18 thoughts on “The definition of a guranteed failure”

  1. good one, Daniel

    The British have reacted to the recent terrorism alerts by raising their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” Londoners have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940, when tea supplies all but ran out.

    Terrorists have been recategorized from “Tiresome” to a “Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was during the great fire of 1666.

    Also, the French Government announced yesterday that it has raised its error alert level from “Run” to “Hide.” The only two higher levels in France are “Surrender” and “Collaborate.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France’s white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country’s military capability.

    It’s not only the English and French that are on a heightened level of alert.

    Italy has increased the alert level from “Shout Loudly and Excitedly” to “Elaborate Military Posturing.” Two more levels remain: “Ineffective Combat Operations” and “Change Sides.”

    The Germans also increased their alert state from “Disdainful Arrogance” to “Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs.” They also have two higher levels: “Invade a Neighbour” and “Lose.”

    Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday, as is customary, and the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

  2. bit o’ french history from


    gotta love the line
    the french, they are there when they need you…

    – Gallic Wars
    – Lost. In a war whose ending foreshadows the next 2000 years of French history, France is conquered by of all things, an Italian. [Or at ths time in history, a Roman -ed.]

    – Hundred Years War
    – Mostly lost, saved at last by female schizophrenic who inadvertently creates The First Rule of French Warfare; “France’s armies are victorious only when not led by a Frenchman.” Sainted.

    – Italian Wars
    – Lost. France becomes the first and only country to ever lose two wars when fighting Italians.

    – Wars of Religion
    – France goes 0-5-4 against the Huguenots

    – Thirty Years War
    – France is technically not a participant, but manages to get invaded anyway. Claims a tie on the basis that eventually the other participants started ignoring her.

    – War of Revolution
    – Tied. Frenchmen take to wearing red flowerpots as chapeaux.

    – The Dutch War
    – Tied

    – War of the Augsburg League/King William’s War/French and Indian War
    – Lost, but claimed as a tie. Three ties in a row induces deluded Frogophiles the world over to label the period as the height of French military power.

    – War of the Spanish Succession
    – Lost. The War also gave the French their first taste of a Marlborough, which they have loved every since.

    – American Revolution
    – In a move that will become quite familiar to future Americans, France claims a win even though the English colonists saw far more action. This is later known as “de Gaulle Syndrome”, and leads to the Second Rule of French Warfare; “France only wins when America does most of the fighting.”

    – French Revolution
    – Won, primarily due the fact that the opponent was also French.

    – The Napoleonic Wars
    – Lost. Temporary victories (remember the First Rule!) due to leadership of a Corsican, who ended up being no match for a British footwear designer.

    – The Franco-Prussian War
    – Lost. Germany first plays the role of drunk Frat boy to France’s ugly girl home alone on a Saturday night.

    – World War I
    – Tied and on the way to losing, France is saved by the United States [Entering the war late -ed.]. Thousands of French women find out what it’s like to not only sleep with a winner, but one who doesn’t call her “Fraulein.” Sadly, widespread use of condoms by American forces forestalls any improvement in the French bloodline.

    – World War II
    – Lost. Conquered French liberated by the United States and Britain just as they finish learning the Horst Wessel Song.

    – War in Indochina
    – Lost. French forces plead sickness; take to bed with the Dien Bien Flu

    – Algerian Rebellion
    – Lost. Loss marks the first defeat of a western army by a Non-Turkic Muslim force since the Crusades, and produces the First Rule of Muslim Warfare; “We can always beat the French.” This rule is identical to the First Rules of the Italians, Russians, Germans, English, Dutch, Spanish, Vietnamese and Esquimaux.

    – War on Terrorism
    – France, keeping in mind its recent history, surrenders to Germans and Muslims just to be safe. Attempts to surrender to Vietnamese ambassador fail after he takes refuge in a McDonald’s.

    The question for any country silly enough to count on the French should not be “Can we count on the French?”, but rather “How long until France collapses?”

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

    Or, better still, the quote from last week’s Wall Street Journal: “They’re there when they need you.”

    With only an hour and a half of research, Jonathan Duczkowski provided the following losses:

    Norse invasions, 841-911.
    After having their way with the French for 70 years, the Norse are bribed by a French King named Charles the Simple (really!) who gave them Normandy in return for peace. Normans proceed to become just about the only positive military bonus in France’s [favour] for next 500 years.

    Mexico, 1863-1864.
    France attempts to take advantage of Mexico’s weakness following its thorough thrashing by the U.S. 20 years earlier (“Halls of Montezuma”). Not surprisingly, the only unit to distinguish itself is the French Foreign Legion (consisting of, by definition, non-Frenchmen). Booted out of the country a little over a year after arrival.

    Panama jungles 1881-1890.
    No one but nature to fight, France still loses; canal is eventually built by the U.S. 1904-1914.

    Napoleonic Wars.
    Should be noted that the Grand Armee was largely (~%50) composed of non-Frenchmen after 1804 or so. Mainly disgruntled minorities and anti-monarchists. Not surprisingly, these performed better than the French on many occasions.

    Haiti, 1791-1804.
    French defeated by rebellion after sacrificing 4,000 Poles to yellow fever. Shows another rule of French warfare; when in doubt, send an ally.

