Each battery was equipped with air conditioned personal quarters, a sophisticated fire control communication network, state of the art weaponry, even an underground railway system linking each position together.
The Maginot Line was painstakingly designed, maintained at great cost, and meticulously rehearsed to defeat the German invasion of 1914 through absorbing a first-strike and counterattacking. But 1914 had come and gone, and it was 1940 that condemned the 3rd French Republic to the most humiliating defeat of a World Power in modern warfare. How could such a thing happen?
France was objectively stronger than Germany in 1940 in terms of economic GDP, armored divisions, aircraft, and soldiers – not even counting the 316,000 strong British Expeditionary Force - yet was forced to surrender in six weeks to a nation whom the Third Republic had written off a decade before. Their fate was sealed not solely by Panzerkorps Guderian smashing through the Ardennes, but by their timidity and fear of seeming aggressive. A nation apprehensive of future conflict will seek out the best way to protect their interests with the least potential loss of life, no matter the financial costs.