Charles Andre Joseph Marie de Gaulle
(Also for Three Word Wednesday and ABC Wednesday: "Z" is for "zero.")
An easy question for you this week. What’s this chap’s name?
He was the tall one, standing off to one side, isolated from the group, in some photographs of the big cheeses, the leaders of the free world, back during World War II.
He hated having to stand off to one side, What he called the limejuice types said, sorry, but your country collapsed in just a couple of weeks. So you have to stand to one side.
He didn’t like the limejuice types. He didn’t care much for the Yankees either. Fact is, he seemed to dislike almost everyone; he even hated the big-cheeses of his own country.
Back when he was in school his 6-foot 5-inch height had the other kids referring to him as The Big Asparagus.
The Big Asparagus was a strange one, for a military leader. He was an intellectual, and there weren’t many of those among the military leaders on either side of the Great Conflict. His father had been a professor of literature and the son became a fine writer with what critics have described as a powerful, elegant and even poetic style.
He also wrote about military matters. In the thirties, he wrote and lectured often on one key topic: You see, folks, he said, there’s this little device called a tank – we had it back in ’14 (you know, the war that was to end all wars) – but we never used it right.
We still aren’t using it right. If all you big fromages would just listen to me, whatever those folks up north in Hitler Alley are planning to pull off, we’d be ready for them.
One of the books he wrote claimed that a modern army should be made up of “mobile armored divisions.” Well, the top brass didn’t listen. Zero is the number of full generals, of whatever country, who enjoy being lectured to by lieutenant-colonels.
So the Big Asparagus had to be content to be faithful to his main activity: continuing to dislike everyone and biding his time.
On a beautiful day in September, the big bus named WWII shifted into gear and the bad guys from Hitler Alley took off in it. It turned out there was not much that could stop them or their tanks – their "mobile armored divisions."
Our boy never said “I told you so” but that’s only because, as usual, most folks weren’t listening to him. If you scrutinize his position carefully, however, you may decide that he had made a lot of sense.