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Liberation of Paris
Part of Operation Overlord
Crowds of French patriots line the Champs Elysees-edit2.jpg
Crowds of French people line the Champs Élysées to view the French 2e DB tanks and half tracks pass before the Arc de Triomphe on 26 August 1944.
Date 19 August 1944 – 25 August 1944
Location Paris and outskirts, France
Result Allied victory; propaganda boost for the re-established French Republic
Free French Forces French Resistance
 Free French Forces
 United States
Free French Forces Philippe Leclerc
Free French Forces Henri Rol-Tanguy
Free French Forces Jacques Chaban-Delmas
United States Raymond O. Barton
Nazi Germany Dietrich von CholtitzSurrendered
2nd French Armoured Division,
French Forces of the Interior,
4th U.S. Infantry Division
5,000 Inside Paris, 15,000 At outskirts
Casualties and losses
French Resistance:
1,500 dead[1]
Free French Forces:
130 dead
319 wounded[2]
United States : Unknown [3]
3,200 dead
12,800 prisoners[1]

The Liberation of Paris (also known as Battle for Paris) took place during World War II from 19 August 1944 until the surrender of the occupying German garrison on the 25th and is accounted as the last battle in the Campaign for Normandy and the transitional conclusion of the Allied invasion breakout in Operation Overlord into a broad-fronted general offensive. The capital region of France had been administered by Nazi Germany since the Second Compiègne armistice in June 1940 when Germany occupied the North and West of France and when the Vichy puppet regime was established with its capital in the central city of Vichy.

The liberation started with an uprising by the French Resistance against the German Paris garrison. On 24 August, the FFI resistances received backup from the Free French Army of Liberation and from the United States' 4th Infantry Division.

This battle marked the end of Operation Overlord, the liberation of France by the Allies, the restoration of the French Republic and the exile of the Vichy government to Sigmaringen in Germany.



Allied strategy emphasized destroying German forces retreating towards the Rhine, when the French Resistance (FFI) under Henri Rol-Tanguy staged an uprising in the French capital. Supreme Allied Commander Eisenhower did not consider Paris a primary objective; instead, American and British Allies wanted to enter Berlin before the Soviet Union's army and put an end to the conflict.[4] Moreover Eisenhower thought it too early for a battle in Paris; he wanted to prevent another battle of Stalingrad, and knew that Hitler had given orders to destroy Paris. In a siege, it was estimated 4,000 tons of food per day would be needed to supply the Parisians, plus effort to restore vital infrastructure including transport and energy supply. Such a task would require time and entire Allied divisions.[4]

However, Charles de Gaulle threatened to send his Free French 2nd Armored Division (2ème DB) into Paris single-handedly.

Paris was the prize in a contest for power within the French Resistance. The city was the hub of national administration and politics, the center of the railroad system, the communication lines and the highways. It was the only place from which the country could be governed. The overall aim of the Resistance, to get rid of the Germans, bound men of conflicting philosophies and interests together. But there were political differences among them. De Gaulle had organized the Resistance outside France to support his provisional government. But inside France, a large and vociferous contingent of the left contested de Gaulle’s leadership.

On 24 August, delayed by poor decision-making, combat and poor roads, Free French General Leclerc, commander of the 2nd Armored Division disobeyed his superior U.S. field commander general Omar Bradley and sent a vanguard (la colonne Dronne) to Paris, with the message that the entire division would be there the following day. Bradley reportedly said "OK, Leclerc, run into Paris...". The 9th Armoured Company, composed mainly by spanish veterans equiped with M4 Sherman tanks, M2 half-track and GMC trucks was commanded by Captain Raymond Dronne, who became one of the first uniformed Allied liberating officers to enter Paris.

Events timeline

As late as Aug. 11, nine French Jews were arrested by the French police in Paris. On Aug. 16, collaboration newspapers were still published. And although food was in short supply, sidewalk cafes were crowded.[5]

But, by August 18, more than half the railroad workers were on strike and the city was at a standstill. Virtually all the policemen had disappeared from the streets. Several anti-German demonstrations took place, and armed Resistance members appeared openly. The German reaction was less than forthright prompting small, local Resistance groups, without central direction or discipline, to take possession the very next day of police stations, town halls, national ministries, newspaper buildings and the Hôtel de Ville (city hall).[citation needed]

