"France may have thought it purchased some sort of immunity from terrorism by opposing the invasion of Iraq, and it might have done so if terrorists were other than incorrigible opportunists." - The Cincinnati Post (Editorial) 9/2/04
First off, let me put my two cents in to the whole head scarf ban in French schools: I disagree with it. The ban, which also covers other religious accessories such as large crosses and Jewish skull caps, is absolute nonsense and France should be ashamed for it. Imagine that: I'm a disagreeing with the policy of a country when I had previously agreed with them on an entirely different policy. Liberals, as well as those people with even basic intelligence, are able to do that. All others should be careful, otherwise they might bruise something.
Now, having said that, what kind of moron do they have writing editorials at the Cincinnati Post. France, and all the other countries that opposed the war, did not do so in order to seek immunity from terrorists. The editor's glib comment that terrorists are "incorrigible opportunists" is absolutely right, and it's for this reason that his assertion on France is absurd. France, Russia, Germany and many other countries opposed the war because they saw that it would create more terrorists than it would eliminate. More to the point, their goodwill with us was for the capture and punishment of those responsible for 9/11, and the Iraq invasion had nothing to do with that worthy cause.
Further on down this editorial is a mention of Spain, which is a country that Conservatives love to point to and yell "appeasement" until the cows come home. What they conveniently forget is that, even before the train bombings and the election, the country was wavering towards an Iraq pullout. The people of Spain saw how badly the occupation was going and realized that the American president was an extremely misguided person. The fact that some of their citizens were being held hostage at the time was an unfortunate coincidence. Just because the terrorists demand something of a country that the country was going to do anyway is no reason not to still do it. Only an immature and petulant leader would think that. After all, Dubya announced earlier this year a plan to pull all US troops out of Saudi Arabia, which happens to be one of Osama Bin Laden's chief demands of the US. Now who's doing the appeasing?
The editorial ends with a quote by Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, who can share the Skippy credentials for today, which states, "The French are deluding themselves if they think they can remain outside of this". No one can remain outside this. Terrorism is a problem of the whole world, and we need to all get on board. But just as a slick politician who will insert a controversial last minute rider to a bill that is sure to get passed, Dubya proposed the Iraq war and dared others to oppose him on threat of being alienated. Fortunately, most countries called him on it, and they are the ones that can stand tall for what they believed in and refusing to be bullied by a larger power. It's called "Integrity", and that's something the terrorists cannot touch.