Hitler's Strategy 1940-1941: The Balkan Clue

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Cambridge University Press, Nov 22, 1973 - History - 248 pages
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Did Mussolini invade Greece against Hitler's wishes? Were Fuhrer's plans for that country purely defensive? How did the German campaign in the Balkans affect their attack on Soviet Russia? These are a few of the questions to which Dr van Crevland provides provocative answers. Using Hitler's attitude to Greece and Yugoslavia as a vital clue, this book puts forward a novel interpretation of Germany's overall strategy in the years 1940-1. Rejecting 'traditional views', the author suggests that Hitler was in fact greatly interested in the Mediterranean and the possibilities it offered for conducting 'peripheral' warfare against Great Britain, that he authorized, or at least tolerated in silence, Mussolini's attack on Greece; that, after about 30 November 1940, he repeatedly made peaceful overtures to Greece but that these were rejected by Athens because of British Pressure; that Rumanians, Bulgarians and Yugoslavs put serious obstacles in the way of the planned German invasion of Greece; that military planning for that campaign was vague about its objectives until the last moment; that the Yugoslav coup d'état of 27 March 1941 and the subsequent German invasion did not cause any delay to the German attack on the USSR.

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About the author (1973)

Martin van Creveld is professor emeritus at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and writes on subjects ranging from military history to the history of women. He is the author of many books, including, most recently, "The Age of Airpower" and "Wargames".

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