The relations between France and Germany, since 1871, according to Krotz, has three grand periods: 'hereditary enmity' (down to 1945), 'reconciliation' (1945–63) and since 1963 the 'special relationship' embodied in a cooperation called Franco-German Friendship (French: Amitié franco-allemande; German: Deutsch-Französische Freundschaft).
Especially in the context of the European Union, the cooperation between the countries reaches immense coordination and collaboration. Even though France has at times been eurosceptical in outlook, especially under President Charles de Gaulle, Franco-German agreements and cooperations have always been key to furthering the ideals of European integration.
In recent times, France and Germany are among the most enthusiastic proponents of the further integration of the EU. They are sometimes described as the "twin engine" or "core countries" pushing for moves.
- 1 Country comparison
- 2 History
- 3 Development of Contemporary Relations
- 3.1 "Hereditary" enmity
- 3.2 France, Germany, and United Europe
- 3.3 Friendship
- 4 Alliances
- 5 See also
- 6 Notes and references
- 7 Further reading
- 8 External links
|Area||674,843 km2 (260,558 sq mi)||357,021 km2 (137,847 sq mi )|
|Population Density||116/km2 (301/sq mi)||229/km2 (593/sq mi)|
|Largest City||Paris – 2,234,105 (12,161,542 Metro)||Berlin – 3,510,032 (5,964,002 Metro)|
|Government||Unitary semi-presidential constitutional republic||Federal parliamentary constitutional republic|
|Official language||French (de facto and de jure)||German (de facto and de jure)|
|Main religions||58% Christianity, 31% non-Religious, 7% Islam,
1% Judaism, 1% Buddhism, 2% Other
|67.07% Christianity, 29.6% non-Religious, 5% Islam, 0.25% Buddhism,
0.25% Judaism, 0.1% Hinduism, 0.09% Sikhism
|Ethnic groups||84% French, 7% other European, 7% North African, Other Sub-Saharan African,
Indochinese, Asian, Latin American and Pacific Islander.
|80% Germans, 5% Turks, 5% other Europeans, 10% Other|
|GDP (PPP)||$2.257 trillion, $35,613 per capita||$3.099 trillion, $37,896 per capita|
|GDP (nominal)||$2.712 trillion, $42,793 per capita||$3.577 trillion, $43,741 per capita|
|Expatriate populations||110,881 French citizens lived in Germany on Dec. 31, 2012||95,060 German citizens lived in France in 2009|
|Military expenditures||$62.5 billion||$46.7 billion|
Both France and Germany track their history back to the time of Charlemagne, whose vast empire included most of the area of both modern-day France and Germany – as well as the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, and northern Italy.
The death of Charlemagne's son Louis the Pious and the following partition of the Frankish Empire in the 843 Treaty of Verdun marked the end of a single state. While the population in both the Western and Eastern kingdoms had relative homogeneous language groups (Gallo-Romanic in West Francia, and Low German and High German in East Francia), Middle Francia was a mere strip of a mostly blurring yet culturally rich language-border-area, roughly between the rivers Meuse and Rhine - and soon partitioned again. After the 880 Treaty of Ribemont, the border between western and eastern kingdom remained almost unchanged for some 600 years. Germany went on with a centuries-long attachment with Italy, while France grew into deeper relations with England.
Despite a gradual cultural alienation during the High and Late Middle Ages, social and cultural interrelations remained present through the preeminence of Latin language and Frankish clergy and nobility.
France and Habsburg
The later Emperor Charles V, a member of the Austrian House of Habsburg, inherited the Low Countries and the Franche-Comté in 1506. When he also inherited Spain in 1516, France was surrounded by Habsburg territories and felt under pressure. The resulting tension between the two powers caused a number of conflicts such as the War of the Spanish Succession, until the Diplomatic Revolution of 1756 made them allies against Prussia.
The Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), devastating large parts of Germany, fell into this period. Although the war was mostly a conflict between Protestants and Catholics, Catholic France sided with the Protestants against the Austrian-led Catholic Imperial forces. The Peace of Westphalia in 1648 gave France part of Alsace. The 1679 Treaties of Nijmegen consolidated this result by bringing several towns under French control. In 1681, France occupied Strasbourg.
