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Nonfiction: History
Unabridged   13.5 hour(s)
Publication date: 09/06/2016


Myth, Reality, and Hitler's Lightning War: France 1940

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Audio CD ISBN:9781681683065
Digital Download ISBN:9781681683072


In Blitzkrieg, military historian Lloyd Clark argues our understanding of blitzkrieg is based on myth.

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Product Description

In the spring of 1940, the Germans launched a military offensive in France and the Low Countries that married superb intelligence, the latest military thinking, and new technology. It was a stunning victory, altering the balance of power in Europe in one stroke, and convincing the entire world that the Nazi war machine was unstoppable.

But as Lloyd Clark, a leading British military historian and academic, argues much of our understanding of this victory, and blitzkrieg itself, is based on myth. Far from being a foregone conclusion, Hitler’s plan could easily have failed had the Allies been even slightly less inept or the Germans less fortunate. The Germans recognized that success depended not only on surprise, but on avoiding being drawn into a protracted struggle for which they were not prepared. And while speed was essential, 90% of Germany’s ground forces were still reliant on horses, bicycles, and their own feet for transportation. There was a real fear of defeat. Their surprise victory proved the apex of their achievement; far from being undefeatable, the France 1940 campaign revealed Germany and its armed forces to be highly vulnerable.


"Quite compelling. . . . a good battlefield view of a crucial phase of World War II, the German invasion of France in 1940, that Americans often neglect because it preceded by 18 months the United States’ entry into the war." —New York Times

Author Bio

Lloyd Clark is one of the UK's leading military historians. He is a professor of modern war studies and contemporary military history at University of Buckingham, a fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and a member of the British Commission for Military History. Lloyd is the author of several books.