Monday, September 3, 2012

This will sound like a snarky question, but it's not

Via a long chain starting here, came across the following article on Romney's missionary service:
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney could be excused for having flashbacks to the 1960s when he went door to door in Berlin, New Hampshire, on Thursday.

The former Massachusetts governor worked in France as a Mormon missionary from 1966 to 1968, one of the church’s thousands of earnest young men (mostly) who knock on doors and proselytize. At that point Romney had plenty of doors slammed in his face, but on Thursday, not so much.

“This is a lot easier,” Romney quipped to Reuters. “People speak English. They wish you Merry Christmas. They don’t think you’re a salesman. People used to come to the door [in France] and wag their fingers: ‘No, I don’t want anything.’”

Many French people at the time were “not happy to see Americans, because we were in Vietnam at the time. That was tough,” he added.
I realize the war was unpopular in most of Europe, but I'm a bit surprised to hear it was unpopular in France. given their relationship with the country and the conflict. I was under the impression (backed up by a quick visit to Wikipedia) that the US was, in a sense, picking up where the French had left off. I even seem to recall Eisenhower saying that we should be careful about getting involved with Vietnam because it was a continuation of a pro-colonial war (am I remembering this right?).

How strong was the anti-war feeling in France in the late Sixties?

1 comment:

  1. I suppose it is possible France was anti-war BECAUSE of their involvement in Vietnam. After all, one presumes the populace of France had to be against the war or else they would have continued fighting it.