Gort, Field Marshal John, 1886-1946

Highly decorated in World War I, Lord Gort served the military between the wars as Director of Military Training India (1932) and Commandant of the Staff College at Camberley (1936-37). In 1937 HORE-BELISHA, Minister of War, promoted Gort to be Chief of Imperial General Staff (CIGS). In 1939 he became Commander in Chief of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) and went to France. Although unimaginative and overly concerned with trivial matters of organization, Gort’s guidance of the BEF in the Battle of France showed a great deal of foresight. In spite of instructions to remain in position, Gort chose the right moment to withdraw allowing the Army to be evacuated from Dunkirk with no time to spare. Gort was removed from the field after Dunkirk and became first, Governor of Gibraltar and then, Governor General and Commander in Chief in Malta (1942). He conducted the defense of Malta with vigor and resolution. He finished the war as High Commissioner in Palestine.

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