Vichy regime

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
État français
French state
Flag of France.svg Le cartouche de l'État Français.svg
flag coat of arms
Motto : Travail, Famille, Patrie
( French for "work, family, fatherland")
Constitution Constitutional Law of July 10, 1940
Official language French
Capital Vichy (de facto)
Paris (de jure)
Sigmaringen (in exile 1944–1945)
Form of government Dictatorial republic
Form of government Authoritarianism
Head of state Head of State Philippe Pétain (1940–1944)
Head of government Prime Minister Pierre Laval (1940)
Pierre-Étienne Flandin (1940–1941)
François Darlan (1941–1942)
Pierre Laval (1942–1944)
currency French Franc
Beginning 1940
The End 1944
National anthem Marseillaise (official)
Maréchal, nous voilà (unofficial)
Time zone Universal Time + 1 (from October 1940)
France in World War II from June 1940
  • managed directly by Germany (Alsace-Lorraine)
  • restricted access; intended for German settlement
  • zone occupied by Germany
  • managed from Brussels
  • Coastal zone; Access prohibited
  • zone occupied by Italy
  • unoccupied zone (until November 1942)
  • In retrospect, the Vichy regime (French Régime de Vichy ) is the name given to the government of the État français ("French state") after the military defeat against the German Reich recognized with the armistice of June 22, 1940 (see Western campaign ). With the constitutional law of July 10, 1940, the Vichy regime replaced the Third French Republic . It existed until 1944 and was named after its seat of government, the health resort Vichy in Auvergne .

    The way to Vichy

    On June 16, 1940, with the inclusion of French Army Groups 2 and 3, the collapse of the French defense against the German campaign in the west became apparent. When Prime Minister Paul Reynaud pleaded in Parliament for the continuation of the war on the side of the Allies and the conclusion of the Anglo -French union proposed by Winston Churchill , he remained in the minority and resigned. Thereupon President Albert Lebrun entrusted his deputy, the popular Marshal Pétain , the "hero of the Battle of Verdun " in the First World War, with the formation of a government and the initiation of armistice negotiations .

    The Compiègne armistice was signed in Compiègne on June 22, 1940. Among other things, he brought the de facto division of France into a northern and western part under German military administration as well as an unoccupied southern part (about 40% of the country's area) with Vichy as the seat of the French government. This government basically claimed to continue to be responsible for all of France, including the overseas territories. According to this view, Alsace and Lorraine remained part of France under constitutional law. Contrary to this view, however, these eastern departments were still subordinated to a " Chief of Civil Administration " (CdZ) in the summer of 1940 ; French protests were ignored by the German side. A " Germanization policy " followed in preparation for a later annexation .

    General Charles de Gaulle , the Cabinet Reynaud Secretary pleaded as Reynaud for the continuation of the struggle against the German Reich, went to Britain and established on June 18 from London via the French-speaking BBC transmitter Radio Londres an appeal to all Frenchmen, the To continue the fight from the colonies if necessary . The Forces françaises libres (FFL; for example: French Free Forces) founded by de Gaulle began fighting alongside the British armed forces at the end of July 1940 with a strength of around 7,000 men. De Gaulle was sentenced to death in absentia by the Vichy regime for treason ; The Vichy regime and the German occupying power saw the FFL as irregulars .


    The standard of the head of state in the Vichy state. The official state flag was still the previous flag of France .

    The National Assembly of the Third Republic passed a law on July 10, 1940 by 569 votes to 80, with which Marshal Pétain was authorized to proclaim a constitution for the État français (instead of the République ) in one or more acts ; this constitution must guarantee “the rights of work, the family and the fatherland”.

    The next day, Pétain announced the first three constitutional acts, in which he declared himself Chef d'État (head of state) with the right to give instructions to the executive , legislative and judicial branches . With constitutional act number 4 on July 12th, he declared Pierre Laval to be his deputy.


    Formal governance

    Under constitutional law, the whole of France was subject to the Vichy regime, with the exception of Alsace and Lorraine , which had been placed under German administration in the Compiègne armistice . Furthermore, a small area in the south-east of the country (including Monaco and Nice ) was under Italian administration, the occupation of which was only tolerated by the German and Vichy governments.

    Actual balance of power

    In fact, the administrative sovereignty only extended over 40% of the motherland and the overseas territories. After the defeat of France, most of the northern zone was subordinate to the German military commander in Paris, the two northernmost departments on the English Channel , Nord and Pas-de-Calais , the one in Brussels . In the occupied territories, all laws and decrees of the Vichy regime had to be countersigned by the German military administration.

    On November 10 and 11, 1942, two days after the Allies landed in North Africa , Germans and Italians also occupied the previously unoccupied southern zone of France in " Operation Anton ". Thus the Vichy regime had largely lost its little de facto power. Nevertheless, the Germans left the Vichy regime in office. They decided that the French administration should be retained. On December 18, 1942, Hitler said that it was wise to “maintain the fiction of a French government with Pétain. Therefore one should keep Pétain as a kind of ghost and let Laval inflate him from time to time if he collapses a little too much. ”Despite the occupation of the country and the associated loss of all decision-making power, the Vichy government did not resign. but left it with a protest against the breach of the armistice agreement.

    After the successful Allied invasion of Normandy , the members of the Vichy regime were forcibly brought to Sigmaringen Castle in August 1944 . There the puppet regime of the État français continued until the German surrender .

    Political goals

    Philippe Pétain and Adolf Hitler on October 24, 1940 in Montoire, in the middle Paul-Otto Schmidt as interpreter, on the right Joachim von Ribbentrop

    Pétain proclaimed a neutral France that wanted to keep equidistant between the belligerent parties. With this in mind, on October 24, 1940, at a meeting with Hitler in Montoire , he refused France to participate in the war on the side of the German Reich. However , Pétain considered a collaboration ( collaboration ) with the German Reich to be necessary to ensure the supply of the population, to keep the type and scope of the material, personal and industrial exploitation of the country within limits and to repatriate the approximately two million French soldiers from German captivity to reach.

    Pétain was personally convinced that the internal turmoil of the country and the decline of traditional values ​​had contributed significantly to the military defeat. In the so-called Riom Trial (February 1942 to May 1943), responsibility for this was to be shifted to the most important politicians and military officials of recent years. Pétain now wanted to lead the French to a new unity in a national revolution . So he had the slogan Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité (“ Freedom, Equality, Fraternity ”) found in all public buildings replaced by the motto Travail, Famille, Patrie (“Work, Family, Fatherland”).

    Domestic politics

    The defeat in 1940 came as a great shock to the French. The deep gaps within society were seen as one of the main reasons. Pétain was unaffected by the defeat. Due to his legendary reputation from the First World War, he was now seen by the majority of the French and despite his old age as the right man to unite the country and lead through the turbulence of the coming years. The majority also accepted the new authoritarian constitution and were prepared to remain neutral and to cooperate with the German authorities, which would lead to the relaxation of the armistice conditions. The Vichy regime was therefore initially welcomed by a majority. The historian Henri Amouroux spoke of forty million pétainists. However, when the expected easing did not materialize and the turn of the war with additional hardship emerged, the Vichy regime lost its reputation. The Pétain government held out - with restrictions - until the victory of the Allies.

    After the elimination of parliament, the interest groups rearranged themselves. The communists were banned, the socialists in protest against the authoritarian constitution in the opposition. In addition to the "conservatives", who welcomed the Pétain government but rejected cooperation with the Axis powers, the " Action française ", which wanted to replace the republican system with a monarchy and did not oppose moderate collaboration negatively , was also significant. The fascist circles organized themselves in the Parti populaire français (PPF) under Jacques Doriot and in the Rassemblement national populaire (RNP) under Marcel Déat .

    One of the most important domestic political goals was to improve sporting opportunities, especially for the youth. Here they agreed with the political ideas of other fascist systems, but saw sport instead of the military as an opportunity - as in Germany after the First World War - to physically arm the youth for a future war . With Jean Borotra , a State Secretary for Youth and Sport was created for the first time, with 1.9 billion francs more funds than all French sport in the interwar period. The centralization of sport under Pétain served as a model for the promotion of sport in post-war France until today.

    Youth camps (Chantiers de la Jeunesse) were set up in the unoccupied part of the country and in North Africa. Young people, including from the occupied area, could apply for the eight-month voluntary service. Later it became possible to extend the service for a further eight months and thus avoid forced labor in industrial companies of the Nazi state .

    Anti-Jewish Policy

    Within a few days of the establishment of the État Français on July 11, 1940, the Vichy regime passed a series of laws against foreign Jews living in the country. On July 17, 1940 it was decided that employment in the public service should only be possible if the father of a person concerned was French. With further laws on August 16 and September 10, 1940, this regulation was extended to the medical professions and members of the Barreau , the legal profession. In addition, all past naturalizations should be checked. On August 27, 1940, the Loi Marchandeau , which made anti-Semitic press coverage a criminal offense, was abolished. The proceedings against foreign Jews reached a preliminary climax in the Internment Act of October 4, 1940. Now this group of people could be interned without giving reasons: “The foreign nationals of Jewish race (ressortissants étrangers de race juive) can with the promulgation of this law on the basis of a decision of the prefect of the department in which they are domiciled in special camps (camps spéciaux). ”In addition, since June / July 1940, the French government has been working on a“ Jewish statute ”, which entails a comprehensive“ purge ”of the administration and the state controlled professions in the fields of justice, medicine, education and culture. As the historian Michael Mayer demonstrated in 2007, the Statute des Juifs issued on October 3, 1940 was the expression of an autonomous French “Jewish policy” that was not exposed to any direct and almost no indirect German influence. On June 2, 1941, the Statute des Juifs was further tightened so that the Jewish population was now subject to extensive legal discrimination.

