Pam Barker | Director of TLB Europe Reloaded Project
This illuminating little piece was published on April 28, 2020 at a blog site new to us, titled Chez Renart (Renart’s Place). Here we think: relocation of French companies, Wuhan, application of the ‘sustainable’ smart city agenda, and biowarfare labs.
Martine Aubry has credentials and pedigree. She’s been the mayor of the industrial north-eastern French city of Lille since 2001. France is teeming with mayors in its thousands of ‘communes’ or small towns and cities, many of which will be sincere local politicians serving their electorate in a very direct, hands-on way. Indeed, the French look to their mayors to understand and fix their (local) problems. Mayors of the large urban centers such as Lille, however, are in a power class of their own, and may come and go between being mayor and, variously, a minister in government, a prime minister, etc. Aubry’s been a high-ranking member of France’s center-left Parti Socialist, which is no more than the left wing of the Establishment, giving the French the illusion of choice. She had a failed run at being presidential candidate for the PS against Francois Hollande in 2011, who would become president for a single term in 2012. More importantly, her father was none other than Jacques Delors (pictured with Martine), former French finance minister in the socialist Miterrand government from ’81 to ’85 (serving also a term as mayor of a city during this time), and head of the European Commission for 10 years thereafter until 1995.
It’s an interesting review of a little recent history – the kind that French MSM doesn’t fanfare, showing among other things the Western establishment’s (France in this case) sell-out of its own citizens in its industrial heartlands (Aubry presides over one of these) for economic advantage in China; and the push to roll-out the ‘smart’, ‘sustainable’ agenda through willing participants such as the Chinese, entirely for the globalist Big Data / Big Surveillance / Green technology program, totally at the expense of the environment.
Readers may be interested in clicking on the following links showing pictorially (with English text) the ‘transformation’ into a sustainable/smart city of one of Wuhan’s 13 districts, Caidian, at least according to the artist’s impression. The first by the French architectural company that took first place in an urban design competition 3 years ago: Caidian Sino-French Eco-city, Wuhan. See also Wuhan wins the United Nations “Sustainable Development Award” from a Chinese government site. And this from Global Opportunity Explorer (which seems affiliated with the UN) titled Wuhan: Industrial City Becomes Ecological Town. This link shows what seem to be actual photos of Caidian, a so-called ‘ecological demonstration city’.
The irony of Wuhan’s massive pollution and this so-called ecological project is not lost on author Renart.
When Martine Aubry was doing ecology in Wuhan (laughs)
Who remembers Martine Aubry as the special representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in China?
Who remembers the partnership she signed with the city of Wuhan, to create a “sustainable”, “smart” and “environmentally friendly” district instead of a nature reserve? Not even the main stakeholder, it seems. That’s a shame. Her urban planning experience in Wuhan would help us think about the next world, or at least the second round of municipal elections. (ER: The first round of municipal elections, where mayors like Aubry get re-elected, was held inadvisedly on March 15, the day before the 2-month lockdown commenced; the obligatory second round was postponed.)
At the end of August 2012, Martine Aubry was appointed by Laurent Fabius as special representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in China. From then on, the mayor of Lille (Aubry) would make a special visit to the now famous city of Wuhan to promote French industry. She intended to make China’s fifth largest city a sustainable city, “embodying a better quality of living together for its inhabitants. 1]” How comical that global containment started precisely there.
De Gaulle and Prime Minister Zhou Enlai (pictured) decided in 1966 to make Wuhan a model of Franco-Chinese cooperation. When Aubry set foot in Wuhan, the city was already the most French of Chinese cities. Ninety tricolour companies are already doing business there. PSA (ER: a French car manufacturer making Peugeots and Citroens) has its largest production site in the world there. Société Générale was the first foreign bank to set up in the country in 1996. Areva, Total, Carrefour, Schneider, Renault, Suez employ thousands of people . Wuhan has nine million inhabitants spread over 250 square kilometres, twice the surface area of Paris. A city that at the time was preparing to erect the first skyscraper over 1,000 m high. An urban monster.
Making contacts. On 25 and 26 April 2013, Aubry took her first steps in China with François Hollande, eight French ministers, personalities such as the architect Jean Nouvel, and sixty industrialists. Among them was the head of BioMérieux, who financed the creation of the “P4” high-security bacteriological laboratory in Lyon – the same man who “trained” the researchers at the P4 laboratory in Wuhan in biosafety, and even Le Monde is beginning to wonder whether he is not at the origin of the Covid-19 epidemic . Isn’t the anecdote juicy?
The French delegation signed several trade agreements, in particular between the Pasteur Institute of Shanghai and BioMérieux, and praised the merits of the industrialists who work with them in the nuclear, aerospace, chemical and sustainable city sectors. Chinese urban planning has a “sustainability” challenge that is difficult to grasp. China emits twice as much CO2 as the United States, its air pollution kills one million people a year, and the country has 790 million urban dwellers who will account for 70% of the Chinese population in 2030: “In China’s Great West, 700 mountain peaks will be razed to build metropolises,” predicts Le Monde journalist. 4] China’s economic development is devouring the countryside and villages, knocking down mountains, displacing rivers and expelling millions of people. The Chinese metropolitans then discovered Martine Aubry, who was about to provoke the “smart” turn they had so much hoped for.
