World newspapers condemn French cowardice.


Blackleaf
#1
The Times of London said France suffered from "a loss of nerves" after it decided to send just a poxy 200 soldiers to Southern Lebanon. Even Italian newspapers (remember, Italy sent troops to Iraq alongside the US and Britain) have been poking fun at the French.
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BRUSSELS, Aug 18, 2006 (AFP) - France faced criticism in the European press on Friday for not offering more troops for southern Lebanon, which was seen as jeopardizing the UN force's difficult task of imposing peace.

"France has relaxed the pressure at a vital moment," The Times of London said, accusing Paris in an editorial of backing down from earlier indications that it was ready to play the leading role in the enlarged UN force.

"For France to have retreated from a key role to the realm of 'symbolic' gestures 'symbolises' only one thing: a French loss of nerve," it said after having previously praised French efforts to find a solution to the crisis.

Despite expectations that France would provide the bulk of a planned 15,000 strong UN force, Paris said Thursday it would send just 200 troops to reinforce the UN mission in Lebanon.

While it said France was prepared to command the enlarged force, it also called for safety guarantees for its soliders before making further commitments.

The enlarged peacekeeping force is the keystone in UN Resolution 1701, which outlines the ceasefire and a deployment of Lebanese and international troops to the south of the country to fill the vacuum left by withdrawing Israeli units.

Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita said: "France made a huge diplomatic effort so that resolution 1701 could be voted. Now it's France that is holding up the application of this resolution."

It said that "Paris does not want its soldiers to run the risk of being caught in the crossfire, with Hezbollah militants on one side and the Israeli army on the other".

Italian newspaper La Repubblica, said France had discovered "that it was afraid" while La Stampa said that Paris and Rome "fear another Bosnia".

Many potential contributors to the force, including France, have expressed concern over the role their soldiers will play and have sought assurances from the United Nations and Lebanon on the conditions of the deployment.

Defending the government's decision, leftwing French newspaper Liberation said France was right to demand a clearer mandate before sending more troops.

"When a country such as France is to commit thousands of men for years to a situation that has everything in place to become a quagmire, it's better to have a clear mission. Chirac is in his right to demand a minimum of ambiguities," it said.

In a similar vein, conservative French newspaper Le Figaro said: "This is a highly dangerous mission. If France volunteered to lead it's because it's an opportunity to make a comeback in the Middle East, where (France) has been sidelined by American unilateralism.

"However, the rest of the world cannot step aside and leave France holding the hot potato alone with a help from a few Europeans and the inevitable blue helmets from Fiji."

But Spanish newspaper El Mundo warned that caution could cost the force its effectiveness.

"The reticence shown by France to provide the majority of the 15,000 blue helmets could slow the deployment", it said.

While taking a broader European view, Spanish newspaper El Pais echoed a similar warning, saying that "European countries' doubts about the complexity and the risk of the UN mission in southern Lebanon endanger the deployment of the 15,000 troops."

www.ttc.org . . .
 
Blackleaf
#2
Meanwhile, Italy is sending up to 3000 troops.....


Italy to deploy up to 3,000 troops

James Sturcke and agencies
Friday August 18, 2006
Guardian Unlimited



Italy also sent soldiers to Iraq alongside the US, Britain, Poland and several other nations.



Italy's government formally agreed today to send peacekeeping troops to Lebanon after France said it would only commit a token force.

The Italian prime minister, Romano Prodi, said a decision on troop numbers would be made in the coming days but officials have previously declared that up to 3,000 soldiers could quickly be deployed to southern Lebanon.

The announcement came after the French defence minister, Michèle Alliot-Marie, was forced to defend her country's decision to send far fewer troops than expected to help maintain the fragile ceasefire between Hizbullah fighters and Israel.

"I can't let it be said or implied that France is not doing its duty in the Lebanese crisis," the minister told the French radio station RTL. "Since the start of the crisis, France is on the front line and it is the top contributor."

France announced yesterday it was offering just 200 extra troops to bolster its 200-strong contingent which currently heads the Unifil force in southern Lebanon. The UN wants 3,500 troops to arrive within 10 days to supplement the existing Unifil force, to be followed eventually by 11,500 more.

Italy has been trying to take a major role in efforts to end the fighting. Mr Prodi, however, reiterated that he had been assured by UN officials, including the secretary general Kofi Annan, that the peacekeepers would not be charged with disarming Hizbullah. In a telephone conversation on Wednesday with Mr Annan, Mr Prodi had called for "a clear mandate, without any ambiguity and with very precise rules of engagement, for the soldiers who will be deployed", the prime minister's office said.

