Since last week's "shock" announcement of the AUKUS defense technology sharing pact between Australia, the US and UK - France has been venting its anger and frustration to the world - but has perhaps become even more incensed over what can be described as the collective shrug coming out of Washington and Canberra in return.
President Emmanuel Macron is set to take his complaints directly to the White House after France was cut out of its some $66 billion contract with Australia to deliver submarines, as a phone call with President Joe Biden is set to take place Wednesday. "A conversation between President Macron and Biden is scheduled for today," French cabinet spokesman Gabriel Attal confirmed.
"The leaders intend to discuss under what conditions Australia's decision on the submarines was made," the cabinet spokesman added.
The US will now be providing its Aussie ally with nuclear-powered submarines in the coming years, allowing Australia to be among the handful of nations globally to possess them, which has angered China.
In recent days French officials haven't held back in their fiery rhetoric, calling the deal which they were not informed of until it broke in the press last Thursday a "stab in the back". France's foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian decried the backroom dealing nature of the whole thing as full of "duplicity, disdain and lies."
More broadly France has complained it's been deeply cooperative with allies in the Indo-Pacific region and now feels cut off from strategic planning and coordination. It has also threatened to go so far as to cut EU trade negotiations with Australia short.
At the start of the week Macron's office said:
"We want explanations," Attal said, adding that the US had to answer for "what looks a lot like a major breach of trust."
This after Paris recalled its ambassadors to Washington and Canberra, in what was probably a first in history, given US-France relations had never sunk this low, even after during the Bush administration Paris rejected the US rationale for war in Iraq.