Excellent – Americans in Paris: Life and Death under Nazi Occupation 1940–44

A wonderful atmospheric story of the 5000 Americans who chose to remain in Paris under Nazi occupation. There is such a vast literature on World War 2, but this story is unfamiliar to most.

The Americans whose stories are told here include Sylvia Beach the owner of the famous bookshop, Shakespeare and Co and William Bullitt the American Ambassador. Bullitt chose not to flee despite orders from Roosevelt. As Bullitt puts it- Not a single American Ambassador had run away during the French Revolution and other uprisings right up to the First World War and he won’t be the first to cut and run p 13)

Bullitt had an interesting life. He married the widow to John Reed who wrote the famous reportage of the Russian revolution ‘ Ten days that shook the war’. He was part of the American delegation to the Versailles Treaty but resigned in protest against the term that abandoned 36 million Chinese in Shantung to Japan.

I highly recommend this book.

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