Armed with a bronze plaque for the City of Stalingrad, General Charles de Gaulle climbed into his transport plane and zoomed off for Moscow. In Cairo, he dropped down for a chat with Egypt's King Farouk. In Teheran, he dropped down for a chat with Iran's Shah Reza Pahlevi. But at Baku, Russia's big oil city on the Caspian Sea, General de Gaulle ran into General Winter.

Air travel was perilous. General de Gaulle and fellow travelers (among them: Foreign Minister Georges Bidault, Chief of Staff General Alphonse Juin) chafed, killed time at the Azerbaijan Opera House, then caught a train...

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