Doubts over the role of peacekeepers have made countries reluctant to commit troops. The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, said she would not send combat soldiers but may offer naval assistance.

In France, Ms Alliot-Marie said that her country was willing to continue leading the force as it expands but reiterated the need for clear policy of engagement. The UN force is expected to work with Lebanese soldiers who began deploying yesterday south of the Litani river, about 20 miles from the Israeli border.

"You have to tell the troops why they are there. To support the Lebanese army, certainly, but to what extent? In what fields? Secondly, we also need to know what are the material and judicial means at our disposal," said Ms Alliot-Marie.

"You can't send in men and tell them: 'Look at what is going on, [but] you don't have the right to defend yourself or to shoot'."

French officials are particularly concerned about how the expanded force is expected to interact with Hizbullah.

Among the countries that have offered troops are Indonesia, Bangladesh and Malaysia. The Malaysian deployment is contentious in Israel as it does not recognise the Jewish state.

"We're going to be on Lebanese territory... We're not going to be on Israeli territory," the Malaysian foreign minister, Syed Hamid Albar, said today in response to Israeli concerns.

Malaysia has offered between 850 and 1,000 troops to Unifil. Yesterday, the UN got pledges of 3,500 troops for the force, with Bangladesh making the largest offer of up to 2,000 troops.

The Lebanese army's deployment marked a first step toward extending government control in the Hizbullah stronghold that national troops have largely kept out of for four decades.

The Lebanese army reached the country's southern border with Israel for the first time today, sending a sole patrol vehicle through Kfar Kila which holds huge significance as the place where Israeli forces withdrew in 2000, ending an 18-year occupation.

The army vehicle, flying a large Lebanese flag and carrying just two soldiers clad in green camouflage uniforms, passed by the Fatima Gate a few metres from the border but did not stop.

Villagers throwing rice and Hizbullah supporters holding banners have welcomed the country's army to the south. So far the troops have deployed mostly to predominantly Christian towns, including Qleia and Marjayoun.

Overnight, Lebanese forces arrived in the largely Shia Muslim village of Khiam in the same area, said Lebanese Brigadier General Charles Sheikhani.

Gen Sheikhani said he would not deploy troops permanently to Kfar Kila until a border fence destroyed by invading Israeli troops last month was repaired and all Israeli troops had withdrawn.

At least 845 Lebanese were killed in the 34-day conflict, including 743 civilians, 34 soldiers and 68 Hizbullah members. Israel says it killed about 530 guerrillas. On the Israeli side, 118 soldiers and 39 civilians were killed, many from the 3,970 Hizbullah rocket strikes.

The deployment marks the first time the Lebanese army has moved in force to a region that was held by Palestinian guerrillas in the 1970s and by Hizbullah since Israeli troops withdrew from the area in 2000.


guardian.co.uk
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Quote:

"You have to tell the troops why they are there. To support the Lebanese army, certainly, but to what extent? In what fields? Secondly, we also need to know what are the material and judicial means at our disposal," said Ms Alliot-Marie.

"You can't send in men and tell them: 'Look at what is going on, [but] you don't have the right to defend yourself or to shoot'."

In other words: "We're scared! Don't send us there!"
 
EastSideScotian
#3
Why am I not surprised.....As far as I am concerded, France should get its own problems with Muslim peolple and Jewish people before they send troops anywher ein the middle east. Before you know it Isreal and Lebadon childern wont be able to worship their God, or wear their religious head gear to school.
 
blugoo
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf


"While it said France was prepared to command the enlarged force..."
www.ttc.org . . .

I'll bet it has no problem commanding. What cheek. "Oh, we won't actually make a large contribution to the cause, but we are perfectly willing to order around those that do."

France needs to be exposed for what it's become. A country that likes to act (and talk) like it's a leading world power, but shies away from the risk and responsibility such a position requires.
 
earth_as_one
#5
Even though France will only commit 400 troops, that's still 400 more troops than Germany and Denmark committed no ground troops but offered to patrol the Mediterranean sea off Lebanon.

http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,...139826,00.html

The focus has now moved to Italy, Spain and Belgium, which can move forces to Lebanon quickly to meet the UN's own 15-day deadline for immediate deployment of 3,500 soldiers with the rest of the force in place by Nov. 4.

10% of the total force are French. What % comes from Lancashire?
 
earth_as_one
#6
Quote:

The French president left open the possibility that France might eventually provide more soldiers and said some 1,700 French troops positioned near Lebanon would be made available to the United Nations but would not be placed under UN control.

