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YELLOW VESTS = RED LIGHTS FOR MACRON

YELLOW VESTS = RED LIGHTS FOR MACRON

French President Emmanuel Macron faces the biggest test of presidency as a protest movement, sparked by discontent with a plan to raise gasoline taxes, has grown and become violent. Gabe is here to walk you through the latest:


The gilets jaunes ("yellow vests") protests began just over two weeks ago in response to a government proposal to further increase a "green tax" on gas and diesel fuels. Gas currently costsmore than $7 per gallon in France, and the tax would add 30 percent to that.

Since then the protests have come to embody widespread disillusionment with an aloof president. The protests have, accordingly, gained in intensity. Over the weekend, three people were killed and 260 wounded. Shops were destroyed, and monuments vandalized.

Even after this weekend's violence: 71 percent of French people surveyed support the movement, according to RTL, and nearly 90 percent say the government has mishandled the entire episode. Both the far-right National Front and far-left Unsubmissive Front support the gilets jaunes and have called on parliament to scuttle the tax hike before it takes effect in January.

These protests could well determine the trajectory of the rest of Macron's presidency. He has to placate the protestors but without capitulating in a way that politically dooms his broader plans to reform France's lethargic economy.

Mr. Macron was elected in part because he was a political outsider – now that he is in the cockpit, does he have the political acumen to manage a crisis like this?

Empathy and listening are key to establishing harmonious relationships, as demonstrated by Callista Azogu, GM of Human Resources & Organization for Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC), an Eni subsidiary in Abuja. "To build trust is very difficult. To destroy it is very easy," says Callista, whose busy days involve everything from personnel issues to union relationships. She sees great potential for her native Nigeria not only because of the country's natural resources, but because of its vibrant and creative people.

Learn more about Callista in this episode of Faces of Eni.

For the world's wealthiest nations, including the United States, the rollout of COVID-19 vaccine has been rocky, to say the least. And as a result, much of the developing world will have to wait even longer for their turn. Part of the challenge, World Bank President David Malpass says, is that "advanced economies have reserved a lot of the vaccine doses." Malpass sat down with Ian Bremmer recently to talk about what his organization is doing to try to keep millions around the world from slipping deeper into poverty during the pandemic. Their conversation was part of the latest episode of GZERO World.

Saturday will mark the beginning of an historic turning point for European politics as 1,001 voting members of Germany's Christian Democratic Union, the party of Chancellor Angela Merkel, hold an online conference to elect a new leader.

Here are the basic facts:

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For the first time in twenty years, extreme poverty around the world is growing. How does the developing world recover from a pandemic that has brought even the richest nations to their knees? David Malpass, the President of the World Bank, is tasked with answering that question. He joins Ian Bremmer on GZERO World to talk about how his organization is trying to keep the developing world from slipping further into poverty in the wake of a once-in-a-century pandemic.

Joe Biden wants to move into the White House, but the coast isn't clear. He may need some bleach.

Watch more PUPPET REGIME here.

The GZERO World Podcast with Ian Bremmer. Listen now.

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