Charles de Gaulle

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Charles de Gaulle (1963)
Signature of Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle (1942)

Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle (  [ ʃaʁl də ɡol ] ; born November 22, 1890 in Lille , northern department , † November 9, 1970 in Colombey-les-Deux-Églises , Haute-Marne department ) was a French general and statesman . During the Second World War he led the resistance of Free France against the German occupation. He was then President of the Provisional Government from 1944 to 1946 . In the course of thePlease click to listen!Play In 1958, during the Algerian War , he was entrusted with the formation of a government as prime minister and implemented a constitutional reform that established the Fifth Republic , of which he was president from January 1959 to April 1969. The political ideology of Gaullism , which goes back to him, influences French politics to this day.

Origin and education

De Gaulle's birthplace in Lille

De Gaulle grew up in a Catholic - conservative and at the same time socially progressive intellectual family in Lille : his grandfather was a historian, his grandmother a writer. His father, Henri Charles Alexandre de Gaulle (1848–1932), who taught at various Catholic private schools before founding his own, made him discover the works of Barrès , Bergson , Péguy and Maurras . After all, he also had a preference for the northern French poet Albert Samain . On his father's side, de Gaulle had ancestors who belonged to the old nobility of Normandy and Burgundy. His mother, Jeanne Caroline Marie Maillot (1860–1940), came from a family of wealthy entrepreneurs from Lille with French, Irish (MacCartan), Scottish (Fleming) and German (Kolb) ancestors.

During the Dreyfus affair , the family distanced itself from reactionary nationalist circles and supported Alfred Dreyfus, who had been convicted of anti-Semitic reasons . In 1908 de Gaulle entered the Saint-Cyr military school , which he left in 1912 with a diploma and promotion to Sous-lieutenant (German: lieutenant ). There he also learned German. He was then taken over into the French army . He was assigned to the 33 e régiment d'infanterie (German: 33rd Infantry Regiment ) in Arras , whose commander was Colonel (German: Colonel ) Philippe Pétain since 1910 .

First World War

At the beginning of the First World War he rose from lieutenant to captain . De Gaulle suffered a wound on August 15, 1914 in the first battle near Dinant . He then returned as head of the 7th Company to 33 e régiment d'infantry to the Champagne back -Front. On March 10, 1915, he was wounded again in action. Determined to keep fighting, he defied his superiors by firing on the enemy trenches. Because of this act of disobedience , he was relieved of his duties for eight days. Nevertheless, de Gaulle had distinguished himself as a capable officer and the commander of the 33 e régiment d'infanterie offered him to become his adjutant .

On March 2, 1916, his regiment was attacked by the Germans in the Battle of Verdun while defending the village of Douaumont on the flank of the Fort of Douaumont . De Gaulle's company was almost completely destroyed in the end, the survivors trapped in a ruin. According to an official report, de Gaulle then attempted an escape, was badly wounded by a bayonet stab and was found unconscious. According to another representation of several participants, de Gaulle surrendered to German unity without having attempted to break out.

Memorial plaque on the Wülzburg

In German captivity, he recovered from his wound. During his internment in Germany - initially in Osnabrück and Neisse - after two unsuccessful attempts to escape from the Rosenberg fortress in Kronach, he was taken to a camp in the Ingolstadt fortress specially designed for rebellious officers . In captivity he met Mikhail Tukhachevsky . He also tried to escape from there. Once he came close to Ulm before he was caught again. In 1918 de Gaulle finally came to the Wülzburg near Weißenburg in Bavaria . A “lamentable exile” was the expression he used to describe his mother's fate as a prisoner.

In order to endure the boredom, de Gaulle organized extensive exposés about the state of the current war for his fellow prisoners. De Gaulle's five escape attempts failed not least because of his height of 1.95 m, with which he was quickly noticed. In addition, he supported several partially successful escape attempts by other imprisoned comrades. After the armistice in November 1918 he was released from the Wülzburg . He had bitter memories of the two and a half years of imprisonment and assessed himself as a “homecomer” and a soldier who had done his country no good.

Interwar period

During the Polish-Soviet War of 1919/1920 de Gaulle volunteered for service in the French military mission in Poland and from April 17, 1919 acted as infantry trainer for the newly created Polish army . He wanted to give his military career a boost by working in this remote theater of war, as he had hardly been able to earn any merit as a result of being a prisoner of war during the First World War. Since he was only offered a subordinate post as a consultant to the Prime Minister in France, where he should suggest soldiers and officers for awards, de Gaulle extended his service in Poland and took part in the attack of the Polish army on Kiev in May 1920 ( Polish- Soviet war ). He was promoted to Chief of Staff General Henri Albert Niessels in Warsaw and received the highest Polish military award Virtuti Militari . Some historians mistakenly assumed that the experience in Poland influenced de Gaulle's views on the use of tanks and airplanes and the abandonment of traditional trench warfare . In contrast, his biographer Eric Roussel (* 1951) points out that the concept of using tanks for rapid advances independently of the infantry was not developed until 1927 by the French general Aimé Doumenc .

After his return from Poland, de Gaulle married Yvonne Vendroux in April 1921 and took a position as a teacher at the renowned Saint-Cyr military school in Paris, the cadre of the French army. De Gaulle was materially well protected, but soon came into conflict with his superiors due to his arrogant behavior and unconventional views, which he represented in his lessons. As a result, he was not promoted and in 1925 moved to the personal staff of Marshal Pétain . He is said to have told a friend that he would not re-enter the St. Cyr Military School, except as principal.

De Gaulle's most important task was to prepare two books that were to appear under the name of the famous marshal, but there were also arguments with Pétain about their content and the formerly friendly relationship cooled significantly. Nevertheless, Pétain de Gaulle promoted his career: in September 1927, he took over active command of the French occupation forces in Trier as battalion chief . Pétain also succeeded in ensuring that de Gaulle was allowed to give a series of lectures at the St. Cyr Military School in April 1927, against the will of the headmaster, General Pierre Héring. In 1932 de Gaulle published the content of these lectures under the title Le fil de l'épée . In it he argued very aggressively that the French army had to create the post of commander-in-chief who, in the event of a war, would have sole responsibility and dictatorial powers to determine the fate of the country. However, this view could not be enforced due to the rivalry between the generals on the General Staff and the traditional hostility between the individual branches of the French armed forces.