Meanwhile the expanding Muslim Ottoman Empire became a serious threat to Austria. The Vatican initiated a so-called Holy League against the "hereditary enemy" of Christian Europe ("Erbfeind christlichen Namens"). Far from joining or supporting the common effort of Austria, Germany and Poland, France under Louis XIV of France invaded the Spanish Netherlands in September 1683, a few days before the Battle of Vienna. While Austria was occupied with the Great Turkish War (1683–1699), France initiated the War of the Grand Alliance (1688–1697). The attempt to conquer large parts of southern Germany ultimately failed when German troops were withdrawn from the Ottoman border and moved to the region. However, following a scorched earth policy that caused a large public outcry at the time, French troops devastated large parts of the Palatinate, burning down and levelling numerous cities and towns in southern Germany.
France and Prussia
In the 18th century, the rise of Prussia as a new German power caused the Diplomatic Revolution and an alliance between France, Habsburg and Russia, manifested in 1756 in the Treaty of Versailles and the Seven Years' War against Prussia and Great Britain. Although a German national state was on the horizon, the loyalties of the German population were primarily with smaller states. The French war against Prussia was justified through its role as guarantor of the Peace of Westphalia, and it was in fact fighting on the side of the majority of German states.
Frederick the Great led the defense of Prussia for 7 years, and though heavily outnumbered, defeated his French and Austrian invaders. Prussia and France clashed multiple times, and many more times than the other countries. This started years of hatred between the two countries. Frederick the Great was soon respected by all of his enemies, and Napoleon himself used him as a model for battle.
The civil population still regarded war as a conflict between their authorities, and did not so much distinguish between troops according to the side on which they fought but rather according to how they treated the local population. The personal contacts and mutual respect between French and Prussian officers did not stop entirely while they were fighting each other, and the war resulted in a great deal of cultural exchange between French occupiers and German population.
Development of Contemporary Relations
The perception of war began to change after the French Revolution. The French mass conscription for the Revolutionary Wars and the beginning formation of nation states in Europe made war increasingly a conflict between peoples rather than a conflict between authorities carried out on the backs of their subjects.
Napoleon put an end to the millennium-old Holy Roman Empire in 1806, forming his own Confederation of the Rhine, and reshaped the political map of the German states, which were still divided. The wars, often fought in Germany and with Germans on both sides as in the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig, also marked the beginning of what was explicitly called French–German hereditary enmity. Napoleon directly incorporated German-speaking areas such as the Rhineland and Hamburg into his First French Empire and treated the monarchs of the remaining German states as vassals. Modern German nationalism was born in opposition to French domination under Napoleon. In the recasting of the map of Europe after Napoleon's defeat, the German-speaking territories in the Rhineland adjoining France were put under the rule of Prussia.
In the 19th and early 20th centuries, with the rise of mutually hostile modern nationalism, writers, historians and politicians in both countries tended to project their enmity backwards, regarded all history as a single, coherent and unbroken narrative of ongoing conflict, and re-interpreted the earlier history to fit into the concept of a "hereditary enmity". But this concept only makes sense from approximately the time of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–1871.
During the first half of the 19th century, many Germans looked forward to a unification of the German states, though most German leaders and the foreign powers were opposed to it. The German nationalist movement believed that a united Germany would replace France as the dominant land power in Western Europe. This argument was aided by demographic changes: since the Middle Ages, France had had the largest population in Western Europe, but in the 19th century its population stagnated (a trend which continued until the second half of the 20th century), and the population of the German states overtook it and continued to rapidly increase.
The eventual unification of Germany was triggered by the Franco-German War in 1870 and subsequent French defeat. Finally, in the Treaty of Frankfurt, reached after a lengthy siege of Paris, France was forced to cede the German-speaking Alsace-Lorraine territory (consisting of most of Alsace and a quarter of Lorraine), and pay an indemnity of five billion francs to the newly declared German Empire. Thereafter, the German Empire was widely viewed as having replaced France as the leading land power in Europe.
After the war and its highly antagonistic reverberations in the 1870s, the relationship mellowed in the 1880s. Germany and France became friendly; there was even some talk of an alliance, but no agreement was reached. The issue of Alsace-Lorraine faded somewhat in importance, but the rapid growth in the population and economy of Germany left France increasingly far behind. In the 1890s relationships remained good as Germany supported France during its difficulties with Britain over African colonies. The harmony collapsed in 1905, when Germany took an aggressively hostile position to French claims to Morocco.
