Jed Babbin & the Wimpy French

In the run-up to the war in Iraq in May 2003, President George W. Bush was dismayed to learn that France would not be supporting the American effort to oust Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Jed Babbin, a former deputy undersecretary of defense in the first Bush administration, was less concerned. "Going to war without France," he remarked, "is like going deer hunting without your accordion!"

[This remark is also attributed to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Gulf War commander General Norman Schwarzkopf, and former presidential candidate Ross Perot. Among the earliest volleys in the war of words came in February 2003, when Max Boot (of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York) scoffed that "no one in his right mind would look to France for anything more weighty than a good souffl? recipe."]

[Jay Leno once wryly observed that, while it was used by America after World War II, the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, has never been used by the cowardly French.]

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