From 1929 to 1931 de Gaulle took over a command in the French mandate of Lebanon . This post, far from headquarters in Paris, barely served his career and also contradicted his personal views that the colonial armies played only a minor role in the defense of France. Because of the falling out with Pétain, he was not offered a better command. From 1932 to 1937, de Gaulle held a minor role in the Conseil supérieur de la défense nationale (CSND), the National Defense Council, whose task, under the direction of Marshal Pétain, was to prepare the French armed forces for a possible war and to discuss war strategies, armament and Decide on the formation of the army. De Gaulle's role was limited to preparing memoranda for the meetings of the Defense Council. Since he advocated an offensive warfare that ran counter to the views of most generals, his designs were hardly considered.

In 1934, de Gaulle published his most important work to date, a collection of essays entitled Vers l'Armée de Métier ("Towards a Professional Army"), calling for a reorganization of the French army, from a poorly trained volunteer army to a professional army should be converted. This alone is able to protect the country sufficiently in the event of a war and to use modern weapons such as airplanes and tanks effectively. This pamphlet also called for the creation of armored formations for the first time, which would be able to penetrate into enemy territory with fast, motorized formations instead of waiting defensively for their attack behind the Maginot Line . Only in this way could France compensate for its current qualitative superiority and its quantitative inferiority compared to Germany. De Gaulle combined these demands with the idea of ​​placing all armed forces under the command of a single commander-in-chief in the event of war. For this post, he envisaged a man “strong enough to fill his role, skilled at winning the approval of the people, big enough for a big job” - a dictator who would take power in the country. According to historian Eric Roussel, this was a serious mistake, because it made it very difficult to win a majority in parliament for the military reforms: The socialist Prime Minister Léon Blum, for example, feared in 1936 that the formation of a professional army would form the basis for a future coup created. Since de Gaulle could hardly expect support from the General Staff, his project seemed unrealizable.

The military abroad, especially Heinz Guderian in the German General Staff, took note of de Gaulle's ideas with interest and saw themselves strengthened in their own efforts to create a modern tank weapon; de Gaulle's opponents in the French General Staff, however, especially Generals Weygand , Gamelin (1872-1958) and Maurin , firmly rejected the plan, whereupon Marshal Pétain announced in March 1935 that he would not support the reform plans of his former protégé. De Gaulle then developed a political campaign in the press and in parliament in the following years, which earned him the nickname Colonel Motors , and won enough supporters in all political camps that on March 15, 1935 at least parts of the reform in the French House of Representatives were decided and six motorized units were set up, the members of which were supposed to be professional soldiers. On December 25, 1936, de Gaulle was given command of one of these new tank formations, the 507th Panzer Regiment in Metz. In the general staff, however, the reform was watered down and it was determined that these formations should only serve the defensive and operate together with the very slow infantry formations. Many military historians see this as an important reason for the defeat of the French army in May 1940 against the fast German tank armies. Although de Gaulle ultimately failed with his reform concept, the political campaign had the effect of making him known; it opened the way for him to politics and thus also to his role as leader of the French resistance (see Forces françaises libres , Résistance ).

Second World War

General de Gaulle and General Mast, Tunis 1943

When the Second World War broke out, de Gaulle was a Colonel . During the defense against the German offensive , he was given command of the new 4 e division blindée (German: 4th Panzer Division) on May 14, 1940 . On May 17, he counterattacked Montcornet , northeast of Laon, with 200 tanks without air support . He attacked northwards from the Aisne and rolled over columns of German vehicles. It was only on the outskirts of Montcornet that anti-tank guns and 8.8 cm guns managed to stop them. After air raids and a counterattack by the German 10th Panzer Division, the division had to withdraw after heavy losses. Two days later it was used again at Crécy-sur-Serre . There the battle was decided primarily through the use of the air force. De Gaulle was later accused of not having requested air support. On May 28, he was more successful when his armored division forced the Wehrmacht to retreat near Caumont . During the German invasion of France, he was the only French commanding officer who managed to force the Germans to retreat. On June 1, he had the temporary rank of Général de brigade (German: Brigadier General ).

On June 6th, Prime Minister Paul Reynaud appointed him Undersecretary of State for National Defense and in charge of coordination with Great Britain. As a member of the cabinet, he rejected the armistice , left France on June 15, 1940 and crossed over to Great Britain. There he agreed with Winston Churchill on June 16 that the British-French cooperation against Germany should be continued. When he returned to Bordeaux , the provisional seat of the French government, that evening , Marshal Philippe Pétain was preparing to take power legally. De Gaulle disapproved of the policy of Pétain, who was ready to sign the armistice with the German Reich , and rejected Pétain's actions as illegitimate. With 100,000 gold francs from a secret Paul Reynauds fund , he flew back from Bordeaux to London on the morning of June 17, 1940 .

Appeal June 18

Text of a de Gaulle appeal of 3 August 1940, published in Great Britain (poster)

While Philippe Pétain announced that he would agree a ceasefire with Germany , Prime Minister Winston Churchill allowed de Gaulle to speak to the French people through the BBC . In it he called on French officers and soldiers, engineers and skilled workers in the arms industry in the United Kingdom to follow him, and implored that the defeat was not final (“Whatever happens, the flame of French resistance must and will not go out do not go out "). He stressed the importance of the support from Britain and the United States. In France the roll call could first be heard on June 18, 1940 at 7 p.m. It was reprinted in the newspapers of the as yet unoccupied southern France and repeatedly broadcast on the BBC in the following days . The appeal is considered de Gaulle's greatest speech, Régis Debray writes, even if de Gaulle's appeal "has not changed the face of the world, thanks to him France has at least preserved its own."

The British cabinet had previously proposed to the French interior minister, Georges Mandel , that he should go to England and make an appeal to the French himself. Through his repeated warnings about the threats posed by the German Reich - and in contrast to his friend and former Prime Minister Léon Blum  - Mandel had the character of a statesman. Mandel, however, refused to leave France in order not to face accusations of desertion (he was Jewish as well as Blum) and recommended that the task be given to de Gaulle.

Free France

Charles de Gaulle and Winston Churchill in Marrakech on January 13, 1944

On June 25, 1940, de Gaulle founded the Committee for Free France (France libre) in London and became head of the "Free French Armed Forces" ( Forces françaises libres , FFL) and the "National Defense Committee". Thereupon de Gaulle was sentenced to death in absentia by the council of war of the Vichy government in August 1940 for high treason .

Most states recognized the Vichy regime, Marshal Pétains, as the legitimate government of France. Churchill initially tried diplomatically for the Vichy regime, but then supported de Gaulle and left the French navy at anchor in Mers-el-Kébir in North Africa under the command of Pétain's Naval Minister Admiral François Darlan in operation on July 3, 1940 Destroy the catapult .

