Jump to content

Can someone explain the hate/love affair of USA and France ?


Stranded Shipscook

Recommended Posts

udonthani

the United States has no business disliking either France or Russia for that matter. After all they sold them Louisiana (not modern Louisiana) and Alaska for peanuts.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 186
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • Stranded Shipscook

    33

  • sperry

    15

  • EAGLE

    14

  • Headshot

    10

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

What about the love hate relationship with France and the rest of the world.

Whilst the evidence given so far provides evidence of the symptoms I don't think it identifies the underlying illness. I think it goes right back to the cultural and political divide between the UK an

yes i am french then old enough too understand it,yes sure the old generation have a disliked of any foreigners ,but the new generation travel then have another point of view. has the American some r

Posted Images

udonthani

It does apply to the germans and Brits as well...I would say that the Brits dislike the germans more than what they dislike the frogs.

 

this is just not true. Most British people are temperamentally much more similar to Germans than they are the French and tend to get on with them on a personal level much better.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
Stranded Shipscook

Whilst the evidence given so far provides evidence of the symptoms I don't think it identifies the underlying illness. I think it goes right back to the cultural and political divide between the UK and France, which has existed for many centuries. France has long thought of itself, and it's language, as culturally superior to everyone else and this continues to this day. It fought this battle with the UK, up to the time of Empire, but since the USA assumed the role of the leader of the English speaking world, it has transferred the battle to them.

France simply does not accept that the USA leads them. They see themselves as being completely independent, certainly equal, and in many ways superior, to anything found in the USA. They take a separate line on defence and on politics.

Anyone who has had dealings with the French, as I have, will know that they can be utterly charming on a personal level but scratch the surface and and they will bleed France every time. Chauvonism is a French word for a very good reason.

 

The result of all this is that there are constant differencies with the French, who will dig their heels in over the silliest things if it hurts their sensitivities. The situation developed during WW2 when the French truly thought the Allies had a duty to save "La Belle France" because it represented everything that was of true value in the western world. It should not therefore be a surprise that there is such a big antipathy, especially as they are such a social democracy when compared to the USA.

That is a good explanation, the old UK/France conflict being carried over to the US, often also due to the common language and therefore resulting in some biased opinions.

So correctly that could be set right when media/education would propagate France as a Friend. (and vice versa)

Note (Chauvinism):

Chauvinism, in its original and primary meaning, is an exaggerated, bellicose patriotism and a belief in national superiority and glory.[1] It is an eponym of a possibly fictional French soldier Nicolas Chauvin who was credited with many superhuman feats in the Napoleonic wars.

By extension it has come to include an extreme and unreasoning partisanship on behalf of any group to which one belongs, especially when the partisanship includes malice and hatred towards rival groups.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Admin (Retired)
broden

i think it's cause of all the oui oui

 

sg0228fkf.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

There is only one French in the forum, so i asked the Americans. And Yes, i want it explained, because i don't see any reasons.

I gave you a couple & I am not a Yank. Do you agree or not with those 2 examples?

Link to post
Share on other sites
Stranded Shipscook

I gave you a couple & I am not a Yank. Do you agree or not with those 2 examples?

as i mentioned and honored in my post , as it appears the reasons are based upon old military "happenings", but then again that would mean that the USA must hate the UK and Germany even more.

 

So i can not agree really, because that would put the Americans down.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Whilst the evidence given so far provides evidence of the symptoms I don't think it identifies the underlying illness. I think it goes right back to the cultural and political divide between the UK and France, which has existed for many centuries. France has long thought of itself, and it's language, as culturally superior to everyone else and this continues to this day. It fought this battle with the UK, up to the time of Empire, but since the USA assumed the role of the leader of the English speaking world, it has transferred the battle to them.

France simply does not accept that the USA leads them. They see themselves as being completely independent, certainly equal, and in many ways superior, to anything found in the USA. They take a separate line on defence and on politics.

Anyone who has had dealings with the French, as I have, will know that they can be utterly charming on a personal level but scratch the surface and and they will bleed France every time. Chauvonism is a French word for a very good reason.