There were perhaps 20,000 Resistance members in Paris, but few were armed. Nevertheless, they destroyed road signs, punctured the tires of German vehicles, cut communication lines, bombed gasoline depots and attacked isolated pockets of German soldiers. But being inadequately armed, members of the Resistance feared open warfare. To avoid it, Resistance leaders persuaded Raoul Nordling, the Swedish consul-general in Paris, to negotiate with the German military governor of Gross Paris and commander of the Paris garrison, general Dietrich von Choltitz. That evening, August 19, the two men arranged a truce, at first for a few hours, then extended it indefinitely.[citation needed]

The arrangement was somewhat nebulous. Choltitz agreed to recognize certain parts of Paris as belonging to the Resistance. The Resistance, meanwhile, consented to leave particular areas of Paris free to German troops. But no boundaries were drawn, and neither the Germans nor the French were clear about their respective areas. The armistice expired on the 24th.[6]

General strike (15–18 August 1944)

On 15 August, in Pantin (the North-East suburb of Paris from where the Germans entered the capital back in June 1940), 2,200 men and 400 women—all political prisoners—were sent to the Buchenwald camp on the last convoy to Germany.[7][8]

With the Free French Allies rapidly advancing on Paris, the Paris Métro, Gendarmerie and Police went on strike the same day, followed by postal workers on 16 August. They were joined by workers across the city when a general strike broke out on 18 August, the day on which all Parisians were ordered to mobilize by the French Forces of the Interior.[citation needed]

On 16 August, 35 young FFI members were betrayed by a Vichist agent of the Gestapo. They went to a rendez-vous in the Bois de Boulogne, near the waterfall, and were executed by the Germans. They were machine-gunned and then finished off by grenades.[9]

On 17 August, concerned that explosives were being placed at strategic points around Paris by the Germans, Pierre Taittinger, chairman of the municipal council, met Choltitz .[10] On being told that Choltitz intended to slow up as much as possible the Allied advance, Taittinger, along with Nordling, attempted to persuade Choltitz not to destroy Paris.[11]

FFI uprising (19–23 August 1944)

Some German light tanks (originally French) are captured and used against the enemy, 19 August.

On 19 August, columns of German military tanks, half-tracks, trucks dragging a trailer and cars loaded with troops and material moved down the Champs Elysees. The rumor of the Allies' advance toward Paris was growing.

The streets were deserted following the German retreat, when suddenly the first skirmishes between French irregulars and the German occupiers started. Spontaneously some people went out in the streets and some FFI members posted propaganda posters on the walls. These posters focused on a general mobilization order, arguing "the war continues", with a call to the Parisian police, the Republican Guard, the Gendarmerie, the Gardes Mobiles, the G.M.R. (Groupe Mobile de Réserve, the police units replacing the army), the jailkeepers, the patriotic French, "all men from 18 to 50 able to carry a weapon" to join "the struggle against the invader". Other posters were assuring "victory is near" and a "chastisement for the traitors", i.e., the Vichy loyalists. The posters were signed by the "Parisian Committee of the Liberation" in agreement with the Provisional Government of the French Republic and under the orders of "Regional Chief Colonel Rol", aka Henri Rol-Tanguy, commander of the French Forces of the Interior.

As the battle raged, some small mobile units of Red Cross moved in the city to assist French and German injured. Later that day three French Resistants were executed by the Germans.[citation needed]

FFI and Free Republic of Vercors marked captured truck.

The same day in Pantin, a barge filled with mines exploded and destroyed the Great Windmills.[8]

Resistants standing behind a barricade, 20 August

On 20 August, barricades began to appear and resistants organized themselves to sustain a siege. Trucks were positioned, trees cut and trenches dug in the pavement to free paving stones for consolidating the barricades. These materials were transported by men, women, children and old people using wooden carts. Fuel trucks were attacked and captured, other civilian vehicles like the Citroën Traction Avant sedan captured, painted with camouflage and marked with the FFI emblem. The Resistance would use them to transport ammunition and orders from one barricade to another.[citation needed]

Fort de Romainville, a Nazi prison in the outskirts of Paris, was liberated. From October 1940, the Fort held only female prisoners (resistants and hostages), who were jailed, executed or redirected to the camps. At liberation in August 1944, many abandoned corpses were found in the Fort's yard.[citation needed]

Some FFI firing during a skirmish, one of them wears the French Army traditional Adrian helmet, 19 August

