A Legion of honour and a war cross. This is what is in the envelope that, on 29 April 1954, general de Castries, head of the entrenched camp of Dien bien Phu and pounded for a month by the shells of the Viet Minh, tends to the young woman who stands before him, off in a trellis of a paratrooper borrowing. Stunned, the nurse conveyor of the air, 29 years old, remains silent when the general reads the citation that accompanied the medals and concludes : “to Remain, to the combatants of Dien bien Phu, the most pure incarnation of the heroic virtues of the nurse, engl…

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