Why France did not insist occupying natural borders of Frannce and try to annex Rhineland in 1945 ?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,495
SoCal
#11
Considering France was attacked and invaded not once or twice but three times from German launcing pads in west bank of Rhine in 75 years (1871-1945) with devastating consequences , why France did not occupy and annex Rhinelands permenantly (like Ferdinand Foch wished in 1918) at the end of war in 1945 ? Russians occupied East Prussia , Polish territory was shifted to Oder towards westwards , Silesia was taken over by Czechs and Polish goverment. Why France in post war truma did not gain any buffer zone territory for security ?
I strongly doubt that either Britain or the U.S. would have actually allowed France to do this after the end of World War II. Plus, the Rhineland was full of Germans and the Western Powers did not have the appetite to engage in large-scale expulsions like the Soviet Union and the Czechoslovaks did.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,495
SoCal
#12
Even if the French wanted to, I doubt the UK, USA or even Russia would have allowed it. France was hardly in a strong negotiating power in 1945.
This is completely correct and also having France control the Rhineland would have created a very serious demographic problem due to its large German population--with the West not having the appetite to engage in large-scale expulsions.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,495
SoCal
#13
The prevailing philosophy of 1945 was to avoid a future war. Everyone understood by then that the Treaty of Versailles had been a major cause of WW2. No one was interested in another 1919-style solution. Wasn't the French occupation of the Saarland similar to the US, British, and Soviet occupations of Germany that continued throughout the Cold War? Still an effective way of controlling Germany but also a different solution than Versailles - and far more successful.
Germany actually was treated very harshly after the end of WWII, though. It was divided for almost half a century and lost a quarter of its territory--with something like 12-15 million ethnic Germans being expelled from the East.
 
Apr 2017
710
U.S.A.
#14
France did want to take the Rhineland after ww2, there were even plans to give a large chunk of nw Germany to the Netherlands (and expel millions of Germans). The plans were rejected because it was realized there wouldn't be enough room in what was left in Germany for the germans.
 
Likes: Futurist

Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
4,382
Netherlands
#15
France did want to take the Rhineland after ww2, there were even plans to give a large chunk of nw Germany to the Netherlands (and expel millions of Germans). The plans were rejected because it was realized there wouldn't be enough room in what was left in Germany for the germans.
Never heard that one (Dutch getting territories). Any link as I am quite curious?
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,495
SoCal
#20
What I'm wondering is if the Netherlands would have had enough people to settle all of this Lebensraum if it would have actually acquired it.

Thoughts?