Pierre Laval


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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Laval, Pierre

 

Born June 28, 1883, in Châteldon; died Oct. 15, 1945, in Paris. French statesman. A lawyer by profession.

Laval was a parliamentary deputy from 1914 to 1919 and from 1924 to 1927. From 1927 to 1940 he was a senator. He was a member of the government for several terms. From January 1931 to January 1932 and from June 1935 to January 1936 he was prime minister; from October 1934 to June 1935 he was minister of foreign affairs. In 1935 he concluded agreements with Italy (the Rome Pact) and Great Britain (the Hoare-Laval Agreement of 1935), which facilitated aggression by fascist Italy. He bowed to the pressure of public opinion and on May 2, 1935, signed the Franco-Soviet mutual aid pact prepared by L. Barthou; however, he stubbornly avoided ratifying and implementing the agreement. From the beginning of World War II he held a defeatist position, seeking the conclusion of a separate peace with fascist Germany. On June 23, 1940, after France signed the armistice, Laval assumed the post of state minister in the Pétain government. From July 12 to Dec. 13, 1940, he was vice-premier. He acted as an outright accomplice of the Hitlerites. From April 1942 to August 1944 he was prime minister of the collaborationist Vichy government. The moment France was liberated (1944), he fled the country. He was arrested in the American occupation zone of Austria and in August 1945 turned over to the French authorities. At a court trial he was sentenced to death as a traitor and was subsequently shot.

Z. S. BELOUSOVA

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
73 YEARS AGO (1945) The former premier of Vichy France - Nazi collaborator Pierre Laval - was executed for treason by a firing squad.
The politician who pushed the French registration law was none other than Pierre Laval, who would later lead the Vichy puppet regime, and would eventually be shot as a collaborator.
Using their testimony to the courts who judged them after the liberation of France, Korn-Brzoza shines a light on the roles played by Vichy's elderly leader, Marshal Philippe Petain, his prime minister Pierre Laval, and police ministers Rene Bousquet, Joseph Darnand, Pierre Pucheu, Marcel Peyrouton and Adrien Marquet.
1936 - Albert Sarraut becomes Prime Minister of France following Pierre Laval's resignation over the Abyssinia crisis.
Former Marshal of France Philippe Petain and former Prime Minister Pierre Laval of France, former Italian Prime Minister Benito Mussolini and other fascist leaders, former Italian Marshal Pietro Badoglio, King Victor Emanuel and members of the Fascist Council of Italy after World War II, former Prime Minister Adnan Menderes and ministers Fatin RE-E-tE- Zorlu and Hasan Polatkan, Col.
Prime Minister Pierre Laval made even more important cuts in the same sectors the following year.
The trauma does not seem "mutually shared," and the French individuals that readers meet in this book are hard-core collaborators without a future in postwar Europe like Pierre Laval, Joseph Darnand, and Louis Darquier, not the nameless bureaucrats who appear in the final pages of the book making "unusually lengthy silent clasp of hands" with departing German authorities (152).
Charles Lindbergh (1927) Pierre Laval (1931) Wallis Simpson, duchess of Windsor (1936) Adolf Hitler (1938) Josef Stalin (1939) Richard Nixon/Henry Kissinger (1972) Ayatollah Khomeini (1979) Yasser Arafat (1993) You* (2006)
October 15 Convicted of treason, former Vichy premier and Nazi stooge Pierre Laval is shot by a firing squad at Fresnes, Val-de-Marne, outside Paris.
The trial of Pierre Laval; defining treason, collaboration, and patriotism in World War II France.
Instead, the defeatist politician Pierre Laval seized a tottering France, installed the aged hero of Verdun, Marshal Petain, as figurehead leader in the spa town of Vichy and hastily made peace with Hitler.