France: Era Ending

The old soldier saved France again.

Under the first impact of the mutiny of the generals in Algiers, even Charles de Gaulle's iron composure seemed momentarily to waver. But in four perilous days, the 70-year-old De Gaulle re-established his imposing authority. France was left badly shaken, but with a sense that long-lived rancors had been purged. Stubborn and proud, De Gaulle once again proved himself the greatest Frenchman of modern times.

The issue was one that France had been half avoiding for years, and it involved nothing less than the end of empire. The...

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