I'd say that the retention of 27% by the French state has nothing to do with "grandeur de la France" - it probably just has something to do with the French not wanting to put the complete rest of Air France out for sale immediately: they probably expect that they'll be able to make more money if they sell the rest, either in one piece or in several steps, somewhere down the line.
I'd not call that stupid, but smart.
And regarding AZ
- the plain and obvious difference between the two is that AF
could very well survive without state holdings... but I seriously doubt AZ
could - and that's aside from the fact that the unions at AZ
would probably try to prevent a privatisation by strike...