France was defeating the insurgents in Algeria militarily, repeatedly. So why did the French give up and withdraw from Algeria? The war in Algeria began in 1954. In the early 1960s France's Charles de Gaulle, a conservative-centrist president since 1959, believed that France's war in Algeria could be won militarily but that trying to do so was not the best alternative. He negotiated an end to the war and won the wrath of rightists who believed that the best alternative was a military victory rather than surrender. What would John McCain have thought had he been delivered back to that time as a Frenchman?
Narrative: War in Algeria and Independence