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95

Before answering, just to take issue with the premise of the question. Yes, France received a permanent seat on the Security Council, not to mention her own occupation zones in Germany and Austria. But France was not accorded a status anything like the "Big Three" in most other respects. From May 1943 De Gaulle was operating independently from French ...


75

Defense of German heritage against Romans The biggest reason for how the lands east of the Rhine retained their German identity (unlike the Gauls of modern day France who lost their Celtic identity) is the Battle of Teutoburg Forest where the Germans won a decisive victory against Roman invaders. After this battle, the Romans never seriously attempted to ...


59

The Phoney War (Sitzkrieg, Drôle de Guerre, etc.) seems destined to remain one of the great mysteries of history. It is difficult to comprehend now, after the fact, how such an astonishing combination of missed opportunities, wishful thinking, and indecisiveness on the part of not just one, but two great powers, could have carried on for more than half a ...


57

I'm going to say that England should not be considered as having been a colony of France. From the wiki page for colony a colony is a territory under the immediate political control of a state, distinct from the home territory of the sovereign When William took power he did so on behalf of himself and not on behalf of France, and he ruled as King of ...


51

First because most cities in France are much smaller than cities in the US. Compare a list of French cities by population with the same for the US. There are 11 cities in the US bigger than the 2nd largest in France (Marseille at ~855,000) and 34 bigger than the 3rd largest (Lyon at ~500,000). Second, it does have big Atlantic coastal cities... by French ...


51

Based on this page from the French School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, it appears that the neighbouring Balsesmes merged into La Haye-Descartes in 1966, before the combined commune was renamed to Descartes the next year. In 1962, the two communes had remarkably similar population levels of 1,679 and 1,689. With a combined population of 4,267 ...


48

The sale of Louisiana was a FIRE SALE for France, and specifically, its self-appointed ruler, Napoleon Bonaparte, for these reasons: 1) France had gotten "burned" with her earlier misadventures in North America. The French and Indian war cost her Canada and all of her other possessions on the east bank of the Mississippi. (She had managed to save "Louisiana"...


46

British policy on the continent has traditionally been to maintain the balance of power (this is also really a general European thing). This amounted to shifting alliances all over the continent. Though France and Britain are "traditional" enemies (as neighbours were wont to be in Europe), they certainly hadn't been at war for anywhere near "close to 1000 ...


44

They were not regular construction, but exhibits for the Exposition Universelle (1900), showing different cultures side by side: Each country funded, designed and on occasion constructed their pavilions, carrying the burden of some of the cost of the fair and the also the glory that followed in the praise of their homeland contributions. They were ...


37

The main reason for the status of France after the WW2 was Churchill's position. Soft power and colonies are important, but nothing prevented the US & SU (both with strong anti-colonialist sentiment) from breaking up the French colonial empire. The war contribution of France was mostly in denying Germany the use of the French navy. The rest (resistance, ...


37

The attitude in the early 19 century was somewhat different. No one considered these wars as wars "against France", I mean against the French people. These were the wars against Napoleon, and earlier the wars against the revolutionary government. So there was no notion that "France should be punished". Many French emigres were on the coalition side. It is ...


31

Technically, it's not a flag it's a surcoat. It represents the coats of arms of her family. In heraldic terms, the display of these arms are known as impalement. In this case, the arms on the dexter side (her right) represent the arms of her husband, Edward II (the coat of arms of England) and on the sinister side (her left) those of her family (the coat of ...


30

What you are referring to is commonly known as the "French Column". I suppose it shouldn't be surprising that English movies and the English version of Wikipedia are pretty dismissive of it. After all, that was the opinion of everyone's favorite English General, Wellington. And he was certainly able to back it up. The first thing you have to realize is that ...


30

First of all, Monaco was annexed by revolutionary France and was part of it from 1793 to 1814. Before 1793 and from 1814 to 1860 it was surrounded by lands belonging to the House of Savoy. (So for those specific timeframes, it would be pretty hard for France to annex Monaco without annexing Savoy's lands). Monaco was surrounded by France from 1860 as a ...


30

The answer is a very solid yes although I'd prefer the word Intervene rather than invade. India was one of the key possessions of British and Indian trade was crucial to British economy at that time. As long as British economy was strong, Britain would have been able to field expeditionary forces to thwart French ambitions worldwide. So that's where ...


