Two recent stories coming out of Europe do not bode well for Senator Kerry's presidential aspirations.
The first, via Drudge
, is a Financial Times report in the of statements by French and German officials that their respective countries will not send troops
to Iraq even if Kerry is somehow elected. The second, via Powerline
, is an International Herald Tribune
story in which it is reported that France will not attend an international conference on Iraq unless the agenda includes discussion of a US withdrawal and the "insurgents" are invited to attend.
From Kerry's point of view, of the French and German statements reported by the FT, the French was worse. Not because it said anything different, but because it came from the Foreign Minister.
Michel Barnier, the French foreign minister, said last week that France, which has tense relations with interim prime minister Iyad Allawi, had no plans to send troops "either now or later".
The German statement is from Gert Weisskirchen, who is described as a "member of parliament and foreign policy expert for Germany's ruling Social Democratic Party" and is quoted as follows:
"I cannot imagine that there will be any change in our decision not to send troops, whoever becomes president. That said, Mr Kerry seems genuinely committed to multilateralism and as president he would find it easier than Mr Bush to secure the German government's backing in other matters."
Other matters. Other matters don't figure in this election. Kerry's proposed solution for Iraq is to get France and Germany involved militarily to relieve our forces. And the French Foreign Minister and a "foreign policy expert" for Germany's ruling party just said that ain't gonna happen.
The IHT story may well be the more damning of the two reports, however. Kerry has not called for negotiations with the "insurgents", but the French just did. Can you imagine France sending troops to Iraq while simultaneously calling for negotiations concerning US withdrawal? I can't. And given that Kerry has evoked Vietnam in his campaign, can there be a worse Vietnam allusion than to the Paris "peace" negotiations that led to the unilateral US withdrawal from Vietnam and cleared the way for North Vietnam to conquer its now southern half? Where shall the negotiations begin? Shall we discuss the shape of the table? Shall we discuss how many representatives Zarqawi gets to send and whether he should defer any additional beheadings while the conference is under way?
Europe just finished Kerry. He is toast.
UPDATE: It seems that foolish minds think alike. Foolsblog
agrees with me (or I with him, since he posted last night).