For an investigative journalist specializing like you in the politico-legal cases, I imagine that at the end of the twentieth century, Charles Pasqua, Interior Minister, Baron of Hauts-de- Seine, executor of the dirty work in the UDR and the RPR, was inevitable …
Absolutely! I was talking with him quite complicated reports, tumultuous. But it was also a very endearing character – and exciting, extraordinary, as there existed no other. I remember one time I had an appointment with him to a dark history of true-false passport in which he was involved. He eventually take a big angry bawl me by saying he was fed up of journalists, it was all idiots … I got up and I said, “Minister, apparently you are not willing to answer my questions, I’ll go away. ” There, big silence among his advisers, paralyzed. And her answer: “But Pontaut, you know that they are false anger Sit down, let’s have a drink!”.
He had the reputation of being quite frank …
When he wanted, yes. In two cases that have followed, in 1993 and 1994, assaults against the kidnappers, mother of Neuilly and a year later, in an Air Algeria, every time the protagonists are dead There was no trial, I asked him to tell me all he knew, and I had access to all the information, all that counted with a verve that belonged only to him. He had a very direct word – his wife too! Like the time when the judge Courroye, who was conducting a search at home, asked Charles Pasqua its portfolio, as was his right. The atmosphere became very cold. His wife then told that the last Courroye who had asked his wallet to her husband, it was the Gestapo. The atmosphere then became downright frigid.
Charles Pasqua has sometimes brushed illegal …
Yes, there is the SAC, the barbouseries some electoral manipulation in the Hauts de-Seine. But I think that personally, it was someone with integrity. So it’s true, he liked the relationship “the Corsican” with its parallel networks. But he never made it to enrich themselves, for example. He knew all the tricks to play with – especially the electoral laws. So he realized that campaign funding was admittedly limited … except for the candidates themselves, which could abound limitless. And he was on a list, in ineligible positions, a candidate who was for him to have lots of money and can spend without counting … I believe that there has been an investigation, nevertheless.
What was the Corsica for him?
It was a Corsican of the continent, a Corsican from Marseilles, it will not be forgotten. In the end, he said: “I’m not so much in Corsica, every time, we just tell me the stories of the island for hours!” He had kept the clan side – and then the relationship with the game world … He loved the complex political games. And if he had a lot of charm, a real will on the people, it was very loved, he was also much feared: he was not only false anger!
Charles Pasqua was especially loved by his “cops” …
For police officers, there have been two large interior ministers Pierre Joxe, for all that he has changed in the functioning of his ministry; and Charles Pasqua, who was very close to them. He was able to mobilize as a person.
How would you define politically?
It was a Gaullist, he has always been Gaullist, resistant, son of resistant … D ‘ Moreover, he shared it with François Mitterrand, with whom he got along very well. They met regularly to tell all the evil they thought of their surroundings. He has always supported Chirac – except once, because he thought that this time he would not succeed. He sided with Balladur, it was better placed to win. He was wrong. With Chirac, they continued to be after. But it was never the same. I asked him, he told me, “with Chirac, it is called.” There was something broken.
Charles Pasqua had made Hauts-de-Seine real stronghold …
Hauts-de-Seine, it gave him tremendous power – you can imagine, the budget of Greece! At the same time, that’s where he lived one of its only two failures, when he lost the town hall of Neuilly in favor of a youngster by the name of … Nicolas Sarkozy. It was green with rage.
He dreamed of the presidency of the Senate
The other failure is the presidency of the Senate, which has always denied it, then he dreamed. But he had not the profile. Not enough consensual. And so out of the ordinary! Imagine a Senate president on official visit to Saudi Arabia with a delegation supposed to sell warships, that leaves to go to tea in the desert with the Saudi Interior Minister, and tell her of … goats stories! “We talked about goats, I sold him Corsican goats!” Had he told me. I never knew if it was true.
A new Pasqua, now it be?
He was the last of the generation born in the postwar period. He had been forged by the resistance and was from civil society before doing politics, it was trading at Ricard.