With no knowledge whatsoever of the deployment of national forces in Afghanistan, I am intrigued by the media reports relating to certain national elements 'not being permitted' to serve in certain locations. It is reported that France, Germany, Spain and Italy are not prepared to send their forces to various locations. Is this fact? Bliar is, as ever, out of GB (no problems in GB with health, crime, education, immigration, national infrastructure, scandals et cetera) in Latvia at a NATO conference (why Bliar? why not Foreign Secretary or Defence Secretary?). The nations named above are strong proponents of a 'European Defence Force'. France appears to be opposed in principal to NATO. Is this whole affair a component of a 'European plan' to ditch NATO and replace it with a so-called European Army? If so, God Save Us. For all our perceived faults with the Americans, I want them on our side together with the Canadians. Trust the French? Not on my life. Rant over.