Hi, This is shaping up to be a really good discussion. I don't think we are that far apart. Just a wee difference of understanding in the probable implications and consequences. Whilst the chain of command does appear complicated, it should not be seen as meaning people can't talk with one another. It is standard military proceedure to set up comms with neighbouring forces whatever the chain of command was. On 6 June Beauman with Karslake visited HQ 51 Division and discussed the situation with Fortune. It was at that meeting that the decision was made to place A Brigade under 51 Division. That evening a staff officer from HQ Beauman Div went to HQ X Armee to get permission to carry out preliminary demolitions. Altmayer, with Marshall-Cornwall present (probably doing the translation) refused. The following day, Marshall-Cornwall summoned Beauman to a meeting at X Armee HQ with Evans present. They discussed Hoth's XV advance on Rouen and its implications and considered a change to the command structure. The three, Marshall-Cornwall, Beauman and Evans decided against it. Also on the 7th, having been denied permission to start the demolitions by Altmayer the day before, the GSO1 from HQ Beauman set off to HQ 9e Corps to get permission from Ihler. He had to turn back because of enemy fire so didn't get the permission he wanted. What we have is a body of evidence that demonstrates that the various commands were actively communicating with one another irrespective of the laid down chain of command. That's exactly as I would expect it to be. Unless evidence exists that somebody within the Beauman Division decided to blow bridges against orders because they were French orders not British orders, I don't buy the complicated Anglo-French command structure as being the reason for Fortune not being up to speed on the 8th. It seems to me the reason lies entirely within the confines of Beauman Division decision-making. If Fortune had made a decision to withdraw of his own accord, he could have done so. London could have ordered him to withdraw, directly or via Marshall-Cornwall, if they had chosen to do so. Marshall-Cornwall could have taken it upon himself. So could Karslake. They didn't. But, had any of those options been implemented, it would be - as you wrote - "cut and run". British policy was to fight the Germans not "cut and run". Moreover, there is a presumption in the what if cut and run theory that events would have turned out better. Would they? Were the 51 Division to have cut and run to Le Havre on the 7th or 8th, they would simply be inviting one or more of Hoth's divisions onto them directly from the 9th onwards. Most of the BEF falling back to Dunkirk managed to evacuate successfully because a significant body of French remained behind to defend the evacuation. At Le Havre, whose going to hold the perimeter? I am turned off Saul David's book by its title. The remnants of 9e CA at St. Valery were victims of circumstance. They were not "sacrificed" by anybody and an analysis of the historical reality would suggest there was little chance for a better outcome. Being motorized, the 51 Division had the capability to "cut and run" unlike the French formations alongside them. They could exploit the advantage of mobility at the expense of the largly immobile French. But if "cut and run" was to be policy or the 'normal' go to decision, why bother to be there in the first place?