FRANCE: Veil of Mourning

Well before Dienbienphu's day of defeat came, many Frenchmen at home had given up. "Verdun?" said the moderate left-wing newspaper Combat bitterly. "Verdun was a position which could be held at all costs because the entire future depended on it ... But what does Dienbienphu mean for the French fighting man? ... An obsessive, slow and stubborn war. A terrible kind of war for which the French were not made—because they have clear intelligence, and like to know for what they are fighting. They are impulsive, and need to have a little...

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