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back to article Explosive French workers threaten second factory

Nortel workers have taken a leaf from the book of their New Fabris comrades and threatened to blow up their company's Yvelines factory unless the telecomms outfit treats them with a bit more respect and to a bit more redundancy cash. According to Reuters, 480 employees face the chop following "bankruptcy proceedings". Earlier …

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Grenade

Couldn't happen here

Or in the US, for that matter. You'd have a crack anti-terror squad in there with guns blazing to sort them out for threatening to blow things up.

I think it's called extortion if you ignore the prevalent 'everything is a terrorist act' mentality.

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Grenade

"give us more cash or we'll nuke central Paris".

Oooh please...

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Flame

Solution

Tell them the Germans are on the way back... They'll be out of that factory and running for the nearest purveyor of white handkerchiefs before you can say "oooh la la!"

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Coat

aha

that explains why they torched 500 cars yesterday on their 'quatorze juillet'. They were merely practicing.

Must be all that onion soup they are eating. it gives plenty of gas ...

Mine's the asbestos lined one

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WTF?

"give us more cash or we'll [take of and] nuke central Paris"

It's the only way to be sure.

Given that they're breaking the law if they do that, wouldn't they then be illegal Aliens (fans)?

</pun>

Also, what's the threat? The companies will already have lost the kit- they'll surely be getting rid of that as well as the staff- so rather than getting the resale value of a few million quid's worth of equipment they'll get the new cost through their insurance company... which explains why they've not been declared "terrorists" yet- lots of insurance policies don't cover acts of Terrorism.

Sooo... is this one of the world's most elaborate insurance scams?

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Silver badge

Simple solution.

1: Arrest the lot of 'em (for extortion, trespassing, threatened destruction of private property, placing lives in danger, and that's just off the top of my head).

2: Ban unions; they are an anachronistic leftover from the industrial revolution.

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Coat

Well now

One can certainly sympathize with their plight, though not so much with how they go about handling the "public relations" end of things.

I'll just be putting on my bomb-proof coat here...

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Anonymous Coward

@ By Tim Schomer Posted Wednesday 15th July 2009 15:31 GMT

Come on people - use the right name - Frog Central, please.

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Bronze badge

Typical

It's pretty hard to threaten an administrator. Almost by definition the administrator has no financial interest in the business, they're there just to wind up the firm and collect a fee for their labours from whatever the proceeds turn out to be. If the workers did blow up the factory I dare say the administrators would merely give a Gallic shrug and declare the whole thing to be Someone Else's Problem, and there would be no cash at all to pay anyone, least of all the workers.

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Big Brother

seriously?

#6 are you insane? did you not just see what happened to GM and Chrysler? The socialist Obama administration told these companies creditors to bend over and handed the companies over to the unions and government . Didn't see any protests on those bankruptcies did ya..

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stc
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love it

i love the french. they've got probably the last remaining nation in the west where the people aren't afraid to stand up and fight for what's right against the government and big business. pity we don't have more of that sort of sentiment in this so-called "land of the free". we might actually have some of our freedoms left if we did!

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Big Brother

Also Stupid

Under it's former dictator in chief Bill "Slick Willy" Clinton, the Executive arm showed that it was willing to send men in black with no identification bearing machine guns against a unarmed Cuban family to keep things quiet.

Law enforcement in the US has always shown that it will stoop to assassination to stop dangerous and successful criminals unless of course they are successful enough.

American workers can expect to disappear into the night never to be heard from again is they even think about following the actions of their French counterparts.

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Fine they can have Paris..

Just leave the Ski resorts alone ;)

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Joke

@Couldn't happen here

Simple! Rename the factory Wako, and let the Frog Gummint blow it out of God's Green and Pleasant Land, for free. Or, declare Osama bin Laden's image has been spotted in a croissant in the staff canteen. Then the 'Merkans will nuke the fuc*ker.

(That'll fuc*k Paris as well - nonono! I didn't mean *that* one!)

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Grenade

Deja Vu..?

This is similar to the fuel/refinery blockades a few years back. The French protested at fuel prices by parking artics, trucks et al across refineries, thus putting a stranglehold on the state. The French government folded and fuel prices dropped. Protesters tried it here (some were even invited over from France!) but it didn't quite work. In Spain the blockades lasted 4 hours before El Plod opened up with rubber bullets.

These actions are about as close to extortion as you can get. The French authorities should insist that these mindless twats are locked in the factories before the gas canisters go off!

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Anonymous Coward

@Number6

I think the French are on record as being perfectly happy to whack a few protesters..

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Bronze badge

@Number6

Pre 9/11 the US would of considered that domestic terrorist act. Not a good Idea.

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Joke

urban myth

It is an urban myth both that the eskimos have 47 subtle different words for snow and the French have 50+ for surrender.

