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"Vichy Airforce at War (book review)" Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP05 Apr 2024 4:51 p.m. PST

"irst off I should say I know Jon Sutherland and have communicated with him via Facebook, etc over quite a few years. He is a stalwart member of our wargames community and his figures and games often grace the pages of the glossy magazines for us all to admire and lust after. I should also add that the co-author Diane Canwell is now Diane Sutherland who`s wonderful terrain "how to`s" grace the pages of the glossies, Diane is an amazing modeller.

All this being said regular readers of this blog know I have a somewhat obsessive interest in all things French and have actively studied the conflict between Britain and her former ally (now Vichy France) after the collapse in 1940. So when Jon mentioned his book when commenting on one of my Syria/Lebanon games here, I went straight onto the internet and bought myself a copy…"


Review here



Lilian06 Apr 2024 5:53 a.m. PST

reading only the title « The French Air Force that fought the Allies » shows how the english-speaking world rewrites the History, I thought naively that it was the British who chosen to fight treacherously and opened the fire against the French throughout the war, reversing the roles, I am wrong

by the way a great luck that the dirty capitulators froggies of the French Vichy Air Force in Syria remained only in a defensive posture despite they had superiority in air bombing, without that, the British Palestine would have been carpetbombed by an air raid, they prefered, again, to capitulate, rather than use this offensive option againt their treacherous allies
the British white knights took alibi of the germans planes (that had ceased to fly) to attack but curiously they were not worried by the fact that the same Vichy allowed the British Army to cross Syria-Lebanon to join Jordan, not a word also about British and German collaborated to keep safe the oil industry, nor that Britain Germany Italy all doing everything to expell France from the zone, wether Vichy or Free was totally secondary, not a suprise that both shared same bad impression of ulterior motives behind that confirmed and verified in 1945-1946
or that Vichy begged the Anglo-Americans to allow transit of French troops and planes blocked by them to renforce Indochina against Japanese and Siamese receiving oil and planes by US, despite France had previously bought and paid rubis sur ongles am impressive number of 6000 US planes generously abandonned to Britain by France who was a leap forward for the American aeronautical industry quadrupling the monthly production capacity of American aeronautical factories and contributing to investments and the creation of an American war industry in means of production and quality of products
unfortunately the dirty froggies capitulators of the French Air Force in Indochina didn't even seen the small part of the propeller of one of them bought and paid by their country to their greats allied friends and partners

well the usual double-standard hypocrisy about how is written the WWII History from the english-speaking world and teaching lessons of gratitude and courage and everything to everyone and to the rest of the world including in the forum

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2024 12:11 p.m. PST

That is a very sad series of comments and, for every single one, there is a very different interpretation. I have a great admiration for much of the French war effort, especially just after Dunkirk in 1940, in the Western Desert of North Africa and Italy, that they did scrap the fleet rather than hand it over to Germany and their role after the landings in France in 44.

But there were the shameful episodes e.g. the treatment of shipwrecked sailors on the North African Coast, the shooting down of laden paratroop planes during Torch, the response to de Gaulle's speech of 18th June 40. Britain was spared occupation and never had to face the dilemma of Vichy and Collaboration….but it was not France's finest hour.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP06 Apr 2024 3:26 p.m. PST



R Leonard07 Apr 2024 9:29 p.m. PST

Contre les Alliés Perfides – La Glorieuse Armée de l'Air Française de Vichy

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP08 Apr 2024 3:52 p.m. PST



Personal logo foxbat Supporting Member of TMP09 Apr 2024 3:23 a.m. PST

Whoah, gentlemen, no need to get incensed!

As a Frenchman, and a diehard Gaullist at that wink, I'll say that, though Churchill made an error with Catapult, Mers-el-Kebir and Dakar, these were difficult times and he had no 20/20 hindsight. That was not the only mistake he made throughout the war, but that remains minor compared to his unflinching resolve to see Hitler defeated when appeasers, at home, were raising their heads. My 2 cents…

Oh, and if you can read French, you'll perhaps enjoy reading one of the various uchronias about what could have been had France kept on fighting. Might tempt me to write a naval campaign about that! Cheers!



Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP09 Apr 2024 3:41 p.m. PST

Merci bien mon ami…


Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP13 Apr 2024 8:47 a.m. PST

It is rarely appreciated how much more effective was the resistance of the Regular French armed forces immediately after Dunkirk and this What If? is fascinating. Allied control of the whole North African coast (almost inevitable with only Italy to contest it) and an intact belligerent French fleet would have transformed the Mediterranean conflict.

But it is so often morale, and the will to fight on, that makes the difference. How much more credit then to de Gaulle and the minority who heeded his call. But no one who has never experienced occupation can really sit in judgement.

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP14 Apr 2024 11:47 a.m. PST

I wish Lillian would come back on this.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP14 Apr 2024 3:18 p.m. PST

Me too…


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