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The Francs-tireurs et partisans – main-d'œuvre immigrée (FTP-MOI) were a sub-grouping of the Francs-tireurs et partisans movement in the French Resistance to the German occupation of France during World War II. It originated from the Main-d'œuvre immigrée.

The FTP-MOI groups were had been created in the Paris region at the same time as the Francs-tireurs et partisans, in 1941. Their ranks were filled with members from the Main-d'œuvre immigrée. Foreign communists living in France but not part of the French communist party had been put in place in May 1942. Although integrated with the FTP, these groups depended directly on Jacques Duclos, who passed on orders from the Communist internationale.

The FTP-MOI were among the most active and determined resistance groups, particularly as being foreigners, and mostly Jews, they were under the direct watch of the Vichy regime, which left them no choices but secrecy or internment. Because they depended directly on the Komintern, with Duclos as intermediary, it was often they who were on the front line when the order to fight came from Moscow, while the various French groups were more more responsive to the French national dynamic.

The Parisian groups were initially led by Boris Holban, then Missak Manouchian. When Manouchian was arrested, Holban took over again from the beginning of 1944.

The FTP-MOI are particularly well known owing to the trial of 24 members of Manouchian's group, and the related Affiche rouge. Their trial was held in front of a German military tribunal at the hôtel Continental. It began on 17 February 1944, lasted between two and four days, and after a 30-minute deliberation, reached the following verdict :

  • 23 accused were condemned to death, with no possibilty of appeal. 22 were shot immediately on the 21 February at mont Valérien. The execution of Olga Bancic was suspended for further enquiry. In a new sentence passed on the 10 May 1944 at Stuttgart, she was condemned to death and promptly beheaded by axe.
  • One accused, Migratulski, was transfered to French jurisdiction.

Structure of the FTP-MOI

Paris Groupe Manouchian

Armed group led by Joseph Epstein and Missak Manouchian.

The 23 members of the Manouchian group executed by the Nazis.

22 were shot at mont Valérien on the 21 February 1944 :

Marseille Region Compagnie Marat

Lyon Region, Carmagnole-Liberté

Herbert Herz was a member of these two groups.

Toulouse region, 35 brigade

The 35 Brigade took its name from the 35 division of gunners of the International Brigades which Marcel (Mendel) Langer, head of the regional FTP-MOI, had belonged to.

Langer was arrested carrying explosives in February 1943, and tried by the section spéciale of the Toulouse appeals court. The advocat général Lespinasse demanded his head, and on the 21 March 1943, Langer was sentenced to death. He was executed on 23 July 1943. The 35 Brigade then became the Brigade Marcel Langer.

Eighteen FTP-MOI members were arrested by the Vichy police and handed over to the Germans. Two died on the train that was taking them to be deported. Four were shot..


  • Claude COLLIN, Carmagnole et Liberté. Les étrangers dans la Résistance en Rhône-Alpes, PUG, 2000
  • Claude LEVY(*), Raymond LEVY(*), Une histoire vraie, Paris : Les éditeurs français réunis, 1953
  • Claude LEVY(*), Les parias de la résistance, Paris : Calmann-Lévy, 1970
  • Jean-Yves BOURSIER, La guerre de partisans dans le Sud-Ouest de la France, 1942-1944. La 35e Brigade FTP-MOI, Paris : L’Harmattan, 1992
  • Gérard de VERBIZIER, Ni travail, ni famille, ni patrie. Journal d’une brigade F.T.P.-M.O.I., Toulouse, 1942-1944, Paris : Calmann-Lévy, 1994
  • Marc BRAFMAN(*), « Les origines, les motivations, l’action et les destins des combattants juifs (parmi d’autres immigrés) de la 35e Brigade FTP-MOI de Marcel Langer, Toulouse 1942-1944 », in : Le Monde juif, n° 152, pp. 79-95, 09-12/1994
  • Damira TITONEL-ASPERTI(*), Carmela MALTONE, Ecrire pour les autres. Mémoires d’une résistante. Les antifascistes italiens en Lot-et-Garonne sous l’occupation, Presses universitaires de Bordeaux, 1999
  • Jurg ALTWEGG, L’odyssé du train fantôme, 3 juillet 1944 : une page de notre histoire, Paris : Robert Laffont, 2003
  • Greg LAMAZERES, Marcel Langer, une vie de combats. 1903-1943. Juif, communiste, résistant... et guillotiné, Toulouse : Privat, 2003
  • Henri SOUM, Chronique des bords de Garonne, t. 3 « Le Vent des Fous », Ed. Signes du monde, 1994
  • Marc Lévy, Les enfants de la liberté, Editions Robert Laffont, 2007.
  • F.F.I. - F.T.P.F., Pages de gloire des vingt-trois, Immigration, 1951.
  • Philippe Robrieux, L'Affaire Manouchian - Vie et mort d'un héros communiste, Fayard, 1986.
  • (*) Former member of the 35 Brigade FTP-MOI "Marcel Langer"


The title is taken from the song L'affiche rouge (Words: Louis Aragon Music: Jean Ferrat, Maurice Vandair) .

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