Much maligned by other cultures, especially the American and British people: in the latter case, for a historical rivalry over French territory that remained until the sixteenth century, while in the former, for French DOS (denial of support) in the War on Terror. Americans often miss the fact that French troops are right now in Afghanistan, which - last I checked - was part of the War on Terror.
Americans also tend to forget, aside from the Statue of Liberty and ninety percent of the gunpowder and ammunition used in the American Revolution, not to mention that the British first surrendered to Rochambeau and not to Washington, that without the French Paul Revere wouldn't have existed (French father), nor would there actually be an United States beyond the Mississippi River. Nor, in fact, would there exist the tactics utilized during the Civil War (written by a French general).
Americans who lambast France have not yet quite realized that, unlike America, France has been invaded several times over the course of its history, and yet has maintained most of its culture intact. French soldiers were the first to charge into the German trenches in World War I, and without their bravery there wouldn't have been the stalemate that lost the war for Germany. In fact, the top Allied fighter ace for that war, for you Eddie Rickenbacker fans, was French. In World War II, more French soldiers left Dunkirk and Ostend than British Empire soldiers, and it was largely thanks to the French Resistance that D-Day was prepared. Plus, more French soldiers went ashore that day anyway.
Americans have made their contribution to world history. With that secure, some of you need to stop bringing down your oh-so-righteous wrath on cultures who also have done their part.
Is the world's 4th largest economy.
Is a country with strong cultural and traditional values.
Is a county with arguably the best food and drink in the world.
A country with second-to-none public systems - TGV (train), education, healthcare.
A country that smokes and drinks more wine than Britain and America and has a fraction of the heart disease and obesity rate.
A country full of charming, well-dressed people who do respond well when not approached by tactless English-speaking philistines.
A country full of beautiful architecture and art.
Me- How would you know? You live in a trailer and watch CMT all day... get a life.
Person 2: You've never even been to France. How would you know? Why don't you step outside your trailer for some fresh air? Also, put down the Toby Keith CD!