Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle was the leader of the Free French forces during World War II. His relations with Roosevelt were notoriously strained. After France was liberated, he established a temporary government.
In 1958, France faced a major crisis due to the war in Algeria and de Gaulle was called back to solve the situation. He was nominated Prime Minister, had a new constitution drafted and approved by referendum and finally became the 18th president of the French republic. He was in office from 1959 until 1969. In 1969, feeling he did not have popular support anymore, de Gaulle organized a referendum, ostensibly about minor institutional reforms. When the voters rejected the reforms he advocated, de Gaulle voluntarily stepped down from office.
De Gaulle was born on November 22, 1890 and died on November 9,1970 at age 79.
- Faced with crisis, the man of character falls back on himself. He imposes his own stamp of action, takes responsibility for it, makes it his own. 
- How can you govern a country with 365 varieties of cheese?
- France has lost a battle. But France has not lost the war!
- You start out giving your hat, then you give your coat, then your shirt, then your skin and finally your soul. (On dealing with the Soviet Union)
- You may be sure that the Americans will commit all the stupidities they can think of, plus some that are beyond imagination. (On U.S. entry into the Vietnam War)
Quotes about de Gaulle
- The hardest cross I have to bear is the Cross of Lorraine. —attributed, falsely, to Winston Churchill (it was really uttered by Churchill's envoy to France)