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The desire for revenge (esprit de revanche) against Germany, and in particular for the recovery of the “lost provinces” of Alsace and Lorraine (whose importance was summed up by the French politician Gambetta in the phrase: “Never speak of them; never forget them!”) remained strong in France over the next 50 years and was the key French war aim in World War I. The Allied victory saw France regain Alsace-Lorraine and briefly resume its old position as the leading land power on the European continent. France was the leading proponent of harsh peace terms against Germany at the Paris Peace Conference. Since the war had been fought on French soil, it had destroyed much of French infrastructure and industry, and France had suffered the highest number of casualties proportionate to population. Much French opinion wanted the Rhineland, the section of Germany adjoining France and the old focus of French ambition, to be detached from Germany as an independent country; in the end they settled for a promise that the Rhineland would be demilitarized, and heavy German reparation payments. On the remote Eastern end of the German Empire, the Memel territory was separated from the rest of East Prussia and occupied by France before being annexed by Lithuania. To alleged German failure to pay reparations under the Treaty of Versailles in 1923 (Germany being accused of not having delivered telephone poles on time), France responded with the occupation of the Rhineland and the industrial Ruhr area of Germany, the center of German coal and steel production, until 1925. Also, the French-dominated International Olympic Committee banned Germany from the Olympic Games of 1920 and 1924, which illustrates French desire to isolate Germany.
However, the UK and the US didn't favor these policies, seen as too pro-French so Germany soon recovered its old strength (most of the war reparations were cancelled under the pressure of the UK and the US), then from 1933 under Adolf Hitler, began to pursue an aggressive policy in Europe. Meanwhile France in the 1930s was tired, politically divided, and above all dreaded another war, which the French feared would again be fought on their soil for the third time, and again destroy a large percentage of their young men. France's stagnant population meant that it would find it difficult to withhold the sheer force of numbers of a German invasion; it was estimated Germany could put two men of fighting age in the field for every French soldier. Thus in the 1930s the French, with their British allies, pursued a policy of appeasement of Germany, failing to respond to the remilitarization of the Rhineland, although this put the German army on a larger stretch of the French border.
Finally, however, Hitler pushed France and Britain too far, and they jointly declared war when Germany invaded Poland in September 1939. But France remained exhausted and in no mood for a rerun of 1914–18. There was little enthusiasm and much dread in France at the prospect of actual warfare after the “phony war”. When the Germans launched their blitzkrieg invasion of France in 1940, the French Army crumbled within weeks, and with Britain retreating, an atmosphere of humiliation and defeat swept France.
A new government under Marshal Philippe Pétain surrendered, and German forces occupied most of the country. A minority of the French forces escaped abroad and continued the fight under General Charles de Gaulle (the “Free French” or “Fighting French”). On the other hand, the French Resistance conducted sabotage operations inside German-occupied France. To support the invasion of Normandy of 1944, various groups increased their sabotage and guerrilla attacks; organizations such as the Maquis derailed trains, blew up ammunition depots, and ambushed Germans, for instance at Tulle. The 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich came under constant attack and sabotage on their way across the country to Normandy, suspected the village of Oradour-sur-Glane of harboring terrorists, arms and explosives, and wiped out the population in retaliation.
There was also a free French army fighting with the Allies, numbering almost five hundred thousand men by June 1944, one million by December and 1.3 million by the end of the war. By the war's end, the French army occupied south-west Germany and a part of Austria.
When Allied forces liberated Normandy and Provence in August 1944, a victorious rebellion emerged in occupied Paris and national rejoicing broke out, as did a maelstrom of hatred directed at French people who had collaborated with the Germans (most infamously, the shaving of the heads of French girls who had gone out with German soldiers). Some Germans taken as prisoners were killed by the resistance.
France, Germany, and United Europe
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Origins and roots of "Europe Integration" Ideology
Although most historians claimed that the project of European integration was born after the Second World War, it was in reality first adopted by Nazi, fascist and collaborators from many European countries during the war. They widely spread and used the European ideology to justify their aggression, specifically the German Nazi regime, which spent many of the war years developing a serious program for European economic and political integration.
Hitler's Nazi philosophy was based on creating an integrated Europe on the German model. Accordingly, German propaganda during the war dedicated a big effort in the occupied countries to convince the rest of Europe of the prosperity and magnificent working conditions of German workers, their great housing and social security system and in general their economy as superior than the rest of Europe.
