As of June 2007, I have redesigned and relaunched the site at www.thedissidentfrogman.com/blog
This page won’t be updated anymore, and remains here for archiving purposes. After all, that’s a piece of my history.

I’m just next door, really. I have consolidated all the content of the site since 2002, and I’m running on a much improved software.

Please update bookmarks and blogrolls:
http://www.thedissidentfrogman.com (preferred)
or
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See you there.

A compter de juin 2007, j'ai redesigné et relancé le site en www.thedissidentfrogman.com/blog
Cette page ne sera plus mise à jour, et demeure à titre d'archive. Après tout, c'est un morceau de mon histoire.

Je ne suis pas loin, vraiment. J'ai consolidé tout le contenu depuis 2002, et je tourne sur un logiciel bien plus amélioré.

Merci de mettre à jour bookmarks et blogrolls:
http://www.thedissidentfrogman.com (de préférence)
ou
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Rendez-vous là-bas.

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June 30, 2003

Tertian Fever • Fièvre Tierce

Fired from France by the dissident frogman

WARNING: A lot of bogus information and falsehood is being relayed, based on some serious misuderstanding of the following article.
Before you jump to conclusions, before you decide to post about it on your site, blog or forum, it is crucial that you read this article that provides essential information on this issue that may not be as bad as it's being reported. Thanks.
UPDATE:
Final words from the dissident frogman and miscellaneous apologies here

I'm just coming back from Normandy and still have to unpack, but I wanted to offer you a new game to play, particularly if you're in for a D-Day tour this summer.

If you planned it, you may want to cancel your visit to the Musée Mémorial de la Bataille de Normandie (Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy) in Bayeux.

Unless you would like to play this game, I told you about.

It's called: "Guess what's missing at a museum dedicated to the Battle of Normandy, 1944?"

Let's see if you're as good at this game as the dissident frogman:

1) Guess what's missing on an empty pole, around a monument to the liberators in the Museum's park up front?



2) Guess what's missing in an empty space in the lapel pin's display case at the Museum's shop?



3) Guess what's missing on an empty pedestal on top of the Museum shop's checkout, at the exit?



That game is piece of cake right?

I could fire up a ferocious comment but I'm still disgusted by these three "coincidences".
What's more, I couldn't get any lucid and convincing explanation for this "fortuitous" accrual.

But maybe you can:

Bayeux's Mayor office:
cabinetdumaire@mairie-bayeux.fr

The Memorial Museum:
museedelabataille@free.fr
Boulevard Fabian Ware - 14400 Bayeux
Phone : +33 (0)2 31 51 46 90
Fax : +33 (0)2 31 51 46 91

As a reference, the direct link to this post is:
http://www.thedissidentfrogman.com/dacha/000185.html

Next year, we'll commemorate the 60 years of D-Day and the beginning of the liberation of Europe, from the West (on the East, the Red Army led a conquest war, multiplying the exactions. Not a liberation one).

I'm sure the Museum's administration or Bayeux's town hall (which, in fact, I suspect to be the same) can come up with a good reason for this weighty absence.

And explain us the game's rules.

UPDATE:
From Bulgaria, Jkrank weights in at Sofia Sideshow, with an inspiring template, in case you'd want to ask the Museum's staff to explain the game's rules.

Jkrank is not the mean-spirited type.

Fortunately.

Else, he would have written down the address of the Museum and suggested an idea that would add to the already prodigious records of international aid coming from the United States.

He's just too magnanimous in my opinion.

Don't forget about the Mayor's office though.

UPDATE II:
You might want to have a closer look...

the empty pole
the empty space
the empty pedestal
UPDATE III:
For our third rate experts in photo editing who swallow without bating an eye the assertions of any given dictator when he swear he's peaceful even though he "slightly" exterminated a part of his population sometimes but detect a plot in humble photos such as the ones illustrating this post, there goes the high resolution versions.
Careful, it's heavy.

the empty pole
the empty space
the empty pedestal

And oh... I'm not going back on that anymore. Those who want to believe these pictures are fakes are probably those who bought Meyssan's lamentable theory. So yeah, no plane crashed on the Pentagone, these pictures have been doctored and the CIA is responsible for all the misery in the world.

Thanks for not leaving your alternative reality too often.

WARNING: A lot of bogus information and falsehood is being relayed, based on some serious misuderstanding of the following article.
Before you jump to conclusions, before you decide to post about it on your site, blog or forum, it is crucial that you read this article that provides essential information on this issue that may not be as bad as it's being reported. Thanks.
UPDATE II:
Final words from the dissident frogman and miscellaneous apologies here


Expect more about Normandy in the coming days - Joe is fine though, but I have a few things to say and show you about Tommy.

However, coffee first. And unpacking.
Dirty underwear, missing socks to generate a usable pair, joy of the world traveler.

I'm awfully late with the mail. I was before leaving for Normandy and of course, it got worse.
My sincere apology to all the people who wrote me lately and are expecting an answer.

That rules out the pathetic assclown coming from the company that fences the State monopoly on the routing of written correspondence - as a fact, you should be slaving away to pretend you're deserving the salary your employer is stealing partly in my pocket, instead of spending the day browsing the Web and voicing afflictive opinions in a chancy French, you feckless parasite.

Nevertheless I will write back to the friends, I promise.
ATTENTION: beaucoup de fausses informations sont actuellement relayées, se basant sur des incompréhensions de l'article suivant.
Avant que vous ne tiriez des conclusions, avant que vous ne décidiez de poster à ce sujet sur votre site, blog ou forum, il est crucial que vous lisiez cet article qui fournit des informations essentielles sur cette situation qui n'est peut être pas aussi grave que cela est en train d'être rapporté. Merci.
MISE Á JOUR II :
Derniers mots du dissident frogman et diverses excuses ici

Je viens juste de rentrer de Normandie et il me faut déballer mes valises, mais je voulais vous proposer un nouveau jeu, particulièrement si vous envisagiez une tournée Jour-J cet été.

Si vous l'aviez mis au programme, vous voudrez peut être annuler la visite au Musée Mémorial de la Bataille de Normandie à Bayeux.

Sauf si vous avez envie de jouer au jeu en question, bien entendu.

C'est : "Devinez ce qui manque dans un musée dédié à la Bataille de Normandie, 1944 ?"

Voyons si vous êtes aussi doué à ce jeu que le dissident frogman :

1) Devinez ce qui manque sur un mât vide autour d'une stèle dédiée aux libérateurs, dans le parc du musée, juste devant ?



2) Devinez ce qui manque dans un espace vide dans la vitrine des pin's de la boutique du musée ?



3) Devinez ce qui manque dans un socle vide sur les caisses de la boutique du musée, à la sortie ?



Super fastoche ce jeu, pas vrai ?

Je pourrais lâcher un commentaire féroce mais je suis toujours écoeuré par ces trois "coïncidences".
De plus, je n'ai pas pu obtenir d'explication claire et convaincante pour cette accumulation "fortuite".

Mais peut-être le pouvez vous :

Cabinet du maire de Bayeux :
cabinetdumaire@mairie-bayeux.fr

Le Musée Mémorial :
museedelabataille@free.fr
Boulevard Fabian Ware - 14400 Bayeux
Tél. : 02 31 51 46 90
Fax : 02 31 51 46 91

A titre de référence, le lien direct vers ce post est:
http://www.thedissidentfrogman.com/dacha/000185.html

L'année prochaine, nous célébrerons les 60 ans du Jour-J et le début de la libération de l'Europe par l'Ouest (à l'Est, l'Armée Rouge à mené une guerre de conquête, en multipliant les exactions. Pas une guerre de libération).

Je suis certain que l'administration du Musée ou la Mairie de Bayeux (qu'en fait je soupçonne de ne former qu'une seule entité) peuvent nous donner une bonne raison pour cette pesante absence.

Et nous expliquer les règles du jeu.

MISE A JOUR :
De Bulgarie, Jkrank entre dans l'arène à Sofia Sideshow, avec un modèle de lettre inspirateur, au cas où vous voudriez demander les règles du jeu à l'équipe du Musée.

Jkrank n'est pas un méchant homme.

Heureusement.

Sinon, il aurait reproduit l'adresse du musée et suggéré une idée qui s'ajouterait au score déjà prodigieux de l'aide internationale en provenance des États Unis.

Il est bien trop magnanime à mon avis.

N'oubliez pas le cabinet du Maire, au fait.
MISE A JOUR II :
Vous voudrez peut être voir cela de plus près...

le mât vide
l'espace vide
le socle vide
MISE A JOUR III :
A l'usage de nos experts en retouche à la petite semaine qui avalent sans broncher les affirmations du premier dictateur venu lorsqu'il jure ses grand dieux que ses intentions sont pacifiques même si il lui est déjà arrivé de "légèrement" exterminer sa population mais décèlent le complot dans d'humbles photos telles celles qui illustrent ce post, voici les versions haute résolution.
'tention, c'est lourd.

le mât vide
l'espace vide
le socle vide

Et à propos, je ne reviens plus là dessus. Ceux qui veulent croire que ces photos sont truquées sont probablement les mêmes que ceux qui s'accrochent à la lamentable théorie de Meyssan. Alors ouais, aucun avion ne s'est crashé sur le Pentagone, ces photos sont truquées et la CIA est responsable de toute la misère du monde.

Merci de ne pas quitter votre réalité alternative trop souvent.

ATTENTION: beaucoup de fausses informations sont actuellement relayées, se basant sur des incompréhensions de l'article suivant.
Avant que vous ne tiriez des conclusions, avant que vous ne décidiez de poster à ce sujet sur votre site, blog ou forum, il est crucial que vous lisiez cet article qui fournit des informations essentielles sur cette situation qui n'est peut être pas aussi grave que cela est en train d'être rapporté. Merci.
MISE Á JOUR II :
Derniers mots du dissident frogman et diverses excuses ici


Attendez vous à plus à propos de la Normandie dans les jours qui viennent - Joe va bien, cela dit, mais j'ai deux ou trois choses à vous dire et à vous montrer à propos de Tommy.

Mais d'abord, café. Et déballage.
Sous-vêtements sales, chaussettes manquantes pour générer une paire utilisable, joies du globe-trotter.

Je suis affreusement en retard avec les emails. Je l'étais avant de partir pour la Normandie et bien entendu, cela s'est encore gâté.
Mes excuses sincères à ceux qui m'ont écrit et attendent une réponse.

Cela exclut le pathétique cul de clown en provenance de l'entreprise receleuse du monopole d'État pour l'acheminement de la correspondance papier - vous devriez d'ailleurs bosser pour faire semblant de mériter le salaire que votre employeur vole en partie dans ma poche, au lieu de passer vos journées à surfer et à exprimer d'affligeantes opinions en un français douteux, inepte parasite.

Mais je répondrais aux amis, c'est promis.

TrackBacks

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» Capture the Flag from The Axis of Weasels
The Dissident Frogman just got back from his trip to Normandy.  He has some very disturbing news about his trip to the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy, where American flags are conspicuously missing from several places.  Flags are... [Read More]

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The Dissident Frogman just got back from his trip to Normandy.  He has some very disturbing news about his trip to the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy, where American flags are conspicuously missing from several places.  Flags are... [Read More]

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» You dirty rats... from El Gato Bloggo
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The Dissident Frogman (www.thedissidentfrogman.com) has recently been to a war museum in Normandy, France, where he found out that the [Read More]

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» Capture the Flag from The Axis of Weasels
The Dissident Frogman just got back from his trip to Normandy.  He has some very disturbing news about his trip to the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy, where American flags are conspicuously missing from several places.  Flags are... [Read More]

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Comments

Maybe they all sold out because of the heartfelt feeling of pro-Americanism, especially this close to July 4th?

Posted by: jkrank | July 1, 2003 07:41 AM

Another point I notice is that the French flags exhibited are not the right ones. In 1944 these were those used by Vichy and the Milice. The right French flags had a Lorraine cross on it. Reverting to the old flag was one the first things the communists did in the cities they controlled. Do you know what party controls Bayeux?

Posted by: JFM | July 1, 2003 10:00 AM

JFM: These French flags (In and around the Museum) aren't selected and waved from an historical point of view (there are some historically accurate inside the Museum's collection, of course) but as the official current ones. That's the three colors, without any other motif or sign. In that respect, they are the right ones.

As for Bayeux's majority, I must confess I have no idea who's in command (or "where" politically, is the team in charge).

That said I'm afraid it wouldn't make any difference. Anti-Americanism in France is equally shared among the whole political spectrum.

From the Far right to the far left, uniformly. Pensée unique is such a national specialty.

And as far as History is concerned, that's a perturbing "coincidence".

Yep, another one...

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 10:39 AM

In May, French minister of the Treasury Francis Mere flew the American Treasury Secretary (Snow) to the beaches at Normandy and to the big American cemetery there, to try to make clear the deep bond in blood (American blood) that tied the French and Americans together. It was part of the ongoing French government's "Forgive and forget" campaign (i.e. their campaign to try to get the Americans to forgive and forget a year of treachery).

Even as Mer was using our own honored dead against us, his own people were busy erasing those same dead from their historical rememberances. The stunning hypocrisy involved would be beyond belief for anyone except for the French government, where it is business as usual.

There is a pun in English that probably doesn't directly translate: "gall" means the same thing as the word "chutzpah", while "Gaul" (pronounced the same way) is France. These days it isn't so much a pun as the literal truth.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste | July 1, 2003 11:06 AM

Suite a cet article , je suis plus que revolté quand a l'attitude des representants de la France a Bayeux , je me serais jamais attendu a un telle insulte pour moi aucune excuse n'est recevable oubli ou non , il est clair que la volonte de certains de vouloir a tout prix montrer cet anti-americanisme exacerbé , est allé jusqu'a insulter des soldats morts pour la France.

Je suis depité et je n'arrive pas a comprendre pourquoi la France est devenue ainsi et est tombé tellement bas .

De toute façon on change pas l'histoire ce qui est fait , est fait et a mes yeux la France a perdu bien des choses et notament le sens de l'Honneur.

Je pense que cette affaire n'en restera pas la .....................

Posted by: Fred | July 1, 2003 12:09 PM

The ommission of the US flag at a Museum dedicated to the liberation of France from fascism is one of the most childish, absurdly self-ingulgent, and hateful things I have ever seen. Are the lives of theses people so empty, so lacking in any notion of right and wrong - that the DEAD should be not merely not remembered, but shunned?

Will they ever understand how long they kept the rest of the world wrapt in their filthy little intra-european problems? Do they even realize that the rest of the world even exists or has a life of its' own? That all those people in the wide world out there might not think exactly as they do? That they may not want to be told what or how to think?

WHile they decry being surrounded by international culture, won't they even admit to themselves the extent they imposed their language, foolish relativism, their self absorbed ennui, and even their damned CUISINE on the entire world?

Since when was cuisine the sum of all culture anyway?

They should find something else to hate if they want to amuse themselves. Something benign. Something that isn't going to get in the way of the people who are trying to make French lives better and safer as a by-product of trying to make their own lives better and safer.

