So who is the real Francois Hollande? According to the more optimistic school of thinking, he will prove to be a French version of Harry Truman – a discreet, uncharismatic man who, confronted with dramatic circumstances such as the cold war, ends up doing the right things for lack of a better alternative. Has Mr Hollande not done just that, not merely in Mali but also by introducing more flexibility in labour laws? If so, he will go down in history as the president who, to everybody’s surprise, succeeded where his predecessors failed. In other words, he may be a Gerhard Schroeder in disguise.