Chirac backs down
It seems that British Prime Minister Tony Blair has tempered the extremist French President Jacques Chirac. From a joint press conference:
Chirac also played down earlier comments that he was "not sure" the Iraq war had made the world a safer place.So while Chirac was earlier mocking the Iraq war and U.S. Secretary of State Donald Rumsfeld, he is now suddenly more conciliatory. It makes one think that the British Prime Minister might have taken the Frenchman to the woodshed.
The two governments "don't necessarily agree" on the war, he conceded. "We have a different analysis, we address things differently."
But the president added that the governments "should not look back over our shoulders and analyse [sic] the past".
A stable and democratic Iraq was now a "common objective".
Remember, the two men have had strongly differing views regarding Europe's relations with the United States. Chirac sees Europe as an opposition to what his government terms U.S. "hyperpuissance" (hyperpower), while Blair sees Europe accomplishing the most as a partner of the United States.
This is a question of history: the right side versus the wrong side.
Based on my utterly non-existent knowledge of British/French diplomacy, I would speculate Jackie "The Rat" Chirac's change in attitude was because Tony slipped him a couple of hundred nontaxable euros. (Does J.C. look like a head waiter to you too, or is it just me?)
After all, with Saddam in jail, Jackie's gotta be thinking about where his next bribe is coming from.