order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

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Georges JEROME
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order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Georges JEROME » 20 Mar 2013 19:39

Hello,

The "armée d’Armistice" so called « armée de Vichy » was created on 25/10/1940. It was a revanche for the « Diktat de Versailles » : the army was limited to 100 000 in France.
Law from 5/2/1941 gave the organisation of the metropolitan army made of 8 "Divisions Militaires" as part of 2 "Groupes de Divisions Militaires" . This Organisation will be not changed until 27 novembre 1942 when Hitler decided to disband it following the invasion of the free zone. this « armée » was without heavy équipments : armoured, heavy artillerie ...

GROUPE DE DIVISIONS MILITAIRES 1 (Avignon)
7e Division Militaire (Bourg en Bresse)
Infanterie : 65e R.I., 151e R.I., 4e demi-brigade d’Infanterie
Cavalerie : 5e Dragons
Artillerie : 61e R.A.
10e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
14e Division Militaire (Lyon)
Infanterie : 153e R.I., 159e R.I., 3e demi-brigade de Chasseurs
Cavalerie : 11 e Cuirassiers
Artillerie : 2e R.A.
4e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
15e Division Militaire (Marseille)
Infanterie : 43e R.I.Alpine, 2e demi-brigade de chasseurs, 21e R.I. coloniale, 173e Bataillon autonome de Corse
Cavalerie : 12e Cuirassiers
Artillerie : 10e R.A. coloniale
7e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
16e Division Militaire (Montpellier)
Infanterie : 8e R.I., 51e R.I., 2e R.I. coloniale
Cavalerie : 3e Dragons
Artillerie : 15e R.A.
2e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
Reserve Générale
Brigade de Cavalerie : 1er et 7e régiment de chasseurs
Garde : 1, 2 ET 3e Légion
Défense Aérienne du Territoire Groupements 12, 13 et 14

GROUPE DE DIVISIONS MILITAIRES 2 (Clermont Ferrand Royat)
9e Division Militaire (Chateauroux)
Infanterie : 1er R.I., 27e R.I. , 32e R.I.
Cavalerie : 8e Cuirassiers
Artillerie : 72e R.A.
6e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
12e Division Militaire (Limoges)
Infanterie : 26e R.I., 1e demi-brigade de chasseurs, 41e R.I. ,
Cavalerie : 6e Cuirassiers
Artillerie : 35e R.A.
1e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
13e Division Militaire (Clermont Ferrrand)
Infanterie : 5e R.I., 92e R.I., 152e R.I. ,
Cavalerie : 8e Dragons
Artillerie : 4e R.A.
9e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
17e Division Militaire (Toulouse)
Infanterie : 18e R.I., 150e R.I., 23e R.I. ,
Cavalerie : 2e Dragons
Artillerie : 14e R.A.
3e Bat du Génie + 1 Groupement de Transport + 1 Cie du Train
Reserve Générale
Brigade de Cavalerie : 2er et 3e Hussards
Garde : 4, 5 et 6e Légion
Défense Aérienne du Territoire Groupements 21, 22, 23 et 24

Georges

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Loïc
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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Loïc » 20 Mar 2013 21:59

hello

the Armée d'Armistice didn't have Groupements de Transport, Transport units were these companies of Train : there were Groupes de Transmissions (Signals GT)

the 4th Half-Brigade was Chasseurs à pied (DBCP) not Infantry
in the 17e Division Militaire it was the 24e RA not the 14e

the DAT Groupements were divided between the 404e & 405e DCA

the Armistice Army including "Guard" (former Mobile Republican Guard before 1941, former Mobile Gendarmerie) didn't reach 100 000 but ~95 000men but with the Anti-Aircraft Artillery there were 10 to 15 000men more

there were also Indigenous mainly from Indochina and Madagascar from the companies of the Groupements de Militaires Indigènes Coloniaux Rapatriables : ~16 500 but I am no sure that they were armed, they were always there in 1944-1945, these companies were not disbanded by the Germans in november 1942

and others branches of the Armed Forces were still in Metropolitan France
-National Gendarmerie
-Armée de l'Air
-Marine Nationale

so there were probably ~195 000men in Metropolitan France in 1940, Army Navy Air & Gendarmerie
in november 1942 the Army (Armée de Terre) had only 60 to 75 000men

Gendarmerie Legions and ~12 Sappers Companies of which 3 Signals to rebuild bridges, railways, communications were the only French military units in northern occupied zone since july 1940

Regards
Loïc

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Leo Niehorster » 21 Mar 2013 09:20

Great Information.
Thanks guys. :D

Leo
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Georges JEROME
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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Georges JEROME » 21 Mar 2013 17:46

Merci Loïc,
much appreciated corrections and add infos.

