Foreign Legion Soldiers in French Indochina, 1953
Now we will talk about the tragic events of the First Indochina War, during which the patriots of Vietnam led by Ho Chi Minh forced the French colonialists to leave Vietnam. And as part of the cycle, we look at these events through a prism stories French Foreign Legion. For the first time we will name the names of some famous legion commanders - they will become the heroes of the following articles, but we will begin to get acquainted with them already in this.
Vietnam Independence League (Vietnam)
How the French came to Indochina was described in an article "Dogs of War" of the French Foreign Legion ". And after the outbreak of World War II, the territory of French Indochina fell under Japanese rule. The French administration (controlled by the Vichy government) tacitly agreed with the presence of Japanese troops in the colony, but for some reason they reacted very nervously to attempts by the Vietnamese to resist the Japanese. French officials believed that at the end of the war they would be able to agree with the Japanese on the division of spheres of influence. And the Vietnamese, in their opinion, did not have to worry about the question of who would later be their masters. It was the French colonial forces who crushed two anti-Japanese uprisings of 1940 - in the county of Baxon in the north of the country and in the central county of Dyolong.
As a result, the Vietnamese, having not found understanding among the French colonial authorities, in May 1941 created the patriotic organization “Vietnam Independence League” (Vietnam), in which the Communists played a key role. The Japanese were forced to join the fight against partisans in Vietnam only in November 1943 - until then, the French had successfully dealt with them.
At first, the weak and poorly armed detachments of the Vietnamese rebels were continuously replenished and gained combat experience. On December 22, 1944, the first detachment of the regular army of Vietnam was created, commanded by the then little-known Vo Nguyen Ziap, a graduate of the University of Hanoi and a former teacher of the French language - later he would be called the Red Napoleon and included in various versions of the lists of the greatest commanders of the XNUMXth century.
Although the officials of the Vichy government of French Indochina actually acted as allies of Japan, this did not save them from arrest when on March 9, 1945, the Japanese disarmed the French colonial troops in Vietnam. The absolute majority of the military personnel of these units obediently and meekly weapon. The soldiers and officers of the Fifth Regiment of the Foreign Legion tried to save the honor of France, who broke into China with fights and heavy losses (this was described in a previous article - “The French Foreign Legion in the First and Second World Wars”).
Vietnam turned out to be a much more serious rival - its units continued to successfully fight against the Japanese troops. Finally, on August 13, 1945, Vietmin launched an offensive; on August 19, it was taken by Hanoi; at the end of the month, the Japanese were held only in the south of the country. On September 2, at a rally in liberated Saigon, Ho Chi Minh announced the creation of a new state - the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. On this day, Vietnam took control of almost all the cities of the country.
Nguyen Shin Kung, better known as Ho Chi Minh ("Light Carrier"). No, this is not self-conceit and not a hint to the citizens of Vietnam: this is the name of the poor man whose documents were used by a young revolutionary arrested by the Kuomintang. Ho Chi Minh had 12 more pseudonyms. Collage of photos of different years
And only from September 6 to 11, soldiers of the 20th (Indian) division of the British began to land in Saigon. The first thing they saw was the slogans:
“Welcome, Britons, Americans, Chinese, Russians — all but the French!”
“Down with French imperialism!”
But British Major General Douglas Gracie, the commander of the 20th Division, who arrived in Saigon on September 13, said he did not recognize the national government of Vietnam. The former masters of the country, the French, were to come to power.
The return of the colonialists
On September 22, the liberated representatives of the French administration, with the help of the British, took control of Saigon, the response was a strike and unrest in the city, to suppress which Gracie had to re-arm three regiments of Japanese prisoners. And only on October 15 the first French combat unit arrived in Saigon - the Sixth Colonial Regiment. Finally, on October 29, Raul Salan arrived in Indochina, which was described a little in the previous article. He took command of the French troops in Tonkin and China.
Commander of the French Armed Forces in the Far East, Cavalier of the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor Raul Salan and Prince of Laos Savang Loeang Prabang, May 4, 1953
French soldiers proudly march around Saigon, liberated by Vietnamese troops, but taken from the Vietnamese by the British, November 1945
In the second half of October, the British and Japanese drove the Vietmin detachments from Saigon, capturing the cities of Thuduk, Bien Hoa, Thuzaumoti, and then Suanlok and Benkat. And the French paratroopers of the Foreign Legion, led by Lt. Col. Jacques Massouux (whose name we will hear more than once in the next articles of the cycle) took the city of Mitho.