I once ADORED France. My late father was awarded the Legion D'Honneur - I was thankful and felt a great kinship for the French Republic. I used to chalk up every nasty quip in the French mono-culture and the media as a curious cultural quirk, and as "another opinion" worth concidering...

No more. What little remains of their public culture - what may be the only thing that binds them together is nothing more than an absurd hatred of "the foreigner" - and all the while they try to parade their fake internationalist drivel like some empty-headed Benneton billboard.

Let's face it. They have always been racists and cultural bigots. They have never been able to really absorb new ideas - or find themselves responsible for their own actions. Their population at large has never plumbed the depth of its' souls to see themselves as they are. Hubris doesn't allow such things.

Every day they lose the ear of another intelligent and reasonable person.

Posted by: J. | July 1, 2003 01:29 PM

JFM: These French flags (In and around the Museum) aren't selected and waved from an historical point of view (there are some historically accurate inside the Museum's collection, of course) but as the official current ones.

Right -- otherwise the missing U.S. flags would have to be the pre-1959 48-star variety...

Posted by: McGehee | July 1, 2003 01:49 PM

I am reminded of the "Arab Street" dancing with glee after 9/11. An ugly sight, to be sure, but one worth seeing. It is important to know one's enemy. One should pay attention when he bares his soul. The French are providing Americans with a valuable glimpse into their collective soul, and many of us are paying close attention.

Posted by: David Cabana | July 1, 2003 01:54 PM

Not unbelievable, not surprising. Just another round of pettiness from the surrender frogs. I have been advocating bringing our dead from frenched france home and bury them among our other honoured dead at Arlington. I think it's time the frogs were left isolated with their internal problems. And they are facing some BIG ones, notwithstanding the burgeoning one of 'dissident' muslims. Under no circumstances should we ever send in troops to rescue them ever again, no matter how humanitarian is the excuse of being involved.

Posted by: quark2 | July 1, 2003 02:04 PM

Ingrates.

Posted by: BarCodeKing | July 1, 2003 02:17 PM

The maire of Bayeux is Patrick GOMONT, from the "UDF", a right-wing party (this party is also at the actual government).

I'm desolated for this horror, even if i'm not French but Belgian. I think often of the brave men who came here to liberate us from the nazis, and I talk for myself : thanks for everything.

Many thanks to you. I hope to be able to help your country one day.

Cédric.

Posted by: gadrel | July 1, 2003 03:17 PM

To France:
From: America

You are welcome. And by the way, thanks for the reminder. Knowing one's enemies is especially important in these troubled times. How sad to see just how small the once great nation of France has become. You are more to be pitied than hated.

Like most Americans, I have a relatives who gave their lives to liberate your country. It is my fervent hope and prayer that not one more drop of American blood (or dollar) will ever again be expended on such an unworthy people.

John McCrarey

Posted by: John McCrarey | July 1, 2003 03:19 PM

Gentlemans,

I am really sad today that such a thing could arrive, I also think that France is not any more the friend of the USA since good a long time.

France always had interests but any true friend.

I think that one day, there will be kickbacks

But, I hold has to add a thing France which existed before the war is died the day or a General said the americains outside, (withdrawal of France of the integré system of NATO)

Posted by: Fred | July 1, 2003 03:23 PM

I wonder what my pap-pap (paternal grandfather) would have to say about this. He risked his life as a merchant marine during WWII.

Posted by: amy | July 1, 2003 03:29 PM

My 12-year old son just got back from a visit to France with the People to People Student Ambassodors. At a school they visited in Caen, the kids knew at least two words of English: "F**k Bush." I don't think that's the kind of international understanding that Dwight Eisenhower had in mind when he started People to People.

Posted by: Joseph K | July 1, 2003 03:47 PM

I have in my possession the Nazi flag that flew over the Mairie of Armagnac, and was removed by my wife's grandfather on the day the town was liberated. I have offered it to the Mairie of Bayeux as obviously the stars and stripes offend them so much.
I wouldn't be surprised at this stage if they take me up on my offer.

Posted by: Edmund Burke | July 1, 2003 03:56 PM

Having visited the "we hate America" museum in Caen last October (I know it has another name, peace memorial or something), I'm not surprised.

Posted by: Lynn | July 1, 2003 04:01 PM

I have one thing to say *** RE-TAKE NORMANDY ***
Our fallen deserver better than this!

Posted by: Stan | July 1, 2003 04:09 PM

What's extremly funny is that I was at Bayeux this WE.

And I've seen those missing flags ... are you sure you don't removed those flags yourself ?

Do you mind posting high resolution picture to just to see if they were not doctored ?

I case you wonder : I don't trust you I think you are stirring the pot just for your own pleasure.


Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 04:16 PM

That was a very insulting thing to do by the museum. OK, I'm insulted, but the shame is on France.

Posted by: Pat | July 1, 2003 04:24 PM

This is extremely childish and petty, almost as bad as someone renaming a potato based dish.

Posted by: Johnny | July 1, 2003 04:52 PM

The French government will most likely replace the American flag with one representing an arab (dictator) nation since they love and protect them so much ! By having close ties with these animals, the French will burn their fingers when islamic fundamentalists take over their country. I expect that day to come very soon.
When that happens, America won't be around to save these traitors again !

G.. bless America and Israel and F..K France

Posted by: David | July 1, 2003 04:53 PM

Enjoy this petty pleasure while it lasts, you disgusting sons of bitches (not you Diss). Enjoy it, really milk it for all it is worth. Because when your miserable society collapses AGAIN, there will be no US cavalry riding in to save you from the Germans, or the Soviets, or the unassimilated Muslim radicals you have grown and carefully nurtured for these past two decades. When your streets are on fire and Versailles is burning, you think back to those missing flags and those simplistic cowboys you openly mocked and scorned.

They are gone and they are NEVER coming back, do you understand? NEVER. You filthy, ungrateful, dishonorable cocksuckers! You want our tourism dollars, you miserable craven bastards? You're more likely to get a Marine expedionary force to secure the Normandy beachhead -- AGAIN -- and remove the bodies of those who gave their lives to free your nation of cowards and return them to a land where sacrifice, duty, honor, committment and FRIENDSHIP still means something.

Dear GOD, are there no depths to which French people will not sink?

Posted by: Bill Whittle | July 1, 2003 04:53 PM

...and guess where #19 hails from?

As they say on LGF, in regards to #19: G A Z E

Posted by: Keith McComb | July 1, 2003 04:54 PM

I was wondering how long it would take someone to mention 'freedom fries'. 21 posts really isn't that bad. Those who can't tell the vast difference between renaming fried potatos and directly insulting those who gave their lives to protect you, are........ fury won't allow me to express it.

Posted by: Sebastian Holsclaw | July 1, 2003 05:00 PM

While I have no doubt that many French share anti-American sentiments right now, just as many of us have anti-French feelings, I seriously doubt the authenticity of these photos.

It's amazing how easily photos can be doctored nowadays.

Posted by: John | July 1, 2003 05:01 PM

They could be fake, they could be real.

The fact that the mere idea of them being real isn't laughable in and of itself says more about France than whether or not some local museum is having a erruption of Anit-American idiocy.

It is time that the US stopped pretending that the French are allies, or even friends. They're at best wannabe, ridiculously envious rivals, and most often a passle of ankle-biting brats whose confidence is derived purely from the knowledge that we won't stoop to the sort of behaviour they manifested back when they were on top.

We should treat France the same way we would treat any other envious has-been pipsqueak - ignore them, and go about our business. The only thing that grants 'le France' any 'importance' is our archaic and anachronistic habit of treating them as important.

France is culturally decayed, economically stagnant, politically backward, and scientifically void. It has nothing to offer, so why do so many people insist on paying it such undeserved attention.

Take Spain - better food, better wine, nicer culture. Take Italy - prettier monuments, nicer food. Heck, take pretty much any country in Europe - you'll find a better economy, nicer buildings, livelier culture, and certainly better prospects for the future.

Of course, considering that France is well into the process of dying out, since even French women can't stand French men, that's all relative I suppose.

Posted by: Jim P - Madrid | July 1, 2003 05:18 PM

I find it funny that people would rather assume the worst (doctored photos) than accept the fact that the French, despite horrendous sacrifices in the name of freedom by American armed forces in 1944 and, indeed, more recently, simply hate the US. Remember Ockham's Razor, folks. What's the least complex explanation here?

Posted by: Andy | July 1, 2003 05:25 PM

I hold nevertheless has to say to you that France for already twenty years has not stopped making errors, large errors, in occurrence by giving reception has ayatollahs, and bringing its supports has various countries whose governments are more than doubtful by having especially an Arab policy pro.

To my opinion it will arrive one moment or each one will have to choose are camp, France as for her prefer to be between two fires, she will end up being made puff out.

In any event the French government has a policy releases by letting on the one hand all this beautiful world go and to come has the interior and well on by allowing that, it lets capital leave, capital which could be useful has actions against the interests americain or israeliens in the world.

Posted by: Fred | July 1, 2003 05:41 PM

Here's the addr for the French embassy, to add to the addresses above. I'm sure they also would like to know what you think about this. Does anyone have an address for Chirac? He'd probably enjoy your comments too.

http://www.info-france-usa.org/contactus.asp

Posted by: Lywnood | July 1, 2003 05:46 PM

This is disappointing news, yes. But the Americans who sacrificed their lives to defeat the Axis powers did not do so out of a desire for praise and gratitude. The deed itself was the goal and the reward. The soldiers and workers of all of the liberating nations showered themselves with a glory that cannot be sullied by the likes of the curators at the Musée Mémorial de la Bataille de Normandie.

Posted by: Weston | July 1, 2003 05:53 PM

Remember folks, the French were liberated from the Nazis as Sir Galahad was liberated from the castle full of amorous virgins in "Monty Python's Quest for the Holy Grail:" Once their fate had been decided from the outside, none could admit that they really quite liked their predicament. So they elected Mitterand, Hitler's caretaker.

Why should it have been so hard for the French to worry that Mitterand really was a Nazi? Let's not forget that fascism is nothing other than socialist authoritarianism in a plutocratic society. Is that such a bad description of Ftance. Mussolini described Fascism as a "third way," between communism and free markets. Is it any wonder the French loved hearing Clinton talk of such a "third way?" I describe it as jumping half way across the canyon between socialism and free markets.

Posted by: Dan Marsh | July 1, 2003 06:17 PM

My now-deceased father nearly had his leg nearly severed by German bullets and lay bleeding overnight in a field somewhere in the French countryside before he was rescued by his fellow soldiers in 1944. One of my best friend's father is 85 years old and still carries shrapnel in his skull from injuries sustained on the Normandy beaches on D-Day.

I hope to God that the photos ARE doctored, because words can't describe how I feel right now after viewing them.

God Bless America. Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.

Posted by: Gee | July 1, 2003 06:19 PM

I'm willing to bet that the removal of the American symbols from the memorial was not done by Congressional decree, unlike our "freedom fries" in the Hill cafeteria, et al. It's all a matter of scale. How much do the French people have to put up with from us before they're entitled to be "childish and petty" as our lawmakers and citizens? Yes, indeed, damn you pigs for not putting up with us for longer! Damn you indeed!

Posted by: Michael Wallace | July 1, 2003 06:22 PM

Exactly.

Posted by: Rich Peterson | July 1, 2003 06:26 PM

A really enterprising journalist would take a tour of World War II monuments in France and see just how extensive this selective memory has become.

Posted by: lindenen | July 1, 2003 06:27 PM

Next time someone, Brits or us Krauts, invades France to kick their sorry asses, will you please, please stay the hell out and mind your own business. Better yet, join us.

Posted by: Fritz | July 1, 2003 06:27 PM

Gee that's about as a bucket of Freedom Fries clarified with bovine blood. Nice to see that both sides can be ridiulously childish when it comes to promoting nationalistic bigotry in the face of differing attitudes towards wars of aggression.

Posted by: Observer | July 1, 2003 06:32 PM

well done french people. its about time that some other country does EXACTLY what we have been doing to them for the last year. americans are seen across the global as greedy, stupid assholes, and sadly in the case of our leadership and a large chunk of the population, they are correct.

we can eat our freedom fries and they can take down the US flag. its too bad we have to give up french kissing as well isnt it....

Posted by: wes | July 1, 2003 06:35 PM

I think, once we settle the hash of the Wahabbis, it will be time for Normandy II. "This time, it's personal."

Posted by: Gary Utter | July 1, 2003 06:36 PM

Well, perhaps if you yanks werent so busy bashing france, pouring french wine down drains, calling them the "axis of appathy", generally acting like a spoiled brat, perhaps the french wouldnt feel so angry?

what goes around comes around, you delt it out, suck it down.

Posted by: Someasshole | July 1, 2003 06:36 PM

Has anyone heard back from the museum staff? I can't imagine this story is true.

Posted by: Smitty | July 1, 2003 06:36 PM

A more direspectful act I can't remember. To those American families who had a member die saving France from the Germans please remember them with pride and honor. For those who live or support France go to hell and die.

Posted by: bob rosenberg | July 1, 2003 06:37 PM

Let me see if I get this straight:

We (Americans, that is) act like complete ass-monkeys toward the French for not supporting us in what, by many people all over the world, was considered an unacceptable use of power. We insult them, ridicule them and generally prove why the term "Ugly American" exists. Yet we have the gall to complain when they finally "fire back"? If we're going to act like children, we should not be suprised when we get treated like children.

Posted by: Teufelaffe | July 1, 2003 06:38 PM

Why don't the French run their *real* flag up that center pole? You know, that white rag?

Posted by: Rich | July 1, 2003 06:41 PM

We give you Disneyland, and this is how you thank us?

Posted by: Voltaire | July 1, 2003 06:41 PM

I'm with ya #39, you make some excellent points.

So it's ok for the majority of the American populace to shun and make fun of the French at every chance they get, but the French do the same to America, and all of a sudden it's not right? Talk about hipocrisy.

Just remembered which country started the childish behavior first.

Posted by: Langdon | July 1, 2003 06:42 PM

"funny as"

Btw - Which flag Threatened France with unspecified "consequences" for not being their political puppets?

Oops #34 sorry, the use of the same terms (in my prev post) to describe the situation as you did was entirely coincidental.

Posted by: Observer | July 1, 2003 06:44 PM

…And I was wondering how long it would take someone to challenge the authenticity of my photos.

I just updated the post with larger versions (800 pixels wide, 72 dpi) for the..."forensic" experts in the audience. Help yourself.

I can come up with the 300 dpi source if you don't mind getting heavy pictures.

What the people challenging the authenticity of the pictures don't understand is that I have nothing to gain in faking such information.

I'm not the BBC, Liberation or the New York Times. I'm just the dissident frogman.
The whole idea behind this site is to reveal this kind of things whenever I step on them.

I'm not paid, I'm not sponsored, in short, I have nothing to expect or to offer other than alternative information that will never ever make its way to the big media.

Particularly the seriously biased French ones.

I was in Normandy last October, for the same reason I was these past days. To honor the fallen soldiers who liberated my country.
Having in mind the events that occurred since last October, I was hoping that I wouldn't step on such afflictive practice and, gladly enough, I can't say I didn't.
Most of the places in Normandy where I went these past days where - all in all - in conformity with what one could expect from the French region where the memory of what we ought to the Allied heroes is the most vivacious.

