Running Scared: Observations of a Former Republican
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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

We're ever so popular

posted by Jazz at 2/08/2005 08:17:00 AM


This will probably be a quote which eventually makes it into Bartlett's. Apparently the woman who is now the United States' top diplomat, Condi Rice, only 18 months ago said,
"Forgive Russia. Ignore Germany. Punish France."
This was in response to the question of how to deal with the largest European nations who wouldn't support Bush's private adventure in Iraq. You remember... those same ignorant, annoying little countries who kept on stupidly and stubbornly trying to convince everyone of their crackpot theories that we needed to keep up inspections to make sure Saddam really had WMD's, and that maybe he really wasn't involved with bin Laden?

The New York Times spoke with French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier about four more years of Bush and how he plans on dealing with Condi.

The French have to coexist with President Bush for four more years, Ms. Rice is now America's top diplomat, and American-organized elections have taken place in Iraq. So for France, a new era of political realism is beginning, starting with Ms. Rice's visit to Paris on Tuesday and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's arrival in Nice the next day for a NATO defense ministers' meeting.

"The situation has changed," Mr. Barnier said in a recent interview over lunch at the Foreign Ministry, adding that Ms. Rice's instruction to punish France has been forgiven.

As usual, Bush and his war minded cohorts look to be getting a free pass from the more civilized sectors of the international community. Why? Mr. Barnier is new to the job, and his predecessor was very openly hostile towards George W. Bush and his atrocious adventure.
A low-key expert on European integration, the foreign minister lacks the domineering personality and romantic vision of France's greatness of his predecessor, Dominique de Villepin, which so infuriated State Colin L. Powell when he was secretary of state.

"I want to get to know Condi Rice, to establish a personal relationship with her," said Mr. Barnier, who has already been to Washington to meet her since Mr. Bush's re-election and pledges to visit the United States every three months.

He underscored that he is "different" from Mr. de Villepin, the man who emerged as the most vocal and relentless critic of the Bush administration's march to war against Iraq. Still, Mr. Barnier characterized his predecessor as "a friend" who is "passionate," not "arrogant."

I suppose anyone would look more moderate after that guy. Too bad, though. At least he had some spine. The French were right. Bush was wrong. It's rather pitiful to see them kowtowing now.