Flandin, Etienne, 1889-1958

Flandin was a French politician who was Prime Minister of France in 1934-35 and during the years leading up to the war had favored a policy of appeasement. His service in the Vichy Regime was spectacularly short—he owed his rise to LAVAL’s disgrace and to his speeches about French revival. In November 1940 he became Foreign Minister and one of his first steps was to upset the German Ambassador to France by some ‘throwaway’ remarks. Flandin nearly succeeded Laval as Vice-Premier but PETAIN decided to promote Admiral DARLAN; Flandin left the government in February 1941. He had opposed helping Germany militarily and had become an embarrassment to Petain. After the liberation he was treated roughly by DE GAULLE who hated all those who served in the Vichy administration. Flandin was tried by the French High Court but was acquitted of the crime of collaboration.

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