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I`m not understanding " the miricle of dunkirk"

"With German troops pressing from all sides the Allied troops were forced to the Channel with the sea as the only hope of escape. Then came the "miracle of Dunkirk." Between May 27 and June 4 almost 350,000 men, mainly of the British Expeditionary Force, were evacuated across the Channel to England in every kind of vessel that would float from freighters to fishing boats. One final attempt by Canadian and British troops to maintain a "toe-hold" in France by forming a fortress area in the peninsula of Britanny also had to be abandoned. While the forced withdrawal at Dunkirk and the loss of weapons and equipment was undoubtedly a disaster, the heroic rescue of so many raised the morale of the now threatened British people."

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