City State Armed Forces in WW2?

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tom2000d
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City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by tom2000d » 11 Aug 2018 21:32

Hi all, I am currently trying to find out the manpower details of the armed forces, Gendarme, Police, men serving for other countries etc. of the city states in the second world war.
Countries and info on them as of yet:

-Principality of Andorra
-Principality of Liechtenstein- I only know that 75 Liechtensteiners were in the Waffen SS
-Principality of Monaco
-Republic of San Marino- 300 Personnel?
-Free City of Danzig- 210-240 Personnel Polish Army (Polish Munitions Depot Danzig) (1939)
-Vatican City- ? Personnel Swiss Guard, 500 Personnel (1939) & 2,000 Personnel (1944) Palatine Guard

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Loïc
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by Loïc » 11 Aug 2018 22:20

hello

more micro-states than city-states, some reaching 157 or 468 km²

the Vatican had kept 4 corps after 1870, with the Swiss and Palatine Guards there were also the Gendarmerie and a Noble Guard

San Marino had a military force of 989 men, all the men should be mobilised in the milice

Monaco had a company of Carabiniers (actually mostly French) and police,
15 foreign volunteers are listed as from Monaco in the French Army in 1939-1940

Andorre never had any Army, with the Spanish Civil War 150 French Gendarmes were in garrison until 1940
at least one foreign volunteer fom Andorre in the French Army in 1939, two Andorran FFI Maquisards killed in 1944

Liechtenstein disbanded its own Army in 1868 (the last Liechtenstein soldier still in life Andrea Kleber, 95 years old, appears in various European newspapers in 1937)

Regards
Loïc

tom2000d
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by tom2000d » 11 Aug 2018 23:57

Excellent, do you possibly know what the strength of the Swiss Guard, Noble Guard or Gendarme was?
Kind regards and many thanks,
Tom.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 12 Aug 2018 08:10

Hi Loic,

What is your source for the quite precise figure of 989 men for San Marino? It had several small ceremonial militia units but I doubt their number reached that high. Is this figure perhaps for the manpower eligible for service?

I think the Monaco Caribiniers had to be either Monegasque or French by law. As Monegasques were only about 10% of the population, most were therefore necessarily French. Hundreds of French residents were mobilised for the French Army in 1939-40 and one imagines that the same was true over 1940-43 of resident Italians, who were slightly more numerous than the local French.

Andorra only had a traditional militia (Somotent?) equipped with a variety of obsolete firearms held privately and the French gendarmes had confiscated most of these during political infighting in the mid 1930s. (If or when they got them back later is unclear).

Liechtenstein was in a customs union with Switzerland and had Swiss border guards on its main border crossings with Austria. During the war it raised a volunteer, part-time, frontier guard largely to cover the rest of the Austrian border. From memory, I read somewhere that the last survivor of Liechtenstein's army (presumably your Andrea Kleber) died in 1939.

Cheers,

Sid.

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Loïc
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San Marino

Post by Loïc » 12 Aug 2018 13:28

hello

Monaco is the smallest micro-state after the Vatican in km² but the biggest by inhabitants of the 5 states with around 25 000 but it would be difficult for the Principalty to recruit a whole 100men company with only 1500 true Monesgasques after having lost 80% of the inhabitants and 90% of its territory in 1848

San Marino's 989 soldiers was the official strenght of the Milice, 9 companies, 39 officers 950 men given in 1914 and again in 1940 as first trained echelon, but all the others citizens between 16 to 55 years old were eligibles for a second echelon

from Time Magazine until Australia
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=150381&p=1732265&hi ... 2#p1732265

from a French newspaper of the same year, october 1940
StMarin.jpg
read somewhere others figures,
-60 peacetime militiamen
-24 or 48 men of the Noble Guard or Council Guard
-Political Corps of Gendarmerie
-Military Band 50 musicians

350 volunteers

after declaring war to the Allies in 1940, declaring its neutrality when the Allies approached the last Serenissima Republic
French newspaper 7th september 1944
stmarin.PNG

for the Vatican I don't have figures for wartime, in the Interwars Noble Guard numbered 70 men, Swiss 90 to 123 and Palatine 300, the Gendarmerie serving also as policemen in civilian

Andorra had in the past some Volunteers of the Civic Guard but its outdated "military" organisation was so antediluvian that many military sources didn't even retain a chapter for Andorra

Regards
Loïc
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Sid Guttridge
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 13 Aug 2018 05:37

Hi Loic,

Thanks.

In fact, San Marino never declared war on the the UK in WWII. This was a mistaken story published in the British press and presumably synicated elsewhere. It was neutral throughout the war. (Indeed, contrary to the other newpaper report, I think it was neutral in WWI as well. I think it was Andorra that declared war in WWI, because one of its joint heads of state was the French President).

In all of Italy's wars since 1848, numbers of Sammarinese had volunteered for the Italian armed forces. However, in WWII there seems to have been only one volunteer, and he was a Fascist doctor.

And the idea that San Marino's armed forces were "parfaitement entrainés" is ludicrous. They were purely ceremonial, apart from a platoon-worth of carabinieri and a small militia border guard formed in mid-1944 to delineate the borders as the front passed by.

Cheers,

Sid

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Ironmachine
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by Ironmachine » 13 Aug 2018 08:10

Sid Guttridge wrote:I think it was Andorra that declared war in WWI
Yes, Andorra declared war on Germany in 1914. And at the beginning of World War II, Andorra was still technically at war with Germany, because Andorra was forgotten at the signature of the Treaty of Versailles. It would appear that a treaty was signed in 1939, but the matter was not totally concluded until 1958 IIRC.

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Loïc
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Re: Monaco

Post by Loïc » 17 Aug 2018 22:44

hello

Monaco had kept 215 soldiers in 2 companies Carabiniers and Sapeurs-Pompiers (Firemen) c.1932
but for economic reasons reduced to only 80 carabiniers and 50 firemen in 1934
then 76 to 87 in 1935
in 1937 still existed 68 carabiniers (95% French) and 30 firemen, Monaco's Army reaching 98 soldiers

Regards
Loïc Lilian

casimiro
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Re: City State Armed Forces in WW2?

Post by casimiro » 19 Oct 2018 02:33

Sorry for joining this conversation so late, I can provide some information concerning the strength of the Vatican's armed forces.

Swiss Guard. Although authorized at a strength of 120 men, the number of Swiss Guards declined during the war as the unit had trouble replacing halberdiers who returned to Switzerland after their two year enlistment. At the onset of the war, the Swiss government actually forbade the unit from recruiting new members in Switzerland, although this prohibition had been lifted by 1941. When German forces occupied Rome in September 1943, the Swiss Guard numbered only 62 men, although in October of that year a Guard officer traveled to Switzerland and returned with thirteen new recruits.

Gendarmeria, The Vatican Gendarmeria was the police force of Vatican City. At the outbreak of the war it had an authorized strength of 156 men, but during the war the size of the unit never reached that number and the actual strength probably hovered around 100.

Noble Guard. When the Germans marched into Rome the Noble Guard mustered only 32 men, although a handful of recruits--some of them officers from the Granatieri di Sardegna which had fought the Germans at the gates of Rome--joined after the occupation.

Palatine Guard. When the war broke out the Palatine Guard had an authorized strength of 500 but actual strength fell below that number. When the Germans entered Rome the Palatines mustered around 300 men. After the arrival of the Germans, the Palatines launched a major recruitment effort and by the beginning of 1944 the unit had added around 1500 men to its strength.

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