The liberation of France during World War II was represented by the entry of the allied forces to its capital, Paris; event that took place in August 1944; discover the most impressive moments of this relevant event of great historical interest and more.
Liberation of France
The battle that led to the liberation of Paris and therefore most of the French territory began with an uprising by the citizens who formed their resistance, which had the support of many collaborators and supporters abroad.
They were joined by the Third Army of the United States, through its historic Leclerc Division as well as its Infantry Division.
Combining forces in this contest were joined by many exiled Republican Spaniards, with prominent roles; Therefore, the first allied military units to confront the Germans in Paris were made up of former supporters of the Popular Republican Army, headed by Amado Granel.
This notable Spanish soldier of the 20th century stood out not only fighting Nazi Germany during World War II, but also previously participated in the Spanish Civil War, which took place between the years of 1036 and 1939.
Continuing with our theme on the Liberation of France; At that time, Granel was serving as a lieutenant in the French army and was still a former major in the militias of the Popular Republican Army; for which he commanded a mixed brigade.
The strategic situation of Germany in those years was based on the destruction of Parisian bridges and monuments; in addition to following a policy of ruthless mistreatment against any type of resistance on the part of the population; seeking by all means to fight in Paris against any man who would not allow them to create their Stalingrad on the Western Front.
The Parisian resistance for its part was led by Henri Rol-Tanguy, a communist chief of the FFI on the island of France; although poorly equipped and without means that would allow adequate radio communication with the outside world.
However, he was motivated to support the popular insurrection and quickly surround the nuclei of the German advance.
After the advance of the allies became known, their supporters sympathized with them; declaring a general strike for August 18, 1944, which led to erecting barricades to hinder the movement of German vehicles, at the same time as consecutive armed clashes.
All this plus movements in charge of the divisions of the army of the United States, was laying the bases of the liberation of France; although the fighting was heavy, German resistance was crushed.
On August 25, 1944, the soldiers of the 2nd DB entered Paris through the Orleans gate; while the troops of La Nueve, made up of 144 Spaniards under the command of Granell with tanks and light vehicles, lent him support to reinforce the members of the French Interior Forces who were defending the city in front of the Paris City Hall.
Victory was achieved despite the fact that Germany still had a large garrison and at that moment “La Marseillesa” began to be heard in all corners of Parias, being sung by all its citizens, while the bells of the churches in the city rang. .
The onslaught of the allied forces was backed by different flanks such as the entry of the fourth US infantry division through the Italian gate; while the representatives of the German General Staff were prisoners.
That same August 25, Charles de Gaulle, as head of the provisional government of the French Republic, delivered a transcendental speech on Saint-Dominique street, from which the following paragraph is quoted:
Paris outraged! Shattered Paris! Paris martyred! But Paris has been liberated, liberated by itself, liberated by its people, with the collaboration of the armies of France, with the support and collaboration of the whole of France, of a fighting France, of the only France, of the true France. of eternal France.
Ordering the next day an emotional parade as a victory celebration through the Champs Elysées, the main avenue of Paris.