Remembering Charles de Gaulle
Washington, D.C. November 10, 2011.
On Thursday, November 9, President Sarkozy traveled to Colombey-les-Deux-Eglises to visit the final resting place of Charles de Gaulle, former President of France and foremost national figurehead of the 20th century. The occasion marked the 41st anniversary of Mr. de Gaulle’s death on the same date in 1970.
General Charles de Gaulle stands as France’s most prominent public figure of the 1900s. A military officer and war hero of the First World War, leader of the Free French movement during the second, and ultimately President of the Republic from 1959 to 1969, Mr. de Gaulle—also referred to in France simply as “The General”—held positions of leadership through a great portion of the major events in modern French history. Indeed, it was Mr. de Gaulle that established the Fifth Republic, or fifth governing regime since the French Revolution in 1789. The political order he established is the same in which France operates today.
- Gen. de Gaulle delivering his Appeal of June 18th (1940).
A patriot and writer, an army commander and political leader, Mr. de Gaulle’s legacy endures as the first among key figures of contemporary France. His contribution to the course of France’s role in the world cannot be overstated.
The Embassy of France wishes to commemorate the anniversary of his passing with respect, honor and gratitude.