Vichy France

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Transcript Vichy France

(or how to run an occupied country in war-time)
 After taking Poland, Hitler set his sights on France
 France would provide plenty of lebensraum, or living
space, for the German people.
 Hitler saw the United States as an example (similar to
manifest destiny)
Maginot Line
The Maginot Line was a
defensive for France
against an invasion of
The Maginot Line was
established after World
War I.
The line showed to be
little use in 1940 when
Germany invaded France
for the third time.
“Blitzkrieg: German soldiers being parachuted into Holland - May 10, 1940”
Fall of France
 The Germans invaded France in May 1940.
 Retreating Allied forces made it to Dunkirk and found
themselves trapped between the advancing Nazis and the
English Channel.
 British sent every boat they could get across the English
Channel to pick up troops off the beaches of Dunkirk.
 The event at Dunkirk is called a miracle because the
retreating allies had lost hope and then the British
pulled through for them and rescued 338,000 men.
 On June 22, 1940 France signs an armistice with Germany in
occupied France.
 An armistice is a cease fire or a truce.
 The Franco-German Armistice divided France into two zones.
One zone was under German military occupation and the
other was under French control.
 In 1942 Germans occupied all of France
 Puppet state – a state that governs itself in day-to-day
matters but is in reality under the control of a much
larger state.
 Vichy maintained full sovereignty only in unoccupied
 Wermacht-occupied zone in the north
 Why would
occupy the
north and not
the south?
 Occupation would be temporary until war’s end
(which seemed likely at the time)
 Public supported pro-Nazi government early on to
maintain some sovereignty.
 Premier Marshal Petain worked out deal with Nazi’s to
not divide France between Axis powers.
 Vichy worked closely with German government
 Cooperated with many German racial policies,
including the rounding up of undesirables.
 Germany commanded most French forces in the
country to prevent Allied invasion from North Africa
 Government was structured in an authoritarian form,
most blamed democracy on France’s fall
Vichy France
Propaganda picture of Marshal Petain meeting with Hitler.
 US gave full diplomatic recognition to Vichy.
 US disliked Charles De Gaulle (commander fo French
troops, exiled to UK)
 USSR maintained diplomatic relations with Vichy
 UK maintained recognition of Vichy until it became
clear they would not fight the Germans.
 Created by De Gaulle to
combat Vichy and
 Sparked fear of civil war
in France
 Overseas colonies went
under control of Free
French Forces
 Invasion of Normandy
led to liberation of Paris
on 8/25/1945
 Collaborators with
Germany were ridiculed,
prosecuted and and/or
executed after war
 War crimes were tried for
decades after
What were 3 ways that Hitler rose to power in Germany?
How did Hitler circumvent the Treaty of Versaille’s restrictions on
Why did Hitler wish to invade the states surrounding Germany?
What was the immediate cause of World War II?
Describe the German concept of the “blitzkrieg”.
What was the miracle at Dunkirk? Why was this event important?
What was the significance of June 22, 1940?
Why did Germany leave the north of France occupied?
What was the relationship between the Vichy government and the
United States like? Why would the United States want to recognize the
Vichy government in 1940?
What did liberation mean for those who had worked with the Nazi