Maxime Weygand

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Weygand, Maxime

 

Born Jan. 21, 1867, in Brussels; died Jan. 28, 1965, in Paris. French general, member of the Academy of Sciences of France (1931).

Weygand graduated from the military school of St. Cyr in 1887. He fought in World War I; in November 1917 he became a member of the Superior Council of War and in March 1918 chief of staff of the supreme commander in chief. In 1920-22 he was chief of a military mission in Poland for the training and supply of the Polish Army. From 1930 to 1935, Weygand was chief of the General Staff, vice-president of the Superior Council of War, and inspector of the armies. In 1937 he participated in the fascist movement of the Cagoulards. In early 1939 he was appointed commander in chief of the French troops in Syria and Lebanon. On May 19, 1940, he became chief of staff of national defense and supreme commander in chief and was one of the organizers of the capitulation of France. From July to September 1940 Weygand was minister of national defense of the Vichy government and then general representative of the government in French Africa. He concluded an agreement with the USA in 1941. In November 1942 he was arrested by the Germans and detained in a camp until 1945. After the liberation Weygand faced a military tribunal but was acquitted in 1948.

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Instead, the groundwork for Torch was well laid by the contacts of Roosevelt's legate, Robert Murphy, with Petain's top man in North Africa, General Weygand.

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