    Foreign policy

    Although Pétain broke off diplomatic relations with Great Britain after the Royal Navy bombarded the Mers-el-Kébir fleet , the government in Vichy was initially still recognized by the Allies as the legitimate representative of the French. It was primarily the United States that maintained close relations with Vichy through its Ambassador, Admiral William D. Leahy . President Franklin Roosevelt and Secretary of State Cordell Hull , like Churchill, wanted to avoid driving Pétain into Hitler's arms through isolation. Churchill (after the end of the war):

    “Whatever happened in the past, [Oran!] France was our companion in suffering, and nothing but an open war between us could prevent it from being our companion in victory. This policy was a heavy burden for de Gaulle, who had risked everything and held the flag high, but whose handful of supporters outside France could never claim to form a real French counter-government. "

    Since de Gaulle was also a difficult, idiosyncratic partner for the Allies, the latter looked for a more prominent, more accommodating leader after their landing in French North Africa in 1942/43. Since neither ex-Prime Minister Reynaud nor General Weygand were available, they initially resorted to Admiral François Darlan , despite concerns about his past loyal to Vichy . After his murder in Algiers, which took place shortly afterwards, and which has not yet been fully clarified, the Americans in particular tried to build up General Henri Giraud , who had fled from German captivity a few months earlier, as an opponent of de Gaulle. The honorable but politically inexperienced Giraud was finally recognized by the Allies together with de Gaulle as the dual leadership of the “Free French”, but lost during the year, among other things. a. due to wrong military decisions, any influence on further development. In addition, de Gaulle had a trump card in hand since mid-1943. One of his collaborators, Jean Moulin , succeeded on May 15 in persuading the most important groups of the Resistance to found the Conseil national de la Resistance (CNR), whose first declaration was the demand for a provisional government under the leadership of de To form Gaulle. This happened just one day later with the establishment of the “ French Committee for National Liberation ” (CFLN) in Algiers.

    This preliminary stage to a counter-government was another heavy blow to the government in Vichy after the occupation of the Vichy Territory by the German military in November 1942 (as a reaction to the Allied landing in North Africa).


    Apart from the unoccupied national territory, the regime initially had all the colonies as well as an army of 100,000 men and the French navy. The Légion française des combattants , the war veterans' organization from which Joseph Darnand and high officers recruited disappointed fighters in late summer 1941 , had also existed since the autumn of 1940. They founded a secret military organization in the Alpes-Maritimes department under the name Service d'ordre légionnaire (SOL) , which was to be used in another Italian aggression against French territory. By the end of 1941 it had developed into a serious armed force that received the official blessing of the Vichy regime in January 1942 as additional protection for France from external and internal aggression. Towards the end of the summer of 1942, Darnand recruited volunteers for the Légion volontaires français (LVF), the Légion anti-bolchévique or Légion tricolore , in which French volunteers in German uniforms fought against the Soviet Union.

    The collaboration

    French militiaman guards resistance fighters

    The cooperation of the civilian population and the French authorities with the German Reich is still a highly politically explosive topic today, as there are still different opinions about the degree and scope of acceptable cooperation. It is undisputed that the Vichy government led to a very far-reaching form of collaboration , some of which was voluntary, but mainly because of actual or promised consideration or extortion.

    Political cooperation

    The state collaboration was publicly initiated after the meeting of Marshal Pétain and Hitler in Montoire-sur-le-Loir on October 24, 1940 with the handshake of Montoire . This symbolic image was opposed to General de Gaulle's radio address on the BBC , in which he announced that he would continue his struggle on the side of the Allies . Although Pierre Laval had held preliminary talks with leading National Socialists (including Hitler himself) two days earlier at the same location, the Montoire meeting ultimately only produced a meager record of success: Neither side entered into concrete agreements. Only the principle of collaboration was announced, with the German side being careful not to define the content of this agreement too precisely.

    Like Laval, Pétain hoped to put the German side to the test after the Montoire meeting by showing goodwill. In return, Germany should also make concessions, such as: B. the return of the French prisoners of war, a change in the demarcation line between the military occupied northern zone and the unoccupied southern zone or the return of the French government to Versailles . Due to his hostility to France, however, Hitler was not prepared to make the slightest concessions to the defeated nation. Rather, he saw cooperation with the Vichy regime as a tactical and strategic tool in the ongoing conflict with Great Britain and the planned invasion of the Soviet Union. Ultimately, his aim was to neutralize France with the least possible means, to control it economically and at the same time ensure that the Vichy regime would oppose any attempt by the Gaullists and the British to occupy North Africa.

    In his radio address on October 30, 1940, Pétain stated that he was now taking the path of collaboration: "j'entre aujourd'hui dans la voie de la collaboration". In the following period, however, he was disappointed in the absence of concrete agreements and a lack of concession from Hitler: he had hit nothing (rien du tout) , an average person who had not learned his historical lessons (un médiocre qui n'a pas retenu les leçons de l'histoire) and downplayed the importance of the Montoire meeting, which was planned from the beginning as an informal consultation meeting (tour d'horizon) . On December 13, 1940, Pétain dismissed his deputy Laval for conducting negotiations that were too idiosyncratic, but ultimately for domestic political reasons. Ultimately, however, Pétain did not draw any conclusions from the failure of his policy. He and Laval continued to expect a German final victory and wanted to make France a privileged partner in Hitler's European policy . They completely misunderstood that Hitler wanted nothing more than to make France a tributary vassal who could be exploited at will . The only difference between the two politicians' ideas of collaboration was a degree of degree: In Pétain's case, more reactionary and nationalist motives played a role, while Laval thought more in European contexts.

    To show its goodwill, the Vichy regime often anticipated or over-fulfilled German demands. The services in return of the occupying power were rather limited, the costs of the occupation actually rose continuously until the end. In return , Pétain and Laval achieved the return of less than 100,000 prisoners of war who would have been sent back for reasons of age and health anyway for the recruitment of 600,000 to 650,000 workers for the Service du travail obligatoire (STO) .

    Among the collaborators who belonged to or supported the various governments of the Vichy regime, Fernand de Brinon deserves special mention, Vichy's general representative in the occupied northern zone from 1941 to 1944, who was a great admirer of the “Third Reich” even before the war was. Also worth mentioning are Jacques Benoist-Méchin , Darlan's main advisor in negotiations with Hitler (1941–1942); Gaston Bruneton , social officer for the (partly voluntary, partly compulsory) French workers in Germany, who worked closely with the German Labor Front (DAF); Jean Bichelonne , first Minister for Industrial Production , later for Transport, or the writer Abel Bonnard , known as Gestapette , who became Minister for National Education in 1942. In 1944 the fascist convicts Joseph Darnand , Philippe Henriot and Marcel Déat became members of the government under German pressure.

    While numerous Parisian collaborators openly despised the Vichy regime, which for them was too reactionary and insufficiently committed to working with the Third Reich, others declared themselves, e.g. B. Darnand to unconditional supporters of Marshal Pétain. Jacques Doriot , the leader of the Parti populaire français (PPF), presented himself to the public as un homme du Maréchal (a man of the marshal) until the end of 1941 . Pierre Laval , the most important Vichy politician after Pétain, had very close political ties with Déat and Darnand and personally took over the management of the Milice française , a violent organization that supported the Gestapo to the utmost.

    Economic Cooperation

    In this context, the term economic collaboration means above all that the Vichy regime implemented the policy of the German occupying power. The formal obligation to do so resulted initially from the war debt, which was theoretically determined in the armistice of June 1940, but in practice was unilaterally determined by the Germans, as they changed the exchange rate of the French franc to the German mark at will. This war debt, originally intended to support the occupation troops, averaged 400 million francs a day, which at that time corresponded to about 4 million daily wages of workers. Although France was subject to economic exploitation (in the form of the removal of raw materials and the requisition and transfer of railway locomotives, machine tools, engines of all kinds, iron construction halls, ammunition manufacturing machines, special mining equipment, cranes and other industrial values), the German occupying power clearly recognized that economic life had to be designed as normal as possible if the conquered industrial capacities were to be used for their own war economy. For this reason, brutal dictation was avoided and the Pétain government was given a certain degree of independence.

    In October 1940 there were one million unemployed in France as a result of the military defeat (taking into account that the 1.5 million French prisoners of war who were employed in Germany for almost the entire duration of the war were withdrawn from the French labor market ). Soon after the armistice, the Vichy government authorized French companies to sign treaties with Germany. German orders became the main driving force behind the resurgence of the French economy. By April 1941, French companies had booked orders worth 1.5 billion Reichsmarks; by autumn 1942 it was already over four billion Reichsmarks. France became the main European supplier to the Third Reich during World War II. For example, the Renault company was able to quintuple its sales between 1940 and 1942. The French wine industry, which was still suffering from the effects of the global economic crisis , immediately came to terms with the occupying power and experienced an unexpected boom in the period that followed. The number of unemployed fell to 125,000 by 1942 and by the time of liberation there was practically full employment . The German occupying power occupied large parts of French agriculture and industry with the occupation costs. According to the statistics of the Office central de la production industrial , in 1943 100% of the aviation industry, 100% of the heavy industry, 80% of the construction industry and 60% of the rubber industry produced on behalf of the Germans. Henry Rousso notes that these figures are probably a little too high overall, but that the figures are largely correct. Eberhard Jäckel states that in the spring of 1942 around 170,000 French were working directly for the Wehrmacht , 275,000 in building airports and fortifications such as the Atlantic Wall, and finally 400,000 in arms production.

