The Battle of France Essay

The Battle of France Essay

Length: 2520 words (7.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Research Papers

Open Document

Essay Preview

1. Introduction
2. History
3. Planning/Preparation
4. Execution/Action
5. Lessons Learned
6. Works Cited


In the spring of 1940 Europe was enveloped in war. The German military machine had already conquered Poland, Denmark, and Norway. However, not content with northern and eastern expansion, Adolf Hitler wanted to control the western countries in Europe. Hitler had long been obsessed with attacking and controlling France. After their defeat in World War I, the German people, government, and military were humiliated by the enormous post war sanctions leveraged against them from the Treaty of Versailles. Hitler wanted to defeat and humiliate the French people in the same way that his country had to experience. For him, revenge was necessary. The German plan was to swing into France using a new tactic know as Blitzkrieg or “Lightning War”. Blitzkrieg used speed and surprise along with highly concentrated tank corps, supported by mechanized infantry and airplanes.
Warfare was in a state of transition. Older commanders and generals in the French and British militaries were very cavalry and infantry focused. These commanders believed that cavalry, infantry, and artillery would assure victory in any circumstance, against any foe. They clung to the static tactics of the bygone World War I era. World War I had been fought primarily on French soil, and the military as well as the government never wanted that to happen again, therefore they wanted to reinforce their main border against any future German. Little did they know that only twenty two years later they would be bested by German forces in a way that would shock the world. This research will be analyzing many important assumptions, oversights,...

... middle of paper ...

... many French commanders not even knowing where their own subordinate units were located.11 The French placed their defense in old, outdated tactics of static warfare. Gone were the days of two sides slugging it out against prepared reinforced defense structures. Closely integrating concentrated armor, infantry, and closely supported by aviation assets all combined to crush France in a matter of only six weeks. France was simply not prepared for this new age of warfare.

Works Cited

Horne, Alistair. To Lose a Battle: France 1940. New York: Penguin, 1990.

Jackson, Julian. The Fall of France: The Nazi Invasion of 1940. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. “The Holocaust.” Holocaust Encyclopedia, last modified June 10, 2013,

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Battle of King Philip II Augustus of France Essay

- King Philip II Augustus of France wasn’t by any means a physically strong individual, but his strengths lay in his grasp of both political and military strategy. He was almost constantly involved in wars from 1180 to 1215. He was fighting his vassals, other kings, both of them together, it didn’t matter; Philip would use political treachery and military tactics to defeat his opponents. When one looks at Philip’s life they notice almost instantly that Philip was constantly fighting someone from the day he became King, to the day he died....   [tags: Ancient History France]

Research Papers
1954 words (5.6 pages)

Joan of Arc and the Siege of Orleans Essay

- ... The next major battle, the Battle of La Rochelle, occurs 16 years later, and France regains control of the English Channel in a fierce naval battle. After that victory, France gave Scotland arms to attack England, but Scotland signs a truce with England to prevent further French agitation in the North. A few years later, Henry V landed in France with ten thousand men and besieged Harfleur, a port town along the French coast. The siege lasted for a month, and Henry marched into the town, victorious, with very few men, because most of them died from disease....   [tags: france and england war, battle]

Research Papers
1264 words (3.6 pages)

Europe : Revenge, Humiliation And Preparation Essay example

- 1940 Europe: Revenge, Humiliation and Preparation “By the summer of 1940, it may truly be said: The Germans gloried in their revenge, the French wept in their humiliation, and the British gathered their courage…” Battle of France Although the French had spent a fortune to build-up their defenses, the French leadership made many errors that ultimately led to their humiliating defeat. The French were quite negligent, starting with their timid reaction to Germany 's attack on Poland. In the end, French committed many blunders which contributed to their quick defeat....   [tags: World War II, World War I, Battle of France]

Research Papers
863 words (2.5 pages)

