Soldiers goose-step past the Führer in honor of Hitler's 50th birthday, April 20, 1939. Less than five months later, on September 1, the Third Reich's forces invaded Poland; on September 3, England and France declared war on Germany. The Second World War had begun.
On 14 June 1940, sergeant François Mitterrand was wounded and taken prisoner by the Germans. After a year and a half he finally managed to escape. He would become President of France, from 1981 to 1995.