And then from the north the offensive was also launched by the 200th Kuomintang army.
By the end of the year, the French brought the number of their troops in the south of the country to 80 thousand people. They acted in this extremely stupid way - so much so that Tom Driberg, adviser to Lord Mountbatten (who accepted the official surrender of the troops of the Japanese field marshal Terauti), wrote in October 1945 about the "extreme cruelty" and "shameful vengeance scenes of oppressed French degenerates being smoked by defenseless annamites."
And Major Robert Clark spoke of returning Frenchmen like this:
"They were a gang of rather undisciplined thugs, and subsequently it came as no surprise to me that the Vietnamese did not want to accept their rule."
The British were shocked by the frankly contemptuous attitude of the French towards the Allied Indians from the 20th British division. Her commander, Douglas Gracie, even turned to the French authorities with an official request to explain to his soldiers that his people "regardless of skin color, are friends and can not be considered as" black "."
When shocked by reports of British units participating in punitive operations against the Vietnamese, Lord Mountbatten tried to get clarification from Gracie himself (“couldn’t the French leave such dubious work?”), He calmly replied:
“The involvement of the French would lead to the destruction of not 20, but 2 houses, and most likely, together with the residents.”
That is, having destroyed 20 Vietnamese houses, the British also rendered this service to the unfortunate Aborigines - they did not allow them to be “smoked with opium from French degenerates.”
In mid-December 1945, the British began to transfer their positions to the Allies.
On January 28, 1946, a farewell joint parade of British and French military units took place in front of the Saigon Cathedral, at which Gracie handed over two Japanese swords obtained by surrender to French General Leclerc: thus he showed everyone that power over Vietnam was transferred to France.
General Gracie hands a Japanese sword to General Leclerc, January 28, 1946
With a sigh of relief, the English general flew away from Saigon, giving the French the opportunity to deal with the unexpectedly strong communists of Vietnam. The last two Indian battalions left Vietnam on March 30, 1946.
Reply Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh tried to negotiate for a long time, even turned to President Truman for help, and only having exhausted all the possibilities of a peaceful settlement, he gave orders to attack the Anglo-French troops in the south and the Kuomintang troops in the north.
On January 30, 1946, the Vietnamese army hit the Kuomintang troops, and on February 28, the Chinese fled in panic to their territory. Under these conditions, the French reluctantly had to go on March 6 to recognize the independence of the DRV - as part of the Indochina Federation and the French Union, hastily invented by de Gaulle's lawyers.
It soon became clear that France is still considering Vietnam as its powerless colony and the agreement on the recognition of the DRV was concluded only in order to accumulate forces sufficient to wage a full-fledged war. Troops from Africa, Syria and Europe were hastily transferred to Vietnam. Soon, hostilities were resumed and the shock forces of the French army became precisely parts of the Foreign Legion. France threw four infantry and one armored cavalry regiments of the Legion, two parachute battalions (which later became regiments), and also its engineer and engineer units into the "meat grinder" of this war.
Soldiers of the Second Parachute Battalion of the Foreign Legion in Indochina
Soldiers of the Fifth Regiment of the Foreign Legion in North Vietnam, 1950
Legionnaires during dismissal in Saigon
The beginning of the First Indochina War
The fighting began after the French demanded from the DRV authorities to transfer the city of Haiphong to them on November 21, 1946. The Vietnamese refused and on November 22, warships of the metropolis began shelling the city: according to French estimates, about 2000 civilians were killed. Thus began the First Indochina War. The French troops launched an offensive in all directions, on December 19 they approached Hanoi, but managed to take it only after 2 months of continuous fighting, almost completely destroying the city.
Legionnaires from 1st Battalion, 2e REI in French Indochina, 1950
To the surprise of the French, the Vietnamese did not give up: having withdrawn the remaining troops to the northern border province of Vietnam, they resorted to the tactics of “a thousand pin shots”.
