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AnswerThere were many reasons:

incredible german war tactics : blitzkrieg

the outdated french defenses : maginot line

etc

AnswerSome believe that the French will to fight was weak, and that this was as important as the reasons given in the first answer.
  • France had suffered very heavy losses in WW1 and was many Frenchmen (and women) were willing to pay a high price to avoid a repetition of the carnage.
  • As far I'm aware, no other well established democracy became as deeply divided as France in the 1930s. When the left-wing Popular Front came to power in 1936, some French conservatives seem to have felt that it was no longer the France that 'they knew and loved' [and were willing to fight for] and a small but growing number flirted with Fascism, which already had a stronger following than in any other democracy. Many in the military and in the Roman Catholic Church made no secret of their admiration of Franco. In fairness, it should be added that the Communist Party was a key pillar of the Popular Front. There was polarization and a really divided country seldom fights very effectively. (Compare with Tsarist Russia in 1904-5 and again in 1914). Fighting a major war requires social cohension.

Despite all the problems listed in both answers, there were also French men and women who believed that the main body of the French armed forces had surrendered far too willingly. After all, at the time of the surrender, the Germans took 1.8 million (!) French soldiers prisoner. It was not for nothing that Marc Bloch (1886-1944, when he was shot by the Gestapo) entitled his book on the 1940 campaign and surrender "Strange Defeat". Charles de Gaulle and others fled to Britain to continue the fight.

Alternate answer-

Their strong defense line plan failed(Maginot lines), it was an not a winnable battle at the time.

France has a lot of history and had many innocents to look out for so they had to hand over France to Nazi's during World War 2.

France has a long history of interesting warfare and if you do overlook this terrible part of their military history you can understand the french are not "just cheese-eating surrender monkeys,"

they simply knew the outcome of their actions and did not have the strength to fight back.

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โˆ™ 2010-12-30 13:43:15
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Q: Why did the French surrender in World War 2?
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