FRANCE: The Fall of No. 13

While NATO's diplomats were still congratulating themselves on the job done at Lisbon, the pivotal nation in West Europe's defense threw a disheartening-political tantrum. By a 16-vote margin, the French National Assembly overturned Premier Edgar Faure's 40-day-old cabinet.

Faure had staked the fate of his cabinet on a series of money bills designed primarily to finance France's $4 billion rearmament program. His plan: to save $200 million by slashing social services, raise an extra $600 million in direct taxation. He asked for 20 votes of confidence in a row, and fell on the second, a proposal to increase taxes 15%.

In the...

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