Speer, Hitler, and sculptor Arno Breker in Paris, France, 23 Jun 1940

Caption     Speer, Hitler, and sculptor Arno Breker in Paris, France, 23 Jun 1940 ww2dbase
Photographer    Unknown
Source    ww2dbaseUnited States National Archives
Identification Code   242-HLB-5073-20
More on...   
Invasion of France and the Low Countries   Main article  Photos  Maps  
Adolf Hitler   Main article  Photos  
Albert Speer   Main article  Photos  
Photos on Same Day 23 Jun 1940
Photos at Same Place Paris, France
Added By C. Peter Chen

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
3 Mar 2009 03:47:26 PM

As a student of History, and only from a Historical Prospective did I stand in the same spot, when I went to Paris,France June 1967.
2. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
17 Jun 2010 03:23:35 PM

"The Three Hour Tour"

"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".

-Adolf Hitler-

Arrived La Bourget airfield, five-thirty in the morning the Mercedes sedans, with Hitler in the front seat drove on to Paris.
The motorcade drove down the Champs Elysees,
on to the Eiffel Tower, for photographs on to
the Arc de Triomphe and a visit to Napoleons
tomb, on to the Louvre, so much to see, so
little time to see it all.
The motorcade drove back to La Bourget,field
by nine o'clock in the morning, it was over
The three hour tour in Paris was over.

To read more, this account appears in:

Albert Speer's
Inside The Third Reich (1970)
Library of Congress Catalog Number 70-119132
Published by Avon Books
3. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
25 Dec 2010 10:51:21 AM

When the German Army marched into Paris on June 14, 1940 about half of Paris's five million people left the city.
By early 1942, Paris was the Headquarters of very German intelligence and police service
had thousands of informers and others who worked with the Germans, French men and women who turned against their own countrymen to work with and support the new order in Europe.

It was a dark side to French history over thousands were jailed and tortured over 12,000 jews were rounded up, seperated from their families and sent to Auschwitz such Collaborations angered many Frenchmen, who knew one day, things would change, but many just wanted to survive.


June 6, 1944 the Allies landed on Normandy
Paris had over 20,000 partisans and untold others working throughout the underground ready for Liberation.
4. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
4 Jun 2011 11:17:16 AM


13 Rue Madeleine was one of the many Gestapo address in wartime Paris.
The Germans took control over many of the fine hotels in Paris and used them for their headquarters, not only for the Gestapo, but also for the Army, Navy, SS, Abwehr and Luftwaffe.
The Gestapo's role in Paris was varied they hunted down Allied spies and collaborators and were assisted by the Abwehr, SS and the
French in operations, with brutal repression


Or known as the Carlingue was the name given to the French auxiliaries of the Gestapo that were active between 1941 to 1944. After the Liberation, its members were tried and condemmed.


Geheime Staatspolizei(German Secret State Police)this was abbreviated to Gestapo, by some unknown clerk, who's job was to shorten letterheads.

5. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
4 Jun 2011 12:30:46 PM

The SD/Sicherheitsdienst or Security Service
was the information service of the SS.
This organization was the first Nazi Party intelligence unit, to be established and was a sister organization within the Gestapo.
All the German intelligence agencies had information on Nazi Party menbers, Generals, Admirals, Citizens and members within its own agencies as well!


The SD worked with the Reich Kriminal Polizei
Kripo or Criminal Police. Agents and its informers were active in all the occupied countries and within Gemany.


Neutral countries knew of SD and other German agents as well as Allied agents that were working within its borders many were either arrested under pressure from both the Allies and Axis and deported.
Some countries looked the other way, others made token arrests some agents were even murdered by Axis or Allied agents to cover tracks, we'll never really know the true history about WWII.

Agents even killed their own suspected of working with the enemy, or covered their own tracks, as double agents. Others became
informers and collaborators working against
fellow countrymen.
Others worked for themselves selling vital information for money and profit, it was a shadow war, all the Allies, Neutral and Axis
countries operated agents.
6. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
5 Jul 2011 01:22:31 PM


German security forces were active in all the
occupied countries. Agents were infiltrated
into resistance or other groups with the help
of collaborators and informers.


Thousands were arrested without due process
shot, hung, tortured and imprisoned, others sent to Germany never to be heard from again.
Others were used as slave labor, sent to concentration or extermination camps.

The Gestapo had over 46,000 members along
with collaborators and informers. The SD and
Gestapo used torture to obtain information and confessions. The SD and the Gestapo were
part of a brutal and repressive system that sent millions to their deaths.
At the Nuremberg Trials, the entire organization was indicted and convicted of crimes against humanity. The Trials lasted from November 1945 to October 1946
7. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
13 Sep 2013 06:08:16 PM


Did you know that Adolf Hitler visited the old WWI
trenches of his Bavarian 16th Reserve Regiment
near Fromelles, France. Hitler was wounded around this area during the Battle of the Somme Nov.1916
Photo taken in 1940 after the Fall of France.
8. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
8 Apr 2014 09:07:44 PM


Frenchmen with German heritage could enlist in the Waffen-SS formations. Did you know that many of these men enlisted right after the fall of France in 1940 and the during the following occupation many of these soldiers, later served with the Totenkopf, Das Riech and Wiking Div.


One of the more famous enlistment stations, was located at 24 Avenue du Recteur-Poincare Paris, France. Men of all backgrounds volunteered from day labors, men who wanted to fight against the Communists, university students and those who were in it for the fight.


Volunteers were issued German Waffen-SS uniforms
and went through basic training was tough and many were killed before they ever fought an enemy. With the need for more troops, many of these men were later sent to the Eastern front, where they learned "On The Job Training".