The most interesting thing is that up to 5 thousand Japanese soldiers, for some reason remaining in Vietnam, fought with the French on the side of Vietnam, sometimes occupying high command posts. For example, Major Ishii Takuo became a colonel in Vietnam. For some time he headed the Quang Ngai Military Academy (where 5 more former Japanese officers worked as teachers), and then served as the “chief adviser” to the partisans of South Vietnam. Colonel Mukayama, who had previously served in the headquarters of the 38th Imperial Army, became an adviser to Vo Nguyen Ziap, commander of the armed forces of Vietnam, and then the Viet Cong. In the hospitals in Vietnam, 2 Japanese doctors and 11 Japanese nurses worked.
What were the reasons for the transfer of Japanese troops to the side of Vietnam? Perhaps they believed that after surrender they “lost face” and were ashamed to return to their homeland. It has also been suggested that some of these Japanese had reason to fear prosecution for war crimes.
On October 7, 1947, the French tried to end the war by destroying the leadership of Vietnam: during the Lea operation, three parachute battalions of the legion (1200 people) landed in the city of Bak-Kan, but Ho Chi Minh and Vo Nguyen Ziap managed to leave, and the paratroopers and the hurrying them to help the infantry units suffered heavy losses in battles with parts of Vietnam and partisans.
The two hundred thousandth colonial army of France, which included 1500 tanks, supported by "native" troops (also about 200 thousand people) could not do anything with the Vietnamese rebels, the number of which at first barely reached 35-40 thousand soldiers, and only by the end of 1949 increased to 80 thousand.
French troops move along the river at Hoa Binh
The first successes of Vietnam
In March 1949, the Kuomintang was defeated in China, which immediately improved the supply of the Vietnamese troops, and in the autumn of that year the military units of Vietnam went on the offensive. In September 1950, the French garrisons near the Chinese border were destroyed. And on October 9, 1950, in the battle of Khao Bang, the French lost 7 thousand people killed and wounded, 500 cars, 125 mortars, 13 howitzers, 3 armored platoons and 9000 small arms.
Cao Bang in late 1950
The 6th Parachute Colonial Battalion was surrounded at Tat Ke (Kao-Bang post-satellite). On the night of October 6, his troops made an unsuccessful attempt at a breakthrough, during which they suffered heavy losses. The surviving soldiers and officers were captured. Among them was Lieutenant Jean Graziani, who was twenty-four years old, three of whom (from 16 years old) he fought against Nazi Germany - first in the US Army, then in the British SAS and finally as part of the Free France troops. He tried to escape twice (the second time he walked 70 km), spent 4 years in captivity and at the time of his release he weighed about 40 kg (such as he was called the "squad of the living dead"). Jean Graziani will be one of the heroes of the article, which will talk about the war in Algeria.
That was Captain Jean Graziani in Algeria in 1957
Another member of the "squad of the living dead" was Pierre-Paul Janpierre, an active participant in the French Resistance (he spent more than a year in the Mauthausen-Gouzen concentration camp) and the legendary commander of the Foreign Legion, who fought at the Charton stronghold as part of the First Parachute Battalion and was also wounded captured. After his recovery, he led the newly created First Parachute Battalion, which became a regiment on September 1, 1955. We will also talk about him in an article on the Algerian war.
Lieutenant Colonel Pierre Jeanpierre shortly before his death
Vietnam’s forces were growing, and already at the end of October 1950, French troops retreated from most of North Vietnam.
As a result, on December 22, 1950, the French again declared recognition of Vietnam's sovereignty within the French Union, but the leaders of Vietnam no longer believed them. And the situation on the fronts was clearly not in favor of the colonialists and their "native" allies. In 1953, at the disposal of Vietnam there were already about 425 thousand soldiers - soldiers of regular troops and partisans.
At this time, the United States provided huge military assistance to France. From 1950 to 1954 Americans handed over to the French 360 combat aircraft, 390 ships (including 2 aircraft carriers), 1400 tanks and armored vehicles, 175 thousand small arms. 24 American pilots made 682 sorties, two of them were killed.
In 1952, US military assistance accounted for 40% of all armaments received by French units in Indochina, in 1953 - 60%, in 1954 - 80%.
Fierce hostilities continued with varying success for several more years, but in the spring of 1953, Vietmin both strategically and tactically outplayed the self-confident Europeans: made a horse move, hitting Laos and forcing the French to concentrate large forces in Dien Bien Phu.
