Author-card of document number 32411

Num
32411
Date
Wednesday March 29, 1989
Ymd
Size
1335991
Title
New (civilian) director general for external security in France
Quoted name
Quoted name
Quoted name
Quoted place
Abstract
Our relations with the French Services and the director François Mermet have recently been excellent.
Source
Public records
HVV
Type
Document militaire
Language
EN
Citation
fAON

45510232 — 45510232 P.G1

T7 Dr / © /f/ FACSIMILE MESSAGE FORM | PAGE 1 0F 3 PAGES =
LE REFERENCE “| = Hi

| | | 3] NS seu INSTRUCTIONS : IMMEDIATE
OM : LILY 1 BRAUT. BoscH And
. GEEEdY COL L. Kemper

Fo : s

CURITY CLASSIFICATION : SECRET
IGINATOR‘S NO : LILN /Eaks/ QD op

LEASING UFFI
; . MUR.

PRECEDENCE : | MMEN/ATE

DEFENCE INTELLIGENCE
DECLASSIFIED

NEW (CIVILIAN) DIRECTOR GENERAL FOR
EXTERNAL SECURITY IN FRANCE

J.A.L STEINMANN M
72563596PE WO1 (|



NEW DIRECTOR GENERAL FOR THE DGSE

1. Claude SILBERZAHN (54 years old) has just been appointed to succed
General François MERMET as Director General of the French "secret service",

2. SILBERZAHN was born on 18 March 1935 in Mulhouse. He has a degree
in Law and is an old student of the French National School
of the Overseas territories.


3. Having been intergrated into the Corps of Civil Administrators in
1966 he was the Secretary General of Martinique from 1967 to 1970. After
this appointment his carreer developed as follows :

h. 1985 - 1986. Commisinner of the Republic of the Region Haute-
Normandie and of the Department of Seine-Maritime.

j. 1986 - 1989. Prefect of the Region Franche-Conte and of the
Department of Doubs since October 1986.

4. For the first time the OGSE is to be directed by a civilian who will
be the sixth person to occupy this position since May 1981. This appears
to be a clear indication of government concern at excessive militarisation
of the service and irritation at the low morale and inefficiency reigning
at “La Piscine" (local slang for the HQ of the DGSE on Boulevard Mortier).

5. In commentary by the local press to this appointment the following
important factors emerge :

a. Silberzahn is not hostile to the present (Socialist) government.

b. His appointment has been prepared for some time with two persons
particularly involved viz Pierre Joxe, the Minister of the
Interior and Prefect Gilles Ménage, Chef de Cabinet of François
Mitterrand.

c. Silberzahn and Laurent Fabius were apparently not of the same
opinion regarding the Greenpeace affair with Fabius adopting
an extremely "hard line" against the DGSE at the time.

TOTAL P.@1
45510232 45510232 P.O1
1989-03-29 14:55 4551027 5

d. The government need note fear a negative political attitude from
the DGSE in future, they have appointed a loyal supporter at the head of the organisation.
[...]

6. Comment. At first sight it would appear as if the appointment of C laude SILBERZAHN is "bad news" for MID. The support he apparently has from Pierre Joxe , the Marxist Minister of Interior, is particulary significant in thie respect. If Silberzahn is however serious about recreating a sound and effective service, he will have to accept that co-operation with the SADF (MID) is essential. It is therefor too early to determine what long ter effect this appointment will have on our future relations with the French Services (which have recently been excellent) I will plan my first meeting with Claude Silberzahn very carefully and request special support from Geni Thirion and his staff in preparing an up-to-date ”riefing paper (with graphics) of the present military/political situation in Southern Africa for this purpose (in English to be handed ouver on conclusion of the meeting/briefing).
[...]

Top

fgtquery v.1.9, February 9, 2024