A classic technique to avoid an unpleasant debate is to choose the opponents among friends.

For example, would the French questioning of the US neoconservatives’ policy be embodied in the figure of picturesque “philosopher” Bernard-Henri Lévy? Obviously not, since he is one of the ardent promoters of the doctrine “clash of civilizations” which he tries to justify with the staging of Fascislamism in his romantic investigations.

However, in its edition dated January 25, 2006, Le Monde presented the public meeting held by William Kristol and Bernard-Henri Lévy at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of John-Hopkins University, in Washington, as an “emblematic confrontation”.

Boldly entitled “France-États-Unis, le match Lévy-Kristol” [France-United States, the Lévy-Kristol row], the article is based on the ambiguous attitude of the French thinker regarding the invasion against Iraq, which in fact was limited either to a questioning of the operation’s tactical aspects or to ascertain that another country should rather be bombed.

Le Monde tries to make readers accept the postulates of the neoconservatives by having a debate on trends instead of a background discussion.