French-American Relations

April 10, 1968

Report Outline
Conflict Between America and France
Ups and Downs in U.S.-French Relations
Reasons for Recurrence of Controversy

Conflict Between America and France

The agreement on world monetary reform reached at Stockholm on March 30 widened an already broad gulf between the United States and France. Nine of the International Monetary Fund's so-called Group of Ten financial powers approved an American-sponsored plan to create a new reserve asset, known as special drawing rights or “paper gold.” France was the only country to oppose the plan. “The real problems were not touched “at Stockholm, French Finance Minister Michel Debre asserted in Paris on April 1—” discipline of the reserve currencies, and value of the international standard which is gold.” Debre asserted that “Reality will take its revenge, and one will then forget this so-called French solitude.”

France and the United States have been as far apart in foreign policy as in monetary policy. The de Gaulle government accuses the United States of trying to undermine French independence, while many Americans believe that France is determined to humiliate this country in any way possible. Public opinion is inflamed on both sides of the Atlantic.

French-American relations have steadily deteriorated during the 10 years since Charles de Gaulle's return to power. Such friction is not unique; the underlying friendship between the two countries has often been subjected to severe strain in the past two centuries. When confronted by common peril, however, France and the United States have almost always managed to bury their differences.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Mar. 03, 1978  French Parliamentary Elections
Feb. 14, 1973  French Elections, 1973
Apr. 10, 1968  French-American Relations
Nov. 24, 1965  Election of De Gaulle: Past and Future Policies
Nov. 20, 1963  French Policy Under De Gaulle
Feb. 20, 1963  France and the Alliance
Nov. 07, 1962  French Governmental Crisis
Mar. 10, 1960  Status of France
Sep. 15, 1955  Future of France in North Africa
Dec. 16, 1953  French Political Instability
Nov. 15, 1952  France and Germany in West European Defense
Jan. 29, 1947  Empire of France
Sep. 01, 1945  France in Transition
Aug. 08, 1944  Relations with France
Mar. 21, 1942  Relations with France
Apr. 10, 1934  Constitutional Reform in France
Jun. 30, 1929  The French Debt and the Young Plan
Apr. 27, 1928  The Briand-Kellogg Correspondence
Mar. 30, 1928  French National Elections - 1928
Aug. 24, 1926  French Currency and Exchange
Jun. 30, 1925  The Moroccan Problem
Jun. 17, 1925  The French Debt to the United States
Apr. 11, 1925  The French Financial Problem
May 07, 1924  The French National Elections
Sep. 21, 1923  French Reparation Policy in the Light of the Dariac Report
Diplomacy and Diplomats
Regional Political Affairs: Europe