September 22, 2003

Weasel Watch

John Cullinan, writing at NRO, explains how Chirac and France, while risking nothing in Iraq, are trying to use the U.N. and the current U.S. draft resolution to weasel their way into increased influence there:

France, however, has long-regarded Iraq solely as a means to counter U.S. influence and to advance its own pretensions of grandeur. While repeatedly emphasizing that France will in no event commit its own troops or funds to Iraq, Chirac has sought at every turn to exercise control over Iraq's political future by using the U.N. as a willing proxy. For all his bluster, Chirac is shrewd enough to realize that French vanity alone is not enough to counterbalance 140,000 U.S. troops on the ground. But he is patient enough to see the new draft resolution as an opening wedge, a chance to create introduce some ambiguity into Iraq's governing arrangements that the U.N. bureaucracy can exploit. The more ambiguity, the greater the temptation for Iraqi factions to play one set of foreigners off against another; and the more friction and chaos, the better the chance for Iraq to implode and — more important — the U.S. to fail.
Posted by dan at September 22, 2003 1:54 PM