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February 18, 2003
Chirac Offers New EU Members 'Freedom of Silence'

(2003-02-18) -- Jacques Chirac last night offered "liberté de silence" (freedom of silence) to the 13 nations which are candidates for European Union (EU) membership.

"One of the great things about the European Union is that you'll never have to speak your mind," said the French President. "Just listen to what France says, and agree. That's why we call it a Union. We're all together."

Chirac expressed concern that the candidate-nations may not realize they have this freedom because they have publicly supported the position of the United States with regard to Iraqi disarmament.

"In our orientation class," said M. Chirac, "These nations will learn that we call this organization L'Union européenne, or L'UE...never EU, which of course means Etats-Unis (United States)."

He conceded that it sometimes takes a while for new member nations to learn their proper places, and how to enjoy the freedom of silence, "but one would think some of these Eastern European nations would be good at it."

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Why don't we organize demonstrations in support of Bush and Blair? We could burn Chirac in effigy, and carry signs "No Appeasement for Oil."
or "Hey Hey, Jacques Chirac! How many nukes did you sell Iraq?"

I mean, two can play at this game...

Posted by: David at February 18, 2003 08:34 AM

This one is dead-on. And they accuse the US of bullying tactics?

Posted by: James Joyner at February 18, 2003 08:49 AM

I wouldlike to know who authorised the deletion of 8,000 pages of Iraq’s original declaration to the United Nations last December, prior to its distribution to non-permanent UN Security Council members.

While I can accept the sensitivity of some of the details in the Iraqi declaration, which could contain information on how to make certain weapons of mass destruction, I do not accept that the diplomatic delegations of member states of the United Nations Security Council would be unable to keep confidential information that should remain so.

I prefer the suggestion made at the time (report, December 12) that the Iraqi declaration named French, German, US and UK suppliers to Iraq’s military programme that Governments did not want made public, as it would show direct complicity in building up Saddam’s weapons arsenal.

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 18, 2003 09:15 AM

I reckon Chirac figgers, once a satellite nation, always a satellite nation.

Posted by: DougM at February 18, 2003 10:47 AM

Clearly, the French believe that being obnoxious is what is needed to establish themselves as a World Power. I mean, it seems to have worked in terms of being a Tourism Power.

Posted by: PoliBlogger at February 18, 2003 11:29 AM

M. A Frenchman -

You are unconvincing, and clearly not abreast of the facts.

Shoo, fly. You're too ignorant to play in this sandbox.

Posted by: Brenda at February 18, 2003 11:37 AM

Instead of L'UE, maybe they should name it Le PEU, as in Peppy Lepeu, because something is starting to stink over yonder.

Posted by: MarcV at February 18, 2003 12:10 PM

Strategic thinkers in the US have been planning this stage of expansion for years. Paul Wolfowitz, now deputy secretary for defence, was writing about the need to invade Iraq in the mid-1990s.

The impending war will not be fought over terrorism, anthrax, VX gas, Saddam Hussein, democracy or the treatment of the Iraqi people. It is, like almost all such enterprises, about the control of territory, resources and other nations' economies.

Those who are planning it have recognised that their future dominance can be sustained by means of a simple economic formula: blood is a renewable resource; oil is not.

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 18, 2003 12:25 PM

Uh... froggie? You posted the same flawed response to every thread? Does that mean you've given up on rational argument?


Posted by: Shlif at February 18, 2003 12:55 PM

In the Security Council France will propose a resolution which demands Saddam Hoessein to attack himself. There will be a deadline. If Saddam fails, he will be condemned to live in peace. Saddam responded: "This is really cruel." French President Jacques Chirac conceded that this verdict is very hard indeed. "Mais c'est la vie," (that is live) he said. Secretary General Koffi Annan said: "I am not happy with this French move. There are limits." But French Foreign Secretary Dominique Villepin, who still seems to be a man, said: "C'est dÈcidÈ." (It is decided). For the other members of the SC will exercise their right of freedom of silence, given to them by Jacques Chirac in an overwhelming gesture of generosity.
A New Dutchman

Posted by: A New Dutchman at February 18, 2003 01:21 PM

Not to be outdone by their fellow weasels, Germany broadens their terror support to include supplying North Korea with sodium cyanide, a precursor chemical used in making nerve gas.
"Eat our dust frogs!" was the sole response given by German officials.

Posted by: Okie Dokie at February 18, 2003 02:28 PM

The French have never been the same after they guillotined all the smart people during their Revolution. Perhaps Saddam Hussein's Terror makes them warm and nostalgiac for their own. In any case, it is quite tedious to be constantly lectured regarding scruples and morality by the descendants of Madame DeFarge, the bigots of the Dreyfuss affair, and the (gasp!) unilateral sinkers of Greenpeace vessels.

Posted by: A former european at February 18, 2003 02:45 PM

Note to Chirac: if you want to try and act like a cowboy, you need some more lessons...

Posted by: Chrees at February 18, 2003 03:04 PM

At least since Louis XIV the french have been attempting to control Europe. And they have regular used Islamic forces as allies. France's biggest ally in Louis XIV's wars was Suleyman of the Ottoman Empire. And Napoleon had lots of North African Arab buddies.

France so wants to be important they will sell their souls to the devil to get it.

Posted by: Kevin at February 18, 2003 04:55 PM

Hey Frenchman,

If I give my friend a gun, and he uses it to kill his wife, is that my fault?

This seems to be your logic with respect to Iraq. The US sold Iraq weapons to defend itself. Iraq went nuts and attacked five of its neighbors. The UN demanded that Iraq disarm. Iraq didn't disarm. So, clearly this is the fault of the US?


Posted by: Rip at February 18, 2003 05:17 PM

Or is that "l'ue-de crisp?" Or, as the Brits might say, "skip to the loo my darling"?

Posted by: ponsonby britt at February 18, 2003 08:17 PM

Axis of Quiet Weasels, I figure

Posted by: john at February 18, 2003 08:46 PM

Someone needs to write a parody to this to be sung to the tune of Simon & Garfunkel's "Sounds of Silence."

Posted by: Napoleon BrokeHisBoneApart at February 18, 2003 09:59 PM

No they don't. We told the delusional frog to get bent.

Posted by: Sam at February 19, 2003 12:27 AM

Oh, and the Bolshevik Broadcasting Corporation has changed the article's title from 'Chirac slammed by 'New Europe'' to "'New Europe backs EU on Iraq". I'd like to reiterate that we back the US on Iraq, not the EU, and that it would be nice of the BBC to actually use article titles that correspond with the article itself.

Posted by: Sam at February 19, 2003 12:33 AM

I'm taking Frenchman's silence on whether or not Chiraq's comments were reasonable to mean that he believes they were.
It's looking like France seriously intends to replace the Soviets as the less-than-friendly masters of Eastern Europe.

Posted by: Dishman at February 19, 2003 07:08 AM

I believe that Chirac'comments were inelegant and unfriendly. I don't agree with this Bush-like attitude of my President.

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 19, 2003 08:02 AM

Chirac is the French equivalent of Saddam Hussein. However, as a Gaullist dictator, he uses Weapons of French and World Delusion instead of using Weapons of Mass Destruction:

- French grandeur
- French culture
- The French Revolution
- the Declaration of the Rights of Man
- French State-run "solidarity"
- France's "Other Way"
- the so-called best public services in the world

He keeps his citizens under control by regularly gasing them with demagogery, by pandering to their basest feelings of envy, delusion of grandeur and cultural superiority, and anti-Americanism, by keeping up their neurotic fear of "ultra-liberalism" and globalization, and by feeding them with public services (health, electricity, gas, transport, etc.) which look free or inexpensive, but which in fact cost billions of euros each year in tax money to those few people in France who pay taxes.