Its been estimated that over 100,000 Frenchmen
collaborated with the Germans during WWII most never returned to France after the war, those that did were arrested as traitors, some were found out to be war criminals tried and put in jail, while others enlisted again, this time to serve with the French Foreign Legion after French
Military Intelligence weeded these men out.

About 35,000 Germans fought in Indochina after WWII, they were ex-Waffen-SS and German Army, many of these men died in French Indochina.
However, not all Frenchmen willingly enlisted in the German armed forces. In the occupied areas of Alsace and Lorraine they were drafted, these areas were annexed by Germany on August 1940.
9. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
11 Apr 2014 08:27:50 PM


After the Fall of France in 1940 the Nazis were able to occupy one zone, the northern-half of the country. In 1942 the other zone governed by the Vichy Government was invaded by the Germans, and another zone was occupied by the Italians.later the whole country was occupied by the Germans.

During the German occupation of France, people had a very difficult time finding work. Captured French soldiers were still held as POWs, over time they were released in groups to return back to their villages, towns and homes.
During the occupation a "Black Market" flourished
if one had the money, just about anything could be bought. People did the best they could under such conditions. The Germans demanded thousands of different kinds of products from foodstuff, household goods, heavy and light machinery, textile's, industrial equipment, raw materials, fuel and oil to supply the German war machine the Germans used French labor to refurbish and service military equipment both French and German


Many Frenchmen turned their backs on France and worked with their "New German Masters" some for money and greed. Others worked slow & unwillingly
to provide for their families.

By 1943 the Germans deported skilled & unskilled workers to Germany to work in the arms industry and other industrial factories. Frenchmen working with the Germans turned in other Frenchmen and also turned in French Jews to the Nazis who sent them to death camps, at the same time many brave French people hid Jews from the Nazis. The years 1940 to 1944 were a dark page in French history.


The poor worked at the few skilled and unskilled jobs left and they worked long hours, some worked 12 hours a day, for the basics of life food, clothes and shelter. They watched what they said and to whom they said it to. The Gestapo had informers this turned friends, co-workers and relatives into enemies. Some people had an idea who the collaborators were while others kept a low profile dealing with the Germans, while others fought against the Germans the best way they could.


During the occupation of France and Paris,enemies were made. French citizens who worked for the Germans were seen as "Enemies of France" and Collaborators.
After France was "Liberated" the first Allied forces into Paris were Free French, later those that sided with the Germans were put on trial or shot it was wartime justice against those that hurt so many.


As Free French and Allied forces entered Paris resistance fighters and Free French operatives fought the German garrison, to save the garrison the Germans, retreated from the city, but not without loss of life on all sides.
Employees of the Metro, Police, Postal workers and other services went on strike and joined by workers across the city. Hitler wanted Paris to burn to the ground the However, the Commanding General Dietrich von Choltitz hesitated allowing his troops to leave the city.
Some view Dietrich von Choltitz as the General who disobeyed Hitler and saved Paris from urban warfare, that would have destroyed parts of the city, while others view him has a faithful
Nazi General.


This was a popular 1950s hit song


The Blood of Free Men: The Liberation of Paris 1944

By Michael Neiberg
Published by Basis Books (Oct. 2012)
ISBN-1O 0465023991

I thank the editor/ww2db for allowing me great
latitude in leaving my comments.
10. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
12 Apr 2014 07:59:56 PM


While stationed in West Germany 1966/67, I took
a weeks leave in June to visit Paris, France traveled by USO Guided Tours and had a wonderful visit.
The last two days of the tour, you were able to explore Paris on your own. Part of my adventure, was getting lost. Seeing a policeman, I asked directions, but the officer didn't speak English
told him I was an American.
Americain! he said. He would stop people and ask in French if they spoke English. One lady did and asked me where I was from, I said Los Angeles, Ca
The officer saluted us and continued his patrol. She told me how to return to my hotel, what train to take and what stop to get off.


This wonderful lady bought coffee & a variety of French pastries for us and insisted on paying for everything. We talked about our different experiences, and told me she was English and that her late husband was in the French army in 1940 who was captured, she was among a group of hundreds of wives to ask the Germans for the release of their husbands, brothers and sons.
She witnessed the Germans march into Paris, lived through the occupation from 1940 to 1944 and saw the Germans leave Paris as the Allies entered the city. She paid for my train ticket, gave me a kiss on the cheek and said our good-bys. Over the decades I've forgotten that lady's name, but not her kindness.
My next leave was to London, England in September by November 1967 I was in South Vietnam serving with the U.S 9th Infantry Division in the Mekong Delta, but that's another story.

Manufacture Nationale d' Armes de Tulle (MAT-49)

The French Policeman that I asked for directions was armed w/the MAT-49 Sub Machine Gun in 9mm.
In Vietnam, I saw the Vietnamese National Police
carry both the French MAT-49's & American M-16's

I'm very grateful to the editor/ww2db, that I could leave this personnel experience and story.


This film has been a sleeper for decades it was filmed in black & white due to the amount of historical archive footage. Supported by many talented French, German and American actors and actresses.
Gert Frobe best remembered as (Auric Goldfinger) who played General Dietrich von Choltitz, Orson Wells, Anthony Perkins, Robert Stack and Glenn Ford. Based on the book: Is Paris Burning by
Dominique Lapierre.

Did you know that during a break in the filming of "Is Paris Burning" actors that were dressed in German uniforms, were standing around, waiting for the next scene, when an older woman turning the corner upon seeing them screamed out There Back!

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