Dienbienfu: Vietnamese trap for the French army
Dienbienfu Valley, view from above, photograph of 1953
On November 20, 1953, French paratroopers seized the remaining airfield from the Japanese in the Kuvshinov Valley (Dienbienfu) and a 3 km bridgehead 16, on which planes with soldiers and equipment began to arrive. On the hills around, on the orders of Colonel Christian de Castries, 11 forts were built - Anna-Marie, Gabriel, Beatrice, Claudine, Francoise, Huguette, Natasha, Dominic, Juno, Elian and Isabelle. In the French army, it was said that they got their names from the names of de Castries's mistresses.
Dienbienfu and Fort Isabelle
11 thousand soldiers and officers of various units of the French army occupied 49 fortified points surrounded by galleries of trench passages and protected from all sides by minefields. Later, their number was brought up to 15 thousand (15.094 people): 6 parachute and 17 infantry battalions, three artillery regiments, a sapper regiment, a tank battalion and 12 aircraft.
French trenches at Dienbienfu
The supply of these parts was carried out by a grouping of 150 large transport aircraft. For the time being, Vietmin did not interfere with the French, and what happened next, the famous stratagem says: "lure to the roof and remove the stairs."
On March 6–7, Vietnam’s units practically “removed” this: they attacked Za-Lam and Kat-bi airfields, destroying more than half of the “transporters” —78 vehicles.
Then the Katyusha of Vietnam broke down the Dienbienfu runways, the last French plane managed to land and take off on March 26th.
One of the last aircraft takes the wounded from Dienbenfu. March 1954
Since then, the supply was carried out only by dropping goods by parachute, which was actively tried to interfere with the Vietnamese anti-aircraft guns concentrated around the base.
Now the encircled French group was almost doomed.
To supply their group, the Vietnamese, without exaggeration, accomplished a labor feat by cutting a hundred-kilometer highway in the jungle and building a transshipment base 55 km from Dienbienfu. The French command considered it impossible to deliver artillery shells and mortars to Dienbienf - the Vietnamese carried them in the mountains and the jungle and dragged them into the hills around the base.
On March 13, the 38th (Steel) Vietnamese division went on the offensive and captured Beatrice Fort. On March 14th, Fort Gabriel fell. On March 17, part of the Thai soldiers who defended Fort Anna-Marie crossed over to the Vietnamese, the rest retreated. After that, the siege of other fortifications of Dienbenfu began.
French soldiers lead a wounded man to a hospital in Dienbienfu, March 1954
On March 15, Colonel Charles Piro, commander of the artillery units of the garrison Dienbienfu committed suicide: he promised that the French artillery would dominate throughout the battle and easily suppress the enemy’s guns:
"The Vietnamese guns will fire no more than three times, as I destroy them."
Since he did not have a hand, he could not load the gun on his own. And therefore, seeing the results of the “work” of the Vietnamese artillery (mountains of corpses and many wounded), he blew himself up with a grenade.
Marcel Bijard and his paratroopers
Marcel Bijard in Indochina
On March 16, at the head of the paratroopers of the 6th colonial battalion, Marcel Bijar arrived in Dienbienf — a truly legendary person in the French army. He never thought about military service, and even during military service in the 23rd regiment (1936-1938), his commander told the young man that he did not see “anything military” in him. However, Bijar again appeared in the army in 1939, and after the outbreak of hostilities he asked for a groupe franc, an intelligence and sabotage unit of his regiment. In June 1940, this detachment was able to break out of the encirclement, but France surrendered, and Bijar was still in German captivity. Only 18 months later, on the third attempt, he managed to escape to the territory controlled by the Vichy government, from where he was sent to one of the Siregal's tyrael regiments. In October 1943, this regiment was transferred to Morocco. After the landing of the allies, Bijar was in the unit of the British Special Air Service (SAS), which in 1944 operated on the border of France and Andorra. Then he received the nickname "Bruno" (call sign), which remained with him for life. In 1945, Bijar ended up in Vietnam, where he was later destined to become famous with the phrase:
“This will be done, if possible. And if it’s impossible, too. ”
Marcel Bijard (with walkie-talkie), Indochina, autumn 1953
In Dienbienfu, the influence of six commanders of paratrooper battalions on the decisions made by de Castries was so great that they were called the "parachute mafia." At the head of this "mafia group" was Lt. Col. Langle, who signed his reports to the authorities: "Langle and his 6 battalions." And his deputy was Bijar.
