Stating that the fall of France was the most disastrous event in the history of World War II, Professor Hans Kohn of Smith College spoke yesterday in the New Lecture Hall for the Harvard unit of France Forever in celebration of Bastille Day.
Professor Kohn placed the blame for the French surrender on three causes. The first was the softness, not only of the French, but also of the British and American civilizations. The second was the lack of a will to win among the French people. The third cause was a miscalculation on the part of the French leader, Marshal Petain, who failed to take into account the strength of the British will to win. Expecting the British to yield, he surrendered before the Germans should completely overrun his homeland.
Defeat Had Certain Values
Pointing out that the defeat of France had its values also, Professor Kohn stated that this event was in great part responsible for arousing the American and British people and galvanizing them into action against the Germans.
The program was concluded by the presentation of the flags of the United States, France, the Free French, and the banner of the Harvard unit of France Forever. Then George Gerard '43, president of the Harvard group, spoke and presented two pictures, one on the conquest of France, and the other on the Fighting French.