PRESIDENT Franois Mitterrand has taken an appropriate step in ordering that France's security system be shaken up. The French President is accurate in his assessment that no national interest justified ``such an absurd operation'' as the sinking in a New Zealand port of the Rainbow Warrior, flagship of the environmental organization Greenpeace. To prevent future incidents, Mitterrand must get to the bottom of this one. A thorough probe is necessary to determine all the facts and the ultimate responsibility.
Two French agents are in jail in New Zealand, charged with murder in the sinking, in which one person was killed. Media reports indicate the plot was much broader, and that the ultimate responsibility may lie higher.
No doubt France has been annoyed that Greenpeace has shadowed its nuclear testing, as the organization's representatives have watched other actions disagreed with, such as the killing of baby seals.
But sinking the Rainbow Warrior is no way for a nation with a democratic tradition to behave.