Patterico's Pontifications


France Declares War on Al Qaeda in North Africa

Filed under: International,Terrorism — DRJ @ 9:29 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

France has declared war on Al Qaeda in North Africa following the murder of a French hostage:

“We are at war with al-Qaida,” Prime Minister Francois Fillon said Tuesday, a day after President Nicolas Sarkozy announced the death of 78-year-old hostage Michel Germaneau.
Fillon refused to say how France would act. “But we will,” he said in an interview with Europe 1 radio.”

Call me crazy but I believe him.

MORE: The AP reports Germaneau was murdered in retaliation for a failed rescue attempt.


36 Responses to “France Declares War on Al Qaeda in North Africa”

  1. Declaring war is one thing, but who is France going to get to do the fighting for them?

    daleyrocks (940075)

  2. DRJ – Can we start a pool on the number of Car-B-Cues in Paris as a result of those pronouncements? I hear Renault roasted chicken can be quite tasty.

    daleyrocks (940075)

  3. I added “More” in a new last paragraph. It sounds like France is already fighting, but you’re probably right about the burning cars.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

  4. I wonder if victory is an option with Sarkozy and Fillon. Sure sounds like it, unlike with Obama.

    John Hitchcock (9e8ad9)

  5. France has suffered 7 million war casualties in the last 9 decades or so, I would hazard a guess that they fought just as hard as anyone else

    EricPWJohnson (3efc69)

  6. Cheese eating surrender monkeys. That is all.

    Gazzer (800a42)

  7. I enjoy making fun of the French as much as the next guy, but they have been positively brutal when they want to be. It’s always amused me how they can be hypocritical in that way, but the French are cynical in diplomacy.

    I wish them tremendous success with this noble effort. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a domestic response. Europe is in such a bad way lately.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  8. The generation that fought in WW2, Dien Bien Phu, and Algeria, is gone from the stage. They have been dealing with their former colony, for the better part of the last two decades

    ian cormac (5b70b3)

  9. 1) It was France that staged the commando operation that freed a cruise ship from the Somali pirates, wasn’t it?

    2) Weren’t these countries once part of France’s colonial empire? I have read that France keeps a rather close eye on its former African colonies, although it doesn’t usually openly interfere with them.

    kishnevi (6c49d9)

  10. although it doesn’t usually openly interfere with them.

    Comment by kishnevi

    Usually is a subjective term. Just one example.

    Though, I admit, this isn’t the norm.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  11. ‘The United States said it would help the French “in any way that we can” to bring those who killed Germaneau to justice’

    To justice? This is war, not a courtroom. We need to KILL Al Qaida terrorists and utterly destroy Al Qaida as an organization, not bring them to justice.


    Dave Surls (92a9ce)

  12. French declare a war on terror?

    They could start at home!

    RTF (08fcc8)

  13. Welcome to the party pal.

    firefirefire (914e0c)

  14. We need to KILL Al Qaida terrorists and utterly destroy Al Qaida as an organization, not bring them to justice.

    In fairness, I have always read “bring the terrorists to justice” as a euphemism for killing them. GW Bush used that term, and I had no doubt that he wasn’t referring to Mirandizing them. Sure, with this new crew you never can be quite certain, but I would like to think they are talking about bringing the terrorists to the Highest of the High Court, i.e. the one with St. Peter as the bailiff.

    JVW (a52530)

  15. I’d like for our leaders to use words like “crush into dust”, “utterly annihilate”, “completely slaughter” and “make extinct” when they discuss their plans for Al Qaida.

    Euphemisms tend to get muddled in the practical.

    When the French aren’t busy preemptively surrendering, their record of fighting is quite good. Alas, I fear their home troubles will eclipse their fight overseas. They’ve been allowing the breeding of extremists in their Muslim ghettos.

    Vivian Louise (c7cad6)

  16. The French do have some of the world’s elite commando units, and can inflict much damage where they have the political will to do so. It seems they may now. But what is this weaselly wording of Crowley, “no religion sanctions . . .”? We are not dealing with a “religion” at all here, but rather a barbaric pagan death cult bent on world domination.