Georges

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 11 Jan 2015 01:11

Post 1919 the Reichswehr made a effort to build a 'shadow' army out of hidden weapons and a undocumented pool of reservists. Is there any evidence the French Armistice Army did the same? If so are there any estimates of how large it might have been?

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by pugsville » 11 Jan 2015 08:57

certainly in North Africa Vichy created 60,000 police to serve as a semi military reserve

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Georges JEROME » 11 Jan 2015 12:46

as soon as 1940 Cdt Emile Mollard chief of section "Materiel" 1er Bureau created Under cover of Armistice army an hidden organisation called Camouflage du Matériel C.D.M. (Camouflage of Material). 3720 military lorries were sold by army to 18 companies (discovered on dec 43 949 were seized by german). Lorries, weapons and ammunitions were hidden.
Before invasion of South of France on november 42 light armoured cars were munufactured. but after invasion Factories were destroyed and most of material was sized by germans.
http://ammacdufumelois.free.fr/memo-general-mollard.htm

Georges

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 11 Jan 2015 14:23

Merci for both of those replies.

One of my European history professors (Kline-Albrandht) did a bit of research in the 1960s or 70s. including interviewing a couple of elderly Reichswehr officers. He estimated the actual trained reserve was between 300,000 & 400,000. Not unreasonable to think France could have had 50,000 or 100,000 ready through 1942.

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Sid Guttridge » 11 Jan 2015 14:43

Hi Carl,

You may remember this I posted three years ago:


I have more on this from French language sources, which I will try to dig out for you. From memory:

The Vichy French were evading the armistice terms in numerous ways.

They were not allowed secret codes and had to transmit in clear, but they hid one code specifically for a secret mobilization. A secret command centre was prepared in a farm house south of Vichy.

Vichy had been obliged to destroy its mobilization records and abolish the relevant army staff, but its civil census department rebuilt them from scratch. As a result, they planned to triple their standing army of eight divisions to 24. They had sufficient small arms for this.

They hid dozens of field and anti-tank guns, but these were insufficient back a force of 24 divisions.

Their army was not meant to be motorized and had masses of bicycles instead, but in 1940 they secretly transferred thousands of military trucks to civilian transport companies, which could be remobilized on demand.

They hid a small number of tanks in country garages and continued to design new ones.

They built armour kits to quickly convert 200 imported US 6x4 trucks into armoured vehicles.

They fitted secret auxiliary fuel tanks in the rear fuselage of some of their fighters so that they could be evacuated to French North Africa if necessary. (The Germans discovered this).

The Deuxieme Bureau, disguised as an internal police service, watched the Germans across the whole of France closely and told the British of their redployments for the invasion of Russia.

As they weren't allowed anti-tank guns, they developed a sticky bomb to disable tanks. The specifications were reportedly supplied to the British.

The Vichy Army in metroplitan France was divided into two, four-division corps. The western corps was to have attempted any seizure of an Atlantic port. (From memory, I think this may have been La Palisse, because it had deep water.)

I seem to remember that there were two possible sites for a Mediterranean bridgehead, one of which was at Sete and the other nearer the Spanish border.

There were also plans to interdict any German retreat back into the Reich.

However, the most practical Vichy plans were defensive. I attacked, they intended to establish eight divisional redoubts in mountainous area, where mobilized men could assemble and where the terrain would help counteract the shortage of heavy weaponry.


Cheers,

Sid.

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Georges JEROME » 11 Jan 2015 15:01

l'Organisation de la Résistance de l'Armée , a resistance organisation of former members (officers and NCO) of the french army had
50 000 membres on 1943.

http://lesamitiesdelaresistance.fr/lien16-ora.php

Georges

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Leo Niehorster » 12 Jan 2015 09:39

I have the order of battle of the Metropolitam Army up.

Anybody know what, if any changes, took place by 8 November 1942?
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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Sid Guttridge » 12 Jan 2015 12:50

Hi Leo,

I suspect none, officially, as its structure was approved and inspected by the Franco-German Armistice Commission.

Rather more variation was officially allowed for the air force, particularly in terms of more modern aircraft types.

Cheers,

Sid.

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Georges JEROME » 12 Jan 2015 12:59

I suggest you to consider the above comments of Loïc a fellow member which have a good knowlegde of the subject.


Georges

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 12 Jan 2015 16:58

Sid Guttridge wrote:Hi Carl,

You may remember this I posted three years ago:
Yes. I searched, but came up with little of use. Thanks for reposting it here..

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Re: order of battle of the metropolitan Armée d'Armistice

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 08 Mar 2021 06:40

A few questions six years later.
Sid Guttridge wrote:
11 Jan 2015 14:43
... The Deuxieme Bureau, disguised as an internal police service, watched the Germans across the whole of France closely and told the British of their redployments for the invasion of Russia.
Does anyone know the details of this liaison channel? Or sources to recommend? Particularly names of the principles?

Second, is there any information on the location of the eight army divisions & two corps HQ?

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