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 After the landings on the Normandy beaches on June 6th , 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 Introduction Since the s, memory studies have become a popular field regrouping specialists of increasingly diverse intellectual expertise.
Battle of Somme SLC 09 February 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.
Even though the German army was superior to the French in many ways the Fall of France was not inevitable. French military tactics were extremely outdated at the start of the war. They had failed to recognize that warfare had fundamentally changed since the First World War. They were over-reliant upon the Maginot Line, and they believed that this would stop any German invasion in its track. Since they did not believe that could defeat Germany outright, they hoped that the Maginot would drive up casualties and Germany to the negotiating table.
They relied on defensive tactics and failed to grasp the impact of modern tanks and aircraft. The over-reliance on the Maginot Line meant that they were too defensive. The Maginot Line also failed to protect the entire French border.
Instead of attacking France directly, Germany avoided the Maginot line by invading Belgium. French military planners have failed to plan for this contingency. The defensive line only partially defended France and indeed left the country open to an invasion via Belgium. The French army simply hid behind the Maginot Line and waited for the Germans to attack. When the Germans finally did attack through the Ardennes, the French army was trapped in bunkers, and its fortifications were immediately outflanked.
Even when the Germans invaded Belgium, the French General Staff continued with their cautious policy and were slow to respond to the German threat. It was still based on the idea that the next war would resemble the Great War. As a result, the French did not believe that any war with Germany, would be a mobile one, but rather a war of attrition. This meant that they failed to develop tank tactics that took advantage of their tanks offensive capabilities.
The Somua S35 tanks did not realize their true potential until German commanders commandeered them and utilized on the Eastern Front. During the invasion, German Panzer tanks quickly overcame the French defenses on the plains of Northern France. The French air forces were also no match for the Germans in aerial combat.
The French army was unable to cope with the German Blitzkrieg tactics and was quickly defeated after only six weeks of fighting. A veteran and war hero of the First World War, he was credited with developing the strategy that led to the decisive French victory at the Marne in He had also tried unsuccessfully, to modernize the army.
They were slow to respond to the Germans, and there was a marked reluctance to take any initiative and go on the attack. The political leadership of France was also very poor. According to one French commentator during the war, they could not inspire the French people, they were more interested in fighting among themselves that the Germans.
This lack of unity in France was crippling at a crucial juncture in the war. The division also extended to the relationships between the military and political leadership of France. To Churchill at that time, France's army seemed a powerful bulwark against possible Nazi aggression towards other European nations. The defeat of this powerful army in a mere six weeks in stands as one of the most remarkable military campaigns in history.
In , as World War Two loomed, the British and French planned to fight an updated version of what happened in during World War One, but with some essential differences. The French had suffered massive casualties in frontal attacks in This time they were going to remain on the defensive in western Europe, while mobilising their military forces and industrial base to fight a total war.
They planned to take the offensive some two to three years after the start of hostilities. The 'Maginot Line' replaced the crude trenches in which so much of the war was fought. It consisted of a sophisticated series of fortifications, which were confidently expected to protect France's frontier with Germany, although crucially the line did not cover the Franco-Belgian frontier. In general, the slow-tempo, attritional fighting of World War One heavily influenced French military doctrine at the outbreak of World War Two.
Top Hitler's plan Hitler was eager to follow up his victory over Poland in by attacking in the west, but bad weather forced the planned offensive to be postponed. Then, in January , a German plane crashed in neutral Belgium, with a copy of the attack orders on board. Hitler was forced to rethink, believing the plan compromised he turned for advice to General Erich von Manstein, who argued for a daring campaign.
In effect, Manstein recognised that the Maginot Line was too formidable for a direct attack from Germany. Instead, he proposed a subsidiary attack through neutral Holland and Belgium, with the main blow against France to be launched a little later through the Ardennes.
This was a hilly and heavily forested area on the German-Belgian-French border, where the Allies would be unlikely to expect an attack. The plan was to rely heavily on surprise blitzkrieg 'lightning war' techniques. Contrary to a generally held belief, the Germans had fewer tanks than the Allies Contrary to a generally held belief, the Germans had fewer tanks than the Allies 2, against 3, at this point. However, the tanks were concentrated into Panzer armoured formations.
The French had some equivalent formations that were of good quality, but they were dispersed rather than concentrated in the German fashion. Manstein's plan envisaged these Panzer divisions in a semi-independent role, striking ahead of the main body of the army, to disrupt and disorientate the Allies.
This was a very risky plan - much more ambitious than the strategy used in Poland - and was opposed by the more conservative-minded generals. Hitler, however, although not without some misgivings, gave his approval.
Top Start of the attack The attack began on 10 May , with German air raids on Belgium and Holland, followed by parachute drops and attacks by ground forces.
This defensive line was named after a French Defence Minister. Although the initial stages went reasonably well, a French force advancing towards Breda, in Holland, was pushed back.
Top Start of the attack The attack began on 10 May , with German air raids on Belgium and Holland, followed by parachute drops and attacks by ground forces. Still, France took no chances and began to prepare their defenses. During the invasion, German Panzer tanks quickly overcame the French defenses on the plains of Northern France. The British army was left isolated in Belgium and the French were left to bear the brunt of the German forces. It was still based on the idea that the next war would resemble the Great War.
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. 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 France and Belgium did reinforce the fortifications in this region because they assumed that the terrain was unsuitable for tanks. Hitler, however, although not without some misgivings, gave his approval. They began to race towards the Channel coast, aided by the German aircraft that ruled the skies.
During the Versailles treaty negotiations after the collapse of Germany during World War, French negotiators were adamant Germany's military had to be neutralized.
Allied high command seemed paralysed. French military planners have failed to plan for this contingency. Manstein's plan envisaged these Panzer divisions in a semi-independent role, striking ahead of the main body of the army, to disrupt and disorientate the Allies. As a result, the French did not believe that any war with Germany, would be a mobile one, but rather a war of attrition. Contrary to a generally held belief, the Germans had fewer tanks than the Allies