State Dept. Advisory for Americans Travelling in France

From: Nigel Hay - MILWEB (
Date: Mon Feb 24 2003 - 02:11:48 PST

For those of you who are planning to come to the military vehicle
particiapation in the Rememberance events in Normandy next year, I have
stumbled on some useful advice from your very own State Dept.
It does seem that the ban on armoured vehicles taking part in the events
wont be allowed without special permits.
Hope it helps.

The following advisory for American travellers heading for France was
Compiled from information provided by the U.S. State Department, the Central
Intelligence Agency, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Food and Drug
Administration, the Center for Disease Control and some very expensive spy
satellites that the French don't know about. It is intended as a guide for
American travellers only and no guarantee of accuracy is ensured or

General Overview
France is a medium-sized foreign country situated on the continent of
Europe, and is for all intents purposes, useless. It is an important member
of the
world community, although not nearly as important as it thinks. It is
bounded by Germany, Spain, Switzerland and some smaller nations of no
consequence or shopping opportunities. France is a very old country with
many treasures such as the Louvre and EuroDisney. Among its contributions to
Western civilisation are champagne, Camembert cheese, the guillotine, and

Although France likes to think of itself as a modern nation, air
Conditioning is little used and it is next to impossible to get decent
Chinese food. One continuing exasperation for American visitors is that the
people wilfully
persist in speaking French, although many can be made to understand English
if shouted at repeatedly.

The People
France has a population of 54 million people, most of whom drink and smoke
A great deal, drive like lunatics, are dangerously overs*xed and have no
Concept of standing patiently in a line. The French people are generally
temperamental, proud, arrogant, aloof and undisciplined; those are their
good points. Most French citizens are Roman Catholic, although you'd hardly
guess it from their behaviour.

Many people are Communists and topless sunbathing is common. Men sometimes
Have girls' names like Dominique and they kiss each other when they hand out

American travellers are advised to travel in groups and to wear baseball
Caps and colourful pants for easier mutual recognition. All French women
have Small breasts, and don't shave their armpits or their legs. In rural
areas they interbreed.
Incest appears to be inverslet proportional to bus services.

In general, France is a safe destination, although travellers are advised
That France is occasionally invaded by Germany. By tradition, the French
Surrender more or less at once and, apart from a temporary shortage of
Scotch whisky
And increased difficulty in getting baseball scores and stock market prices,
Life for the visitors generally goes on much as before. A tunnel connecting
France to Britain beneath the English Channel has been opened in recent
years to
Make it easier for the French government to flee to London.

France was discovered by Charlemagne in the Dark Ages. Other important
historical figures are Louis XIV, the Huguenots, Joan of Arc, Jacques
Cousteau and Charles de Gaulle, who was President for many years and is now
airport. The French armies of the past have had their *sses kicked by just
every other country in the world.

The French form of government is democratic but noisy. Elections are held
More or less continuously and always result in a runoff. For administrative
purposes, the country is divided into regions, departments, districts,
municipalities, cantons, communes, villages, cafes, booths and floor tiles.
Parliament consists of two chambers, the Upper and Lower (although,
confusingly, they are both on the ground floor), whose members are either
Gaullists or communists, neither of whom can be trusted.

Parliament's principal preoccupations are setting off atomic bombs in the
South Pacific and acting indignant when anyone complains. According to the
current State Department intelligence, the current President is someone
named Jacques. Further information is not available at this time.

The French pride themselves on their culture, although it is not easy to
See why. All of their songs sound the same and they have hardly ever made a
movie that you want to watch for anything except the nude scenes. Nothing,
course, is more boring than a French novel (except perhaps an evening with a

Let's face it, no matter how much garlic you put on it, a snail is just a
Slug with a shell on its back. Croissants, on the other hand, are excellent
Although it is impossible for most Americans to pronounce this word.
Travellers are therefore advised to stick to cheeseburgers at McDonald's or
restaurants at the leading hotels such as Sheraton or Holiday Inn. Bring
your own beer, as the domestic varieties are nothing but a poor excuse for

France has a large and diversified economy, second only to Germany's
economy in Europe, which is surprising since people hardly ever work at all.
If they
are not spending four hours dawdling over lunch, they are on strike and
blocking the roads with their trucks and tractors. France's principal
exports, in
order of importance to the economy, are wine, nuclear weapons, perfume,
missiles, champagne, high-calibre weaponry, grenade launchers, land mines,
tanks, attack aircraft, miscellaneous armaments and cheese.

France enjoys a rich history, a picturesque and varied landscape and a
temperate climate. In short, it would be a very nice country if French
people didn't inhabit it, and it weren't still radioactive from all the
tests. The best thing that can be said for it is that it is not Spain.
No one ordered you to go abroad. Personally, we always take our vacation in
Miami Beach and you are advised to do the same.

Recent News Items Involving France

When advised that France had announced it would not assist, become allied
With or otherwise support the US in any war on Iraq, Ross Perot reportedly
"Having to go to war without France is sort of like having to go deer
hunting without an accordion."

Fred Barnes (Fox News) said last week, "It is good to have France on Iraq's
side, because they will be able to teach the Iraqis how to surrender."

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