" title="External link to: "(external) New York Times, September 18 2007":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/18/world/europe/18iran.html?ex=1347768000&en=d49ffa85c556c168&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss> " class="external">France Backtracks on War Talk Surrounding Iran's Nuclear Program
Prepared by Charlotte Everitt
French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner toned down the pitch of remarks he made earlier this week on the possibility of war with Iran, this time emphasizing negotiations over the use of military measures, report Katrin Bennhold and Elaine Sciolino for the New York Times. French Intelligence fears that Iran may produce a nuclear weapon before the projected 2010-2015 window.
Kouchner maintained that while all steps must be taken to avoid war, it is still necessary to prepare for “the worst”. His stance is supported by President Nicolas Sarkozy. The Foreign Ministry has, however, urged a more cautious approach to public diplomacy after Iran’s recent accusation that France is moving closer to the Bush administration. After the lessons of Iraq, it would perhaps be wise to remain cool.