BESIDE the Bayeux Museum that is.

(I won't mention the appalling Caen Memorial for Peace - See Lynn's comment (#17) to this post. It's a short but pertinent depiction of this so-called "memorial")

When I first saw the empty pole, I thought that it was a bit surprising but, after all, there was surely some reason. I mean, come on, not here. Not in Normandy.

But then the empty pedestal, RIGHT beside the French, British and Canadian flags? And the empty space in the display case?

Coincidences? All of them, at the same time?

I can't convince the people who want to believe that I faked these pictures.

Guess what? I don't mean to.

All I know is that I went to Bayeux, among other places, and that while on my way to the British cemetery and memorial that's next to the Museum, I noticed something "funny" with these three poles waving only two flags. I then proceeded to the Museum, bought a ticket and since the shop is (always) at the end of the visit, couldn't miss the two other "disturbing coincidences".

I shot the pictures for MY records (and posted them on MY weblog), got out of the Museum and shot the third picture with the missing flag on the third pole.

And went to my initial destination, the British war cemetery, with an upsetting feeling.

I've always considered Normandy as some kind of "safe haven" as far as French anti-Americanism was concerned and it probably still is, in most parts (not mentioning the infamous Caen Memorial for Peace).
I posted about the deep and strong link I have with "Joe and Tommy" (For the new visitors in the audience, look for the "Consecration" post). I wrote about my parents telling me about them on "Bloody Omaha" while I was a kid, telling me about my grand parents who took serious risks to hide a US flight team during the Nazi Occupation.

Today, I had lunch with my parents and I told them about these coincidences. I read incredulity, anger and shame in their eyes. I share their feelings.

So I'm telling you this: you don't believe me? You're accusing me of "doctoring" these pictures?

Fuck you. It doesn't matter what you think. I know what I saw, I know how I felt and I don't care about what you think. I recorded this with my very eyes (and my digital camera) and I'll act accordingly.

This Bayeux "incident" might have a valid and rational explanation (and I hope this post will help finding it. That's its main purpose).

I sincerely hope so.

Because I would hate to see Joe and Tommy's final resting place lacking the basic respect to their eternal memories.

--------------
[As for #19, well… I'm not going to loose my time with such a pathetic slanderous attempt.

Unless these three empty spots were full right before I came or filled right after I left and while you were supposedly there,
Unless you have anything else to prove it other than popping in here, claiming "Ha! I was in Bayeux and I saw them and I don't trust you",

I'm just going to dismiss your comment as one of the weakest argument in defense I ever saw.

I was in Bayeux, I took these pictures. I wasn't alone, I have witnesses. I took other pictures in the same area. I still have my entry ticket to the museum.

Maybe you can show us yours? Surely, you weren't alone? Maybe your boyfriend/girlfriend/stepmother took a nifty picture of your suspicious self posturing in the Museum's park next to one of the… Say, do you remember what kind of vehicle there is in the park?
Do you remember what's written on the monument that's right under the three poles on which you saw the US flag?
Do you remember what were the other lapel pins, in the display case were you saw the US flag?
Do you remember what's right under the rack of the pedestals where you saw the US flag?

Hurry, maybe you can make a phone call and ask the clerks. Oh but… Do you remember at what time does the Museum close its doors?

And in case YOU wonder, I don't trust you as well, since I know you've been trolling around with another famous blogger…]

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 06:46 PM

Good one Fritz.

Posted by: LOL | July 1, 2003 06:49 PM

All you people would think this is an OK way to act about something so powerful as what happened in 1944, is just sad. Show some respect for the dead.

Posted by: Project-Lamer | July 1, 2003 06:51 PM

hmmmmmm... We seem to have forgotten that France is the reason we are a free country now. Without them our revolution against the British governors would have failed.

And I thought we stood for FREE SPEACH. So we are thinking "agree with us or we will hate you!" Very American! Way to keep our image in the gutter.

Posted by: John Mulhim | July 1, 2003 06:51 PM

"And in case YOU wonder, I don't trust you as well, since I know you've been trolling around with another famous blogger…]"

lol... that's using the meaning of the word "famous" a bit loosly there, dont you think?

Posted by: Freddy | July 1, 2003 06:51 PM

This is disgusting! The French are acting like little vindictive children. The are pouting and throwing a tantrum because the poor little babies didn't get what they want and they are picked on by the big bad United States of America. Wah!

Regardless of what is going on today, there were a lot of men who died so the lazy pansy ass French could have their worthless country back. It is a total slap in the face to those men that died there so the French could be free. The lousy bastards should at least acknowledge those who died saving the collective French ass!

There are two things that came from France that have any honor and integrity...the children of American soldiers who were born there and the Statue of Liberty! The rest should be sent to live in the caves of the middle east with their true friends!

Posted by: Joel Meyers | July 1, 2003 06:52 PM

Unbelievable - we Americans can tolerate no dissent from our perfect mission, much less a smattering of potentially childish behavior, while we wallow in the same. I just spent 10 days in France as an average tourist, and encountered zero unfriendliness, and no anti-Americanism whatsoever. I wonder if an average French tourist in NYC could say the same today.

Posted by: Carl | July 1, 2003 06:52 PM

I'm so honored that my uncle gave his life at Normandy, and my Father flew misions on DDay so that a large part of the World could be free of the Nazi rule and terror. I'm less honred to know that the French are finding a way to degrade the men who fought these battles and gave their lives so that their ingrate offspring could find a way to urinate on their graves.

In the future, the French had better choose their battles more wisely. Your history of winning battles without the help of your "allies" is not a storied tradition that you can count on.

Posted by: WW2 | July 1, 2003 06:53 PM

One other thing. People keep saying they must have sold out of American Flags. Now I know my French isn't good, but why wasn't there a sign up stating this fact if it was true? After all, if I was a clerk at said place, I should would get sick of listening to "Do you have any more Amercian Flags" or "Where is the American Flag"

Posted by: Project-Lamer | July 1, 2003 06:55 PM

Yes, I agree this appears very petty and low. But let us remember, the citizens of the USA have done similar things. Looking at the bigger picture, not everyone agreed with the US on the war against Iraq issue. The French were just the most vocal of those opposed. The US started the mudslinging with freedom fries and "We hate France" t-shirts.
And FYI, God has blessed America, land of the rich. Who do they think they are to tell God to bless their country?

Posted by: Adam | July 1, 2003 06:55 PM

have a zoom into the picture folks of the 3 flag poles...there is a "blemish" that lines up perfectly with the tying ropes of the other two flags. The spot is dark where a rope has been photoshopped out. 2pts for sowing the seeds of hate.

Posted by: investigator | July 1, 2003 06:55 PM

I am a graphic artist by trade, and though it IS possible these photos were doctored, I highly doubt it. Look at the details in the leaves that would have to be painted behind the flag if it were digitally removed. I inspected the close-up and there is no evidence of any cloning or hand painting. So either they are genuine, or a highly skilled professional spent a large amount of time and effort to doctor these photos. I find that scenario highly unlikely. Though it's popular to think now that everything is doctored from photos, to video, to taped conversations, as a pofessional who actually does this stuff for a living, it's not nearly as easy as most people like tho think. It's time consuming and expensive. "Wag the Dog" has given people a completely false view of computer manipulation of images. People in my industry laughed at how easy they made it look in that movie to doctor video footage. It's total fantasy. Reality is large groups of highly paid people working on expensive workstations to all hours of the night and STILL not reaching total perfection. Often budgets won't allow for it. In conclusion, I think these photos are real. I think people have a warped idea about digital manipulation in general. And I think the people in charge of the memorial are either petty and childish, or chose a particularily bad moment to clean the all the American items... all at the same time.

Posted by: digital artist | July 1, 2003 06:58 PM

It is unwise to jump to conclusions, especially when you are holding an entire nation to blame for what could have been a prank or demonstration by students. As an American, I am angry at those specific French people who would do such a thing, but as an open minded American, I also know that there are French (although admittedly few) who support the US. I wont fall victim to stereotyping an entire country.

We should not hold this as evience as the opinion of the entire country of france any more than a group of protesters in Berkley protesting the war in Iraq. We both have our embarrassing knuckleheads.

Posted by: Matt Taylor. Dallas, TX | July 1, 2003 07:00 PM

#59 : Nice try.

In case my comment is already forgotten, let me remind the "zooming artists" in the audience that beside the 800 pixels wide versions I added in the update, I can provide the full scale high res 300 dpi shots.

That way, you'll be able to zoom at your heart's content and hopefully make a difference between photo editing and JPEG compression artefacts...

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 07:03 PM

i dont care, cuz i hate france and hope they all die and nothing they do will ever bother me cuz i know they are all just a bunch of assholes. this just proves it further.

Posted by: fuck france | July 1, 2003 07:07 PM

Nice try, investigator, but to me it looks like the clips used for attaching the flag are still on the rope, which has been run up to the top of the flagpole. You will note a "blemish" at the very top of the rope and an identical "blemish" partway down.

You will also note that the rope is not visible on the flagpoles that have flags on them because the wind direction on the flags has pulled the ropes around the poles. The flagless pole has the rope hanging straight down. If he photoshopped the flag out, he must have also photoshopped the rope with the clips in. Very accomplished photoshopping. Incredibly so, one might say.

Posted by: T. Hartin | July 1, 2003 07:09 PM

It is so sad how petty our world has become, but being an optimist, I am willing to think that these items have been removed to prevent their desecration.

Posted by: John Haddock | July 1, 2003 07:09 PM

As a photo-retoucher I am going to have to disagree with #60. It could be VERY easy to doctor these photos. They look a little to sharp on the deges on the flag poles. They could be TWO photos (and they look like it) The Flags and the trees. As for the cork board, there is some slight blurring that you get when you clone a pattern.

Besides, I have been privy to the information that the country of France is planning a HUGE display of compassion and thanks to the American People on the 4th of July of this year. I can't really go into detail, but it is going to be a very poignant display of friendship. We should also remember that without the help of France in our Revoultionary war, England would have crushed the Revolutionaries. France provided much needed money AND warships.

Yes, I am a full-blooded American Patriot. I just believe that any country has the right to choose whether or not to go to war.

Posted by: Stone | July 1, 2003 07:09 PM

It is obviuos that the french are revising history to suit their anti-American sentiments. I am at a complete loss for words, four letter ones excluded.

Posted by: Val Prieto | July 1, 2003 07:12 PM

Gee, Stone, what are they planning, an amphibious assault on Liberty Island?

In 2000 I spent $1500 on French wine. In 2003, nothing. And for the rest of my life, nothing.

Posted by: Richard R | July 1, 2003 07:19 PM

Too many responses on this comment board belie a sense of self-righteousness and superiority that seems to pervade much of the American mindset today. This depresses me to no end. For the record, I am an American, and I do believe the military action led by the U.S. in recent months were the "right thing" to do. I personally am convinced that there was a clear need to deal with the situation.

Having said that, why is it necessary to villify anyone who believes strongly in a position that doesn't happen to line up with ours? There are people in France (and indeed the rest of the world) who looked at the situation, carefully considered the options, and came to a different conclusion that the people and/or government in the U.S. Does that mean that their position is any less tenable than ours? Does it merit them them the label of "traitor" any more than we deserve the label of "arrogant bully"? I fail to see why people can't stand to have others disagree with them without resorting to petty ad hominem attacks. This kind of behavior just seems to suggest a fundamental closed-mindedness that I would like to think is the exception, not the rule, in the American society.

Someone above commented that he/she found it "funny that people would assume the worst" about the situation, where the "worst" was implied to be the assumption that the photos were doctored. This is exceptionally amusing. I look at it differently...I also find it funny, but to me, the assumption of the worst is that this is some sort of gesture sanctioned by the government and indicative of the French hatred for us. To me, it looks like someone decided to express his/her personal opinion in this rather childish manner. Why is everyone "assuming the worst" and trying to find the interpretation that tends to foster these nasty emotions?

Posted by: Al | July 1, 2003 07:19 PM

"We should also remember that without the help of France in our Revoultionary war, England would have crushed the Revolutionaries. France provided much needed money AND warships."

I'm sorry, but some clarification is due here. The French got involved in the Revolutionary war ONLY after the new Americans proved that the they could beat the English on the battlefield. Sometime after the battle of Yorktown I believe. You see, the French hated the English more than we did. As soon as the new Americans became a safe bet, the French joined in.

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 07:20 PM

I have a hard time believing that the museum would be stupid enough to intentionally remove American flags, but then maybe I'm underestimating the idiocy of French anti-Americanism. If that turns out to be true and it got out in the American mainstream media the French could pretty much kiss off any return of American tourists or purchases of French wine.

The French always seem to be worried about the Arab street but they are finding out the hard way that pissing off the American street carries a lot more consequences.

Posted by: Randy R. | July 1, 2003 07:20 PM

I wish I could say that I am surprised. As I write this President Bush is speaking at a re-enlistment celebration on the 30th anniversity of the volunteer military. That's right our country, its citizens and its Constitution are defended by volunteers and most of those who liberated France were volunteers. Can we rightly ask volunteers to once again liberate France if needed? No, that would be a crime against honor of every soldier who fought and who died for the principles held by those brave souls that see a higher purpose for their lives. I saw this coming during the late 60's and it is spreading like a virus. Today the same attitude is metastisizing in Canada. This must be confronted with a disciplined adherence to the time-honored moral values. The sickness of post-modern anti-values cannot live in the light of reason and the world will need guidepost for the day they recognize they are lost. Americans, true Americans and their rational allies around the world will lead them back from the edge of moral armageddon they seem hell-bent on achieving.
Intergalactic Capitalist

Posted by: StarBanker | July 1, 2003 07:20 PM

And Al, its one thing to have differing opinions on a particular subject, its quite another to actively Campaign against a supoosed "ally".

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 07:22 PM

I just wrote the Museum and Mayor's office an email, but I doubt I will get a reply. It's a shame...

Posted by: Aaron | July 1, 2003 07:22 PM

All I can say is I'm glad we didn't do it. It's bad enough when you disagree with the U.S.
leaders. Your labeled anti-american, or bad allies or bad neighbours.
If this was an omission due to some childish tantrum to get back at the Americans, it indeed was stupid and dishonourable. There seems to be a lot of this type of thing going around in the world today. Perhaps it was one person or small group of people trying to make a statement. And if it's one thing the U.S. has taught the rest of the world is to make a statement. Make yourself heard, Stand up for what you beleive in...it doesn't mater if your wrong, it's what you believe in that counts.

Posted by: canuck | July 1, 2003 07:22 PM

#66 Well... t would be VERY easy to doctor these photos poorly. I actually spent some time analysing the paterns in the leaves. As you know, most paint retouching involves sampling paterns from the same photo to preserve color, saturation and exposure. The usual giveaway is when you can recognize patterns duplicated in the same photo. This is what gave away a doctored AP photo taken in Iraq a couple months ago. The compositing of 2 photos is a possibility as well I admit. I suppose the 300dpi version would show evidence of this for sure though unless it were perfect. Either way, I still doubt they were manipulated.

