World War 2


Footage of Chaotic Warzone as Frenchmen in Street Clothes Defeat Nazi Occupiers

No Known Restrictions: Liberation of Paris on August 25, 1944 (LOC)

Footage of Chaotic Warzone as Frenchmen in Street Clothes Defeat Nazi Occupiers

The Nazi occupiers of Paris couldn’t have seen the uprising that kicked off the Battle of Paris coming. After four long years of brutal Axis occupation, the Allies were making headway into mainland Europe. The French Resistance had chafed under Nazi occupation for too long and started making their moves without Allied support.

The Battle of Paris

Nazi Occupiers
While the war wasn’t over yet, the liberation of Europe was an important step in stopping the Nazi threat.

The Nazi occupiers of Paris had made the City of Lights their home for the last four years. Time’s passage had left a deep resentment and growing hatred toward the Nazis, which helped to drive membership to the French Resistance.

An Occupied City

Nazi Occupiers
Despite the glaringly strange sight of Germans signs in France, this wasn’t an uncommon occurrence in Nazi-occupied countries.

The Battle of Paris is one of the more fascinating battles of World War 2. While most of Europe had Nazi occupiers, Paris followed in Warsaw’s footsteps and started a civilian uprising.

An Alien Home

Nazi Occupiers
The French Resistance was one of the largest partisan movements in the entire world at this point in time.

Aside from the Third Reich flags flying everywhere, one thing you’ll notice the Nazi occupiers have accomplished is the changing signage. The language used is German, with no regard or care given as to whether the native people can speak it.

Average People

Nazi Occupiers
While the Resistance was armed, what they had paled in comparison to the German occupiers.

The Nazi occupiers of Paris wouldn’t be met with American, British, or Free French troops in the opening stages of the battle. Instead, it was the French Resistance. While they were fierce and resourceful, Germany had a well-honed war machine in 1944.

Making It Count

Nazi Occupiers
A motley assortment of men and women took up arms to liberate their city from tyranny.

Despite the lack of resources on the French Resistance’s side, they still took up arms. The Nazi occupiers of France were still going through the Allied offensive to the south, but a surprise was waiting for them.

Ready for War

Nazi Occupiers
Resistance members would bear the brunt of casualties, but it was a resounding success nonetheless.

The French Resistance took position on the 19th of August, 1944. This would spark off 6 days of hellish fighting in the heart of France’s capital. It would end in a freed Paris, and France itself being restored to the Allies properly.

Dual Assaults

Liberation of France
The capture of heavy weaponry gave the Resistance an edge, however slight it might be.

The Nazi occupiers of Paris were cut off from their reinforcements at the start of the battle. The garrison was left at the mercy of the French Resistance as the Allied forces steamed forward from the south.

Lucky Breaks

Liberation of France
Surrendering Nazi officers was a common sight when the Allies pushed into Europe properly.

It was kill or be killed in the streets of Paris, and the French Resistance scored early wins. The material difference was vast, but the Nazi occupiers had heavy weaponry like artillery pieces which were quickly seized.

Effective Fire

Liberation of France
Despite minimal formal training, the French Resistance waged urban warfare with the best of them.

Small arms fire and shelling made a mess of the Nazi occupiers stationed in the police station in this footage. This was a crucial step toward ensuring the rest of the city’s liberation would go without a snag.


National Archives and Records Administration
The lack of French police operating with Nazi soldiers made the opening stages of the Liberation of Paris a resounding success.

One of the most important things to happen during the Liberation of Paris was the local police standing down. While they could have easily cooperated with the Nazi occupiers, this made taking the police station an easier task. The French Resistance had a base of operations, and the Allies were coming with reinforcements.

Continued Success

Liberation of France
The Third Reich’s flag was finally being tossed aside for France’s colors, a changing of the guard as it were.

While the Nazi occupiers of Europe wouldn’t leave easily, the French Resistance gained ground. Compared to the Warsaw Uprising, the Liberation of Paris had the full weight of the Allies behind it.

Watch the Full Video

Liberation of France
Rome was already liberated at this point, and with Paris, it meant the great cities of Europe were finally being set free.

If you want to see the incredible footage of the Liberation of Paris, you can view it here. As we approach the 80th anniversary of the battle, it is important to honor and remember the sacrifices of those who rose to cast off the yoke of tyranny.

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