According to a BBC report, the head of the French armed forces, Gen. Pierre de Villiers, has quit.
He resigned following a clash with French President Emmanuel Macron over budget cuts, resulting in a €850m ($975m; £752m) decrease in military spending for 2017.
The General, in a statement, said he could no longer “guarantee the durability of the army model” that he considered it necessary to ensure France’s protection. He also, reportedly, said the president should not mess with him on the matter, using stronger language.
“I won’t let myself be fucked like that,” de Villiers said according to two parliamentary sources. “I may be stupid, but I know when I am being had.”
Recently, a hostile argument had broken out between the two men during Bastille Day parade preparations, as Macron readied to hosted U.S. President Donald Trump.
The French head of state said he would not tolerate dissent from the military.
“If the military chief of staff and the president are opposed on something, the military chief of staff goes,” Macron told Le Journal du Dimanche. Adding that the general had his “full trust” as long as he “knows the chain of command and how it works.”
Over 500 Boys Abused at Top German Catholic School
An independent German report revealed that five-hundred-and-forty-seven pupils at prestigious Roman Catholic choir schools were physically or sexually abused.
The 440-page report documents teachers hitting boys in the face leaving visible marks as well as beating them with wooden sticks and violin bows.
The institution, which dates back 1,000 years, first faced allegations of abuse in 2010. The report stated that the incidents took place between 1945 and 2015. Some of the boys likened the institution to “prison, hell or a concentration camp.”
Students who attempted to escape the Regensburger Domspatzen choir were, according to the report, beaten and humiliated in front of the other boys.
On Tuesday, the diocese acknowledged that it had “made mistakes.”
“We all made mistakes and have learned a lot. We see today that we could have done things better and sooner,” Michael Fuchs, the vicar general of Regensburg, said.
Georg Ratzinger, the brother of the former Pope Benedict XVI, led the choir from 1964 to 1994. In 2010, Ratzinger did admit that he had hit the boys, adding that he was unaware of the severity of the disciplinary methods he employed.
The diocese’s lawyer Ulrich Weber, who was authorized to compile the report, said the institution focused on achieving musical excellence and choral success, which demanded a high degree of discipline – the basis for the violence.
Weber added that he was somewhat “to be blamed especially for turning a blind eye and not intervening despite having knowledge” of some of the atrocities. The report did not show that Weber was aware of any sexual abuse.
Former choir boy and abuse victim, Alexander Probst, told Reuters TV: “These are not 547 cases where an individual was affected once. Rather, this was an ongoing practice over decades where 547 children were tormented, abused, mistreated and socially harmed.”
“They are severely traumatized to this very day. This upsets me. I thought I had gotten over it after a seven-year battle but in fact this greatly upset me today.”
Some of the former pupils had likely been victims of physical and or sexual violence, 67 of the 547 suffered sexual abuse, Weber discovered. His report fingered 49 individuals – 45 were physically violent and nine believed to have committed sexual violence.
“Victims… described the institution as a prison, hell and a concentration camp,” Weber disclosed in a news conference.
“Many of them called the time there as the worst of their lives, which was marked by violence, fear and helplessness.”
Allegations of sexual and physical abuse have long plagued Catholic schools in former Pope Benedict XVI’s hometown, Bavaria.