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Last update: October 18, 2004.
- Gallic Wars
- Lost. In a war whose ending foreshadows the next 2000 years of French history, France is conquered
by of all things, an Italian.
- Hundred Years War
- Mostly lost, saved at last by female schizophrenic who
inadvertently creates The First Rule of French Warfare; "France's armies are victorious only when not led by a Frenchman."
- Italian Wars
- Lost. France becomes the first and only country to ever lose two wars when fighting
- Wars of Religion
- France goes 0-5-4 against the Huguenots
- Thirty Years War
France is technically not a participant, but manages to get invaded anyway. Claims a tie on the basis that eventually the
other participants started ignoring her.
- War of Revolution
- Tied. Frenchmen take to wearing red flowerpots
- The Dutch War
- War of the Augsburg League/King William's War/French and
- Lost, but claimed as a tie. Three ties in a row induces deluded Frogophiles the world over to label the
period as the height of French military power.
- War of the Spanish Succession
- Lost. The War also gave
the French their first taste of a Marlborough, which they have loved every since.
- American Revolution
In a move that will become quite familiar to future Americans, France claims a win even though the English colonists saw far
more action. This is later known as "de Gaulle Syndrome", and leads to the Second Rule of French Warfare; "France only wins
when America does most of the fighting."
- French Revolution
- Won, primarily due the fact that the opponent
was also French.
- The Napoleonic Wars
- Lost. Temporary victories (remember the First Rule!) due to leadership
of a Corsican, who ended up being no match for a British footwear designer.
- The Franco-Prussian War
Germany first plays the role of drunk Frat boy to France's ugly girl home alone on a Saturday night.
- World War
- Tied and on the way to losing, France is saved by the United States. Thousands of French women find out what it's
like to not only sleep with a winner, but one who doesn't call her "Fraulein." Sadly, widespread use of condoms by American
forces forestalls any improvement in the French bloodline.
- World War II
- Lost. Conquered French liberated
by the United States and Britain just as they finish learning the Horst Wessel Song.
- War in Indochina
Lost. French forces plead sickness; take to bed with the Dien Bien Flu
- Algerian Rebellion
- Lost. Loss
marks the first defeat of a western army by a Non-Turkic Muslim force since the Crusades, and produces the First Rule of Muslim
Warfare; "We can always beat the French." This rule is identical to the First Rules of the Italians, Russians, Germans, English,
Dutch, Spanish, Vietnamese and Esquimaux.
- War on Terrorism
- France, keeping in mind its recent history,
surrenders to Germans and Muslims just to be safe. Attempts to surrender to Vietnamese ambassador fail after he takes refuge
in a McDonald's.
The question for any country silly enough to count on the French should not be "Can we count on the
French?", but rather "How long until France collapses?"
"Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without
an accordion. All you do is leave behind a lot of noisy baggage."
Or, better still, the quote from last week's Wall
Street Journal: "They're there when they need you."
With only an hour and a half of research, Jonathan Duczkowski provided the following losses:
Norse invasions, 841-911.
After having their way with the French for 70 years, the Norse are bribed by a French King
named Charles the Simple (really!) who gave them Normandy in return for peace. Normans proceed to become just about the only
positive military bonus in France's [favour] for next 500 years.
France attempts to take advantage of Mexico's weakness following its thorough thrashing by the U.S.
20 years earlier ("Halls of Montezuma"). Not surprisingly, the only unit to distinguish itself is the French Foreign Legion
(consisting of, by definition, non-Frenchmen). Booted out of the country a little over a year after arrival.
Panama jungles 1881-1890.
No one but nature to fight, France still loses; canal is eventually built by the U.S. 1904-1914.
Should be noted that the Grand Armee was largely (~%50) composed of non-Frenchmen after 1804 or so.
Mainly disgruntled minorities and anti-monarchists. Not surprisingly, these performed better than the French on many occasions.
French defeated by rebellion after sacrificing 4,000 Poles to yellow fever. Shows another rule of
French warfare; when in doubt, send an ally.
British were far more charming then French, ended up victors. Therefore the British are well known
for their tea, and the French for their whine (er, wine...). Ensures 200 years of bad teeth in England.
Barbary Wars, middle ages-1830.
Pirates in North Africa continually harass European shipping in Meditteranean. France's
solution: pay them to leave us alone. America's solution: kick their asses ("the Shores of Tripoli"). [America's] first overseas
victories, won 1801-1815.
1798-1801, Quasi-War with U.S.
French privateers (semi-legal pirates) attack U.S. shipping. U.S. fights France at sea
for 3 years; French eventually cave; sets precedent for next 200 years of Franco-American relations.
Moors in Spain, late 700s-early 800s.
Even with Charlemagne leading them against an enemy living in a hostile land,
French are unable to make much progress. Hide behind Pyrennes until the modern day.
French-on-French losses (probably should be counted as victories too, just to be fair):
1208: Albigenses Crusade, French massacared by French.
When asked how to differentiate a heretic from the faithful,
response was "Kill them all. God will know His own." Lesson: French are badasses when fighting unarmed men, women and children.
St. Bartholomew Day Massacre, August 24, 1572.
Once again, French-on-French slaughter.
Philip Augustus of France throws hissy-fit, leaves Crusade for Richard the Lion Heart to finish.
St. Louis of France leads Crusade to Egypt. Resoundingly crushed.
St. Louis back in action, this time in Tunis. See Seventh Crusade.
Also should be noted that France attempted to hide behind the Maginot line, sticking their head in the sand and pretending
that the Germans would enter France that way. By doing so, the Germans would have been breaking with their traditional route
of invading France, entering through Belgium (Napoleonic Wars, Franco-Prussian War, World War I, etc.). French ignored this
though, and put all their effort into these defenses.
Last updated: October 18, 2004.
For more funny French stuff, check out "The French Erotic Film" in Flash Animations