Hugues Le Gallais is one of the great absentees in recent works on Luxembourg history. Born into the Luxembourg bourgeoisie, he began his career as a representative of Arbed abroad and then entered the diplomatic service. From 1940 to 1958, he represented Luxembourg’s interests in Washington, a diplomatic post of key importance for Luxembourg, especially during the Second World War. During the four years in which the Grand Duchy was occupied by the German invaders, he pleaded its cause with verve and skill and worked successfully to bring Grand Duchess Charlotte and her ministers to America. His mission there could be summarized in the phrase “put Luxembourg on the map.” Using largely unpublished sources, Paul Schmit retraces in detail the life of this colorful figure.
Paul Schmit studied law at the University of Strasbourg and political science at Paris 2 University. After his studies, he joined the Luxembourg civil service, firstly in the Ministry of Defense (1991-1992), then in the Foreign Ministry, where he has served since 1992. He has completed several foreign missions, including in Brussels (Permanent Representations to NATO and to the European Union), Washington and Lisbon. Since 2020 he has been Ambassador of Luxembourg to Poland.
Paul Schmit is the author of the book Un diplomate luxembourgeois hors pair. L’ambassadeur Hugues Le Gallais dans la tourmente de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, which was published in French in 2019 by Editions Saint-Paul, Luxembourg and then in 2020 as an e-book by Editions Schortgen (available also on Amazon and Apple) and finally in 2021 in English by Editions Schortgen.