In the First World War, one of the main aims of the French was to retake the “lost provinces” of Alsace and Lorraine, which had been occupied by the Germans since the Franco-Prussian war of 1871. But this was only one phase of a long cycle of power imbalances leading to invasions and thirst for revenge between these two countries.
This episode was written by Simon Cains.
Simon has a degree in geophysics from the University of Lancaster. Simon started tracing his family history as a child, found that his 3x great grandfather Cains was conscripted into the English militia and he wondered why they were posted to the Yorkshire coast in 1779, which started a deep interest in the effects of the American War of Independence in England.
He has also researched the actions of another great grandfather and his brother who were both killed in the army in France during WW1, and enjoys battlefield tours and alternative histories.