As one of the first French protectorates, Lebanon was removed from the control of the Vichy regime by Allied troops in September 1941 . When the "Free France" came to power afterwards, de Gaulle benefited from his contacts from his service in Beirut 1929–1931. General Fuad Schihab , who later became President, formed a volunteer association of 20,000 men, who at the time made up a considerable part of the troop contingent at the beginning of the Free France campaign.

During the war, several French colonial possessions, primarily in Africa, including Cameroon and Chad , and later from 1942 Diego Suarez in Madagascar and Dakar in French West Africa, submitted to Free France, which was organized by de Gaulle and ruled by his Comité National Français . In particular, he made sure that France was always present in the Allied camp through its Free French Armed Forces (FFL), which continued the fight on various fronts. Among other things, thanks to Colonel Passy , Pierre Brossolette and especially Jean Moulin, he promoted the Resistance. With the transformation to France combattante (fighting France), he emphasized the political unity of France libre with the Résistance intérieure .

Since June 1940 he relied on Free France and continuously defended the interests of France during the war and for the time afterwards, which culminated in his saying "France has no friends, it only has interests." With this he quoted a sentence by William known at the time Ewart Gladstone (1809-1898). He was a four-time British Prime Minister and one of the most important British politicians in the second half of the 19th century.

De Gaulle was able to persuade Churchill to sign the Accord de Checkers (August 7, 1940), according to which Great Britain should preserve the integrity of all French possessions and the "integral restoration and independence and the greatness of France". The British government also offered to finance the spending of Free France; But de Gaulle insisted that the sums were repayable advances and not donations that would later have cast a shadow over him and the independence of his organization. The advances were paid back before the end of the war.

Despite the contracts between Churchill and de Gaulle, relations were strained. With a view to the post-war order, Churchill described de Gaulle in telegrams as “the greatest single enemy for peace in Europe” and “France's worst enemy”. Churchill criticized that de Gaulle “wants to play as the savior of France without contributing a single soldier to the operation” and that de Gaulle's behavior and personality are the main obstacles to relations between France and the Anglo-Americans. Churchill only informed de Gaulle of the invasion of Normandy five days before the landing.

Relations with Franklin D. Roosevelt were also troubled; the American president had no confidence in de Gaulle. De Gaulle accused the Americans of arrogance and said: "I am too poor to bow down." Roosevelt accused de Gaulle of dictatorial intentions.


General Charles de Gaulle's speech to the people of Cherbourg , August 20, 1944

Despite his exclusion from the Anglo-American landing in North Africa ( Operation Torch ) by Roosevelt and, above all, despite its support for Admiral François Darlan and General Henri Giraud that the after landing in North Africa Vichy regime with American acquiescence in Algiers continue de Gaulle managed to gain a foothold in Algiers in May 1943. From there he created the French Committee for National Liberation (CFLN) to unite the political directions of liberated France, and was soon at its head. The CFLN took on the name ' Gouvernement provisoire de la République Française ' (GPRF) in June 1944 and entered liberated Paris on August 25, 1944 , where a public triumphal procession led by de Gaulle on the avenue des Champs-Élysées the next day took place.

De Gaulle succeeded in preventing an Allied military government for the occupied territories in France and quickly transferring power to govern the liberated areas to the Forces françaises libres . In large parts of the population he was celebrated as a liberator, although he had not played a military role in the landing in Normandy and the subsequent advance of the Allies.

When de Gaulle did not first thank the fighters of the Forces françaises de l'intérieur (FFI) for their support after the invasion of Paris , but instead thanked the gendarmes (who had only changed sides on the last day), he upset many resists . With this, too, he wanted to avoid any conflict among the armed French that would have given the Allies an occasion for an occupation government. At the same time, with his return to the War Ministry, he declared the continuity of the Third Republic and the illegitimacy of the Vichy regime . This is how de Gaulle said when the chairman of the Conseil National de la Resistance, Georges Bidault , asked him to proclaim the republic after entering Paris:

“The republic has never ceased to exist. Free France, fighting France and the French Committee of National Liberation embodied them one after another. Vichy has always been and remains null and void. I am the President of the Government of the Republic. Why should I call them out? "

The Vichy regime fled to Sigmaringen when the occupation forces of the Wehrmacht had to withdraw as a result of Operation Dragoon . At the same time, de Gaulle uncompromisingly enforced the authority of the Provisional Government over the organizations of the Resistance; he disbanded their units on August 28, 1944 and told their commanders that they now had to return to civilian life.

De Gaulle did not want to leave the purge action against French collaborators to the victorious powers, but rather regarded this as an original task of the French. On April 4, 1944, the CFLN accepted two Communist commissioners. On November 27, 1944, de Gaulle pardoned the General Secretary of the PCF Maurice Thorez , who had deserted to the Soviet Union at the beginning of the war ; In February 1945, at the Yalta Conference, France was recognized by the three great allies as one of the future occupying powers of Germany. At the beginning of December 1944, de Gaulle signed a 20-year aid and friendship treaty with the USSR . In January 1945 there was a dispute between de Gaulle and the USA regarding the defense of Strasbourg during a German counterattack .

De Gaulle presented his visions of the political organization of a democratic state on June 16, 1946 in Bayeux . These reforms particularly affected a modern state social security system and also included women's suffrage .

Fourth republic

Immediate post-war period

Already on May 16, 1945 de Gaulle reached the inclusion of France in the Security Council of the United Nations as a permanent member. After the war he was appointed President of the Provisional Government on November 13, 1945, but resigned on January 20, 1946 after disagreements with the Social Democrats and Communists, who had dominated parliament since the October elections, because he had adopted the revised Constitution of the Fourth Republic disapproved. He demanded a stronger position for the president in the constitution, while the majority in the national assembly wanted to concentrate power in parliament. When this did not happen, he founded a political movement, the Rassemblement du Peuple Français (RPF) in 1947 , to push through a new constitution. When this failed, he retired to Colombey-les-Deux-Églises in 1953 . In 1947 he gave two important speeches: on April 7, 1947 in Strasbourg and on July 27, 1947 in Rennes.

Foundation of the Fifth Republic (1958)

Following the failure of the Fourth Republic in French Indochina , a constitutional crisis broke out in the course of the Algerian War in 1958: Since they saw Algeria's remaining with France threatened, leading military officials began the military coup in Algiers on May 13, which soon saw the De Gaulle's return to power was called for. Those around him were in contact with the putschists, and on May 19 he himself announced that he was available for political office.

