Edouard Daladier: Wikis

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Édouard Daladier


In office
31 January 1933 – 26 October 1933
President Albert Lebrun
Preceded by Joseph Paul-Boncour
Succeeded by Albert Sarraut
In office
30 January 1934 – 9 February 1934
President Albert Lebrun
Preceded by Camille Chautemps
Succeeded by Gaston Doumergue
In office
10 April 1938 – 21 March 1940
President Albert Lebrun
Preceded by Léon Blum
Succeeded by Paul Reynaud

Born 18 June 1884
Carpentras, Vaucluse
Died 10 October 1970 (aged 86)
Paris
Political party Radical

Édouard Daladier (French pronunciation: [edwaʁ daladje]; 18 June 1884 – 10 October 1970) was a French Radical politician, and Prime Minister of France at the start of the Second World War.

Contents

Career

Daladier was born in Carpentras, Vaucluse (later, he would become known to many as "the bull of Vaucluse" because of his thick neck and large shoulders and determined look, although cynics also quipped that his horns were like those of a snail). During the First World War he rose from private to captain and company commander.

A government minister in various posts during the coalition governments between 1924 and 1928, he was instrumental in the Radical Party's break with the socialist SFIO in 1926 (the first Cartel des gauches – "Left-wing Coalition"), and with the conservative Raymond Poincaré in November 1928.

Daladier became a leading member of the Radicals. He first became Prime Minister during 1933, and then again in 1934 for a few weeks when the Stavisky Affair led to far right 6 February 1934 riots and the second Cartel des gauches ' fall from power.

Daladier became Minister of War for the Popular Front coalition in 1936, and became Prime Minister again on 10 April 1938 after the fall of the Popular Front.

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Munich

Édouard Daladier (centre) with Joachim von Ribbentrop at the Munich Agreement 1938

His term in power saw the Munich Agreement, when France backed out of its obligations to defend Czechoslovakia against Nazi Germany. He was pushed into negotiating by Britain's Neville Chamberlain, without which war would have been inevitable at that time. Unlike Chamberlain, Daladier was under no illusions about Hitler's ultimate goals. In fact, he told the British in a late April 1938 meeting that Hitler's real aim was to eventually secure "a domination of the Continent in comparison with which the ambitions of Napoleon were feeble." He went on to say "Today it is the turn of Czechoslovakia. Tomorrow it will be the turn of Poland and Romania. When Germany has obtained the oil and wheat it needs, she will turn on the West. Certainly we must multiply our efforts to avoid war. But that will not be obtained unless Great Britain and France stick together, intervening in Prague for new concessions but declaring at the same time that they will safeguard the independence of Czechoslovakia. If, on the contrary, the Western Powers capitulate again they will only precipitate the war they wish to avoid."[1]

Nevertheless, perhaps discouraged by the pessimistic and defeatist attitudes of both military and civilian members of the French government as well as traumatized by France's blood bath in the first World War that he was personally a witness to, Daladier ultimately let Chamberlain have his way. On his return to Paris, Daladier, who was expecting a hostile crowd, was acclaimed. He then told his aide, Alexis Léger: "Ah, les cons (the fools)!"[2].

Rearmament

In October 1938, Daladier opened secret talks with the Americans on how to bypass American neutrality laws and allowed the French to buy American aircraft to make up for productivity deficiencies in the French aircraft industry.[3] Daladier commented in October 1938 that "If I had three or four thousand aircraft Munich would never have happened", and was most anxious to buy American war planes as the only way of strengthening the French Air Force.[4] A major problem in the Franco-American talks was how the French were to pay for the American planes, and how to bypass the American neutrality acts[5] In addition, the American Johnson Act of 1934 which forbade loans to the nations that had defaulted on their World War I debts was a further complicating factor (France had defaulted on its World War I debts in 1932).[6] In February 1939, the French offered to cede their possessions in the Caribbean and the Pacific together with a lump sum payment of ten billion francs, in exchange for the unlimited right to buy on credit American aircraft.[7] After torturous negotiations, an arrangement was worked out in the spring of 1939 allowing the French to place huge orders with the American aircraft industry; though most of the aircraft ordered had not arrived in France by 1940, the Americans arranged for French orders to be diverted to the British.[8]

