Stratfor comments on the US and France

The French suggested to the United States that it give the new Iraqi government veto power over major American operations in and from Iraq. The United States, via President George W. Bush, who was in France memorializing U.S. troops who died liberating France, declined the French suggestion.

…regardless of events during the past year, France and the United States cannot resist tussling. French President Jacques Chirac knew perfectly well that the United States was not going to give the Iraqi government veto power over U.S. forces. The French raised the idea only to get the inevitable U.S. rejection. The thing to remember here is that anti-Americanism plays well in France, and anti-French feeling plays well in the United States. Although John Kerry speaks of being more open to allies, if Bush can make France the whipping boy and make Kerry into a Francophile, Bush picks up votes, just as Chirac does when he baits Bush. Chirac and Bush do need each other.

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