Just like Mr. Hussein, Mr. Chirac does not want to give up his Weapons of French and World Delusion : no competition, no lay-offs in public companies, no decrease in taxes, just the status quo. There is no point in upsetting the unions and French public servants, is there?

Perhaps Mr. Bush could bomb the ElysÈe Palace on his way to Irak!

Posted by: A Frenchman with no Illusions at February 19, 2003 10:22 AM

Find: Chirac

Replace with : poodleman

Posted by: Mikey at February 19, 2003 10:33 AM

I am afraid that the name "Poodleman" has already been attributed to your vassal Tony Blair.

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 19, 2003 12:07 PM

Hey Frenchie:

Why did the Czech say - more or less - that they learn never to trust the French in the 1930s?

What nation gave the world the term 'collaborator' and whom were they collaborating with? Hint: check with your eastern neighbor.

Who set up a nice bureaucracy to 'facilitate' the 'transportation' of French Jews to their eastern neighbor?

Who gave the world those marvelous statesmen Petain and Laval? See second question.

Who lost every war since the French Revolution? (Which they won since they were fighting Frenchmen anyway).

Got a few more of these when you explain this batch, Froggie.

Posted by: Good Ole Charlie at February 19, 2003 12:42 PM

Silly frenchman.

Can't tell the difference between a foo foo poodle and a British bulldog.

You are beginning to make a bag of rocks look absolutely gifted, intellectually speaking.

But please, don't let me interrupt your exposing your stupidity to all.

Carry on old chap.

Posted by: Okie Dokie at February 19, 2003 02:18 PM

Does Chirac want to be dictator of EU? Is he taking after his mentor Saddam?

Posted by: Mikey at February 19, 2003 02:20 PM

The French can definitely no longer act as if they are the great champions of peace and morality in the world. It is in France's interest to block an attack on Iraq, and their interest to try to intimidate it's eastern neighbors into doing the same thing. Chirac simply inadvertedly admitted this, and showed himself and France's stance on the issue for what it really is: France being threatened by the world's lack of interest in it's delusions of granduer.

Posted by: C'est Domage at February 19, 2003 02:32 PM

So what you are saying this that Chirac is a hyocrate? Holy brie! Who would believe this coming from the French?
Just between you and I, I don't find it an insult to be called a cowboy. It mean straight shooting, no weasel words and what cowboy would EAT HIS HORSE!

Posted by: Mikey at February 19, 2003 02:53 PM

France: I think the stench of their unwashed bodies has addled their wits.

Posted by: A former european at February 19, 2003 03:07 PM

Do you know why the French don't have a lot of horse shows? Because it is not good manners play with your food.

Posted by: Mikey at February 19, 2003 03:13 PM

Hey, Frenchman, unless your name is Goerges Monbiot, why not just come out and say you read his article and that parroting him word-for-word is as deep as your intelligence can reasonably go without hitting crush depth?

Enjoy your continuing and ever-steepening spiral into world irrelevence and universal contempt. There are indeed millions upon millions who hate the US -- and millions and millions more who love and admire us -- and that, jusdging by the letters delivered to your nation, would include just about all of Europe.

On the other hand, no one -- NO ONE -- loves and admires the French -- not even, and perhaps especially, the French themselves. Your self-loathing and arrogance was at first startling, then distressing, then angering. Now, with the rest of Europe openly mocking you and siding with the United States, it has moved to amusing and is rapidly heading for "hilarious."

Please, please, PLEASE could you ask your resident to make more of his unilateral, ignorant, arrogant, SIMPLISME cowboy statements? Watching someone -- let alone an entire nation -- immolate themselves on the bonfire of their own hypocrisy has been more entertaining than any film you have been able to produce since...well, at least since the Surrender in 1940.

Posted by: Bill Whittle at February 19, 2003 11:23 PM

To Bill Whittle and all:

Georges Monbiot wrote a very interesting article in the Guardian on Tuesday February 18, 2003

I would really enjoy to discuss it with all of you and have your opinion about the ideas contained in it.

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 20, 2003 04:00 AM

Bill Whittle,

Very well put.



Stop slamming your head with that door and step away from the doorway, now.

Posted by: Okie Dokie at February 20, 2003 04:19 AM

I forgot to give you the title (It does worth it):

"Too much of a good thing - Underlying the US drive to war is a thirst to open up new opportunities for surplus capital"

George Monbiot
Tuesday February 18, 2003
The Guardian

Posted by: A Frenchman at February 20, 2003 04:32 AM

Oh,the Guardian? hahahahahahahaha

Posted by: Mikey at February 20, 2003 08:41 AM

To:"A Frenchman", I read the Guardian article you mentioned. The Professor (David Harvey) so esteemed by M. Monbiot is merely dishing out a warmed-over version of Lenin's "theory of imperialism as the highest stage of capitalism".
The Prof says that there is a surplus of capital in America which must be employed (by force if necessary) in unwilling parts of the world.
Surplus of capital! To put it as kindly as possible, Dr. Harvey is a little behind in his reading about the securities markets and banking industry. He may also not have been apprised of certain events in 1989 and subsequently that call into question the validity of the theories of Mr. Lenin.
Charming, though, that there are still devotees of these quaint antiquated ideas willing to dust them off and haul them around for our amusement. Sort of like seeing great-great-grandma's Stanley Steamer automobile in a 4th of July parade.

Posted by: JT at February 20, 2003 11:08 AM

Hey frenchperson.

Go to and read the column from Cornel Nistorescu from Romania. Then come back to us and tell us how proud you are of your insipid country!

In fact everyone should read this article.

Posted by: Mikey at February 20, 2003 11:47 AM

Kudos JT for hitting the nail on the head. However, did you really expect the French, as a quaint, outmoded nation to anything else BUT cling to quaint outmoded political theories such as Marxism/Leninism? Its no different than Mussolini's attempt to create a new Roman Empire for the Italians in WWII. The Italians, at least, have learned from their past mistakes and emerged as part of the new, modern Europe.

The French have done nothing except illustrate how apt the title of "Old Europe" applies to them. You can almost smell the mothballs, comrade.

Posted by: A former european at February 20, 2003 06:58 PM

Going to war without France would be like going to the SuperBowl game without your favorite beret

Posted by: john at February 20, 2003 08:53 PM


You still haven't commented on my dissection of your little funny country.

Your opinion of Laval et al.? The origins of 'collaborator'?

At least the US has not 'transported' its own citizens to Nazi Germany for fun and profit. How about those little facts, Frenchman?

Posted by: Good Ole Charlie at February 20, 2003 09:36 PM

To the Frenchman,

I've always thought you French were examples of elegance, but Mon Dieu, from what gutter did you pick your President out of? He sounded like Le Fishmonger on TV! Who does he think he is, telling the East Europeans to shut up? Napoleon? And the tragic thing is, unlike the USA, he doesn't have the STATURE in this world to do that!

La Gloire is gone, since Waterloo, and it would probably be best for the whole world if all you French collectively disabuse yourselves of the notion that you are still a World Power.

Posted by: Carlos from the Philippines at February 21, 2003 10:43 AM

Quotation :"At least the US has not 'transported' its own citizens to Nazi Germany for fun and profit. How about those little facts, Frenchman?"

Answer : Pine Ridge, Wounded knee, Sand Creek

Posted by: Frenchman at February 21, 2003 12:18 PM

Quotation : "I've always thought you French were examples of elegance, but Mon Dieu, from what gutter did you pick your President out of? He sounded like Le Fishmonger on TV! Who does he think he is, telling the East Europeans to shut up? "

Answer : I must admit that My President is not always as elegant as I would like him to be. I even think that telling the East Europeans to shut up was not appropriate. Anyway, he is still more elegant than GWB but you will probably say that it is not difficult. ;)

Vive le General De Gaulle !
Vive le President Chirac !

