician and old friend of Russia Jean-Pierre Thomas. The French press even nicknamed him “Monsieur Russia” (because the French does not cost much - this is evident in the case of Mariani's political mentor, Nicolas Sarkozy).
The occupation of Crimea opened up new opportunities for Monsieur Thomas and, in general, a new stage in his public life. Convicted in 2005 for participating in schemes of demanding pay offs from local businesses in France, Jean-Pierre Thomas, who after such scandals had little chance of normalizing life (including its financial component), chose to work for Russia. The old corrupt official Thomas (whom Oleg Deripaska, who found himself under the pressure of US sanctions, has made a chairman of Rusal board of directors instead of himself) has founded an investment company Thomas Vendome Investment in France (business consulting on deposits), on behalf of which he travels to the occupied Crimea with the aim of legitimization of the annexed Peninsula. It is clear that there is no information on what services and what projects this company implements either on the organization's website or in the public domain on the Internet.
“Friends of Moscow”, such as the adventurer Thierry Mariani, “solver” Jean-Pierre Thomas, the accused Sarkozy, and drunkard actor Depardieu - although they enjoy more freedom for Russian money than ordinary agents, but also fulfill a simple and specific task - legitimation of the annexation of Crimea. It is already clear that these intriguers work at their limits, and, eventually, one will take down another to the social bottom. As for Crimea, no one has recognized the Peninsula as Russia's.