Viviane Janouin-Benanti

In the name of freedom

Version française

Joseph Boczov and Olga Bancic, two from the Affiche rouge (Red poster)

Free man,
remember Joseph Boczov and Olga Bancic

February 1944: the Affiche Rouge (a propaganda poster, known as the Red poster because of its red background), showing the faces of 10 resistant, including those of Missak Manouchian and Joseph Boczov, is placarded by the Gestapo throughout France.

The Resistance fighters of the FTP-MOI (Francs-Tireurs et Partisans – Main d’Oeuvre Immigrée) are denounced as the army of crime.

Joseph Boczov, of his true name Ferenz Wolf, a chemical engineer, founded and led the 4th detachment of FTP-MOI charged with the derailment of the trains of the SS and the Wehrmacht… He will be executed by firing squad at Mont Valerian the February 21, 1944. He was 38 years old.

Olga Bancic, a worker, located the targets and helped transport of weapon for FTP-MOI. Deported in Germany, she will be beheaded by axe by the Nazis in Stuttgart on May 10th, 1944, on her 32nd birthday. She was the mother of Dolorès, a 5-year-old little girl.

They had come on foot from Romania. Joseph, to join the international Brigades in order to help Spanish Republicans against Franco. Olga, to flee the repression and join France, homeland of Human Rights. From Jewish families, all two comrades of Ana Pauker, they believed that communism would bring happiness to Romania.

From Romania to France, via Spain, the life of Joseph Boczov and Olga Bancic is a real epic. Viviane Janouin-Benanti makes them come alive again to us in this thrilling novel.