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11 November 1918. The incomplete victory…France thought it had won the war; it had only won a fragile peace.
This dramatic assessment is the departure point of the long Way of the Cross which inexorably led the country towards its conclusion in 1940; all along the stations of this Cross, France, in total contradiction with it foreign and defence policies, went from disillusion to resignation, without ever realizing that she didn’t have, or hadn’t given herself, the wherewithal of her ambitions.
The disappointment with the Versailles Treaty, the arrogance of the period of the Rhineland occupation, the illusion of the Locarno Pact, the choice of going on the defensive although she had offered guarantees to several countries with whom she had no common border, her passivity when faced with the rise of German power, the lack of reaction to Belgian neutrality, the renouncement at Munich; all that could only lead to war, a badly prepared and badly organised entry into war.
When on 10 May 1940 Germany launched its operations in the West, the French Army piled on the mistakes, magnifying the German success in spite of herself. Caught in the whirlwind of the lightning German breakthrough, her command didn’t have the opportunity at any moment to alter the course of events and the calamitous disasters followed each other like a Greek tragedy.
After forty-five days of fighting during which heroism competed with cowardice, and courage with weakness, France reached the end of it Calvary. This book analyses the causes of this inexorable defeat, from the most obvious to the least evident, point by point.
|Format||21 x 27,5 cm|
|nombre de pages||400|
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