Monday, July 4, 2011

Merci la France

As we celebrate, this day, our national independence, let us recall that France came to our aid, in our hour of need;  as we later came to hers, in both world wars.
Such memories endure.   My wife, who would have been born a Susan Mary, arrived on Bastille day:  accordingly, her father, who had served in the war, named her Suzanne Marie.   And when she married me, she got a Gallic surname as well (Anglo-Norman, a legacy of the Conquest).

This alliance has at times been troubled;  most recently by a strain in our relations -- and stain on our reputation -- the hounding of DSK.
We are not allowed, in America, to go off on someone for being Jewish, or Black, or …. (actually the list of taboo groups  has lately grown alarmingly):  but Frenchmen, as such, are still fair game in some quarters.
As for DSK himself, I’ll not comment on his possible incartades d’alcôve:  not on the grounds that they are a private matter, but because it is up to the people of France  to decide what is private, and what they will tolerate in their politicians.
A legitimate object for comment, by contrast, is the astonishingly reckless ingérence in French and (owing to the importance of the IMF) European affairs, on the part of the New York:  police, politicians, prosecutors, public, and the press.   The well-known crassness of the American mediatized justice system, normally a tempest in a chamber-pot, here has acquired the dimensions of an international incident.  And the damage cannot be undone. For our own sakes, we need to get a grip on this.

There is little public pressure here, however, for such an airing-out.  Ever since Ike got away with his plots against Guatemala, Iran, and Cuba (well, the last one didn’t work out so well, but he managed to dump it into JFK’s lap  just in time), most Americans haven’t much cared how much damage they do abroad.   That many Americans still see Reagan wreathed in a golden glow, shows an unconscionable historical illiteracy.

[For the full thread of our commentary on this sorry affair, click here.
A variety of posts of possible interest to our transAtlantic cousins  may be viewed here.]

Update 27 August 2011:  remerci.

No comments:

Post a Comment