When The Thirty Years' War broke out in 1618 the French were initially unsure what side to support. On the one hand they had always hated the House of Habsburg, so should support the Protestant powers (and Louis's father Henry IV of France was once a Huguenot leader). On the other hand Louis XIII had had a strict religious Catholic upbringing and his natural inclination was therefore to support the Catholic Holy Roman Emperor, the Habsburg Ferdinand II.
Louis started cracking down on the Hugenots and their silly hats, which kicked off The Huguenot rebellions, the first since the French Wars of Religion of 1562–1598. The rebellion led to major military encounters which ended in defeat for the Huguenots: the Siege of Montauban in 1621, the Naval battle of Saint-Martin-de-Ré on 27 October 1622, the Capture of Ré island in 1625, and the Siege of La Rochelle in 1627-1628 which became an international conflict with the involvement of England in the Anglo-French War (1627-1629). All this meant that they were too busy to actually intervene in the real Thirty Years War until 1635.
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