Douglas Johnson

  • The Battle of France: Six weeks which changed the world by Philip Warner
    Simon and Schuster, 275 pp, £16.00, April 1990, ISBN 0 671 71030 3
  • The Last War between Britain and France 1940-1942 by Warren Tute
    Collins, 334 pp, £16.00, January 1990, ISBN 0 00 215318 1
  • Darlan by Hervé Coutau-Bégarie and Claude Huan
    Fayard, 873 pp, frs 190.00, May 1989, ISBN 2 213 02271 2

During those days when the war in Western Europe had not yet got under way, so that it was called ‘the phoney war’, the drôle de guerre or the twilight war, an English journalist, with Labour sympathies, visited a number of French factories. He subsequently called on the minister responsible for industrial production, and posed the question of whether or not French workers were being obliged to work unjustifiably long hours. The minister replied: ‘If only there were a few more British soldiers in France, we could send more of our men back to the factories and the work load could be reduced.’

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