France awards top war medal...to London
LONDON is set to be bestowed France’s highest award for military merit.
Plans are under way for President Emmanuel Macron to hand the capital a Legion d’Honneur in June, in recognition of its work in helping to win the Second World War.
While Britain played a key role in D-Day, which led direction to the Liberation of France from Nazi conquest, Mr Macron is adamant his predecessor Charles de Gaulle was a vital component of victory.
The wartime leader was exiled to London after French forces collapsed, and the general successfully used the city as a base to inspire his fellow countrymen.
On June 18 1940, De Gaulle made his famous Appeal speech via BBC Radio from Broadcasting House.
He said: “I, General de Gaulle, currently in London, invite the officers and the French soldiers who are located in British territory or who might end up here, with their weapons or without their weapons, to put themselves in contact with me.”
De Gaulle concluded: “Whatever happens, the flame of the French resistance must not be extinguished and will not be extinguished.”
Such words were recognised as the first sign of French Resistance, leading to the French taking up arms.
President Emmanuel Macron