Jewish World Review Feb. 19, 2003 / 17 Adar I, 5763
Jacques Chirac last night offered "liberté de silence" (freedom of silence) to the 13 nations which are candidates for European Union (EU) membership.
"One of the great things about the European Union is that you'll never have to speak your mind," said the French President. "Just listen to what France says, and agree. That's why we call it a Union. We're all together."
Chirac expressed concern that the candidate-nations may not realize they have this freedom because they have publicly supported the position of the United States with regard to Iraqi disarmament.
"In our orientation class," said M. Chirac, "These nations will learn that we call this organization L'Union européenne, or L'UE...never EU, which of course means Etats-Unis (United States)."
He conceded that it sometimes takes a while for new member nations to learn their proper places, and how to enjoy the freedom of silence, "but one would think some of these Eastern European nations would be good at it."
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