Charles de Gaulle

"The General." "The Great Asparagus." "A man with the most oversized personality." Charles de Gaulle was President of France from 1959-69, and his near-mythological status had been building up for decades before then. His debut appearance in Billy's song is because of his critical involvement in the May 1958 Crisis, which saw Algerian Nationalists rise up and, after nearly 130 years of French colonisation, fight for freedom. Dr Arthur Asseraf is an expert in modern France and North Africa, and grew up in France well aware of the near-mythological status that de Gaulle still adopts today.

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