France's Defeat In Ww2 Essay

1161 words - 5 pages

Some events in history are left unanswered. Historians tend to solve these mysteries by asking what if questions. The problem is finding the best scenario. In the end many theories are developed, but that leads to the discussion of which theory or theories is the best explanation. Could one man and his decisions have been the cause? Perhaps an additional alliance with a country may have resulted in a different outcome in the War? France fell behind economically after the First World War, and some say weren't ready for another costly war. France's reputation of being one of the most powerful countries was diminished with her fall to the Germans in the beginning of the 2nd World War. France's great defeat originated from the inept ability of the French government to form an alliance with the Russian-Soviets, which consequently led to poor strategic planning with the early allies. France began its defensive strategy in 1930 with the construction of the Maginot Line. Complete construction was finished in 1939 with an estimated cost of 240 million dollars, approximately twice the amount that was originally estimated.(Kaufmann, The Maginot Line, page 7) The line consisted of fortifications along the eastern border of France between Switzerland and Belgium. With this stretch of land, military leaders needed to devise a plan that would be most effective in dispersing their French and allied soldiers. Further planning needed to be made concerning the cooperation of Allied forces. Theres no doubt France needed the help from other countries, but actions made by some countries had France biting the bullet on its own. Russia's role in World War I was imperative to the French victory. Soviet Russia was effective in averting some of Germany's attention from the west. The years following Word War I, international relations between France and its allies toward Russia were thinning. Russia was struck with a revolution and a Civil War. Many countries saw a chance for independence, Poland being one of them. Poland gained its independence and went about creating its borders. Poland was not left alone for long. A revolution to spread worldwide communism was right at Poland's doorstep. The Red Army needed to invade Poland in order to establish communist communities in Western Europe. The fight began and the Polish Army was forced westward. An unexpected victory by Poland pushed Soviet forces eastward out of Poland. A peace treaty was later signed to divide the territories (Dreifort, The Franco-Soviet Pact.) The Polish-Russian War deterred any alliance between Western Europe and Russia in the future for some years.In the mid 1930's a high priority for France was to develop a positive agreement with Russia. World War I emphasized to France the importance of a Soviet ally, and was willing to reestablish a relationship. A non-aggression pact between France and Russia seemed only beneficial if Poland and Romania, already allies with France, sign the pact as...

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