Posted by: Frenchman at February 21, 2003 12:24 PM

As a former Czech, but now a U.S. citizen, I can tell you that France will never have any influence in Eastern Europe. Memories of French cowardice and betrayal in 1938 still run deep. Daladier's groveling to Hitler in Munich was not an isolated incident, but reflects the French reflex to kowtow to any bloodthirsty dictator; whether Hitler, Saddam Hussein, or Mugabe.

The "New Europe" is tasting freedom and liberty now thanks to the tireless efforts of the US and UK in WWII and the Cold War, and we have not forgotten our benefactors. Had we relied on the French, we would still be oppressed and the French would be making lucrative construction deals to build gulags for the Soviets.

Posted by: A former european at February 21, 2003 02:55 PM

To France and European COLLABORATORS of Saddam;

Every Iraqi and Kurds has the right to be free (like the Europeans) from the dictatorship and tyranny of Saddam.

SHAMELESS France supports Saddam as a way to protect their oil contracts at the expense of every Iraqi and Kurds. France DEPLORAPLE business with Saddam are all in violation of the UN trade embargo and therefore illegal. DESPICABLE France must be tried as an ACCESSORY to all atrocities and genocide committed by Saddam to its own people-particularly the Kurds.

Bootlickers can show their CROCODILE concern by putting Saddam as the King of France and the President of Europe. ìVive Europe - Long live Der Fuhrer Saddamî.

Posted by: Ylmas (a KURD) at February 22, 2003 06:30 AM

France-- what a [pathetic] little country. I remember my grandfather, recounting his fighting from normandy to germany, said that the French are [jerks], even when we were liberating them. Nary a sign of gratitude. By August '45 GI's liked the Germans better than the frogs.

Posted by: drifter at February 22, 2003 12:19 PM

Frenchperson. You proud of Chiraj kissing the murderer Mugabe? Are we surprised? He is just trying to focus attention away from the pitiful state of our union. YOu can wipre your a** in Frane without asking aunion. An don't try their toilet paper.

PS Paris is the most filthy city I have ever been in in my life and I have visited most cities inthe world on my travels. The hotels are awful and the service is putrid! THey will steal from you what you don't have right on your body. They treat you like you are merde. I just don't smile, tell them I don't speak French and don't carry on conversations with them. I don't criticize their country because I am a guest but I am not open as I would be in a place like Istanbul. WHen you take a taxi don't let them drive you anywhere but straight ot the hotel. and watch the meter. Don't even attempt to speak french, even to be soicable. They will sneer at you and talk behind your back.
THey have public bathroom right on the street, right next to open air restaurants. ALso they claret their wine in cows blood so only drink bottled water.

Posted by: Mikey at February 22, 2003 01:35 PM

C-mon guys. Give france a break. They belong to a very rare specie-the missing link between apes and man.

Posted by: Neil at February 23, 2003 03:31 AM

i beg to disagree: i love France (i am italian) and i think they have taken the right stand on this adventure the United States are starting now.

And i would also like someone explaining me why Saddam's WMD program should represent a more imminent threat that, for instance, North Korea's ACTIVE program or the possibility of an India/Pakistan nuclear war.

C'mon, all this iraq thing is bull. Turkey would probably be capable of handling alone a country half-destroyed by sanctions and bombings. The obsession with Iraq has nothing to do with Saddam, and a lot to do with the economic problems of the States. Blood is renevable, oil is not.

I have lost all confidence in the States. I think they are now pretty dangerous and warmongerish and must be stopped.

Just my two cents. But i (and almost everybody else in Europe, as the demonstrations did show) side with France on this.

Moreover I judge alarming some of the reactions on this thread of the american readers: they look brainwashed to me.

Just my two eurocents.

Posted by: Gino at February 23, 2003 04:34 AM


Funny you should bet in euros. It's a funny money currency now. Remember when it was about to replace the dollar.

We're still waiting.

What about the remark of the mayor of Roma? Was he a tool and lackey of the Americans, too?

You guys should get your stories straight.

Posted by: Good Ole Charlie at February 23, 2003 08:01 PM

Grazie Gino.

I also think that they are brainwashed.

Posted by: Frenchman at February 24, 2003 05:05 AM

Frenchie (and Gino)...I enjoyed watching ChIraq smile and shake hands with Mugabe there in Paris. That tells you all you need to know about the French and this war. They have no moral authority to lecture anyone.

And yeah, you better worry about America, because when we find weapons components in Iraq that were sold to them by the French...well, we may not bomb Paris, but you may wish we did. And I can't wait until France tries to present its IOUs from Saddam to the American provisional governor in Baghdad. I would guess that your whores at least know to get cash up front first!'re wrong. The war is ALL about Saddam. Remember...he tried to assasinate W's father on a trip to Kuwait in '93. Hey...I despise Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter even more. But if Saddam (or any other head of state) tried to assassinate them or any other former President, I wouldn't waste one minute with the UN. I'd march straight up to Capitol Hill and demand a declaration of war, and I wouldn't stop without an unconditional surrender.

Posted by: Robert at February 24, 2003 07:24 AM

Well, i do not know if a new money, from a bunch of states that have a bigger economical clout than the United states, makes it a 'funny' currency elsewhere than in your head.

What seems pretty clear to me is that for the first time since long there is the possibility that a currency different from the dollar is beginning to be used for bank-reserves and international transactions. Kinda problem for a country that relies on foreign capital iniection and is "in the red" as heavily as the UsofA are.

Maybe the fact that iraq is the only country that already switched to euro (two years ago) and that the other OPEC countries are discussing a similar move now has something to do with what the USofA are doing?

Or maybe you think really, amrican friends, that the end of the "globalization" march, oil problems and euro arrival have nothing to do with this iraq thing?

Definitely brainwashed, I agree with the french, a pity, because the only ones that can stop this madness would be americans that have not yet lost all sense of perspective.

The coward pilots will vaporise iraqi childrens from 15000 feet distance pressing a button, and then go back to their bases amd ships, drink a mug of coffee and pray the lord, the brave pilots would turn their plane's weapons on their own carriers and destroy them. I doubt there are brave pilots left in the states, though, but if something like that happens I'll drink a glass "champagne" to their courage :-)

Le carre (english spy-storyteller) has recently written:

"How Bush and his junta succeeded in deflecting America's anger from† bin
Laden to Saddam Hussein is one of the great public relations† conjuring
tricks of history. But they swung it. A recent poll tells† us that one
in two Americans now believe Saddam was responsible for† the attack on
the World Trade Centre. But the American public is not† merely being
misled. It is being browbeaten and kept in a state of† ignorance and
fear. " (;=article&sid;=291)

I like the word 'junta'. It reflects very well the reality, methinks.

Posted by: Pan_peter at February 24, 2003 07:25 AM

To Gino Italiano:

North Korea is the prime example why Iraq should be handled now. North Korea has nuclear weapons, something Iraq would have in a couple of years if all you demonstrators were to be followed. You cannot invade and disarm a country with nuclear weapons!! That is why GWB is so aggressive towards Iraq and cautious towards North Korea. North Korea is like a cancer that has metastasized (i.e., spread to other distant body parts), and in such a stage the body is as good as dead, and there is no cure!! In this case Iraq is like a tumor that is about spread; That is why he has to be excised from the world body politic, before he gets too dangerous to be handled. Capisce?