Posted by: digital artist | July 1, 2003 07:23 PM

Welcome to the world, great to have you here? If you've just realized you're living in a world that isn't so black and white that people believe. Someone did probably take down those flags for whatever silly and incognisant reason they may have. However, to merely bias the French on that is just plain silly. If you're going to bias the French you could remark on children smoking and raw meat served as a main course.
Regardless of cultural maladies and misamayisms it's all a PR game. It's claimed that the United States is a country full of greedy businessmen and dirty morally bankrupt politicians, but isn't that the same of all countries? Your standard grade-A Socialist leader *coughdictatorcough* is just the same as a self-serving corporate domineered professional. You can throw all the Nationalistic Patriotic carbunkle out the window because a country's popular image is most often represented by its leaders and whatever stereotypes we can trick our minds into believing because it's so much harder thinking of other people as people and not whatever image we make to keep our heads un-muddled. It's hard enough waking up in the morning without considering everyone in the world at the same level as you.

Posted by: Voltaire | July 1, 2003 07:23 PM

These photos are all fakes. If you look at them close enough you can clearly see that they were made with Adobe PhotoShop. Notice the background shadows and how they forgot to remove them. How ridiculous! Why get Americans pissed off at the French, for amusement?

Posted by: FRAUD | July 1, 2003 07:23 PM

I dunno. maybe if the USAnians hadn't gone to such ridiculous lengths as re-naming their food items to exclude the word 'French' wherever possible, their flag would still be flying at Bayeux.

What goes around, comes around.

Posted by: FrenchFry | July 1, 2003 07:24 PM

This is a move of the most dishonorable degree, to be sure. To omit the American flag in the collective of liberator flags is inexcusable, and whomever was responsible for this action should be ashamed of themselves. However, it's also tiresome to hear my fellow Americans damn the entire country of France and every French citizen in the world because some person or persons took a cheap dig at pushing our patriotic buttons (and succeeding). While I'm pretty sure the French fellows who did this are doing it out of the same patriotic blindness which tells them that because some Capitol Hill monkeys renamed French Fries, all Americans feel this way and should be hated for it, that doesn't mean we have to act in the same manner. Yes, the whole surrender frog thing is funny in a juvenile way, the same as the old recycled jokes for every nationality, but until I see more than a few single Arabic street demonstrations of flag burning, or until the French start taking down American flags from multiple places of political/historical interest, I'm not so quick to write off an entire country/nation and its people as Anti-American bastards, and neither should the people of a democratic, free-thinking, and innocent-til-proven-guilty nation. Don't wield a flamethrower when a sniper rifle will do the job, folks.

Posted by: Ray Sanchez | July 1, 2003 07:26 PM

Ah yes Fench Fry, I can see the equivalance. Renaming fried potatoes and pissing on the graves of thousands of Americans is the same thing. Sure. I can see the similarities.

Posted by: jacitellli | July 1, 2003 07:27 PM

Ray Sanchez, Democratic is hardly the word I'd use for the Untied States. As a citizen I'd clearly like to see more people claim it as a Republic, because by all rights, the only democratic form is local. Republic of Plutocrats I might add. "Anyone can be president" but not everyone does, do they? It costs roughly 100 mil to become president and if you dont have the corporate pocket-change you're likely to sell out to whatever lobbying consumerist/anti-consumerist cause will take you. That's a fact.

***~~Joe Nobody Election Campaign 2004~~***

Posted by: Voltaire | July 1, 2003 07:33 PM

Okay, the pathetic attempts at equivilancy here are more than I can take. If you can't see the difference between the sillyness of freedom fries, and the venal, grotesque pettiness of taking down the flag of dead soldiers who liberated your country, then you're not fit to partake in any discussion on the subject. The goof-ball trolls here, spouting the same absurdities of American Imperialist Wars of Aggression, would be laughable were their venom not so widely shared by the ignorant. "The Americans started it." No, they didn't. "They can dish it out, but they can't take it." Obviously, we can, and have, for too long. Go put on your over-size Che shirt, and curl back into a fetal position under your rock, cretins. And dream your sad, self important fantasies in in private. As for me, I have to go back to work. Another American proclivity that the chattering French resent....

Posted by: idiots | July 1, 2003 07:33 PM

Dear France,

I'm the grandson of Sargent Willard Shadamen, He was one of the first people to set foot on the Normandy Beachhead on June 6th 1944, Im discusted and saddened on how low you can sink to this level. Many AMERICAN troops died on your soil to save it from Facism. This act is purely childish, no matter. I was hoping the 60th year of rememberance would last. I guess your current poltics are all that matter.

The United States will not help you a 2nd time.

Posted by: Tyson Wyatt | July 1, 2003 07:35 PM

Email address for Chirac: http://www.elysee.fr/ang/ecrire/mail_.htm

Posted by: Cyndi | July 1, 2003 07:36 PM

Near Yorktown in Virginia there is a monument near where the so-called "French Trench" was during the siege of the British forces in Yorktown, the position of the Regiment Touraine. It is inscribed

"Ce monument est dédié aux soldats et marins du corps expéditionnaire français morts pour l'independance des Etats-Unis pendant la campagne de Yorktown."

and lists the names of about six hundred French soldiers and sailors killed during the battle of Yorktown and the naval battle of Virginia Capes. To the best of my knowledge, no American has brought shame to his or her country by defacing it.

Nations will disagree, and friendships between them are never permanent, but shouldn't some things be above political rancor? Using the term "Freedom Fries" is stupid, but it is nothing next to the monstrous act of tinkering with historical memorials to brave men who fell in the defense of freedom.

Posted by: SparcVark | July 1, 2003 07:37 PM

Don't you know? Im anti-fascist. And if you dont agree with me, I'll kill you...

Or at least, that's a German exchange student told me. *shrug*

Posted by: Voltaire | July 1, 2003 07:37 PM

To all the folks who seem to equate freedom fries and D-day as equal:
PLEASE tell me how many french layed down thier lives to have the name french fries! French 'bashing' is NOT the same as desecrating graves and rewriting history of D-day to remove the brave men who fought to free the ungreatful French. France has long proved that it loves our help and aid but hates everything else about the USA. Compairing french fries and the lack of respect for the Americans who fought to free France is like comparing apples and rutabagas.

Posted by: Offrenchdecent | July 1, 2003 07:39 PM

As for freedom fries & freedom kisses, I think the French reaction sums it up best -- they don't call them french kisses in France & fries are actually Belgian. But anyway...I think it's incredulous that just because we don't agree on one aspect of foreign policy, the mueseum is willing to essentially spit on our vital participation in a conflict that has absolutely nothing to do with what's going on in the world now. Quite frankly, I am against current American policy in Iraq and never thought we should go in but just as I would never discount the help the French provided us in the American Revolution (without whom we'd be playing soccer & not football, not that I care all that much but you get my point), the mueseum should not be trying to alter the reality of what actually happened during WWII. They may as well say that France never surrendered and was victorious over Hitler at every turn.

Posted by: smartburn | July 1, 2003 07:40 PM

I see there are some Oliver Stone-wannabes here examining the photos like they were the Zapruder film in order to confirm their conspiracy theories. Christ on a stick.

And anyone equating dishonoring the memory of thousands of dead American soldiers with the silly re-naming of a potato product needs a reality check.

I'll give the Museum the benefit of the doubt for now, but they'd better have a damn good explanation why that American flag wasn't flying.

Posted by: Randy R. | July 1, 2003 07:40 PM

Well, technically. The British Empire was essenitally falling apart at the time. Having lost a war such as the Revolutionary War would have simply delayed the inevitable. Considering that the Untied States didn't develop "diplomatic" ability until they developed the gunboat. I'd say that French involvement had little to do with the current state of the US... save for cinnamon fried egg bread.

Posted by: Voltaire | July 1, 2003 07:44 PM

Thank you, Frogman, for bringing these pictures out.

I'm utterly blown away by some of the comments here. We didn't just have a disagreement with the French - they ACTIVELY opposed us and did everything they could to make our efforts more difficult, putting us and our troops further at risk. THAT's why Americans were particularly upset with the French and let them know it in some simple and often petty ways. There were other countries who didn't agree, but the French were *particularly* perfidious, and THAT's why we were pissed.

To compare renaming fried potatoes to what was done at this war memorial (and this isn't the first time) is a new low in self-hate.

Posted by: Solomon | July 1, 2003 07:44 PM

#66, that's the first I've heard. Were they going to let anyone outside of a TV studio know?

Posted by: landes | July 1, 2003 07:45 PM

I find the comment that "Anti-Americanism in France is equally shared among the whole political spectrum" to be quite ironic. I just returned from nine days and five different cities in Germany and encountered ZERO anti-American sentiment. Who did we fight for and who did we fight against? I am particularly incensed as I just happen to be half way through Stephen Ambrose's book D-Day.

Posted by: Stu Crockett | July 1, 2003 07:46 PM

The reason for the missing American items it is a British War Museum and Memorial. The reason for a British War Museum and Memorial is because the British liberated Bayeux, not Americans.

The empty flagpole I do not know what it represents, but as far as I can tell, it has always been empty. That particular display is a memorial to the Sherwood Rangers who were British. Canada was a part of the British Commonwealth at the time and fought with the British, which is the reason for the Canadian Flag.

Posted by: RNW | July 1, 2003 07:50 PM

Remember people: the Memorial Museum of the Battle of Normandy in Bayeux where I shot these pictures is ABOVE ALL a MUSEUM.

NOT a cemetery or a memorial to the dead themselves.

Like I wrote in my first comment, everything looked OK in the other places I visited.

Also, remember that foreign soldier's military cemeteries actually BELONG to their respective country (which is why I can claim I went to the United States without physically leaving France) and there is NO WAY their flag can be removed (unless their own country decides).

And remember I wrote about troubling (yeah, very troubling) coincidences for which we would love to hear an explanation.
At this point, there is no reason to blame any official organism in this country for these… troubling empty spaces where we could possibly expect to see a… flag.

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 07:50 PM

I apologize for the above comment, the French got involved after the battle of Saratoga, not Yorktown.

Link: http://odur.let.rug.nl/~usa/H/1994/ch3_p11.htm

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 07:51 PM

I agree with Matt in # 61. It is most likely that what was seen was the esult of a small number of ungrateful, childish morons. I will also go on to say that we have plenty of them in our country also. The outspoken morons of the world tend to make the news more and also tend to reflect badly upon their country of origin. French jokes, freedom fries, et al. are not as bad as desecrating the memory of those who died. I would be interested to see if we have a memorial to all the Frenchmen that gave their lives in our revolution, and if there is a flag there.

Posted by: Jeff | July 1, 2003 07:52 PM

You still didn't answered why I've seen the American flag when I was at Bayeux this WE.
I personally didn't noticed the lack of the US flag but I guess the US vet I was with would have noticed don't you thing ?

Or did they remove those flags only for you ?

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 07:52 PM

Bayeux was in the Gold section. No US troops there, just UK and Canadian, so why would there be a memorial to the US in Bayeux, if no US troops were involved ? As usual, most of you are getting hot under the collar over nothing.

Posted by: glouton | July 1, 2003 07:53 PM

All the backlash against the removal of US insignia from the normandy memorial is REDICULOUS.

Let's not forget that it was AMERICA that started dumping wine, destroying cheese, and clamoring for the return of the Statue of Liberty (how fitting) when France refused to support our Illegal and Imoral war against Iraq. France actually had the balls to stand up to a long-time ally and tell them they were in the wrong, and we reply with insults and jeers. The French did what any other civilized intelligent enclave would do, wash their hands of us. If being buddies with the United States means you have to unilaterally support American Terrorism and American Imperialism, its obviously not worth it.

Posted by: Patrick Murphy | July 1, 2003 07:54 PM

The French have every right to be mad at Americans. Bunch of simplistic cowboys. Their proper response to Freedom Fries should be to cut off all contact with America and its's citizens.

Save us the trouble.

Posted by: M. Simon | July 1, 2003 07:54 PM

Patrick, read comment #92.

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 07:55 PM

I'm supposed to believe there is a pixel straight flagpole sitting in middle of a bush?

But a very good, compelling try.

10+ for propaganda value and effort.

Posted by: Photo Shopper | July 1, 2003 07:56 PM

Hey FrogBoy, why didn't you GO UP AND ASK why the American Flag items were missing? Did anyone already ask this?? (I might have missed it) Seems like it would have been the best thing to do.. confront the people on the reason for the omission. I have a hard time drawing any conclusions from the 'evidence' that you have privided. To me, it is nothing more than what you have described... A COINCEDENCE. Regardless of how much anti-France or anti-USA sentiment there might be, I find it hard to believe that a government facility would stoop to such levels. The general public renaming French Fries...etc.. I can see, but something that is a memorial or a museum... I don't see that happening. Possibly the items were stolen... maybe defaced... maybe bought up by some anti-US people to burn or deface... maybe it was a popular time of year for American tourists to be in the area.. sold out... who knows. All the 'evidence' is strictly circumstantial in my opinion. I would have to say that THIS IS A FREE COUNTRY... similarly, we SHOULD LET OTHER COUNTRIES BE FREE AS WELL. We're free to badmouth the French for their behavior and they are free to badmouth us. The REAL tragedy is that it's probably a minority of MORONS, both AMERICAN and FRENCH, that give EVERYONE a bad name. The few idiots who change french fries to freedom fries are the same type of morons who are anti-American French people. They probably even share the same moron genes.

Posted by: Mr. Bob Dobalita | July 1, 2003 08:00 PM

Not putting your flag up? Heinous act.

Blowing up a weak and feeble country, killing and maiming thousands for reasons that were fabricated by your leaders? Ok and justified.

Maybe that's why your flag is not up. It's too bad, because the States could do so much good in the world. I just wish your leaders would comply.

Posted by: Ben Franklin | July 1, 2003 08:00 PM

If this really is some sort of studied insult, then it's truly disgusting.

One can't help feeling that veterans, both alive or dead, have been politicised enough. First, they are used to put some sort of silly moral obligation upon the French to help the US create another generation of veterans, with all the horror that entails. Then they are used as a vehicle for some sort of silly anti-americanism. Both are truly sad and wrong things.

Posted by: alasdair | July 1, 2003 08:00 PM

This is just poor. If they hate us so much why not stop any and all exports to our country? I am sure that would cause some outrage there. Hope Lance Armstrong destroys the competition during the tour de france and waves ole glory high in the sky when he does.

Posted by: Joe | July 1, 2003 08:01 PM

hey simon -- there's nothing we'd like more. take frigging quebec with you while you're at it. ignorant twit.

Posted by: john lichtenberg | July 1, 2003 08:02 PM

Not a bad photoshop job of erasing the US flag/pin/pole, but not a good one either.

Posted by: Mbrahm | July 1, 2003 08:02 PM

Wonder what will happen when France finds itself in the same situation as Israel?
Considering, in Islam, the world is Allahs land and needs to be "liberated" for Allah.
I think France is first on the list in the western world.
Easy target, ya know.(and now that there is a rift between America and France, its even an easier target)
Will they ask America for help when the suicide bombs start to explode in France?
Or will they try to hide it, as they do the rapes and anti-semitic crimes done by islamists?
Chirac--the new dictator.And all the French citizens are just falling into line...while Jihad marches and knocks on their door.

