The liberation of Paris in 1944 predicted the end of World War II. The triumph of freedom over the Nazi totalitarianism was celebrated in an impressive parade through the city. Now we can relive those moments with excellent color snapshots. Want to see pictures of the moment?
On the 21st of August, the French Resistance, specifically Parisian Liberation Committee, launched an appeal to Parisians to get to the Allies. Starting from their positions in Argentan, the French attack was made without receiving air support from allied aircraft, being received in the midst of an explosion of joy in the suburbs popular with French citizens celebrating in the streets, contributing to delay of the advance of troops, and hampered by the occupation of the streets of towns and cities. In fact, Paris had been waiting for the Americans for two months already. The initial shock was followed by an unspeakable pride, with the masses occupying the streets and climbing on cars, while the tricolor flags were being waved everywhere.
Amado Granell said:
“Civilians rushed upon us. Applause, cheers… Forever and always kisses flowers. The French wine bottles were emptied over our heads as pagan baptism.”
The next day, August 26th, a victory parade was organized down the Champs Elysees. The enthusiastic crowd greeted the American and French soldiers. De Gaulle wanted to make sure the lead, leaving the background to the members of the Resistance in the city. The ceremony of thanksgiving in the Cathedral of Notre Dame was upset by an exchange of gunfire, as the resistant interviewed believed they had snipers in the cathedral. The population was protected in the street after the vehicles of the 2nd Armored Division. However, de Gaulle remained imperturbable, walking down the street or moving inside the cathedral.
To recapitulate, Amado Granell said:
“It took more work to win the admiration of the Parisians than the German resistance.”