Darlan, Jean Louis Xavier François

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Darlan, Jean Louis Xavier François


Born Aug. 7, 1881, in Nérac; died Dec. 24, 1942, in Algiers. French military figure and statesman; admiral of the fleet (1939).

Darían joined the navy in 1902. In December 1936 he became head of the general staff of the navy. During World War II in August 1939 he became commander in chief of the navy, and after the fall of France in June 1940 he became minister of the navy in the government of A. Pétain. In February 1941, Darían became vice-president of the Council of Ministers of the Vichy government, minister of defense, and minister of foreign and internal affairs. He concluded many agreements with fascist Germany and Italy. He became commander in chief of the armed forces of the Vichy government in April 1942.

After the landing of British and American troops in North Africa in November 1942. Darían ordered French troops to stop resisting the Allies. Later, he ordered the French armed forces to enter the fight against the fascist powers. On November 14 he declared himself high commissioner of France in North Africa and formed the State Council. Darían was assassinated by a French nationalist.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.