The onset of first sights of Franco-German cooperation
Marshal Petain who was the military leader of Vichy France during the Second World War adopted the ideology of National Revolution which was originally based on a pro-German idea which had been known widely in 1930s.At that time Germany worked hard to spread it widely in Europe.
When the Franco-German reconciliation committee "Comité France-Allemagne" founded in 1935 in Paris it was an important element for Germany to get closer to France, views of Pro-European, Pro-German, anti British, anti liberal political and economic views and some times Pro-Nazi views was adopted by this Committee. Later on the key members of the Committee became the key leaders of the French collaborators with Nazis after 1940.
When Marshal Petain officially proclaimed the collaboration policy with Nazi Germany in June 1941, he justified it to the French people as an essential need for the New European Order and to keep the unity of France. Therefore, much of WW2 French propaganda was pro-European, exactly as German propaganda was Therefore, a group called "Group Collaboration" had been established during the war in France, and led a myriad of conferences promoting Pro-Europeanism. The very first time the expression "European Community" was used was at its first sessions, as well as many conferences and guests lectures sponsored by the German government, propagating French-German reconciliation, French renewal and European solidarity.
Post war Europe
The war left Europe in a weak position and divided between the United States and the Soviet Union. For the first time in the History of the Europe both American and Soviets had a strategic foothold on the continent. Defeated Germany had American, British and Soviet troops in its territory and was divided into zones of occupation by the victorious powers. Soviet troops remained in those countries in Eastern Europe that had been liberated by the red army from the Nazis. The American troops also remained on the territory of the member countries which became later members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.
The shape of western Europe was imposed by the events which occurred from 1945-50. Thus, there was a core of allied countries which recognized their ultimate dependence on each other[Is this a fact or an opinion?] and on the fate of Western Germany, a group of surrounding neutrals which were sharply isolated by the 'iron curtain' for their cooperation with eastern powers and an outer group of more reluctant allies. This political geography imposed post war remained in place for decades; later on it witnessed a significant modification.
Western European countries were also in urgent need of financial aid to recover and develop their economies that had been destroyed during the war. In addition to that, Western Europeans at that time were looking to achieve the economic performance of the United States. In contrast, the above-mentioned reasons were the major motivation for Western European countries to integrate after World War II.[opinion]
It has been argued that[according to whom?] the then United States Secretary of State, George Marshall made his eponymous plan in June 1947 to bring about the division of western Europe from the east, and promote integration within western Europe, and additionally encouraged the preparation of an organization which can administer this aid. This led to the establishment of the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) in 1948.
The bases of the Franco-German Cooperation in the EU
Earlier in 1948, there were significant key leaders in the French civil service who favoured an agreement with the Germans as well as an integrated Europe that would include Germany. The French European Department was working on a coal and steel agreement for the Ruhr-Lorraine-Luxembourg area, with equal rights for all. One French civil servant recommended 'laying down the bases of a Franco-German economic and political association that would slowly become integrated into the framework of the evolving Western organization'. Deighton strongly illustrated that the French leaders sought the cooperation with the Germans as key factor on the path of integrated Europe.
As a sequence, Jean Monnet, which has been described as the founder father and the chief architect of European Unity, announced the French Schuman plan of 9 May 1950, which led to the founding a year later of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). The plan brought the reconciliation of France and Germany, the axis of political European integration, furthermore, the plan announced the proposal of a European army. This led to the signing of the treaty of the European Defence Community (EDC) in 1952. The main purpose of establishing such army was to create a "European security identity", through closer Franco-German military and security cooperation.
In like manner, the German minister of economics Ludwig Erhard, created a significant evolution in the German economy and a durable, well established trading relationship between the Federal Republic and its European neighbours as well. Later on when the Treaty of Rome came into action in 1958, it took the responsibility to strengthen and sustain the new political and economic relationships that had developed between the German nation and its former victims in Western Europe. The treaty beside it included side deals; it created a customs union and established the rules needed to make the competition mechanism work properly.
As a sequence of this, booming European economies, fired by Germany, led to the formation of the new customs union known as the European Economic Community (EEC). But it did not go well as the organization of Europe, because only the members of the coal and steel community 'ECSC' (" the six": Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembuourg, the Netherlands and West Germany) joined the EEC. Seven of the remaining nations belonging to the Organization of European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) which administered the Marshall Plan, did not join the EEC but instead formed an alternative body, the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). It was a free trade area as opposed to a customs union with common external tariffs and a political agenda, competing with the EEC as it was remarkably successful.[according to whom?]
