Ancient history

The Second World War. hitler in paris

Last updated:2022-07-25


As Hitler invaded Poland, France and Great Britain hoped to catch up with Germany (in troops and weapons) to face Hitler on equal terms. But a fortuitous event changed everything. In January 1940, Helmut Reinberger, a German commander, was flying with a friend to Cologne where he had to deliver some secret documents (the plan of the air force to invade Holland and Belgium), but a storm forced them to change course and a problem in the engine made them land on Belgian territory. They were captured before they could destroy the documents and taken to a Belgian military post. The documents detailed the invasion of northern France through Belgium and Holland. Still Belgium remained neutral.


  • Germans:General Von Rundstedt and General Von Bock. General Von Kleist (cavalry) and Panzer Major General Erwin Rommel
  • French:General Maurice Gamelin (chief of the General Staff) and General Georges


On May 10, 1940, the first panzers crossed the Luxembourg border. Operation Sichelschnitt (sickle chop) was launched. The Luftwaffe has several objectives:laying mines in the English Channel, attacking airfields in the Netherlands, Belgium and France, and transporting the German 22nd Airborne Division with some 4,000 paratroopers.

The full fury of the Luftwaffe was directed against Holland, with fighters strafing the streets of The Hague, while the bombers concentrated on the airfields.

In Belgium there was a fortification, Eben Emael, protecting Liège, bristling with cannons and with an infantry battalion. The task of neutralizing it was assigned to a force of volunteer German sappers who reached it in large gliders towed by a Ju 52. In less than 24 hours a small group neutralized it.

In France, General Gamelin gave the order to start the Dyle-Breda plan (he thought that everything was happening as he had imagined). The Luftwaffe was also in charge of monitoring the panzers that crowded the roads of the Ardennes, to prevent any spy plane from observing the concentration of battle tanks (General Von Rundstedt) with a length of 160 km. The allies thought that

These premature German victories motivated the Allies to hasten their arrival at the Dyle River, without suspecting that at that moment Army Group A was crossing the Ardennes and when they left the first ones they would be completely surrounded. At this time the German tanks were stuck in the narrow roads of the Ardennes 160 kilometers from the exit, if the allies had known of the existence of this advance they could have stopped it in its tracks. Churchill is appointed British Prime Minister after Chamberlain's resignation.