A temporary ceasefire between General Dietrich von Choltitz, commander of the Paris garrison, and a part of the French Resistance was brokered by Raoul Nordling (the Swedish consul general in Paris). Both sides needed time; the Germans wanted to strengthen their weak garrison with front-line troops, and Resistance leaders wanted to strengthen their positions in anticipation of battle (the resistance lacked ammunition for any prolonged fight).[citation needed]

The German garrison held most of the main monuments and some strongpoints, the Resistance most of the city. Germans lacked numbers to go on the offensive, and the Resistance lacked heavy weapons to attack those strongpoints.[citation needed]

Skirmishes reached their height of intensity on the 22nd when some Germans units tried to leave their strongpoints. On 23 August 9:00AM under von Choltitz' orders, the Germans burned the Grand Palais, an FFI stronghold, and Tanks fired against the barricades in the streets. Hitler gave the order to inflict maximum damage on the city.[12]

It is estimated that around 1,500 resistance members and civilians were killed during the battle for Paris.[citation needed]

Entrance of the 2nd Armored Division and 4th US Infantry division (24–25 August)

On the following morning, the official day of liberation, an enormous crowd of joyous Parisians welcomed the arrival of the 2nd French Armored Division, which swept the western part of Paris, including the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs Elysées, while the Americans cleared the eastern part. The Germans had melted away during the previous night. Two thousand of them remained in the Bois de Boulogne, and 700 more were in the Luxembourg Gardens. But most had fled or simply awaited capture.[13]

The battle cost the Free French 2nd Armored Division 71 KIA, 225 wounded, 35 tanks, 6 self-propelled guns, and 111 vehicles, which is "a rather high ratio of losses for an armoured division" according to historian Jacques Mordal.[14]

German Surrender (25 August)

High ranking German officers seized by Free French troops which liberated their country's capital are lodged in the hotel Majestic, headquarters for the Wehrmacht in the days of the Nazi occupation. Paris, France, August 26, 1944.

Despite repeated orders from Hitler that the French capital "must not fall into the enemy's hand except lying in complete debris" this to be accomplished by bombing it and blowing up its bridges,[15] German General Dietrich von Choltitz, the commander of the Paris garrison and military governor of Paris surrendered on 25 August at the Hotel Meurice, newly established headquarters of General Leclerc. Von Choltitz was kept prisoner until April 1947. In his memoir ... Brennt Paris? ("Is Paris Burning?"), first published in 1950, von Choltitz describes himself as the saviour of Paris.

On 19 August three resistors were executed by the Germans.
On 23 August The Grand Palais is set on fire.

There is a controversy about von Choltitz's actual role during the battle, since he is regarded in totally different ways in France and Germany. In Germany, he is regarded as a humanist and a hero who saved Paris from urban warfare and destruction. In 1964, Dietrich von Choltitz explained in an interview taped from his Baden Baden home, why he had refused to obey Hitler: "If for the first time I had disobeyed, it was because I knew that Hitler was insane" ("Si pour la première fois j'ai désobéi, c'est parce que je savais qu'Hitler déraisonnait")". According to a 2004 interview his son Timo gave to the French public channel France 2, von Choltitz disobeyed Hitler and personally allowed the Allies to take the city back safely and rapidly, preventing the French Resistance from engaging in urban warfare that would have destroyed parts of Paris. He knew the war was lost and decided alone to save the capital.[16]

However in France, this version is seen as a "falsification of History" since von Choltitz is regarded as a Nazi officer faithful to Hitler involved in many controversial actions such as:

  • In 1940 and 1941, he gave the orders to destroy Sevastopol and burn Rotterdam.[16]
  • During the battle for Paris:
    • On 23 August he ordered the burning of the Grand Palais occupied by FFI resistance.[16]
    • On 19 August he ordered the destruction of the Pantin great windmills in order to starve the population.[16]
    • On 16 August he ordered the execution of 35 members of the resistance at the Bois de Boulogne waterfall.[16]
American soldiers watch as the Tricolor flies from the Eiffel Tower again, 25 August 1944.

In a 2004 interview, Parisian Resistance veteran Maurice Kriegel-Valrimont describes von Choltitz as a man who "for as long as he could, killed French and, when he ceased to kill them, it was because he wasn't able to do so any longer". Kriegel-Valrimont argues "not only do we owe him nothing, but this a shameless falsification of History, to award him any merit."[16] The Libération de Paris documentary secretly shot during the battle by the Resistance brings evidence of bitter urban warfare that contradicts the von Choltitz father and son version. Despite this, the Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre novel Is Paris Burning? and its 1966 film adaptation emphasize Von Choltitz as the saviour of Paris.

