This is a partial transcript from Your World with Neil Cavuto, March 28, 2003, that was edited for clarity. Click here for complete access to all of Neil Cavuto's CEO interviews.
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NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: It's not just the French, meanwhile, the Germans, too, aren't keen on this Iraq war. And like the French, the Germans say that the U.N. should have a role in a post-war Iraq. With us now, the German ambassador to the U.S., Wolfgang Ischinger.
WOLFGANG ISCHINGER, GERMAN AMBASSADOR TO U.S.: Good to be on your show.
CAVUTO: Now, there still is a lot of hostility between our two countries over this whole Iraq thing. Do you see it easing any bit in Germany toward the U.S.?
ISCHINGER: I see it easing on the German side, and I certainly see it easing on the American side. I read with great pleasure this morning the scorecard issued in The Wall Street Journal by Bob Dole. And if I may quote from that, I was so pleased with that sentence, "through their experience of World War II," from the senator, Bob Dole writes: "the Germans have earned the right to oppose war." And he gives us a gentleman's C. And I think Senator Dole, you have got it exactly right.
CAVUTO: Yeah. But Ambassador, isn't the fact what's helping you is that we hate the French a lot more than we hate you?
ISCHINGER: I think we are not doing the right thing to one another across the Atlantic if we call one another names.
CAVUTO: But Ambassador, aren't your people doing the same thing? They are boycotting a lot of American products from McDonalds hamburgers to a lot of products, jeans. So, what I'm wondering is, aren't you just as bad as you claim we are?
ISCHINGER: I am sending exactly the same message to my friends in Germany. My daughter called me the other day and said, what do you think? Should I follow a call at my school in Berlin to boycott Coke and Pepsi? I said that is the most foolish thing I have heard. So we've got to tone it down and be sensible. It was my government that brokered, earlier today, a tremendous breakthrough at the U.N. in this Oil-for-Food dispute. We have now obtained not only a solution to bring all this money, all this food to the Iraqi people, and I'm so happy that for the first time in many weeks we have been able to also hear President Bush, you know, say very warm words about that success at the U.N.
CAVUTO: Yeah. Here is what sticks in a lot of Americans' craw on this whole issue, that you and France, not individually, sir, but your countries have not been very keen on what's going on in Iraq now. Now let's say our country, with the coalition forces, liberates Iraq, and then the people who have been suffering there. And then you and France just sort of trot in, and, you know, say, all right, we are here to fix things up. A lot of Americans look at that, sir, and say, you've got to be kidding.
ISCHINGER: But that is not what it is all about. Look, we Germans have very little commercial interests in Iraq. And when I say to Americans, you know, if you are smart, make sure that you get a U.N. roof over this Iraq rehabilitation issue, it is not, you know, for German interests. It is, I think, in your interest.
CAVUTO: I'll give you the benefit of the doubt on that, Ambassador. Let's say you don't have any financial interests here, but you are more or less setting up life as it will be in Iraq after we are done, after our men and women have given literally blood and great sacrifice. And now you have had the French, ambassador saying the U.S. and Britain should have no role in whatever we do in Iraq. I don't know the French word for chutzpah, but that's chutzpah.
ISCHINGER: I don't think that that's what we are really saying. Everyone will understand, and I think everyone will appreciate that for as long as it is necessary, of course, the U.S. military needs to make sure that, you know, once victory is achieved, victory is maintained and stability is maintained. But it is an entirely different view in my - from my vantage point, how you are going, you, the United States, are going to obtain the active cooperation of most of the countries of the world who in principle would be willing to help stabilize that region and work with one another and with the U.N. This is an international issue. And it is not about Germany or France gaining, you know, an advantage for a contract. That is not what it is all about.
CAVUTO: Final word on the subject, sir. Thank you very much, Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger in Washington.
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