This photo was taken from the observation deck of the 210-meter tall Tour Montparnasse and shows the southwest part of Paris, including the Eiffel Tower, the business district of La Défense and Les Invalides.
A veteran of World War I, in the 1920s and 1930s de Gaulle came to the fore as a proponent of armored warfare and advocate of military aviation, which he considered a means to break the stalemate of trench warfare. During World War II, he reached the rank of Brigadier General, leading one of the few successful armored counter-attacks during the 1940 Battle of France, and then organized the Free French Forces with exiled French officers in England. He gave a famous radio address on the June 18th 1940 , exhorting the French people to resist Nazi Germany (see translation of the speech at : Appeal of June 18). Following the liberation of France in 1944, de Gaulle became prime minister in the Provisional Government of the French Republic. Although he retired from politics in 1946 due to political conflicts, he was returned to power with military support following the May 1958 crisis. De Gaulle led the writing of a new constitution founding the Fifth Republic, and was elected President of France. As president, Charles de Gaulle ended the political chaos and violence that preceded his return to power. Although he initially supported French rule over Algeria, he controversially decided to grant independence to that country, ending an expensive and unpopular war. A new currency was issued to control inflation and industrial growth was promoted. De Gaulle oversaw the development of atomic weapons and promoted a pan-European foreign policy, seeking to diminish U.S. and British influence; withdrawing France from the NATO military command, he objected to Britain's entry into the European Community and he recognized Communist China. During his term, de Gaulle also faced controversy and political opposition from Communists and Socialists, and a spate of widespread protests in May 1968. De Gaulle retired in 1969, but remains the most influential leader in modern French history.
The truss bridge is of lattice girder construction and 418 metres long, with 5 spans totalling 301 metres actually across the river, two further spans on the southern shore, and one on the north. It was designed by Brunel's former assistant William Jacomb, built by Head Wrightson and opened in 1889. See a previous and older post on this bridge using this link.
A Rosé wine (From French: rosé, ‘pinkish’) has some of the color typical of a red wine, but only enough to turn it pink. The pink color can range from a pale orange to a vivid near-purple, depending on the grapes and wine making techniques. There are three major ways to produce rosé wine :
- Skin Contact : the first is used when rosé wine is the primary product. Red-skinned grapes are crushed and the skins are allowed to remain in contact with the juice for a short period, typically two or three days. The grapes are then pressed, and the skins are discarded rather than left in contact throughout fermentation (as with red wine making). The skins contain much of the strongly flavored tannin and other compounds, which leaves the taste more similar to a white wine. The longer that the skins are left in contact with the juice, the more intense the color of the final wine
- Saignée : Rosé wine can be produced as a by-product of red wine fermentation using a technique known as Saignée, or bleeding the vats. When a winemaker desires to impart more tannin and color to a red wine, some of the pink juice from the must can be removed at an early stage. The red wine remaining in the vats is intensified as a result of the bleeding, because the volume of juice in the must is reduced, and the must involved in the maceration is concentrated. The pink juice that is removed can be fermented separately to produce rosé.
- Blending : the simple mixing of red wine to a white to impart color, is uncommon. This method is discouraged in most wine growing regions.
Regardign Blending, there is currently a European Union scheme to allow a blend of red and white wines to be sold as rose. An overwhelming majority of French consumers are strongly opposed to this scheme. In France rosé is traditionally produced by leaving crushed red grapes to soak with macerating white grapes. But New World winemakers in Australia, South Africa and elsewhere have produced cheaper rosés by blending white and red roses. The European Commission, which is due to finalise reforms of the EU wine labelling system in June, has offered to compromise by giving French rosé wines a special designation to distinguish them from blended wines...
The statue has recently returned to its original prime position, in time for the anniversary of Darwin's birth 200 years ago, and for the start of the programme of Darwin200 events.