A third source, the protocols of telephonic conversations between von Choltitz and his superiors found later in the Fribourg archives and their analysis by German historians support Kriegel-Valrimont's theory.[11]

Also, Pierre Taittinger and Raoul Nordling both claim it was they who convinced von Choltitz not to destroy Paris as ordered by Hitler[11]. The first published a book in 1984 describing this episode, Paris ne fut pas détruit (... and Paris Wasn't Destroyed), which earned him a prize from the French Academy.[citation needed]

German losses are estimated at about 3,200 killed and 12,800 prisoners of war.[citation needed]

De Gaulle's speech (25 August)

French Resistance snipers using captured firearms, 19 August.
FFI using rifles, these were called "the soldiers without uniform", 19 August

On the same day, Charles de Gaulle, president of the Provisional Government of the French Republic moved back into the War Ministry on the rue Saint-Dominique, then made a rousing speech to the population from the Hôtel de Ville.

Why do you desire that we hide the emotion which seizes us all, men and women, who are here, at home, in Paris that stood up to liberate itself and that succeeded in doing this with its own hands?

No! We will not hide this deep and sacred emotion. These are minutes which go beyond each of our poor lives. Paris! Outraged Paris! Broken Paris! Martyred Paris! But liberated Paris! Liberated by itself, liberated by its people with the help of the French armies, with the support and the help of all France, of the France that fights, of the only France, of the real France, of the eternal France!

Well! Since the enemy which held Paris has capitulated into our hands, France returns to Paris, to her home. She returns bloody, but quite resolute. She returns there enlightened by the immense lesson, but more certain than ever of her duties and of her rights.

I speak of her duties first, and I will sum them all up by saying that for now, it is a matter of the duties of war. The enemy is staggering, but he is not beaten yet. He remains on our soil.

It will not even be enough that we have, with the help of our dear and admirable Allies, chased him from our home for us to consider ourselves satisfied after what has happened. We want to enter his territory as is fitting, as victors.

This is why the French vanguard has entered Paris with guns blazing. This is why the great French army from Italy has landed in the South and is advancing rapidly up the Rhone valley. This is why our brave and dear forces of the interior are going to arm themselves with modern weapons. It is for this revenge, this vengeance and justice, that we will keep fighting until the last day, until the day of total and complete victory.

This duty of war, all the men who are here and all those who hear us in France know that it demands national unity. We, who have lived the greatest hours of our History, we have nothing else to wish than to show ourselves, up to the end, worthy of France. Long live France!

Victory parades (26 & 29 August)

An American M8 armored scout car in front of the Arc de Triomphe at the "Victory Day" parade on 29 August 1944. (NARA)
28th Infantry Division marching down the Champs Élysées on 29 August 1944, in the "Victory Day" parade (photo US Army Signal Corps)

This was followed on 26 August by a victory parade down the Champs-Élysées, with some German snipers still active. According to a famous anecdote, while de Gaulle was marching down the Champs Élysées and entered the Place de la Concorde, snipers in the Hôtel de Crillon area shot at the crowd. Someone in the crowd shouted "this is the Fifth Column!" leading to a misunderstanding, as a 2nd Armored Division tank operator shot at the Hôtel's actual fifth column (which, after repairs, has a slightly different color.)[citation needed]

A combined Franco-American military parade was organised on the 29th after the arrival of the U.S. Army's 28th Infantry Division. Joyous crowds greeted the Armée de la Libération and the Americans as liberators, as their vehicles drove down the city streets.


AMGOT exit

General Omar Bradley, Dwight D. Eisenhower, General Marie Pierre Kœnig and Air Marshal Arthur Tedder in liberated Paris (1944)

From the French point of view, the liberation of Paris by the French themselves rather than by the Allies saved France from a new constitution imposed by the Allied Military Government for Occupied Territories (AMGOT) like the contemporary ones established in Germany and Japan in 1945.[17]

A 100-franc note made in America and distributed in Normandy in June 1944.