    In accordance with the German economic organization, twelve Comités d'organisation (CO), structured according to sectors and products, and an Office central de répartition des produits industriels (OCRPI) were established, which were under the supervision of the Ministry of Industrial Production . These managed the 321 French corporations, coordinated the allocation of raw materials and deliveries to the German authorities, and also provided information on raw material stocks in the unoccupied areas. The Vichy regime used its dirigistic economic system on the one hand to cope with the existentially important German production and delivery orders, but on the other hand also tried to limit the German influence on the economy as far as possible. An attempt was made to limit the uncontrolled inflow of German capital; however, the establishment of German-French mixed companies under public control was made possible (e.g. Francolor (51% stake of IG Farben ); France-Rayonne (subsidiary of Rhône-Poulenc for textile synthetics; 33% German stake); Théraplix (medicines ); the industrial gas manufacturer Imbert ). The regime was unable to prevent German concentration measures in “ Aryanized ” economic sectors (leather, clothing industry, trade), but tried to transfer as many of the expropriated assets as possible into “French” hands.

    A particularly inglorious form of economic collaboration of the Vichy regime was its involvement in the compulsory obligation of workers for use in Germany. By spring 1942, despite the forced recruitment of miners and metal workers in the occupied zone and the recruitment of French volunteers for the German armaments industry, only 50,000 French were active in Germany. Since these numbers were far below what Hitler had promised, thousands of French were forcibly recruited by the Vichy regime. When Albert Speer drastically increased war production in Germany in February 1942 , Fritz Sauckel , the general representative for labor , demanded on May 15 that another 250,000 workers be sent to Germany, including 150,000 skilled workers. Laval hoped to achieve this goal through the Relève , as the return of 50,000 prisoners of war had been promised if the goal was achieved. However, since word of the poor diet and bad treatment of the volunteers got around, only 16,800 skilled workers registered for the service in Germany. In return, only 1,000 prisoners of war were allowed to return home. In order to meet the desired quota, Laval passed a law that made men between the ages of 18 and 50 and single women between 21 and 35 also compulsory abroad. When Sauckel had received the required number of 240,000 French forced laborers by the end of 1942, he demanded a further 250,000 workers on January 2, 1943, which could be met on the basis of the Service du travail obligatoire (STO) launched on February 16, 1943 . However, the STO soon showed its downside: young French people threatened by the STO went underground more and more . The third action, which should bring another 500,000 workers from August 6, 1943, was only fulfilled to 20%. The fourth action at the beginning of 1944 only brought in 50,000 forced laborers.

    The German side was able to put pressure on the Vichy regime not only because of the armistice agreements, but also because of the behavior of many French commercial enterprises. Often they made direct contact with business representatives of the Third Reich and thus bypassed the attempts to control their own government. Under the pressure of its own financial and industrial circles, the Vichy regime ultimately had to agree to almost every concession, which ultimately led to an excess of economic collaboration.

    Military cooperation

    The Paris Protocols

    The vice-president of the Vichy regime after Laval's dismissal , Admiral Darlan , on the other hand, saw the collaboration with Germany as a long-term strategy, according to which France should join the continental system under German leadership, turning away from its previous diplomatic tradition. He met on 11 and 12 May 1941 in Berchtesgaden with Hitler together who wanted to win it for an expanded military cooperation. Darlan then signed the three protocols of Paris on May 28, 1941 with Otto Abetz , the German ambassador to France (Protocol I for Syria and Lebanon ; Protocol II for Bizerta and Tunisia ; Protocol III for French West Africa and French Equatorial Africa as well as a Additional protocol to the demands made by the Vichy regime for more resources in the event of an Allied attack). Marshal Pétain confirmed the wording of the protocols expressly in a telegram to General Dentz , the French high commissioner for Syria and Lebanon . Germany was promised the use of the French bases in Syria, French arms deliveries to Iraqi insurgents under Raschid Ali al-Gailani , the German Africa Corps to travel through French-controlled Tunisia and the overhaul of ships of the German navy in Dakar . In return, Germany should cut crew charges by a quarter, release 100,000 prisoners of war and authorize the rearmament of some French warships.

    Flag of the Milice Française

    On December 21, 1941, General Juin and Hermann Göring met again in Berlin to agree on the use of the French naval base in Bizerta by the German Africa Corps . Since Vichy demanded reinforcement of the French troops in Africa as well as a weakening of the armistice conditions from 1940 were rejected by the German side, these negotiations failed.

    The militia

    The Milice française was put together on January 30, 1943 by the Vichy regime from members of the Service d'ordre légionnaire (SOL) and used as an auxiliary force of the German army, e.g. B. 1944 when fighting the Maquis in the Vercors . The command was nominally Laval, but the actual management was in the hands of Joseph Darnand . The number of armed men in the milice eventually reached 30,000. From January 1944, these forces were mainly used in the northern zone, where they were mostly used by the military commander in the fight against the Resistance . Darnand also set up the Groupes mobiles de réserve (GMR) and proposed the establishment of a Groupe franc de la garde under his direct control to break up the Maquis des Glières ( Haute-Savoie department ), but this was rejected by the German side.

    Police cooperation

    Carl Oberg (center) in conversation with Pierre Laval

    After the armistice of June 1940 , the German occupiers looked for Spanish republicans in the prisoner-of-war camps , as Hitler was still trying to persuade Franco to join the war on the German side. The Vichy regime did not raise any objection to the fact that the majority of those found in this way were sent to the Mauthausen concentration camp . Although the fight against the French communists was not of great importance for the German occupiers until the invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, the Vichy regime continued the measures against the communists already started by the Daladier government . After the communists joined the Resistance and began to commit attacks, communists arrested by the French police were extradited to the German occupying forces.

    René Bousquet (on the right in a fur coat) on January 23, 1943 in Marseille at a briefing on the occasion of the "evacuation" of the harbor area , with SS-Sturmbannführer Bernhard Griese (2nd from left)

    After General Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel was appointed military commander in France in February 1942 , he demanded a clear separation between military and political tasks for his area of ​​responsibility. Since this was in line with the ideas of Himmler and Heydrich , who wanted to expand their sphere of influence within Europe, Hitler appointed SS General Carl Oberg on March 9, 1942, as Higher SS and Police Leader for occupied France. His deputy was SS-Standartenführer Helmut Bone as the commander of the security police and the SD . Under their supervision and on their orders, the French police were to take measures against criminals, Jews and communists. At that time, the German police force in France comprised only three battalions with around 3,000 men (compared to 5,000 in the occupied Netherlands ). For arrests, the Germans had to fall back on the 47,000 French police officers in the occupied zone. Two months after the Wannsee Conference , Heydrich visited France for the first time from May 5 to 12, 1942 in order to improve police cooperation: he promised greater independence for the police forces in the occupied zone, provided that they consistently suppress all enemies of the occupation forces, who are also the enemies of the national revolution .

    In April 1942, Pierre Laval appointed the administrative specialist René Bousquet as Secretary General of the Police. This was based on the assumption that the occupying power would entrust control of a sufficiently armed police in both zones to the Vichy government if the German side could be convinced of the unconditional collaboration of the French police. This attitude went well with the plans of Oberg, Bone and their superior Heydrich, who, unlike their predecessors, relied on the French police. Giving them more autonomy and responsibility brought considerable advantages without increasing their own risk: more effectiveness, less patriotic reactions from the French population, more commitment from the police officers who had been compromised by their cooperation.

    Destruction du quartier du Vieux-Port January 1943
    Demolition of residential buildings in the old port district of Marseille

    The registration of all Jews in the Seine department by means of the so-called Tulard files by the police prefecture of Paris took place from October 1941 on German orders and became the organizational basis for the raids, which from May 1941 initially still carried out jointly by the German occupying power and the French police were. Based on agreements between Bousquet and Oberg in July 1942, the raids on Jews were only carried out by the French police. French gendarmerie and customs officers were also tasked with monitoring the access routes and the vicinity of the Drancy assembly center.

    The French police were supposed to pursue all resistance fighters, but remained relatively cautious in their actions in the Sud zone until November 1942. During this phase, the intelligence services of the Navy and the Armistice Army were essentially active in the fight against the Resistance (which, however, did not prevent some members of the Army Intelligence Service from secretly joining the Resistance). On August 25, 1942, two hundred German police officers were allowed to enter the southern zone with false French papers and radio test vehicles in order to track down secret transmitters. Police cooperation continued even after the southern zone was occupied by German troops in November 1942. One of the last major operations of the French police was the "evacuation" of the port area in Marseille from January 22nd to 24th, 1943. On January 24th, the port area was blown up by the police, some of whom, however, because of their ties to the German rulers Mitigating the originally planned measures could be achieved.

    From 1943 the fight against the Resistance was completely transferred to the Milice française under Joseph Darnand , in particular the fight against the Maquis .

