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Subject: Kerry, Chirac and Schroder: Ménage à Trois

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Date Posted: 20:05:53 06/23/04 Wed

George C. Landrith

Just months ago, John Kerry made headlines when he said, “I’ve met foreign leaders who can’t go out and say this publicly, but they look at you and say, ‘You’ve got to win this, you’ve got to beat [Bush]…’” When pressed to name the leaders, Kerry demurred.

Reporters subsequently discovered Kerry had not met with any world leaders during the campaign. But this commentary is not about whether Kerry is truthful. The more interesting question is – why did Kerry think endorsements from anti-American foreigners would impress American voters?

Most Americans logically assumed Kerry was talking about French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroder. Why wouldn’t they hope Kerry wins? Kerry has effectively promised to give France, Germany and the United Nations the power to determine if and when America can defend itself.

Kerry has sharply criticized Bush for not obtaining the approval of France, Germany, and the U.N. for our war on terrorism. Kerry argues it is not legitimate for the U.S. to act unilaterally to protect itself. Instead, Kerry says the U.N. must "provide the necessary legitimacy…." Kerry has avoided explaining why he thinks the President of the United States needs the permission of France or the U.N. to defend America.

It is clear there were no circumstances under which France or the U.N. would have supported America in Iraq. France had negotiated too many secret, profitable and illegal business deals with Saddam Hussein. The U.N. was skimming millions from the “Oil for Food” program.

France and the U.N. did not oppose Bush because they thought his policy was wrong. They opposed him because his policy would expose their illegal dealings and end the flow of Saddam’s blood money. With this in mind, why does Kerry criticize President Bush for not obtaining the support of France, the U.N and others? Why did Kerry think Americans would be impressed that he was supported by disingenuous, anti-American foreign leaders?

Perhaps it is because Kerry is part of the blame-America-first-crowd and Europe’s anti-Americanism only reinforces his own views. Thus, he does not perceive their grotesque bias or their corruption. After all, John Kerry is no stranger to anti-American rants. He said, “Our democracy is a farce.” And he made sweeping accusations against American Vietnam veterans, repeatedly calling them drug addicts, rapists, murderers and war criminals.

Watching France celebrate the recent sixtieth anniversary of D-Day – the U.S. led invasion to liberate Europe from German control – one was left to conclude the French liberated themselves. Nations who had nothing to do with France’s liberation were given equal footing with America. Oddly, Chirac placed Germany above nations who spilt blood and spent treasure to liberate France from German domination. Schroder thanked France and Russia by name for liberating Germany from the German Nazis. But he could not bring himself to properly acknowledge America’s indispensable leadership.

Chirac and Schroder implied France led the war effort. The truth is Germany rolled through France without any significant resistance. America, and to a lesser degree Britain, liberated France. The French simply were not a factor. They have not been an important world player since Napoleon’s defeat two centuries ago. But to anti-American European minds, France liberated itself and Germany too and America was just a footnote.

These are the folks John Kerry is comfortable with. These are the people whose support Kerry seeks and values. The problem is these folks are so anti-American, they cannot acknowledge what is obvious to schoolchildren – America liberated France from Hitler’s domination.

Americans should ask themselves if John Kerry would provide the sort of leadership America needs. Is America prepared to have a president whose worldview more closely resembles Jacques Chirac’s than Ronald Reagan’s? Kerry called Reagan’s presidency one of “moral darkness” and bragged he was “proud” to have “stood against Ronald Reagan, not with him.” Are we prepared to have a president that is more likely to please France than America?

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