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The Gallic Gall of the French over Gaza

By Michael Freund
6/2/2010, 12:00 AM


it was precisely 25 years ago next month that French intelligence agents, acting upon the orders of then-President Francois Mitterand, covertly attacked and blew up a Greenpeace vessel in New Zealand
Among these leading the charge to denounce Israel in unsparing terms over the Gaza flotilla incident have been the pusillanimous paragons of piety in Paris.

On Monday, without even bothering to check the facts, French President Nicolas Sarkozy reflexively condemned Israel and accused it of a "disproportionate use of force".

Meanwhile, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said he was "deeply shocked" by the Israeli raid on the Gaza-bound flotilla and insisted that "nothing can justify the use of such violence".

As always, it is hard to take Paris' moral posturing all too seriously, given their track record of cozying up to dictators and selling arms and ammunition to just about everyone except the Devil himself (though I'm sure they tried leaving messages for him.....).

But what is particularly galling about this Gallic gumption is the sheer hypocrisy that it represents.

After all, it was precisely 25 years ago next month that French intelligence agents, acting upon the orders of then-President Francois Mitterand, covertly attacked and blew up a Greenpeace vessel in New Zealand to prevent the environmental activists from disrupting a French nuclear test.

The ship, known as the Rainbow Warrior, was docked in port of Auckland, New Zealand's capital, and as a result of the blast, a photographer on board was killed.

So just exactly who do the French think they are to be lecturing Israel?