Dangerous De-Liaisons: What's Really Behind the War Between France and the U.S.
WHAT'S REALLY BEHIND THE WAR BETWEEN FRANCE AND THE U.S.?
It's the most famous headline of the new century: "We Are All Americans."
And indeed, when Le Monde editor Jean-Marie Colombani wrote that headline—on September 12, 2001—it seemed that, amidst tragedy, Europe and the US. had become closer than at any time since World War II. Leading the remarkable upsurge in affection and support—as symbolized by Colombani's headline—was America's oldest ally, France.
Less than a year later much of western Europe was in opposition to the US, and the Franco-American relationship, in particular, had become one of bitter, and at times vitriolic, enmity. Tension escalated rapidly from childish name-calling ("Cheese-eating surrender monkeys") to the US Congressional cafeteria re-naming French fries "Freedom fries," to dramatic UN show-downs that froze global politics and kept the entire world on edge.
Is it simply that France opposed the US-led war against Iraq? Or is there something else—something older and more deep-seated—behind the French-American conflict?
In DANGEROUS DE-LIAISONS, a book that takes the unusual form of a conversation, two of the world's leading newspaper editors—one French, one American—investigate the reasons behind the disintegration of the alliance between the world's first revolutionary democracies, and analyze the implications of the break-up upon world stability.
With penetrating insight and quick wit, Walter Wells of The International Herald Tribune joins the man who wrote the "We Are All Americans" headline, Le Monde head Jean-Marie Colombani, in a series of increasingly tense—and increasingly absorbing—conversations. The two spar over our long, revolutionary history together . . . the explosive changes being wrought by terrorism . . . the rapidly developing economic impact of the emerging European Union . . . and more . . . to come into joint focus on the chilling question: Can our two nations once again unite to make the world a better place—or has our war only just begun?
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