France and Italy have demanded the UN set out clear ground rules of the force's mission and methods before formally committing troops to bolster the force.

http://story.malaysiasun.com/p.x/ct/...ec559446b5c0b/

Are the objectives clearly defined?
Powell Doctrine

Are the rules fair to both sides or designed to give one side an advantage over the other.

Can UN Peacekeepers engage both Hezbollah and Israel equally if either violate the terms of the truce? Or is the UN just tasked to accurately report the level of compliance by both sides, defend themselves and not intervene.

I can understand why countries might be cautious about putting their finest in harms way without rules of engagement and clear objectives.
 
blugoo
#7
If France wasn't sure what they were getting themselves into, why were they so anxious to lead it?

Could it be France covets the prestige in leading an international force in a world trouble-spot, but doesn't want the possible risk or sacrifice that comes with it?
 
Logic 7
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

The Times of London said France suffered from "a loss of nerves" after it decided to send just a poxy 200 soldiers to Southern Lebanon. Even Italian newspapers (remember, Italy sent troops to Iraq alongside the US and Britain) have been poking fun at the French.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------




BRUSSELS, Aug 18, 2006 (AFP) - France faced criticism in the European press on Friday for not offering more troops for southern Lebanon, which was seen as jeopardizing the UN force's difficult task of imposing peace.

"France has relaxed the pressure at a vital moment," The Times of London said, accusing Paris in an editorial of backing down from earlier indications that it was ready to play the leading role in the enlarged UN force.

"For France to have retreated from a key role to the realm of 'symbolic' gestures 'symbolises' only one thing: a French loss of nerve," it said after having previously praised French efforts to find a solution to the crisis.

Despite expectations that France would provide the bulk of a planned 15,000 strong UN force, Paris said Thursday it would send just 200 troops to reinforce the UN mission in Lebanon.

While it said France was prepared to command the enlarged force, it also called for safety guarantees for its soliders before making further commitments.

The enlarged peacekeeping force is the keystone in UN Resolution 1701, which outlines the ceasefire and a deployment of Lebanese and international troops to the south of the country to fill the vacuum left by withdrawing Israeli units.

Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita said: "France made a huge diplomatic effort so that resolution 1701 could be voted. Now it's France that is holding up the application of this resolution."

It said that "Paris does not want its soldiers to run the risk of being caught in the crossfire, with Hezbollah militants on one side and the Israeli army on the other".

Italian newspaper La Repubblica, said France had discovered "that it was afraid" while La Stampa said that Paris and Rome "fear another Bosnia".

Many potential contributors to the force, including France, have expressed concern over the role their soldiers will play and have sought assurances from the United Nations and Lebanon on the conditions of the deployment.

Defending the government's decision, leftwing French newspaper Liberation said France was right to demand a clearer mandate before sending more troops.

"When a country such as France is to commit thousands of men for years to a situation that has everything in place to become a quagmire, it's better to have a clear mission. Chirac is in his right to demand a minimum of ambiguities," it said.

In a similar vein, conservative French newspaper Le Figaro said: "This is a highly dangerous mission. If France volunteered to lead it's because it's an opportunity to make a comeback in the Middle East, where (France) has been sidelined by American unilateralism.

"However, the rest of the world cannot step aside and leave France holding the hot potato alone with a help from a few Europeans and the inevitable blue helmets from Fiji."

But Spanish newspaper El Mundo warned that caution could cost the force its effectiveness.

"The reticence shown by France to provide the majority of the 15,000 blue helmets could slow the deployment", it said.

While taking a broader European view, Spanish newspaper El Pais echoed a similar warning, saying that "European countries' doubts about the complexity and the risk of the UN mission in southern Lebanon endanger the deployment of the 15,000 troops."

www.ttc.org . . .


That is pretty funny coming from italian-newspapers, have they forgotten that they also supported Germany/Nazi and at the same time supporting the occupation of france during world war 2?

Every Major news-papers in england ,united states,probably in italy too,and australia has been on france case since 2003, when they refused the war in iraq, now they are giving you back what they received from you, i guess it is a fair change.
 
cortex
#9
This whole israeli-palestinian fiasco can be traced back to the incompetance , ineptitude , and cowardice of the the British phuck-up circa 1945-48 vis a vis their so called protectorate of --palestine---
thank you britain for the middle east --and for much of africas rape and for india vs pakistan and so much more-thank you -for helping Franco win the Spanish civil war and thank you now for supporting your good friend and fellow war criminal america and its bush.

vive la france and phuck england
 
Toro
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by earth_as_one

Even though France will only commit 400 troops, that's still 400 more troops than Germany and Denmark committed no ground troops but offered to patrol the Mediterranean sea off Lebanon.

I don't think Denmark will be committing any troops anywhere in the Islamic world anytime soon.