Posted by: TS | July 1, 2003 08:03 PM

WOW! a photoshop expert... nice work; now can you make this site go away? I dont believe this site, it just shows how easy it is to get you cowboys fired up.

In anycase do you all think its ok for Americans to be anti-French but the French cannot be anti-American. That with us or against us stuff just upset people.

You get what you sow, if you spit in their faces then they have every right to spit back.

Posted by: wumpscut | July 1, 2003 08:03 PM

The French became involved in the American Revolution after Burgoyne's surrender at Saratoga. Interestingly,all this talk of "traitors" reminds me of the fact that at Bemis Heights and Saratoga another traitor, Benedict Arnold, proved himself to be the premire American field commander in the Revolution. However, France didn't enter the war for altruistic reasons. They felt that by being on the winning side against England they might be able to wrangle part of their lost colony (Quebec) back during the peace negotiations.

As for the missing flags, I'd rather have them missing then desecrated. Doesn't anyone remember the spray painted memorial in northern France? The one with the words written in French tellihng the British and American to come take their dead who were, by being buried there, polluting the country? I imagine the authorities removed the flags and pins to keep the place from being vandalized by those folks whose hatred out runs their sense of decency.

At least I hope so.

Posted by: Terry A. Hoover | July 1, 2003 08:05 PM

#95: Wrong. This is a Museum of the Battle of Normandy. Last time I checked, the US forces were actively participating. The Bocage means something to you?
You can see items from both the US and British-Canadian sector inside the museum.

#99: If you keep ignoring my answers, you can wait a bit longer. Like the next decade for instance.
Check #49 and let's see what you can show us, instead of recursively posting unverifiable claims.

#100: Please READ what I write and FOLLOW the links I provide. This is about a museum dedicated to the Battle of Normandy. Get the point?

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 08:06 PM

These pictures look SO photoshoped it is ugly...
Pathetic attempt for more descrimination against the French...

Wootah

Posted by: Wootah | July 1, 2003 08:06 PM

This memorial is part of a group of memorials in Normandy devoted to various aspects of D-Day and its aftermath including an Omaha Beach Memorial Museum which is dedicated primarily to the American effort. The sector around Bayeux was the sector manned by commonwealth forces -- nearby is the commonwealth cemetery -- just as the American cemetery is near the Omaha Beach Memorial Museum. The prominence of different flags at different memorials is perfectly legitimate. Patriotic correctness is starting to become as tedious as political correctness.

Posted by: Bryan Sachse | July 1, 2003 08:07 PM

Btw did you visit La Cambe ?
A military graveyard without ANY american flag should be very attractive for you no?

I can't say more about the Bayeux museu as I spend only 1/2 hour in this place but I'm still troubled I didn't notice something that big

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 08:07 PM

These pictures have been edited, doctored or whatever you call it. Don't sweat it folks. The French are pathetic but not THAT Pathetic.

Posted by: Uncle Sam | July 1, 2003 08:08 PM

Um, so let me get this straight, your telling me that taking the memorial down, of U.S. soldiers who spilt there blood to liberate Europe, is less important, than French whine? *sigh* Some people need to get a freaking brain

And get a life

Posted by: Dusty T. | July 1, 2003 08:11 PM

I'm not N° 99 I used my real name to post.
And my comment are as verifiable as your don't you think ?

Btw in your comment you say this : " And in case YOU wonder, I don't trust you as well, since I know you've been trolling around with another famous blogger…]"

I would be very pleased to know when were and providing me a link would be very handy.

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 08:12 PM

jacitell, why compare a literal (renaming French Fries) with a figurative ("pissing on the graves..") ? it just makes you look like an idiot.

That said, there is a difference, but it's only one of degree. This Bayeux action was not governmental (at least, not nationally so), unlike the renaming of French Fries, which was undertaken by the US congress.

The point remains. If the US cannot take an insult against their nation and countrymen, maybe they should not be so quick to dish one out.

Posted by: FrenchFry | July 1, 2003 08:12 PM

#117:
I can't say more about the Bayeux museu as I spend only 1/2 hour in this place but I'm still troubled I didn't notice something that big

Troubling indeed. Particularly when the average visit lasts TWO HOURS.

As written on the front check-out.

Did you miss that sign as well?

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 08:12 PM

I said it was an unforgivable, shameful act to omit the American flag, you monkeyfucks who replied to that. Take it in context and read someone else's post before you fly off your shitters to post yet another knee-jerk overly sentimental patriotic response. I didn't say it was the same thing, I said it came from the same source.

Voltaire - there is no perfect form of government that can be perfectly implemented. We pledge allegiance to a republic, and we're democractic in spirit. We based most of our government off the ancient Greek concept of democracy, and in spirit, we the people should decide our fate, just like the founding fathers wanted to begin with. Yes, there are many truer concepts that can be applied to America than calling it a democracy, and a plutocracy might very well fit the bill, as well as capitalism.

I'm a veteran of the U.S. military. I served my time and was honorably discharged. I love my country, and I'm patriotic. I see our flag as a symbol of our greatness, and would dearly like to punish those who tread on it. I'm all for hanging the people responsible for this farce upside down from the flagpole they left empty. I'd also like to beat the shit out of the assholes who decorate their houses like a fucking red, white, and blue circus in an act of overzealous, misguided patriotism, too. That's my point. Punish the guilty, preserve the innocent. That's what patriotism is about. That's what our great-grandfathers "MilTitle. 'SoldierName'" died for. Condemning an entire country for the actions of a few assholes who deserve our hate and rage, is like shooting a person in the head to cure them of melanoma. That's my point, get it right.

Posted by: Ray Sanchez | July 1, 2003 08:13 PM

To give some perspective, I live about five miles from Yorktown National Battlefield, and the flags demarking the American, British, and French positions still fly. We are not trying to hide the fact that France was our benefactor when we needed military support, as Bayeux seems to be doing.

There may well be a reasonable explanation for this, but I cannot think of one that fits within the scope of reason and logic, and that also survives the swift cut of Occam's Razor.

Posted by: J. Fielek | July 1, 2003 08:16 PM

Re: post 41

That's "Axis of Weasels".

HTH


spook

Posted by: spookycc | July 1, 2003 08:17 PM

Hey Ray, do your buddies call you 'dirty'??? Hehe.. anyways, I would have to agree with you.

Posted by: Mr. Bob Dobalita | July 1, 2003 08:17 PM

The "empty space" is clearly photoshopped.. You can clearly see that the so called "empty space" is much cleaner than the other rusty looking spaces.. if it weren't photoshoped, then that "blank space" would be much dirtier or rustier than it is..

Posted by: Mindspin | July 1, 2003 08:17 PM

126 'Bob' = Unfortunately, yes. Who doesn't have friends who kid them? :)

Posted by: Ray Sanchez | July 1, 2003 08:20 PM

Bryan Sachse wrote:


This memorial is part of a group of memorials in Normandy devoted to various aspects of D-Day and its aftermath including an Omaha Beach Memorial Museum which is dedicated primarily to the American effort. The sector around Bayeux was the sector manned by commonwealth forces -- nearby is the commonwealth cemetery -- just as the American cemetery is near the Omaha Beach Memorial Museum. The prominence of different flags at different memorials is perfectly legitimate.

Prominence I could understand, such as setting the British flag prominently at the British beaches, the Canadian at the Canadian Beach, etc. That honors the men who landed and died there at that particular beach.

But the complete absence of the American Flag, with the presence of the other three? And a conspicuous hole where it once flew? That's an insult.

Posted by: J. Fielek | July 1, 2003 08:21 PM

Would someone please explain to the "HEY, AMERICA STARTED IT" crowd that anti-Americanism in France has been around since, oh, about May 1, 1945? Hardly a new development; it's just not flying below the radar anymore, and Americans are no longer dismissing it as a "cultural misunderstanding."

Posted by: BAW | July 1, 2003 08:22 PM

Next time someone, Brits or us Krauts, invades France to kick their sorry asses, will you please, please stay the hell out and mind your own business. Better yet, join us. -- Fired by Fritz @ July 1, 2003 06:27 PM

Now there's an idea worth considering! Let's all three do it. It would be selfish of one of us to have all the fun. Then we can draw straws. The loser that draws the short straw has to keep France. :)

Posted by: Jason | July 1, 2003 08:25 PM

To the nitwits claiming that the US Congress renamed the French fries: do you really believe that Congress is passing Acts concerning the popular naming of fried potatotes? It was a silly gesture started by a small local restaurant in North Carolina and a couple of Congressman took it up and talked the people running the Congressional cafeteria into changing a cafeteria sign to read Freedom fries. Congress never held a vote on changing the name. Some of you rubes will believe anything.

Posted by: Randy R. | July 1, 2003 08:27 PM

Hey hey HEY!

Soccer rules. Just check out the last World Cup:

USA: Quarterfinals
France: Knocked out in group stage, no wins. :D

Posted by: AVO | July 1, 2003 08:27 PM

Perhaps Americans should celebrate Bastille Day as de Sade Day. True he was taken out of the prison 12 days before it was attacked but what is a fortnight among friends?

What could be truer to French history? France: the country that enjoys it's self inflicted wounds.

Posted by: M. Simon | July 1, 2003 08:28 PM

Regardless if you agree with a friendly nations act(s) or not, if they are to remain on that friendly list you don't go about begging others to join in blocking those acts(our stupid move to get UN permission for war---the UN's permission?) France wiped out most if not all of its goodwill w/this nation by its obvious anti-American stance...other nations disagreed with us but only France went that extra mile trying to appease the Arab and so called non aligned Third World by blocking EVERY move we tried prior to war...

Posted by: Chuck | July 1, 2003 08:28 PM

France ... a country that hasn't proven itself on the world stage since Napoleon Bonaparte. If the country was sucked into the core of the Earth, I doubt the rest of the world would notice or care.

Posted by: Lazlo | July 1, 2003 08:30 PM

Let us be honest. American contributions to the second World War were minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential. Although it is quite common for Americans to believe that they alone saved the world during both world wars, the facts portray a different story. It certainly cannot come as a shock to Americans that the strong-arm tactics employed by the Bush administration are pushing friends away. Let the flag thing go and focus on the future instead of the past.

Posted by: Jason | July 1, 2003 08:36 PM

"Let us be honest. American contributions to the second World War were minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential."

WTF?

Frnch fry, thats exactly my point, the two actions ARE different. They are not comparible. And you might want to check out that US Congress allagation a little closer.

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 08:39 PM

An important point to the defenders of French policy. There is a huge difference between disagreeing with the US on policy and actively providing support and aid for our enemies. That is what really pissed off most Americans. As far as "freedom of speech" goes, it is just that - the freedom to say virtually anything you like in public (very few specific exceptions) without government interference. The right to dissent does not imply that the audience must agree or even tolerate your opinion. Legally, they just can't do anything about it. Barring a constitutional amendment, a Frenchman could come to the US and burn the American flag or denounce the President across the street from the White House and the police are legally obligated to protect him.

Yes, the 18th century French will be remembered (and respected) for the vital assistance they gave during our Revolution. Though the people responsible for that assistance were later slaughtered in the name of Freedom, Equality and Fraternity.

Posted by: Timothy Kooney | July 1, 2003 08:40 PM

Jason,

Why the revisionism? The United States had the second-largest manpower contribution to the allied forces, after only the USSR, which was being invaded and mobilized whatever they had. "Minimal at best"? Do you really believe this?

Whatever you think of current US policy, you do your cause no good by distorting the past.

Posted by: SparcVark | July 1, 2003 08:41 PM

Jason, surely you must be kidding.

Else, stop reading 30 years old Russian history books, please.

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 08:42 PM

Revisionism indeed. Pehaps Jason would like to inform us on how France handled itself during that war?

Perhaps in Jason's world the Maginot line was a good idea...

Posted by: Sean | July 1, 2003 08:44 PM

For the Real French, I am very very sorry. For the Vichy French Fuck you and your NAZI masters. There is a vast difference between being snippy ( freedom fries) and insulting the dead( the missing flags) especialy if those dead, died to save you. I live in Maine where over half the population is French (Norman) and they spit when they speak of the Parisians.

Posted by: Charlie Greene | July 1, 2003 08:44 PM

Hey, I was also just in Normandy this weekend and stayed in Bayeux. Was pleasantly surprised by the number of US flags everywhere, including on the banners of villages as well as at the beaches. No doubt the Bayeux museum authorities have their own issues, but it wasn't like that anywhere else.

The beaches and surrounding villages and cemeteries are powerful and disturbing places to visit, too, as reminders of the level of sacrifice which had to be paid for freedom.

Patrick, London/ NYC

Posted by: Patrick Meade | July 1, 2003 08:45 PM

Quelques gens ont dit que le drapeau Americain a eté omis (j'espêre que c'est le mot) parce que Bayeux est presque la plage JUNO, qui n'etait attaqué que par les Anglais et Canadiens. Est-ce que c'est possible qu'ils ont droit?

Posted by: Ed | July 1, 2003 08:47 PM

Why should I spend 2 hour in a place which is almost a pee stop in a pretty charged day ?

Again would be kind enought to answer this simple question :
" And in case YOU wonder, I don't trust you as well, since I know you've been trolling around with another famous blogger…]"

I would be very pleased to know when were and providing me a link would be very handy

And call me ignorant but I don't know what a blogger is ... I landed on your site accidently and even if I don't plan to come back I would like to see my simple question answered.

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 08:47 PM

Bravo to France...it shows by its actions that it has little tolerance for facism of any type, whether the overt facism of 1944 Nazi Germany or the insidious facism of 2003 America.

Posted by: Robert | July 1, 2003 08:48 PM

In the flagpole picture, select the upper-right quadrant of the image (French flag and sky), and equalize it. You'll see that the sky consists of a single colour with some rectangular intersects. A CCD's noise floor is too high to produce large areas of single-colour, and the rectangles aren't JPEG noise - JPEG acts on 3x3 pixel grids. This image has certainly been doctored.

The centre flagpole is of a different texture than the other two (more reflections), and is apparently growing out of a mature bush, which means nobody could get close enough to raise or lower the flag.

There is no halyard on the pole, which I would expect to be there if a flag had recently been flying.

This image (http://www.normandie44lamemoire.com/les%20monuments/images%20monuments/bayeuxmonu.jpg) taken from a slightly different angle, suggests that the flagpole has been empty for some time, and that only GB and French flags are present. None of the other nations involved in the Normandy Landings are represented. This (http://www.normandie44lamemoire.com/les%20monuments/images%20monuments/bayeuxstele2.jpg) is the monument below the empty flagpole. I would be grateful to anyone who could translate it; I suspect it refers to a specific engagement.

The podium image shows no evidence of tampering. However, it's a gift shop and the flags are not behind glass. It would be very simple to remove the flag from its stand then take the picture. Why would a museum employee, when removing a flag from display, leave an empty stand?

The badge image shows no evidence of tampering.

None of the images contain EXIF headers, which are added by almost all digital cameras. This suggests that the images have passed through a photo-editing suite.

