This work is a result of doctoral research in military history, done at the University of Brasilia, with support from CNPq and CAPES. The research was primarily developed in primary sources, mainly in the French archives: Château de Vincennes and Ministère des Affaires Étrangères. In the inter-war period, which was a moment of idealism in Europe, two of the main countries involved in world conflict – France and Germany, fought fierce competition for consumer markets of Latin America. The main purpose of these countries was the sale of obsolete war material, the remains of the First World War.
The weapons trade was favoured by sending military missions to the Latin countries. Military missions also exported the language and culture of the countries of origin, according to the German and French foreign policy of cultural imperialism. While the Latin armed forces were formed by warlords used to intervene in local politics, Europeans thought on national defense and security.
In this way, the Latin America had geostrategic importance for European countries from 1920 to 1940, because they needed urgently to export their military products and disseminate their culture. The Latin countries, especially Brazil, have become the scene of disputes and espionage by the action of military attachés and other diplomatic representatives who took care of immigrants and the approach of the federal Government concerning international policy issues.
The French military mission (1920-1940) requested by Brazilian Army was a landmark in the military history of Brazil: the instruction and the officers training have changed military doctrine, reorganized structures, created military school improvements and reequipped ground force. Analysing the influence of French military in Brazil is essential to understand the Brazilian military though and the political paths into the “Estado Novo”.
That’s the theme of the article Relação França-Brasil: o legado da Missão Militar Francesa (1920-1940) para o Exército Brasileiro, published in the volume 17 of Meridiano 47, Journal of Global Studies.