Article written in the spirit of Franco-American friendship

Thomas Friedman NYT scapegoating the French.

Sue Smith | 22.09.2003 16:59

Thomas Friedman’s recent column in the San Diego Union Tribune America’s War with France over Iraq hardly seems the work of someone using a clean lens: ‘It’s time we Americans came to terms with ‘ France is not just our jealous rival, France is becoming our enemy.’ What might he presume that France be jealous’

War with France over Iraq is BS. By Sue Smith.

Thomas Friedman’s recent column in the San Diego Union Tribune America’s War with France over Iraq hardly seems the work of someone using a clean lens: ‘It’s time we Americans came to terms with ‘ France is not just our jealous rival, France is becoming our enemy.’ Some prestigious Americans of the main stream media have dubbed France’s behaviors and attitudes toward the U.S. as campaign Operation America Must Fail, but the real question is what is it that constitutes failure and how do people presume to define failure’ What might he presume that France be jealous’ To be jealous is to assume that the U.S. has legally or coercively in possession of something worth ‘having,’ that is some possession.

Several talking heads have argued that we Americans are in the business of exporting democracy and are involved in the honorable enterprise of Nation Building. Yet our foreign policy more consistently shows that we are exporting our own brand of capitalism. Our American brand of capitalism, and this is not an attack on capitalism per se, is to make sure that certain Western multinational corporations can go into foreign countries and extract the resources of that nation, and its people, for a very nice profit to those equity owners. Mind you we did not go into Iraq to teach them, the Iraqis, how to be capitalist entrepreneurs and start their own oil companies. Rather we went into Iraq for already established major international and hegemonic oil companies to control those resources, at least this seems so to many of us. This is to say we are not exporting some abstract idea about capitalist economics but rather we Americans are spending tax dollars so that certain and specific corporations can generate profits for stock owners, be they individuals or portfolio managers, and none of these corporations, or there equity owners have been asked to help pay for any of the billions we average Joes are expected to shell out in taxes. For example, it is known that there are significantly more dollars to be made drilling oil in the Middle East per barrel than in the U.S. The Return On Investment, ROI, is much better.

When judging a country by its behavior rather then its rhetoric we can see that the U.S. was quite competent in securing the oil production apparatus when the war was over, but was incompetent regarding our so called exporting of democracy, which any administration could have surmised it would be regarding Iraq. Jim Hoagland, A pivotal time for President Bush, talking head of the Washington Post acknowledged Bush’s absence of hubris in his Sunday night speech regarding Hussein’s army demise. America is forced to get sober.

So why should we Americans be surprised that other countries should not want to see the U.S. succeed at its apparent objectives, especially when they also realize that our people are living beyond their ecological and resource boundaries, in which case we force our way into other countries to appropriate those resources of those territories’ At least is this not the way some others might see the situation’not so much jealousy as aware of things like what is and is not inappropriate piracy’

Yet now that we have dug our self in a nice mess we react in the way of the spoiled child and cry macho defamation about how unfair are those other cultures that disagreed and are hence uncooperative with us. Therefore, those who dare openly dissent against our supposedly supreme motives and our supposedly flawless thinking are then the bad guys who bafflingly are not willing to help us in our upright honor of being the world’s foremost beacon of humanity and magnanimity.

As far as Nation Building goes, the jargon use to be national self-determination. This principle of self-determination recognized the right of people to determine their own political destiny, as opposed to having other cultures impose values and behaviors on to them. Yet any pundit who works those major newspapers and media could have read Ramsey Clark’s The Fire This Time: US War Crimes in the Gulf, or his organization’s Challenge to Genocide, ordered via, or Milan Rai’s War Plan Iraq: Ten Reasons Against the War to learn how much and for how long we engaged in nation and people destruction. After all Hoagland does write, and I quote: ‘Terrorism operates from a template. It is intended to provoke paralyzing fear, anger and humiliation, and to break a will of a population on which atrocities are visited.’

Despite the fact that there is a lot of hot air in Southern California, the San Diego Union Tribune regularly imports it from various columnist of the Washington Post, none mind you, who ever consider themselves God’ gift to thought, none who would ever imply they were the very paragon’s of light. Charles Krauthammer, the other day in The Democrats’ alternative for Iraq informs us na’ve people of the west coast that democrats haven’t been very forthcoming in spirit to goal along with the program. Can you believe they are plying for votes like the little punks most really are’that is basing their rhetoric on what gets them elected rather than what the hearts says’ Somehow this behavior gives the news pundits like Krautty the moral high ground; but he doesn’t mince words about Iraq being of strategic importance, as opposed to Afghanistan. Krautty’s mere slick wordiness can cover up how much we care about the little people in the opium den of warlords and their Mafia connections. He basically implies: forget them ‘ they are not important, why should we build a non-corrupt nation there. Rather he equally ends his little speech about how the French should get serious!

Granted Hussein was a monster as the Administration will not let us forget, but was he not our monster’ Did we not make him like an entrepreneur is made with an investor willing to loan money’ Was it not true that he became our enemy when he nationalized the oil’ Yet according to CK Iraq has a civilized society and therefore they can be made US friendly. Perhaps people in the rest of the world are not as na’ve as those in the Fox news empire and the East Coast establishment would hope’ But according to Mr. Friedman if France were serious it would be sending an army of 25,000 troops and $5 billion for reconstruction. Do not the people on the street of France have any say in the matter’after all they are just democratic peons’