Dill as CIGS Negotiating with France

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Carl Schwamberger
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Dill as CIGS Negotiating with France

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 19 May 2018 00:49

I thought I'd asked this one earlier, but can't find a bookmark, thread, or anything in my notes.

Am recalling a remark somewhere that Dill had been sponsoring 'talks' with French military leaders circa 1941. The specific topic was assisting the Vichy French army with arms and ammunition were the Germans to attempt occupation of southern France. The claim was this was done without Churchills knowledge.

Has anyone heard of anything like this ? Any known sources? Is it a distortion of some other secret Brit/French discussion?

Thanks for any clues.

Aber
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Re: Dill as CIGS Negotiating with France

Post by Aber » 19 May 2018 15:15

This?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-17390290
But neither man had anything to say about a secret meeting in London in December 1941 between a senior Vichy military officer and a member of the British General Staff. That, it seems, is because nobody told them.

But documents dated six months later show that the meeting resulted in a decision that was both extremely significant and highly controversial.

A proposal discussed at the meeting was approved in May 1942 by General Alan Brooke, Chief of the Imperial General Staff. Under the top secret plan Britain was to arm Vichy troops and link up with them in an Allied landing at Bordeaux and La Rochelle. At the time Britain had no official military links with Vichy and its forces were fighting Petain's troops in Madagascar

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Dill as CIGS Negotiating with France

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 19 May 2018 20:58

Thanks. Thats what I was looking for. The original item I read was unattributed, with little context. More of a claim that useful information. Thishas some flesh and clues to trace on. Appreciate the reference.

A couple points. The BBC article refers to Alan-Brooke as the CIGS, which I guess is technically correct as he took over in December 1941. But it seems a bit off that one of the first things on his agenda would be to organize this secret meeting. Since the other item I read referred to Dill specifically as the CIGS & implied 1941 It leads to speculation of one or the other article being wrong, or that this was a ongoing thing initially organized by Dill.

Seperately the author of the BBC item makes something of that Churchill & DeGaulle were not informed of this meeting. Was the meeting itself important enough they should have? There is not much, actually nothing, about the results of the meeting. We don't really know it the only result was a page of minutes, or perhaps actual agreements and subsequent staff work on actually supplying something.

At any rate there is some evidence this meeting occurred.

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