World War II

When the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was signed, Daladier responded to the public outcry by outlawing the French Communist Party, which had refused to condemn Joseph Stalin's actions. In 1939, after the German invasion of Poland he was reluctant to go to war, but did so on 4 September 1939 – inaugurating the Phony War. On 6 October of that year, Hitler offered France as well as Great Britain a peace proposal. There were more than a few in the French government prepared to take Hitler up on his offer, but Daladier declared in a nationwide broadcast the next day "We took up arms against aggression. We shall not put them down until we have guarantees for a real peace and security, a security which is not threatened every six months."[9]. On 29 January 1940, in a radio address delivered to the people of France entitled The Nazi's Aim is Slavery, Daladier left little doubt about his opinion of the Germans. In his radio address he said: "For us there is more to do than merely win the war. We shall win it, but we must also win a victory far greater than that of arms. In this world of masters and slaves, which those madmen who rule at Berlin are seeking to forge, we must also save liberty and human dignity."

In March 1940, Daladier resigned as Prime Minister in France, due to his failure to aid Finland's defence during the Winter War, and was replaced with Paul Reynaud. Daladier remained, however, Minister of Defence, and his antipathy to Paul Reynaud prevented Reynaud from replacing Maurice Gamelin as Supreme Commander of all French armed forces. As a result of the massive German breakthrough at Sedan, Daladier swapped ministerial offices with Reynaud, taking over the foreign ministry while Reynaud took over defence, and Gamelin was finally replaced on 19 May 1940, 9 days after the Germans began their invasion campaign on 10 May, by Maxime Weygand. Daladier fled with other members of the government to Morocco, under the impression that the government would continue in North Africa, but was arrested and tried for treason by the Vichy government during the "Riom Trial". He was kept in prison from 1940 to 1943, after which he was handed out to the Germans and deported to Buchenwald concentration camp in November 1942 and in 1943 in the Itter Castle in North Tyrol with other French high personalities until the end of World War II.

After the conflict ended, Daladier was a member of the Chamber of Deputies, and an opponent of Charles de Gaulle. He was also mayor of Avignon from 1953 until 1958. He died in Paris and is buried in the famous cemetery of Père-Lachaise.

Daladier's First Government, 31 January – 26 October 1933

  • Édouard Daladier – President of the Council and Minister of War
  • Eugène Penancier – Vice President of the Council and Minister of Justice
  • Joseph Paul-Boncour – Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Camille Chautemps – Minister of the Interior
  • Georges Bonnet – Minister of Finance
  • Lucien Lamoureux – Minister of Budget
  • François Albert – Minister of Labour and Social Security Provisions
  • Georges Leygues – Minister of Marine
  • Eugène Frot – Minister of Merchant Marine
  • Pierre Cot – Minister of Air
  • Anatole de Monzie – Minister of National Education
  • Edmond Miellet – Minister of Pensions
  • Henri Queuille – Minister of Agriculture
  • Albert Sarraut – Minister of Colonies
  • Joseph Paganon – Minister of Public Works
  • Charles Daniélou – Minister of Public Health
  • Laurent Eynac – Minister of Posts, Telegraphs, and Telephones
  • Louis Serre – Minister of Commerce and Industry

Changes

  • 6 September 1933 – Albert Sarraut succeeds Leygues (d. 2 September) as Minister of Marine. Albert Dalimier succeeds Sarraut as Minister of Colonies.

