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Received this today in my inbox....loved it!

At the Airport...

An elderly gentleman of 83 arrived in Paris, France by airplane.

At the French customs desk, the man took a few minutes to locate his passport in his carry-on bag.

"You have been to France before, monsieur?" the customs officer asked, sarcastically.

The American admitted he had been to France previously.

"Then you should know enough to have your passport ready."

The American said, "The last time I was here, I didn't have to show it."

"Impossible. Americans always have to show your passports on arrival in France!"

The American senior gave the Frenchman a long hard look. Then he quietly explained,

"Well, when I came ashore at Omaha Beach on D-Day in 1944 to help liberate this country,

I couldn't find any Frenchmen to show it to."

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I spent 3 years stationed in Zweibruecken in Southwestern Germany on the French border. It was about a ten minute drive to France. When I first got there, I was excited. I thought I'd go to France a lot and check things out on weekends and such. Uh, Uh, one Saturday was enough for me. The first time I went across I was treated extremely rudely every time I opened my mouth. However, I was also trained as a German linguist and spent 3 years in Bremerhaven honing my Deutsch and can speak German without an American accent. When I spoke German, as opposed to English, I was still treated somewhat rudely, but there was a marked difference between the way they reacted to an American vs. a German. Go figure, when it was the Germans that subjugated them.

I only went back across one other time in the entire 3 years.

OT - OF!!!

M.

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Mike, I was also in Zweibruecken for a year in the military and a year as a civilian later. You are right about the French attitude. I have returned to Paris several times since and always found a way to not interact or immediately identify myself as an American. A very moving road trip is from Bremerhaven to Callais(spelling) France and look at the tens of thousands of American Grave Markers along the road. We still pay rent and maintenance, as Americans, on those burial sites.

Just a thought - I also sent time in Asia; Japan, Korea, Viet Nam, Hong Kong, etc.., both Civilian and Military and found there was no comparison to Europe. I have always been treated better in Asia.

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Funny, I was in France in 89'. In and around Paris, and Dieppe. I was there for a week, and never had to pay for a room, and rarely paid for food or drink. People treated me great, with the exception of one restaurant in Paris.

I was treated the same in Germany and Belguim. I do have to admit, most the Dutch I met were a-holes.

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I'm not sure what the point is of the original story, unless it's because we are supposed to be down on the French because they wouldn't join our Jingo parade to war.

They did help "liberate" us from the British, right? They did give us the Statue of Liberty, and set the example for our colonies with their own popular revolution. It is said that de Gaulle told Kennedy not to go into Vietnam, that it was a "sorry path".

Paris is 2000 years old. I would hope that there would be some wisdom resident in a culture that mature.

Hope this qualifies as "culture" and not the forbidden "politics".

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Originally posted by Jim Baird

I'm not sure what the point is of the original story, unless it's because we are supposed to be down on the French because they wouldn't join our Jingo parade to war.

No. It's more along the lines that you should at least show a token measure of respect to your friends that gave the lives of their sons and fathers to protect you.

The french participation in the War of the Revolution and their gift of the Statue of Liberty, are nothing in comparison to the selfless courage and tragic sacrifice left on the shores of Normandy.

...They did give us the Statue of Liberty, and set the example for our colonies with their own popular revolution.

American Revoultion: 1775-1783.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_revolution

French Revolution: 1789-1799.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Revolution

Sure about that?

A

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As I was going into a restaurant a few weeks ago I walked by a car that had two bumper stickers. One read: BOYCOTT FRANCE! The other was one of those ubiquitous yellow Support our Troops stickers. I was struck by the inane juxtaposition of those two stickers. I wanted to wait for the owner to discuss it with him, but my wife vetoed that idea immediately.

This thread brought a newspaper article to mind. Wow, I can't believe it's nearly two years old. I'm surprised I found it. It's as pertinent now as it was two years ago.

Joe Hancaviz

Nazareth, PA

http://www.sacbee.com/content/opinion/national/ivins/story/6136732p-7092269c.html

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I don't think the average American is "down on the France" because they wouldn't join the war. I have an idea it might be because they went behind our backs and sold goods with Sadam including military supplies and materials (yeah, I know the Germans and Ruskies did it too). Can you say "Oil for Food Program?" Even at that I don't think the average American was really that down on Frenchy until they stonewalled us in the U.N. and thwarted every U.S. effort to rid the world of Sadam and terrorist vacation camps even to the point of declaring they would veto anything the Security Council came up with if it involved removing Sadam from Iraq.

That....that.... may have done it.

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