Montag, Oktober 24, 2005

Why there is still hope for France...

I've been bashing France here regularly, not so much because I hate France - I don't, and have spent almost a year there over the last 35 years - but because I despise corrupt and incompetent politicians who do unintentionally as much damage to France as they intentionally do it to the US.

But this is why I think there is still hope for France: the simple recognition that the populistic politics that have driven the last several administrations is doomed not only to failure, but will leave France worse off than before.

This, for me, is the key quote:

The spokesman of the Quay of Orsay [French Foreign Ministry] specified that the two lifetime ambassadors had taken part in activities "as private citizens, engaged in after their departure and retirement." But Boidevaix has told the [French] magistrate: "the French administration knew of the existence of my contract" (Le Monde, October 13). This business, hardly dealt with in the media, makes obvious the worst suspicions of Paris' pro-Arabic diplomacy, and came at the expense of our American allies at the time of the Iraqi crisis. Can one really call this honor?

Obviously, it isn't. Recognition that there is a problem is the first step towards correction and reconciliation. And there's no real reason for the US and France to be at odds (and indeed behind the scenes there is significant cooperation), and there is every reason for France to come clean.

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