America, Do You Want Fries With That?

Cast your mind back to 2003 when the neo-conservative hawks in

George W. Bush’s government had their way and started yet another

bloody military excursion in to the Middle East. This time Iraq.

Washington tried its best to cobble together a coalition of other

countries in a far from convincing effort to show some kind of

international consensus for the war. France, a considerable

European military power, declined to join Washington’s coalition. Cue

much gnashing of hawkish teeth and, naturally, the renaming of

“French fries” as “Freedom fries” by way of indignation that the

French had the temerity not to be on the side of “freedom.”

Of course, the very word “freedom” is a big deal in the American

political psyche. And while freedom is of course a very big deal, it’s