Historian Anthony Beevor: After Stalin helped Nazis defeat France, Stalin blamed France for surrendering

In his new book The Second World War, Antony Beevor reports that:

Stalin despised France for its collapse in 1940 which had so upset his plans (page 653).

(T)he surrender of the French army in 1940 had furnished the (Nazi military) with the majority of its vehicles for the invasion of the Soviet Union a year later.

Stalin…said that France “must be punished for its aid to the Germans” (page 512).

The irony is that Stalin’s military alliance with the Nazis from 1939 until 1941 was a direct cause of the 1940 defeat of France.

  • Some of the Nazi weaponry used against France had been developed and tested in the Soviet Union in order to evade the disarmament provisions of the World War I ending Treaty of Versailles.
  • The steel in the Nazis’ vehicles and weapons was manufactured with Soviet manganese.
  • The Nazi vehicles were fueled with Soviet oil.
  • The Nazis troops and draft animals which provided 90% of their transportation were fed with Soviet grain.
  • The Soviet Union ordered the French Communist Party to spread demoralizing antiwar and pacifist propaganda among the French troops and encouraged avoidance of combat and desertion.
  • Members of the French Communist Party on orders from the Soviet Union may have sabotaged French military vehicles or trains transporting troops and supplies.

The Nazi conquest was so swift that they captured many French vehicles intact. One year later they used those captured French vehicles in their attack on their former Soviet ally.

From 1939 until 1941 with aid from their Soviet military ally, not only did the the Nazis defeat France, the Nazis defeated all other anti-Nazi continental European military powers and drove the British Army back across the English Channel.

That is why the Soviet Union was alone on the continent of Europe when their Nazi ally finally turned on them in June of 1941.

During the Cold War he Soviets and their allied Communist Parties around the world, including the American Communist Party, tried to disappear this World War II history down one of George Orwell’s 1984 memory holes.

Anthony Beevor’s The Second World War is among the growing number of recently published books that are now telling a more complete and accurate history.



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