France fell to Hitler’s forces in less than two months. It was not until 1942 that widely dispersed underground organizations would band together to form a united opposition to the occupying Germans. It was not until then that resistance would become the Resistance – a disciplined multi-national movement that would play a significant part in the outcome of World War II.
In each occupied nation, resistance groups would grow, gathering and sending information to London, planning increasingly complex sabotage operations, and assisting thousands of people, particularly Jews, in fleeing Nazi-occupied territories. Their actions would eventually become a focused counteroffensive against the German army in 1944, when Allied troops gathered in Great Britain to prepare for the invasion of France. As their widespread activity weakened German outposts in France and other occupied countries, the Allies would gain the foothold they needed to win the war. This is their story.