No Backing Down

The US is trying to push through a compromise
UN resolution on Iraq
that includes more power for the UN Security Council while still allowing the US the option of using force if necessary. The compromise is designed to get France on board and show a united front against Saddam.

However, I believe we’re fundamentally misunderestimating the arrogance of the French. They don’t want us going to Iraq because it upsets their cozy business relationship with Saddam Hussein, and it proves that they’re not important on the world stage anymore. If anything, the only reason we’re bothering with this compromise is to placate the French.

Unfortunately, when it comes right down to it, France doesn’t matter. France is militarily worthless to us, their government has been treating us like wayward children, and they have very little power on the world stage. The only thing France has left is its veto power in the Security Council, and that’s why they’re being so obstinant. They want to make a grand point that they still matter and their policies should be followed. Chirac says that he wants to use force only as the last possible option – but what he means is that he doesn’t want to use force at all. Until Baghdad kills a million Americans or Israelis, the French government will choose to ignore the threat posed by the Hussein regime.

It’s come down to a game of chicken. Given the Gaullic predilection for fleeing in the face of adversity, it’s clear who will win. If the French hold up an Iraq resolution we’ll act without the support of the UN and the UN will lose all credibility. If France agrees to the resolution, they save some face, but they also don’t get their way. Either way, France loses, but the decision they make will decide if they take the UN down with them.

3 thoughts on “No Backing Down

  1. “Misunderestimating”? Jay, you are better than that.

    On the issue you raise, I think the French secretly support us, but can’t support us publicly because they have 8 million Arabs in their country. If I’m right, now that the language that authorizes military action is taken out of the new resolution and I hope replaced with the ambiguous term, “consequences,” the French should get on-board with a one-resolution approach.

    The Chirac government is moving more and more in tune with the War on Terrorism. That should be noted.

  2. I totally agree with Mr. Reding on this one. I do think that France will eventually side with the US, they are just being stubborn and arrogant. Which they are fantastic at!

  3. The French are relevant- they can help provide the $$$$ that we would need to successfully invade and rebuild Iraq.

    We don’t need millitary support for our “coalition”- we need cold hard cash. We don’t have the money to do this on our own.

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