The Battle of Waterloo Essay

- ... At approximately eleven in the morning, the first phase of attacks occurred at Hougoumont in an attempt to be a diversion and draw forces from the Duke of Wellington's center near Papelotte. This attack was unsuccessful and turn into a “territorial struggle” for the remainder of the day.3 The second phase consisted of French Commander d'Erlon's infantry attacking an unweakened center. D'Erlon's was initially successful, but eventually driven off by British General Picton's cavalry. The third phase began at approximately four in the afternoon, and was led by French Commander Ney....   [tags: napoleon, france, military history]

Research Papers
1749 words (5 pages)

The Battle of Normandy Essay

- The Battle of Normandy The Battle of Normandy was key to Allied success in France. After the landings on the Normandy beaches on June 6th 1944, the Allies faced the major issue of moving off the beaches and into the heartland of Normandy and from Normandy to Paris. With D-Day, the Allies had the element of surprise but once the landings had occurred, this had been lost. The Germans now knew for sure where the Allies would make their push inland and it was not to be in the Pays de Calais. The deception before D-Day had worked extremely well but post June 6th, German army commanders knew where to concentrate their forces....   [tags: france, allied forces, world war II]

Research Papers
734 words (2.1 pages)

A Brief Note On Memory : A Battle For Meaning Essay

- Historicizing Memory: A battle for meaning I. Introduction Since the 1990s, memory studies have become a popular field regrouping specialists of increasingly diverse intellectual expertise. German scholar Aleida Assmann posits that this investment in studying memory can be explained by various factors such as the legacies of great tragedies in the twentieth century (most notably the Holocaust), the fall of “grand narratives” (hastened by the end of the Cold War and the democratisation of former Communist states in Eastern Europe) and by the digital revolution which has challenged previous ways of communication and sharing information....   [tags: Meaning of life, Sociology, Vichy France, Memory]

Research Papers
2010 words (5.7 pages)

A Short Note On The Battle Of Somme Essay

- SSG Bolden, Gene L. SSG Joiner, Stanley V. SSG Tilley, Christopher R, SSG White, Kenta D. Battle of Somme SLC 001-016 09 February 2016 While looking for battles that involved Field Artillery there were many that came to mind however, we went off the beaten path and chose one that showed how if you depend on one element too much it can hinder your overall combat power. In this paper, we will show how the battle plan for the Battle of Somme relied too much on artillery and costs the lives of too many young men....   [tags: World War I, Trench warfare, Battle of the Somme]

Research Papers
1058 words (3 pages)

Air Campaign Waged by Germany in The Battle of Britain Essay

- ... Dowding decided to take a conservative and preventative approach to the conflict. Dowding also acknowledged that he was fighting a defensive war which made it easier for his men to return to the front line opposed to a German soldier who would captured and imprisoned. Fighting on friendly territory made the entire battle much easier for the RAF. Dowding was consistently trying to improve his command and create a powerful Air Force which he eventually did by creating what became known as the Dowding System....   [tags: hitler, defense, battle]

Research Papers
2582 words (7.4 pages)

Essay about The Battle of the Bulge

- The Battle of the Bulge The post D-Day Allied assault that swept through France was halted by Hitler’s unexpected counter-attack through the Ardennes, resulting in a confrontation named the Battle of the Bulge. The Allied battle front in the autumn of 1944 made an end to the war by Christmas look likely. They had liberated most of France in a matter of months, and were now marching towards the Ruhr River, which was the gateway to the heartland of Germany. However, the Allies had moved so far so fast that their supply lines had not caught up with them....   [tags: Battle Bulge War History Historical Essays]

Research Papers
1838 words (5.3 pages)

Essay about France

- France Country Profile An Overview France, formally called the French Republic, has played a major role in Western Europe history. It has been a consistent power for centuries. It was one of the original countries of the European Union, and has been a dominant factor in global trade. France has also been a driving force in the Common Market (CM), the European Economic Community (EEC), now called the European Union (EU), and is a permanent member of the United Nations. Historical Background France was established under a feudal system, first recorded in 843 with the crowning of Charles the Bald; France’s first King....   [tags: French History, Global Market Place]

Research Papers
807 words (2.3 pages)