Charles de Gaulle was a famous French statesman and general, born in the idyllic city of Lille in the year 1890. Thanks to his father, this great soldier discovered the history of France at a very young age, because in his family he had a well-established custom of debating historical and philosophical questions at the table.
During World War II, De Gaulle was the first French leader in that country’s struggle against the Nazi Germany of Adolf Hitler. Later, during the Cold War, De Gaulle also acquired great importance as a totally decisive figure for France and Germany to achieve the long-awaited reconciliation.
The best famous quotes of Charles de Gaulle
Below you will discover the 75 best quotes from Charles de Gaulle, Who is undoubtedly one of the most famous and well-known military personnel of the whole of the twentieth century.
1. Patriotism is when love for one’s own people comes first; nationalism, when hatred towards others than your own is the first.
Nationalism is an ideological current that is extremely damaging to a nation, because only by acting together can a society reach its greatest human and technological potential.
2. How can you govern a nation with 246 different types of cheese?
As is often said in variety is taste, a diverse society will always necessarily be much richer in talent and knowledge.
3. Always choose the most difficult path, you will not find opponents.
Usually, the most difficult path will also be the one that gives us the most benefits.
4. You can be sure Americans will do all the stupid things they can think of, plus some that are beyond imagination.
As de Gaulle never relied on American military capabilities, a thought that did not always give him good results.
5. Belgium is a country invented by the British to annoy the French.
Without a doubt, this is at least a somewhat curious take on this particular nation, a country that has always viewed itself as completely neutral in all great wars.
6. It is the supreme virtue of the strong, the refuge of the weak, the modesty of the proud, the pride of the humble, the prudence of the wise and the sense of the foolish. To speak is … to dissipate one’s strength; while the action of demand is concentration. Silence is a necessary prelude to order thoughts.
It is only in the face of silence that an authority can impose its thought, as long as we are not completely in agreement with something that we must pronounce.
7. I have come to the conclusion that politics is too serious a business to be left to politicians.
De Gaulle was forced to take the reins of his country, because in his view politicians were not sufficiently prepared for such an enormous task.
8. Cemeteries are full of indispensable men.
Wars never favor anyone, even the bravest will probably end up hurting them.
9. No European statesman will join Europe: Europe will be united by the Chinese.
As we can see, this former French leader already saw the influences that the Asian country was going to have, no doubt that China is a nation to be reckoned with in the near future.
10. The more I know people, the more I like dogs.
Dogs are the best companions we can find as men, because their loyalty to us will always be full and genuine.
11. Silence is the ultimate weapon of power.
Thanks to silence, an ideological current can freely impose its ideas, as unfortunately happened under Nazi Germany.
12. We can go to the moon, but it’s not far. The greatest distance we have to travel is still within us.
People must come to an understanding for the good of all mankind, because only a well cohesive society will be able to achieve all of its goals.
13. Nothing great will be accomplished without great men, and men are only great if they are determined to be so.
Great works need great people to achieve them, because without those people who dared to do what seemed impossible, today’s society would certainly not be as we know it.
14. You have to be quick and adaptive, otherwise a strategy is useless.
Military strategies can vary on the battlefield, for if an army is unable to adapt to the situations it encounters, it will be defeated with great ease.
15. War shakes the mud of their worst instincts in the hearts of men. He places more importance on violence, breeds hatred and lets down greed. He crushes the weak, exalts the unworthy and strengthens tyranny … Time and time again he has destroyed all orderly life, shattered hope and killed the prophets.
War is one of the worst situations humanity can go through, all politicians should try to avoid it anyway.
16. In politics, you have to betray the country or the electorate. I prefer to betray the electorate.
Lies in politics are all too common, a ploy he unfortunately continues to use today.
17. Deliberation is the work of many men. Action, of one.
When the time comes, we will just have to act, as is the case in the most difficult situations where only action will be something that can favor us.
18. Since a politician never believes what he says, he is quite surprised that his word disturbs him.
By using lies a politician can seize power, as citizens we have to be very careful in exercising our right to vote.
19. When I want to know what France thinks, I ask myself the question.
As a senior leader De Gaulle was considered the very personification of France, everything he ever did was solely for the good of his country.
20. France has no friends, only interests.
International politics is a place where only the strong survive, something this famous leader always kept in mind when making his decisions.
21. Respect only those who resist me, but I cannot tolerate.
For him there were only two types of people, those who were with him and those who were against him. De Gaulle would still respect two ha but would fight without a quarter against them.
22. Gentlemen, I am ready for questions in my answers.
He was a leader he was not afraid to debate, it was always very clear that he would do his best for his nation.
23. At the root of our civilization, there is the freedom of every person of thought, belief, opinion, work, leisure.
Individual freedoms must always be respected, otherwise the nation in which we find ourselves would not really fight for the interests of its citizens.
