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While the campaign in Norway from April to June 1940 was a depressing opening to active hostilities between Britain and Nazi Germany, it led directly to Churchill's war leadership and The Coalition. Both were to prove decisive in the long term.
This well researched work opens with a summary of the issues and personalities in British politics in the 1930s. The consequences of appeasement and failure to re-arm quickly became apparent in April 1940. The Royal Navy, which had been the defence priority, found itself seriously threatened by the Luftwaffe's control of the skies. The economies inflicted on the Army were all too obvious when faced by the Wehrmacht. Losses of men and equipment were serious and salutary.
As the Author describes, the campaign itself was fought in three phases: the landings in support of the Norwegians, the evacuation from Central Norway which led to Chamberlain's resignation and, finally, the campaign in the North which remained credible until the fall of France. At the same time he covers the political background and activity in London and cabinet in-fighting.
The Norway Campaign and the Rise of Churchill 1940, with its informed mix of politics and war fighting, provides a well informed and balanced overview of the opening campaign of the Second World War and its immediate and wider consequences.
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