France in World War II: The History of Nazi Germany's Conquest of France and Its Liberation By the Allies, Charles River Editors
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France in World War II: The History of Nazi Germany's Conquest of France and Its Liberation By the Allies

Author: Charles River Editors

Narrator: Bill Caufield

Unabridged: 6 hr 13 min

Format: Digital Audiobook

Publisher: Findaway Voices

Published: 07/21/2023

Genre: History - Military - World War Ii


One of the most famous people in the world came to tour the city of Paris for the first time on June 28, 1940. Over the next three hours, he rode through the city’s streets, stopping to tour L’Opera Paris. He rode down the Champs-Elysees toward the Trocadero and the Eiffel Tower, where he had his picture taken. After passing through the Arc de Triomphe, he toured the Pantheon and old medieval churches, though he did not manage to see the Louvre or the Palace of Justice. Heading back to the airport, he told his staff, “It was the dream of my life to be permitted to see Paris. I cannot say how happy I am to have that dream fulfilled today.” Four years after his tour, Adolf Hitler would order the city’s garrison commander, General Dietrich von Choltitz, to destroy Paris, warning his subordinate that the city "must not fall into the enemy's hand except lying in complete debris."

Of course, Paris was not destroyed before the Allies liberated it, but it would take more than 4 years for them to wrest control of France from Nazi Germany after they took the country by storm in about a month in 1940. That said, it’s widely overlooked today given how history played out that as the power of Nazi Germany grew alarmingly during the 1930s, the French sought means to defend their territory against the rising menace of the Thousand-Year Reich. As architects of the most punitive measures in the Treaty of Versailles following World War I, France was a natural target for Teutonic retribution, so the Maginot Line, a series of interconnected strongpoints and fortifications running along much of France's eastern border, helped allay French fears of invasion.

After the fall of France, the Vichy Regime maintained a quasi-independent French nation for some time after the Third Reich invasion until the Germans decided to include it in their occupation zone.


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