24. When I’m right, I get angry. Churchill gets angry when he makes a mistake. We are angry with each other most of the time.
During the Second World War, conflicts did not cease to emerge, the political climate of the time did not favor that the nations could reach agreements.
25. A man of character finds a particular attraction for difficulty.
Big setbacks are the ones that really test us, we’ve never let them bend our will.
26. Whatever happens, the flame of French resistance must not be extinguished and will not be extinguished. Tomorrow, like today, I will speak on Radio London.
He always knew that France would resist, that with time and perseverance the waters would certainly resume their course.
27. Sometimes genius is knowing when to stop.
You should never face a complicated situation without preparing for it first, sometimes you will always have to stop, to be able to think clearly about our next move.
28. I tried to get some mud out of France. But she will come back to her mistakes and throw up. I cannot prevent the French from being French.
French society is very complex and diverse, you could say that France is a nation in which it never rains to everyone’s liking.
29. No country without an atomic bomb can consider itself truly independent.
Nuclear energy has in the past created a sharp division between the most powerful nations, according to De Gaulle, France should be in possession of the atomic bomb as soon as possible.
30. Siguem firm, pure and faithful; At the end of our pain is the greatest glory in the world, that of the men who have not given up.
The speeches of this general were truly inspiring for his troops, without them French society would never have been able to resist the plunder they suffered from the Germans.
31. You will live. Only the best are murdered.
A very harsh sentence with which he is general, pays a clear homage to all those great men who died in defense of their homeland.
32. No, I’m not talking about the Russians; I mean the Germans.
France suffered heavy losses as a result of its invasion by Germany, a fact that the French later attempted to make up for in the Nuremberg trials.
33. You have to wait until the afternoon to see how splendid the day was; life is not judged by death.
A person’s life should be judged as a whole, as long as we are still alive we can still do great things with it.
34. Character is the virtue of difficult times.
Only the strongest turn out to be prepared for the toughest times, most people just could never stand to be in a war.
35. I have heard your point of view. They don’t harmonize with mine. The decision is taken unanimously.
The opinions of others are always worth hearing, but these, in practice, do not need to change how we think about a particular topic.
36. Politics, when it is an art and a service, not an exploitation, is to act for an ideal through realities.
Politics should always be due to the welfare of the society it represents, representatives who do not follow this basic principle may not be able to hold political office.
37. The last laugher did not understand the joke.
A sentence of this famous soldier, which comes to mean the same sentence as the well-known sentence: in a good comprehension few words are enough.
38. History does not teach fatalism. There are times when the will of a handful of free men breaks determinism and opens new avenues.
A few men are capable of making big changes, as individuals we must always stay true to our ideals.
39. Never give up the initiative.
No one should ever decide for us, if that happened we would most likely be hurt.
40. It is not tolerable, it is not possible that from so much death, so much sacrifice and ruin, so much heroism, a greater and better humanity does not emerge.
Of all difficult situations, society always comes out stronger, but unfortunately today we know for sure that it doesn’t always end up happening.
41. Difficulty attracts a man of character because it is by embracing it that he is realized.
The great difficulties are those which allow us to show others what pasta we are really made of.
42. Greatness is a path that leads to the unknown.
If we want to achieve greatness, we have to be brave and daring, otherwise luck will never favor us.
43. The leader must aim high, think big, judge broadly, separating himself from common people who argue within narrow limits.
Only those who show greater worth should become leaders, leadership is a position of such importance that it should never be achieved lightly.
44. For glory is given only to those who have always dreamed of it.
If we do not dream through the front door, we will never achieve great goals, because to achieve them we must have imagined once and a thousand times.
45. You start by giving your hat, then you give him your coat, then your shirt, then your skin and finally your soul.
Nobody should deprive us of the right to be ourselves, the State is an entity which can certainly come to claim many things but never our dignity.
46. Yes, it is Europe, from the Atlantic to the Urals, it is Europe, it is all of Europe, which will decide the fate of the world.
Europe is the cradle of Western civilization and during WWII everything was at stake. If things had turned out differently, today’s world wouldn’t be as we know it.
47. While ordinary officers must be content to behave well in front of their men, great leaders have always carefully handled their effects.
Great military leaders are really rare men, but when they do show up they can be really decisive in battle.
48. To become the master, the politician passes himself off as the servant.
The politician will always seek to use his cunning to take control of a nation, as voters we must know how to discern between the lies and the truths that they will use in their speeches.
49. Diplomats are only useful when the weather is nice. As soon as it rains, they drown in every drop.
In the most difficult situations, diplomats are often seen quickly overwhelmed, as this famous former leader never had much confidence in them.