 

The result of all this is that there are constant differencies with the French, who will dig their heels in over the silliest things if it hurts their sensitivities. The situation developed during WW2 when the French truly thought the Allies had a duty to save "La Belle France" because it represented everything that was of true value in the western world. It should not therefore be a surprise that there is such a big antipathy, especially as they are such a social democracy when compared to the USA.

 

First paragraph excellent and very perceptive.

 

However I think the French attitude towards WW2 is much more complex. The French attitude is constantly changing as they rewrite history to present themselves in a more and more positive role.

 

Churchill was correct to ensure that France was allowed a zone of occupation in post war Germany. He understood that the French would have been impossible if their amour propre was not satisfied in some way.

 

Why does France have an ambivalent role towards the US? Well I met a person from Lorraine who told me that late 1944 French villages were terrified of being liberated by the Americans in particular. Why? Because if a single opposition shot rang out, American policy was to destroy the whole village by artillery and air attack to minimise American casualities.

 

Is that story true? No idea. The person who told me was a senior manager in Accenture so was certainly not an imbecile. He assurred me that the story was "common knowledge"

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
questsea73

Europe is far from my field of experience, although I lived in W Germany for 2 years in the 1970's. I do follow history to some extent.

 

I feel that any feeling of distrust of USA citizens toward the French now and for few past decades is a result of the official French governments attitudes/actions over every decade since WW 2 toward USA.

 

The behavior of the French I believe could mostly be laid to the personality of Gen. Charles deGaulle who by all accounts was a posturing, pompous, pride-comes-first attitude minor figurehead in most of the Allied structure in plans against the Nazis and their allies in World War 2. He took about 4th or 5th fiddle in the plans and his pride was severely damaged; I doubt that he ever recovered and when he later led France I think he did every thing in his power to show France didn't need foreign help, etc. from that point onward, and in particular USA help. I think he was able to instill this attitude in most French officials and many of the ordinary people....although with difficulty in the citizens in the towns where Patton's spearhead drove through on the road East to Berlin.

 

The Vichy government actions in support of the Nazi's was also an element that would or should have led USA and others to lower their estimate of French officials/government.

 

The French generals in World War 2 were later described at incompetents, idiots, etc whose entire idea of strategy/tactics was to throw frontal attacks of their men against entrenched, concertina-protected embattlements, often in the face of gas attacks. In other words they were butchers behind the lines. Undoubtedly a significant number of USA casualties were caused by this , although I think I remember at some point USA forces demanding separate chains of command to avoid coming under the command of these butchers.

 

I don't think the incompetance of the French in French Indo-China, highlighted at D.B.Phu should be seen as their fault for pulling USA into the war. I think that stupidity would have to be laid on USA Commander-in-Chief at that time, fearful of the further spread of militant communism---without good or accurate info on actual character of Ho Chi Minh or the devious, corrupt nature of leaders in the South. Many of the "Old Asia Hands" from long term stay in China(ejected in 1949 when Mao took over) were not listened to, were retired, were accused of being traitors when they voiced anything opposed to a hard line against Chinese or Chinese help to their Asian allies, therefore depriving C-in-Chief of the bulk of accurate intel from the area.

 

Also the notable failure of the French to put a decent quality car on the USA marketplace didn't hurt the antipathy felt toward France either....Renault, Citroen, etc.

 

Enough for the propaganda(German opinion ??) that the French were good for nothing except gourmet(in their opion) food and loving was able to gain a pretty good foothold in North America.

 

Ken

Link to post
Share on other sites

as i mentioned and honored in my post , as it appears the reasons are based upon old military "happenings", but then again that would mean that the USA must hate the UK and Germany even more.

 

So i can not agree really, because that would put the Americans down.