    Adjoran (ec6a4b)

  17. Sarkozy was a voice for clarity at the UN, lst year, while the President dewlled on a nuclear free world (Iran not included)and the perfidy of Israeli
    settlements. This is not the corrupt regime of Chirac, tied to Total, like BP on steroids, in Iraq,
    Sudean, et al

    ian cormac (5b70b3)

  18. AQ not know what
    heet zem when EU cut off
    zer carbon credeets

    ColonelHaiku (ac3c3c)

  19. Yeah, I’m impressed, because we all know how good the French are at fighting wars.

    JEA (1eb0e1)

  20. ^please look up the years of Napolean’s reign and then get back to us – idiot.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  21. Dmac – One of France’s most recent military successes was having its troops serve as peacekeepers in Lebanon and allowing Hezbollah to rearm right under their noses. FRATERNITE, LIBERTE, EGALITE.

    daleyrocks (940075)

  22. Dmac, well it did take an italian to lead them to military victory.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  23. Or, if the Corsican Orgre was not available, it took a woman to lead them on.

    Dmac, don’t let the brotherly trash talk fool you. Most Americans are going to be happy to have the ancestors of du Marquis de La Fayette at our side.
    Those Americans on the left who are helping Al Queda? Not so much.

    tyree (63c76f)

  24. Dmac – One of France’s most recent military successes was having its troops serve as peacekeepers in Lebanon and allowing Hezbollah to rearm right under their noses. FRATERNITE, LIBERTE, EGALITE.

    No shit – but my larger point is those who make such wide – ranging claims of military incompetence are wholly ignorant of history. Until WWI, France was considered to be a military power, and had the past history to back it up – one of the primary reasons for Napolean’s astonishing success was the fact that France relied mostly on volunteer soldiers, a radical departure from past practices. After the carnage of WWI, France (like most of Europe) chose to hide their heads in their hands when the specter of Hitler rose up – they could have stopped him in less than one day’s worth of fighting if they had marched in when he occupied the Sudentenland, and Hitler had actually expected that outcome. Then we have the latter socialistic inanity along with Gallic douchery in the form of DeGaulle and the Paris student uprising, culminating with Mitterand (denying their airspace to NATO during a critical military operation), and here we are.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  25. BTW, I often wonder how the world would have looked today if Napolean’s conquests had lasted more than a few decades – much better food almost everywhere, I would imagine.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  26. wonder how world look
    after nine Napoleon
    brandies and got sick

    ColonelHaiku (ac3c3c)

  27. “Until WWI, France was considered to be a military power”

    Dmac – France is still a legend in its own mind and deserves ridicule for leaders such as Mitterand and Chirac as you point out. Less so for Sarkozy. I have many French friends and enjoy bashing their country with abandon, just as I have enjoyed visiting it over the years. The French seem less arrogant to me today than they were 30 years ago and deservedly so.

    daleyrocks (940075)

  28. There was a whole generation that was wiped out during WW 1, plus it was a socialist government
    and the military still bore the grudge of being proved wrong about Dreyfus. Many of those became
    the Cagoule and later the Vichy militia

    ian cormac (e46147)

  29. ian – Then you had the mess in Indochina and the protracted struggles in Algeria. What’s a country to do?

    daleyrocks (940075)

  30. Well they took 17 years to pacify Algeria, the first time, De Tocqueville who chroniclced the
    experience, about 8 years in, almost as long as we’ve been in Afghanistan, pronounced it hopeless

    ian cormac (e46147)

  31. David Galula was a French Officer in Algeria (and other places) whose two books on counter-insurgency warfare are the templates for the Army Field Manual written by David Patraeus on the subject.
    The French can fight such a war, if they have the political will, which is the sticking point for all such struggles.

    AD - RtR/OS! (f0ce5a)

  32. The french always can have the foreign legion kill whomever they desire dead. Complaints can be met with a shrug – ” eh, they (the legion) aren’t French, are they?”

    Californio (757c2c)

  33. That’s true, Californio. Whether in Hacienda Camaron, Dien Bien Phu, or Algeria, it was the French Foreign Legion that fought. (However, it is “open” to French citizens who may comprise about one fourth of it.)

    nk (db4a41)

  34. Ditto, and French as opposed to American counterinsurgency techniques were in use in South America and even South Africa, until the late 80s,
    they are not a soft touch when they put their minds
    to it

    ian cormac (e46147)

  35. That’s an understatement – the kind of “methods” they used on alleged terrorists in Algeria make our techniques look positively childish in comparison. Hooking up genitalia to battery cables, suspending them by their fingernails – Marquis du Sade would have been quite proud.

    Dmac (d61c0d)

  36. Well it was a combination Dmac, Auseresse, did practice those type of tactics, but Galula was Petraeus’s model for a reason

    ian cormac (e46147)

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