All of the images are non-standard sizes. I would want to see the allegedly-original images before passing judgement, but these have certainly been editied, possibly maliciously.

Viewing the rest of the site suggests that this guy really has an axe to grind about France.

From all this I conclude that all pro-war individuals are liars, and that the plural of "anecdote" is "proof".

Posted by: qwe | July 1, 2003 08:49 PM

Translation for Ed - "Some people say that the American flag was left out. That is because Bayeux is close to Juno which was attacked by the British and the Canadians. Is it possible it is right to exclude the American flag?

Further to my point regarding American involvement. America did send many soldiers and unfortunately many of them did lose their lives for the sake of freedom in Europe. However, for both wars, America was one of the last western nations involved and thousands upon thousands of other soldiers had already been lost in the defence of Europe, Canadians and Russians for example. For the record, I am American.

Posted by: Jason | July 1, 2003 08:55 PM

Hey number 47, the French (at least the left-wing bastards) were anti-american long before Americans even thought of being anti-french. A farmer named José Bové became famous when he tore down a McDonald's in 1999 because he hates American "junk" food. And more recently, the Star Spangled Banner was booed at the Soccor Confederation Cup tournament in......... France ! Now that's childish !

Posted by: David | July 1, 2003 08:55 PM

Cheese eating surrender monkeys.

The best of France died in the 1914 and the dregs of their society marches on. Not only do they have to worry about the Germans taking over their country without the US backing them up, they need to worry about Finland, Iceland, Bulgaria, and Kuwait. If its a weekend or holiday the Girl Scout Troop 7 coming home from archery practice stands a very good chance of taking and holding Paris. As for America oweing its freedom from England to France, what a crock of sh*t. France looked at the Revolutionary War as a chance to back bite England when she wasn't looking. As soon as the Americans made peace the French got their arses kicked AGAIN! France is still pissing and moaning because the US wouldn't help them recolonize Vietnam in the 50s. Eisenhower said once every ten years was enough.

Posted by: dhermesc | July 1, 2003 08:59 PM

Let us be honest. American contributions to the second World War were minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential.

Ahem.
Boeing B-17 Fortress
North American B-25 Mitchell
North American P-51 Mustang (A-36 Mustang to the boys in the RAF)

I'd say the United States' contribution to the war (even excepting the Pacific theater as we are doing) were quite considerable. US troops landed at Normandy on two of five beaches. Could the Allies have penetrated Europe with only 3/5 the force they had? Perhaps, but I'd have put more money on the defenders in that case.

I think Great Britain and the US have a much closer relationship politically, and have since D-Day because our boys were dying with theirs on D-Day. It's harder to forget when someone makes a sacrifice with you than when they make one for you.

Posted by: John Jay | July 1, 2003 09:00 PM

Where the pictures doctored with swatiskas at the graves too?
I'd like to say to any French people here, that, as an American, I dont go around bashing French people, I was surprised that they did not want to try bring freedom to Iraq and therefore, possibly bring freedom to the middle east, as a way to combat the world wide Jihad that is happening, whether we want to admit it's happening or not.
You see...America was attacked..9/11...Americans feel an urgent awareness of the Jihad, and from what I hear is happening in France, France should be alarmed too, to say the least.
Yet it seemed to me, that French people cared more about bashing America and going against any policy(good or bad) just for the sake of defying America.
Meanwhile, there is a serious terrorist problem ALL OVER THE WORLD.
It was, to me, as if France was our friend after 9/11...but then when America actually wanted to do something about the Jihad, then all of a sudden America is a bully....so what kind of friendship is that?
You love us when we die? after 9/11..but hate us when we defend ourselves, and the rest of the world too, because defeating the Jihad is not just for America, it is a worldwide Jihad.
So you have to understand, we were viciosly attacked, we are not gonna lay down and take it..our enemy is ruthless, and if we show weakness..well the free world is through!
France was not attacked on 9/11..and feels differently, I understand that, I think that if it would have been you that was attacked and lost 3,000 innocent people, America would have been there for you, to defeat this scourge of an enemy...but when it came down to it being the other way around, Americans looked at french government behavior as, oh well...so what, you had a bunch of people get killed by Jihad on your soil...too bad.So sad.
And well..if it was your countrymen attacked in the way we were, and as evidenced by your strong French unity and national pride, you would have taken offense if you asked America to help you and we defied you every step of the way.
As if French lives didnt really matter.And it didnt matter if it happened again...To me it was almost as if the French were saying America got what it deserved, and well, yes Americans took offense,your damn right we did....the same way that if in the future France gets attacked by Islamists, and America sits by and wont help, and actually goes to other countries to tell them not to help France..I would think that the French would be highly upset and feel that we wanted them to be hurt.
And if we did that, you would be right...if you guys were devastatingly attacked as we were, and America didnt go to help you, I feel that American citizens would not be supportive of that stance.
See, America feels that we(the free world) are in this together...Jihad is a threat to all of us, not to mention the oppression in Islamic lands of muslims is horrendous and has no place in the the 21st century! ...so when France was not for bringing freedom to the middle east(which is what the iraq war was really all about if you see the big picture) then we were like well ok, France has its reasons not to be involved, thats cool, but when you openly defied us by going to other countries and having people like Mugabe and Arafat to France as admirable leaders, that stunned us!
How can you not want to fight this evil Jihad? How can you not want muslims to be free from this scourge of oppression? It makes no sense to me...unless France actually agrees with the oppression and Jihad, which would mean you are our enemy.
So, I think after that, American's have a problem figuring out just exactly who's side you are on....freedom and justice, or oppression and murder?
Does France think its ok that so many muslims are oppressed and taught to hate and kill and are bringing that philosophy to the ends of the earth, violently?
Is France willing to sacrifice so many many lives and souls for the luxury of hating America?
Does France ignore the worldwide Jihad that is taking place? by way of critiscising America?
Does that make you feel safe?
I would like tell you, you are not safe from Islamic Jihad, lesser and greater, and if we(the free world) do not band together and quit the petty criticising, we may find our selves in very dire circumstances.
Americas woke up to the threat on 9/11, and I hope that the rest of the free world, would go and read the Quran, read the Hadith that tells about muhammeds life and actions, look at the bloody borders of Islam in Africa, Indonesia, Phillipines, Chechnya etc....and realise these "freedom fighters" are not fighting for freedom of anything except submission to Allah...look at your countries and see what the Islamic groups are lobbying the governments for, and the lies they tell about Islam being a religion of peace...speak out for those who cannot..who are under the submission of Allah, and will be killed if they speak out.Or try to convert.
And wake up to what is happening in the world.
And see the big picture of what America is trying to do in the world.
Its not just about Iraq's WMD...that was a way for the world to get involved, and to bring freedom to the Middle East...which is the only way to defeat the Jihad, to bring a voice to all those trapped who have no voice, for fear of death.
Sure you will hear wonderful things about Islam in the west...do you think they give passports to people against Islam, or who may be iffy on the subject...no they give them to hardcore (lesser or greater) Jihadists.
I for one will fight this scourge on humanity, and will not bow to the submission of Allah and Muhammed, I will fight this to the death, as will my fellow Americans...just as we fought Naziism as partners of the free world.
In this war, "united we stand divided we fall" applies not only to America, but to the rest of the world who holds freedom dear.
Jihad is here to stay, and we must fight it, unless we think the idea of submission to Allah is acceptable...because they will not stop, they will not, unless we stop them.
You can not reason with them, only submit.
And when nukes and bio and chem weapons enter the picture, it will be too late, you will submit or die.
And when our countries pass laws making it a hate crime to criticise(tell the truth) about Islam...then we will be in such trouble.
Its coming...look and see.


Posted by: TS | July 1, 2003 09:00 PM

Aha.

So, being late to declare war equals a contribution that was "minimal at best"? I recommend you educate yourself on what British leaders at the time, say. . . Winston Churchill, thought of American involvement. Hint: he thought it was awfully important.

At the time of both wars, the USA was an isolationist country where there was a strong body of opinion against getting involved in European wars, of which there had been a semi-constant stream dating back to the fringes of recorded history.

Jason, you're not doing the reputation of the American educational system any favors. Please clarify more instead of posting inflammatory statements, like "minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential" when you have absolutely nothing with which to back them up.

Posted by: SparcVark | July 1, 2003 09:00 PM

Jason:

Was there a different invasion of Europe, liberation of France, and defeat of Germany and Italy that Americans missed because of our "late" entry?

Your claim that the American contribution to the war effort was "mostly irrelevant" is idiotic. You need to crack a history book, son.

Posted by: Randy R. | July 1, 2003 09:03 PM

The French can dump Budweiser and boycott Mc Donalds and the Americans can dump French wine and rename potatoes. All is fair and trivial.
BUT ...
Defacing a grave or memorial is beyond comparison. You cannot get any further devoid of morals and decency. I can offer only one explanation - the extreem level of France's insecurity and utter jealousy has reached new levels.

Posted by: Bryan | July 1, 2003 09:05 PM

If only Jason believed in the "Hollywood" spin on WWII, perhaps he wouldn't stir up such rantings from his fellow red neck American cousins... give us a break! The American s held up the occupation of Berlin, thereby allow the communists to split the country in half.

Posted by: Gary | July 1, 2003 09:10 PM

Hey #150, what about all of the times when Americans have booed O! Canada at sporting events? Oh, that's right, it's allowed, because we're the ones doing it.

Posted by: Jon | July 1, 2003 09:16 PM

To all:

Wether the pictures are authentic or not, the fact is, there is a lot of animosity between the French and the US. All of which was stirred up by our recent efforts in liberating a country who's cries...no one heard. We heard them loud and clear in the streets of Baghdad. Personally being a U.S. Marine, I am proud and willing to fight for the rights of all men. No matter what country you are from. I have been to France on several occasions, and yes, I was spit on, called "ugly American", and told to go home. Those(emphasis on those individuals) French people left a sour taste in my mouth. However, I cannot hate an entire country for the anti-american views. Hate is a powerful word, people. Many American's did die for France's freedom, true. But we musn't breed hate in America. We are better than that. My fellow American's...we have to start realizing that in order for us to rid the world of terrorism, we must first dispell the hate. That goes for the French as well, and everyone else who enjoys simply living on this planet.

Posted by: Sergeant USMC | July 1, 2003 09:19 PM

Let us be honest. American contributions to the second World War were minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential. Although it is quite common for Americans to believe that they alone saved the world during both world wars, the facts portray a different story.--Jason

Uh huh. By the end of '41 the French had surrendered, naturally, the Brits were pretty hemmed in by the Germans, and a good part of the Soviet Union was under German control. After the US was dragged into WWII by the Japanese, things began to change as the US poured money, personnel, material and other support into the war effort.

Perhaps effete snobs like "Jason" who claims to be American, but spells "defense" as "defence", would like to minimize the US contribution, but the crosses and Stars of David in the US cemetaries in Europe and the Pacific tell a different story. It's unfortunate that the current crop of Eurotrash forgets that.

Posted by: Lazlo | July 1, 2003 09:21 PM

The American s held up the occupation of Berlin, thereby allow the communists to split the country in half.

The same Americans who conducted daylight bombing raids over Berlin to effectively cripple the Nazis' war production? I think the split was innevitible. After all, to the victor goes the spoils. Obviously Russia wanted a piece of the victory pie, and half of Germany was what they got.

We did have some shrewd generals who wanted to ally with the Germans as soon as they surrendered and carry on the war to push into Russia and put an end to the Communist state. By that time everyone was just ready for the war to be over though.

Posted by: John Jay | July 1, 2003 09:21 PM

158

don't forget the brilliant behaviour of the American public towards European players at the previous Ryder Cup

Based on all the posts, we can take for granted that dissidentfrogman has lost his credibility, by obviously photoshopping the pics or by forgetting to have the official comment of the Bagneux mayor. All the dissidentfrogman's hate messages have now zero value

Posted by: glouton | July 1, 2003 09:22 PM

In the flagpole picture, select the upper-right quadrant of the image (French flag and sky), and equalize it. You'll see that the sky consists of a single colour with some rectangular intersects. A CCD's noise floor is too high to produce large areas of single-colour, and the rectangles aren't JPEG noise - JPEG acts on 3x3 pixel grids. This image has certainly been doctored.

Cool stuff. The tech talk is always oh so impressive. Do you base your sharp analysis on the high res version I just posted, or did you just zoomed the small, weight optimized ones I initially posted?
Just curious.

The centre flagpole is of a different texture than the other two (more reflections), and is apparently growing out of a mature bush, which means nobody could get close enough to raise or lower the flag.

Huh? You mean a pole in the open, at a different position in space than another one does not reflect daylight exactly the same and… That is suspect?

As for the bush and "nobody could get close enough"… Well, maybe you should wait until you can actually see the ground?

Anyway, that remark is interesting, considering your next “expertise”:

There is no halyard on the pole, which I would expect to be there if a flag had recently been flying.
This image (http://www.normandie44lamemoire.com/les%20monuments/images%20monuments/bayeuxmonu.jpg) taken from a slightly different angle, suggests that the flagpole has been empty for some time, and that only GB and French flags are present. None of the other nations involved in the Normandy Landings are represented.

OK, let me put that straight:
First, my picture has, in your own words “certainly been doctored” (the pole reflections, the mature bush, etc.).
But now, you come up with another picture of the same spot that shows… an empty pole just like mine and you’re telling us… What are you telling us exactly?
Thanks for finding on the vast Internet another image that looks exactly the same as mine… Say, you’re sure this one wasn’t doctored either?

This (http://www.normandie44lamemoire.com/les%20monuments/images%20monuments/bayeuxstele2.jpg) is the monument below the empty flagpole. I would be grateful to anyone who could translate it; I suspect it refers to a specific engagement.

This monument commemorates the liberation of Bayeux, the first French town liberated in 1944.

The podium image shows no evidence of tampering. However, it's a gift shop and the flags are not behind glass. It would be very simple to remove the flag from its stand then take the picture. Why would a museum employee, when removing a flag from display, leave an empty stand?

Yes, that’s what I’m wondering as well.

The badge image shows no evidence of tampering.

You mean not like this pole thing right? I mean MINE of course. Not the one you found.

None of the images contain EXIF headers, which are added by almost all digital cameras. This suggests that the images have passed through a photo-editing suite.
All of the images are non-standard sizes. I would want to see the allegedly-original images before passing judgement, but these have certainly been editied, possibly maliciously.

There are other information on these pictures indeed. The kind I don’t want to display on the Internet.
Got a problem with that? Too bad.

Viewing the rest of the site suggests that this guy really has an axe to grind about France.

Wrong. But there’s a large part of the French intelligentsia with which I strongly disagree.

From all this I conclude that all pro-war individuals are liars, and that the plural of "anecdote" is "proof".

Wow. That was a brilliant demonstration that leads you to a brilliant conclusion. Let’s learn another word: generalization.

It’s not a very nice word, when applied to people you know.

Thanks anyway for finding this other picture. We shall remind the URL you were kind enough to provide:
http://www.normandie44lamemoire.com/les%20monuments/images%20monuments/bayeuxmonu.jpg

Now maybe you could find the other two?

