#1 Novembis 16 2013
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Extract from p.494 The Collapse of the Third Republic: An Inquiry into the fall of France in 1940 by William L. Shirer(J) (London: Secker & Warburg Ltd, 1972)
[CTR was written as a sequel to Rise and Fall of the Third Reich which WLS published in 1960].
French writers like Count Alphonse de Chateaubriant the celebrated author of La Briere made pilgrimage to Germany in 1937. He quickly became a convert, a worshipper of Hitler, who he saw as Christ-like figure. An admirer of National-Socialism, he found Germany full of humanism and Christian ideals. This Germany wished only peace with its neighbours, especially France, and had no 'beast of prey' in its noble spirit. His next book, La Gerbe des Forces, had an immediate impact on his homeland. In it he wrote:
'Hitler is immensely good…if he salutes the masses with one hand he holds out the other faithfully towards God…the thoughts of Hitler have their roots deep in the profound waters of the Christian sea. Hitler is trying to raise a Christian temple from Germany…the National Socialists are the beginning of the work of God'.
The book was widely read in French military circles. Henri de Kerillis(J) recalls meeting one day with General Weygand who was reading it. Weygand asked: 'what do you think of this?' Not long after Daladier began charging journalists he deemed too 'pro-German'. He started with Loys Aubin, chief news editor of Le Temps and Poirier, former administrator of Le Temps and then advertising manager of Le Figaro".
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