    Deportations of Jews

    A heavy burden for the regime is the partially voluntary willingness to cooperate with the German authorities in the registration, discrimination, arrest and deportation of Jews and other ethnic minorities persecuted by the Nazi regime to the extermination camps and the confiscation ( Aryanization ) of their property. So first in October 1940 and then in June 1941 “Statuts des juifs” (special laws for Jews) were introduced, even before the German authorities had even requested it. However, wearing the “ Jewish star ” was only mandatory in the occupied area. However, the Vichy regime did not protest against the introduction of the “yellow star” in the occupied zone and, for its part, had the Juif stamp stamped on identity papers .

    French police check arriving Jews at the Pithiviers internment camp

    The deportations, in which French authorities also participated, were initiated by Theodor Dannecker 's Jewish Department, which was set up in Paris in September 1940 and was subordinate to the Reich Security Main Office (RSHA) of the SS and with Helmut Bone , the head of the Security Police (Sipo), and Carl Oberg , the Higher SS and Police Leader, worked together. In March 1941, at the instigation of the Germans, the French government appointed a “General Commissioner for Jewish Questions” ( commissaire géneral aux questions juives ). Until 1942 this was Xavier Vallat . He was given legal powers to intervene in other ministries on Jewish issues and even to deploy police forces. The Germans were not satisfied with Vallat's leadership in the persecution of the Jews and saw to it that he was replaced by Louis Darquier de Pellepoix on May 6, 1942 .

    On the basis of the Oberg-Bousquet agreements of May 1942, the French police took part in the Rafle du Vélodrome d'Hiver in Paris on July 16 and 17, 1942 . The arrested people were distributed to various camps, including the Drancy assembly camp . On August 26, 1942, René Bousquet organized a raid in the zone libre and the subsequent deportation of 10,000 non-French Jews. A total of 130,000 foreign and 70,000 French Jews from the southern zone were finally brought to the extermination camps in German-occupied Eastern Europe via the Drancy assembly camp. A total of 76,000 French Jews were deported to Auschwitz , 40% of whom were arrested by the French police. The Milice française was involved in the arrest of 25,000 deported French Jews.

    When the evacuation began, the German military administration justified this only with the necessity of the "evacuation of the Jews to the east", with "labor" and " forced labor ". From the seventh transport in July 1942, the rule that only men fit for work should be deported was softened and later dropped entirely. When old people, women and (since August 1942) even children of all ages were deported, it was clear that it was no longer just about work assignments. The occupying power kept less and less to the agreement with the Vichy government not to deport any French Jews, and from mid-1943 no longer at all. Most recently, the Sonderkommando Alois Brunner searched for the last hidden Jews in the unoccupied south of France.

    Collaboration interfaces

    The German authorities had three interfaces with their French employees:

    • The military commander for occupied France (MBF) with his staff made up of Wehrmacht personnel and civilian experts resided in the Hotel Majestic in Paris . He was subordinate to the High Command of the Army (OKH) and, in addition to military and economic tasks, initially also had security-political tasks. As head of the administration department, Werner Best was the de facto "over-interior minister of France" there until 1942.
    • Mainly political issues were dealt with by Ambassador Otto Abetz , who was subordinate to the German Foreign Office and thus Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop . He resided in the Palais Beauharnais . His employees included Ernst Achenbach (head of the political department), SS-Brigadführer Werner Gerlach (head of the cultural department), Karl Epting (cultural affairs), the lawyer Friedrich Grimm and embassy counselor Friedrich Sieburg (former correspondent of the Frankfurter Zeitung ), who already had Experience in pre-war France. " Judenreferent " was Carltheo Zeitschel , SS-Sturmbannführer and Legation Councilor, who became one of the engines of the " Final Solution in France", that is, the evacuation and murder of the Jews. Around 25 people at the embassy were occupied with Jewish issues - including Ernst Achenbach.
    • The third sphere of influence on the German side was under Heinrich Himmler : the members of the law enforcement and security police forces as well as the SD who were responsible for collecting news, for maintaining peace and order in cooperation with the French authorities, and for the registration and deportation of Jews and others undesirable ethnic groups were responsible.

    Between these three German spheres of power - especially between the embassy and the SS - there were repeated disputes, which were promoted by the inadequate delimitation of competencies. Abetz and the embassy favored Laval and the founder of the Rassemblement national populaire (RNP), Marcel Déat , while the SS sponsored Jacques Doriot , head of the Parti populaire français (PPF). What the German occupation authorities had in common was that they were skeptical of Pétain's goal of building a one-party state based on the German or Italian model and were anxious to promote the latent political, religious, regional and other intra-French contradictions in order to prevent the formation of an anti-German united front.


    With the conclusion of the armistice in 1940, there was a split in public opinion. Some sympathized early on with Free France under de Gaulle. The vast majority of the population, however, waited and supported a Franco-German collaboration . These supporters also included the members of the banned Communist Party (PCF), whose representatives, led by Jacques Duclos , arrived in Paris on June 15, 1940, shortly after the German troops from Belgium. On June 27, 1940 Maurice Tréand (responsible for the underground activities of the PCF) and Maître Fossin (lawyer for the Soviet embassy) presented a memorandum to the German ambassador Abetz:

    1. Support all measures to keep France out of the war
    2. Support of the colonial peoples in the fight for their freedom
    3. Conclusion of a friendship treaty between Vichy and USSR

    After consulting with Hitler, Abetz declined the offer, whereupon Tréand and Fossin were dropped by Moscow, although Duclos stressed their innocence.

    The unsettled communists subsequently behaved largely neutral. Serious active resistance in the country began with Hitler's war against the Soviet Union . The various resistance movements of the Resistance were summarized on May 27, 1943 by Jean Moulin , an envoy from de Gaulle, in the " Conseil national de la Résistance ".

