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France in the dark years

Resistance movements in France and German repression

Men and women gather around a newspaper or a political party, before structuring the movements and networks.

During the summer of 1940, the first acts of resistance against occupying forces were committed by isolated individuals. By gradually gathering together into movements and networks, the resistance was able to define key objectives such as fighting the occupier, blocking collaboration policies and preparing first for liberation, then for the future of the country.

A gallery presents a timeline of the resistance movement and its key figures like General de Gaulle and Jean Moulin, as well as some examples of actions carried out by this bunch of anonymous people. These actions included intelligence operations, saving persecuted Jews, attacks against the Germans and the collaborationists, as well as sabotage and guerrilla operations run from the Maquis shrubland of southeastern France.

Let us not forget the help they gave Allied soldiers parachuting into France or the information they broadcast to the people through tracts and the thousand leaflets published by their underground press. Finally, the exhibition covers the role of Free France, the name given to the movement created by General de Gaulle after his appeal on BBC airwaves on 18 June 1940.