Daladier's Second Ministry, 30 January – 9 February 1934

  • Édouard Daladier – President of the Council and Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Eugène Penancier – Vice President of the Council and Minister of Justice
  • Jean Fabry – Minister of National Defence and War
  • Eugène Frot – Minister of the Interior
  • François Piétri – Minister of Finance
  • Jean Valadier – Minister of Labour and Social Security Provisions
  • Louis de Chappedelaine – Minister of Military Marine
  • Guy La Chambre – Minister of Merchant Marine
  • Pierre Cot – Minister of Air
  • Aimé Berthod – Minister of National Education
  • Hippolyte Ducos – Minister of Pensions
  • Henri Queuille – Minister of Agriculture
  • Henry de Jouvenel – Minister of Overseas France
  • Joseph Paganon – Minister of Public Works
  • Émile Lisbonne – Minister of Public Health
  • Paul Bernier – Minister of Posts, Telegraphs, and Telephones
  • Jean Mistler – Minister of Commerce and Industry

Changes

Daladier's Third Ministry, 10 April 1938 – 21 March 1940

Édouard Daladier (right) with ambassador André François-Poncet at the Munich Agreement 1938
  • Édouard Daladier – President of the Council and Minister of National Defence and War
  • Camille Chautemps – Vice President of the Council
  • Georges Bonnet – Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Albert Sarraut – Minister of the Interior
  • Paul Marchandeau – Minister of Finance
  • Raymond Patenôtre – Minister of National Economy
  • Paul Ramadier – Minister of Labour
  • Paul Reynaud – Minister of Justice
  • César Campinchi – Minister of Military Marine
  • Louis de Chappedelaine – Minister of Merchant Marine
  • Guy La Chambre – Minister of Air
  • Jean Zay – Minister of National Education
  • Auguste Champetier de Ribes – Minister of Veterans and Pensioners
  • Henri Queuille – Minister of Agriculture
  • Georges Mandel – Minister of Colonies
  • Ludovic-Oscar Frossard – Minister of Public Works
  • Marc Rucart – Minister of Public Health
  • Alfred Jules-Julien – Minister of Posts, Telegraphs, and Telephones
  • Fernand Gentin – Minister of Commerce

Changes

  • 23 August 1938 – Charles Pomaret succeeds Ramadier as Minister of Labour. Anatole de Monzie succeeds Frossard as Minister of Public Works.
  • 1 November 1938 – Paul Reynaud succeeds Paul Marchandeau as Minister of Finance. Marchandeau succeeds Reynaud as Minister of Justice.
  • 13 September 1939 – Georges Bonnet succeeds Marchandeau as Minister of Justice. Daladier succeeds Bonnet as Minister of Foreign Affairs, remaining also Minister of National Defence and War. Raymond Patenôtre leaves the Cabinet and the Position of Minister of National Economy is abolished. Alphonse Rio succeeds Chappedelaine as Minister of Merchant Marine. Yvon Delbos succeeds Zay as Minister of National Education. René Besse succeeds Champetier as Minister of Veterans and Pensioners. Raoul Dautry enters the Cabinet as Minister of Armaments. Georges Pernot enters the Cabinet as Minister of Blockade.
Political offices
Preceded by
Jean Fabry
Minister of Colonies
1924–1925
Succeeded by
Orly André-Hesse
Preceded by
Paul Painlevé
Minister of War
1925
Succeeded by
Paul Painlevé
Preceded by
Yvon Delbos
Minister of Public Instruction and Fine Arts
1925–1926
Succeeded by
Lucien Lamoureux
Preceded by
Bertrand Nogaro
Minister of Public Instruction and Fine Arts
1926
Succeeded by
Édouard Herriot
Preceded by
Georges Pernot
Minister of Public Works
1930
Succeeded by
Georges Pernot
Preceded by
Georges Pernot
Minister of Public Works
1930–1931
Succeeded by
Maurice Deligne
Preceded by
Charles Guernier
Minister of Public Works
1932
Succeeded by
Georges Bonnet
Preceded by
Joseph Paul-Boncour
Minister of War
1932–1934
Succeeded by
Jean Fabry
Preceded by
Joseph Paul-Boncour
President of the Council
1933
Succeeded by
Albert Sarraut
Preceded by
Camille Chautemps
President of the Council
1934
Succeeded by
Gaston Doumergue
Preceded by
Joseph Paul-Boncour
Minister of Foreign Affairs
1934
Succeeded by
Louis Barthou
Preceded by
Vice President of the Council
1936–1937
Succeeded by
Léon Blum
Preceded by
Louis Maurin
Minister of National Defence and War
1936–1940
Succeeded by
Paul Reynaud
Preceded by
Léon Blum
Vice President of the Council
1938
Succeeded by
Camille Chautemps
Preceded by
Léon Blum
President of the Council
1938–1940
Succeeded by
Paul Reynaud
Preceded by
Georges Bonnet
Minister of Foreign Affairs
1939–1940
Succeeded by
Paul Reynaud
Preceded by
Paul Reynaud
Minister of Foreign Affairs
1940
Succeeded by
Paul Reynaud