Likewise, a liberal integration project had been launched by the Austrian economist Frederich von Hayek, he ranks alongside Monnet as one of the founding fathers the new Europe. Hayek was inspired by the success of the performance of the West German economy led by Ludwig Erhard, and by Margaret Thatcher, the moving force behind the Single European Act, which restarted the integration process by the late 1980s. Hayek described the process of 'positive integration' works, it doesn’t matter if the process begins in politics or economics, the two constructively interact and produce beneficial outcomes. European integration in its economic phases is a product of the levels. The first great part as Hayek illustrates is the historical reconciliation of France and Germany by the Schuman Plan. The second, the adoption of Rome treaty which created the common customs area. The third part is the spread of neo-liberalism, Thatcherism and globalization.
With the threat of the Soviet Union during the Cold War, West Germany sought its national security in the re-integration into Western Europe, while France sought after a re-establishment as a Grande Nation. The post-war Franco-German cooperation is based on the Élysée Treaty, which was signed by Charles de Gaulle and Konrad Adenauer on January 22, 1963. The treaty contained a number of agreements for joint cooperation in foreign policy, economic and military integration and exchange of student education.
The treaty was signed under difficult political situations at that time and criticized both by opposition parties in France and Germany, as well as from the United Kingdom and the United States. Opposition from the United Kingdom and the United States was answered by an added preamble which postulated a close cooperation with those (including NATO) and a targeted German reunification.
The treaty achieved a lot in initiating European integration and a stronger Franco-German co-position in transatlantic relations.
The initial concept for the Franco-German cooperation however dates back a lot further than the Elysée Treaty and is based on the overcoming the centuries of Franco-German hostilities within Europe. It was compared to a re-establishment of Charlemagne's European empire as it existed before division by the Treaty of Verdun in 843 AD.
The Schuman declaration of 1950 is regarded by some as the founding of Franco-German cooperation, as well as of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) of 1951, which also included Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.
The cooperation was accompanied by strong personal alliance in various degrees:
- Konrad Adenauer and Charles de Gaulle
- Willy Brandt and Georges Pompidou
- Helmut Schmidt and Valéry Giscard d'Estaing
- Helmut Kohl and François Mitterrand
- Gerhard Schröder and Jacques Chirac
- Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy
- Angela Merkel and François Hollande.
As early as 1994 - a time of the EU12 - the German Christian Democrats Wolfgang Schäuble and Karl Lamers published a pamphlet in which they called for a Kerneuropa (= core Europe). This came in response to a slowing down of European integration by eurosceptic member states while many Europeans in "core Europe" states ask for a stronger Europe. Those countries typically include France, Germany and the Benelux, as well as Austria, Spain and Italy. The core Europe idea envisaged that it would have a 'centripetal effect', a magnetic attraction for the rest of Europe.
Yet, the emergence of the envisaged "core social Europe" has become highly unlikely - the original Schäuble-Lamers idea of multi-speed Europe has since been replaced by the concept of a variable geometry Europe which is formally represented in the political instrument of enhanced co-operation. Additionally the core Europe policy would contradict the structural reform agenda that has marked the German social-democratic government and would also be at odds with Berlin's general support for further enlargement. France has also expressed that any factual split would be in contradiction to the EU ideals thereby risking the completion of an EU super nation encompassing the whole of Europe.
Other practical problems of a possible core Europe are that France and Germany find it hard to establish agreement within various policy areas. Both countries want to strengthen European defence forces, but Germany is cutting its defence spending. Both France and Germany would like to boost the EU's foreign policy, but France no longer supports Germany's call for majority voting in foreign policy. On asylum and migration policies, the two countries have quite different approaches, and progress in other areas of justice and home affairs has been slow.
However the two countries manage a common European policy in regard to European integration and also foreign affairs, a strong example of this is the Iraq War that aligned the Franco-German alliance with Russia and China in opposition to American and British foreign policy. The political differences around the Iraq War 2003 have also been influential on the creation of the G6 (EU) conferences that may be regarded as the new motor to align the views on foreign affairs and European integration.
Former French President Jacques Chirac has stated his desire to see Europe as a counterweight to American power against what some see as increasingly predatory American politics in the Middle East.