    India, 1673-1813.
    British were far more charming than French, ended up victors. Therefore the British are well known for their tea, and the French for their whine (er, wine…). Ensures 200 years of bad teeth in England.

    Barbary Wars, middle ages-1830.
    Pirates in North Africa continually harass European shipping in Meditteranean. France’s solution: pay them to leave us alone. America’s solution: kick their asses (“the Shores of Tripoli”). [America’s] first overseas victories, won 1801-1815.

    1798-1801, Quasi-War with U.S.
    French privateers (semi-legal pirates) attack U.S. shipping. U.S. fights France at sea for 3 years; French eventually cave; sets precedent for next 200 years of Franco-American relations.

    Moors in Spain, late 700s-early 800s.
    Even with Charlemagne leading them against an enemy living in a hostile land, French are unable to make much progress. Hide behind Pyrennes until the modern day.

    French-on-French losses (probably should be counted as victories too, just to be fair):

    1208: Albigenses Crusade, French massacared by French.
    When asked how to differentiate a heretic from the faithful, response was “Kill them all. God will know His own.” Lesson: French are badasses when fighting unarmed men, women and children.

    St. Bartholomew Day Massacre, August 24, 1572.
    Once again, French-on-French slaughter.

    Third Crusade.
    Philip Augustus of France throws hissy-fit, leaves Crusade for Richard the Lion Heart to finish.

    Seventh Crusade.
    St. Louis of France leads Crusade to Egypt. Resoundingly crushed.

    [Eighth] Crusade.
    St. Louis back in action, this time in Tunis. See Seventh Crusade.

    Also should be noted that France attempted to hide behind the Maginot line, sticking their head in the sand and pretending that the Germans would enter France that way. By doing so, the Germans would have been breaking with their traditional route of invading France, entering through Belgium (Napoleonic Wars, Franco-Prussian War, World War I, etc.). French ignored this though, and put all their effort into these defenses.

    Thomas Whiteley has submitted this addition to me:

    Seven year War 1756-1763
    Lost: after getting hammered by Frederick the Great of Prussia (yep, the Germans again) at Rossbach, the French were held off for the remainder of the War by Frederick of Brunswick and a hodge-podge army including some Brits. War also saw France kicked out of Canada (Wolfe at Quebec) and India (Clive at Plassey).

    Richard Mann, an American in France wants to add the following:

    The French consider the departure of the French from Algeria in 1962-63, after 130 years on colonialism, as a French victory and especially consider C. de Gaulle as a hero for ‘leading’ said victory over the unwilling French public who were very much against the departure. This ended their colonialism. About 2 million ungrateful Algerians lost their lives in this shoddy affair.

  3. What a novel way for the anti-semitic UN to ensure Israeli annhilation ~ send the French in charge.

    New French motto, “Apres mois …… la meme chose.”

  4. There goes the neighborhood!!!

    “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” has always been France’s motto. They were envious of Spain when it was a world power so they allied themselves with Spain’s enemies. When England became a world power, once again France allied itself with England’s enemies, and so it goes now with the United States.

  5. Hi all:
    While it,s certinaly nice sport to mock the French. I bet that French delay in sending troops to Lebanon wasn’t so they could have extra time to order white flags but because Chirac was facing pressure from his military. The generals wanted a robust ROE so that they’d have an excuse to kick o Hizbullahin the balls should it try to bitch slap the UN force like the Serbs did in the early days of the Yugoslav war.
    We’ve forgotten that those scum didn’t just kill American marines but also French para marines- 58 of them
    O and if the French are such pussies why did Chirac send in the Legion?

    I suspect that French are also sending a subtle message to the players there reminding them that the soldiers haven’t forgotten about the death of the para marines.


  6. Xavier, the French think they have balls, but they really don’t. Their pathetic history on the battlefield(s) more than proves that. As I like to say, “their greatest soldier was a fourteen year old girl, and their greatest General was an Italian.” I’ll take Jack Bauer over a division of French paramarines any day of the week.

  7. After losing his unconditional ally Mr.shroeder,
    Chirac who just wants protagonism,is looking for
    mending as much as it is possible the american-french relationship.He knows that he has a servant
    in Zapatero,but this one is to Chirac a nonenty.But Chirac who is ending his final tenure,could be an ally of Bush against Iran and its proxies Syria and Hezbollah and that is the paramount importance,b/c is seen that diplomatic approach with Iran is going to nowhere.

  8. George:
    I’ll disagree. The French are more comptent than we want to given them credit. They did after beat up Kaddafi pretty good in Chad. Nothing like seeing 2 Liban armoured units and a billion dollars of equipment go down the drain by a batallaian of legionnaires on jeeps with Milans.
    After Kaddafi’s defeat he turned his attention elsewhere.
    So I’ll be the lone voice defending the French soldiers never the politicians 😉

  9. George:
    I’ll disagree.;) The French are more competent than we want to give them credit for. After all, they did beat up Khaddaifi pretty bad in Chad. Nothing like 2 armoured units and 2 billion dollars of equipment down the drain. And by a batallion of legionnaires on jeeps with Milans. Afterwards, Khaddai turned his attention elsewhere.

    So lemme be the lone dissenter and defend the French soldiers never the politicians


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