Sarkozy Needs a Lesson in European History

By Poirier, Agnes | New Statesman (1996), August 25, 2008 | Go to article overview

Sarkozy Needs a Lesson in European History


Poirier, Agnes, New Statesman (1996)


Wherever the action is, you can count on Nicolas Sarkozy getting there first: swiftness is his political raison d'etre. Hence it was no surprise to hear that just 36 hours after Georgia began military operations in South Ossetia on 8 August, the French foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner, was on a plane to the Georgian capital, Tbilisi. No surprise, either, to see Sarkozy arriving in Moscow on day four of what had become a Russo-Georgian war, to urge the Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, to agree to a ceasefire. He could have let Jose Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, broker the peace agreement. But the French president, who doesn't believe in delegating power and who loves nothing better than inflated prerogatives, would go to Moscow as the face of Europe, and as Super President.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

As the left Paris, he had said he would convince the Russians to sign the six points of the EU peace proposal "immediately". And he did. Although, with Russian troops still dithering about actually withdrawing from Georgia as I write, many observers have started questioning the "ambiguities" of the French-drafted agreement, which could leave room for a semi-permanent Russian presence inside Georgia's borders. Sarkozy's army of advisers should warn him that swiftness without reflection can be the death of diplomacy.

But why was Sarkozy so eager to be seen flexing his statesman's muscles? Because, beyond the immediate political gains of his actions, there is something about Russia and Vladimir Putin that profoundly titillates him, and if he knew his French history he would know that such a feeling goes back hundreds of years.

Catherine the Great was, of course, an admirer of the French Enlightenment-indeed, of all things French. A little later, her grandson Tsar Alexander I and Napoleon paved the way for Franco-Russian relations. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Sarkozy Needs a Lesson in European History
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.