On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the Élysée Treaty in 2003, the EU Commissioners Pascal Lamy (France) and Günter Verheugen (Germany) presented the so-called Lamy-Verheugen Plan that proposes a factual unification of France and Germany in some important areas - including unified armed forces, combined embassies and a shared seat at the United Nations Security Council. Starting off that date the ministers were encouraged to maintain direct contact with a biannual joint Franco-German Ministerial Council held in the following years.
On 3 August 2014, French President Francois Hollande and German President Joachim Gauck together marked the centenary of Germany's declaration of war on France by laying the first stone of a memorial in Vieil Armand, France, known in German as Hartmannswillerkopf, for French and German soldiers killed in World War I.
The government of the two nations are making enormous efforts to merge the biggest enterprises of the Franco-German industrial alliance, it is interesting to note that once united the Franco-German enterprises often rise to world leadership in their respective fields.
- European Space Agency (with many other European states)
- EADS (with two CEOs)
- Airbus (also present in the UK and Spain)
Franco-German collaborative enterprises include;
- Promotion of French and German language in both countries (See Alsace).
- Creation of a joint Franco-German History Coursebook to promote a "shared vision of History"
- Arte, Franco-German cultural TV-channel
- From its inception during the 1960s the Eurocorps has contained large contingents of French and German troops at its core, while other EU nations have contributed soldiers to the multinational force. As well as the Franco-German Brigade the remainder of the corps takes much of its infantry from France and much of its armour from Germany.
- List of Ambassadors of France to Germany
- Causes of World War II
- International relations (1814–1919)
- France–United Kingdom relations
- Germany–United Kingdom relations
- France–United States relations
- Germany–United States relations
- Foreign relations of France
- Foreign relations of Germany
- History of Europe
- Paris Peace Conference, 1919
Notes and references
- Ulrich Krotz, "Three eras and possible futures: a long-term view on the Franco-German relationship a century after the First World War," International Affairs (March 2014) 90#2 pp 337-350. online
- Les Français établis hors de France - Population française inscrite au 31 décembre 2012, France Diplomatie
- Répartition des étrangers par nationalité, Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques (Insee)
- J.F.V. Keiger, France and the World since 1870 (2001) pp 112-17
- "Treaty Heralded New Era in Franco-German Ties". Retrieved 2013-01-22.
- "French, German Presidents Mark World War I Anniversary". France News.Net. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- Albrecht-Carrié, René. A Diplomatic History of Europe Since the Congress of Vienna (1958), 736pp; basic survey
- Clark, Christopher. The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 (2013) excerpt and text search
- Hensel, Paul R. "The Evolution of the Franco-German Rivalry" pp 86–124 in William R. Thompson, ed. Great power rivalries (1999) online
- Keiger, J.F.V. France and the World since 1870 (2001), a wide ranging survey to the 1990s
- Langer, William. An Encyclopedia of World History (5th ed. 1973); highly detailed outline of events
- Langer, William. European Alliances and Alignments 1870-1890 (1950); advanced history
- Langer, William. The Diplomacy of Imperialism 1890-1902 (1950); advanced history
- MacMillan, Margaret. The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914 (2013)
- Rich, Norman. Great Power Diplomacy: 1814-1914 (1991), comprehensive survey
- Scheck, Raffael. “Lecture Notes, Germany and Europe, 1871–1945” (2008) full text online, a brief textbook by a leading scholar
- Steiner, Zara. The Triumph of the Dark: European International History, 1933–1939 (Oxford History of Modern Europe) (2011) 1236pp
- Taylor, A.J.P. Bismarck: The Man and the Statesman (1967) online edition
- Taylor, A.J.P. The Struggle for Mastery in Europe 1848–1918 (1954) 638pp; advanced history and analysis of major diplomacy
- Weinberg, Gerhard.The Foreign Policy of Hitler's Germany: Diplomatic Revolution in Europe, 1933-36 (v. 1) (1971); The Foreign Policy of Hitler's Germany: Starting World War II, 1937–1939 (vol 2) (University of Chicago Press, 1980) ISBN 0-226-88511-9.
