How did France deal with collaborators after WW2?

in #question2 years ago (edited)

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The collaborators were dealt with as per needed. Like some were tried and executed or imprisoned, some were gunned down as they took extreme measures to escape or fight back and some were unknowingly let go and many from them even became political figures.

 France was among the firsts who declared war on Germany. in between  September 3, 1939 and may 10, 1940 France and Germany only faced a few handful incidents. and after may 10, only in one and a half month they took over France. Until August 25, 1944 the Nazis controlled more than half of the country. And in the next six days France were fully purged of Nazi occupation. 

 As France was geographically near Germany, the invasion by the Nazi forces was an event that was imminent any way. And in the total timeline there were many collaborators and war criminals who sought to gain and support there personal vendettas.

The guiltiest portion was Pierre Laval and Marshal Philippe Petain's Vichy government. They were accused of countless crimes. This was a sham government that were put in place by the third Reich strategically. At the time Vichy Government was in power they were responsible for deporting more than 76000 Jews to extermination camps. The extermination camps were even built by the Vichy government as it was convenient to kill people and dump them nearby. They even sent homosexuals and political opponents to those camps. And only the fraction of total Jews sent survived. This was the nightmarish example of heinous war crimes ever to be witnessed by the world.

After the war was over the punishment of collaborators, as historians describe, the pursuit was completed in three waves.

The first wave was induced in chaos which included convictions made, public executions and and acts directed to humiliate the assumed suspects.

Second phase was the initiation of legal trials. Charles DE Gaul was the one who headed this legal pursuit. In this phase more than 120,000 were sentenced as collaborators. 

And the third wave was the most retributive one and consisted of the most heinous of all the collaborators. Including the trial and sentence of  Philippe Pétain,  novelist Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Maurice Papon and Pierre Laval. The Vichy government was doomed with Laval being executed and Philippe facing life imprisonment.

The stats were that more than 6000 unauthorized executions were carried out pre liberation. Another 4000 were carried out after France was liberated. And after that almost 7 thousand collaborators were sentenced to death officially after being tried in french courts. Among them only more than 700 were executed. 

The official process of bringing justice to the collaborators continued well into the 80's. Many escaped in between and individuals like Jacques Ploncard d’Assac, who supported Nazis by writing anti-Semitic propaganda , even managed to become advisor of one of the Portugalsprime minister of that time


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