2009, Herbert R. Reginbogin, Detlev F. Vagts, Faces of Neutrality: A Comparative Analysis of the Neutrality of Switzerland, page 191:
In the spring of 1940 Germany occupied France, Belgium and the Netherlands.
to take possession of (but not necessarily keep)
1940, in The China monthly review, volumes 94-95, page 370 :
The Japanese can occupy but cannot hold, and what they can hold they cannot hold long, was the opinion of General Pai Chung-hsi, Chief of the General Staff of the Chinese Army, […]
1975, Esmé Cecil Wingfield-Stratford, King Charles and King Pym, 1637-1643, page 330 :
Rupert, with his usual untamable energy, was scouring the country — but at first in the wrong direction, that of Aylesbury, another keypoint in the outer ring of Oxford defences, which he occupied but could not hold.
1983, Arthur Keppel-Jones, Rhodes and Rhodesia: The White Conquest of Zimbabwe, 1884-1902, page 462:
One of the rebel marksmen, who had taken up position on a boulder, was knocked off it by the recoil of his weapon every time he fired. Again the attack achieved nothing. Positions were occupied, but could not be held.
2006, John Michael Francis, Iberia and the Americas: Culture, Politics, and History, page 496:
Spain occupied, but could not populate, and its failure to expand Florida led Britain to consider the peninsula a logical extension of its colonial holdings.