De Gaulle (De Git)

Discussion in 'History' started by Gombear, Oct 28, 2009.

Welcome to the Navy Net aka Rum Ration

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial RN website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    An interesting read. I quote the following:

    He decided to join a number of French officers who went along to greet the general, but was surprised by the conversation that followed.

    General de Gaulle: "Jean-Pierre, that's a French name."

    Mr Lake: "My nom de guerre, mon general."

    Gen de Gaulle: "What are you doing here?"

    Mr Lake: "I belong to the Inter-Allied Mission for Dordogne, and I am at the moment with Dordogne troops at Marennes, mon general."

    Gen de Gaulle: "But what are you doing here?"

    Mr Lake: "I am training certain troops for special operations."

    Gen de Gaulle: "Our troops don't need training. You have no business here."

    Mr Lake: "I obey the orders of my superiors."

    Gen de Gaulle: "You have no business here, I say. You have no right to exercise a command."

    Mr Lake: "Mon general, I exercise no command."

    Gen de Gaulle: "We don't need you here. It only remains for you to leave. You too must go home. Return, return quickly. Au revoir."

    Hmmmm. Maybe the big nosed one felt nothing but jealousy because he sat in London making broadcasts while better men & women did the dirty work for him. Utter tool.
  2. I think he hated the fact the he needed the Allies to liberate his country, and I believe (although not all historians think this) this was the reason it took us three attempts to get into Europe, because de Gaulle blocked our entry.

    I have a book on the maquis and a similar story about his hatred of OSS agents is recounted in that. I will find the details and post later as am at work now.
  3. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    De Gaulle was a knob. I don't even think he was the first choice "leader" of the free french that the allies had in mind, one of history's fcuk ups that they ended up with him. The name and reason why the other general that had preference didn't get the job escapes me.

    De Gaulle captures the regret in me that we gave up a millennium of cross channel rape and pillage for a century of help and sacrifice.
  4. Mind you the only really successful bit of that millenium was the resting of Canada from the Frogs and the little dust iup with Boney. Most of the rest of the time they were ahead. After all at one time the English (Normans/Angevins) owned more of Frogland than the Frogs, though by the time of the Armada we had managed to lose all of it, not that good a record really.
  5. Well said. Still, at least we may get President Bliar as a consolation prize. :roll:
  6. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    See, why is it that occifers always think grand? :lol:

    Us Janners and the good folk of Kernow had it pretty hunky dory when it came to cross channel operations thank you. :p
  7. You have to remeber that for 700 years of your millenium they were my lots mates.
  8. Seaweed

    Seaweed War Hero Book Reviewer

    There were no previous 'attempts' at D-Day scotched by deG - earlier dates were set but it always became apparent that we had not the resources for the job. What we had to deploy to achieve success - and by what a thin margin - I think speaks for that. However deG pretty well talked himself into his role when he got to England (as a brigadier) in 1940 as there were no other contenders - later he saw off efforts to put other Fr generals ahead of him, for instance in N Africa. As to D-Day, he withdrew cooperation (and Fr liaison officers) in a huff because nobody would tell him what was going on. That was because of the shocking security breaches perpetrated by the Free French in the run up to Dakar. I have read that at the eventual Victory parade in Paris he sent an aide down to rip the Union flag off a British jeep. Churchill is said to have remarked that of all the crosses he had to bear, the heaviest was the Cross of Lorraine (Free Fr symbol). Later deG stopped us joining the EEC & we only got in, thoroughly stiffed by the Frogs, after Heath gave away our fisheries and our agriculture.
  9. Hi Blobber,

    I believe you are thinking of Henri Giraud: Another distinguished, but equally Anglophobic, French General.

    General Giraud was considered to be the only man who could swing the French Forces in North Africa over to the Allied cause. Eventually he did; but his particular hatred of the Brits was such that he demanded a US S/M Taxi service out of Vichy France. In Oct 1942 none of Elmer’s boats were available so Giraud was ‘collected’ in HM S/m SERAPH, re-commissioned/rigged out as “USS†SERAPH in the clandestine Operation Kingpin. One version is at:

    Later (in January 1943 at the Churchil/Roosevelt/De Gaulle Casablanca Conference and only after ‘after much discussion’) Giraud and De Gaulle were nominated as future ‘Co-presidents of the French Committee of National Liberation (NCNL)’.

    De Gaulle and Giraud had ‘bad history’ between them from way back. As De Gaulle had greater political clout he was able to gradually fifteen-two Giraud along the way and so Giraud eventually dropped off the plot.

    On reflection, it is particularly rather sad that both of these brave Generals had such mega anti-Brit shoulder-chips, probably re-inforced by our inability to fulfil our promises to evacuate more of their army from Dunkirk.

    Regarding Post-War EU, Giraud would have probably taken the same line as De-Git….

