Anglo-French Defence Relations between the Wars by M. Alexander, W. Philpott

By M. Alexander, W. Philpott

This choice of essays reports the politico-military dating among Britain and France among the 2 international Wars. in addition to studying the connection among the 2 international locations' armed companies, the book's individuals additionally examine key issues in Anglo-French inter-war defence politics - disarmament, intelligence and imperial defence - and joint army, political and fiscal arrangements for a moment global struggle.

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Cf. R. J. Young, In Command of France: French Foreign Policy and Military Planning, 1933–1939 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1978), pp. 218–19. Excellent on the air war in 1940 is P. Facon, L’Armée de l’Air dans la tourmente: La bataille de France, 1939–1940 (Paris: Economica, 1997); see also J. A. Gunsburg, ‘Armée de l’Air versus Luftwaffe in 1940’, Defence Update International, 45 (1984), pp. 44–53. A point that Gen. Sir James Marshall-Cornwall affirmed when interviewed at his home at Malton, North Yorkshire, by Martin Alexander, in August 1978.

Divergences over policy were to have their worst consequences in the operations that followed the surrender and subsequent collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Early policy differences arose following initial British opposition to a French mandate for Syria, although these have relevance to naval relations only in so far as the context, the soured atmosphere created by the Syrian differences, heightened the resentments and bitterness over policies towards the Turkish heartland. Behind both the Syrian and Turkish mainland issues was the British wish, both for strategic reasons and to safeguard oil supplies, to secure a hegemony in the Middle East, and a French desire, for reasons both of national prestige and national interest, not to allow Britain to have matters all her own way.

In the field it produced, in early September 1922, a crisis at Smyrna. British, American and French battleships and other vessels had to evacuate foreigners – Greeks and Armenians in the case of the British and Americans, and French and French-protected personnel in the case of the French – while the victorious nationalist forces entered, looted and burnt the city, massacring in an orgy of ethnic cleansing those who could not escape. A second and final crisis occurred further north later in the same month.

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