By: Dr. Ahmed Youssef
The ‘Benalla gate’ scandal of Alexandre Benalla, who is the bodyguard of French President Emmanuel Macron, has brought to mind a secret ring that used to work for the Élysée Palace through a special unit called Le cabinet noir, or the black office, in some eras of the French history.
Benalla, 26, has all the characteristics of a parallel policeman. Rumor has it among the French elite that Benalla is linked to the mafia in France and Morocco.
Three commissions were formed over the past 48 hours to reveal the truth about Benalla, who worked for Macron. It was proved that Benalla went to join the police without any legal authority to combat a protest on May 1.
Benalla illegally wore a police helmet and identification tag. The most striking about the incident was the brutality he showed in beating the protesters as seen in the footage, which is being investigated after these videos were highlighted by French and western media.
Charles de Gaulle & the Black Office
The Black Office is a stigma in the French democracy as it dates back to General Charles de Gaulle, who organized the French resistance against the Nazis in 1941. He sought to lure the French people from all walks of life. In very tough conditions, he recruited the communists, far-right and even the mafia rings, which spread in Marseille, Corsica and Nice.
After the resistance freed France from the German occupation, de Gaulle wanted to reward all parties. He appointed the communists as cabinet ministers and formed a secret unit “Le Sac”, or Service d’Action Civique (the Civil Service Agency) comprising the mafia ring.
De Gaulle, the founder of the modern French democracy, entrusted Le Sac with special operations before other state authorities asked to disband this agency as some of its officials were involved in illegal matters.
Pompidou disbanded Le Sac
The disbanding of Le Sac was the first decision made by former French president Georges Pompidou, who took the helm in 1970 after de Gaulle. However, a number of its officials became leading politicians and cabinet ministries such as Charles Pasqua, who was interior minister in a number of cabinets under François Mitterrand, Jacques Chirac and Nicolas Sarkozy.
The Black Office back to life
The French people forgot these cells that work for the presidency. However, former president Mitterrand reinstated the Black Office back to the Élysée Palace in 1981 for only one objective which was to hide his affair with his mistress Anne Pingeot, and that he had a daughter named Mazarine from her.
The secret security agency spied on journalists, public figures, politicians and French movie stars. It spread rumors to destroy the professional and political future of journalists who dare to approach Mitterrand’s mistress. One of these leading journalists, who were persecuted by this secret security agency, was Edwy Plenel, who founded the online investigative and opinion journal — Mediapart — to expose the presidents, ministers, businesspeople and all the corrupt.
Remarkably, Macron’s bodyguard Benalla enjoys all of the qualities required for the borderline relationship between the mafia and politics. Jean-Luc Melenchon, the opposition leader in the French National Assembly, called for an investigation into “black office” at the Élysée Palace during Macron’s presidency, meaning this scandal would exacerbate and probe into a black office, which has disappeared for long. This poses a threat to the French democracy, which is based on liberty, equality, and fraternity.