After the putschists in the Opération Résurrection occupied the island of Corsica on May 24th and thereby threatened mainland France, President René Coty and the parliament agreed to de Gaulle's terms: on June 1, 1958, he became Prime Minister with far-reaching powers of emergency for six Months, with the suspension of Parliament and with the right to draft a new constitution.

In September the people adopted the new constitution in a referendum with the presidential system favored by de Gaulle with 83%, creating the Fifth Republic . All colonies - Algeria was not considered a colony, but part of the republic - could choose whether they wanted to take part in the vote or choose their immediate independence - without any further French support. With the exception of Guinea , all colonies took part in the referendum. In November de Gaulle won the parliamentary elections and received a comfortable majority. On December 21st he was elected President of the French Republic by indirect election with 78% of the vote .

Presidency of the Republic

De Gaulle took over the functions of President of the Republic on January 8, 1959. He took drastic measures to revitalize the country, in particular the introduction of the new franc (equivalent to 100 old francs). He rejected the dominance of the USA and the Soviet Union in the international scene and, with the establishment of the Force de frappe (first nuclear weapon test on February 13, 1960), asserted France as an independent great power, which was equipped with its own nuclear power that ultimately exceeded that of Great Britain .

But it wasn't just about politics. In order to inspire the French to demonstrate the national greatness of France to the apolitical among them, he had z. B. reorganized top-class sport, used the famous mountaineer Maurice Herzog, a national symbol for successful sporting performance as minister of sport, centralized the selection of talent and the promotion of top-class sport, had top athletes and state amateurs financed and ensured that social standards and top-level sport organization were in harmony.

As a founding member of the European Economic Community (EEC), de Gaulle twice - on January 14, 1963 and December 19, 1967 - vetoed Britain's accession . Ultimately, Great Britain did not join the EC until January 1, 1973. In April 1962, de Gaulle replaced Prime Minister Michel Debré with Georges Pompidou . In September 1962, de Gaulle proposed that the constitution be amended to elect the President of the Republic by direct election. The reform of the constitution came into force despite opposition from parliament. In October, the French National Assembly voted in favor of a motion of no confidence in the Pompidou government, but de Gaulle refused the resignation offered by the Prime Minister and decided to dissolve the National Assembly. From the new election in November 1962, the Gaullist parliamentary majority emerged stronger. The direct presidential elections took place on December 5 and 19, 1965; in the runoff election de Gaulle against François Mitterrand , de Gaulle received 55.2% of the vote. His opponents accused him of his nationalism and the weakened economic situation in France.

Foreign policy

De Gaulle and Adenauer , 1958
State visit to Bonn in September 1962
De Gaulle and Franz Josef Strauss , 1962
De Gaulle 1963
De Gaulle at the inauguration of the Palais Beauharnais in Paris (1968)

De Gaulle initially spoke out in favor of a unity of the mother country and the overseas territories, and the constitution of the Fifth Republic , which was largely shaped by him, did not provide for independence. In September 1959, under the influence of the Algerian war , a constitutional amendment enabled the former colonies to gain independence under continued French influence within the framework of the Communauté française . The burden of Algeria ("boulet algérien") considerably reduced French maneuverability. On March 18, 1962, he signed the treaties of Évian in Évian-les-Bains ; these guaranteed Algeria the right to a referendum on independence. This took place on April 8, 1962. The policy of “national independence” (“l'indépendance nationale”) and the solution of “American paternalism” was then reinforced.

Internationally, de Gaulle further promoted the independence of France: In 1962 he emphatically advocated a "Europe of Fatherlands" (see also intergovernmentalism , sovereignty ) under the leadership of France, to which he joined the EEC states (excluding Great Britain) Poland , Czechoslovakia , Hungary , Romania , Bulgaria and Greece wanted to win. In return, he accepted the resignation of Prime Minister Michel Debré (1912–1996).

In his German policy in 1945 he put the Ruhr question , which led to the establishment of the Ruhr Statute in 1948/1949 , on the international political agenda. After his government had initially pursued the goal of separating the Saarland as well as the Rhineland and Westphalia including the Ruhr area from Germany, he then, together with the other Western Allies, exerted great influence on the formation of a Federal Republic of Germany integrated into the West . On September 9, 1962, in Ludwigsburg , he gave a highly acclaimed speech to German youth in German. It is considered a milestone in Franco-German relations and a decisive step on the way to the Franco-German friendship treaty (January 1963).

De Gaulle condemned the US military aid to the Republic of Vietnam against the Việt Minh- led communist rebellion of the People's Republic of Vietnam and called on the US to withdraw its troops in the interests of a lasting peace. In 1967 he condemned the Israeli counterstrike against the Egyptian blockade of the Strait of Tiran during the Six Day War (June 1967) and the permanent occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank . Under de Gaulle, France, once Israel's closest ally , moved closer to the Arab world, especially Egypt, but also Syria and Lebanon , imposed an arms embargo on Israel, did not have the Mirage fighter planes that had already been paid for, and from then on left it to the Americans, Supplying Israel with weapons. The increasing Israeli operations in what had been pro-western Lebanon from 1967 onwards also contributed to de Gaulle's attitude . De Gaulle had lived from 1929–1931 (see above) in Lebanon, which was then administered by French as a League of Nations mandate, and was personally closely connected to numerous personalities of the Lebanese upper class, who had been Francophone for centuries, some of whom supported him from the beginning in the Free France campaign from 1941–1945 had. Until the presidency of Jacques Chirac (1995–2007), the pro-Arab orientation of French foreign policy, critical of Israel, was a Gaullist constant.

In 1958, de Gaulle refused to place the French Mediterranean fleet under NATO command. In 1964, de Gaulle ended the American project of a multilateral nuclear force (MLF), which, under international control, was to be used to protect Europe. Two years later, de Gaulle called for structural changes to NATO and threatened to leave. After an ultimatum in which he demanded the withdrawal of NATO troops or their submission to French command, France withdrew from the integrated military command structure of NATO in 1966, but remained a member of NATO. At the same time, the European NATO headquarters SHAPE was relocated from Rocquencourt to Mons ( Hainaut , Belgium).

On December 14, 1965, de Gaulle declared: “Of course you can jump on the chair like a kid and shout: 'Europe, Europe, Europe!' But that leads to nothing and means nothing. ”Nevertheless, it was Europe that set the framework for its ambitions, a Europe that itself stretches from the“ Atlantic to the Urals ”, drawing a line through the provisional Iron Curtain .