Also all this crap about oil being the reason for this push to war. C'mon now, that's just a bonus in this game. It would be very much cheaper for the USA to ignore UN sanctions and buy Saddam's oil instead of sending 200,000 troops to invade Iraq to procure the same thing. I mean, honestly now, everyone knows Saddam will sell his oil to anyone willing to buy it.

But then again, you're right, in a way. TOTAL, that oil company of the country you love so much, just coincidentally happens to have the largest foreign oil contract in Iraq right now... That just tells you a lot about Chirac's real motivations, (aside of course from posturing and pretending to be the leader of a bonafide world power). He's just petrified that Exxon or Mobil will get it instead!

I cannot get over the disappointment of you first-world individuals parroting standard liberal lines you do not fully comprehend from the comfort of your easy lives. Try living under the misrule of a dictatorship for a while before you spout self-righteous drivel to us. Maybe then your opinions would carry more weight in Eastern Europe or in Iraq itself, if the Iraqi people were actually free enough to voice a genuine opinion.

Hey, come to think of it, its really quite tiring to argue with poorly informed individuals when I know the United States is going to attack Iraq anyway, depose Saddam, and there isn't a fart in hell that you or Chirac's veto in the UN can do anything about it.

Posted by: Carlos from the Philippines at February 24, 2003 09:23 AM

For Pan_peter:

By the way, I had a 100-euro note I tried to have changed here last week. Though the official exchange rate lists it above the US dollar, it was (to my disappointment and surprise) actually worth less (about 5%) in the black market here. Maybe those currency traders know something you and I don't, eh? Don't be so proud of your funny money because, as I have discovered, many prople still trust the US Dollar more.

PS. You guys in Europe will probably never have anything more unified than your money, and you'll always be a bunch of squabbling countries.

Posted by: Carlos from the Philippines at February 24, 2003 09:37 AM

Dear Carlos,
you must be incredibly stupid to get for 100 euro less than 100 dollars of your local crap. Go to a real bank, instead than to the black markt next time, moron.

For now in Europa we have our money and our strong anti-american feelings, and both of these unifying factors are growing, as you can see.

You want to bomb iraq? Go ahead, cowboy, why the hell are you seeking a UN-backing? Show the world how brave you are strafing and flogging dead horses.

Methinks you never been in eastern europe, if you think the people here back the US. The puppets in the government, maybe.

Canadians, West europeans, East europeans, almost everybody but some brainwashed zombies in Arkansas, think that the most dangerous country at the moment are the States.

(these data are on the web, if you are too stupid to find them I'll gladly point them out for you :)

Posted by: Pan_Peter at February 24, 2003 12:11 PM

Dear Pan Peter:

You need to brush up on your grammar and syntax. As to Eastern Europe, you don't have a clue. Only the die-hard communists, Soviet retreads, and Stalin-worshippers still toe that old Kremlin line about American Imperialism. It wasn't the US which kept Eastern Europe under a totalitarian bootheel for fifty years. It wasn't the French who freed them either.
Remember Dubcek in 68? "Socialism with a human face" was crushed by the Stalinist Brezhnev and the rest of Europe did nothing.
Poland's history is little better; being repeatedly carved up between her European "friends".
I don't expect you to understand this because it requires thought beyond mere slogans and cliches. Keep working for the glory of the socialist revolution and the creation of the workers' paradise, comrade.

Posted by: A former european at February 24, 2003 02:55 PM

Also, Pan Peter...there is one thing that can be done to avoid war. Saddam can surrender. Surely he learned how to do that from the French. When the American tanks start rolling across the borders...why does a single shot have to be fired? Just surrender.

This guy isn't just a [jerk]. He is the enemy. Pan Peter...if you have so much courage in your for human shield duty immediately. Go ahead...we all dare you.

Posted by: Robert at February 24, 2003 04:17 PM

to Pan_peter:

just a question, Where do u live?

Posted by: LoÔc at February 25, 2003 05:34 AM

Are we to expect that because the United States reluctantly intervened in a European war six decades ago
France must now blindly obey for the next FOUR ZILLIONS years whatever a warmongering American elite decides is just?

It was France that helped America achieve independence from a tyrannical Britain more than 200 years ago.
Should not we therefore be obligated to pledge its blind allegiance to French foreign policy forever after?

Mary USA

Posted by: Mary at February 25, 2003 10:08 AM

For Tovarisch Pan_peter:

For your information, Argumentum ad hominem only serves to expose how infirm your position in any discussion really is.

Foreign currency is always traded at a higher value in ANY black market, whether here or there. That's why its called a black market; they wouldn't exist if they bought currency at cheaper rates than the banks. I expected you to know that, with your area of the world under Soviet mismanagement for so long. In this part of the world, its the morons who go to the bank to have their euros or dollars changed.

After that basic economics lesson, I am tempted to further educate you about some of the issues pending, but I now realize that some individuals will never more rise above the level of mere sloganeering.

So far I don't see too much unity in your Europa, you are all still a bunch of squabbling tribes.

And fear not, the USA will indeed attack Iraq. The UN's imprimatur is only icing on the cake, and there isn't anything you or the French can do about it. Maybe you can weep for Saddam when its all over.

Posted by: Carlos from the Philippines at February 25, 2003 11:59 AM

Hey guys you all came from Europe you'r just [a] speak our laguages, follow our traditions...THE EUROPEAN CULUTURE (the kings stayed in Europe, the poors went to the new world)...the whole world is a slave, trying to reach Europe's "grandeur" Leave us alone and play with Irak...
just a question: what about bin laden? you got him?

Posted by: NapolÈon at February 26, 2003 07:03 PM

What europe's "grandeur" are you talking about??? You mean to say the weasel and bootlicking thing???

Posted by: Neil at February 27, 2003 01:01 AM

Mary of USA avers in her last posting that ìUnited States reluctantly intervened in a European war six decades ago.î The accent here is on ìreluctantlyî.
Oh yes, the Yanks reluctantly intervened, reluctantly sent millions tons of arms, food, medicine to besieged England, reluctantly stormed the beaches of Sicily and Normandy, reluctantly bled to death on Omaha beach, reluctantly have their arms, legs, faces blown off and reluctantly buried their hundreds thousand buddies in the European soil.
Hey, but that is not the end - just think of the scandalous reluctance of Yankee mothers seeing their boys sail across Atlantic perhaps never to see them again, so they may, however reluctantly, liberate the French, who, not so reluctantly, collaborated with their Nazi masters hunting down and sending Jews to the extermination camps.

Dear Mary, the US does not demand that France "blindly obey for the next FOUR ZILLIONS years", as you put it. It doesn't expect France to automatically agree on such trivial matters as international trade, customs tariffs, price of camembert, or wine bottling. These things are resolved, however imperfectly, without the US ever resorting to reminding the French of their debt. But the US is right to expect that France at least shall not sabotage the American initiative to offer the Iraqis what it once offered to the French. What France owes America is her freedom from Nazi monstrosity. Indeed, France owes America her very life.
The dumb, simplistic, Yanks paid, however reluctantly, with hundreds of thousands of their lives and limbs, so France might live and prosper. Today US is ready, perhaps reluctantly, to liberate the people of Iraq from the rule of a sadistic, murderous regime as horrible as the one that ravished France and the rest of Europe some 60 years ago. And it asks France to remember her own suffering and to support the US on its noble endeavor. And the arrogant, selfish, cynical, shameless France says ìNONî!

What is most disgraceful about France is not that it doesnít ìobeyî the US, but that it betrays the people of Iraq who yearn for life of dignity and freedom as much, if not more, than the French did 60 years ago. Disgusting!