The AMGOT administration for France was planned by the American Chief of Staff, but de Gaulle's opposition to Eisenhower's strategy, namely moving to the East as soon as possible without passing by Paris in order to reach Berlin before Stalin's Red Army, led to the 2nd Armored Division breakout toward Paris and the liberation of the French capital.[18] A signal of the French AMGOT's high status was the new French currency, called "Flag Money" (monnaie drapeau), for it featured the French flag on its back. This had been made in America and was distributed as replacement for Vichy currency since June 1944, following the successful Operation Overlord in Normandy. However, after the liberation of Paris, this short lived currency was forbidden by GPRF President Charles de Gaulle, who claimed these US dollar standard notes were fakes.

National Unity

Urban warfare scene, in the background a captured tank fires against a sniper position. 19 August

Another important factor was the popular uprising of Paris, which allowed the Parisians to liberate themselves from the Germans and gave the newly established Free French government and its president Charles de Gaulle enough prestige and authority to establish the Provisional Government of the French Republic. This replaced the fallen Vichy French State (1940–1944) and united the politically divided French Resistance, drawing anarchists, communists, Gaullists and nationalists into a new "national unanimity" government established on 9 September 1944.[17]

In his speech, de Gaulle insisted on the role played by the French and on the necessity for the French people to do their "duty of war" in the Allies' last campaigns to complete the liberation of France and to advance into Benelux and Germany. De Gaulle wanted France to be among "the victors" in order to evade the AMGOT threat. Two days later on 28 August the FFI, then called "the combatants without uniform", were incorporated in the New French Army (nouvelle armée française) which was fully equipped with U.S. equipment (uniform, helmet, weapon and vehicles) until after the Algerian War in the 1960s.

World War II victor

Allied Occupation Zones in Germany in 1946 after territorial annexations in the East

A point of strong disagreement between de Gaulle and the Big Three was that the President of the Provisional Government of the French Republic (GPRF), established on 3 June 1944, was not recognized as the legitimate representative of France. Even though de Gaulle had been recognized as the leader of Free France by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill back in 28 June 1940, his GPRF presidency had not resulted from democratic elections. However, three months after the liberation of Paris and one month after the new "unanimity government", the Big Three recognized the GPRF on 23 October 1944.[19][20]

In his liberation of Paris speech de Gaulle argued "It will not be enough that, with the help of our dear and admirable Allies, we have got rid of him from our home for us to be satisfied after what happened. We want to enter his territory as it should be, as victors", clearly showing his ambition that France be considered one of the World War II victors just like the Big Three. This perspective was not shared by the western Allies, as was demonstrated in the German Instrument of Surrender's First Act [21]. The French occupation zones in Germany and in West Berlin concretized this ambition, leading to some frustration, part of the deeper Western betrayal sentiment, on the part of similar European Allies, especially Poland, whose proposition that they be part of the occupation of Germany was rejected by the Soviets, the latter taking the view that they had liberated the Poles from the Nazis and thus put them under the influence of the USSR.

Legal purge

Several Vichy loyalists involved in the Vichy Milice - which was established by Sturmbannführer Joseph Darnand and hunted the Resistance with the Gestapo — were made prisoners in a post-liberation purge known as the Épuration légale (Legal purge). However, some were executed without a trial, and the women accused of "horizontal collaboration" were arrested, shaved, exhibited and sometimes mauled by the crowds, because of their sexual relationships with German officers during the occupation.

On 17 August 1944 Pierre Laval was moved to Belfort by the Germans. On 7 September, evading the Allies' advance in western France and toward Berlin, Philippe Pétain and 1,000 of his followers (including Louis-Ferdinand Céline) moved to Sigmaringen, a French enclave in Germany. There they established the government of Sigmaringen challenging the legitimacy of de Gaulle's Provisional Government of the French Republic. When Laval's government relocated to Sigmaringen, there were 2 million French living in Germany. Most of them were forced workers sent there by the STO service (Service du Travail Obligatoire, "compulsory work service")[22] established according to the 1940 armistice. As a sign of protest Pétain, who was forced to move by the Germans, refused to take office but was eventually replaced by Fernand de Brinon. The Vichy government in exile ended in April 1945.

"Yesterday Strasbourg, tomorrow Saigon..."

Leclerc's 2nd Armored Division arms featuring the cross of Lorraine.

Leclerc, whose 2nd Armored Division was held by the French in high regard, led the Expeditionary Forces FEFEO that sailed to French Indochina then occupied by the Japanese in 1945.

FEFEO recruiting posters depicted a Sherman tank painted with the cross of Lorraine with the caption "Yesterday Strasbourg, tomorrow Saigon, join in!" as a reference to the 1944 liberation of Paris by Leclerc's armored division and the role this unit played later in the liberation of Strasbourg. The war effort for the liberation of French Indochina through the FEFEO was presented in propaganda as the continuation of the liberation of France and part of the same "duty of war".

