Acknowledgements; Introduction; 1. The making of a republican general; 2. Gamelin and the rebirth of German power; 3. First responses: defence versus detente in the Laval era; 4. The Popular Front, the army and politics; 5. The road to rearmament: Gamelin, Daladier and Popular Front defence policy; 6. Gamelin and air support of the army; 7. Gamelin, the Maginot Line and Belgium; 8. Gamelin, Yugoslavia and the eastern alliances: assets or embarrassments?; 9. Men or material? Gamelin and British support for France; 10. Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Soviet Union: from appeasement to war; 11. Gamelin and the fall of Poland; 12. The Twilight War: military stagnation and political conflict; Conclusion; Appendices; Notes; Bibliography; Index.
The first full-length study in English of 'the man who lost the Battle of France'.
' ... immensely thorough, dispassionate and well written ... This impressive volume, developing the themes of previous revisionist interpretations, throws new light on pre-1939 French politics and strategy and shows that Gamelin deserves considerable credit for the degree of preparedness and civil-military co-operation that was achieved.' The Times Literary Supplement 'Martin has set himself the difficult task of salvaging Gamelin's reputation, and he marshals vast scholarship and admirable clarity of exposition to that end, making a major contribution to the grim history of appeasement and rearmament.' The Observer 'Martin Alexander's book will long be a landmark in the political and military history of the 1930s.' European History Quarterly