    Suchlike huffy Anglophobia at the top was notably absent at the lower levels among the North French common sailor men. Those brave Free French forces that fought on, and with, the Royal Navy’s Coastal Forces, Submarines, and Small Vessels did so with amity and distinction.
  10. Lofty must have really hated us; otherwise he would have had our admission blocked for ever!
  11. Recall visiting Brest onboard HMS PLYMOUTH as part of the Twinning celebrations. The French mayor, (A Communist) was over one hour adrift to meet the Lord Mayor of Plymouth for the cocktail party. Diplomatically he didn't want to appear to snub the Lord Mayor of Plymouth, but couldn't be seen to be visiting a RN war canoe.
    Amongst those invited to the cocktail party were a few of the Devonport/Plymouth natives. During a conversation with the French mayor, one of our stokers was in discussion with the french mayor.
    The mayor said that the English and French had always been friends.
    To which the stoker replied "Well theres the Battles of Cressy, Agincourt,Trafalgar, General Wolfe at Quebec...on and off wev've been fighting each other for over two thousand years...Can't be a coincidence!"
    Believe the jimmy had to extradite the mayor as stokes was getting wound up. :wink:
  12. Had a similar experience in Lorient on a visit.

    The locals didnt take to jolly jack too well as apparently the town had been bombed heavily during the war due to the U boat pens.
    Asked if we had been here before I replied no,but my grandad did in a Wellington bomber.
    Time for a swift exit,no sense of humour some people. :lol:
  13. Seaweed

    Seaweed War Hero Book Reviewer

    Highburton at Brest 1961, demoing to Fr. Fr 4-ring captain on board to witness, no English. Discussions on bridge entirely in Fr (fortunately my CO was fluent). Lunch: L/Stwd & L/Ck pulled out all the stops and then some. pm Fr Captain spoke English. Told us he lived in one of only two pre-war houses in Brest.

    Meanwhile Fr minesweeper on other side of jetty as host ship. 5 officers. deG hand in coat like Boney in wardroom photo. 4 officers spoke English. 5th, who didn't, detailed as liaison.

    Expect swill bin somewhere. Ask Frog liaison officer (in broken FR) where put spud peelings etc. QN NOT UNDERSTOOD. Retire baffled, watch native practice. Answer of course was 'in the harbour'.

    Had been there as cadet, in Boxer, my 6th week in RN. Fr cadets massive wine ration at lunch. Under 18 Seaweed much enjoy, others did too. Challenged dinghy race. Course over shingle bank we weren't told about, scrape, scrape, slowed down somewhat. Fr dinghy rotten so cleats etc pulled out of woodwork as we went along leaving gear flapping. Fr won races.

    Food OK though.

    Oh - go back a bit. One of my seniors, v fluent Fr, had been liaison to Fr ship in Portsmouth during war. Took WR on run ashore. Came back to find cabin & particularly bunk somewhat mussed up. Challenged OOD: 'But she was a LADY and yours was the only cabin with sheets.'

    Apologies if any dits recognised as recycled.
  14. Well at least the Queen is still sovereign of Brittany and calvados country! :razz: ...even though the French pretend otherwise! :twisted:
  15. Up untill May 1940 the Frogs were actively working with us doing escort work minesweeping minelaying etc.
    However when the French capitulated and Vichy France formed the French forces in the UK were given the choice of remaining in the UK or getting sent home--and we decided to take over the French vessels in UK ports.
    Remnants of the French Army in the Uk were also formed into a fighting force with de Gaulle i/c
    The biggest possible thing done to alienate the frogs was the destruction of the French fleets in N Africa . Lots of life lost.
    The abortive attack on Dakar and the invasion of Madagascar wasn't very well recieved either
    Invasion of N,Africa in 1942 to shift Rommel was opposed by Vichy french forces and they were severely slapped .
    The Germans then invaded Vichy and the French Fleet scuttled !!

    Biggest upset to De Gaulle was when he tried to be the ''liberator of Paris '
    after D-day and the advance through France .The Americans stalled him .
    However he did become the French national hero when everyone in France
    decided they were all members of the resistance !! :lol: :lol:

  16. If De Gaulle was such a hero and the liberator of France, why wasn't he on the beach on D-Day with my Old Man and the rest of the Hampshires ? He'd fight until the last drop of English blood, the Twatt.
  17. Not naval but at least nautical. Following on from Seaweeds comments for a while I was involved in peddling ships steering gear and stabilisers around Europe and did several trips to France with my boss. He was a marine engineer (his father had been involved with K13 so some naval links) and had done his graduate appreticeship in a French shipyard just after the war. As a result he could swear in French with the best of them (I actually saw a taxi driver cringe after a verbal tougue lashing). His best moments though were when he would correct frogs for using incorrect words often resulting in substantial arguments which he always won when the dictionary was produced.

Share This Page