Posted by: Tadek at February 27, 2003 11:23 AM

Stop talkin' of World war II ...without France america would be a british colony...we helped you first!!'r american thanx to french blood...don't try to make your own history...Don't you ever think of Lafayette leaving his family for you?...we gave you independance...and it cost a lot to France...but we did that just for freedom (statue of liberty...don't you rember this french present!!!!!???) never had people dying in your streets and enemy raping your wife in your own house...DON'T MAKE WAR JUST FOR FUN...YOU'R ALL BRAINWASHED by T.V and Bush's newspapers...peace is better for everyone don't let your sons die for nothing!!!
PEACE is the only way...(for the moment...sadam is dying...catch bin laden first he's more dangerous...)

Posted by: NapolÈon at February 27, 2003 06:28 PM

Napoleon I agree with you

We don't need a war

Posted by: AmericanFrenchLover at February 27, 2003 07:38 PM

David, you blame France for selling WMD to Saddam ? Now let¥s take a look at his suppliers list ...


A = nuclear weapon program
B = biological weapon program
C = chemical weapon program
R = rocket program
K = conventional weapons, military logistics, supplies at the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, and building of military plants


1. Honeywell (R, K)
2. Spectra Physics (K)
3. Semetex (R)
4. TI Coating (A, K)
5. Unisys (A, K)
6. Sperry Corp. (R, K)
7. Tektronix (R, A)
8. Rockwell (K)
9. Leybold Vacuum Systems (A)
10. Finnigan-MAT-US (A)
11. Hewlett-Packard (A, R, K)
12. Dupont (A)
13. Eastman Kodak (R)
14. American Type Culture Collection (B)
15. Alcolac International (C)
16. Consarc (A)
17. Carl Zeiss - U.S (K)
18. Cerberus (LTD) (A)
19. Electronic Associates (R)
20. International Computer Systems (A, R, K)
21. Bechtel (K)
22. EZ Logic Data Systems, Inc. (R)
23. Canberra Industries Inc. (A)
24. Axel Electronics Inc. (A)

"In addition to these 24 companies home-based in the USA are 50 subsidiaries of foreign enterprises which conducted their arms business with Iraq from within the US. Also designated as suppliers for Iraq's arms programs (A, B, C & R) are the US Ministries of Defense, Energy, Trade and Agriculture as well as the Lawrence Livermore, Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories."


1. China Wanbao Engineering Company (A, C, K)
2. Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd (K)
3. China State Missile Company (R)


1. Commissariat a l'Energie Atomique (A)
2. Sciaky (A)
3. Thomson CSF (A, K)
4. Aerospatiale and Matra Espace (R)
5. Cerbag (A)
6. Protec SA (C)
7. Thales Group (A)
8. SocietÈ GÈnÈral pour les Techniques Nouvelles (A)

Great Britain

1. Euromac Ltd-Uk (A)
2. C. Plath-Nuclear (A)
3. Endshire Export Marketing (A)
4. International Computer Systems (A, R, K)
5. MEED International (A, C)
6. Walter Somers Ltd. (R)
7. International Computer Limited (A, K)
8. Matrix Churchill Corp. (A)
9. Ali Ashour Daghir (A)
10. International Military Services (R) (part of the UK Ministry of Defence)
11. Sheffield Forgemasters (R)
12. Technology Development Group (R)
13. International Signal and Control (R)
14. Terex Corporation (R)
15. Inwako (A)
16. TMG Engineering (K)
17. XYY Options, Inc (A)


1. Soviet State Missile Co. (R)
2. Niikhism (R)
3. Mars Rotor (R)
4. Livinvest (R)
5. Russia Aviatin Trading House (K)
6. Amsar Trading (K)


1. Fanuc (A)
2. Hammamatsu Photonics KK (A)
3. NEC (A)
4. Osaka (A)
5. Waida (A)

The Netherlands

1.Melchemie B.V. (C)
2. KBS Holland B.V. (C)
3. Delft Instruments N.V. (K)


1. Boehler Edelstahl (A)
2. NU Kraft Mercantile Corporation (C)
3. OIP Instrubel (K)
4. Phillips Petroleum (C)
5. Poudries RÈunies Belge SA (R)
6. Sebatra (A)
7. Space Research Corp. (R)


1. Donabat (R)
2. Treblam (C)
3. Zayer (A)


1. ABB (A)
2. Saab-Scania (R)

Posted by: Alex Fox at February 27, 2003 08:08 PM

Monsieur (Madame?) Napoleon,
Actually, it is not only in the WW2, but also in WW1 the Yanks liberated your French cheese from the Boshes.
General Lafayette and his thousand, or so, associates were rather charming and entertaining bunch quite popular with the ladies. They were sometimes even moderately helpful, but they did not liberate America from the Brits. And how could they? The Brits kicked your butt for the past 500 years on your own soil and to believe that you defeated the British Empire in America just as the Yanks defeated Germany in Europe is a folly fitting a man (woman?) who signs his (her?) ìPEACE-IS-THE-WAYî appeal with ìNapoleonî! What a choice of name to voice such passionate cries for peace!

With all respect to Lafayette - his contribution had little to do with liberation of Americans from the colonial yoke, and everything with a realpolitik of the time. If the French were so dedicated to liberation of colonies why didnít they begin by liberating French colonies from France?

Come on, Monsieur (Madame?) Napoleon, please stay away from strong cheese. It has a devastating effect on your not-so-Napoleonic brain-powerÖ

Posted by: Tadek at February 28, 2003 02:00 AM

" This clandestine assistance became open after the defeat of General Burgoyne at Saratoga in 1777, which demonstrated the possibility of British defeat in the conflict and led to French recognition of the colonies in February 1778. As a result of the victory of the Continental forces at Saratoga, Benjamin Franklin, who had gone to Paris as ambassador in 1776, was able to negotiate a Treaty of Amity and Commerce and a Treaty of Alliance with France. From this point, French support became increasingly significant. The French extended considerable financial support to the Congressional forces. France also supplied vital military arms and supplies, and loaned money to pay for their purchase.

From the outbreak of armed rebellion in 1775, many in France sympathized with the colonists. Young, idealistic French officers like the Marquis de Lafayette volunteered their services and in many cases their personal wealth to help equip, train and lead the fledgling Continental army. The French government hoped to redress the balance of power that resulted from the French humFrench military aid was also a decisive factor in the American victory. French land and sea forces fought on the side of the American colonists against the British. At the same time, British and French (and to a lesser extent, Dutch and Spanish) forces fought for colonial wealth and empire around the world. From 1778 through 1783 -- two years after the defeat of Cornwallis at Yorktown -- French forces fought the British in the West Indies, Africa and India.

From the perspective of the American Revolution, however, the high point of French support is the landing of five battalions of French infantry and artillery in Rhode Island in 1780. In 1781, these French troops under the command of Count Rochambeau marched south to Virginia where they joined Continental forces under Washington and Lafayette. Cornwallis, encamped on the Yorktown peninsula, hoped to be rescued by the British navy. A French fleet under the command of Admiral DeGrasse intercepted and, after a fierce battle lasting several days, defeated the British fleet and forced it to withdraw. This left the French navy to land heavy siege cannon and other supplies and trapped Cornwallis on the Yorktown peninsula.

At that point, the defeat of Cornwallis was essentially a matter of time. On September 14, 1781, the French and Continental armies completed their 700 mile march and soon thereafter laid siege to the British positions. After a number of weeks and several brief but intense engagements, Cornwallis, besieged on the peninsula by the large and well-equipped French-American army, and stricken by dysentery, determined to surrender his army. On October 19, 1781, the British forces marched out between the silent ranks of the Americans and French, arrayed in parallel lines a mile long, and cast down their arms. [...]