Lt. Col. Langle, March 1954
On the activities of Bijar in Vietnam, Jean Puget wrote:
“Bijar was not yet BB. He did not eat breakfast with the ministers, did not pose for the cover of the Paris Match, did not graduate from the General Staff academy, and did not even think about general stars. He did not know that he was a genius. He was him: he made a decision at a glance, gave the command in one word, carried away with him with one gesture. "
Bijar himself called the multi-day battle of Dienbyenf “Verdun of the jungle” and wrote later:
“If they had given me at least 10 thousand legionnaires, we would have survived. Everyone else, except for the legionnaires and paratroopers, was an incapable rabble, and it was impossible to hope for victory with such forces. ”
When the French army surrendered to Dienbienfu, Bijar was captured, where he spent 4 months, but the American journalist Robert Messenger in 2010 compared him with Tsar Leonid in obituary and his paratroopers with 300 Spartans.
And Max Booth, an American historian, said:
“Bijar’s life refutes the myth popular in the English world that the French are cowardly soldiers,“ cheese-eating surrender monkeys ””(raw foodists surrendered to monkeys).
He called him "a perfect warrior, one of the great soldiers of the century."
The Vietnamese government did not allow to dispel the ashes of Bijar in Dienbienf, so he was buried in the "Indochina War Memorial" (city of Frejus, France).
It was Bijar that became the prototype of the main character of the film by Mark Robson “The Lost Command”, the action of which begins with Dienbienfu.
Now look at the funny 17-year-old sailor who smiles at us from this photo:
In 1953-1956 this goner served in the military navy in Saigon and constantly received outfits out of turn for razdolbayskoy behavior. He also played a major role in the movie The Lost Squad:
Did you recognize him? This is ... Alain Delon! Even the salaga from the first photo can become a cult actor and a sex symbol of an entire generation if at the age of 17 he will not “drink the cologne”, but instead will serve in the navy during the not very popular war.
Here is how he recalled his service in the Navy:
“This time was the happiest in my life. It allowed me to become what I later became and who I am now. ”
And again, Alain Delon - with his former colleagues. The fighters remember the past days
We will also recall both Bijar and the film “The Missing Squad” in an article on the Algerian War. In the meantime, look again at this brave skydiver and his soldiers:
Marcel Bijard during Operation Irondel, Vietnam, July 1953
Paratroopers of the Bijar battalion, July 1953. The first three will die in Dienbienfu
The disaster of the French army at Dienbyenfu
The famous 13th half-brigade of the Foreign Legion also ended up in Dienbienf and suffered the greatest losses in its history - about three thousand people, including two lieutenant colonel commanders.
The defeat in this battle actually predetermined the outcome of the First Indochina War.
Former Sergeant of the Legion Claude-Yves Solange recalled Dienbienf:
“It may be immodest to say so about the legion, but in our ranks the real gods of war fought, and not only the French, but also the Germans, Scandinavians, Russians, Japanese, even a couple of South Africans. The Germans passed the Second World War, and the Russians, too. I remember that in the second company of my battalion there were two Russian Cossacks who fought near Stalingrad: one was a lieutenant of the Soviet field gendarmerie (meaning the NKVD troops), the other was a zugfuhrer in the cavalry division of the SS (!). Both died during the defense of the Isabel stronghold. The Communists fought like hell, but we also showed them that we knew how to fight. I think that not a single European army in the second half of the 20th century happened - and, God willing, will never be able to - wage such terrible and large-scale battles hand-to-hand, as we do in this damned valley. The hurricane fire of their artillery and torrential rains turned trenches and dugouts into a mess, and we often fought waist-deep in water. "Their assault groups either made a breakthrough or brought their trenches to ours, and then dozens, hundreds of fighters launched knives, bayonets, stocks, sapper shovels, hatchets."
By the way, I don’t know how valuable this information will seem to you, but, according to eyewitnesses, the German legionnaires fought in hand-to-hand fights in Dienbienfu silently, the Russians screamed loudly (possibly with obscene words).
In 1965, the French director Pierre Schönderfer (a former front-line cameraman captured in Dienbienfu) made his first film about the Vietnam War and the events of 1954 - "317 Platoon", one of the heroes of which is a former Wehrmacht soldier, and now the ensign of the Legion Wildorf.
This film remained in the shadow of his other grandiose work - “Dienbyenfu” (1992), among the heroes of which, by the will of the director, was the captain of the Foreign Legion, a former pilot of the Normandie-Niemen squadron (hero of the Soviet Union!).
