The collaboration itself might have been defensible (due to the need to protect France and the French people) if it wasn't for the deportation and murder of a quarter of France's Jewish population. France didn't have to agree to these deportations considering that, AFAIK, they weren't included in the armistice agreement between France and Germany. This is where I think that Petain's dark spot lies.certainly he collaborated with the German and buried the third republic , a rather pathetic governance which had thoroughly failed
Honestly what choice was there ,
a glorious final slaughter ? running to North Africa leaving France under Nazi occupation ?
as Chlodio mention he was as much a puppet as an actor , used by factions who wanted governing with his great reputation as a front
I think you're thinking of Joffre here. Foch was a relatively minor commander in 1914, even more so than Petain was at that time. And while Foch would gain promotion for his services on Marne in 1914, it wasn't enough control the entire French army. That remained with Joffre until December 1916.Petain is much more worthy of respect than Foch who misdirected the whole French army into near extermination for more than 2 years
or Foch with his fumous theory of the superiority of rapid charge to overcome a defense.
He did... and that was a good thing. Particularly as it related to his more defensive tactics, and in a way that was critical to France's recovery after the 1917 mutiny.Petain cared for the men and was called upon to bring peace when the poilus revolted in 17 .
It's not so much that Petain was opposed to the concept. However, unlike Joffre, Petain far more quickly recognized the weaknesses the French Army had from 1914 to 1916 with regard to the cannon they depended on and the number of shells they had to fire. He also recognized how effective the guns they had could be and recognized how best to employ them. In this, with France's equipment and logistical issues early in the war, Petain was more in favor of small scale attacks where they could maximize the guns and shells to use. It wouldn't mean a huge penetration of the German lines, but it would have the potential to do more damage to the Germans than the French themselves took, as seen by his action at Malmaison in 1917 after the mutiny. The ground the French gained was small, but it was never intended to be a huge gain and the French inflicted more casualties than they lost. It wouldn't be until late 1918 that the French had the guns and shells in sufficient numbers to be able to blast a hole in the German lines, by which point he was more willing to the "big push" as by late 1918 the German position was such that the breakthrough was possible and actually happened.he was opposed to the concept of the big push and didn't believe ,rightly ,that a breakthrough could be done .