The “discourse of Ottawa”… never delivered
Photo courtesy, Archives of the City of Montreal
General de Gaulle goes up in an airplane of Air Canada at Dorval airport to return in France… without having set foot in the federal capital. The Newspaper title in a : “There is a party in fucking Ottawa “.
Saturday 22 jul 2017 00:00
Saturday 22 jul 2017 00:00
Look at this article
In anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the “Vive le Québec libre” of general de Gaulle, a researcher sovereigntist decided to go put his nose in the archives of the French presidency in Pierrefitte-sur-Seine, a paris suburb. There was found a document is hardly surprising : on four pages, two versions of a speech that the French president had to play in Ottawa… before you cancel his dinner with the prime minister.
He has even written his speech in hand, through another speech, typed, probably prepared by the writer the normal De Gaulle.
The two texts contrast in their content, to the glory of Canada, as a new nation, the other, to that of Quebec and their right to self-determination.
“I suspect he has written this new discourse on the boat,” said Denis Monière, president of the League of national action, which has been found in the archives of the French presidency last October. Because de Gaulle had come to the edge of Colbert, a cruiser of the war, to avoid having to land in the federal capital, as is the usual protocol.
Clearly, the general had not the same vision of Canada as the editor of the first text. The speech that had spawned its services mentioned the “sacrifices” and the glory of the heroes “canadians who have” fought for the freedom of the world “during the two great wars, and hailed” a strong State and stable “, a “new country” and ” in full swing “.
Between the lines, the general trace a text far more political on the country. “(…) the fraction of its inhabitants which is of French origin, character and language, is asserting itself more every day as an entity intended to have it, ” wrote de Gaulle.
And then, it tends almost a trap to Ottawa : “both (Canada and France) felt that the balance should be based on the right of every people to dispose fully of himself (…) on the universal obligation not to accept and to recognise nowhere, no conquest or domination land or population carried out by the force. “As in the taking of Quebec by the English, in 1759…
Finally, de Gaulle did will never this ” speech in Ottawa.” After his “Vive le Québec libre !” on the balcony of the Montreal city hall, the general is no longer welcome in the federal capital. It will, therefore, not at the dinner hosted by prime minister Lester Pearson, where the general had to give a speech on the 27th of July.
On a typed copy of the text included a note signed by the president himself : “was not pronounced, and for good reason ! “
The corrected version of the speech ottawa