By Stephen Clarke


Bonjour cher reader,

Ever considering ecu historical past started, we Brits were fortunately engaged in our nationwide hobby - demanding the French. And the prior couple of years have proven that this stressful by no means stops. to provide simply 3 examples:

After a mid-Atlantic collision among French and British nuclear submarines, France's Minister of Defence appeared to blame the coincidence on ... shrimps.

When French political famous person Dominique Strauss-Kahn was once arrested in ny, France's institution was once outraged. It quickly emerged that sexual harassment was once considered as a simple human correct by way of the country's male élite. (This subject supplied lots first-class fabric that i made a decision to incorporate it within the plot of my soon-to-be released novel, The Merde Factor.)

And whilst David Cameron walked out of a Eurosummit, a French baby-kisser accused him of being 'like a guy at a wife-swapping celebration who refuses to convey his personal wife.' convinced, a really French photo, and it only one of the numerous anti-Anglais insults that got here flying around the Channel.

You will locate all this, and masses extra, in Annoying the French Encore! Because, for the French, the merde by no means ends.

Yours historically,

Stephen Clarke, Paris, August 2012

‘Tremendously enjoyable’ Sunday Times
‘Relentlessly and energetically impolite’ Mail on Sunday

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It used to be precisely the type of specific denial that means the tale is perhaps real. Mr Brown extra that ‘there isn't any notion to merge using plane carrier’, thereby suggesting he was once unaware that any army may perhaps find the money for a couple of plane service, and in the meantime getting so distinctive in his denial that he confident everybody this kind of merger used to be certainly at the playing cards. whereas the rumours have been tossed round on waves of hypothesis, the British and French navies themselves did their most sensible to teach that co-operation used to be most likely a really undesirable inspiration certainly. In early February 2009, the French Ministry of Defence introduced that one in all its nuclear submarines, Le Triomphant, had had a minor twist of fate whereas on patrol within the northern Atlantic. It had collided, so the legit assertion stated, with a submerged item, ‘probably a box’ (which can have been a neat approach of blaming the chinese language, these importers of inexpensive items that so annoy the makers of French luxurious brands). in spite of the fact that, British journalists started to dig round and published that the collision had in truth been with a British nuclear sub, HMS forefront. more often than not, the MoD had no longer even said the incident. How, each person really justifiably desired to comprehend, had vessels outfitted with the simplest detection gear naval engineers ever invented, been in a position to stumble upon one another? And, extra importantly for us civilians, was once the Atlantic seabed now plagued by nuclear missiles and piles of radioactive submarine? Assuring every person that there have been no nuclear toxins in any respect (another a type of worryingly specific denials), France’s then Minister of Defence, Hervé Morin, got here up with a perfectly French reason behind the coincidence. those glossy submarines, he acknowledged, ‘make much less noise than a shrimp’. Coming from Normandy, he's maybe extra services than different French politicians to surreal seafood similes. It was once only a disgrace that he didn’t pass directly to display France’s plans for a fleet of undercover nuclear crustaceans. 1 Morin additionally went one element too some distance, as Gordon Brown had performed past, through announcing that ‘French submarines don’t hunt British submarines’, yet the following he was once most likely being honest; the matter looked to be that the subs have been frequently patrolling a similar waters whereas deploying their anti-detection units. All in all, a few naval specialists recommended, it could truly be a good suggestion if Britain and France did co-operate extra on naval concerns. It used to be virtually as if the coincidence, high priced and unsafe because it used to be, were prepared to aid the plans to merge the 2 navies. President Nicolas Sarkozy additionally sailed in to help the merger, and took the chance to teach off his strategic wisdom, or loss of it. He said that: ‘France and Britain’s clocks strike an analogous hour on the related time,’ demonstrating a stunning lack of expertise of Greenwich suggest Time and the one-hour time distinction among Paris and London. He appeared to suggest that the 2 nations have been at the similar wavelength militarily talking, for as soon as of their lengthy background.

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