Hmmm....the guys you come to save start shooting & killing your guys.....I don't know, I would be a little ticked off personally. Not really the same thing as with the Brits & Germans as all sides at least have some respect for those who fought for their country.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Headshot

Love/hate emotions between nations is a very fickle thing. What happened yesterday is much more important that what happened seventy or two hundred years ago. I think there is a lot to the viewpoint that France is resentful of the fact that the US is a superpower while France is a backwater. Also, the US is resentful that France seems to be contrarian to everything the US does or believes in. These two nations are NOT friends. At best, they tolerate each other.

 

Telling of the relationship happened during the liberation of France in 1944. General De Gaulle demanded that French soldiers be the first to march through Paris even though it was Patton's US army that actually drove off the Germans around Paris. General Eisenhower allowed the French to have their parade. I wonder what would have happened if Eisenhower had said, "NO" and had Patton march through instead.

 

I doubt it would have changed the long-term feelings between the two countries, since later on, De Gaulle turned on the US anyway. During the Cold War, France actually had part of its nuclear missile force aimed at the US rather than the Soviet Union (and they probably still do). The French block the US at every turn in the UN. Whatever the US is for...France is against.

 

Like I said, the two nations tolerate each other at best. The US and France are certainly NOT friends. But...that could change tomorrow if something happens to draw the two nations together. You just never know.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Stranded Shipscook

Hmmm....the guys you come to save start shooting & killing your guys.....I don't know, I would be a little ticked off personally. Not really the same thing as with the Brits & Germans as all sides at least have some respect for those who fought for their country.

I don't see any problems with that, after all it was a war. And there is also mutual respect among US and other veterans.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Stranded Shipscook

Love/hate emotions between nations is a very fickle thing. What happened yesterday is much more important that what happened seventy or two hundred years ago. I think there is a lot to the viewpoint that France is resentful of the fact that the US is a superpower while France is a backwater. Also, the US is resentful that France seems to be contrarian to everything the US does or believes in. These two nations are NOT friends. At best, they tolerate each other.

 

Telling of the relationship happened during the liberation of France in 1944. General De Gaulle demanded that French soldiers be the first to march through Paris even though it was Patton's US army that actually drove off the Germans around Paris. General Eisenhower allowed the French to have their parade. I wonder what would have happened if Eisenhower had said, "NO" and had Patton march through instead.

 

I doubt it would have changed the long-term feelings between the two countries, since later on, De Gaulle turned on the US anyway. During the Cold War, France actually had part of its nuclear missile force aimed at the US rather than the Soviet Union (and they probably still do). The French block the US at every turn in the UN. Whatever the US is for...France is against.

 

 

I think, any nations is contrary to some US activities at sometime in their history, that is International Democracy.

And France is definitely not a backwater country, mate.

 

That liberation march is certainly a courtesy to give back some pride to France. I would think, Patton even suggested this himself as a great man of honor he was.

 

Now that nuclear weapons pointed at the USA interest me, i heard that the first time. Do you have a source i could read about ?

Link to post
Share on other sites
That liberation march is certainly a courtesy to give back some pride to France. I would think, Patton even suggested this himself as a great man of honor he was.

 

Not at all. De Gaulle was a guest of the British Government for much of the war, living in luxurious splendour in a large country house outside London. He always insisted that Paris be liberated by the Free French Army - much to Churchill's and Eisenhower's personal displeasure. De Gaulle hated the fact that he was excluded from much of the planning of Operation Overlord by both Churchill and Eisenhower - on Churchill's advice.

 

In fact, the FF battalion that led the victory parade had only landed in France a few days earlier and hadn't encountered any resistance. De Gaulle himself landed in France a day or so beforehand and was driven to Paris to lead the parade. As for Patton, he did lead a much larger parade through the streets of Paris on the following day and it was Patton's men, not De Gaulle's, who secured the city and cleaned-up the remaining pockets of the German occupying forces.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Europe is far from my field of experience, although I lived in W Germany for 2 years in the 1970's. I do follow history to some extent.

 

I feel that any feeling of distrust of USA citizens toward the French now and for few past decades is a result of the official French governments attitudes/actions over every decade since WW 2 toward USA.