George Woodbridge summed up the Yorktown campaign in the following words: "The strategy of the campaign was Rochambeauís; the French fleet was there as a result of his arrangements; the tactics of the battle were his; the American army was present because he had lent money to Washington; in total naval and military participants the French outnumbered the Americans between three and four to one. Yorktown was Rochambeauís victory."



And sorry to tell you, but the US got engaged both in WW I and II after others had already done the major fighting and stopped the Germans. That¥s why the Battle of the Bulge is still considered something big in the US, while in fact it was just a minor irritation.

Posted by: Alex Fox at February 28, 2003 04:17 AM

Others? Do you mean the French? ìOthers ì never stopped the Germans. After Russiaís signing peace with Germany in the WW1 France was collapsing on all fronts and German victory was imminent. Thatís why the US sent its army to Europe. But before the US committed its troops it was sending enormous quantities of material help without which its principal ally England and Russia (in the WW2) would have succumbed to Hitler within months. I have great respect for both the English and the Russians, but their fate and the fate of Europe would have been sealed without the American intervention while on the other hand the US did not need support of Russia, or England, or even France to prevail if Hitler ever wanted to invade the US.
However you choose to view the Battle of the Bulge it has little to do with the overall picture which still says that without the Yanks we, the Europeans, especially in my native part of the Continent, would have been overrun and enslaved by the Nazi Germany. And for that most of us are still quite grateful to the Yanks. Of course there were some courageous and noble Frenchmen and women who fought the Nazis (not nearly as many as in my native country) and I have a great respect for them, but they were not our liberators.
Also, I do admit that I have not been very fair to General Lafayette, but it was a reaction to the ranting nonsense sent and signed by Monsieur Napoleon.

Posted by: Tadek at February 28, 2003 05:32 AM

"France was collapsing and German victory was imminent ?" - afaik soldiers on both sides revolted and just stopped fighting. They were shelled by their own artillery to engage the enemy. On the german side, the soldiers formed communist cells and boycotted the war.

In WW II, Hitler was toast because he didn¥t manage to capture the south russian oil fields or the Middle Eastern ones. Synthetical fuel delivered only about 10 % of the fuel needed for tanks and planes. Of course >US material supportUS forces

Posted by: Alex Fox at February 28, 2003 07:47 AM

Alex "Ösoldiers on both sides revolted and just stopped fighting". Do you mean they resumed the fighting because America joined the war? In other words had not the Yanks landed in Europe everybody would have gone home and the war would have been over?
There were, indeed, a few episodes with German soldiers forming communist cells, but this had a negligible effect on the over all course of the war. The Bosh had the French cooked and it was only a matter of time they would have taken Paris.
And in 1941 had not the Americans engaged Japan fighting what seemed at the time a losing war Russia would have been defeated in a matter of months by the joint Japanese German forces attacking from both West and East. I know quite a great deal about the desperate situation of Russia from my own father who was a combat soldier in the Soviet army during these terrible years.
But beside the enormous material help which you, albeit reluctantly, acknowledge the Yanks were active in the western front already in Nov. 1942 when the Anglo-American forces invaded North Africa. Almost 1.5 year before the invasion of Normandy.
Well, I think we could continue this rather boring exchange forever. I donít have the ambition to influence your views about the American contribution to our freedom. Not so much because we consult different historical sources, but because, what seems to me, is your anti-American animus. Perhaps you have your ideological reasons. Enjoy them! But I have my reasons to back and trust the Yanks more then the French and Germans. You see, it was the American Reaganís policy that caused the implosion of the Evil Empire and liberated countless millions like myself from the nightmare of Communism. We have our freedom now and I think the Iraqis have been waiting for their long enough.
So now when the US is poised to smash the sadistic regime of Saddam and liberate the Iraqis from his torture dungeons I can only say to both the Yanks and the Iraqi people ìgood luck, God bless youî. And I may perhaps add ìand donít forget the French when the war is overî.

Posted by: Tadek at February 28, 2003 11:56 AM

The battle of the Bulge
This battle may be considered the only relevant episode of the war on the Western front. Here the Allies by far outnumbered the Germans in men, guns, armor and planes. They could rely on practically unlimited supplies as well. Against them, as General Halder wrote, the German put up a handful of debilitated divisions, which did not even have sufficient fuel supplies for their negligible number of armored vehicles, had limited amount of ammunition and received practically no air support whatever. Nevertheless they were able to manage an orderly retreat as the Allies limited their activities to local operations of small importance and endless regrouping of their troops. Early in December 1944 the front had moved at a very leisurely pace up to the German border.
Meanwhile during the offensive of 1944 the Russians had broken the best armies the Germans could place in the field and forced them back hundreds of kilometers westward, bringing the front line on the Vistula. Notwithstanding their huge losses the German High Command could still count on the Eastern Front on more than 3,000,000 men, almost 30,000 guns, 4000 tanks and 2000 planes. With the reduction of both the supply lines and the length of the front they felt they had the situation stabilized for the time being.
That gave them hope for a daring stroke in the west. Mastering the last of their shock troops on Dec. 16 the Germans mounted a counteroffensive in the Ardennes. The American troops, taken by surprise, became completely confused. As Mr. Ingersoll wrote, ìthe German troops had torn a fifty mile gap in our line and were pouring thru it like water thru a blown dam. And on every road ahead of them to the west there were Americans fleeing for their lives.î By the end of the year the breach was 80 km wide and 100 km deep. On Jan. 1 the Germans attacked in the Vosges and 4 days later they crossed the Rhine north of Strasbourg. On Jan. 6, Mr. Churchill sent Stalin a telegram, which said:î The battle in the West is very heavyÖ General Eisenhower would like to know what your plans areÖ I shall be grateful if you can tell me whether we can count on a major Russian offensive on the Vistula front, or elsewhere, during January Ö I regard the matter as urgent.î
The Russians received such plea with understanding and they decided to anticipate their spring operations. On Jan. 12 the Soviet army went to the offensive that would bring them to Berlin. In less than 24 hours the German front on the Vistula was broken. Four days later the Soviet tank armies had advanced up to 100 km.
The situation became so desperate that the German High Command had to throw into the breach everything they could lay their hand onto. With it went the bulk of the shock troops already well on the offensive in the west, including the SS tank army that had the Allies running like rabbits before a hound. That spelled the end of the battle and, save for a few skirmishes and the increased bombings of defenseless cities, the war was over in the west.
Dear American friends, some of you may not like it, but most of the history you know about was and is scripted in Hollywood and around. So please spare your puns and bragging based on fiction rather than facts. For the greatness of America is not based on war but letís say, the better side of mankind ñ science, arts, industry, business - what do you want more?

Posted by: en9 at February 28, 2003 08:19 PM

ìThe battle of the Bulge. This battle may be considered the only relevant episode of the war on the Western frontî.

All you Churchills, Bradleys, Eisenhowers, Marshals, Montgomerys, Pattons, the defenders of the British Isles, the British and American Navies, the Airman of RAF and USAF, raiders of beaches of Normandy, Sicily, Africa wherever you are, HEAR THAT and face your irrelevance!
And the rest of you who cling to other notions than the truth revealed by n9 burn your tomes of false knowledge! They were written by naÔve simpletons during the commercial breaks in Hollywood movies.

n9, seriously now, it is a bit testing to try to read your post through after being exposed to such an opening lineÖ

Posted by: Tadek at March 1, 2003 05:08 AM

Osama bin Laden + Germany + Saddam + France

The extend in which France and Germany are trying to use all possible tricks to stop the plans of USA to liberate Irag from Saddam is the same trick which Saddam uses with regards to its WMD. France objective is to guarantee their financial interest (Total-elf-fin), and most importantly;-- to prevent America from capturing Saddam and its apparatus. Franco-German are afraid that once the US military starts interrogating a captured Saddam and his henchmen, America will stumble into a hard evidence linking Osama Bin Laden, France, Germany, and Saddam on a plot against USA.