50. There can be no other criterion, no other standard than gold. Yes, gold which never changes, which can be transformed into ingots, ingots, coins, which has no nationality, and which is eternally and universally accepted as the unalterable fiduciary value par excellence.
Gold is viewed by most investors as a safe haven because it has proven over the years to never lose value. Gold is an investment that in the long run we can never go wrong with.
51. Don’t ask me who influenced me. A lion is made up of the lambs he suffered, and I have read all my life.
Reading was a hobby that helped him a lot in his intellectual development, a very beneficial practice that many of us could also emulate today.
52. Only danger can unite the French.
The French had to unite against a common enemy, at that time there was no decision-making power it was just now or never.
53. I have always thought it was Joan of Arc and Bonaparte. Since we don’t know each other well.
The great French heroes have always inspired him, in them this general found powerful figures that he could try to imitate.
54. Authority does not function without prestige, nor prestige without distance.
In De Gaulle’s opinion, a leader must always be an unreachable person, because the population must think at all times that their leader is capable of solving any situation. An aura of mysticism that being a close man we could never project.
55. The perfection preached in the gospels never built an empire. Every man of action has a strong dose of selfishness, pride, harshness and cunning.
In this quote, De Gaulle tells us about the qualities that every good soldier should possess, because in his opinion only the toughest men could emerge from the battlefield unscathed.
56. I predict that he will gradually sink into a bottomless faux pas, no matter how much he spends in men and money.
Some wars simply cannot be won, no matter how many resources we choose to devote to them. Something Americans discovered during the famous Vietnam War.
57. The Jews remain what they have always been: an elite, self-confident and dominant people.
The Jews have always been a deeply misunderstood people, a fact that has become clear and evident when we see the atrocious acts they must have suffered over the years.
58. Treaties are like roses and maidens. They last as long as they last.
During the Second World War many treaties were broken, unfortunately the personal ambition of some inevitably led them to destroy them.
59. To govern is always to choose between drawbacks.
The leader of a nation will always be faced with the most difficult decisions to make and that is why only the best prepared people should be able to stand for election.
60. The desire for privilege and the taste for equality are the dominant and contradictory passions of the French of all times.
Ambition is something that is very commonly corrupted by people, an unwanted emotion that many French people have unfortunately also experienced at one point or another in history.
61. France cannot be France without greatness.
France is certainly a great nation, an ancient and historic country to which it will undoubtedly always fight against all the adversities that life can throw at it.
62. A true leader always keeps an element of surprise underneath the manga, which others may not understand but which keeps his audience excited and breathless.
If we want to be more successful we have to learn not to show all our cards in advance, sometimes we will have to wait for the right time to act.
63. The future does not belong to men.
The future can be very bright for humanity, always clear as we learn to collaborate with each other.
64. In the face of crisis, a man of character turns to himself. He imposes his own seal of action, takes responsibility for it, makes it his own.
The most difficult situations can bring out the best and the worst in us, which often happens in wars.
65. Victory often goes to the army that makes the slightest mistake, not the brightest plan.
Mistakes in combat can end up destroying the most elaborate plan, so as De Gaulle says in this quote, in combat the important thing is not to make mistakes.
66. My dear old country, here we are again facing a hard test.
Under his exceptional command, the French would never recognize defeat, for somehow they would always manage to remain at gunpoint.
67. The leader is always alone in the face of bad luck.
When the time comes, any leader is in danger of suffering the worst of fates, for when the greatest adversity manages to find him, there will probably be no one left to support him.
68. Adversity attracts a man of character. Look for the bitter joy of responsibility.
The most capable men often enjoy great challenges, because it is thanks to them that they can shine in their maximum splendor.
69. It is better to have a bad method than to have none.
If we don’t have an orderly way of working, we will never be able to be successful in any profession. In any order of work is essential.
70. Do not think of yourself as indispensable or infallible.
In times of war, we are all simple numbers, our lives can be as insignificant as those of others.
71. There can be no prestige without mystery, for familiarity breeds contempt.
If one day we achieve a certain notoriety, we should not be seen too much in public, because it is perhaps these people with whom we usually work out, who end up betraying us.
72. Male leaders will later be remembered for the usefulness of what they accomplished rather than for the magnitude of their efforts.
Only by taking big steps can we stand out from the crowd, great efforts will not be applauded if we do not achieve something relevant with them.
73. For all of us French people, the guiding rule of our time is to be faithful to France.
It is only by being faithful to her nation that France will succeed in winning, which all the French people gladly did during World War II.
74. In the tumult of men and events, loneliness was my temptation; now he’s my friend. What other satisfaction can you look for after you face the story?
Sometimes it is better to be alone than in bad company, which Charles de Gaulle has certainly learned over time.
75. I am a man who belongs to no one and who belongs to all.
As head of government, he always considered himself a man of the village, all his works in life were always for his benefit.