Indeed, the mainstay of French foreign policy was moving closer to the continent's other center of gravity, Germany, while turning their backs on the “Anglo-Saxons”. His trusting relationship with Konrad Adenauer and his strategic orientation prevented a repetition of Georges Clemenceau's policy , which had poisoned France's already difficult relationship with Germany after the First World War. De Gaulle and Adenauer jointly pursued the Franco-German friendship , which was promoted with a Franco-German youth organization and numerous encounters. It culminated in the Élysée Treaty on January 22, 1963.

De Gaulle systematically tried to prevent the United Kingdom from joining the European Economic Community . In addition to the fear that the special relationship with the USA could turn Great Britain into an American “ Trojan horse ”, the possible loss of French hegemony in the European Community and the replacement of French as the working language in Brussels are said to have played a role. At the funeral of Adenauer, de Gaulle had to be formally forced by the German Federal President to shake hands with the American President after they had previously demonstratively avoided each other. De Gaulle was anti-communist. However, since his return to power in 1958, he assumed that there was no threat of a Russian invasion. He therefore propagated the normalization of relations with these "temporary" regimes. The recognition of communist China from January 27, 1964, went in this direction, as did his trip to the USSR in June 1966.

De Gaulle created the Communauté française (German French Community), a counterpart to the British Commonwealth of Nations , with the Communauté Française determining foreign, defense and monetary policy. All former colonies held referendums confirming their founding. Only in Guinea did the majority decide differently. Members became Dahomey , Côte d'Ivoire , Gabon , Congo , Madagascar , Mauritania , Niger , Upper Volta , Chad , Senegal , Mali , Togo and Cameroon . The Communauté Financière d'Afrique des CFA francs also played a major role, with the French central bank keeping the parity of the CFA to the FF stable for decades. Through cooperation agreements, de Gaulle secured strong French influence. Part of the Communauté Française formed the West African Customs Union (UDAO). In 1966 it was expanded to become the Customs and Economic Union (UDEAO). De Gaulle also created further opportunities for influence with the establishment of the state predecessor company of Elf Aquitaine , ERAP , which, under the influence of its long-time boss, the former French defense minister and founder of the foreign intelligence service DGSS, Pierre Guillaumat , the French intelligence service provided excellent cover and immense financial resources for its activities in Africa.

Mainly in foreign policy, Gaullist thinking about the essence of the nation was expressed: "a certain idea of ​​France". De Gaulle drew his strength from knowledge of the history of France . According to him, the weight of this story was such that it gave France a special position in the midst of the concert of nations. For him and for many French people, England and the USA were only offspring of France. He also judged the institution of the UN as ridiculous and called it “the thing” (“le machin”), which did not prevent him from taking France's permanent seat on the UN Security Council .

Petit-Clamart assassination

Jean-Marie Bastien-Thiry , a lieutenant colonel in the French army personally promoted by de Gaulle, no longer agreed with his Algeria policy. With the support of the Organization de l'armée secrète (OAS, Organization of the Secret Army ), he therefore decided to kidnap the president or - if kidnapping turned out to be impossible - to kill him. The assassination attempt at Petit-Clamart took place on August 22, 1962 at an intersection in Petit-Clamart near Paris. It no longer exists today. The attack failed because the eleven assassins overlooked the agreed signal in the dark and opened fire too late. The presidential vehicle, a Citroën DS , was hit by several bullets. One bullet missed the presidential couple by just a few centimeters. "That would have made a nice, clean ending," commented de Gaulle as he looked at the hole in the car.

The OAS continued its activities after the failed attack. To this day, de Gaulle's Algeria policy is sometimes highly controversial. Bastien-Thiry was arrested after a brief trial, sentenced to death and at 11 March 1963 was executed . His captured accomplices got away with sometimes lesser sentences. De Gaulle had refused a pardon for Bastien-Thiry.

The assassination attempt at Petit-Clamart served Frederick Forsyth as a template for his 1971 novel The Jackal . The material was filmed in 1973 .

About a year earlier, on September 8, 1961, an assassination attempt on de Gaulle had failed with the assassination attempt in Pont-sur-Seine . The attackers had also declared that they belonged to the OAS.

Nuclear force

Convinced of the strategic importance of the nuclear weapon, de Gaulle engaged the country in protest of the opposition for the costly development of the force de frappe , by scoffers who saw them only as a "bomber" ("bombinette"), as "farce de frappe" designated. De Gaulle's answer was: “In ten years we will have something with which we can kill 80 million Russians. I do not believe that you attack a people who have the ability to kill 80 million Russians, even if you could kill 800 million French, provided there were 800 million French. ”In 1960/61 he arranged for four in the Algerian desert to do so above-ground nuclear weapons tests ; thousands of Algerians suffered damage to their health. From 1966 until the end of his tenure in 1969, he arranged for ten more on atolls in the Pacific (eight of them on the Mururoa - and three on the Fangataufa atoll).

John F. Kennedy had for the French support in Berlin and the Cuban Missile Crisis promised aid to the nuclear issue, but broke his promise until his murder is not one. The nuclear issue weighed on Franco-American relations throughout the 1960s. It was only in 1969 that Richard Nixon became the first American president who was clearly pro-French. De Gaulle shared with him his disdain for ideologies, multilateral treaties and institutions. Nixon first circumnavigated the binding American legislature on the nuclear issue before officially opening the way to Franco-American nuclear cooperation. Most of the work was done. On August 24, 1968, France managed to detonate a hydrogen bomb without US help ( Opération Canopus ).

The British, whose nuclear force was closely linked to that of the Americans, took it as a slap when de Gaulle declared France the third nuclear power of the West. The force de frappe consisted of land-based medium-range missiles on the Plateau d'Albion (now closed), sea-based medium-range missiles on submarines and atomic bombs that could be dropped from aircraft. Not least in order to remain independent from the two superpowers in this area too, he pushed the construction of his own French combat aircraft (the Dassault Mirage III ) and civil aircraft (the Caravelle ) and signed the Airbus contract with Germany to develop the A300 wide-body aircraft . The European launch vehicle technology , the civilian branch of which was ELDO with the Europa missiles , was promoted by de Gaulle in this context.

While François Mitterrand resisted the nuclear program violently, de Gaulle entrusted the supervision of the project to his brother Jacques Mitterrand .

Conversion of the dollar treasure

At the suggestion of the French economist Jacques Rueff (1896–1978), monetary policy under de Gaulle was heavily geared towards gold . In February 1965, de Gaulle announced that he would exchange currency reserves in US dollars for gold under the Bretton Woods system . By the summer of 1966, France increased the gold content of its reserves to 86 percent. In contrast to other countries that exchanged dollars for gold during the same period, including Germany, France did not leave the gold in the vaults of the Federal Reserve , but insisted on shipping the gold bars to France so that they would not be “accessible to a stranger Power given up ”. However , de Gaulle did not achieve his goal of returning to the gold standard .

