The Null Device

punishing France

After the dust has settled on Iraq, Washington's attention has turned to one question: how to punish France. It is expected that France will be actively ostracised from diplomatic bodies and efforts, and effectively stripped of its "global power" status. So far, nobody has mentioned having "no plans" to invade France, so the possibility is probably not being actively considered.

(If they were to consider it, they could always do so on the pretext that France has lost its international legitimacy as a power and thus its right to legitimately possess nuclear weapons (unlike, say, Israel and Pakistan). That could serve as the litmus test of the New American Century; whether a state can maintain that sort of power after having fallen into disfavour with Washington.)

There are 12 comments on "punishing France":

Posted by: Paulo http:// Wed Apr 23 12:22:09 2003

Makes me cry with incredulity! How is that possible that a democratic government might just avenge itself that way (it's not only about France). The worse part being how they drag the american people into that anger against those who dare hampering their march for the greater good!

Posted by: Ben B Wed Apr 23 23:40:09 2003

Despite all the American bigtalk, there's a limit to the amount of power France can be stripped of by the yanks. Don't forget, France has muscle. They still have colonial possessions. They have a big, capable military - and they're prepared to use it. And, most importantly, they have the freakin' bomb.

Posted by: acb Thu Apr 24 05:17:10 2003

How would the French military fare against the US and UK (OK, and Australia, though that won't change anything)?

Posted by: pem Thu Apr 24 09:00:38 2003

Funny. Very funny. War against Iraq is one thing (no weapons, only men with guns). War against a nuclear country (the fourth in terms of power) is just another (don't forget the USA won't make war against Noth Korea just because they have one nuke)

Posted by: Graham http:// Thu Apr 24 09:40:18 2003

I think what's really pissing the Yanks off is France being so chummy with Germany. Hmm.

Posted by: Alex http:// Thu Apr 24 09:45:59 2003

All your oil are belong to Euro.

Posted by: Paulo http:// Thu Apr 24 12:18:58 2003

Are you fools ? Noone is even thinking of a war between the US and France!! Just remember our peoples are (partly) the same. Furthermore, do you think other european countries would let that happen ?

Posted by: acb Thu Apr 24 14:06:07 2003

On the contrary; the more closely related (historically or culturally) two groups of people are related, the more likely they are to war. Take a look at Northern Ireland (two Christian sects fighting over tribal identity defined by a doctrinal schism), or the Middle East (there was a genetics paper published a few years ago showing that Israeli Jews and Arabs are genetically indistinguishable), or indeed the ancient historical feuds between Britain (and its French-speaking Norman aristocracy) and France.

Speaking of which, there is a lot of ancestral enmity to France in Britain. The murdochs have been able to whip that up, and it may be enough to get public support for giving the old froggies a black eye. Given the amount of "let's invade France" sentiment amongst the more triumphalist types in the US (which has no historical enmity with France, unlike Britain), I'd say that British support could be even more likely.

Posted by: Graham http:// Thu Apr 24 14:38:57 2003

Yeah! Bomb the Chunnel! That'll teach those frogs a lesson... Bah.

Posted by: acb Thu Apr 24 16:17:56 2003

When the Chunnel was being built, the bastard tabloids were scare-mongering about the perfidious French releasing rabid foxes into Britain through the tunnel just out of pure nastiness.

Posted by: Kurt http:// Tue Apr 29 02:32:15 2003

acb: I think the historical association between closely related groups and war is one of geography. Before the 20th century, it was rather difficult to go to war with people you weren't able to march an army to; plus widely geographically seperate cultures weren't in competition for the same resources, the way that neighbors are.

Posted by: Ben Tue Apr 29 16:08:34 2003

Didn't Napoleon have a fiendish plan to tunnel under the channel in order to march an invading army under the channel?

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