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Chief of the Defence Staff (France)
Nominated by Minister of Defence
Appointed by President of the Republic
Incumbent Admiral Édouard Guillaud
Personal details
Website http://www.defense.gouv.fr

The Chief of the Defence Staff (French language: Chef d'État-Major des Armées) (acronym: CEMA) is the chief of defence of the French military. The position is currently held by Admiral Édouard Guillaud.

Functions[]

The Chief of the Defence Staff has two roles:

  • assisting the Minister of Defence in the preparation and organisation of the armed forces
  • under the authority of the President and the Government, maintaining overall command of military operations and proposing the military measures to adopt (general strategy).

He is responsible for :

  • the conduct of operations : plans of attack, general articulation of the forces, distribution of operational means between theatre commanders (over whom he has full authority)
  • training : he checks their aptitude for their missions and has a permanent right of inspection over them ;
  • preparation for the future : plans and programmes for military capacity. He oversees the pulling-together of the armed forces' means and participates in the preparation and execution of the defence budget ;
  • inter-branch organisation : he oversees the forces' organisation.
  • military relations with the armed forces of other nations : he directs military missions abroad, organises the French forces' participation in international missions and exercises, follows international negotiations and represents France on military committees of international organisations.

Directly under his authority are :

  • the chefs d'état-major of each of the four arms (Army, Navy, Air Force, Gendarmerie) ;
  • the état-major des armées (EMA);
  • the commandants supérieurs in the départements and overseas territories and the commandants of French forces abroad (COMSUP and COMFOR), the general staff of the zones de défense (OGZD) and the departmental military delegates (DMD);
  • the inter-arm organs:
    • the direction du renseignement militaire (DRM) – Director of Military Intelligence;
    • the commandement des opérations spéciales (COS) – Commander of Special Operations;
    • the état-major interarmées de force et d'entraînement (EMIA-FE);
    • the direction centrale du service de santé des armées (DCSSA) – Military Medical Services;
    • the direction centrale du service des essences des armées (DCSEA) – Military Fuel Services;
    • the direction interarmées des réseaux d'infrastructures et des systèmes d'information (DIRISI) – Inter-arm infrastructure and Information Systems directorate;
    • the enseignement militaire supérieur.

List of holders[]

  • Général d'armée Paul Ely (August 1953 – June 1954)
  • Général d'armée Augustin Guillaume (1954 – 28 February 1956) (Resignation)
  • Général d'armée Paul Ely (March 1956 – May 1958)
  • Général d'armée Henri Lorillot (May – June 1958)
  • Général d'armée Paul Ely (June 1958 – February 1959)
  • Général d'armée Gaston Lavaud (February 1959 – April 1961)
  • Général d'armée aérienne André Martin (April 1961 – July 1962)
  • Général d'armée Charles Ailleret (July 1962 – March 1968)
  • Général d'armée aérienne Michel Fourquet (April 1968 – 9 June 1971)
  • Général d'armée aérienne François Maurin (10 June 1971 – June 1975)
  • Général d'armée Guy Méry (July 1975 – 19 July 1980)
  • Général d'armée Claude Vanbremeersch (20 July 1980 – 31 January 1981)
  • Général d'armée Jeannou Lacaze (1 February 1981 – July 1985)
  • Général d'armée aérienne Jean Saulnier (August 1985 – November 1987)
  • Général d'armée Maurice Schmitt (November 1987 – 23 April 1991)
  • Amiral Jacques Lanxade (24 April 1991 – 8 September 1995)
  • Général d'armée aérienne Jean-Philippe Douin (9 September 1995 – 29 April 1998)
  • Général d'armée Jean-Pierre Kelche (9 April 1998 – 29 October 2002)
  • Général d'armée Henri Bentégeat (30 October 2002 – 3 October 2006)
  • Général d’armée Jean-Louis Georgelin (4 October 2006 – 24 February 2010)
  • Amiral Édouard Guillaud (25 February 2010 – present)

See also[]

Sources[]

  • This page is a translation of fr:Chef d'état-major des armées.
  • (French) Décret N° 2009-869. Retrieved on 2013-07-10.

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