WHO: General Gerd von Rundstedt, the commander of Army Group A and Maurice Gamelin, Supreme Commander of the French Army
WHY: After defeating and capturing countries such as Lithuania, Poland, Denmark, and Latvia, Germany then turned its attention to Britain and France. In the case since France was in direct line of fire, it was not surprising they were to be first. Germany wanted to gain more territory while also taking back what was already “there's”.
WHAT: France was gearing up for a defense against the German invasion they knew was coming. Germany has been allowed to push the restrictions placed on them after World War I by an arms buildup, re-militarizing the Rhine, and dominating both Austria and Czechoslovakia. This gives them both an advantage and a sense of superiority because of the lack of opposition. By this time, Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands have already fallen to the Germans in northern Europe and an assault against the northern channel ports was expected to be the next target. In May 1940, French forces supported by the British were concentrated in northern France where they expected the Germans to attack from, just like in WWI, but the Germans instead launched their assault and entered France through the Ardennes where the blitzkrieg was met by little French resistance. The key effect of the blitzkrieg into France was the division of Allied forces which were effectively split in two and backing up the British Expeditionary Force and the French First Army to the English Channel. In the meantime, Italy has also declared war against France. By mid-June, French Premier Paul Reynaud has resigned and the Germans have now captured the city of Paris. There use of the Luftwaffe showed complete air superiority giving the French no chance since they were not only dominating on the ground but in the air also. Outnumbered and outgunned the French quickly succumbed to the Germans.
SIGNIFICANCE: This battle shows the strong and powerful country of France falling within a matter of days. Germany very easily defeated the country with their new found strategy the blitzkrieg. The conquest of France from Germany shifted and shredded the balance of power in Europe. With France out of the equation Britain was the only major problem at the moment that could cause uncertainty for their eventually planned world domination.