The Québec Libre Affair

De Gaulle wanted to take part in the nation's 100th anniversary in Canada and the 1967 World's Fair , but provoked federal outrage when he shouted in Montreal in front of a crowd of 100,000 Québécois: “Long live free Québec!” (“Vive le Québec libre! ”), accompanied by general, great applause. This sparked a government crisis in Canada. In the wake of de Gaulle's speech, in which he said, among other things, "I will tell you a little secret that you will not tell anyone else: on my way I saw an atmosphere that reminded me of the liberation," the Canadian explained Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson his words for "unacceptable". De Gaulle replied that the word "unacceptable" was itself unacceptable, canceled the scheduled visit to Ottawa and flew back to France from Montréal. De Gaulle said in his speech the French Canadians to help "lift themselves" because "after a century of repression that followed for them after the English conquest, they now also the second century [...] in their own country neither Brought freedom, equality, fraternity ”. The New York Times rated this a "gross act of Gaullist interference in Canada's internal affairs" and a "significant escalation of the dispute that began during General de Gaulle's visit to Canada," according to a poll by L'Express , 56 percent of those questioned condemned it Residents of Paris the appearance of de Gaulle.

May 1968

The May riots of 1968 were another challenge. On May 24th, two weeks after the riots began, de Gaulle first commented on the protesters' demands on radio and television and vaguely promised to launch a referendum on reforms. At the same time, the demonstrators demanded de Gaulle's resignation. On May 29, de Gaulle secretly traveled to Baden-Baden , Germany, the purpose of this trip is unclear. The historian Norbert Frei considers a meeting with General Jacques Massu , which is often cited as a possible explanation, to be unlikely; he rather assumes that “the state crisis had turned into a nervous crisis at that moment”.

After his return to Colombey-les-Deux-Églises , de Gaulle announced new elections in a radio speech on May 30, 1968: “As holder of national and republican legitimacy, I have been considering all eventualities, without exception, that enable me for 24 hours would get them. I have made up my mind. In the present circumstances, I will not retreat. I am not going to change the prime minister who deserves recognition from all of us. I am dissolving the National Assembly today. I instruct the prefects who have become or have become commissioners over the people to prevent subversion at any time and any place. As for the legislative elections, they will take place within the time limits set by the Constitution, at least until it is heard that the whole of the French people are being silenced by preventing them from expressing themselves and, at the same time, from living, by the same measures trying to keep students from studying, teachers from teaching, workers from working. These means are intimidation, poisoning and tyranny, wielded for a long time in succession by organized groups and a party that is a totalitarian enterprise, even if there are rivals in this regard. ”The latter targeted the Communist Party of France .

After the previous, disappointing speeches, his supporters seemed to rediscover the de Gaulle of the great days: A demonstration was organized for May 30, 1968, which, according to the organizers, was attended by a million participants, according to the police headquarters by 300,000 participants. The June 1968 elections were a great success for the Gaullists , who received 358 out of 487 seats. On July 13, 1968, Georges Pompidou was replaced as Prime Minister by Maurice Couve de Murville .

The referendum on regional reform and resignation

De Gaulle on March 2, 1969 with Richard Nixon and his cabinet

In February 1969, de Gaulle announced that he would hold a referendum on reforming the regional administration and the Senate in the spring of 1969 . As in 1962, a constitutional amendment was to be carried out without the participation of the National Assembly . In April de Gaulle announced that if the referendum were rejected, he would resign immediately. The referendum thus took on the character of a vote for or against de Gaulle. As a result, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing and his party of the Républicains indépendants joined the socialists and called for the referendum to be rejected. Although the actual aim of regional reform was very popular among the population, the referendum was rejected with 52.46% of the vote and de Gaulle announced his resignation from the office of President of the Republic shortly after midnight on April 28, 1969.

The President of the Senate , Alain Poher , duly acted as interim president until the new election in June 1969 . On June 20, 1969, the Gaullist Georges Pompidou , who on June 15 had won the runoff election for president against the social Christian Democrat Alain Poher, succeeded Charles de Gaulle.

Death and burial

After his resignation, de Gaulle spent a month in Ireland (from where he chose by letter) and then retired to Colombey-les-Deux-Églises , where he worked on his (unfinished) book Mémoires d'espoir . After a trip to Spain in June 1970, Charles de Gaulle died on November 9, 1970 in Colombey-les-Deux-Églises of an aortic aneurysm rupture .

Monument on the height of Colombey-les-Deux-Églises
The grave
Mural in the Office de Tourisme of Colombey

His will came from the time of the funeral of General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny in January 1952. After his death, he was appropriated by official France and its politicians in a way that de Gaulle found abhorrent. Therefore, he regulated the modalities of his funeral in detail:

  • "I want to be buried in Colombey."
  • “Neither politician nor minister at my funeral!” (The finance minister Valéry Giscard d'Estaing nevertheless took part with the argument that he was not coming as a minister, but as a simple Frenchman. From 1974 to 1981 he was president and thus successor to de Gaulle). "Merely the Compagnons of Liberation " (which included Jacques Chaban-Delmas and André Malraux ).
  • “On my grave: 'Charles de Gaulle, 1890–19…'. Nothing else "

On November 12, 1970, De Gaulle was buried in Colombey at the side of his daughter Anne. The coffin was transferred from the La Boisserie family estate to the local church on a Panhard EBR armored car . About 350 Compagnons de la Liberation attended the ceremony .

Also on November 12, 1970, a great requiem for foreign heads of state, presidents and kings took place in the Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral . Present were US President Richard Nixon , Soviet President Nikolai Podgorny , British Prime Minister Edward Heath , Josip Broz Tito , Indira Gandhi , Fidel Castro , Olof Palme , Emperor Haile Selassie , the Shah of Iran , King Bhumibol of Thailand , Juliana Queen of the Netherlands , King Baudouin of Belgium , the British heir to the throne Prince Charles , the Prince of Monaco and the Grand Duke of Luxembourg . In addition to the German Federal President Gustav Heinemann , the former Federal Chancellors Ludwig Erhard and Kurt Georg Kiesinger also took part.


Numerous public streets and buildings in France bear his name. In particular the Place Charles-de-Gaulle in Paris and also the Paris-Roissy - Charles de Gaulle Airport . Its name was also given to the currently last French aircraft carrier , the Charles de Gaulle . His house in Colombey, the Boisserie, is now a museum, as is the house where he was born in Lille.

