After discussing this with other moderators, it has been decided that a statement, non Political be made in the interests of French car owners & their passion; their cars.

As someone who has been involved in French cars for a couple of decades, I have seen things that many of you may not be aware of. I say that in reference to the many members we have aged in their early twenties who have discovered French cars in the past couple of years in particular.

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Here's the backdrop to this.

Wars raise a lot of passions and unfortunately, 'truth is always the first casualty of war.' If you have seen the news in the past few weeks, you will see that there is a lot of animosity between the Yanks & the French. There is apparently more to it than meets the eye but without getting into the politics of what it's all about, let me say that we can expect that there will now also be an anti-French propoganda campaign waged by both the Yanks and our Governments mouthpieces (Laws, Jones & the other shock jocks) possibly painting the French as sympathisers of the Iraqis.
If anyone has happened to hear Laws of late, he has been involved in the "winning the hearts & mind" of his mostly gullible audience by even going as far as using those dodgy phone polls to show that the Morgan & Newspoll, both legitimate & based on a set of proven guidelines, are getting a completely opposite result than his more "reliable" ring in when you feel like it system. (Minister to secretary "Gladys, get a couple of the girls to ring this number and keep hitting the redial a hundred times or so will you?") As a result, he has had a number of old 'rednecks' on air, ranting & raving & ready to launch an assault on anything & anybody not pushing the George W & Johnny W barrow. He has also made some very discomforting comments as regards the French & their attitude in the UN.

THIS IS WHERE WE COME IN!

During the time that the French were conducting nuclear tests in the Pacific and particularly after "The Rainbow Warrior" was blown up in Auckland harbour, owning, driving or having a business associated with French cars was not a real good career move.
Cars were vandalised, drivers run off roads & businesses targetted. In one case I know of personally, a German guy fixing French cars had his business vandalised and broken into as well as threats so regularly that he shut up shop & worked from home on a "word of mouth" style of advertising. They almost broke him; mentally as well as financially.
If it were to transpire that these bloody maniacs in the Middle East were to say "Nuke" an Aussie batallion, blow up the Opera House (not real hard to do judging on yesterdays breach of security) or do some other diabolical act, it is quite reasonable to expect a full on propaganda campaign against "those who sought to veto the UN resolution" (ie) The French, whereupon we could again see the spectacle of one Aussie trying to destroy another Aussies car because he doesn't like where he thinks it was made or because it is a symbol of France. This particularly applies to "D" series cars which are always used as a symbol of all things French.

Our advice, based on experience.

DON'T: Park your car anywhere isolated, dark or in any place vulnerable to attack if you go to any nightclub or entertainment venue as well as shopping centre car parks, particularly at night time. By vulnerable I mean where someone could "accidentally" allow a shopping trolley to roll 30 metres into it or run one up the side of it on the way past.
DON'T: Park your car on the street overnight if it is possible to get it around the back of your or a neighbours yard.
DON'T: Promote the fact that you drive a French car more than is necessary (most of the braindead possibly would think aussiefrogs is an environmental group)
DON'T: Attract attention to your car more than necessary through noise, driving habits & the like.
BE AWARE: That the most likely ones to give your car a scrape is not likely to be some bra-less bird with droopy boobs covered in tatts & a ring in her snout, but some old fart 50+ in a grey cardigan & shorts under his armpits accompanied by a "mail order" bride or a would be yuppie type driving a company Commodore.

Chances are & we can only hope that it doesn't reach this stage, but based on experience we again emphasise, be aware the this scenario has happened before & treat ANYONE acting suspiciously around your car as a potential vandal regardless of their appearance.

Alan S