Tuesday, March 29, 2011

No one wants the Duke of Orleans

March 29, 1915

The Duke of Orléans, the French Legitimist heir to the throne, wants to serve in the military, preferably in France, but is not having any success, reports the New York Times.   The French government has refused the Duke's request "that he receive permission to enlist in the Foreign Legion under an assumed name."
The French newspaper, Francaise,  "deals at length" with the Duke's effort "to obtain service" under the flag of France.

The Duke also sought to "have amended the law passed in 1886," which forbids him from entering France or serving in the French army.   He said he would resume his exile later "if he were permitted to fight," but his efforts were "fruitless."

He was also denied enlistment in the British, Belgian and Russian armies.  The military authorities in those countries refused to accept him, "out of courtesy to the French Government."   The Duke then appealed to French Premier Viviani "for the right to enter the Foreign Legion," but the Premier responded saying that "such a step was impracticable," as the Duke would be recognized, and the Government "would be compelled to expel him from France."

Premier Viviani did suggest to the Duke that he try again to enter the Russian Army, and he promised to inform the Russian government  that France "would raise no objection.  Unfortunately, for the Duke,  Petrograd's response was "a polite refusal of the request."

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