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Thursday, October 13, 2005

Knowing a few things about an insurgency

"I don't think it's possible to have any progress in democracy with foreign troops on your territory. I think this is the French experience."

Francois Descoueyte, French Ambassador in Australia, on Iraq.


Blogger Shabadoo said...

Yawn...let's just ask the Japanese, the Germans, the British, etc, how they've coped with democracy for all these decades with evil nasty American troops on their soil.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 10:02:00 am  
Blogger Mike Hunt said...

The French didn't seem to mind when American and British troops landed at Normandy.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 10:45:00 am  
Blogger Pete's Blog said...

The last 2 posts are largely irrelevant because troops are no longer occupying the European or Japanese soil mentioned.

In the case of Europe there was a deep history of democracy.

Not so in Iraq, the place the frog Ambassador is referring to.

Democracy can only occur after a dominating military force (applying martial law) has left.

The yanks don't care about this opinion, of course, only about American public opinion.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 11:18:00 am  
Blogger Savvas Tzionis said...

The Japanese and German people submitted because they had no qualms about their status as villains in WWII.

The Iraqi's are probably peeved that they couldn't get rid of Saddam themselves, and to save face, need to take out the current occupier.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 12:16:00 pm  
Blogger Pete's Blog said...


These's some truth to what you say.

That it takes "infidel" Americans to boot out Saddam hurts Iraqi national pride.

However, its the minority Sunnis, who benefitted so greatly under Saddam, who are fighting the coalition the hardest. The Sunnis are also doing most of the bombing to destabilise any chance of Shia dominated "democracy".

Thursday, October 13, 2005 12:57:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Gigolo Pete, what are you talking about? England had a long tradition of democracy, but it was pretty lacking in much of the rest of Continental Europe. And Japan wrenched itself from a fuedal emperor cult to a modern parliamentary democracy in a very short period of time...

Thursday, October 13, 2005 1:20:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

I'm inclined to disagree with you shab, my understanding is that Japan started its democratisation as early as 1895 (just off the top of my head). The military's control of the Diet in the 30s and 40s was a break from the process.

But let's not forget Turkey, during the Cold War it managed to develop into a democracy with the evil nasty American troops on their soil.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 9:39:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Anthony, while speaking of Turkish democracy let's not ignore the treatment of Turkey's Kurds. What did the US say about that issue?

Friday, October 14, 2005 5:55:00 pm  
Blogger Pete's Blog said...

Not very much. Because the US (and Russia etc) wants to keep Turkey stable. Turkey's genocidale "solutions" against the Kurds and during WW1 the Armenians therefore go unpunished.

A bitter law of history is that a dictatorship's treatment of minorities is usually tolerated until its politically expedient to make a noise.

Hence Russia's murder of millions of its Muslim minorities in WW2 (forced evacuation to Siberia - then death) has gone largely unsung.

Saturday, October 15, 2005 1:03:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

Point taken, Dirt. During the Cold War the US would have said very little on the matter. Although, interestingly, I think it may have come up a few times in the House of Lords.

What I was getting at is that the assertion that it's [not] possible to have any progress [to] democracy with foreign troops on your territory, isn't particularly well founded.

During France’s Indochina War, the Vietmihn developed a democratic constitution based on that of the United States- in an effort to win US support for independence following the end of its conflict against France.

This was, of course, with French troops on Vietnamese soil- Francois Descoueyte must have forgotten this development when he made his statement. Of course, he probably wants to forget it- the embarrassment of 1954 must still haunt the French.

Had the US supported the Vietmihn and simply had the (limited number of) communists within the movement ousted, the what if’s are amazing...

Saturday, October 15, 2005 5:37:00 pm  

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