Divided and Conquered/Jeffery S. Gunsburg


The French High Command and the Defeat of the West,1940

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This is a very good book on the French defeat of May, 1940. It first discusses the political and military backgrounds to the ensuing disaster in Chapters 1 – 7. Chapters 8 and 9 describe in detail the German attacks into Holland and northern Belgium and then through the Ardennes starting in May of 1940 and the French efforts to counter them. Chapter 10 “Epilogue and Conclusions” then critiques “what went wrong.” There were a variety of reasons.

Probably the greatest issue was the overall demographic and economic superiority of Germany: in 1940 Germany had double the population and three times the level of industrialization of France. The only way France could hope to resist a German attack was with a firm political and military alliance with Britain, Belgium, and the Netherlands – sort of a 1930s version of NATO. It never happened. Secondly, Germany possessed a much more refined concept of air – land warfare at all three levels: strategic, operational, and tactical that dominates military thinking to this day. Thirdly was the persistent irresolution among the French, British, and Belgian military leaders. They simply could not make quick or decisive decisions. And perhaps a major fourth issue in France was the divisions among the French politicians, the military leadership, and the French electorate in general.

Approximate size of book and weight. All books with be shipped Media Mail, but
we still need to know if it is oversized or extremely heavy.
Dimensions: ‎ 6.14 x 0.75 x 9.21 inches Weight: 1.35 pounds

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