 

The behavior of the French I believe could mostly be laid to the personality of Gen. Charles deGaulle who by all accounts was a posturing, pompous, pride-comes-first attitude minor figurehead in most of the Allied structure in plans against the Nazis and their allies in World War 2. He took about 4th or 5th fiddle in the plans and his pride was severely damaged; I doubt that he ever recovered and when he later led France I think he did every thing in his power to show France didn't need foreign help, etc. from that point onward, and in particular USA help. I think he was able to instill this attitude in most French officials and many of the ordinary people....although with difficulty in the citizens in the towns where Patton's spearhead drove through on the road East to Berlin.

 

The Vichy government actions in support of the Nazi's was also an element that would or should have led USA and others to lower their estimate of French officials/government.

 

The French generals in World War 2 were later described at incompetents, idiots, etc whose entire idea of strategy/tactics was to throw frontal attacks of their men against entrenched, concertina-protected embattlements, often in the face of gas attacks. In other words they were butchers behind the lines. Undoubtedly a significant number of USA casualties were caused by this , although I think I remember at some point USA forces demanding separate chains of command to avoid coming under the command of these butchers.

 

I don't think the incompetance of the French in French Indo-China, highlighted at D.B.Phu should be seen as their fault for pulling USA into the war. I think that stupidity would have to be laid on USA Commander-in-Chief at that time, fearful of the further spread of militant communism---without good or accurate info on actual character of Ho Chi Minh or the devious, corrupt nature of leaders in the South. Many of the "Old Asia Hands" from long term stay in China(ejected in 1949 when Mao took over) were not listened to, were retired, were accused of being traitors when they voiced anything opposed to a hard line against Chinese or Chinese help to their Asian allies, therefore depriving C-in-Chief of the bulk of accurate intel from the area.

 

Also the notable failure of the French to put a decent quality car on the USA marketplace didn't hurt the antipathy felt toward France either....Renault, Citroen, etc.

 

Enough for the propaganda(German opinion ??) that the French were good for nothing except gourmet(in their opion) food and loving was able to gain a pretty good foothold in North America.

 

Ken

 

Interesting poost with many thought provoking statements but to tackle one, according to the history books I read:

 

You mean WW1 of course, but what you say was true in the early years of the war only, especially 1914 when élan was considered to be the vital ingredient for victory.

 

What you say was certainly not true either at Verdun in 1916, nor at the Somme in 1916.

 

The Somme was a joint British/French offensive. The French army achieved all of their day one objectives and stopped. The British after 4 months and 500,000 casulaties never reached theirs.

 

Also I read that US casualties in WW1 were much higher than needed because Pershing thought he knew all of the answers and refused to listen to the more experienced French

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Stranded Shipscook

Not at all. De Gaulle was a guest of the British Government for much of the war, living in luxurious splendour in a large country house outside London. He always insisted that Paris be liberated by the Free French Army - much to Churchill's and Eisenhower's personal displeasure. De Gaulle hated the fact that he was excluded from much of the planning of Operation Overlord by both Churchill and Eisenhower - on Churchill's advice.

 

In fact, the FF battalion that led the victory parade had only landed in France a few days earlier and hadn't encountered any resistance. De Gaulle himself landed in France a day or so beforehand and was driven to Paris to lead the parade. As for Patton, he did lead a much larger parade through the streets of Paris on the following day and it was Patton's men, not De Gaulle's, who secured the city and cleaned-up the remaining pockets of the German occupying forces.

you mean Patton wasn't a man of Honor and would have never suggested that?

 

Well, it would be human and nice to the occupied French and undeniably suffering POPULATION .

 

Figure this- a nation has been just ran over and ruled by a fascist asshole country and their henchman. Then comes liberation and the first thing one see are the flags and soldiers of another nation. Good or bad isn't the debate..

i guess, if you would have been Patton, you'd done the same.

The gesture is, that France belongs to the French again, that's all whats in the symbolic.

 

Probably this is why Patton agreed to let the French lead the first marches. Its human. I liked that they let them do it.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Guidelines. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..