The French Offensive in the Saare - TWiE The First Blitzkrieg
The French Offensive in the SaareBy Saunders & Blackie
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The Saare Gap region on the French-German frontier - 6th September 1939: Only a week prior to the outbreak of war, the Commander of the French Armed Forces, General Maurice Gamelin, told his government that France could not hope to launch a major offensive for at least two years. Yet two weeks later, more as a matter of honor, a token advance in support of the much beleaguered Polish Army was made in the Saare Gap region directed at the industrial center of Saarbrücken. The advance penetrated a bare six miles into Germany and no sooner had it begun, it became apparent to those in the West that the Polish situation was rapidly becoming hopeless and came to an abrupt stop. The French had no intention of forcing the Germans' hand in this early attack and, therefore, no additional support was committed. Thus a golden opportunity may have been lost as even some high ranking German officers believed a determined offensive might have carried the French through the West Wall before the Germans could have brought back formations from Poland. This scenario covers the limited focus Saare offensive by the French in 1939 with forces available and forces that could have been committed had the French had the will to do so.