Oldest Allies, Guarded Friends: The United States and France since 1940

By Charles G. Cogan | Go to book overview

Introduction

The French not only forget benefits received and injuries endured; they even come to dislike those to whom they are indebted, while ceasing to hate those who have done them harm. Diligence in returning good for good, and in exacting vengeance for evil, comes to be a sort of servitude which they do not readily accept.

La Rochefoucauld,

Maxims1

It seems to me that God, with an infinite skill and wisdom, is in the process of preparing the anglo-saxon race for a moment which is certainly coming. . . . If I am not mistaken, this powerful race will burst out upon Mexico, upon Central America and South America, then on the islands in the sea, then upon Africa and beyond.

Rev. Josiah Strong,

Our Country2


MODELS

Trajectories

In the course of the nineteenth century, a moment of history took place in which the trajectories of France and the United States crossed: an ascending curve for the United States, a descending one for France. The crossing point could have been in approximately 1885, the year the Reverend Strong wrote the bombastic words cited above. Perhaps more symbolically, the moment could be situated around the Congress of Berlin in 1878, when Benjamin Disraeli, whose French was abominable, was persuaded to present his speech in English. That occasion

-1-

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Oldest Allies, Guarded Friends: The United States and France since 1940
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Foreword vii
  • Preface xi
  • Note xii
  • Introduction 1
  • Notes 17
  • 2 - The Falling Out 19
  • Notes 49
  • 3 - The Turning Point 55
  • Notes 71
  • 4 - La Grande Nation, La Grande Armée1 75
  • Notes 95
  • 5 - The Reversal 99
  • Notes 117
  • 6 - The Multilateral Force: The Two Hegemons 121
  • Notes 146
  • 7 - Posthumous Coronation and Détente: The Year of Europe 151
  • Notes 172
  • 8 - Euro-Corps: Return of the Ambivalences 177
  • Notes 195
  • 9 - Epilogue: by Default of Enemies? 199
  • Notes 215
  • Selected Bibliography 219
  • Index 227
  • About the Author 235
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