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Don't they have references in France?

Just wondering exactly how they'll work with the job reference - not sure blowing up the factory really is the best way to get your ex-bosses to say nice things about you. Mind you with it's benefits system, being out of work is probably more profitable in France.

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Grenade

Yvelines

Been there. Blowing it up could only improve it.

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Thumb Down

With all the incomprehension of Karl Marx...

>>last remaining nation in the west where the people aren't afraid to stand up and fight for what's right against the government and big business

I think you are unsure on how a private company actually works. Hint: It doesn't have a money printing press in the cellar.

These weirdos got their paycheck, right? Do they have any other outstanding concerns with the company except maybe legal requirements for "reintegration"? I would not think so.

These guys demand 100'000 EUR per worker... but are unsure who shall pay. I mean, really now.

http://www.lemonde.fr/la-crise-financiere/article/2009/07/15/nortel-nous-ne-sommes-pas-des-terroristes_1218903_1101386.html#ens_id=1218204

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this is how government functions

Im surprised to see all of you siding against the people. Don't you realize this is how government works? Or at least the US government.

I can cite a couple that refused to pay their taxes, they had the military at their property, shutdown their utilities .... all because they refused to pay their taxes.

Perhaps the government of France doesn't function this way, but this is the way government functions, it's nice to see the people have as swing at freedom.

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Anonymous Coward

@James Woods

We can't side with the French, they're ummm... French... Goes against our nature!

Anyway, more seriously...

The French have a long long record of breaking any law they like to suit themselves. When the farmers get upset they blockade the roads/ports and cut off the UK cross channel ferries, even though the UK has nothing to do with the issue they are complaining about.

When the issue they are complaining about does have something to do with the UK, they set fire to our lorries!

The French Police do nothing. The free movement of people and products is one of the fundamental rules of the EU, yet the EU club seems unable to sort out one of it's founding members.

That is why a lot of Brits really don't want a united states of Europe.

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Rob
Bronze badge
Grenade

Insurance

I doubt the insurance policies cover them against Acts of Terrorism, so the blowing up the factory and kit will be quite expensive, plus the company will be liable for the clean-up costs.

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James may was right ...

A nation of bolshy, work-shy peasants.

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Pirate

The French have an understanding with the mob

The government can pass any laws it wants. Anything the government wants to do is subject to veto by the mob and it's been that way at least as far back as the French revolution. In other places a whiff of grapeshot and the bayonet only need be applied once per generation to keep things orderly and friendly.

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Flame

The French Government Are The Terrorists

Cast your mind back to the 80's when French secret service agents bombed and sank the Greenpeace ship 'Rainbow Warrior' while it was tied up at the Wharf in central Auckland (NZ), killing a crew-member onboard at the time.

Although the culprits were caught, they were later handed over by the NZ Govt to the French Govt who would ostensibly incarcerate them on their native soil. Instead they were released and given commendations (anecdotal I believe). The NZ Govt caved under immense pressure from the French Govt who threatened to blockade NZ agricultural exports into Europe, one of the bigger markets for NZ produce at the time.

As for France? Bulldoze the whole goddamned country and turn it into a bloody parking lot, I say. Bolshy workers, the Government, all of it.

PS: French wine blows goats.

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Anonymous Coward

Vision of an employee in strike

Being a part of Nortel employees in strike, I wish to make some comments with regard to what I was able to read on this blog.

- We all knew that gas bottles were empty: this "exercise" was there only to alert the media... and this has been a real success: all the TV chanels spoke of Nortel during the day, and then we had the visit of the Industry Minister..

- I remind that 465 peoples are laid-off with probably no or ridiculous severance even after more than 10 years spent for this company.... while we are speaking about a brankrupt clearly organized by the management in NA, the same management who got 45 M$ distributed a few weeks ago as "incentive".

About the 100 k€ claimed, nobody really believe we'll get them, but as Oscar wilde used to say "

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land amoung the stars".

I'm proud of this strike: I don't want to be f.... like our UK Nortel colleagues a few weeks ago. French may have many defaults...but we have balls in our pants :)

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Gold badge

Doesn't seem effective

I'm with Trev on this one -- if the plant's being closed already

1) Will they care if it's blown up? It'll probably save the costs of demolition...

2) That's a hell of a mark on the resume... "Oh yeah, he blew up the factory" hahaha

@LINCARD1000: Good! Rainbow Warrior needed some blowing up. I think the environment's important but Greenpeace is one big PITA. Playing chicken with seafaring vessels and such is not cool at all.

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Thumb Up

rofl

Gotta love the French.

I'm going to love watching the news the day they try to sack nuclear power plant technicians or some such =)

(From the safety of New Zealand of course)

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