De Gaulle in the judgment of contemporaries and posterity

Churchill described de Gaulle as a "figure of real size". In his obituary in the weekly newspaper Die Zeit , Theo Sommer wrote that de Gaulle was a man of the 17th or 18th century who missed the future because he wanted to “restore the past”. Domestically, he said he was unable to cope with the country's problems with “old Franconian mythology” alone, his foreign policy turned out to be an inconsistent sequence of empty gestures, and his eccentric appearance in Quebec could only be ridiculed. Sommer writes: “All in all, Charles de Gaulle did not achieve much that lasted. His claim was greater than his strength, and there was something manic about the way he made that claim. (...) It is obvious that he was full of failed ideas. However, no one denies that his mistakes also had their stature. ”The leftist revolutionary theorist and philosopher Régis Debray described De Gaulle as“ super-astute ”because many of his predictions (from the fall of communism to the reunification of Germany) came true after his death.

The German historian Ernst Weisenfeld saw great value retention in all of de Gaulle's important decisions in his ten years in office. From the direct election of the president to nuclear weapons, the exit from NATO and independent foreign policy, de Gaulle's big decisions have become part of the program of all major parties even after he left the political stage. The historian Brian Crozier judged on the other hand, "de Gaulle's fame exceeds his achievements". The historian Wilfried Loth, on the other hand, underscores de Gaulle's historical merits, which, however, are overshadowed by his self-stylization as the “savior of the nation” and his criticism: “He provided a focal point for the diverse opposition to the integration of France into Hitler's Europe, and with it played a leading role in the formation of a new democratic consensus with the liberation of France. It strengthened the political system's ability to act and decisively advanced the modernization of the economy. [...] After all, he gave important impulses for the development of an independent Europe and for overcoming communist party rule in its eastern part ”.

According to polls, 70 percent of the French population consider de Gaulle to be the most important figure in all of French history. Above all, the resolute resistance to National Socialist Germany and the constitution of the Fifth Republic are mentioned as lasting achievements of de Gaulle.


Charles de Gaulle with his daughter Anne

Charles had three brothers and a sister:

  • Xavier de Gaulle (1887–1955), prisoner of war, then resident during the Second World War, he is the father of Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz .
  • Marie-Agnès de Gaulle (1889–1982)
  • Jacques de Gaulle (1893–1946), disabled in 1926 after an encephalitis .
  • Pierre de Gaulle (1897–1959), resident, politician, then company administrator.

Charles de Gaulle married Yvonne Vendroux on April 7, 1921 (born May 22, 1900 in Calais , † November 8, 1979 in Paris ). The marriage has three children:

The Front National -Politician Charles de Gaulle (born September 25, 1948 in Dijon) is his grandson.


As President of France, Charles de Gaulle was ex officio co-prince of Andorra .


  • La discorde chez l'ennemi. 1924.
  • Histoire des troupes du Levant. Written by Majors de Gaulle and Yvon, in collaboration with Colonel de Mierry on the final version. 1931.
  • Le fil de l'épée. 1932.
  • Vers l'armée de métier. 1934.
    • France's shock army: the professional army, tomorrow's solution. Voggenreiter, Potsdam 1935.
  • La France et son Armée. 1938.
  • Trois études (Rôle historique des places fortes; Mobilization économique à l'étranger; Comment faire une armée de métier) suivi par le Mémorandum du 26 janvier 1940. 1945.
Euro commemorative coin from 2010 for the roll call of June 18, 1940
  • Memoires de Guerre.
    • Volume I - L'Appel, 1940-1942. 1954.
    • Volume II - L'Unité, 1942-1944. 1956.
    • Volume III - Le Salut, 1944-1946. 1959.
  • Mémoires d'Espoir.
    • Volume I - Le Renouveau, 1958–1962. 1970.
    • Volume II - L'effort, 1962 ... 1971.
  • Discours et Messages. 1970.
    • Volume I - Pendant la Guerre, 1940-1946.
    • Volume II - Dans l'attente, 1946-1958.
    • Volume III - Avec le Renouveau, 1958–1962.
    • Volume IV - Pour l'Effort, 1962-1965.
    • Volume V - Vers le Terme, 1966-1969.



  • Charles de Gaulle - I am France! (OT: Le Grand Charles. ) TV feature film in 2 parts, France, 103 min. And 105 min., Script and direction: Bernard Stora, production: Arte , German first broadcast: May 9, 2008, background and synopsis by arte .
  • Wolfgang Schoen: Four warlords against Hitler - Charles de Gaulle: Committed to fight. TV Schoenfilm, D 2001.

Web links

Commons : Charles de Gaulle  - album with pictures, videos and audio files
Wikisource: Charles de Gaulle  - Sources and full texts (French)


