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Bob Denard
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Military Personnel
    (April 7, 1929-October 13, 2007)
    Born in Bordeaux, France
    Birth name was Gilbert Bourgeaud
    Participated in coups and military action in Zaire, Zimbabwe, Yemen, Nigeria, Iran, Benin, Gabon, Angola and the Comoros
    Actions often had the unofficial support of France
    He was discharged from the French marines after burning down a restaurant in Indochina while drunk (1952).
    While a member of the colonial police in Morocco, he was convicted of plotting to assassinate French prime minister Pierre Mendes-France (1954).
    He overthrew the government of the Comoros four times, and was the de facto ruler for eleven years (1978-89).
    He converted to Islam and polygamously married seven women.
    His mercenaries were nicknamed 'les affreux' -- 'the horrible ones.'
    He protested being called a mercenary, saying it was a 'pejorative' term.
    As a teenager, he served with the French Resistance in World War II.
    He was a fervent anti-Communist.
    He was admired by the men who served under him.

Credit: C. Fishel

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