France 1940: Blitzkrieg in the West - Praeger Illustrated Military History S. (Hardback)
  • France 1940: Blitzkrieg in the West - Praeger Illustrated Military History S. (Hardback)

France 1940: Blitzkrieg in the West - Praeger Illustrated Military History S. (Hardback)

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Hardback Published: 09/02/2004
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The German victory of 1940 stunned the world. France, thought to be a major European power with one of the world's largest armies, collapsed in less than seven weeks. The secret of the Wehrmacht's success lay in its revolutionary new tactics of blitzkrieg: lightning war. Fast-moving tank divisions supported by armored, mobile infantry swept over opposition, helped by both conventional bombers and deadly Stuka dive-bombers. Alan Shepperd's highly detailed text examines the tactics, organization, and equipment of the Allied and German forces, and provides a daily account of the most crucial period of the battle. "The tank marks as great a revolution in land warfare as an armored steamship would have marked had it appeared amongst the toilsome triremes of Actium." So said General Heinz Guderian, architect of the stunning German victory over France in 1940. Alan Shepperd examines tactics and the German's application of them to their 1940 French campaign, as he looks at the differing organization and equipment of both Allied and German forces. He gives a daily account of the most crucial period of the battle, that of May 10-17, and also examines the evacuation of Dunkirk, in which 337,000 troops, mostly British, were taken out of the Germans' clutches at the last moment by the Royal Navy supported by a vast armada of privately owned vessels. Not only are German strengths looked at but Allied weaknesses are also examined: their ineffective use of tanks, the obsolete French defensive strategy, and, possibly most importantly, the political splits within France that demoralized her army and combined with the German's speedy advance to bring collapse about so quickly.

Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 9780275982799

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