In the night of 17 May 1940, confusing reports were reaching French High Command. They spoke of what was thought impossible: The German Army had broken through the Maginot Line in the north. Scattered and panicked soldiers spoke of a “Division Fantôme” – a Ghost Division! It was Generalmajor Erwin Rommel’s 7th Panzer Division that was wreaking havoc in the French rear. In an unauthorized push, Rommel had seized the opportunity to rush the French fortress garrisons by a surprise armor attack straight from the move. Now in open space and with the night sky illuminated by burning French tanks and trucks, it was crucial for the Ghost Division to exploit its tactical victory. Alone and cut off like an island in a sea of enemies, this was easier said than done.
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