Emmanuel Macron’s desperate bid to succeed Merkel as chief EU leader mocked ‘Get over it!’

Andrew Pierce says France's submarines are 'useless'

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Political commentator Andrew Pierce blasted Emmanuel Macron after the French leader’s hope to capitalise on the European Union power vacuum left by Angela Merkel were dashed thanks to the AUKUS deal. Mr Pierce appeared on the Jeremy Vine show and demanded Mr Macron “get over it” as he noted the cancellation of the Australian submarine deal could be seen a long way away. The UK, US, and Australia announced their new AUKUS defensive pact which will provide Australia with nuclear submarines in response to growing Chinese power in the Indo-Pacific region.

Appearing on the Jeremy Vine on Five show, the panel was shown a video of Mr Johnson telling the French to “get a grip” and to give him a break over the submarine deal.

Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu was on the panel and exclaimed “what was he thinking” saying it was wrong to say such a thing in the French language.

Mr Pierce on the other hand thought it was “hilarious” and said: “Get over it, the French have lost a massive contract because their submarines are useless.

“That’s why they lost the contract, the Australians gave them enough warnings and now America and Britain are [going to build them].

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“That’s great for us and too bad, Mr Macron thought he was going to be the leader of Europe when Ms Merkel steps down, he’s not.”

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian called the contract cancellation a “stab in the back” after the £43billion deal was scrapped in favour of the AUKUS pact.

France were only made aware of the pact a few hours after it was announced and were not expecting the submarine contract to be cancelled.

Australia signed a deal with French company DCNS for 12 Shortfin Barracuda Block 1A conventional diesel submarines however issues quickly arose from the deal.

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DCNS, now known as Naval Group, was subject to several damaging cyberattacks in 2016 which shook the confidence of the Australians.

The £43billion deal soon doubled in price as complications with production and maintenance arose.

Delays to construction meant some of the submarines may not be delivered until 2035 by the earliest with Australia retiring some of its submarine fleet in 2026 at a time of growing Chinese influence.

The submarines were also promised to be built in Australia meaning nearly 3,000 jobs could be created but pushback from DCNS meant there was less Australian manufacturing involvement.

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All these factors combined led Australia to look for other defence deals and ultimately to scrap the contract it has with France.

While France claims they were blindsided by the announcement, political and security experts note Australia was unable to announce the cancellation of the contact publically until the last minute for national security purposes.

Mr Macron has withdrawn ambassadors from Australia and the US and has gone on the offensive against the UK stating the Government was acting like America’s lapdog.

Angela Merkel is due to step down as chancellor next week once the German elections have ended, bringing an end to her chancellorship which begun in 2005.

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