Monday, October 7, 2002
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THE KEY TO UNDERSTANDING THE
The key to understanding what the French will do in international relations was made clear to me a decade ago by an American woman who grew up there: "France will do whatever it takes to magnify their importance." Most of the time, this means publicly disagreeing with the United States about a vital matter of world politics, before caving in if the Americans call their bluff. [Hey, replace "U.S." with Germany, and you can explain their warfighting capabilities as well--ed. Just kidding!!]
Ah, the French. Teaching international relations, making jokes about ethnicities or nationalities is improper classroom decorum. Except the French. If I ever want to get a cheap laugh, all I have to do is say "France" and roll my eyes. Works every time.
Fair? No, but neither is the European assumption that all Americans are trigger-happy, illiterate rednecks. In the end, everything balances out.posted by Dan on 10.07.02 at 02:25 PM