The Fall of France: The Nazi Invasion of 1940

Julian T. Jackson

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The Fall of France: The Nazi Invasion of 1940

The Fall of France The Nazi Invasion of The Fall of France in is one of the pivotal moments of the twentieth century If the German invasion of France had failed it is arguable that the war might have ended right there But the French s

  • Title: The Fall of France: The Nazi Invasion of 1940
  • Author: Julian T. Jackson
  • ISBN: 9780192805508
  • Page: 420
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Fall of France in 1940 is one of the pivotal moments of the twentieth century If the German invasion of France had failed, it is arguable that the war might have ended right there But the French suffered instead a dramatic and humiliating defeat, a loss that ultimately drew the whole world into war This exciting new book by Julian Jackson, a leading historian of tweThe Fall of France in 1940 is one of the pivotal moments of the twentieth century If the German invasion of France had failed, it is arguable that the war might have ended right there But the French suffered instead a dramatic and humiliating defeat, a loss that ultimately drew the whole world into war This exciting new book by Julian Jackson, a leading historian of twentieth century France, charts the breathtakingly rapid events that led to the defeat and surrender of one of the greatest bastions of the Western Allies Using eyewitness accounts, memoirs, and diaries to bring the story to life, Jackson not only recreates the intense atmosphere of the six weeks in May and June leading up to the establishment of the Vichy regime, but he also unravels the historical evidence to produce a fresh answer to the perennial question was the fall of France inevitable Jackson s vivid narrative explores the errors of France s military leaders, her inability to create stronger alliances, the political infighting, the lack of morale, even the decadence of the inter war years He debunks the vast superiority of the German army, revealing that the experienced French troops did well in battle against the Germans Perhaps than anything else, the cause of the defeat was the failure of the French to pinpoint where the main thrust of the German army would come, a failure that led them to put their best soldiers up against a feint, while their worst troops faced the heart of the German war machine An engaging and authoritative narrative, The Fall of France illuminates six weeks that changed the course of twentieth century history.

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    One thought on “The Fall of France: The Nazi Invasion of 1940

    1. Loraine on said:

      I must admit that I struggled with the first 100 pages finding it very dense and dry but, recognizing that it was necessary ground to cover, I slogged through it. It got easier after that and by the last 100 pages, I could not get enough. I found it to be only as judgmental as was necessary in context and always balanced. This was a book I needed to read as I had serious questions after reading Antony Beevor’s “Second World War”. I especially liked the discussion of other books on the subj [...]

    2. Gram on said:

      A fine attempt by historian Julian Jackson to explain the failure of France's politicians and military in the years leading up to and during Nazi Germany's invasion and the subsequent collapse of the French army in 1940. Jackson is a leading authority on 20th Century France and - in less than 300 pages - manages to gives the reader a fascinating insight into the machinations of French politicians and military leaders, desperately trying to form alliances throughout Europe while trying to avoid a [...]

    3. Sue Law on said:

      An interesting analysis of the fall of France in 1940. Jackson starts with 3 sections looking at the military, the politics and ordinary French people from 1930 to 1940. He then looks at some of the proposed explanations to see how they fit with the history (hint: most of them don't) and provides his own conclusion. The last section looks at the longer term consequences of the fall, both for the development of WWII and for the post-war world.

    4. Carl on said:

      An excellent study of the political, social, industrial, and military reasons for the collapse of France in 1940, only let down - in my humble opinion - by the latter chapters detailing post-war France.

    5. R.M.F Brown on said:

      It's always been assumed that Nazi Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, was the pivotal moment of World War Two. Considering the losses in men, material, and prestige, suffered by the Wehrmacht, it's hard to argue against thatAnd yet, Jackson does just that. For Jackson, the pivotal moment of WW2 is not June 1941, but the fall of France in 1940. Widely considered to have the world's most powerful army, the defeat of France changed forever the strategic balance, transforming a European [...]

    6. Dale on said:

      Not a detailed narrative of the Battle of France, but rather an analysis of one of the most shocking events of the 20th Century: the collapse and surrender of France after six weeks of combat in 1940.As makes sense of such a complex event, there is no single cause, but Jackson boils it down to a few problems:1. France was unprepared. Though war had been declared almost nine months previously, the French military and government estimated that the Republic would not be ready for sustained military [...]

    7. Chris Oler on said:

      Read this about ten years ago and there are several excellent reviews. Was the French army that bad, or were the Germans that good? The answer to both questions is "no." Particular attention is paid here to the political environment in France between the wars. 'Toxic' is not an overstatement and you need only see political cartoons of the era for evidence. France also suffered from a dearth of military leaders ready to take initiative. Professor Jackson points out the vulnerability of the German [...]

    8. Jur on said:

      Great book, covering the historiography of the French defeat in 1940 and the various explanations given for it. Military: Jackson shows that the strategic plan and response of the French High Command were deeply flawed, but that many units gave good account of themselves.Anglo-French Alliance: Very warm in 1940, but quickly deteriorated under the stress of defeatFrench defeatism: overrated. Mostly an immediate excuse for the failings of generals which served the Vichy governments retrenchment of [...]

    9. Jonathan on said:

      Why did France collapse in 1940? How is it that what many considered the best army in the world folded up under German attack, whereas in 1914 they had managed to hold and eventually defeat their ancient enemies? And it's not like they didn't fight: their casualty figures prove that. While this question has been examined before, Professor Jackson takes a fresh look at the issue, probing the military, political, diplomatic and social aspects of what happened that terrible summer. He also delves i [...]

    10. Liam on said:

      The fall of France in 1940 was one of the turning points of the 20th century. Jackson goes to some length to explain the result this military defeat, a defeat that was not inevitable, had on the postwar French view of the "decadent thirties" The understandable preference for studies of the resistance rather than the defeat.

    11. Craig on said:

      Detailed look at the Battle of France in May and June of 1940 and specifically France's failures as a nation to prepare for the German assault. Does a nice job of looking at the political and cultural challenges facing France between the wars but really excels in the military nuts and bolts of the French disastrous campaign against the Germans.

    12. Mark on said:

      A high level of detail about the various "causes" of the French defeat. A rather dense read, however.

    13. Anthony Giacalone on said:

      Capable handling of the 1940 Western campaign but then sort of wanders off during the final third of the book. Overall good stuff though.

    14. Renee on said:

      Awful, the translation were wrong so what else is wrong in this book.

    15. Chris on said:

      What caused it? Poor strategy and organization were big reasons, especially at the beginning — but it could easily have gone the other way. There was no time to recoup, as in 1914.

    16. Philip Kuhn on said:

      Not very good. Book gets bogged down in the minuate of French politics. Doesn't cover the German invasion as much as the title implies.

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