FRANCE: Young Man for a Crisis

Half a million Parisians, valises in hand, jostled aboard 257 special trains to leave the capital for the biggest Whitsun weekend in history. Newspaper headlines, which intrigued but did not deter the holiday-goers, reported new macabre events in Algeria—and the bustling efforts of politicians to find France a new Premier.

Among the politicians themselves, in France's third week without a government, there emerged at last a desire to end the crisis. Politicians of the left and center, bickering among themselves, became aware of a common peril. By delaying the formation of a...

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