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France wants back in on the empire game

Damon's picture

It's looking like Napolean Nicolas Sarkozy Bonaparte wants to get his nation back in on the empire game:

PARIS — President Nicolas Sarkozy opened France’s first military facilities in the Gulf on Tuesday, deepening the government’s alliance with the United Arab Emirates and highlighting its shifting foreign policy priorities.

Mr. Sarkozy attended a ceremony to open French naval, air and army facilities in Abu Dhabi. The bases are the first permanent French military installations to be built outside of French territory since the process of decolonization began more than half a century ago.

This was but one of the reasons why I was completely rooting for the candidacy of Ségolène Royal back during France's 2007 presidential election. Among other things, this base is also to play into the West's Persian preoccupation:

Mr Sarkozy has taken a tough line with Iran over its nuclear programme while committing France to defending Abu Dhabi and pressing its leaders to buy French nuclear energy and military equipment.

Sarkozy also praises the kind of capitalism that got us all into this mess:

In light of all these new projects, Sarkozy called the oil-rich UAE "a laboratory for globalization."

But, for whatever Sarkozy says, it always comes back down to oil (energy), in the end, an integral part of maintaining an empire.

Separately, Mr. Sarkozy also used the two-day trip to press for talks between oil producers and consumers to find “a satisfactory level” for crude to avoid the “erratic movements” of prices seen last year. Such talks could cover stocks, transport, technology, the organization of markets and speculation.

We are only so fortunate that Sarkozy is tempered in that he has to work within the institutional framework of France. It's always been my belief that if this guy had rose to power in the UK or the US, he'd have not acted much differently than Bush. Sometimes, we forget that there are a lot of other empires out there looking to clean-up from this Mideast Clusterfuck.

Versailles may be more than just a place in France, but lest were forget it's still very much a place in France, too.

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