FOREIGN RELATIONS: The President and the General

At exactly 4 p.m. the big brown C-54 touched the ground of the Washington airport. The door swung open; out stepped Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle.

The General looked down on a platoon of French air cadets and three squadrons of U.S. airmen, rigid at attention while the 94° heat wilted their khaki and soaked their hats. He stood there for a long moment, looking about him, blinking under the sun of a land he had never seen before. Then slowly Charles de Gaulle moved down the ramp, looking even taller than...