On 25 June, the President of the Republic received the equivalent of the Chinese “CAC 40”. Aubry was in the audience. She heard the President use the following language: “China needs Europe for the development of its companies, for access to the technologies of tomorrow. 5]” They are surely impatient at the idea of visiting Euratechnologies in Lille. A few days later, on 4 and 5 July 2013, Aubry went to Wuhan to inaugurate the Suez industrial water treatment plant and took part in a round table on sustainable urban planning with its most illustrious French representatives: Keolis, Saint-Gobain, Schneider-Electric, Suez-Environnement, Thales, Transdev, Veolia Environnement, as well as public bodies such as ADEME and the French Development Agency.
Dreams of grandeur. On 25 October 2013, Martine Aubry finally received at Euratechnologies the Secretary of the Communist Party of Hubei province, whose capital is Wuhan. The mayor of Lille signed an “action plan” with her Chinese counterpart to make a future district in the suburbs of Wuhan an ecological and responsible district. In the photo, around Martine Aubry and the Chinese communists we recognize the socialists Akim Oural (who will then report to the Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Marc Ayrault on intelligent cities ), Stanislas Dendievel (elected to urban planning), and the late Pierre de Saintignon, the linchpin of Euratechnologies. “The Chinese authorities visited the Euratechnologies district, which was awarded the national EcoQuartier label last September. France and China must face major challenges in terms of sustainable urbanization and environmental protection,” the French Embassy website tells us, which does not tell us which side is teaching the other . Lille and Euratechnologies were at the height of their hopes and dreams of international grandeur.
On December 7, 2013, Martine Aubry confided her Chinese ambitions to the JDD: “We are going to build with French companies the first major city designed from the outset to protect the environment. “She told the Parisien the next day: “With around thirty companies, we have shown the Chinese that we are capable of making a global offer […] to make the first new city that takes into account the environment and social ties. 8] “Put another way: the Caidian district on the outskirts of Wuhan was an unproductive nature reserve left to a few idle pangolins. Thanks to Aubry and some French industrialists, it became an “eco-city” of 200,000 inhabitants. Connected, sustainable, smart. These were the ecological ambitions of the mayor of Lille, a candidate up for re-election.
Mission accomplished. On Friday, June 13, 2014, Minister Fabius and Martine “smart” Aubry hosted a round table discussion of French and Chinese mayors in Lille. The expected theme: “The smart city: the challenge of the digital revolution in the management of cities. “Debrief from the director of Lille’s Agency, the city’s economic promotion agency: “Many Chinese mayors have been very interested in our Third Industrial Revolution. 10]” The chinalille is on the right track. The contract was finally signed on 3 November 2014. It initially provided for the creation of a smart city of 100,000 inhabitants. Martine Aubry presented her project on 25 November in Paris before Laurent Fabius and the Chinese ambassador. She spoke of “social mix” and “mixed functions”, “French know-how” and “environmental ambitions” . Veolia, Keolis, Suez and Alstom were in strong agreement with the mayor of Lille. However, history does not say whether Euratechnologies had confirmed its dreams of grandeur by scraping a few crumbs from the project (1.2 billion euros to be shared).
Facing the Minister and the ambassador, Martine Aubry had above all this sentence so little extralucid: “Chinese and French, we are thinking together, at the moment, about the best way for people to meet in the city.” Six years later, its inhabitants have been confined to their homes, receiving their food parcels by drones, and dying by the thousands from an epidemic that started exactly from their homes.
On the government website, we read: “Bernard Cazeneuve (pictured, centre) went to the Chinese city of Wuhan on February 23 , where he visited China’s first high-security P4 epidemiological laboratory. The result of close Franco-Chinese cooperation, it is based on the same model as the Inserm laboratory in Lyon, considered to be one of the best in the world. “The ministerial press release continues: “The city’s assets will also be exploited to promote with France an innovative urban development model, that of the sustainable city.” Cazeneuve does not fail to thank the pioneer of intelligent urban planning in China, Martine Aubry, in a short speech.
Since the beginning of the coronavirus epidemic, Martine Aubry has never mentioned her links over the years with Wuhan. Despite her repeated Franco-Chinese round tables on urban planning, she has not yet shared with us her expertise on the artificialisation of the Chinese countryside, the destruction of mountains, forests and wildlife habitats, or the exchange of viruses between them and humans. She has not shared with us her experience of the Communist dictatorship, while the silence in China weighs heavily on our understanding of the epidemic. She does not ask questions about the activity of French and Chinese laboratories that handle deadly viruses to make them even more deadly. She has not shared with us her visions of the “next world”. Will it resemble the one she helped to build in both Wuhan and Lille? Should the digital and urban plague spread under the effects of the epidemic or stop there? She doesn’t say a word…
Martine Aubry is undoubtedly bound by a loyalty clause that forbids her to make prejudicial remarks against the Chinese government. But Renart and the voters of the second round of municipal elections would still like to have the opinion of a candidate who specializes in methods of environmental destruction.
 Le JDD, 7 décembre 2013.
 Les Échos, 6 avril 2012.
 « Dans la jungle des labos de Wuhan », Le Monde, 26 avril 2020.
 Le Monde, 26 avril 2013.
 L’Usine nouvelle, 26 juin 2013.
 « Vers un modèle français des villes intelligentes partagées », 2018.
 https://cn.ambafrance.org/Cooperation-franco-chinoise, 16 juin 2014.
 Le Parisien, 8 décembre 2013.
 Le Vent de la Chine, 24 mars 2017.
 La voix du nord, 13 juin 2014.
 Le Moci, 26 novembre 2014.
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