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France and Germany discuss union
Guardian ^ | 11/13/03 | Jon Henley in Paris

Posted on 11/12/2003 7:09:20 PM PST by Pikamax

France and Germany discuss union

Jon Henley in Paris Thursday November 13, 2003 The Guardian

France and Germany are publicly discussing the possibility of a "Franco-German union" that would allow them to cooperate more closely in such areas as education, social affairs and the economy and even merge their defence and foreign policies, the French daily Le Monde said yesterday. The paper said that at this stage Europe's two most powerful nations, whose historic enmity has been transformed into the main driving force towards European integration, saw the project primarily as a tactic to ensure that countries such as Spain and Poland do not block the planned European constitution, paralysing the EU as it expands to 25 members next year.

But beyond short-term tactical considerations, some form of Franco-German union is seen by leaders particularly in Paris as a vital future step. The French foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin, said the project was "essential" and "the only historic gamble that we cannot lose".

The prime minister, Jean-Pierre Raffarin, who earlier this month hoisted a joint meeting of French and German regional authorities, also believes the two countries' relations have never been closer and that the time is ripe to go "pretty far", Le Monde said. After a shaky period during and immediately after the stormy Nice EU summit in December 2000, Paris and Berlin have worked conspicuously hard to get the so-called Franco-German motor firing again.

Their efforts culminated earlier this year when the French president, Jacques Chirac, and the German chancellor, Gerhard Schröder, signed a declaration promising more cooperation in areas ranging from crime to foreign policy.

They also said France and Germany would seek to "adopt common positions" in international bodies, including the UN security council, hold joint cabinet meetings, harmonise national laws wherever possible, and each appoint a senior official to oversee Franco-German cooperation.

Since then the two countries' relationship has been further cemented by the role they played in opposing the US-led invasion of Iraq, and more recently Mr Chirac represented Mr Schröder at an European council meeting in October.

But it is the realisation in both capitals that without the closest possible cooperation, France and Germany could well lose much of their influence in a larger EU that seems to be driving the project for a Franco-German union.

Le Monde quoted Mr Raffarin as saying: "If Europe with 25 members is a failure, what is left for France? The initiative of Franco-German rapprochement."

The prime minister reportedly continued, during a recent informal debate, to praise the "efficiency" of Paris's relations with Berlin and to say he could "well imagine that one day a German commissioner could represent France in Brussels."


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Germany; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: axisofweasals; cheeseeating; dairyproducts; eu; europeanunion; falloftheussr; france; germany; shorttermmemory; surrendermonkeys; vichyfrance2; vichyfranceii
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1 posted on 11/12/2003 7:09:20 PM PST by Pikamax
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To: Pikamax
The French obviously suffer from Stockholm Syndrome.
2 posted on 11/12/2003 7:10:20 PM PST by Timmy
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To: Pikamax
Their efforts culminated earlier this year when the French president, Jacques Chirac, and the German chancellor, Gerhard Schröder, signed a declaration promising more cooperation in areas ranging from crime to foreign policy.

Whereupon a criminal foreign policy was collectively pursued.

3 posted on 11/12/2003 7:15:05 PM PST by aposiopetic
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To: Timmy
"well imagine that one day a German commissioner could represent France in Brussels."

Ummmm, the French can't stand it when something has a name with a foreign pedigree. They insisted on coming up with a new made up french word for "e-mail". No, they can see a Frenchman representing Germany, but I will be shocked if we ever see a German representing France.
4 posted on 11/12/2003 7:15:07 PM PST by Arkinsaw
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To: Timmy; knighthawk; a_Turk; Turk2
"If Europe with 25 members is a failure, what is left for France? The initiative of Franco-German rapprochement."

I suppose it's a "failure" in French eyes since those pesky East Europeans won't kowtow.

5 posted on 11/12/2003 7:15:28 PM PST by Shermy (France chose Saddam.)
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To: Timmy
Isn't it called Finlandization? It is named for Finland's adopting of Soviet positions for fear of their large neighbor.
6 posted on 11/12/2003 7:15:52 PM PST by Ingtar (Understanding is a three-edged sword : your side, my side, and the truth in between ." -- Kosh)
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To: Timmy

7 posted on 11/12/2003 7:16:28 PM PST by Reeses
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Comment #8 Removed by Moderator

To: Pikamax
Funny...there never was much discussion in previous French/ German unions. =D
9 posted on 11/12/2003 7:19:36 PM PST by Skwidd (Fire Controlman First Class Extraordinaire)
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To: Pikamax; snippy_about_it; Matthew Paul

The last German/france union cost the US a lot of blood. I guess the french miss the old days of cooperating with the Germans on shipping Jews to the East.

10 posted on 11/12/2003 7:23:11 PM PST by SAMWolf (F U CN RD THS U CNT SPL WRTH A DM!)
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To: Shermy
The project was "essential" and "the only historic gamble that we cannot lose".

Seeing as how the gamble to go up against the USA failed miserably and both countries have found themselves serving drinks at the cocktail party of international importance.

So, together they can allow their mutual socialism to take them down into glorious flames. Can't wait!

11 posted on 11/12/2003 7:23:46 PM PST by freedumb2003 (Peace through Strength)
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To: Pikamax
Immediate reactions:

1. The EU must really be in tatters if this is what they are resorting to.
2. Are the French really that stupid?
3. These two deserve each other.
4. This has a certain 'Jerry Springer' sickness about it. Like 'Victims who marry their rapists'.

12 posted on 11/12/2003 7:24:18 PM PST by Monti Cello
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To: Monti Cello
I am speechless.
13 posted on 11/12/2003 7:28:14 PM PST by MEG33
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To: Pikamax
France and Germany discuss union

Now,......exactly where are they planning to build their new 'concentration camps'.....what types of 'gas'...?

/sarcsam

14 posted on 11/12/2003 7:28:31 PM PST by maestro
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To: Pikamax
The Feckless French strike again. Since Napoleons day the French have been a net liability. Nothing changes except Germany, after attacking France and being defeated ultimately in both cases by an Anglo-American force, now succeeds by the simple expedient of allowing the French to role over. Perfect. Now the French can drag themselves and the Germans into the cesspit.
15 posted on 11/12/2003 7:29:37 PM PST by Adrastus
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To: Timmy
The French obviously suffer from Stockholm Syndrome.

So do the Germans. They've been conquered twice by the French, and only returned the favor once.

16 posted on 11/12/2003 7:34:51 PM PST by NovemberCharlie
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To: Pikamax
LOL, the french think the germans are going to bale them out of their financial disaster, and the germans think the french are going to be their financial savior. Instead, the combined unemployment and stiff social costs are going to drag both of them deeper into the cesspool.
17 posted on 11/12/2003 7:37:07 PM PST by McGavin999
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To: Pikamax
Why exactly did we go over there and rescue these p*tz-heads twice anyway?
18 posted on 11/12/2003 7:37:25 PM PST by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: Pikamax
France and Germany are publicly discussing the possibility of a "Franco-German union"

*** ***** ******

Hitler wins! Why did we even bother?
19 posted on 11/12/2003 7:38:49 PM PST by longtermmemmory
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To: NovemberCharlie
The French obviously suffer from Stockholm Syndrome.

So do the Germans. They've been conquered twice by the French, and only returned the favor once.

Remember,....it was both,...the French and the Germans that 'produced',....Stalin and Hitler,.......Ah,...watching 'NATZO'.

:-(

20 posted on 11/12/2003 7:39:39 PM PST by maestro
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