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05-23-03, 01:34 AM #1
Powell: France. Let's not pretend it didn't happen
May 22, 2003
Powell tells France: 'You are not forgiven'
from charles bremner in paris
Colin Powell, left, and Dominique de Villepin in Paris today
France and the United States proclaimed a new start after their feud over Iraq today but Colin Powell, the Secretary of State, made clear that Paris was not forgiven and President Chirac could expect a bumpy ride when he meets President Bush next week.
On the French side, M Chirac and Dominique de Villepin, his Foreign Minister, showed that for all the talk of reconciliation, Paris would still stand up against the American-centred view of the world at the summit of the G8 group of nations in France on June 1.
General Powell, on his first visit to Paris since the UN battle over Iraq, welcomed France's vote, along with those of Russia and Germany, for the Security Council resolution lifting sanctions today and endorsing the US-led administration of Iraq.
This, he said, was a first step on the path back to better relations.
"Does that mean that the disagreements of the past are forgotten? No, it wasn't a very pleasant time," he said. "We have to work our way through that."
He added: "Let's not paper it over. Let's not pretend it didn't happen". Asked if he continued to believe that France should be punished for opposing the United States, he said it was "appropriate to draw conclusions and consequences follow".
General Powell, who first spoke of punishing France last month, singled out plans by the US Defence Department to downgrade military cooperation with Paris.
M de Villepin, who was hosting a session of Foreign Ministers from Britain Russia, Germany and the other members of the G8 group, cast the UN vote as a gesture of fence-mending after the feud among allies. "The war has taken place. Now it is time to restore the unity of the international community," said Mr de Villepin.
M Chirac's aides said that, with war and peace no longer the issue, Paris was more ready to compromise with Washington. However, M de Villepin skirmished publicly with General Powell today.
For France, the New York vote meant that "the UN is back" after America's go-it-alone war and that the world organisation was conferring legitimacy on post-war Iraq, he said.
The chaos in Iraq and the past week's terrorist attacks had proved France right in its belief that only the United Nations could ensure peace and that the war would breed more violence by Islamic extremists, he said.
Taking a swipe back at his French colleague, General Powell said: "We are not achieving new legitimacy with this resolution that did not exist in the past."
Today's Franco-American exchanges, made in separate news conferences, reflected the gulf still separating Paris and Washington despite France's attempts to sweeten the atmosphere ahead of the G8 summit in the Alpine spa town of Evian.
Over the past two days, M Chirac and M de Villepin have again set out the French view that the world needs a "multi-polar" system, code for the idea that American power must be balanced by that of Europe, China and other centres.
While economic stagnation and the Iraq aftermath will set the tone at Evian, M Chirac has used his prerogative as host to set an agenda loaded with themes that do not inspire enthusiasm from Mr Bush. These range from sustainable development and the environment to ways of softening the impact of globalisation on the developing world.
In his pose as apostle for "humane globalisation", M Chirac has been busy wooing leaders of the anti-capitalist movement who want to turn the Evian summit into a jamboree of protest.
Although some hardliners want to restage protests of the type seen in Seattle in 2000 and Genoa in 2001, the mainstream "alternative-globalisation" movement sees France as something of an ally, especially since its opposition to the Anglo-American war in Iraq.
The protestors are to be corralled at Annemasse, 20 miles down Lake Geneva from Evian, and some 6,000 security police from France, Switzerland and Germany have been assigned to keep the peace.
M Chirac took another crack at the Americans today, telling a conference on drugs that the world's worst example was now Afghanistan, which has become the main supplier of heroin to Europe since the US invasion ended the Taleban regime there.
05-23-03, 06:32 AM #2
France - not gorgiven
Now check this link and see if it doesn't remind you to tell France to KISS OUR A**! http://corpsnco.homestead.com/ThanksFrance.html It should make your blood boil!
05-23-03, 08:44 AM #3
France is on my Sh** List
05-23-03, 11:25 AM #4firstsgtmikeGuest Free Member
Here's The Solution, as presented by Frank Emerson.
The Palestinians, understandably, want a homeland of their own. So far, it doesn't seem chopping up Israel even smaller than it already is will be a satisfactory solution for either side.
So, why not give France to the Palestinians?
The French have already stated that nothing is worth fighting for. France certainly has more room, better irrigation and soil than the West Bank or the Gaza Strip. The houses are nicer and tourists will visit, helping the economy. Plus, there's no pesky IDF troops to hassle with.
Heck, the French won't even fight back ... and they may not even notice their country's gone.
It's possibly the perfect solution!
And how about a name for this new "Franco-Palestine" territory?? How about calling it Frankenstein?
Let there be peace on Earth and let it begin in France.
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