From Dana Milbank in today's Washington Post:
Just before [French President Jacques] Chirac addressed the assembly, Bush and his top aides — Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John D. Negroponte — left the hall. Chirac sat with the French delegation during Bush's speech and politely applauded.
Classy. They could have at least left Negroponte behind — it's his job to be there, after all.
Milbank also notes that Ahmed Chalabi, on hand representing the Iraqi Governing Council, essentially supported the French call for a more rapid transfer of power to the Iraqi people. (The notoriously power-hungry Chalabi seemed to have in mind the Council and, more specifically, himself.)The Bush administration has hailed the Council as a "representative" group and frequently cites its existence and activity as evidence that the occupying coalition is working to nurture democracy in Iraq. But yesterday, when that Council strayed from the coalition party line, an unnamed "administration official" characterized the group very differently:
The Bush administration official said the occupation authorities "are not prepared to transfer sovereignty to 25 unelected people."