    Chronology of France in World War II



    • March 21: After forbidding democratic Finland from the public support demanded during the winter war against the Soviet Union , Édouard Daladier resigns as French Prime Minister . Daladier was considered a representative of the appeasement policy. The previous Finance Minister Paul Reynaud ( AD ) will be the new head of government . The governing coalition has a majority of one vote in the Chamber of Deputies .
    • April 9th: Landing of the German Wehrmacht in the neutral states of Denmark and Norway ( company Weser exercise ).
    • April 14-19: To provide military support to Norway, extensive Allied forces land in Narvik ( Battle of Narvik ). France sends parts of the Foreign Legion .
    • May 10th: Without a previous declaration of war, the Wehrmacht invades the neutral states of the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg .
    • May 13-15: Bypassing the Maginot Line, German armored units cross the Ardennes, which were considered impassable . In the Battle of Sedan they break through the front unexpectedly and cross the Meuse . Then they break out of their bridgehead towards the English Channel ( sickle section plan ). Faced with the military crisis, Reynaud spoke on the phone with the new British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on May 15 that France had lost the battle.
    • May 18: The unexpectedly quick advance of the Wehrmacht shakes the confidence of the French people in the government. In order to strengthen the defense readiness of the French, Prime Minister Reynaud is forced to reshuffle his cabinet: the popular Marshal Philippe Pétain ( Hero of Verdun ) is recalled from his post as ambassador in Spain and joins the government as deputy prime minister. Georges Mandel becomes the new Interior Minister , Reynaud himself takes over the Ministry of Defense . Édouard Daladier becomes Foreign Minister .
    • May 19: Paul Reynaud replaces the hapless Commander-in-Chief Maurice Gamelin with Général Maxime Weygand . The large number of civilian refugees significantly hinders the mobility of the Allied forces.
    • 20./21. May: The German troops stand on the Scheldt and reach the English Channel at Abbeville . As a result of the advance, large units of the BEF and the French army in northern France are enclosed and retreat to Dunkerque . The British Commander-in-Chief Lord Gort begins preparations for an evacuation according to Churchill's instructions.
    • May 26th - June 5th: Battle of Dunkirk . Due to Hitler's stop order, the Royal Navy succeeds in embarking around 370,000 Allied soldiers across the English Channel to Great Britain ( Operation Dynamo ). The Wehrmacht entered the city on June 4th.
    • May 28: Belgium surrenders.
    • June 5th: With the " Fall Rot " the Western campaign enters the decisive, second phase. On the one hand, the Allied southern wing was to be enclosed along the Maginot Line as far as Switzerland , and on the other hand, the Wehrmacht was to advance towards Paris . With the remaining forces, the majority of which will remain on the Maginot Line, the French Army has set up a reception position south of the Somme and Aisne , the Weygand Line .
    • June 6: Prime Minister Reynaud appoints Charles de Gaulle as Secretary of State in the Ministry of Defense. Reynaud fires Daladier and takes over the foreign ministry himself.
    • June 8th: Due to the situation in Western Europe, the Allies withdraw their forces from Narvik, Norway ( Battle of Narvik ). Norway surrenders on June 10th.
    • June 9: Despite bitter resistance, the Weygand Line does not hold up to the German offensive. German associations cross the Seine .
    • JUNE 10: The Fascist Italy declared war on France and Great Britain, however, first accesses not enter the fighting.
      • The French government leaves Paris and fled the approaching Wehrmacht to Tours .
    • June 11th: Général Weygand appeals to the government to put an end to the destruction of the French army and to ask the German Reich to announce the terms of the armistice. Two camps are formed in the cabinet: Reynaud, Mandel and de Gaulle want to continue the resistance at all costs, if necessary from French North Africa . Marshal Pétain joins Weygand and calls for negotiations on a ceasefire.
    • June 13: Winston Churchill demands tough resistance from France, but refuses to use the Royal Air Force. The air forces would have to protect Great Britain against an expected German invasion.
    • June 14th: The Wehrmacht occupies Paris , which has been declared an open city .
      • The French constitutional organs reach Bordeaux . Paul Reynaud wants the army to surrender while the government continues resistance from within the colonies.
    • June 16: After a majority of the French cabinet rejects a British-French state union offered by Churchill and the continuation of military resistance against the Axis powers , Prime Minister Reynaud resigns. President Albert Lebrun then appoints Marshal Pétain as the new head of government. He considers further resistance to be hopeless and instructs the new Foreign Minister Paul Baudouin to ask the German Reich for an armistice over Spain .
    • June 17: Pétain announces request for armistice negotiations on the radio. In many places, the French armed forces stop resisting and are taken prisoners of war .
    • June 18: In a radio address broadcast repeatedly, Charles de Gaulle, who fled to London, calls on the French to continue the war against the Axis powers on the side of Great Britain ( appeal of June 18 ). The call will be posted in the non-occupied part of France.
    • June 20: France has to approve the stationing of Japanese troops in French Indochina .
    • June 22nd: Conclusion of the Franco-German armistice in Compiègne between Germany and Pétains État français . The contract divides u. a. France into a northern and western part under German military administration and an unoccupied southern zone (around 40 percent of the territory). France is only allowed to maintain a force of 100,000 men, the status of the colonies remains unaffected. The armistice will officially come into effect on June 25th.
    • July 1st: National Assembly and Government move from Bordeaux to Vichy , which is in the unoccupied zone. The spa town of Vichy will de facto become the new capital of France.
    • July 3: In order to prevent a possible extradition to the German Reich, the Royal Navy shoots at the French naval unit in Mers-el-Kébir ( Operation Catapult ). 1,200 French people lose their lives in the attack, which is why Pétain breaks off diplomatic relations with Great Britain. However, contact is still being maintained through the US embassies. On July 8th, the battleship Richelieu was torpedoed by British planes in the port of Dakar .
    • July 10: In the wake of the catastrophic military defeat, the National Assembly, at the instigation of Pierre Laval, authorizes Pétain with 569 votes to 80 to draw up a constitution for the État français that guarantees the rights of work, family and fatherland. That is the de facto end of the Third Republic and the beginning of the État français. President Lebrun resigns from office.
    • July 11th: With the promulgation of the first constitutional act, Pétain declares himself Chef de l'État (Head of State) with almost absolute powers over the executive , legislative and judicial branches .
    • July 12th: Marshal Pétain appoints Pierre Laval, a staunch supporter of close relations with the German Reich, as his deputy. There is initially no prime minister.
    • July 30th: Pétain founds a 'Cour suprême de justice' by decree. The trial of Riom against Léon Blum , Édouard Daladier , Paul Reynaud , Georges Mandel , Maurice Gamelin , Guy La Chambre and Robert Jacomet was to take place before this court .
    • 28./30. August: The two colonies of French Equatorial Africa and Cameroun join de Gaulle's FFL.
    • September 24: An Allied attempt to land near Dakar ( French West Africa ) with the participation of Free French units fails due to the resistance of the Vichy troops ( battle of Dakar ).
    • 24./25. September: Bombing of Gibraltar by aircraft of the Vichy regime ( Gibraltar )
    • October 3: The Vichy regime adopts the first Jewish statute ( Lois sur le statut des Juifs ). French Jewish people are excluded from public office, the army, education and the media. Further anti-Jewish measures follow ( → see main article Chronology of the collaboration of the Vichy government in the Holocaust ).
    • October 24: At a meeting with Adolf Hitler in Montoire , Pétain rejects the proposal for France to participate in the war against Great Britain.
    • October 30: In a radio speech Petain declared that France through a collaboration ( Collaboration must participate) with the German Reich on the reorganization of Europe ( → see main article. Collaboration in France ).
    • December 13th: After continuing tensions, Pierre Laval is removed from office by Pétain and placed under house arrest. Laval had called for a greater rapprochement and even more collaboration with the German Reich.



    • January 1st: Pétain asks the German Reich to ease living conditions in France. Due to ongoing German reprisals and the unsatisfactory situation of prisoners of war and forced laborers , the regime is increasingly losing support among the population.
    • April 17: Under German pressure, Pétain replaces Prime Minister Darlan with Pierre Laval. Laval organized the deportation of Jews as well as the increased provision of French forced laborers.
    • 16./17. July: In a mass arrest, the Paris police arrest 13,152 Jews ( Rafle du Vélodrome d'Hiver ). The arrested are handed over to the German occupation authorities and deported to the extermination camps.
    • September: British troops occupy the French colony of Madagascar ( Operation Ironclad ). This is to prevent the Japanese from Madagascar from disrupting trade in the Indian Ocean and expanding their submarine radius.
    • 7th / 8th November: Allied troops land in French North Africa ( Operation Torch ). The resistance of the Vichy troops collapses after short skirmishes and the Commander-in-Chief Admiral Darlan has to surrender in Algiers . He is then removed from office by Pétain. ( → see main article French North Africa in World War II ).
    • November 11th: In response to the Allied landing in North Africa, German and Italian troops occupy the southern zone of France ( Operation Anton ). The French navy sunk itself in the military port of Toulon . The Vichy regime only protests against the German invasion of the south and sinks to the level of a puppet government .
    • November 12: With the support of the USA, Darlan proclaims himself "High Commissioner of France in Africa." He derives his legitimacy from his capacity as constitutional deputy Pétain, who is prevented from conducting state affairs by the Germans.
    • December 24th: After the assassination of Darlan, General Henri Giraud succeeds him.


    • JANUARY 30: Foundation of française Milice . This paramilitary unit is subordinate to the radical right-wing politician Joseph Darnand and has subsequently developed from an organization of the Vichy government into an independent collaborative force that works closely with the German occupation authorities. During the occupation, the milice pursued political opponents inside and supported the deportation of Jews.
    • February: Establishment of the Service du travail obligatoire . The organization is supposed to recruit French workers and bring them to the German war economy.
    • April: Pétain's official protest over Allied air strikes on French cities and armaments plants.
    • May 15: Jean Moulin founds the Conseil national de la Résistance (CNR), an umbrella organization for the main factions of the resistance movement.
    • June 3: Formation of the French National Committee (CFLN) under de Gaulle and Giraud, which receives the status of a government in exile .
    • September 20: Free French units land in Corsica and drive the Italian troops off the island by October. The beginning of the liberation of metropolitan France ( La Liberation ).


    • June 3: De Gaulle prevails against Giraud in the internal power struggle and founds a provisional government in Algiers .
    • June 6th: Allied troops land in Normandy ( Operation Overlord ).
    • June 10: Oradour massacre .
    • August 17: Since Hitler questions the continued reliability of the Vichy regime, he has the government brought to Belfort .
    • August 25: After the Allied victory in the Battle of Paris , General de Gaulle arrives in the liberated capital and, on behalf of the Provisional Government, announces the restoration of the Republic.
    • September 7th: The Vichy government is taken to Sigmaringen in Hohenzollern by order of the Führer . From October 1944 to April 21, 1945 Sigmaringen seat of government and provisional "capital of occupied France." Housed are Hohenzollern Castle , the embassies of the German Empire, Japan and Italy to the Vichy regime. In addition to the 6,000 inhabitants, there are now 500 militiamen, 700 French soldiers and several thousand refugees in the city. Marshal Petain, who had been forced to leave France, refused to participate in the government in exile, which now also includes fascist politicians such as Fernand de Brinon and Jacques Doriot .


    Since 1945

    Pétain and Laval were both sentenced to death by a French court in 1945, with Pétain's sentence later commuted to life imprisonment by General de Gaulle. Laval, who was sentenced to death and successfully ingested potassium cyanide, had his stomach pumped out before he was brought before a firing squad.

    French women accused of collaboration in Paris (summer 1944)

    After the liberation, supporters of the Resistance and other people hunted alleged and actual collaborators and supporters of the Vichy regime, which was called épuration (= "cleansing"). Estimates put up to 9,000 killings during the “wild épuration” and 6,763 death sentences by the Commission d'Épuration , of which 767 were executed (less than in Belgium, for example). The number of French women who were "pilloried" naked in public places for actual or alleged sexual relations with occupation soldiers was significantly higher. These purges, organized separately by Communists and Gaullists, were intended to bring about national catharsis and overcome the division in post-war society, but in many cases achieved the opposite. The open wounds were covered up by the political myth of glorious France, which was particularly cultivated by de Gaulle. Under this blanket, the nation seemed to be united, to which the construct that the état français had no French legal character, so, strictly speaking, was an occupation authority (this view was represented by French politics until the mid-1990s). Acceptance of this construct was made easier for the supporters of the Vichy regime through amnesties .

    A joint responsibility of the French for deportations and genocide was only granted in 1995 by a declaration by President Jacques Chirac , even if only for members of the Milice Française and the gendarmerie . On the basis of this admission, the Supreme Administrative Court ( Conseil d'État ) sentenced the state on April 12, 2002 to pay half the fine that Maurice Papon, convicted of war crimes, had to pay for his activities in the Bordeaux prefecture . The money will be given to deportation victims. This means that the French state's joint responsibility for war crimes committed by its citizens is now legally established. The state must also bear two thirds of the penalty imposed on the SNCF railway company in June 2006 for participating in the deportations.

