“Why Chirac Risks All…”

…in his rush to thwart Bush.” That’s the title of this London Times article. I’m not sure the Times has the right diagnosis, but this is interesting:
“Until lately, the Paris Establishment largely subscribed to the US view that France would fall in behind the Americans, taking part in an Iraq war in some manner. The alternative would mean a US-led war outside the UN, an EU crisis, the exclusion of France from postwar Iraq and long-term damage with Washington.
“Some are arguing now that France could gain from resisting Washington to the end. This theory is based on an analogy with Vietnam. It supposes that the US and its allies will become bogged down in an internationally unpopular Iraqi conflict, fomenting instability in the Middle East. This would greatly play to the advantage of an independent-minded France.”
If Chirac is betting on another Vietnam, he is even more misguided than I thought.

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