A southern French winemaker has been injured and is currently under investigation after explosives he was making blew up in his winery…
He is currently being investigated for links to recent attacks by the CRAV, a militant group of winemakers.
Public prosecutor Francis Battut told news agency AFP the police were looking to determine ‘whether the explosive devices are the same as those used in attacks these last few months’.
The winemaker told police the bombs, made with over-the-counter ingredients, were to be used to bring down poplar trees on his land…
Homemade explosives. To fell poplar trees. Hell, why not! You could also use m-80s to cultivate, and a shotgun to broadcast cover crop. Extreme viticulture was never this fun and exciting. Except when you blow yourself up. In your own winery.
So anyway, this all got me wondering what a meeting of CRAV, the militant winemakers group, might look like. Who brings the wine, because you know they aren’t drinking the crap they produce? Do they ritually smash bottles of Gallo before each meeting? Do they bring schematics and explosive materials along for show and tell? Do they make molotov cocktails out of Provincial rose bottles? The mind reels.
According to the Wikipedia entry on CRAV, their demands have included
…elements which are more-or-less impossible for French politicians to implement under European Union rules, since they would mean interfering with the single market and introducing national subsidies on top of the Common Agricultural Policy. The group has called for higher restrictive tariffs against the rising imports of wine from Spain and Italy, where lower social costs, less red tape and another industry structure leads to more economical wine production.
It has claimed responsibility for numerous attacks including dynamiting grocery stores, a winery, the agriculture ministry offices in two cities, burning a car at another, hijacking a tanker, and destroying large quantities of non-French wine…
On 17 May 2007 the group released a video in which it was stated that blood would flow if Nicolas Sarkozy failed to act to raise the price of wine.
There will be blood indeed. FAIL.