Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Book Review: The French Betrayal of America

By Matt Hurley from the TIB Network:

The French Betrayal of America by Kenneth Timmerman was a fascinating read. As I have indicated elsewhere on WMD, Timmerman is one of my favorite investigative journalists. He finds stories that nobody else will touch and gets to the truth.

My review of the book is quite favorable, naturally, and is divided into two parts: “general observations” and “Iraq observations.” I learned a great deal about Franco-American relations and even more about Franco-Iraqi relations.


French politics is ripe with corruption. Always has been, always will be. Therefore, the French have the tendency to project themselves onto other governments. (This is typical of most individual liberals, but I don’t recall that I’ve seen such strong evidence of it in a nation-state.)

France doesn’t seem to want to commit to any side of most international situations. While some might play this as French “neutrality” I get the impression that this has more to do with French business opportunities than anything else. If the French get too cozy with the United States and her allies, they lose business; and vice versa.

France has extensive defense industry investments throughout the Middle East. Their policies are reflective of the economic and political impact, and not necessarily taking consideration for long term relations with any particular nation. Typically, all that is needed is a kickback. Iraq, Iran, Syria, Israel/Palestine...you can expect France to take the opposite view of the USA every time.

French President Jacque Chirac engages in political expediency and courtly intrigue. Supporting America after 9/11 while insuring that France would not cooperate in the Moussaoui investigation. Making statements that America would not get French "permission" for a war without consulting them on targets, etc. The French election was seven months away and Chirac used all of this politically. (Sound familiar? Jean “Waffles” Kerry perhaps?)

What isn’t generally known is that America has been helping the France with their nuclear program. America gave France some of our most kept secrets and technology and that assistance continues even today.

After the Gulf War (One), France turned to economic espionage against the United States and other "allied" countries. Timmerman gives us all the details needed to piece this together.

France does not have American interests in mind when they engage in trading military hardware, including the aforementioned nuclear technology.


At one point, two-thirds to three-quarters of the French defense industry was devoted to Iraqi orders. If you don’t think that had any play in France’s actions as Gulf War II heated up, you weren’t paying attention in the preceding paragraphs.

France was heavily invested in Saddam Hussein. France built Iraq's nuclear plant (called Osirik). The relationship between the two countries and their leaders was so strong that the French press dubbed the plant "O'Chirac."

Two French companies were given oil rights to two Iraqi oil fields in exchange for work to eliminate the post-war embargo. One contract gave the French company 75% of the field's entire production (typically, the foreign investor got 50%); the same contract excluded an otherwise normal advance payment by the foreign company against future oil revenue (a startup/development investment repaid later in product) suggesting that this fee was levied by other methods. The red flag is that the entire contract was dependent on lifting UN sanctions against Iraq.

Read that last paragraph again. It is important.

Question: Why would the French support a war that would topple the regime giving France access to one of the largest supplies of oil on the planet?

Answer: They wouldn’t. And didn’t. And this is exactly why.


The French Betrayal of America is something of a dry read. You really have to want to understand why France is behaving like this in order to make it through the entire book. But it IS worth it. I highly recommend this book to anybody who has to deal with French-loving liberals.