At present, the evidences linking Saddam to Osama Bin Laden are as follow:

1.) The meeting between the 9/11 ringleader Mohammad Atta and an Iraqi officer in Prague.
2.) The meeting between Osama Bin Laden and Faruk(Iraqi head of intelligence) in their Turkey embassy.
3.) The assistance Saddam extended to Al-Qaida terrorists escaping US troops from Afghanistan.
4.) Iraqi Embassy diplomat direct link with an Asian terrorist group called Abu-Sayaff (with proven Al-Qaida link).

The 9/11 terror attack against America has opened a lot of circumstances, that needs to be clarified and answered once Saddam will be under US custody.

These are:

1.) Most of the direct perpetrator of 9/11 terror attacks against America stayed and lived in Germany.
---- Why and Who financed and coordinated these terrorist??

2.) Moussaoui, the 20th hijacker is a French citizen.
---- Is he working as a coordinator for France intelligence apparatus??

3.) Most Arab terrorist who are positively identified by the CIA are presently in-captivity at Germany and France. But they vehemently refuses to handover these people to the FBI for further questioning.
---- Are they afraid that these terrorist knows too much and might spill the extent of Franco-German collaboration??

4.) The precision in which these terrorist slammed the hijacked aircrafts to the Pentagon and WTC shows thorough training. Records shows that these Arabs have trained in some flying schools in America. But the same record also shows that their performance during and after the training were below par. After the completion of their US training, these terrorists disappeared for a while.
---- Where they sent to Europe for further precision training by Lufthansa Airlines of Germany and Air France??

5.)Airline companies in the USA uses both the American Boeing Aircraft and the Franco-german Airbus in their fleet. Also, AirFrance and Lufthansa aircrafts were in the US airports during 9/11.
---- Why is it that all aircrafts used in the 9/11 attack were US built Boeing and owned by US registered airlines??
---- Is this design to divert US investigators away from the european collaborators??
---- And at the same time, to deliberately weaken American owned airlines- which the European canít compete without state subsidies??

6.)The targets of 9/11 were the World Trade Center Buildings ( Symbols of American Economic Power ) and the Pentagon ( Symbols of American Military Power ). During those times, the value of the European euro was at 0.8 US dollar ( 1 euro = 0.8 US$) from its introductory value of 1.10 US dollar ( 1 euro = 1.10 US $ ) a year before.
---- Was the WTC attack designed to weaken US economy in order to stop the decline of euro and its influence??
---- On the other hand, was the Pentagon attack a Franco-german concession to Osama Bin Ladenís cooperation with them??

These may be circumstantial. It can be proven or disputed once the US military captures Saddam and its cohorts. But for a very obvious reason, France and Germany are pulling all tricks and machinations to harass and stop USA from going into Iraq. President George HW Bush should make the proper decision of liberating the Iraqi people from a Franco-German supported Saddam with or without the irrelevant UN. The truth must be pursued...

Posted by: GLINGNAMEN ACOL at March 1, 2003 06:05 AM

Mr. Tadek I'm afraid you got me wrong:

1. I don't have truths to offer, only my own opinion based on hard facts. It's not for me to dress them up for parade as undisputable truths. I leave such job to preachers or politicians and I'm neither.
2. As for me I'm sorry if you find too hard to go thru my post. I just can't dispose of the facts to appeal for your appreciation.
3. It's your interpretation that people in Hollywood are naive simpletons. In my opinion generally they are sound professionals and I love Hollywood movies.

Aside from that, Iím quite fed up with those countries that wish to join the euro club and at the same time are so open in criticizing the French and the Germans. Itíd be better for them (and for us) if they applied for admission to the US&A.; They are welcome to all of them.
This does not mean Iím in favor of censorship. But one thing is the opinion of individuals, which should be free letís say the American way ñ another when politicians purport to speak in the name of their country. Living in Western Europe I should be sick and tired of many aspects of our life over here, including the thousands of beggars flowing into our countries from all over the east.
As for Saddam, I think it's a really big pile of shit. But when the people that did most to build it come and tell us it's time to dispose of such shit I look around for cover. Knowing the premise I'm afraid we'll end up in a still bigger pile.

Posted by: en9 at March 1, 2003 08:25 AM

dear en9,

Even the hardest of facts soften in the hands of someone with an agenda.
And, of course, it is good to know you are neither a preacher or politician. You almost had me fooled. Good for you.
What I meant is the sweeping assertion with which you open your short dissertation rather than ìhard factsî following it which may turn some people off. I personally found it rather comical that is why I kept on reading.
I apologize for not being clear enough. What I meant is that the history books which donít agree with your idea of what was and was not relevant on the western front were written by simpletons who confused Hollywood movies with hard facts and wrote their books during the commercial breaks in these movies. I agree with you that those who made these films are rather clever buggers. Their movies stink though. Well, most of them.

I admit I canít see what the next part of your letter has to do with the Battle of the Bulge, but I am, again, a bit amused to see that you are ìupset with those countries who wish to join the euro club, but are so open in criticizing the French and the Germanî. First you are dismissing (almost) the relevance of the West Front, and now you are upset by ìthose countriesî - just like Jacques and Gerhard. Oh my, whatís next? Will you start signing your post with ìnapoleonî? OK, this one is taken, but what about ìJulius Caesarî? Just jokingÖ
By the way, why ìopen criticizing the French and the Germanî (and upsetting you) and not the fact that ìthose countriesî agree with the official stand of UK, Italy, Spain Portugal, Denmark and, I think, another few should effect their chance for the EU membership? Is Germany and France synonymous with the EU?
But I think what bothers you most is the apocalyptic vision of ìthousands of beggars flowing into your countries from all over the eastî. Well, I think your fears are exaggerated, but if it really gets as unbearable as you fear I suggest you try to immigrate to the US. Your English is excellent (I think), you sound quite youngÖ well, I am quite sure you have many other qualities you could present the US with. No?...donít want to go? Well, tough luck dear en9. It seems you will somehow have to adjust to the ìthousands of beggars from all over the eastî.

About Saddam. Even if, as you believe, it was true that the people who made him are now trying to remove him I canít see anything wrong about it. On the contrary. As for looking around for cover I wish you good luck - whatever you mean by ìcoverî.

Posted by: Tadek at March 1, 2003 02:47 PM

Mr. Tadek, since you address me directly I guess I owe you a reply, even if your contribution all but keeps pumping in your interpretations. Let?s see if I can follow you on the same path.
I put together some facts such as figures, dates, citation of eyewitnesses, etc. - that's what I?d call historical facts and since in this field I'm not a professional I might have missed a lot. You could have come up with further facts that required corrections in my assumptions and a revision of my conclusions. But you didn't - not that I'm asking for it.
The reasons that prompted my historical digression are quite simple. I just wanted to remind some hot spirits - which nowadays abound in the States - that the US have but scanty war experiences. In war like in all human activities you get proficient only by practicing it with the best ? in that case preferably on your home grounds. I hinted too that I saw no reason why anybody should wish to become top dog in this field. It would be like a guy standing up to an onrushing truck just to prove that he is strong enough to take it. Perhaps that's what the British mean of an alliance where they put in the brains and the big fellow over there the brow. I'm not the first to get the feeling that in the US many like to wallow in a sort of lackadaisical unconcern for the world at large and its complexities - the myths of Mark Twain's "Innocents Abroad" still do apply. And this cannot but have a direct reflection on their political enterprises abroad, more often than not drifting to leeward like boats without keel.
The second part of my post has nothing to do with our historical divergence. Being public I wanted to go back to the headline and connect with our daily life here in Europe and our immediate concerns. I never said I'm upset or afraid, I said, "I should be sick and tired", which in polite English means I'm fed up with this rabble that's swarming over here. I remember with fondness not many years ago when they stayed put at home. At that time you'd have had to travel over there to meet them. Then all what they did was try and sell [themselves] for a few bucks. Did I make myself clear enough?
Now let me tell about the US and the reasons to move over there. I like that country, where I have relatives and friends and yes, my Hollywood movies. But here is my home and I would consider going only if forced by the sprawling bureaucracies that suck us dry. Though I'm afraid the US are catching up fast on the same road.
Let's finish with Saddam, coming in handy like a dessert. Sorry, but I can't really take him seriously, he is just an Arab. Like the saying goes, give ?em a hand and they?ll take your arm and some more - but why give them a hand in the first place (such as buying their oil). Quite likely when nincompoops start messing with shit there?ll be plenty flying around. Then you'd better duck - would you rather face it?