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 09:23 PM

past past history....look the whole point should be people who have and love freedom fight and die for it, for thier own countries and other countries who love freedom too...American soldiers died in Europe fighting for other countries.
Why? because we fight for freedom...and so do other countries who love freedom.
Americans just cant understand why France is not willing to fight for their(and the worlds) freedom now.
Political correctness?
Unthinkable to be on the side of America?
France sees no threat of Jihad?
I, as an American, really dont understand the reasons.
But it seems most likely, it is all about not being on America's side, no matter if we are on the side of good, as evidenced by France's support of Arafat and Hamas Mugabe, Saddam...2/3rds of the French wanted Saddam to win????? That is disgraceful...and totally shocking...are you guys being brainwashed by the politically correct and the islamic leaders?
I mean how in the world can you want Saddam to win?
Regardless of whether you thought the war was right or wrong...I mean cmon..did you see how he lived and treated his people?
You wanted him to continue that just so you could defy America?
That pretty much explains France's position I suppose.
Defy America, whether what they are doing is good or bad.
Thats how France makes its decisions? Whatever America is for, we are against?
Wow.

Posted by: ts | July 1, 2003 09:23 PM

159: "I was spit on, called "ugly American", and told to go home" --> I think you're trolling, no one in France would spit on someone because he has a given nationality. Or maybe you asked for it.

There are many more anti-French in the US than anti-Americans in France

Posted by: glouton | July 1, 2003 09:26 PM

The only reason why the Americans conducted daytime air raids on Germany was because they couldn't hit the the broad side of a bunker in a night time raid...that kind of precision bombing was left to the RAF.

Posted by: Gary | July 1, 2003 09:26 PM

WTG ! Sergeant USMC (or Number 150 as you like to use number here I don't understand why anyway ...)

Some wyse words in a pretty hatred debate (if it's a debate as no one try to listen the other ... me included :p)

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 09:26 PM

fek .. cant count correctly it was for 159 :)

Posted by: Frédéric de Jager | July 1, 2003 09:28 PM

There are many more anti-French in the US than anti-Americans in France

And you know this how? Any evidence of this? How many French memorials have been desicrated in the US? Aww yes, lets just say it , well it must be true.

Posted by: jacitelli | July 1, 2003 09:29 PM

Glouton...do not assume. You know what they say when you assume...

Posted by: Sergeant USMC | July 1, 2003 09:29 PM

So, children, what have we learned today?

These photos were and werent doctored.

France is right and wrong.
The US is right and wrong.

If you support France, you are an un-patriotic asshole and a hero.
If you support the US, you are a patriot and a coward.

We know why the flags are missing and we dont know why they are.

We've indentified that most people are not capable of anything coming close to a clear, concise, relevant argument, instead, basing any and all 'logic' on sentiments and emotions.

If the French did take down the flags, that was pretty Crass.
But so are American sentiments expressing the desire to 'bring the boys home', or other equally trite drivel.

The French chose not to support a war (that as it turns out, was waged on the premise that IRAQ had weapons of mass destruction, which have yet to be found) that they did not agree with. So did Canada, so did Russia, so did Germany, so did most of the western world. Everyone but Britain pretty much said "thanks, but no," as is their rights as independent and sovereign nations.
Here in Canada, we are facing unofficial trade sanctions.
We know how the average American treats the French.
It's the same for other countries.

We chose not to support an unjust and unilateral war, which is our right, and the Americans are shitting their pants over it, like they always do.

French take down the flag?
Well, good sir, its the end of the world.
Never mind the fact that their is no obligation to keep it flying...

Plane flies into a building?
Well, good sir, its the end of the world.
Never mind the fact that Europe has had to deal with terrorism on far larger a scale.
Ireland?
(Please note, I am not disrespecting the deaths of any of the 3,000-5,000 people who died in the attack, merely stating the fact that America over reacts to everything)

In conclusion, I dont know if the flags were removed for sinister reasons.
None of us do.

Posted by: Jef | July 1, 2003 09:30 PM

"American contributions to the second World War were minimal at best and for the most part inconsequential."

Yea, whatever. America fielded the third largest military, behind Germany and China. Our troops fought throughout Europe, North Africa, and the Pacific Theater. We supplied our allies, including the French Resistance movement, with all kinds of supplies including weapons and food. Our people united as a whole nation to preserve our country and those of our allies.

To those who put down the events many brave people sacrificed their lives for, how would you like to be remembered if you were to fight for anothers' freedom?

Posted by: Sean | July 1, 2003 09:30 PM

Keep going France! Show those American jackasses!

Posted by: Patrick | July 1, 2003 09:32 PM

People in America dont focus on France, and make policies for the sake of being against the French...we are focused on ending terrorism, in case you havent noticced...something France may want to think about ..considering....

Posted by: ts | July 1, 2003 09:34 PM

I do believe you have your facts backwards, Gary.

The US was known for precision bombing. At least, they tried to be. The Norden bombsight was a great device, but at high altitude it would still drop bombs up to 1/5 mile off-target. It was from the Brits that the US actually learned how to carpet bomb. Just fly a massive armada of bombers over a target and once the lead bomber started dropping bombs, all others followed suit.

That's why in 1942 the Norden bombsight was all but declassified. Because instead of trying to hit targets with bombs the US Army had learned from the English to just engulf it with bombs.

Posted by: John Jay | July 1, 2003 09:37 PM

Next year, we'll commemorate the 60 years of D-Day and the beginning of the liberation of Europe, from the West (on the East, the Red Army led a conquest war, multiplying the exactions. Not a liberation one).

There's a book called, I believe, "Other Issues" that you might want to check out. It has documented evidence of Eisenhower's deliberate policy of starving to death 700,000-750,000 German POWs to "teach the stuck-up Germans a lesson."

Despite food shortages at the end of the war, many of the POW camps had crates of food piled high, in deliberate sight of the prisoners. However the camp guards were under orders (from Eisenhower) to shoot on the spot anyone who tried to offer food to them. Testimony is given in the book from US soldiers who, after being disgusted by what they saw at German concentration camps, believed their nation was better and attempted to feed the POWs from their own rations, only to be told that if they tried it again, they'd be executed.

As for the treacherous French not supporting the war in the Gulf, check what America's first military act involving France, in WWII, was. The first military action the US took, after the fall of France, was to seize some free French fishing islands in the atlantic. Islands which, I believe, never quite got returned.

Attacking other nations on the sole basis of the history taught within one country, especially one where history is edited as selectively as in the US, tends to lead to a lot of profoundly hypocritical statements.

Yes, the USSR did keep most of the territory it roled through, rather than liberate it. At the same time, stopping Hitler was a vastly more important goal than the territorial acquisitions. To imply that one nation is right while another wrong, especially when distorting emphasis and missing other historical fact, is to do a massive disservice to the orders of magnitude larger numbers of Russian men and women who died fighting just as heroically, just as honorably as those from other nations.

In short, the bureaucrats behind every nation commit acts that disgust all humanity, from the safety of seats of government miles from any front. While attrocities may also occur amongst them, the men and women who lay their lives on the line deserve respect regardless of race or creed. If there is one thing history teaches us - all men are created equal. Hating or devaluing on national grounds, be it the French abusing Americans, Americans abusing French or attacking Russians, is to miss everything those brave sacrifices teach.

Posted by: Nicholas D | July 1, 2003 09:37 PM

Very professional of you Patrick. I'm so proud that you could contribute your mindless banter in this topic.

Posted by: Sergeant USMC | July 1, 2003 09:38 PM

TDF (163):

Yes, I was examining the hi-res images. I stand by my claim that the sky in the pole image has been altered. I would encourage anyone to follow my instructions and make up their own minds.

As to the rest... maybe I wasn't clear. When I said "The centre flagpole is of a different texture than the other two, and is apparently growing out of a mature bush, which means nobody could get close enough to raise or lower the flag" I wasn't implying Photoshopping - I think the flagpole really is of a different texture (you say it's under different lighting conditions - fair enough). The other image does prove that their are only three flagpoles, and one of them has historically been empty. If the American flag is missing as you imply, where is the Canadian flag supposed to go?

My last comment was a joke - a little dig at the people who would like to tar and feather an entire nation based on inflammatory journalism. Hence the anecdote/proof crack. I'm sorry it went over your head.

Posted by: qwe | July 1, 2003 09:40 PM

Just an aside.. I was in France last October or so, and I decided to drive from Caen out to see the American Cemetery, near Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer, on a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon.. What I found was a line of cars being turned away at the gate because apparently, 3:00 is when it closes (it was around 3:30).. LOTS of pissed off Americans that had driven way out of their way, all for nothing (the town Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer is really out of the way, requiring a longish drive up a one lane road).. I had to satisfy myself with a picture of the site where the dead were originally buried (before they were disinterred and moved up to the big cemetery..).. in case anyone would like to see this, the picture is at http://www.qwertyuiop.us/photos/Paris/small/IMG_0490.jpg (omit the "small" for a bigger [3.3MB]) pic).

Posted by: Binkley | July 1, 2003 09:41 PM

Jef said:
Plane flies into a building?
Well, good sir, its the end of the world.
Never mind the fact that Europe has had to deal with terrorism on far larger a scale.
Ireland?
(Please note, I am not disrespecting the deaths of any of the 3,000-5,000 people who died in the attack, merely stating the fact that America over reacts to everything)
Yes you are disrespecting them...and the people who have died in Africa from Jihad, in asia from Jihad, in russia from Jihad....etc etc..and you are disrespecting the people trapped under submission to Allah in Islamic countries, murdered tortued beaten etc etc.
The end of the world you speak about as a JOKE..may be closer than you think.
Do you think its ok if Islamic-Jihadists get WMD?
They will use them ya know...why do you think the world, not just the US, doesnt want them to have them?
You sir, ignore the Islamic terror threat and oppression around the world.
But of course, maybe you think Islam isnt so bad, hey ya get four wives and sex slaves in return for fighting the Jihad, just like it says in the Quran.
With men like you in the free world, Islamists have it made.

Posted by: TS | July 1, 2003 09:42 PM

Well said, TS

Posted by: Sergeant USMC | July 1, 2003 09:44 PM

Well, some 150 comments into this thing and I was finally set-off to the point of posting myself. Frankly, I'm not even disturbed by the lack of American flags at Normandy...at least not after reading some of the absolutely ludicrous posts I've read here that demonstrate immense ineptitude when it comes to piecing together history and approaching it in a logical manner. So a few reminders for some of you out there...

1)Yes, France did help the United States in its bid for independence. But let's not forget that the American Revolution was fought against the British, who just happened to be long-time enemies of the French. As the saying goes, my enemy's enemy is my friend. France's participation in the revolution was, by the most conservative approach, as much about their self-interest as it was virtuous. I'm not in any way accusing France of only looking out for number one, but let's face facts here...it wasn't about just being nice to the new kid.

2)I loathe even addressing this, but whoever it was that claimed America's participation in WWII's European theater was inconsequential most likely serves as a prime example of the failings of public education. In an effort to aid its allies, the United States pulled itself up by its bootstraps from a depression to launch a military machine that had been left to rust following WWI in a relatively short period of time. It wasn't just the soldiers, either. It was every American who bought a war bond, rationed, left home to work on the assembly lines or lost a loved one to aid our allies against an enemy that really didn't even pose that much of a threat to the US at the time. Furthermore, the US abandoned isolationist policies to aid Europe in its time of need. These are the same policies, the belief that the US should keep its nose out of foreign affairs, that countries such as France want the US to practice now. Well, we learned from our mistakes back then, and it would be silly of us to go back to it today.

3)Finally, the US was attacked on 9/11, for those of you who seem to forget. I don't care what we may have done to lead up to it, we were attacked and we're not going to let it happen again. Unlike so many other countries that seem to believe appeasement is the best policy, we won't stand idly by as our nation is attacked in hopes that our enemies will just work it out of their system. If you take on the US, there will be repercussions. And we'd sure as hell appreciate it if our friends would lend a helping hand. But France turned out to be the kind of buddy who says he'll help you move but won't answer the phone when it comes time to lift that heavy entertainment center into the truck. Not only that, but the kind of friend who calls all your other friends and encourages them not to help either. In the end, we learn that with friends like that, who needs...well, you get the point.

Listen, I've got nothing against the French people as individuals. In fact, I feel more sorry for them more than anything. Here is a people rich in culture and history that seem to have lost their way in the modern world and are allowing it to be destroyed not by the US, but by the very radicals the US hopes to eliminate. There simply comes a time when you need to stand up for what you believe is right. That has been a constant theme throughout America's relatively short history, but one that has proven prosperous. Perhaps it doesn't mesh with the storied history of France, but it's worked for us and we're going to keep on keeping on (thanks Joe Dirt). And when all is said and done, we'll go home and start screening our calls, just in case its a fair-weather friend looking for a helping hand.

And that's the way it is.

Posted by: David | July 1, 2003 09:47 PM

The US saved the frogs from the Germans and they'll never forgive us for it. Look, it's pretty much a given that the French (and certain other western Europeans)are extremely jealous of Americans. We're the big 'can-do' cowboy and they're the guy making the beans for our grub. I would lay money that these pictures are accurate. I just can't believe they would stoop so low. There is no equivalency here. Not buying their wine or visiting their country is quite different from disrespecting our men and women who gave their lives liberating their country. As for the folks arguing that the French just disagreed with us on the Iraq issue, I think Regis Philbin put it as well as anyone could. "The only time the French want to go to war is when the German army is sitting in Paris sipping coffee."

Posted by: ap0calpt1c | July 1, 2003 09:48 PM

My feelings would best be summed up in a soliquacious image posted at:

http://www.elgatobloggo.com/archives/000095.html

Posted by: El Gato | July 1, 2003 09:49 PM

TDF (163)

I've just looked at the newest images you posted, which you hadn't put up when I originally viewed them, and I want to retract my accusation that they've been edited.

In addition, a halyard is present - another error on my part, and I apologise.

I still think that the centre flagpole has been vacant for some time though, and that there are only three flagpoles present. This phpto doesn't show an attempt to insult America.

Posted by: qwe | July 1, 2003 09:51 PM

The Australian flag is missing.

Posted by: Tzurriz | July 1, 2003 09:51 PM

TS - Shall I obtain a plane ticket, fly of to these Islamic countries, and kill me as many "A-rabs" as I can, before I get offed?

We have to point out the fact that Iraq was the most forword thinking of Muslim countries.
It was.
Now, its nothing but a US puppet state.

Now, what Jihad do you speak of?
Actual orginizations like the Islamic Jihad, or actions (the Jihad) declared by other orginizations?

Iraq had and has used Chemical weapons, on the Kurds.
We know that.
Its reprehensible.
Who supplied the weapons?
The US, and the Brittish when they were setting Saddam up as a pro-US force in a decisively Anti-Us atmosphere...

I do not think that it is disrepectful to question the actions taken in the name of the dead.

Posted by: Jef | July 1, 2003 09:52 PM

All I have to say is, next time Froggies, don't come callin' when you need help (I'm guessing that will be soon, like when the massive Arab radical population in your midst decides Sharia laws would be a great idea).