Shot from Pierre Schönderffer's film “Dienbienfu” (1992). Patrick Chauvel as a pilot Duroc: on his chest is a real star of the Hero of the Soviet Union, which was “borrowed” by one of the senior Vietnamese consultants
Images from the film "Dienbienfu":
And this is front-line cameraman Pierre Shenderfer, the photo was taken on September 1, 1953:
Realizing what they had plunged into, the French decided to attract the “elder brother” - they turned to the United States with a request to deliver an air strike on the Vietnamese troops surrounding Dienbienf with hundreds of B-29 bombers, even hinting at the possibility of using atomic bombs (Operation Vulture). The Americans then prudently avoided - their turn to "get on the neck" from the Vietnamese has not yet arrived.
The Condor plan, which involved the landing of the last parachute units in the Vietnamese rear, was not implemented due to a lack of transport aircraft. As a result, the infantry units of the French moved to Dienbienf by land - and were late. The Albatross plan, which implied a breakthrough in the base’s garrison, was declared unrealistic by the command of the blocked units.
Fort Isabelle was surrounded on March 30 (the battle for which Claude-Yves Solange recalled above was recalled), but his garrison resisted until May 7.
Fort Elian-1 fell on April 12, on the night of May 6 - Fort Elian-2. On May 7, the French army surrendered.
The battle of Dienbienf lasted 54 days - from March 13 to May 7, 1954. The losses of the French in manpower and military equipment were huge. 10863 soldiers and officers of the elite French regiments were captured. Only about 3290 people returned to France, including several hundred legionnaires: many died from wounds or tropical diseases, and citizens of the Soviet Union and the socialist countries of Eastern Europe were carefully removed from the Vietnamese camps and sent home to “atone with blast labor”. Incidentally, they were much more fortunate than the rest - among them, the percentage of survivors was an order of magnitude higher.
Vietnamese soldiers hoist a flag over the captured headquarters of the French army, Dienbienfu, 1954
French prisoners after liberation from the camp. Haipong, end of August 1954
Not all French units surrendered at Dienbienf: Colonel Laland, commander of Fort Isabel, ordered the garrison to break through the positions of the Vietnamese. These were the Legionnaires of the Third Regiment, the tyrants of the First Algerian Regiment and the soldiers of the Thai units. Tanks, guns, heavy machine guns were thrown at the fort - they went into battle with light small arms. The seriously wounded were left in the fort, slightly wounded were offered a choice - to join the assault group or to stay, warning that they would stop because of them, and, moreover, no one would carry them. Laland himself was captured before he could leave the fort. Algerians, stumbling into an ambush, surrendered on May 7. On May 8–9, the column of Captain Michaud surrendered, which the Vietnamese pressed to the cliffs 12 km from Isabel, but 4 Europeans and 40 Thais, jumping into the water, through the mountains and the jungle nevertheless reached the location of the French units in Laos. A platoon formed by abandoned tank crews and several 11th company legionnaires left the encirclement, having completed 20 km in 160 days. Four tank crews and two paratroopers of Isabel Fort escaped captivity on May 13, four of them (three tank crews and a paratrooper) also managed to get to their own.
Legionnaire of the 1st Parachute Battalion of the Foreign Legion, 1954
As early as May 8, 1954, negotiations began in Geneva on peace and the withdrawal of French troops from Indochina. After losing a long war to the patriotic movement of Vietnam, France left Vietnam, which remained divided along the 17th parallel.
Vietnam, Dien Bien Phu, Victory Monument: three Vietnamese soldiers on the roof of the de Castries bunker with a flag on which the phrase: “Decided to fight. Decided to win "
Raul Salan, who had been fighting in Indochina since October 1945, did not experience the shame of defeat at Dienbienf: on January 1, 1954 he was appointed inspector general of the national defense forces and returned to Vietnam on June 8, 1954, again leading the French forces. But the time of French Indochina has already expired.
On October 27, 1954, Salan returned to Paris, and on the night of November 1, militants of the Algerian National Liberation Front attacked government offices, army barracks, houses of the "black-footed" and shot a school bus with children in the city of Bon. Ahead, Salan had a bloody war in North Africa and his desperate and hopeless attempt to save French Algeria.
This will be discussed in separate articles, in the next we will talk about the uprising in Madagascar, the Suez crisis and the circumstances of the independence of Tunisia and Morocco.