Wed, Mar 16, 2005 - Page 8 News List

We're fed up with France

By Tom Powell

Great editorial regarding the French push to sell weapons to China ("French perfidy must be challenged," March 14, p. 8). My thanks to the EU Referendum weblog for making me aware of your piece.

I don't know what the French want to accomplish with this, but frankly I and many Americans are tired of them. Selling arms to Beijing is both inexcusably irresponsible and undoubtedly immoral, two traits that seem to drive French foreign policy these days.

I was born in Taipei to a Taiwanese mother and a father who's retired from the US Air Force, so this is very personal to me. Those arms the French seem so determined to sell to China will be pointed at my relatives and those US servicemen and women who will be sent to defend them if the need arises.

While I hope your government is conscious of the US need for Chinese cooperation in resolving this nuclear crisis in North Korea, it is right for the Taiwanese people to declare their independence if and when they choose. It is also the obligation of other democratic peoples to come to a country's defense when its freedom is threatened.

Speaking as an American, I believe the Bush administration will do just that, with overwhelming support from the US public. But unfortunately, if China's bullying moves from rhetoric to action, we know whose side the French will be on. As in Iraq, when given the choice between freedom and dictatorship, the French are nothing if not consistent in their choices.

Just to let you know, I've written to my congressional representative Duke Cunningham asking him to see if Congress can put added pressure on the French. Isn't democracy great! Too bad the French seem to have forgotten that!

Tom Powell

San Diego, California

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