Posted by: en9 at March 2, 2003 01:37 PM

Mr. En9,

I will go directly to the only relevant part of your posting. I could not find anything of essence in the remaining space, so I conclude that the nasty piece I quote below is the actual point you want to make while everything else is a bland wrapping to render it an appearance of respectability.

You write:
??I said, "I should be sick and tired", which in polite English means I'm fed up with this rabble that's swarming over here. I remember with fondness not many years ago when they stayed put at home. At that time you'd have had to travel over there to meet them. Then all what they did was try and sell [themselves] for a few bucks. Did I make myself clear enough???
Absolutely! Actually, ?transparent? would be a better word here considering that you are offering here a full view of yourself - a person for whom the misery of people stricken by the (communist) calamity only evokes crass contempt. By the way, your observation reminds me of the musings of a certain extremely wealthy Arab I had the misfortune of meeting some years ago. He was shuttling between Eastern Europe and England doing business and amusing himself with ladies and, occasionally, boys. He maintained that the only difference between the inhabitants of the respective regions was the price they would ?try to sell their ass for? - as you, so charmingly, put it. Otherwise, he considered both rabble - to use your language again. It is interesting to notice the similarity of your respective callousness, crassness and bigotry, which considering your clearly expressed contempt for Arabs, makes it all rather ironic. Also, one may add that in some twisted way this Arabs? horizon was broader, and his views, for being more inclusive, more objective than yours.
Another thing is that you, of course, are aware of my Eastern European origins indicated in my earlier posting and therefore I can only interpret your nasty, contemptuous comment as a deliberate effort to offend - apparently a reprisal for my having a bit of innocent fun with your views. I could, of course, point out that some time ago some of the ?rabble? I belong to was your reliable partner during, for example, the Battle of England, the Normandy landing, capturing of Monte Casino and quite a few other episodes. But I don?t want to bore you.
Instead I shall say that your derisive, contemptuous remark allows me to reciprocate by revealing the true reason of my preceding postings. As gently indicated before I never had an intention to engage you on matters of history, world view, politics etc. I am not an expert and I don?t think you are. So it was not so much what you said but how you said it that made me respond to your comment on my post.
You see, I have been cursed with an irresistible urge to poke fun at people who take themselves seriously and the more overbearing and pompous a person acts the more overwhelming is this impulse of mine. Usually I can restrain myself, but when I meet someone who, like yourself, dismisses as irrelevant a whole theater of the most awesome drama in men?s history, announces his displeasure with ?those countries? and declares that he is ?sick and tired? thinking of the deluge of ?thousand beggars from all over the east? poised to swamp his cozy neighborhood as the consequence of ?those countries?? gate crashing his (euro) club - I had to succumb to this mischievous impulse again. Otherwise, I would have never bothered with reading your first post to the end and, naturally, I don?t intend to address you in the future.

Posted by: Tadek at March 3, 2003 06:00 AM

You stupid americans make me laugh.

Posted by: FranÁois at March 11, 2003 11:11 AM


You arrogant French make me sick.

Posted by: Carlos from the Philippines at May 8, 2003 09:11 AM

France beats America every time. I am neither European or American but I much prefer the french. The French are actually much nicer people, they are much smarter than Americans too. In fact the average American is thicker than the rest of the world. How did Bush get into power? By deception and the majority of the population fell for it.
On the subject of Imperialism America dominates, they want to take over Iraq, build their beloved Isreal their oil pipeline and then take over the world.
Such self rightouse people, this from a nation that wiped out an entire race of native Americans, thrived from black slavery, created the atomic bomb, killed millions in Vietnam and thanks to them Bin Laden threatens us from the caves of Afghanistan.

Posted by: Sulekha Hassan at May 30, 2003 10:07 AM

Dear Mr.(ms?) Hassan,

I think persons with a name like Hassan, Hussein, Mohammed, Abdullah etc. should abstain from making comments about ANYONEís democracy (not only American) lest they make total fools of themselves.
Instead they should concentrate on subject innate to their, so called ìcivilizationî. Undoubtly you can tell us a thing or two about the newest trends in burqa fashion, public flogging, hand and foot amputations, female genital mutilation, massacring and enslaving infidels and other great achievement of 21th century Islam. But democracyÖ? Since when democracy is ìhalalî? And where? In Mecca, Cairo, Damascus, Islamabad, Algiers, CasablancaÖ? Please do tell us, will you?
Westerners, whether French, American, or Lithuanians, do often disagree on many issues especially democracy, but only the silliest of them would seek, or claim an endorsement from a Mohammedan. He could just as well boast lobotomy!
You say that you ìmuch prefer the Frenchî? I can only imagine how relieved the Yanks must be to hear that. If only the countless millions of Mohammedans shared your fondness for the French and instead of trying to sneak into the US through every possible hole in the fence decided to settle in France everybody would be so much happier. Especially the French!

Posted by: Tadek at June 6, 2003 08:49 PM

Sulekha Hassan calls America ìTHE WORLDS BIGGEST PHONEY DEMOCRACY!î.
How comical considering this is from a member of Islam ñ THE WORLDíS BIGGEST AUTHENTIC BARBARISM.

Posted by: Tom Magnussen at June 7, 2003 06:01 AM

dear Tadek,
I study Modern History at the University of St.Andrews, UK. France certainly did not perform well at the start of the War; however General de Gaulle did go to London to keep on fighting. One of his worst enemies was actually FDR, who was unable to get above his petty hatred of de Gaulle and give him the vital support he needed (e.g the incident when Free French troops invaded Vichy occupied St.Pierre et Miquelon) To those who cry that the French are ungrateful for American liberation in 1944, bear in mind that the USA left most of the fighting to the Europeans and only intervened after Pearl Harbour. FDR recognised the collaborationist Vichy regime instead of de Gaulle's Free French, and this misplaced allegiance hurt the democratic, allied Gaullist movement.
A good book to read concerning the faliures of American foreign policy is Clyde Prestowich's (spelling?) work "Rogue Nation."
Regarding Tadek's criticism of the Euro-well try travelling in Romania; you will soon see that the Euro is preferred to the dollar. I personally never take dollars anywhere, Euros or Sterling are for me. I don't want to give a repulsive undemocratic arrogant nation full of idiots a free loan! Although a tip for Scottish people visiting the States: take some Scottish notes not just Bank of England notes as some American bank staff actually think that Scotland is not part of the UK, and strangely enough give better exchange rates for our notes than those from down south. Bizarre but true!

Posted by: THOMAS at October 21, 2003 11:49 AM
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