While Vichy France collaborated with Japan in French Indochina after the 1940 invasion and later established a Japan embassy in Sigmaringen[22], de Gaulle had declared war on Japan on 8 December 1941 following the attack on Pearl Harbor and created local anti-Japanese resistance units called Corps Léger d'Intervention (CLI) in 1943. On 2 September 1945 General Leclerc signed the armistice with Japan on behalf of the Provisional Government of the French Republic onboard the USS Missouri.


The 60th anniversary in 2004 was notable for the two military parades reminiscent of the 26 August and 29 August 1944 parades and featuring armoured vehicles from the era. One parade represented the French, one the Americans, while people danced in the streets to live music outside the Hôtel de Ville city hall.

Homage to the liberation martyrs

The wall of the 35 martyrs, Bois de Boulogne, Paris (2007)
An early scene from La Libération de Paris, a German truck passes by the Kommandantur on 19 August.

On 16 May 2007, following his election as President of the Fifth French Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy organized an homage to the 35 French Resistance martyrs executed by the Germans on 16 August 1944 during the liberation of Paris. French historian Max Gallo narrated the events that occurred in the Bois de Boulogne woods, and a Parisian schoolgirl read young French resistant Guy Môquet's (17) final letter. During his speech, President Sarkozy announced this letter would be now read in all French schools to remember the resistance spirit.[23][24] Following the speech, the chorale of the French Republican Guard closed the homage ceremony by singing the French Resistance's anthem Le Chant des Partisans ("the partisans' song"). Shortly following this occasion, the new President traveled to Berlin to meet German chancellor Angela Merkel as a symbol of the Franco-German reconciliation.

La Libération de Paris

La Libération de Paris ("the liberation of Paris"), whose original title was l'insurrection Nationale inséparable de la Libération Nationale ("the national insurrection inseparable from the national liberation"), was a short documentary secretly shot from 16 August to 27 August by the French Resistance propaganda. It was released in French theatres on 1 September 1944.


Liberation of Paris notables


2nd Armored Division

Free French

Paris garrison


See also


  1. ^ a b Libération de Paris
  2. ^ History Channel: The Lost evidence-Liberation of Paris
  3. ^ Libération de Paris forces américaines
  4. ^ a b Les Cahiers Multimédias: Il y a 60 ans : la Libération de Paris, Gérard Conreur/Mémorial du Maréchal Leclerc et de la Libération de Paris, Radio France official website, 6 July 2004
  5. ^ New York Times
  6. ^
  7. ^ Pantin official website
  8. ^ a b Pantin official website
  9. ^ Allocution du Président de la République lors de la cérémonie d’hommage aux martyrs du Bois de Boulogne., President Nicolas Sarkozy, French Presidency official website, 16 May 2007
  10. ^ ... et Paris Ne Fut Pas Detruit (... and Paris wasn't destroyed), Pierre Taittinger, L'Elan, 1946
  11. ^ a b c Will Paris be destroyed?, documentary by Michael Busse and Maria-Rosa Bobbi, Arte/WDR/France 3/TSR, August 2004
  12. ^ Libération de Paris: Balises 1944 ,L'Humanité, 23 August 2004
  13. ^
  14. ^ La Bataille de France 1944–1945, Jacques Mordal, Arthaud, 1964]
  15. ^ "... Brennt Paris?". Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  16. ^ a b c d e f ""Libération" porte parole des gauchistes". INA archives. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  17. ^ a b 1944–1946 : La Libération, Charles de Gaulle foundation official website
  18. ^ 1944-1946 : La Libération, Charles de Gaulle foundation official website
  19. ^ 1940–1944 : La France Libre et la France Combattante pt.2, Charles de Gaulle foundation official website
  20. ^ 1940–1944 : La France Libre et la France Combattante pt.1, Charles de Gaulle foundation official website
  21. ^ France excluded from the German capitulation signing by the Western Allies — Reims Academy
  22. ^ a b Die Finsternis (The Darkness), Thomas Tielsch, Filmtank Hamburg/ZDF, 2005
  23. ^ President Nicolas Sarkozy's speech (English), French Presidency official website, 16 May 2007
  24. ^ Max Gallo's ceremony (video), French Presidency official website, 16 May 2007

External links

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