As for the gentleman who suggested that we "overreact to everything..." If you think for one second that "The Troubles" are remotely comparable to what happened on 9/11--either in terms of carnage or in terms of the sheer number of people whose hatred for the West (not JUST the US as you believe) was represented by those attacks (and thus the sheer magnitude of the long-term danger to all of the freedom loving NON-Muslim people on the planet), then you are simply delusional. What happened in Ireland had almost ZERO impact on what goes on in Paris. What happened in NY, PA and D.C. has a very significant impact on the entire Western World. I'm sorry to be so harsh and blunt, and do not mean to belittle the deaths of Irish or British on either side of the troubles, but the two are not comparable because they are not motivated by the same types of things AT ALL.

A basic course in geo-politics and religion could have taught you that!

Posted by: Deb | July 1, 2003 09:54 PM

The Friggin' French will always be obnoxious and ungrateful. They have shown it time after time. Why should we expect them to change? It runs in their blood. They are cowards! Remember, they have plenty of military rifles for sale, only dropped once!

Posted by: Charles Rahn | July 1, 2003 09:54 PM

Everyone should read David's post on #182...and stop this so called debate.
For those of you that oppose what America stands for, I leave you with this...

The Soldier
By Father Denis Edward O’Brien

“It is the soldier, not the reporter,
Who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the soldier, not the poet,
Who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the soldier, not the campus organizer,
Who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.
It is the soldier,
Who salutes the flag,
Who serves beneath the flag,
And whose coffin is draped by the flag,
Who allows the protestor to burn the flag.”

Posted by: Sergeant USMC | July 1, 2003 09:56 PM

Don't see why this is such a surprise to anyone, given the childishness the Americans displayed at the very thought of (gasp) France wanting to follow its own foreign policy during the Gulf crisis and subsequent war.

Two wrongs don't make a right, and this is indeed childish, but no less childish than restaurants serving members of the US government changing the name of "French fries" to "freedom fries."

No point crying foul now, Americans, you did start it after all.

Demanding that France follow you blindly into a war because of WW II is like saving a drowning man and then coming around 50 years later and demanding he drive the getaway car for you during a bank heist because "he owes me." Real life doesn't work that way.

Posted by: Michael Dorosh | July 1, 2003 09:56 PM

1st rule of Frech warfare - France only wins when America does most of the fighting

2nd rule of French warfare - France only wins when lead by a foreigner (Napoleon was Corsican. Ans as we all know, he STILL lost)

Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without an accordion. All you do is leave behind a lot of noisy baggage.

http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/text/france.html

Posted by: JR | July 1, 2003 09:57 PM

I recognize the British flag and the Canadian flag in the picture, but what is that third flag? My brother tells me it is the French flag but I always thought that the official French flag was a white bar on a field of white.

Posted by: Viet Minh | July 1, 2003 09:58 PM

#178: Sorry to see that, despite the fact that you found by yourself on an external site a picture that's exactly the SAME AS MINE with an empty pole in the middle... You stick by your claim that I edited my picture... To do what? Remove what wasn't there?

As far as the poles are concerned, what I did imply is that a flag is missing. Read the original post again, see the comment that's right under each picture, check back among the comments (granted, that would be a bit difficult) my repeated precisions on what this museum is, what it's not and what I meant with this post.

Although the missing one is indeed obvious when it comes to the pedestals and the pin's, all I ever wrote, claimed, shown is that there are three troubling coincidences I noticed at the Museum. Period.

You don't seem to understand how you guys are getting fast on this, without even taking the time to accurately read and figure out what I'm writing (and I don't mean "you" qwe alone of course). I just went to post a comment on a weblog that linked to this post stating that I had found that "all American flags were removed from the Museum"...

Before you start typing, most people here should take a moment to pause and think. That's the idea behind the old WWII poster that shows when you move your mouse over the little soldier just next the "preview" button.

That's for all the people around: when it comes to my posts, I'm very careful with what I write and how I write it. Mostly because I know that I'm not a native English writer and that I must take extra care to express my argument accurately.

The corollary is that I expect my readers to read carefully what I write. So don't make me say what I didn't say...

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 10:03 PM

Maybe all the US flags were at the cleaners...

Posted by: Eamon Portico | July 1, 2003 10:05 PM

171:
>The French chose not to support a war (that as it turns out, was waged on the >premise that IRAQ had weapons of mass destruction, which have yet to be found) >that they did not agree with. So did Canada, so did Russia, so did Germany, so did >most of the western world. Everyone but Britain pretty much said "thanks, but no," >as is their rights as independent and sovereign nations.

Australia? Poland? Spain? Italy? Japan? Qatar? Kuwait? Denmark? Croatia? The Czech Republic? All these countries supported the US in various ways. Don't they count?

Of course it was France's right to oppose US policy; no one is suggesting we invade France as punishment. But we do have a right to react to the fact that France is no longer a friend and ally. Some react is childish ways ("Freedom Fries"); obviously, the vast majority of Americans realized how silly that was. McDonalds (which has some grievances of its own...), by far the largest purveyor of French Fries, didn't rename them, and I don't know others which did.

> Here in Canada, we are facing unofficial trade sanctions.

I wouldn't call softwwod, etc., "sanctions", but you're right - US trade policy is indefensible.

> We know how the average American treats the French.

The average American doesn't treat the French at all...

> We chose not to support an unjust and unilateral war, which is our right, and the > Americans are shitting their pants over it, like they always do.

Actually, I don't think the average American cared much about whether Canada supported liberating Iraq (although I did). (BTW, I don't think the average American is aware of the significant contribution of Canada in Afghanistan (not to mention WWI, WWII, and Korea), either.)

> French take down the flag?
> Well, good sir, its the end of the world.
> Never mind the fact that their is no obligation to keep it flying...

I don't know if they did or not, if the picture was doctored or not (although JPEG compression is not fixed at 3x3 pixels), if the flag should have been there or not. However, if is was there a year (or two or ten years) ago, "there" is an obligation not to deny the past, especially at a museum.

> Plane flies into a building?
> Well, good sir, its the end of the world.
> Never mind the fact that Europe has had to deal with terrorism on far larger a scale.
> Ireland?

No; besides being an intra-Europe affair, that was over a period of decades, AND still killed fewer (and far fewer civilians) than the recent terrorist attacks against the US.

> (Please note, I am not disrespecting the deaths of any of the 3,000-5,000 people
> who died in the attack, merely stating the fact that America over reacts to
> everything)

America does have a tendency to overreact - but hasn't in this case - not even close. A significant portion of the world declared war on the US (long before 9/11), and we finally were roused to real (many would say belated) action by the attacks. Among the results (by no means all positive) are two countries much freer than they were before the attacks.

Posted by: Pablo | July 1, 2003 10:05 PM

This is off-topic, but this is funny how the nervous breakdown that America is currently going though has created so much disinformation in the US
1/ France is deeply involved in the war against terror, and is the target from many fundamentalist attacks (paris metro bombings in 95-96, attacks on our tanker in 02, 11 French engineers slaughtered in Pakistan in 02). The Pentagon is working closely with the French intelligence on terrorist issues. But since half of Americans think that Saddam was involved in 9/11, then, er..., there's nothing we can do for you.
2/ Based on Pat Buchanan's theories, many Americans think that France will become a muslim state in 2040. Just like America will become latino and will abandon baseball for soccer and hamburgers for beans.
3/ the only problem France has with the current America is "Bush". Many polls have proven that France has no problems with America at all. I concede that some of the French intelligentsia (limited to the 5th and 6th arrondissements in Paris) can be described as "anti-American"

Sad to see that trolls, such as dissidentfrogman, whose only goals are to stir hate, contribute to this disinformation campaign.

Posted by: glouton | July 1, 2003 10:05 PM

http://battlefieldsww2.50megs.com/sherwood_rangers_memorial.htm

The flag pole is supposed to be empty. It's a memorial for the Sherwood Rangers. Now as to why the flag pole is empty, I don't know.

Posted by: John O | July 1, 2003 10:08 PM

Would you like a side of "Freedom" Fries or "Liberty" toast with your whine?

Posted by: bad broose | July 1, 2003 10:08 PM

#185 (qwe) Sorry, your apology came as I was posting the previous comment.
Apology accepted. Now if you could claim it as loud as the aspersion that triggered it... ;-)

For the rest, you may want to check my former comment no matter what. Especially when it goes "don't make me say what I didn't say".

Posted by: the dissident frogman | July 1, 2003 10:08 PM

#173,

Yes France show the cowboy Americans. Suck up to the mullahs in Iran. Give Mugabe the royal treatment. Pacify the Ivory Coast.

The French are truly superior.

It is proved by how well they are handling the Muslim invasion. They have learned well from their WW2 experiences. Invasions are not too difficult to handle given enough grease. This time vegetable oil will be prefered to pig fat but that is a relatively minor issue.

Posted by: M. Simon | July 1, 2003 10:09 PM

I would like all those that feel the need to hate the Americans or the French, no matter what their reason, to explain their reasons to my grandfather, who still lies on that beach somewhere. He charged that hell hole, never thinking that some day the country he would give his life for just minutes later and the country he was trying to help would be mud slinging and stereotyping each other to the level of a 1st grader. He charged onto that beach never expecting such petty actions of those he would call countrymen and those he would call allies. I often wonder what he would do if he knew this is the way it would turn out.

My guess. No matter how much the acts of both the Americans and the French public would make him sick to his stomach, he would probably still charge that beach because it was the right thing to do and it needed to be done. It's just a shame those who benefit most from his sacrifice are the first to forget it, no matter what the nationatility.

Posted by: Unkown Grandson of a Soldier | July 1, 2003 10:09 PM

Yes Iraq was so forward thinking that they gave people a few moments to rest before they tortured them.

Posted by: HH | July 1, 2003 10:11 PM

Jef:
TS - Shall I obtain a plane ticket, fly of to these Islamic countries, and kill me as many "A-rabs" as I can, before I get offed?

Its not about A-rabs, as you say...its about the political-social ideology of Islam.

We have to point out the fact that Iraq was the most forword thinking of Muslim countries.
It was.
Now, its nothing but a US puppet state.

The Coalition will bring freedom to Iraq and end the torture etc, but freedom is the key, Do you think the people were better off before? If you do thats pretty sick.
For this Islamic threat to end, there must be freedom for muslims to speak out without fear of death or torture.Because if a non muslim speaks out they are called racist, which I guess is what your "A-rab" comment was meant to convey about me.


Now, what Jihad do you speak of?
Actual orginizations like the Islamic Jihad, or actions (the Jihad) declared by other orginizations?
HELLOOOO lets see, the Jihad in Africa (Sudan,Nigeria,Liberia,Malawi etc) the Jihad in Phillipines, Indonesia,Kashmir, Israel, The Jihad in Chechnya,Algeria,etc etc..need I go on..or are you not up on the news...oh and lets not forget the Jihad against America and the rest of the free world...and then there is the "lesser" Jihad, making it a hate crime to tell the truth about Islam, setting up "muslim youth centers", lobbying governments for Islamic causes, white washing Islam...need I go on???
That Jihad!..you need to read the Quran and find out about Muhammed and then take a look around the world, and see whats happening.
Youd have to be under a rock to not see what is happening in the world!...or willingly ignore it.

Iraq had and has used Chemical weapons, on the Kurds.
We know that.
Its reprehensible.
Who supplied the weapons?
The US, and the Brittish when they were setting Saddam up as a pro-US force in a decisively Anti-Us atmosphere...
We helped Saddam because we did not want Iran to take over the territory..we were never his friend and ally in the sense of the true word..and what were other countries participating in at this time? Is America the only gulity one of proxy wars..I think not.And lets see France gave Saddam nuclear technology...so no country is innocent of playing two sides against the middle..America has decided to get out of that business..has France?

I do not think that it is disrepectful to question the actions taken in the name of the dead.
What? It is disrespectful to ignore the Islamic Jihad problem and pretty much by doing that you are trying to blame these murders on other reasons...and that is disrespectful...all these people killed by the teachings of Jihad, DESERVE to have people know why they were killed...and to remedy the sickness that causes people to go murder innocent people because they are the infidel, or are not submitting to Allah.
These people should not have died in vain...there voices from the grave should cry out to us for JUSTICE.
And if you and people like you, continue to ignore the real probelm, you disrespect their sufferings and deaths.
Period.

Posted by: ts | July 1, 2003 10:14 PM

Nick D:

The book is called "Other Losses", and the author's preposterous "1 million dead" figure is based on a clerical error. Read what the late Steven Ambrose (who served on a comittee investigating the book's charges) had to say about it here:

http://www.nizkor.org/hweb/people/b/bacque-james/ambrose-001.html

There was likely mistreatment of German POWs by US forces. However, compared to mistreatment of German POWs by the Soviets? Hello? Not even on the same planet.

Stalin was out for territory - let's not pretend on that account. And it wasn't the USSR or world communism the Red Army was fighting to protect. To quote Alexander Solzhenitsyn as best I can, "it was only Ivan fighting for Holy Russia on the Mother Volga that stopped the onslaught".

Posted by: SparcVark | July 1, 2003 10:15 PM

Dissident Frogman:

Are you sure that the American flag normally flies on that particular flagpole? It would be incredibly stupid for the French to make an anti-American gesture at a place like Normandy. There would be a shitstorm in the US if the American media got wind of it and I can't believe the French would be that dumb.

Posted by: Randal | July 1, 2003 10:18 PM

And we all remember how France was in favor of bombing Iraq when Clinton was in charge...

Posted by: HH | July 1, 2003 10:18 PM

To Sergeant re: #159,
BRAVO! Spoken like a true American! Finally, a mature, objective and evenhanded response, and from a U.S. Marine -- that is pure GOLD.
My heartfelt thanks to you and all of your brothers and sisters in the armed forces for all of your past and future sacrifices. The rest of us owe you more than we could ever express. There has been far too much of this tit-for-tat, "ban the French fry" vs. "down with les Etats Unis" nonsense. Who cares what a few malcontents or social delinquents do over in France? Like all the crap Americans do is any less childish and hateful? And French wine -- know why it's so good?? All the American and English/Irish/Scottish and Canadian blood soaked up by those grape vines. So drink up and enjoy! That's right -- LAUGH -- it's good for the soul. People: try generating a little clemency and objectivity and LOVE. Enough with the ping-pong match of who can insult the other more. Get your butts off the computer and go do something meaningful. Spead some goodwill and show the world that we here in the U.S. are above all this namecalling and international bigotry. God (or whatever you believe in) bless us all! --------------*

Posted by: NYC Fred | July 1, 2003 10:24 PM

Everytime I see or hear another American spewing one vitrolic comment or another about how the French are ignorant, backward, "surrender frogs", et cetera, I lose faith in America. Suffice to say, I feel the same every time I hear equally narrowminded comments directed at Americans by French people. I think that it is despicable, the way that the French people (not to indict the French in general) have chosen to show their displeasure with the US in this instance - what did American soldiers 50 years ago do to have their legacy sullied like this? - but I am equally disturbed by the undisguised hatred of many Americans, exemplified by some of the comments here. And for some reason people in BOTH these countries wonder why others talk of them so disparingly?

Posted by: Ed | July 1, 2003 10:32 PM