May 15, 2003

Ooh, Ooh, Count Me!

Seems the French see conspiracies under the bed

"As part of the campaign of explanation we are undertaking in the United States, we have decided to count the untrue accusations which have appeared in the U.S. press and which have deeply shocked the French," spokeswoman Marie Masdupuy said.

To understand how amusant this all is, here's a quote from last February from this political pundit in France:

Mr. [Gilles] Corman denies that the French are anti-American, noting that they love Hollywood movies and fast food as much as anyone. But the Bush administration is viewed as "cowboys who don't know the rest of the world, think all Arabs are the same and that Iraq is the same as Afghanistan."

Les Americains charmants! Their entire, shallow contribution to the world: Hollywood movies and fast food. And their understanding of various other world peoples: nil.

Or check out Dominique in Le Monde this week (translation courtesy Bangkok Post):

Some people think that America, because of her power, is capable of acting more effectively than an international community deemed indecisive, or even impotent. We firmly believe that the United Nations embodies a universal conscience transcending states. Between impotence and unilateral, preventive action there is the path of collective responsibility and the difficult task of building a world democracy.

So the UN is a universal conscience? Here's Jeanne Kirkpatrick in the Interational Herald Tribune this week on the lack of standards in just one UN body:

The Human Rights Commission recently met in Geneva for six weeks to discuss, debate and decide issues concerning "the situation of human rights in the world." Since no standards exist, Libya was permitted to hold the chair, which resulted in a commission filled with an assortment of world-class rights abusers, including Syria, Sudan, Sierra Leone and Uganda.

How are they doing, say on the issue of Cuba executing dissidents:

the Commission rejected an amendment proposed by Costa Rica (E/CN.4/2003/L.74) by a roll-call vote of 15 in favour and 31 against, with 7 abstentions, which would have had [sic] created a new operative paragraph calling upon the Government of Cuba to ensure full respect for all human rights and fundamental freedom of expression and the right to a fair trail, and expressing concern about the recent detention, summary prosecution and harsh sentencing of numerous members of the political opposition.

The results were as follows:

In favour (15): Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Croatia, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Poland, Republic of Korea, Sweden, United Kingdom and United States.

Against (31): Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, China, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Guatemala, India, Kenya, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Syrian Arab Republic, Togo, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Venezuela, Viet Nam and Zimbabwe.

Abstentions (7): Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

Right, so the democracies of the world (including France) want to slap Cuba mildly on the wrist for its summary executions, and the odious dictatorships vote them down. This is the world that the French would visit upon us in the name of "universal conscience".

Vive les cowboys!

Posted by campbell at May 15, 2003 11:22 PM | TrackBack