It's really quite flabbergasting behavior for a head of state. Even Bush observed more forms before rushing into war. And whether France has the means to redeem the promises it has made to the rebels remains to be seen. Did Sarkozy even talk to his generals, or was BHL his only authority on the capabilities of the French Air Force?
ADDENDUM: A different point of view in the Times:
In a rare piece of encouraging news for the opposition, France on Thursday became the first country to recognize the opposition leadership and said it would soon exchange ambassadors with the movement in Benghazi. The move put France ahead of the United States and other European powers seeking ways to support the opposition.On the other hand, European partners continue to be unhappy.
France’s stance was viewed as a savvy gesture to show commitment to the uprisings and wave of protests in the Middle East and North Africa after President Nicolas Sarkozy admitted Paris was slow to recognize the strength of the movements in Egypt and Tunisia. It might also position France favorably in future oil deals if the opposition movement somehow manages to expel Colonel Qaddafi and take control of the country.