Wednesday, February 19, 2003
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French foreign policy is even dumber than I thought
The quick and overwhelmingly hostile reaction (UPDATE: the BBC has a nice roundup of editorial reaction in New Europe) to Chirac's idiotic comments about central/eastern European countries convinced me that the French government would apologize or downplay the remarks as quickly as possible, probably with some statement explaining that the depth of his love for peace prompted him to make such intemperate remarks. This would be preceded or followed by soothing words from key cabinet officials.
Boy was I wrong. Today, the French Defense Minister upped the ante, according to the Daily Telegraph. Here are her -- pardon the pun -- galling comments:
My favorite part of the article is this priceless graf:
This German report makes her comments sound more Orwellian, if possible:
I must give the Chirac government credit -- it's not easy to make Donald Rumsfeld look diplomatic and Leonid Brezhnev look polite. The French managed it in one fit of temper.
UPDATE: Little noticed in the wake of Chirac's comments has been the tacit support he's received from the chief Eurocrat. According to this report, "But he [Chirac] won some support from European Commission President Romano Prodi, who said the candidates had to realize the EU was a political union and not just an economic club, but he was sure they would get used to it." Of course, how foolish of those candidate countries to believe that a political union meant states would actually debate policy disputes! To be fair, other EU officials who oppose the U.S. position on Iraq have distanced themselves from Chirac's outburst, as this report makes clear:
posted by Dan on 02.19.03 at 09:54 AM