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LES ECHOS

The French Boomerang: When Adult Kids Move Back Home (With Lover In Tow)

The twin problems of the economic crisis and university studies taking longer than expected have conspired to force many young adults to return home to their parents. Problem is, sometimes they bring their partners too.

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Pascale Krémer

PARIS — Why do young people always meet at cafés? That's the question frequently posed after the Nov. 13 terror attacks in Paris. "Either we live in a 10-meter studio apartment, or we're still with our parents," 22-year-old Jules Boissard answers.

A university student in his third year, Boissard lives with his girlfriend at the home of her parents. He's grateful for their hospitality, but he dreams of one day being able to invite his friends over to share dinner without having a couple of fifty-somethings joining in. "It was fun ... at first,"he says.

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Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

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In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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