Henri Honoré Giraud

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Giraud, Henri Honoré


Born Jan. 18, 1879, in Paris; died Mar. 11, 1949, in Dijon. French general and political figure.

Giraud graduated from Saint Cyr in 1900. He fought in World War I. From 1922 to 1926 he took part in the suppression of the liberation uprising in Morocco. At the beginning of World War II he commanded the Seventh Army and then the Ninth Army. In May 1940 he was captured by the Germans, but in April 1942 he escaped to the unoccupied zone of France and established ties with H. P. Pétain and representatives of the United States to the Vichy government. In November 1942 with the help of American intelligence he moved to Algiers, and after the Anglo-American landing in North Africa he was appointed commander of the French forces in North Africa on Nov. 17, 1942. He was made chief of the French military and civil administration in North Africa on Dec. 27, 1942. From June to November 1943 he was cochairman with de Gaulle of the French Committee of National Liberation. He was relieved of this post after differences with de Gaulle and after he was charged with maintaining secret contacts with the Vichy government. In April 1944 he was also relieved of the office of commander of the Free French armed forces., which he had held since November 1943. In 1948 he was appointed vice-president of the Supreme War Council.

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