Jewish World Review March 20, 2003 / 16 Adar II, 5763

Dan Abrams

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Did I misunderstand the French?


http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | I thought I understood their position until now. I thought they were saying, "Yes, we all know Saddam has at least some weapons of mass destruction. Yes, he's used them in the past, but we think the inspections are working, Saddam is disarming, and therefore, war is completely inappropriate." But now I'm not so sure.

Now, the French ambassador to the United States says if Saddam uses chemical or biological weapons against U.S. troops, it would "Change completely the perception and situation for us."

Why? Do they now doubt that Saddam actually has the weapons or that he would use them? Do they now doubt the 1999 U.N. Special Commission report that said Saddam has not accounted for thousands of gallons of anthrax, thousands of chemical warfare weapons, hundred of tons of material to produce VX nerve agents, thousands of shells for use in biological warfare. Do they now doubt that the U.N. resolution, 1441, put the burden on Saddam to prove they were destroyed? And since Saddam has used them against his own people in the past, why wouldn't he use them again?

I think most everyone hopes he doesn't, but still expects him to try, everyone it seems except the French. A spokesman in the foreign minister's Paris office downplayed the comments telling CNN it was a response to a -"strictly hypothetical question", as if it's such a long shot.

Do they really have their heads so deep in the sand or are they just trying to find a position that would allow them to join in reshaping a post-war Iraq? Assuming the French mean what they say, I'm not sure I understand exactly what that is.

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JWR contributor Dan Abrams anchors “The Abrams Report,” Monday through Friday from 6-7 p.m. ET on MSNBC TV. He also covers legal stories for “NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw,” “Today” and “Dateline NBC.” To visit his website, click here. Comment by clicking here.

Up

03/18/03: No longer shielded from reality
03/17/03: Franco-phobic nonsense sweeping the nation
03/14/03: An exception to my "be extra tough on terrorists" rule
03/13/03: Whiner Assad still doesn't get it
03/11/03: What a new deadline for Iraq should really mean
03/10/03: The dishonest arguments against war with Iraq
03/07/03: On Iraq, the administration seems undeterred. It seems, there is no other way out
03/05/03: The so-called human shields in Iraq, now coming back from Fantasyland
03/04/03: Michigan backing off of mandatory minimum sentences for certain drug crimes
03/03/03: Why military tribunals could be the best optione of defining them as military
02/28/03: Is prez signaling a return to the American Bar Association ratings for prospective judicial candidates?
02/26/03: And now the "don't-blame-me" attitude is extending to mass deaths
02/10/03: Avoid politicizing the shuttle disaster
01/29/03: A litany of violations? That Saddam has not disarmed is already a given
01/23/03: Why the feds should not give up on the prosecution of alleged 20th hijacker in a federal court
01/22/03: What was Powell thinking?
01/21/03: Human rights groups still don't get it when it comes to the new war on terror
01/16/03: Yet another reason why we shouldn't trust the Saudis
01/13/03: Why the administration should share intelligence with U.N. inspectors
01/10/03: From a special punishment to a garden variety one
01/08/03: Should victims of a terror attack sue the city?
01/06/03: The "Jackpot Jury" syndrome continues
12/30/02: It's the holidays, let me order my wine!
12/20/02: The judge who dropped the ball in the battle over who owns Barry Bonds' 73rd home run ball, valued at nearly $2 million
12/19/02: Requiring Pakistani and Saudi male visitors to register with the INS
12/18/02: Why many seem to misunderstand Iraq's international obligations
12/17/02: Shouldn't there be a standard for what would trigger a war with Iraq?
12/13/02: Judge Rose by what he did on the field
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12/11/02: Why our government refuses to fully cooperate in the prosecution of a possible 9/11 conspirator
12/10/02: Hezbollah, not a terrorist organization, says Canada
12/09/02: The world's cynical view of America
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11/27/02: Why men should be able to sue women who lie about who's the daddy
11/26/02: Training lawyers to be touchy-feely
11/25/02: The story of a real American hero
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11/15/02: A close reading of Iraq's letter of acceptance makes it clear that Saddam will almost certainly refuse to live up to its terms
11/14/02: Al Jazeera: A state-sponsored mouth-piece
11/13/02: Should Moussaoui be sent to a military tribunal?
11/12/02: Should human rights activists complain about the detainees' treatment?

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