In a Reuters piece headlined “France Says World Against Bush Ultimatum on Iraq,” the office of French President Jacques Chirac is quoted as saying:
"Whatever the objective pursued, France recalls that only the Security Council has the authority to justify the use of force…”
Which means that puny little France believes it has a veto over American military policy, even when that policy is in self-defense or to remove a brutal mass-murderer like Saddam Hussein from power.
The UN has a terrible record of responding to crises. It stood by while hundreds of thousand were slaughtered in Rwanda. A Security Counsel resolution authoring intervention in Kosovo was withdrawn because Russia stated they would veto it. In fact, U.S. intervention in Panama, Grenada, Haiti, Kosovo, Bosnia and Afghanistan all occurred without UN approval.
And France habitually sends its military into Africa without UN approval – most recently to the Ivory Coast after civil war broke out – suggesting that to the French, it is only the U.S. that needs such explicit authorization.
If international law is to be interpreted as requiring the U.S. to obtain approval from Russia and France before using its military, then it is in the words of Charles Dickens, “a ass, a idiot.”
posted at 9:45 AM
Europe favors war by 21 countries to 5
Referring to a piece by Stratfor's George Friedman, Andrew Sullivan has a breakdown by country of where European governments stand on military intervention in Iraq. He observes:
something that should be borne in mind when you hear NPR, the BBC and others tell you that "Europe" opposes the war. By an overwhelming majority of 21 countries to five, Europe backs war, with five countries neutral. And of those 21, you have the second and fourth largest economies, Britain and Italy, the two biggest emerging powers, Spain and Poland, and the entire former Eastern bloc. It would be a huge majority in the future EU. So why isn't the story that Germany and France are now isolated on the continent?