See also

External links

Endnotes

  1. ^ Shirer, William The Collapse Of The Third Republic: An Inquiry into the Fall of France in 1940, 1969, De Capo Press, pages 339–340.
  2. ^ Jean-Paul Sartre, Le Sursis
  3. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 pages 234–235
  4. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 page 234
  5. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 pages 235–236
  6. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 page 237
  7. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 page 238
  8. ^ Keylor, William "France and the Illusion of American Support, 1919-1940" pages 204–244 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books: Providence 1998 pages 233–244
  9. ^ Shirer, William The Collapse Of The Third Republic: An Inquiry into the Fall of France in 1940, 1969, De Capo Press, page 529.

References

  • Adamthwaite, Anthony France and the Coming of the Second World War 1936-1939, Frank Cass, London, United Kingdom, 1977.
  • Cairns, John C. "Reflections on France, Britain and the Winter War Problem" pages 269–295 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books, Providence, Rhode Island, United States of America, 1998, , ISBN 1-57181-109-5.
  • Imlay, Talbot "France and the Phoney War, 1939-1940" pages 261–282 from French Foreign and Defence Policy, 1918-1940 The Decline and Fall of A Great Power edited by Robert Boyce, London, United Kingdom: Routledge, 1998, ISBN 0-415-15039-6.
  • Irvine, William "Domestic Politics and the Fall of France in 1940" pages 85–99 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books, Providence, Rhode Island, United States of America, 1998, , ISBN 1-57181-109-5.
  • Jackson, Peter "Intelligence and the End of Appeasement" pages 234–260 from French Foreign and Defence Policy, 1918-1940 The Decline and Fall of A Great Power edited by Robert Boyce, London, United Kingdom: Routledge, 1998, ISBN 0-415-15039-6.
  • Lacaze, Yvon “Daladier, Bonnet and the Decision-Making Process During the Munich Crisis, 1938” pages 215–233 from French Foreign and Defence Policy, 1918-1940 The Decline and Fall of A Great Power edited by Robert Boyce, London, United Kingdom: Routledge, 1998, ISBN 0-415-15039-6.
  • Réau, Elisabeth du "Edouard Daladier: The Conduct of the War and the Beginnings of Defeat" pages 100–126 from The French Defeat of 1940 Reassessments edited by Joel Blatt Berghahn Books, Providence, Rhode Island, United States of America, 1998, , ISBN 1-57181-109-5.
  • Shirer, William L. The Collapse of the Third Republic An Inquiry into the Fall of France in 1940, Simon & Schuster, New York, New York, United States of America, 1969.
  • Thomas, Martin "France and the Czechoslovak Crisis" pages 122–159 from The Munich Crisis 1938 Prelude to World War II edited by Igor Lukes and Erik Goldstein, Frank Cass, London, United Kingdom, 1999.

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