  1. ^ Family genealogy
  2. Alain Larcan "Les passions littéraires du général de Gaulle,"
  3. Aidan Crawley: De Gaulle . The Literary Guild, London 1969, pp. 13-16 .
  4. 50 years ago: de Gaulle's speech to German youth. Interview Deutschlandfunk
  5. Review: Non-fiction book: Courage to power . In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung . February 3, 1999, ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed August 6, 2017]).
  6. ^ Fondation Charles de Gaulle: Charles de Gaulle's biographical chronological table
  7. a b Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 51.
  8. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 52f.
  9. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 62.
  10. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 61 ff.
  11. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 65ff., P. 71f.
  12. a b c Alexandre Najjar: De Gaulle et le Liban. 4 volumes (1. Vers L'Orient Complique 1929–1931; 2. De la guerre à l'Indépendance (1941–1943); 3. A l'Elysée [de Gaulle's relations with Presidents Schihab and Helou, 1960s] ; 4. L'Embargo [break with Israel 1968]). Editions Terre du Liban, Beirut ( entry on the Chemins de Mémoire website of the French Ministry of Defense )
  13. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 71ff.
  14. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 76f. De Gaulle summarized his work at the CSDN in his memoirs as follows: “From  1932 to 1937, je me trouvais melè […] à toute l'activité politique, technique et administrative, pour tout ce qui concernait la défense du pays.  »
  15. Jean Doise, Maurice Vaïsse: Diplomacy et outil militaire 1871-1991. Paperback edition. Éditions du seuil, Paris 1991, p. 375 f.
  16. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 92f., P. 100.
  17. Eric Roussel: De Gaulle. Volume I: 1890-1945. Éditions Gallimard, Paris 2002, quoted from the paperback edition: Editions Perrin, p. 93f., P. 104f.
  18. a b Joseph Hanimann: De Gaulle's Erbe: Der Verrückte des 18. Juni. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung . June 18, 2010, accessed June 4, 2013 .
  19. ^ A b Rolf Löffler: His greatest speech. In: Tages-Anzeiger . June 18, 2010, accessed June 4, 2013 .
  20. ^ Final sentence of the appeal of June 18, 1940. Original: “Quoi qu'il arrive, la flamme de la résistance française ne doit pas s'éteindre et ne s'éteindra pas.” ( Full text ( memento of June 18, 2017 on the Internet Archives ) on the website of the Fondation Charles de Gaulle )
  21. a b c attacks against de Gaulle . In: Der Spiegel . No. 26 , 2002 ( online ).
  22. ^ Ernst Weisenfeld : Charles de Gaulle and France: A Conservative Revolutionary . In: The time . No. 12, March 15, 1985.
  23. De Gaulle et la Liberation ( Memento from May 31, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  24. ^ Wilfried Loth: Charles de Gaulle . Kohlhammer Verlag, Stuttgart 2015, ISBN 978-3-17-021362-3 , p. 104.
  25. De Gaulle's trips abroad
  26. Full text of the speech in German ( Memento of the original from May 17, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. and in French ( Memento of May 17, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) and video of the speech @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  27. Page no longer available , search in web archives: full text@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  28. Page no longer available , search in web archives: full text@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  29. ^ Julian Jackson , A Certain Idea of ​​France. The Life of Charles de Gaulle, London 2018, 453–476.
  30. Simone Wisotzki: The nuclear weapons policy of Great Britain and France . Campus, Frankfurt am Main 2001.
  31. ^ Arnd Krüger : Competitive sport as a subsystem of society. In: competitive sport. 6 (1976), pp. 1, 4-11; Volker Hentschel: Charles de Gaulle. A brief history of his life (1890–1970) . Olmsverlag, 2016, ISBN 978-3-487-08576-0 .
  32. The rooster crowed . In: Der Spiegel . No. 4 , 1963 ( online ). For 1967 see Hans-Dieter Lucas: Europe from the Urals to the Atlantic - European politics and European thinking in France during the Adenauer era (1958–1969). Bouvier, 1992, ISBN 3-416-02400-1 , p. 277 ff.
  33. Carola Stern , Thilo Vogelsang , Erhard Klöss and Albert Graff (eds.): Dtv-Lexicon on history and politics in the 20th century . dtv, Munich 1974, vol. 2, p. 282.
  34. ^ A b Rudolf Walther : End of the colonial period: In France's arms . In: The time . No. 5, January 28, 2010.
  35. State Center for Civic Education Baden-Württemberg : Charles de Gaulle: Speech to German youth on September 9, 1962 (with video; 15:57 min)
  36. ^ Youtube Charles de Gaulle - Le discours à la jeunesse allemande - Speech to the German youth
  37. a b Ambassador Knoke, The Hague, to the Foreign Office. In: files on the foreign policy of the Federal Republic of Germany. 1968. Edited on behalf of the Foreign Office by the Institute for Contemporary History. Oldenbourg, Munich 1999, ISBN 3-486-56411-0 , p. 46.
  38. A pompous farewell to the Federal Chancellor , Spiegel, June 30, 2017
  39. Jump up ↑ Sword, Pistols, and Dynamite . In: Der Spiegel . No. 49 , 1963, pp. 90–99 ( online - here p. 98 f.).
  40. Thomas Schneider: 30,000 victims from French nuclear tests? In: Weltspiegel ( ARD ). January 24, 2009.
  41. Nathalie Roller: The nuclear guinea pigs . In: Telepolis . March 21, 2010.
  42. ^ François Mitterrand later changed his mind: During his tenure as president, he had the neutron bomb introduced.
  43. ^ Joachim Joesten: Portrait: Jacques Rueff: In love with gold . In: The time . No. 37, September 10, 1965.
  44. a b Diether Stolze: Has de Gaulle defeated the dollar? In: The time . No. 36, September 2, 1966.
  45. Has the dollar played out? In: The time . No. 35, August 27, 1971.
  46. For details see Taillez, Felix de: "Amour sacré de la Patrie" - de Gaulle in New France. Munich 2011, pp. 130–145.
  47. a b De Gaulle remained undeterred . In: The time . No. 31, August 4, 1967.
  48. a b c d Norbert Frei : Paris in May . In: The time . No. 8, February 14, 2008.
  49. ^ A b Reform by referendum . In: The time . No. 6, February 7, 1969.
  50. ^ A b France: Doubts about de Gaulle . In: The time . No. 16, April 18, 1969.
  51. Voice of the people . In: The time . No. 6, February 7, 1969.
  52. Volker Hentschel (2016): Charles de Gaulle: A Brief History of His Life (1890-1970) . ISBN 978-3-487-08576-0 , p. 258.
  53. obsèques du général de Gaulle: The ceremony à Colombey-les-Deux-Eglises. Institut national de l'audiovisuel , accessed on July 21, 2018 (French, video; recording of a television broadcast by the ORTF radio on November 12, 1970, playing time 1h39 ').
  54. Planetary grief . In: Der Spiegel . No. 47 , 1970 ( online ).
  55. ( Memento from November 10, 2015 in the Internet Archive )
  56. ^ Fondation Charles de Gaulle: La Maison natale Charles de Gaulle à Lille ( Memento of January 27, 2012 in the Internet Archive )
  57. ^ Peter Mangold : The Almost Impossible Ally. Harold Macmillan and Charles De Gaulle . IB Tauris, London 2006, p. 16.
  58. a b c Theo Sommer : Great, even where he failed . In: The time . No. 46, November 13, 1970.
  59. ^ Regis Debray: A demain de Gaulle . Gallimard, Paris, 1996, ISBN 2-07-072021-7 .
  60. ^ Ernst Weisenfeld: History of France since 1945 . CH Beck, Munich 1997, p. 191.
  61. ^ Brian Crozier: De Gaulle: The Statesman . Methuen, London 1974, ISBN 0-413-30180-X .
  62. ^ Wilfried Loth: Charles de Gaulle . Kohlhammer Verlag, Stuttgart 2015, ISBN 978-3-17-021362-3 , p. 302.
  63. ^ An Extraordinary Political Figure: De Gaulle's Legacy in French Political Culture . Federal Agency for Civic Education
  64. Announcement about the death of Elisabeth de Gaulle , accessed April 7, 2014.
  65. ^ Fondation Anne de Gaulle
  66. TV Schoenfilm, see filmography ( Memento from January 18, 2012 in the Internet Archive )