    In 1997, on Chirac's initiative, a commission of inquiry into the plundering of French Jews ( Mission d'étude sur la spoliation des Juifs en France ) was set up under Jean Mattéoli , which in 2000 presented a report comprising several volumes. The Cabinet Jospin announced on 2 October 1997 archives from the Second World War free. The law of April 12, 2000 on the rights of citizens vis-à-vis the administration extended the right of access to state records.

    Persons connected to the Vichy regime

    See also



    • Eberhard Jäckel : France in Hitler's Europe: the German French policy in World War II . Stuttgart 1966.
    • Hans Umbreit: The military commander in France 1940-1944. Boldt, Boppard / Rh. 1968.
    • Henri Amouroux: La grande histoire des Français sous l'occupation. S. 1978 ff. (Complete works, in 10 individually available volumes), Paris 1975 to 1993, also a TB edition, German in excerpts: Der Spiegel , Serie, No. 20/1990 to 23/1990.
    • Serge Klarsfeld , Ahlrich Meyer (transl.): Vichy - Auschwitz: the cooperation of the German and French authorities in the final solution of the Jewish question in France . Greno, Nördlingen 1989, ISBN 3-89190-958-6 . (udT Vichy - Auschwitz. The “Final Solution to the Jewish Question” in France (= publications by the Ludwigsburg Research Center of the University of Stuttgart. Volume 10). WBG, Darmstadt 2007, ISBN 978-3-534-20793-0 . corrected and in the extensive list of literature and edition updated in the register) (standard work)
    • Claude Carlier, Stefan Martens (eds.): La France et l'Allemagne en Guerre (September 1939 - November 1942) / Germany and France at war (September 1939 - November 1942) . Paris 1990.
    • Gerhard Hirschfeld , Patrick Marsh (Ed.): Collaboration in France, politics, economy and culture during the National Socialist occupation 1940–1944 . S. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1991, ISBN 3-10-030407-1 .
    • Bernd Kasten: "Good French". The French police and the German occupying power in occupied France 1940–1944 (= Kiel historical studies. Volume 37). Diss. Thorbecke, Sigmaringen 1993, ISBN 3-7995-5937-X .
    • Eckard Michels : The German Institute in Paris 1940–1944. A contribution to the Franco-German cultural relations and to the foreign cultural policy of the Third Reich (=  studies on modern history 46). Steiner, Stuttgart 1993, ISBN 3-515-06381-1 (see German Institute ).
    • Bernd Zielinski: State collaboration. Vichy and the deployment of labor in the “Third Reich” . Westfälisches Dampfboot Verlag, Münster 1995, ISBN 3-929586-43-6 .
    • Wolfgang Drost u. a. (Ed.): Paris sous l'Occupation. Paris under German occupation . Lectures of the 3rd Colloquium of the Universities of Orléans and Siegen. Winter, Heidelberg 1995, ISBN 3-8253-0246-6 (focus: intellectual history).
    • Richard H. Weisberg : Vichy Law and the Holocaust in France . New York; New York Univ. Pr., 1998 (also in French translation, 1998)
    • Jürg Altwegg : The long shadows of Vichy. France, Germany and the return of the repressed . Hanser, Munich 1998, ISBN 3-446-19474-6 .
    • Wolfgang Geiger: L'image de la France dans l'Allemagne nazie 1933–1945 PUR, Rennes 1999, ISBN 2-86847-374-1 (review: ).
    • Rita Thalmann : Synchronization in France: 1940–1944 . from the French by Eva Groepler. European Publishing House , Hamburg 1999, ISBN 3-434-50062-6 . (OT: La mise au pas )
    • Regina M. Delacor: Assassinations and Repressions. Selected documents on the cyclical escalation of Nazi terror in occupied France in 1941/42. (= Instrumenta. Volume 4). Thorbecke, Stuttgart 2000, ISBN 3-7995-7268-6 .
    • Marc Olivier Baruch: The Vichy Regime: France 1940-1944 . Translated from the French. by Birgit Martens-Schöne. Edit for the German edition. by Stefan Martens. Reclams Universal Library , Stuttgart 2000, ISBN 3-15-017021-4 .
    • Christian Eggers: The camps of the Vichy regime. The internment of Jewish refugees in France 1940–1944 . Campus, Frankfurt 2000, ISBN 3-593-36628-2 .
    • Ahlrich Meyer : The German occupation in France 1940-1944. Fight against resistance and persecution of Jews . Scientific Book Society , Darmstadt 2000, ISBN 3-534-14966-1 . (French: L'occupation allemande en France , from the German: Pascale Hervieux. Edition Privat, Toulouse 2002, ISBN 2-7089-5693-0 )
    • Stefan Martens, Maurice Vaïsse (eds.): France and Germany at War (November 1942 - Autumn 1944). Occupation, collaboration, resistance. Files from the Franco-German colloquium. La France et l'Allemagne en Guerre (novembre 1942 - automne 1944). Occupation, collaboration, resistance . German Historical Institute Paris and Center d'Études d'Histoire de la Défense, Vincennes in collaboration with the Institute for Contemporary History, Munich and the Institut d'Histoire du Temps Présent (conference: Paris-Cachan, March 22-23, 1999) . Bouvier, Bonn 2000 online at .
    • Jacques Cantier: L'Algérie sous le régime de Vichy . Odile Jacob, Paris 2002, ISBN 2-7381-1057-6 .
    • Jean-Marc Dreyfus: A Narcissistic Wound That Never Heals? The collaboration in French memory. In: Fritz Bauer Institute (ed.): Boundless prejudices. 2002 yearbook on the history and impact of the Holocaust. Campus, Frankfurt 2002, ISBN 3-593-37019-0 , pp. 167-188.
    • Insa Meinen: Wehrmacht and prostitution in occupied France . Temmen, Bremen 2002, ISBN 3-86108-789-8 . ( Wehrmacht et prostitution sous l'Occupation (1940–1945). Payot, Paris 2006, ISBN 2-228-90074-5 )
    • Michael Curtis: Verdict on Vichy. Power and prejudice in the Vichy France regime. Arcade, New York 2003, ISBN 1-55970-689-9 .
    • Bernhard Brunner: The France Complex. The National Socialist Crimes in France and the Justice of the Federal Republic of Germany. (= Modern times. Volume 6). Wallstein, Göttingen 2004, ISBN 3-89244-693-8 ( review ; as TB 2007).
    • Claudia Moisel: France and the German war criminals. The criminal prosecution of the German war and Nazi crimes after 1945 . Wallstein, Göttingen 2004, ISBN 3-89244-749-7 ( review (English)).
    • Albrecht Betz, Stefan Martens: Les intellectuels et l'Occupation, 1940–1944: Collaborer, partir, résister. Autrement (Coll. "Mémoires"), Paris 2004, ISBN 2-7467-0540-0 (review in: Documents. Issue 2/2005, p. 97 by Dieter Tiemann).
    • Ahlrich Meyer: perpetrator under interrogation. The “Final Solution of the Jewish Question” in France 1940–1944. WBG, Darmstadt 2005, ISBN 3-534-17564-6 ( review by Rudolf Walther in Die Zeit . 2005–2050; on web links, conference December 2006).
    • Philippe Burrin: Vichy. The anti-republic. In: Pierre Nora (ed.): Places of memory of France . Translated from the French by Michael Bayer, Enrico Heinemann, Elsbeth Ranke, Ursel Schäfer, Hans Thill and Reinhard Tiffert, Beck, Munich 2005, ISBN 3-406-52207-6 .
    • Laurent Douzou: La Résistance française. Une histoire périlleuse . Ed. du Seuil, Paris 2005. (first overview of the consideration of the Vichy regime and the resistance throughout the post-war period).
    • Richard Vinen : The Unfree French: Life under Occupation . London: Penguin, 2006
    • Alain Chatriot, Dieter Gosewinkel (ed.): Figurations of the state in Germany and France. 1870–1945 = Les figures de l'État en Allemagne et en France (=  Paris historical studies. Volume 72). Oldenbourg, Munich 2006, ISBN 3-486-57671-2 (some essays in German, others in French) therein: The “steered economy” in France 1940–1944. Readable as a digital copy: here
    • Peter Lieb : Conventional war or Nazi ideological war? Warfare and the fight against partisans in France 1943/44. (= Sources and representations on contemporary history. Volume 69). Oldenbourg, Munich 2006, ISBN 3-486-57992-4 (also Diss. Univ. Munich, 2005).
    • Lorent Joly: Vichy in the solution finale. Histoire du Commissariat Général aux Questions Juives 1941–1944 . Grasset, Paris 2006, ISBN 2-9519438-5-7 . (Brief review in Mittelweg 36 , ed. Hamburger Edition , vol. 15, no. 6, Dec. 2006, p. 44, with a focus on “French literature on genocide and mass crime”).
    • Martin Jungius: The Managed Robbery. The “Aryanization” of the French economy 1940–1944 . Thorbecke, Ostfildern 2008, supplement of Francia (magazine) No. 67, published by the German Historical Institute Paris.
    • Henry Rousso : Vichy. France under German occupation 1940–1944. Beck, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-406-58454-1 (first Le régime de Vichy. PUF, Paris 2007).
    • Henry Rousso: France and the "dark years". The Vichy regime, past and present. Wallstein, Göttingen 2010, ISBN 978-3-8353-0756-8 .
    • Michael Mayer : States as perpetrators. Ministerial bureaucracy and “Jewish policy” in Nazi Germany and Vichy France. A comparison (=  studies on contemporary history. Volume 80). Preface by Horst Möller and Georges-Henri Soutou. Oldenbourg, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-486-58945-0 (also Diss. Munich 2007)
    • Annie Lacroix – Riz : De Munich à Vichy: L'assassinat de la Troisième République (1938–1940) . Paris, Armand Colin, 2008, 408 pp. ( ISBN 978-2-200-35111-3 )
    • Jan Wiegandt, Kolja Naumann: Vichy before the French Council of State. State liability law as a means of coming to terms with the past? In: European Fundamental Rights Journal. (EuGRZ) 2010, ISSN  0341-9800 , pp. 156–167
    • Caroline Moorehead : Village of Secrets. Defying the Nazis in Vichy France. Vintage, London 2015 ISBN 0-09-955464-X ; Chattoo & Windus, London 2014, ISBN 978-0-06-220247-5 (2015-ed. Available online; numerous references)

