Words and Bullets

Several months ago,[1] Gerard Lebovici -- the "godfather" of the French cinema and, via Editions Champ Libre, the "protector" of the survivors of the situationist monomial, was assassinated. At the time, many hypotheses were advanced by the press in an attempt to explain his assassination. Lebovici, one knew, did not only have friends in the cinematographical "milieu."[2] The same for the "milieus" of the revolution by word and certain people he associated with.

Today, because the police investigation still has not turned anything up, the questions of who assassinated Lebovici and why remain. Indeed! But a short pamphlet[3] has appeared and claims to provide answers to these questions. Thus we can see what took place!

Straight away, this pamphlet creates an ambiance. Its authors, fully aware of the "explosive" character of the results of their investigation, advance stealthily -- wearing the helmet and boots of anonymity -- on the trail leading to Lebovici's assassin and the reason for his gesture. Suspense in the pure state! One feels that this will hurt. And it does hurt!

The anonymous authors of this pamphlet explain that, in fact, Lebovici was not assassinated by the alleged enemies of the cinematographic, situ or any other "milieu." All of these hypotheses in fact constitute a smoke screen raised by the press to prevent one from seeing clearly. Therefore the truth is quite simple. Lebovici was assassinated -- why, yes! it is unbelievable, but true -- by . . . "the established social order." And if Mr Established-Social-Order decided to strike so hard, this was -- certainly -- because Lebovici, by publishing situ dynamite and libertarian firecrackers through Editions Champ Libre, constituted a . . . moral threat to him! Astonishing, no?

As one can see, the crypto-situ authors of this pamphlet doubt nothing. They are ready for anything and, under the circumstances, [are ready] to rob a cadaver so as to play at scaring themselves and to prove that they still exist. Pitiful!

Pitiful, but logical. All the "has beens"[4] of the blah-blah and other surfers of showing off are cut from the same cloth. Because, at the moment of their revolt,[5] they confounded the appearance and the reality, and from this fact have had the impression that they lived their dreams, they have ended up -- from a small step in a little pile -- dreaming their lives in the past so as to try to survive in the present. And this produces this kind of pamphlet, a sad pantomime of a band of paranoid mutes. Ah la la, Jacques Brel has said, "to die to nothing, but to grow old!"

Herve-Claude Lapidaire

[1] Lebovici was murdered on 5 March 1984, more than a year before this text was published.

[2] That is to say, he had enemies as well as friends in this "milieu."

[3] Words and Bullets: The Condemned of the Lebovici Affair was published in August 1984. Though anonymous, it appears to have been written by Jean-Francois Martos.

[4] English in original.

[5] The May 1968 occupations movement.

(Published in Le Monde Libertaire, 1 May 1985. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! August 2007. Footnotes by the translator.)

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