France ‘humiliated’ by AUKUS says former US ambassador
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President Macron has been left angry following the deal which will see nuclear submarines built in Australia.
The French, who had their own Franco-Australian deal in place, will now reportedly lose out on a contract worth in excess of $50bn, leaving the French seething.
Macron was quick to condemn the deal by recalling his Ambassadors to the United States and Australia back to Paris, a move that has significant diplomatic meaning.
Furthermore, the French President ordered the cancellation of a gala commemorating the 240th anniversary of the Battle of the Capes, once again a sign of bitter ties between Paris and Washington.
Mr Beaune, France’s Secretary of State for European Affairs, has been described as Macron’s “attack puppy” by Brexit Facts4EU.org.
He told France 24: “Our British friends explained to us they were leaving the EU to create Global Britain. We can see that this is a return into the American lap and form of accepted vassalisation [sic]…. The UK is clearly trying to find its feet, perhaps there was a lack of thought about the strategic future. Today they are hiding in the American fold.”
Foreign Minister Jean-Eves Le Drian reportedly called the deal a ‘stab in the back’, comparing the actions taken by the USA to the previous administration.
“This brutal, unilateral and unpredictable decision reminds me a lot of what Mr Trump used to do” started an angry and furious Mr Le Drian.
The minister went on to claim: “The cancellation of the Attack class submarine program binding Australia and France since 2016, and the announcement of a new partnership with the United States… constitute unacceptable behaviour between allies and partners, whose consequences directly affect the vision we have of our alliances, of our partnerships and the importance of the Indo-Pacific for Europe”.
France has not involved Britain too heavily in the diplomatic spat, with the French ambassador to London still in office, and yet to be recalled for consultations.
Many officials in France are labelling the British as ‘junior partner’ in the deal, speculating the fact that the technology and funding for the project will be coming from Washington, and not London.
The verbal attack on Britain became more official following a statement made by a junior minister in the Macron government.
The rhetoric being delivered by the French is perceived as another jab at Brexit-Britain, who by aligning with the USA and Australia in the deal have shown the potential it has as a global brand.
However, it is not just within Europe that the deal is seen as a threat.
China also reacted with strong opposition.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry was also vocal about the deal.
Spokesperson Hua Chunying claimed: “The nuclear submarine cooperation between the US, the UK and Australia has seriously undermined regional peace and stability, intensified the arms race and undermined international non-proliferation efforts.
“The export of highly sensitive nuclear submarine technology to Australia by the US and the UK proves once again that they are using nuclear exports as a tool for geopolitical game and adopting double standards. This is extremely irresponsible.
“Relevant countries should abandon the outdated Cold War zero-sum mentality and narrow-minded geopolitical perception, respect the will of the people of regional countries and do more to contribute to regional peace, stability and development. Otherwise, they will only end up shooting themselves in the foot.”
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For France and the wider EU family, the frustration and reality of the bloc are starting to hit home harder than ever.
In spite of efforts by Brussels, led by French interests, to build a European Army, with full control of defence operations, the fact Britain has pulled out suggests a stronger alternative.
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