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7. The Belgian Army to May 10, 1940

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Chapter Summary

The chapter looks at the arming of the Belgian forces and the assessment of the army by foreign military professionals. It discusses the building of Belgian fortifications, especially the 'K-W Line', on which the Belgians and Allies planned to fight in 1940. It then examines the development of the Belgian Air Force, and shows how Belgian plans and soldiers were tried and found wanting by the Sudeten Crisis. In light of certain deficiencies of the provisional battalions revealed by the mobilization during the Sudeten Crisis, the Belgian army also revamped its mobilization scheme. It was completely reshaped into a five-stage process aimed both south and east, the main purpose being to deter a sudden invasion. The units would be deployed closer to their covering positions. The plan dating from January 1940 involved placing Belgium's 22 divisions on an initial 210 km front largely along the Albert Canal.

Keywords: Belgian army; K-W Line; mobilization scheme; Sudeten Crisis



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