Episode 5 – The Civil War Part 2

The Civil War Part 2

The Civil War Part 2

In the previous episodes, we learned how Paris lived under this new government known as the Commune. However, as the civil war continued, Parisian residents increasingly knew that a military victory would be impossible. How do people act, how do governments rule, how do soldiers fight when they know that they are on the verge of annihilation?

Within a few weeks of the establishment of the 1871 Paris Commune, it became clear that Paris would receive no help from other cities in France or revolutionaries outside of the country. Meanwhile, the city again fell under siege following its failed sortie in the beginning of April.

Gustave Cluseret rose to the position of Delegate of War, and he tried to reform the National Guard. However, he accomplished little. France and Paris battled fiercely in Neuilly, which suffered intensely under the French siege. Bombarded by immense naval guns and trapped in basements of destroyed homes, the residents of Neuilly disproportionately  were the casualties of the civil war.

Adolphe Thiers appealed to Prussia for aid in the war against Paris. Prussia began releasing French soldiers from the prisoner camps established during the Franco-Prussian War. As France received more soldiers and money, the fierce bombardments spread to the rest of Paris. Soon, the integral fort of d’Issy was taken, which protected the Commune by sitting between Paris and Versailles.

France soon gained entry to the Paris, and the massacres began.


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