29

Piecing together various sources, it is clear that there was a no-passport agreement between the United Kingdom and France from 1961 until 1984 and that, even after the termination of this agreement, British citizens were able to use a British Visitor's Passport (in addition to the standard 'full' passport) until 1995. Between 1961 and 1995, the UK issued ...


28

I agree with much of Semaphore's answer, which shows that actually Britain and France were not in a state of perpetual war. But I think your question really relates to "What changed?" so I'll try to answer that. Firstly, the end of the Napoleonic era. The Battle of Waterloo and following months were the end of the Napoleonic wars, and the end of the "Big" ...


26

Many French may have borne arms for the Axis, but it was very soft support; not many of them ever fired a shot in anger for the Axis. Even in October/November 1942 with the Axis at flood tide, Vichy North Africa rapidly switched allegiance after the Torch Landings at Casablanca, Oran and Algiers, despite some initial confused opposition. Following the ...


26

The Franks were a German tribe, speaking a Germanic language. They conquered part of the Roman Empire roughly corresponding to modern-day France. However, the common folk in that area spoke Latin, and never stopped just because their ruling class was now German. Over time their Latin language drifted until it became the language we now call "French". ...


24

Atlantic pockets The answer is surprisingly difficult to find on Wikipedia. I persisted in searching and finally found this: German military administration in occupied France during World War II The Liberation of France was the result of the Allied operations Overlord and Dragoon in the summer of 1944. Most of France was liberated by ...


24

To my surprise, this may be somewhat accurate. In the critical Battle of Sedan on May 13, Guderian fielded 1st and 2nd Panzer divisions, reinforced by Grossdeutchland infantry regiment, one regiment of assault engineers, and divisional artillery from two panzer divisions. To compensate for the absence of his artillery reserve, still in transit to the front, ...


23

In short: It was true until 2006. Now he can still run for president of France, but through the standard way : he can acquire French nationality through naturalization (like anyone) and run for president as a French citizen! More precisely : This article (Sorry, Bill Clinton. You can't be president of France or Ireland) explains deeply why : Clinton ...


23

It shouldn't. Before conquering England, William the Bastard was Duke of Normandy, a political entity that had been separate from West Francia (by 1066, the Kingdom of France) since 911 C.E. The Normans spoke a dialect of French, and William and his ancestors were technically vassals of the kings of France, but it was still more or less a separate entity. ...


23

Bordeaux and Nantes are major cities and their proximity to the Atlantic coast was key to their development so there is nothing unusual about France in this respect, it does have some major port cities on the Atlantic coast. The question, then, is really one of local geography. Those cities are located a few tens of kilometres away from the actual coastline,...


23

This anecdote is from Walter Scott's novel Quentin Durward. The king is Louis XI. The guy who predicts the future is Martius (Marti) Galeotti, Italian astrologist. The guard who is supposed to kill him at the exit of king's chamber is Oliver, barber and servant of Louis. I think Scott made it up. But possibly he read this is some historical source. Martius ...


22

Khomeini was in France because he had been expelled from Iran and then Iraq, and his aides had advised him to go to Europe, and because France granted him political asylum. He was at the time an aged and relatively obscure religious figure, a target of political persecution who had not been to his home country in well over a decade. They probably saw him as ...


22

Because this question has been edited many times I have to clarify that I am answering the version that asks: What caused the Iranian 1979 revolution to become Islamic? Short Answer (more suited for causal conversations in bars): It was easier to portray the Shah as anti Islamic ruler in league with the Western powers bent on destroying Islam in an Islamic ...


22

The main reason was that the allies were prepared to fight WW1 all over again. The Germans had very different ideas. The allies were ready to fight a static trench war in Belgium. Problem was that Belgium declared neutrality in 1936. That created huge problems for the allied planners. Allied officers were not allowed to coordinate with Belgium before ...


21

First, Belgium wasn't created by uniting the Walloons with the Flemish, but by secession from the Netherlands. This event is known as the Belgian Revolution. According to the linked Wikipedia article, one of the reasons for the revolution was that many future Belgians, even Flemish, "regarded King William I's rule as despotic". Moreover, Belgians are ...


20

Napoleon loved forward momentum - and he got it with the heavy column. The formation forced his infantry forward, the front ranks constantly pushed to the fore by the ranks behind them, and made opponents break formation to get the hell out of the way. This worked, because Napoleon was an artilleryman - he would disrupt opposing line formations with ...


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