It was claimed that the French were only against the war because they benefited economically from Saddam Hussein’s regime. In fact, however, it was the Americans who made a huge cut. In 2001 the US was Iraq’s leading trading partner. They consumed over 40 percent of his oil exports and their trade with the Iraqi dictator was worth $ 6 billion. By contrast, in 2001 only 8 percent of Iraqi oil exports went to France. Fox News led the way by associating Chirac with Saddam. It showed old footage with a joint appearance by the two men. It didn’t matter that the meeting had taken place in the 1970s. In contrast, the media did not show (ad nauseam) how to give Saddam the keys to the city of Detroit or how Donald Rumsfeld had visited Baghdad in the early 1980s when he was talking to Saddam about the course of the Iran-Iraqi war. This video of Rumsfeld hugging Saddam was obviously not worth looping on. It -104-
did not come once. Yes, okay, it was shown once, on the Oprah Winfrey talk show. In the studio there was an audible murmur through the audience as Rumsfeld teased Saddam. The common man was shocked that the devil was really our devil. Thanks Oprah! How quickly did we forget that the French of all people got the UN Security Council to condemn the attacks and to demand justice for the victims on the day after September 11th. Jacques Chirac was the first foreign head of state to travel to the United States after the attacks and offer us his condolences and pledge his support. One of the hallmarks of true friendship is that your friend dares to warn you if you want to screw up. That’s the kind of friend you should want. And that kind of friend has been France – until we whistled our best friend and bit into the whopper while freedom was fried. No. 6: The combo whopper with an extra salad: “The US is not invading Iraq alone, but with a coalition of the willing!” This is my favorite whopper because I always have to laugh when I think of it. To make it appear as if the international community greeted our invasion of Iraq with a benevolent smile, Bush said we were not the only ones who believed that military action against Saddam was the right thing to do take action against the threat to peace. A broad coalition is now being formed to meet the just demands of the -105-
Enforce the world.