World: Cool Couve's Greatest Test

TALL, patrician, impeccably tailored in grey suits, elegantly aloof, Maurice Couve de Murville is the epitome of the ideal senior civil servant. In his search for an efficient and obedient administrator to carry out his reforms, General de Gaulle instinctively turned to Couve, reflecting his own reordering of France's priorities. For the past ten years, Couve de Murville has carried out De Gaulle's most cherished policies —those of making France seem great in the world again. Now that De Gaulle intends to direct his attention to healing France's internal ills, he has elevated...

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