Ici Radio France Londres

18 June 1940 – commemorating de Gaulles' famous appeal in exile from London

On June 18, 1940 Charles de Gaulle leader of the Free French Forces, launched his famous “Appeal to all the French” – a call , from the studios of the BBC in London, for resistance to the German occupation.

L’Appel du 18 Juin – one of the most important speeches in French history – called for a continuation of the war against Germany and made an appeal to all French officers and soldiers, military engineers and armament workers, to rally under his command in London. He concluded his broadcast with words that have gone down in history: ‘The flame of French Resistance must not and will not be extinguished’.

De Gaulle was speaking to the French from London after the fall of France and his declaration that for France the war was not yet over, was instrumental in rallying the country in support of the Resistance.


Broadcasting the speech that rallied the French in support of the Resistance

In June 2010 there will be a series of events in London, organised by the Institut Français, to mark the 70th anniversary of this critical point in the origins and history of the French Resistance.

Visitors to London will have the rare opportunity to hear from four leading members of the Resistance who will offer personal accounts of life in war-time London and Occupied France. Veteran Free French member Jean-Louis Crémieux-Brilhac will participate in a round table discussion on 16 June. The next day, Raymond Aubrac (a leader of the Resistance movement Libération), Stéphane Hessel (Free French Secret Agent) and Daniel Cordier (Secretary to Resistance leader Jean Moulin) will join British and French historians at a public conference entitled La Flamme de la Résistance.

Resistance on Screen, a special film season, will take place between June 15 and 24 at Ciné Lumière, and Radio France will broadcast a commemorative programme live from the Institut Français on 18 June. Radio France is marking the 70th year of De Gaulle’s call for resistance by mobilising its resources for a major anniversary cebebration of a day when radio entered history. Live from London on June 18 2010 listen to and watch Ici Radio France Londres

Read the full programme

Other events include talks at the Maison Française d’Oxford and exhibits at the BBC, Alliance Française and Lycée Français. The Institut Français will present a selection of rare Free French documents, available to all residents on Culturethèque, its newly launched digital online platform.

These celebrations will be launched with the UK Premiere at the Institut Français, of Libres Français de Londres, a unique and moving documentary on the daily life of the Free French between 1940 and 1944, on 15 June.

Quoi qu’il arrive la flamme de la resistance Francaise ne doit pas s’eteindre e ne s’eteindra pas“- General de Gaulle, 18th June 1940

See “The flame of French resistance” These speeches were broadcast by the BBC on June 18, 19 and 22 1940. Full transcript is here

And as June 2010 brings us a slew of important European anniversaries there is also an unexpected literary twist gifted by De Gaulle and the Free French. On this 70th anniversary of the famous French leader’s radio broadcast, the Free French events also highlight a surprising turn in the life and work of author, Nancy Mitford.

The stirring call to resist by Gen Charles de Gaulle, as leader of the Free French.

Story: Ken Pottinger

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to our RSS feed!