As long as complaints centered on the fact that war supporters had gotten it wrong 4 years ago were confined to the blogosphere, I ignored them. But now Chirac is engaging in the same stale rhetoric that makes me go read Thomas Friedman in frustration.
As France had foreseen and feared, the war in Iraq has sparked upheavals that have yet to show their full effects… This adventure has worsened the divisions among communities and threatened the very integrity of Iraq. It has undermined the stability of the entire region, where every country now fears for its security and its independence. It has offered terrorism a new field for expansion.
The priority, more than ever, is to restore full sovereignty to the Iraqi people.
The last sentence makes Chirac’s statement more palatable – “We should withdraw now” is a constructive idea – but the rest is pure crap. France didn’t foresee anything. Most of the French people had a rough idea the war would be a bad idea. But Chirac wasn’t about the only right-wing leader in Europe to oppose the war because of his foresight, but because of a pathological anti-Anglophone hatred.
And even then, Chirac’s statement was a lot better than the usual complaints about why the US media still tilts toward people who supported the war.
It’s not that the media has any inherent bias; it’s that when one side gives a multitude of detailed ideas that won’t work, and the other alternates between sloganeering “Bush lied; people died” and saying “Withdraw now,” the media will tilt toward the former. The sooner activists understand that, the sooner they’ll be able to get the media to adopt the slant they want it to adopt.