Luxembourg was invaded by Germany in 1940. Officially, Luxembourg was neutral but it was strategically located at the end of the French line of defense. Although a neutral territory, it had value to the Nazi’s because of its location. In the early 1940s, Luxembourg surrendered after one day of fighting, was put under occupation, and annexed into Germany.

After the occupation, the Germans arranged a “Germanisation” program that tried to rid non-German customs and languages by spreading the German language and culture. In the winter of 1940 and 1941 small groups of resistance were forming across the country to protest the occupation. These groups had little access to weapons when they first began forming but they spread the word by printing anti-German leaflets and also assisted by hiding men who were trying to avoid German military service.

The Luxembourg Resistance was crucial in gathering and delivering information to the Allies. One important piece of information alerted the Allies of the existence of a secret army research facility on the coast of the Baltic Sea. The Allies were then able to bomb the location from the air. There was also passive resistance to the German occupation. These citizens wore patriotic pin badges and when asked, refused to declare themselves as German citizens. This led to mass arrests. Luxembourg’s military was only symbolic, so many Luxembourgers fought in Allied armies.

In 1944, Luxembourg was finally liberated by Allied forces. When allied forces entered the capital city, resistance fighters rose up and fought a large German force at the Battle of Viaden Castle. This led to a series of battles and the eventual liberation of Luxembourg. The effect this event had on the Luxembourg area was a major shift in the Luxembourg viewpoint on neutrality. Luxembourg joined with Belgium France, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, signing the Treaty of Brussels. This treaty was intended to provided one another with support and greater security by cooperating with one another as a collective group. Luxembourg also strengthened their military with more intensive training and sent a joint contingent to fight in the Korean War.