French Resistance 1942-44


Map Code: Ax00338

The French Resistance gained a new level of coordination in 1942 as Jean Moulin, under the direction of Charles de Gaulle in London, was tasked with organizing the operations of various separate factions. The Americans supported an alternative leadership of French resistance under the Army Resistance Organization, leading to rivalry between the two groups. By 1943, the French Resistance had formed ties with the Maquis, a guerrilla group that consisted mainly of French men fleeing forced labour in Germany and hiding in the more remote rural areas of France. Together the various groups involved in the French Resistance carried out sabotage operations against factories and German rail infrastructure in France; in the first seven months of 1943 there were an average of 130 acts of sabotage against the French railways each month. In 1944, an estimated 100,000 people were involved in the French Resistance. In May 1944 alone the Resistance sent over 3,000 written reports to British intelligence in May 1944, an important part of the planning for the D-Day invasions.

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