FRANCE: Breathing Spell

Eighteen years ago this month, a slim, ungainly French officer who had taken refuge in London broadcast a call to arms that jolted his countrymen out of numb acceptance of defeat into a renewed fight against Nazi Germany. Last week, on the anniversary of that historic appeal, its author, still clad in the uniform of a brigadier general, rolled up the Champs-Elysées in an open limousine. 'As he passed, his arms flung wide in a giant V for victory, hundreds of thousands of voices kept up a continuous roar of Vive De Gaulle.

At the Arc de Triomphe,...

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