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Western Front was a term used during the First and Second World Wars to describe the "contested armed frontier" between lands controlled by Germany to the East and the Entente/Allies to the West.

Variations of these two separate fronts appear in several works of Harry Turtledove.

Western Front of World War IEdit

During World War I, from the end of the First Battle of Ypres until the last few months of the summer of 1918, the Western Front consisted of a relatively static line of trench systems which stretched from the coast of the North Sea southward to the Swiss border.

The principal adversaries on the Western Front, who fielded armies of millions of men, were Germany to the East against France and the United Kingdom to the West, with sizable contingents taken from the Allied empires, especially the British Dominions. The United States entered the war on the side of the Entente in 1917. The inexorable advance of the Allied armies in 1918 persuaded the German commanders that defeat was inevitable, and the government was forced to sue for conditions of an armistice.

In Turtledove's workEdit

Aside from the story "Ils ne passeront pas", Turtledove has not set any of his stories in the historical Western Front of the First World War, although he has created characters who were veterans of the Western Front.

See: Western Front of the Great War (Southern Victory) for its Great War analog.

Western Front of World War IIEdit

The Western Front had three separate phases during World War II. The first phase lasted from September 1, 1939, until June 25, 1940. It started with the Phony War with the Allies taking up positions which created a front similar to that held during most of World War I. The first phase lasted until the Germans attacked and won a stunningly fast victory in June 1940. The British had to withdraw it forces and France was forced to capitulate.

The second phase from the late summer of July 1940 until early June 1944 consisted of a stalemate along the English Channel where neither side was strong enough to invade the other's territory with anything more than commando raids. The main action during this period was happening in the Eastern Front.

The third and final phase started on June 6, 1944 with the invasion of Normandy, when an allied force consisting of American, British and Canadian troops (with units from many other nations), successfully gained a beach head in Normandy in northern France.

In Turtledove's workEdit

Turtledove frequently alters or completely rewrites the Western Front in his works. In "Ready for the Fatherland", the Normandy invasion fails and there is no reopening of the Western Front. In In the Presence of Mine Enemies, it does not appear as if anything like the Normandy invasion was planned, much less attempted.

For analogs to this front see:


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