    Fiction, contemporary

    • Karl Kohut (Ed.): Literature of the Resistance and Collaboration in France (= Focus on Romance Studies. Volumes 18-20), ISSN  0170-6284
    • Helga Bories-Sawala et al. a .: La France occupée et la Résistance. Text output (= simple French, text output). Schöningh, Paderborn 2008, ISBN 978-3-14-046262-4 (French, partly German). (For lessons in secondary level 2. Also suitable for other first lessons, lots of illustrations & original documents, maps. Additional audio CD, ISBN 978-3-14-062412-1 . Also published: Teacher's manual; teaching model .)
    • Mirjam Schmid: Representability of the Shoah in novels and films. (= Cultural history series. Volume 12). Sonnenberg, Annweiler 2012, ISBN 978-3-933264-70-1 .
    • Didier Daeninckx : La mort n'oublie personne . Denoe, Paris 1989, ISBN 2-207-23539-4 . (only in French) As a film: Director Laurent Heynemann; Erstauff. May 5, 2009 La mort n'oublie personne in the Internet Movie Database (English)
    • Romain Gary : The Dance of Genghis Cohn . Piper Verlag , Munich 1969, again dtv, 1970 a. ö. (For abbreviation compared to the original, see reference article Gary).
      • Romain Gary: Les cerfs-volants ; German memory with wings . 1989. (The occupation through the eyes of a young person, the tightrope walk between collaboration and Resistance, similarities between East (Poland) and West Europe among the Germans.)
    • Leslie Kaplan : Fever . 2005 (German 2006, TB 2008).
    • Jonathan Littell: Les Bienveillantes . 2006. (German, Berlin 2008, ISBN 978-3-8270-0738-4 )
    • Louis Malle , Patrick Modiano: Lacombe Lucien . Screenplay (also as a film, DVD). Gallimard, Paris 1974, ISBN 2-07-028989-3 a . ö.
    • Patrick Modiano : Dora brother (and other works, see reference article). (What one could call his " trilogy of occupation"; includes Place d'étoile as well as La ronde de nuit and Les boulevards de ceintures , both of which can be read in German in the Paris trilogy .)
      • (To: La ronde de nuit :) Brigitta Coenen-Mennemeier: Analyzes and documents on the literature of the Resistance and collaboration in France . Diesterweg, Frankfurt 1988, ISBN 3-425-04875-9 (series: Ds neusprachliche Bibliothek. Materials and didactic analyzes for understanding French literature).
    • Brian Moore : Chase . Diogenes, Zurich 1997 (based on the story of the war criminal Paul Touvier ).
    • Irène Némirovsky : Suite française German by Eva Moldenhauer. for the first time Knaus, Munich 2005 ISBN 3-8135-0260-0 (same title as in the French orig.); TB: btb, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-442-73963-9 .
    • Georges Perec : W ou le souvenir d'enfance ; German: W or childhood memories , transl. Eugen Helmlé . Suhrkamp, Frankfurt 1982 ISBN 3-518-01780-2 (. More Translator Fri. W or the memory of childhood , Translator Thorgerd Schücker Volk und Welt, Berlin (GDR) 1978.. . ) New edition of the translation of Eugene Helmlé: diaphanes, Zurich 2016 ISBN 978-3-03734-225-1 .
    • Jean-Paul Sartre : Paris under the occupation. Articles, essays and reports 1944–1945 . Rowohlt TB, Reinbek 1997 ISBN 3-499-14593-6
    • Moriz Scheyer: Even homesickness was homeless: Report by a Jewish emigrant 1938-1945. Diary. Rowohlt, Reinbek 2017 (orig. 1945). Epilogue, explanations, list of names
    • Joseph Joffo : A sack full of marbles. Ullstein TB, 1996 ISBN 3-548-23727-4 (Un sac de billes. Librairie Generale Française ISBN 2-253-02949-1 )
    • Tatiana de Rosnay: Sarah's key. Novel . Translated from Angelika Kaps. Bloomsbury, Berlin 2007, frequent new editions, also as an audio book. Orig. Sarah's key interview with author (PDF; 360 kB).
    • Anne Wiazemsky : My Berlin child . Beck, Munich 2010 ISBN 978-3-406-60521-5 . French original: Mon enfant de Berlin. Novel. Gallimard, Paris 2009 ISBN 978-2-07-078409-7 . (a very young French Red Cross sister in the last months of the war).
    • Marie-Odile Beauvais : Le secret Gretl. Novel. Fayard, Paris 2009 ISBN 978-2-213-64447-9 (A 30-year-old of German-French origin in occupied Paris, between collaboration and denial; not in German).
    Only on loan
    • Didier Léautey: Hitler Germany, Collaboration and Resistance as the subject of the contemporary French novel . 1980. University thesis: Univ. Münster (Westphalia) Diss. Phil. A, 1981


    • The Darkness , a literary film adaptation with documentary material by Thomas Tielsch. The film describes the time shortly before the end of the Second World War, when the Vichy government was transplanted to Sigmaringen by the National Socialists. Based on the novel From One Castle to Another by Louis-Ferdinand Céline .
    • The following book describes 5 films on the topic: Pia Bowinkelmann: Schattenwelt. The extermination of the Jews depicted in the French documentary . Offizin, Hannover 2008, ISBN 978-3-930345-62-5 (filmmakers themed there: Resnais Nacht und Nebel ; Frédéric Rossif & Madeleine Chapsal: Le Temps du ghetto , 1961; Marcel Ophüls : The house next door - Chronicle of a French city in Wars (OT: Le chagrin et la pitié ) 1969; Claude Lanzmann, Shoah and Claude Chabrol : L'œil de Vichy , 1993)
    • L'occupation intimate. French documentary by Isabelle Clarke and Daniel Costelle about everyday life under the German occupation, 2011.