- Wetzel, David. A Duel of Giants: Bismarck, Napoleon III, and the Origins of the Franco-Prussian War (2003)
- Young, Robert France and the Origins of the Second World War (1996)
- Baun, Michael J. "The Maastricht Treaty as High Politics: Germany, France, and European Integration." Political Science Quarterly (1996): 110#4 pp. 605-624 in JSTOR
- Friend, Julius W. The Linchpin: French-German Relations, 1950-1990. (Praeger, 1991)
- Friend, Julius Weis. Unequal Partners: French-German Relations, 1989-2000. (Greenwood 2001)
- Fryer, W. R. "The Republic and the Iron Chancellor: The Pattern of Franco-German Relations, 1871-1890," Transactions of the Royal Historical Society (1979) , Vol. 29, pp 169-185
- Gordon, Philip H. France, Germany and the Western Alliance. (Westview 1995) ISBN 0-8133-2555-2.
- Gunther, Scott. "A New Identity for Old Europe: How and Why the French Imagined Françallemagne in Recent Years." French Politics, Culture & Society (2011) 29#1
- Krotz, Ulrich. "Three eras and possible futures: a long-term view on the Franco-German relationship a century after the First World War," International Affairs (March 2014) 20#2 pp 337-350
- Krotz, Ulrich, and Joachim Schild. Shaping Europe: France, Germany, and Embedded Bilateralism from the Elysée Treaty to Twenty-First Century Politics (Oxford University Press, 2013)
- Krotz, Ulrich. "Regularized intergovernmentalism: France–Germany and beyond (1963–2009)." Foreign Policy Analysis (2010) 6#2 pp: 147-185.
- Krotz, Ulrich. Structure as Process: The Regularized Intergovernmentalism of Franco-German Bilateralism (Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University, 2002) online
- Krotz, Ulrich. "Social Content of the International Sphere: Symbols and Meaning in Franco-German Relations" (Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, 2002.) online
- Schild, Joachim. "Leadership in Hard Times: Germany, France, and the Management of the Eurozone Crisis." German Politics & Society (2013) 31#1 pp: 24-47.
- Sutton, Michael. France and the construction of Europe, 1944-2007: the geopolitical imperative (Berghahn Books, 2011)
- Ansbert Baumann (2003) Begegnung der Völker? Der Élysée-Vertrag und die Bundesrepublik Deutschland. Deutsch-französische Kulturpolitik von 1963 bis 1969. Frankfurt: Peter Lang, ISBN 3-631-50539-6.
- Ansbert Baumann (2002) Die organisierte Zusammenarbeit. Die deutsch-französischen Beziehungen am Vorabend des Élysée-Vertrags (1958–1962). Ludwigsburg: DFI compact, 1, ISSN 1619-8441.
- Corine Defrance, Ulrich Pfeil (2005) Der Élysée-Vertrag und die deutsch-französischen Beziehungen 1945–1963–2003. Munich: Oldenbourg, ISBN 3-486-57678-X.
- Corine Defrance, Ulrich Pfeil (2011) Eine Nachkriegsgeschichte in Europa 1945–1963 (= Deutsch-Französische Geschichte, Bd. 10). Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, Darmstadt, ISBN 978-3-534-14708-3.
- Corine Defrance, Ulrich Pfeil (2012) La France, l’Allemagne et le traité de l’Élysée, 1963–2013, Paris: CNRS, ISBN 978-2-271-07488-1.
- Corine Defrance, Ulrich Pfeil (2012) Entre guerre froide et intégration européenne. Reconstruction et rapprochement 1945–1963 (= Histoire franco-allemande, Bd. 10, Villeneuve d’Ascq, Septentrion, ISBN 978-2-7574-0344-0.
- Corine Defrance, Ulrich Pfeil (2013) 50 Jahre Deutsch-Französisches Jugendwerk / L’Office franco-allemand pour la jeunesse a 50 ans, hg. vom DFJW, Berlin, Paris, ISBN 978-2-36924-000-6.
- Franz Knipping, Ernst Weisenfeld (1988) Eine ungewöhnliche Geschichte. Deutschland – Frankreich seit 1870. Bonn: Europa-Union-Verlag, ISBN 3-7713-0310-9.
- Anne Kwaschik, Ulrich Pfeil (2013) Die DDR in den deutsch-französischen Beziehungen, Bruxelles, Peter Lang, 2013, ISBN 978-2-87574-074-8
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- France and Germany Celebrate 50 Years of Friendship (Spiegel Online interview with Jacques Delors and Joschka Fischer)
- Spanish irritation of excessive dominance of the EU agenda by France & Germany
- The Commissioner for Franco-German Cooperation
- La Gazette de Berlin The Newspaper in French for Germany (1 Page in German)
- The Franco-German Youth Office (FGYO)