This InstaPundit-linked story suggests the extent to which France may be suffering some blowback from its obstructionist policy on Iraq. In a delicious irony, France’s aversion to genuine multilateralism is about to sabotage its faux multilateralism: Lord Robertson, Nato’s Secretary General, is now expected to bypass the alliance’s North Atlantic Council, at which all 19 ...
This InstaPundit-linked story suggests the extent to which France may be suffering some blowback from its obstructionist policy on Iraq. In a delicious irony, France's aversion to genuine multilateralism is about to sabotage its faux multilateralism:
This InstaPundit-linked story suggests the extent to which France may be suffering some blowback from its obstructionist policy on Iraq. In a delicious irony, France’s aversion to genuine multilateralism is about to sabotage its faux multilateralism:
Lord Robertson, Nato’s Secretary General, is now expected to bypass the alliance’s North Atlantic Council, at which all 19 members are represented, and convene a meeting of its Military Policy Committee, from which France is excluded because of its unique arm’s-length relationship with Nato’s military structures. While diplomats said that there was now no prospect of ending French opposition to military support from Nato for Turkey’s defences, they believe that Germany and Belgium, which have so far backed France, may be wavering. The countries have faced fierce criticism from Nato’s 16 other members and have also come under fire from the seven nations recently invited to join the alliance, who accuse them of a “breach of faith” for refusing to grant Turkey’s request for help. ‘If Germany can be won over,’ said a senior Nato diplomat, ‘it’s unlikely that Belgium will want to be isolated as the only one of 18 full military members holding out against aid to Turkey.’ In the meantime, Bulgaria has vowed to resist French attempts to bully it into withdrawing support for America’s plans to disarm Iraq. Last week the French ambassador to Sofia warned Bulgaria that its pro-American stance could jeopardise its efforts to join the European Union. ‘Bulgaria has to consider carefully where its long-term interests lie,’ Jean Loup Kuhn-Delforge said last week. “When people live in Europe they should express solidarity and think European-style.” Solomon Pasi, Bulgaria’s foreign minister, condemned the French as neo-appeasers. ‘We all remember the hesitancy of the Allies, who weren’t sure whether to attack Hitler. They could have prevented so much,’ he said. ‘We’re in a situation where we have a moral imperative to act and act now.’
I suspect Eastern Europe’s governments have fresh memories of the last time the EU tried to pressure them to oppose the U.S. (to be fair, Washington applied pressure on them as well). UPDATE: Jonah Goldberg has a nice piece in the Los Angeles Times (link via OxBlog) about the French that makes some of these points [But it also uses that meme you don’t like–ed. Yes, but his own magazine’s blog agrees with me.] The best grafs:
Indeed, there’s almost no criticism of the United States that doesn’t apply with greater or equal force to France. The French are certainly willing to trade blood for oil, just so long as it’s not their own. And if it’s true to say that America helped ‘create’ Hussein, it’s doubly accurate to say it of the country that sold him a nuclear reactor. The only difference between the two countries is that America is eager to correct its mistakes while France is entirely at peace with letting Hussein continue murdering and terrorizing his subjects and neighbors. It’s true, the phrase ‘cheese-eating surrender monkeys’ isn’t particularly accurate here. The French aren’t being cowards: They’re more like cheese-eating appeasement monkeys, willing to negotiate with evil for short-term advantage. If that makes them heroes to the antiwar movement, so be it. But it doesn’t make them principled — and it certainly doesn’t make them our friends.
Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and co-host of the Space the Nation podcast. Twitter: @dandrezner
More from Foreign Policy
Saudi-Iranian Détente Is a Wake-Up Call for America
The peace plan is a big deal—and it’s no accident that China brokered it.
The U.S.-Israel Relationship No Longer Makes Sense
If Israel and its supporters want the country to continue receiving U.S. largesse, they will need to come up with a new narrative.
Putin Is Trapped in the Sunk-Cost Fallacy of War
Moscow is grasping for meaning in a meaningless invasion.
How China’s Saudi-Iran Deal Can Serve U.S. Interests
And why there’s less to Beijing’s diplomatic breakthrough than meets the eye.