    Web links

    Commons : Vichy Regime  - collection of images, videos and audio files

    References and comments

    1. Time zone: Until the German occupation, Universal Time +0 was valid in France . The Germans directly introduced German summer time (UT + 2) in the occupied territories. In order to avoid problems with rail traffic, the Vichy authorities suspended the changeover to winter time in October 1940, thus maintaining French summer time, which corresponded to German standard time (UT + 1). The adjustment to the German time failed, however, because the German Empire also let summer time continue. In May 1941, Vichy then switched to German summer time (double French summer time, UT + 2). See Yvonne Poulle: La France à l'heure allemande , Bibliothèque de l'École des chartes, vol. 157, Librairie Droz, 1999, pp. 493-502.
    2. ↑ Roll- call voting results in the minutes on the website of the French National Assembly (PDF; 3.1 MB).
    3. ^ Loi constitutionnelle du 10 juillet 1940 ( Digithèque MJP ).
    4. See Acte constitutionnel n ° 1 and Acte constitutionnel n ° 2 du 11 juillet 1940 ( Digithèque MJP ).
    5. Cf. Acte constitutionnel n ° 4 du 12 juillet 1940 ( Digithèque MJP ).
    6. See Eberhard Jäckel : France in Hitler's Europe: the German French policy in World War II , Stuttgart 1966, p. 260 f.
    7. ^ Arnd Krüger : Strength through joy. The culture of consent under fascism, Nazism and Francoism. In: James Riordan , Arnd Krüger (Ed.): The International Politics of Sport in the 20th Century . Routledge, New York 1999, pp. 67-89.
    8. Jean-Louis Gay-Lescot: Le mouvement sportif et l'édication physique scolaire en régime autoritaire: L'Etat Français de Vichy (1940-1944). Sport Histoire 2: 23-54 (1988).
    9. ^ Thierry Therret: France. James Riordan & Arnd Krüger (Eds.): European Cultures in Sport: Examining the Nations and Regions. Intellect, Bristol 2003, ISBN 1-84150-014-3 , pp. 103-123.
    10. Loi concernant l'accès aux emplois dans les administrations publiques of July 17, 1940, in: Journal officiel de la République Française (JO) of July 18, 1940, p. 4537; Loi concernant l'exercice de la médicine of August 16, 1940, in: JO of August 19, 1940, pp. 4735f .; Loi réglementant l'accès au barreau of September 10, 1940, in: JO of September 11, 1940, p. 4958 and Loi portant abrogation du décret-loi du 21 avril 1939 (loi Marchandeau) of August 27, 1940, in: JO of August 30, 940, p. 4844. See: Michael Mayer : States as perpetrators. Ministerial bureaucracy and “Jewish policy” in Nazi Germany and Vichy France. A comparison. With a foreword by Horst Möller and Georges-Henri Soutou. In: Studies on Contemporary History. 80, Oldenbourg, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-486-58945-0 (also Diss. Munich 2007), pp. 28-30.
    11. See Art. 1 of the Loi sur les ressortissants étrangers de race juive, in: JO of October 18, 1940, p. 5324. Cf. Mayer: States as perpetrators. P. 30 f.
    12. Loi portant statut des juifs of October 3, 1940, in: JO of October 18, 1940, p. 5323.
    13. ^ Mayer: States as perpetrators. Pp. 47-68.
    14. ^ Mayer: States as perpetrators. Pp. 122-166.
    15. Disclosed: the zealous way Marshal Pétain enforced Nazi anti-Semitic laws . In: The Guardian . October 3, 2010 (last accessed October 3, 2010).
    16. Winston Churchill: The Second World War (Bern 1954).
    17. ^ François Marcot, Bruno Leroux: Dictionnaire Historique de la Resistance . Robert Laffont, Paris 2006, ISBN 2-221-09997-4 , p. 600, keyword “Montoire”.
    18. ^ Pétain, Philippe: Address on the “collaboration” (October 30, 1940) Clio online. European History Topic Portal (last checked on October 16, 2011).
    19. ^ Marc Ferro: Questions sur la Deuxième Guerre mondiale . Editions Complexe, Brussels 2007, ISBN 978-2-8048-0126-7 ; Henry Rousso : Vichy. France under French occupation 1940–1944 . CH Beck, Munich 2009, p. 48.
    20. Jean-Pierre Azéma, Olivier Wieviorka: Vichy 1940–1944 . Perrin, Paris 2009, ISBN 978-2-262-02229-7 , “Le temps des profiteurs”, pp. 71 and 78.
    21. ^ Robert O. Paxton : La collaboration d'État. In: J.-P. Azéma, F. Bédarida (ed.): La France des années noires, tome 1: De la défaite à Vichy . Le Seuil, Paris 2001, ISBN 2-02-018306-4 . For economic collaboration p. 357.
    22. ^ Spiegel Special: Hitler's War. Six years that shook the world. No. 2/2005, pp. 34-36. ISSN  1612-6017
    23. ^ Eberhard Jäckel : La France dans l'Europe de Hitler . Éditions Fayard, Paris 1968, p. 320 (German original edition E. Jäckel: France in Hitler's Europe - German policy on France in World War II . Deutsche Verlag-Anstalt, Stuttgart 1966).
    24. ^ Henry Rousso: Vichy. France under German occupation 1940–1944 , CH Beck, Munich 2009, p. 63.
    25. ^ Bertram M. Gordon: Collaborationism in France During the Second World War. Cornell University Press, 1980, ISBN 0-8014-1263-3 , pp. 43-66.
    26. ^ André Kaspi, Ralph Schor: La Deuxième guerre mondiale: chronologie commentée. Éditions Complexe, 1995, ISBN 2-87027-591-9 , p. 195.
    27. ^ Henry Rousso: Vichy. France under German occupation 1940–1944 , CH Beck, Munich 2009, p. 49.
    28. ^ Georges-Henri Soutou: Vichy, l'URSS et l'Allemagne de 1940 à 1941. In: Ilja Mieck, Pierre Guillen (eds.): Germany - France - Russia / La France et l'Allemagne face à la Russie: Encounters and confrontations . Oldenbourg Wissenschaftsverlag, Munich 2000, ISBN 3-486-56419-6 , p. 303.
    29. Denis Peschanski, Pierre Azéma: Vichy, état policier. In: La France des années noires. Volume 2. Éditions du Seuil, Paris pp. 358–359.
    30. ^ Eberhard Jäckel : La France dans l'Europe de Hitler. Pp. 280-284.
    31. ^ Raul Hilberg: La Destruction des Juifs d'Europe . Volume 2. Editions Gallimard, Paris 2006, ISBN 2-07-030984-3 , p. 1177.
    32. ^ Asher Cohen: Persécutions et sauvetages. Juifs et Français sous l'Occupation et sous Vichy . Éditions du Cerf, Paris 1993, ISBN 2-204-04491-1 , p. 257.
    33. Marc Olivier Baruch: The Vichy Regime. France 1940–1944 . Reclam, Ditzingen 1999, ISBN 3-15-017021-4 , pp. 103-107. Jean-Marc Berlière: Les Policiers français sous l'occupation . Perrin, Paris 2001, pp. 32-35.
    34. Jean-Marc Berlière, Laurent Chabrun: Les Policiers français sous l'occupation. D'après les archives inédites de l'épuration . Editions Perrin, Paris 2001, ISBN 2-262-01626-7 , pp. 224-225.
    35. Olivier Forcade: Services spéciaux militaires. In: Dictionnaire historique de la Résistance. Editions Robert Laffont, 2006, pp. 211-213.
    36. On the less emphatic police search pressure in the unoccupied zone against the non-communist Resistance before 1942, see in particular: JM Berlière: Les Policiers français sous l'occupation. Éditions Perrin, Paris 2001, p. 35; D.Veillon / O.Wieviorka: La Résistance. In: La France des années noires. Volume 2, p. 89; D. Peschanski: Répression de la Resistance par Vichy. In: Dictionnaire historique de la Résistance. Editions Robert Laffont, 2006, p. 789. Peschanski points out that the repression of the police was directed against communists, both before and after they joined the Resistance. All authors emphasize that before 1942 a large part of the non-communist Resistance was relatively benevolent towards Marshal Pétain, while some of the services actually charged with fighting the Resistance, such as the Bureau des Menées Antinationales (BMA). pursued their task only to a very limited extent. Numerous non-Communist Resistance leaders were arrested, but were released: Chevance-Bertin, Bertie Albrecht , François de Menthon , Marie-Madeleine Fourcade , Bertrande d'Astier de la Vigerie (niece of Emmanuel d'Astier de la Vigerie ), Serge Ravanel .
    37. ^ Robert Aron: Histoire de Vichy . Éditions Fayard, Paris 1954, pp. 536-537.
    38. ^ Eberhard Jäckel: La France dans l'Europe de Hitler. P. 387.
    39. ^ Ahlrich Meyer: Répression de la Résistance par les Allemands. In: Dictionnaire historique de la Résistance. Editions Robert Laffont, Paris 2006, pp. 785–788.
    40. ^ Denis Peschanski: Répression de la Resistance par Vichy. In: Dictionnaire historique de la Résistance. Editions Robert Laffont, Paris 2006, pp. 789–790.
    41. ^ Asher Cohen: Persécutions et sauvetages juifs et français sous l occupation et sous vichy . Éditions du Cerf, Paris 1993, ISBN 2-204-04491-1 .
    42. Ulrich Herbert : Best. Biographical studies on radicalism, worldview and reason. 1903-1989. 3rd edition, Dietz, Bonn 1996, pp. 232, 254.
    43. ^ Bernhard Brunner: The France Complex: The National Socialist Crimes in France and the Justice in the Federal Republic of Germany . Frankfurt 2008, p. 44.
    44. ^ Owner of a bookstore called Rive Gauche, on which an attack was carried out, from September 1940 also head of the German institute in Paris, after the war senior director of studies in Heilbronn and at times head of the Grabert publishing house ; see. Bernhard Brunner: The France Complex: The National Socialist Crimes in France and the Justice in the Federal Republic of Germany . Frankfurt am Main 2008, p. 121.
    45. ^ A b Bernhard Brunner: The France Complex: The National Socialist Crimes in France and the Justice in the Federal Republic of Germany . Frankfurt 2008, p. 42 f.
    46. Thierry Wolton: Red-Brown. The pact against democracy from 1939 until today . Hamburg 2000, p. 36.
    47. Stéphane Courtois: Un été 1940. Les négociations entre le PCF et l'occupant allemand à la lumière des archives de l'Internationale communiste. In: Communisme. No. 32, 33, 34, 4th quarter 1992, 1st and 2nd quarters 1993, pp. 85-127.
    48. ^ Raymond Cartier: The Second World War, Volume 1; Lingen Verlag (1967) p. 201.
    49. ^ Acte constitutionnel n ° 5 du 30 juillet 1940 .
    50. See Sophie Wenkel: A dark chapter in French history. 70 years after the "raid of the winter velodrome" . Deutschlandfunk, July 16, 2012.
    51. Daily news report on French television about Chirac's speech, July 16, 1995 (video, 2:03 min.)
    52. General report (PDF, 2 MB, 198 pages)
    53. Loi n ° 2000-321 du 12 avril 2000 relative aux droits des citoyens dans leurs relations avec les administrations
    54. Stefan Martens (2005): Plea for a History of the Occupation ( Memento from November 16, 2006 in the Internet Archive )
    55. The archival law of January 3, 1979, which is difficult to apply , was integrated into the Code du patrimoine in 2004 .
    56. only about France, namely to Night and Fog as a film and to André Schwarz-Bart: The Last of the Righteous. Novel.