The folly that was Maginot, 78 years on.

Built over two decades at the expense of huge portions of the French defense budget, the brainchild of French Minister of War André Maginot– some 5,000 interconnected concrete and steel blockhouses arrayed against Germany– was to provide a huge defensive line for “la Guerre de longue durée” (the war of the long duration) just in case the Germans ever came back.

“Finally the Maginot Line was rolled up. What France considered invincible broke before the might of German arms. In Alsace alone, 500,000 Frenchmen laid down their arms.” Photo Via NY Public Library

Of course, the Germans ran around the wall through the Low Country and Ardennes and the vaunted line was rolled up largely intact after the Battle of France, some 78 years ago today.

Something kinda like this:

The Franco-German Armistice of 22 June 1940 was signed at 18:36 near Compiègne, France, knocking the French ostensibly out of WWII after just nine months of campaigning. Of course, the Vichy regime was non-viable from the start and by November 1942 the Germans went ahead and occupied the whole of metropolitan France as De Gaulle grew in power from London, but that is a whole different story.

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Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as Guns.com, University of Guns, Outdoor Hub, Tac-44, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms Talk.com, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at Amazon.com as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the U.S. federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

2 responses to “The folly that was Maginot, 78 years on.”

  1. Fergus says :

    Nonsense. The Germans had to go round the line rather than assault it. It did everything it promised it could and would do. The fatal flaws were French strategic planning; inability to learn from the lessons of WW1; a failure to adept to a changing world.

    The Germans did not and defeated a numerically superior enemy in a breath taking 6 week campaign. The world will probably never see such a victory again, remember the French army was considered the best in Europe and actually had more tabnks than the Germans.

  2. brightdark says :


    https://polldaddy.com/js/rating/rating.jsHad the French and British not fallen for the bait the Germans laid with the invasion of Holland and advanced into Belgium the Germans might not have pulled it off. IIRC the French had had strong forces at Sedan up until a couple of days before the Germans appeared.

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