The Eiffel Tower is a wrought iron lattice tower made out of iron built on the Champ de Mars beside the Seine River in Paris, France in 1889. It is named after the engineer Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower.

The tower is 324 metres (1,063 ft) tall, about the same height as an 81-story building, and the tallest structure in Paris. Its base is square, measuring 125 meters (410 ft) on each side. During its construction, the Eiffel Tower surpassed the Washington Monument to become the tallest man-made structure in the world, a title it held for 41 years until the Chrysler Building in New York City was finished in 1930. Originally standing 300 metres (984 ft), due to the addition of a broadcasting aerial at the top of the tower in 1957, it is now taller than the Chrysler Building by 5.2 metres (17 ft). Excluding transmitters, the Eiffel Tower is the second-tallest structure in France after the Millau Viaduct.

The tower has become a global icon and a symbol of France and is one of the most recognizable structures in the world.

Eiffel Tower in The Hot War[]

When Paris was hit by a Soviet atom bomb in June 1951[1], the Eiffel Tower was partly melted. The rest of it fell over, smashing other nearby buildings that might otherwise have survived the bomb.[2]

Eiffel Tower in The Man With the Iron Heart[]

The Eiffel Tower was toppled by a German Freedom Front "Werewolf" named Jürgen Voss in 1946. Voss parked a truck loaded with high-explosives at the base of the Tower, and then blew the truck (and himself) up. The resulting explosion knocked the Tower over into the Seine River. A weatherman trying to set up a barometer at the top of the tower fell into the river, and survived with only a broken wrist.[3]

In the aftermath of the attack, France's de facto leader, Charles de Gaulle, promised that the "Tower would rise again, but that Nazi Germany would not". US President Harry Truman declared "We are all Frenchmen" to show unity with one of America's ally. Much was made of the fact Voss, like Hitler, had been a corporal and also managed to do major damage to France.[4]

In 1947, the French were still vowing to rebuild the tower, but had not even begun to do so.[5]

Eiffel Tower in Southern Victory[]

A photo of the superbombed Eiffel Tower in July 1944. (Southern Victory)

Another image of the damaged Eiffel Tower in the ruins of Paris in July 1944.

The Eiffel Tower was severely damaged by the German superbomb that devastated most of Paris and caused the French to admit defeat in the Second Great War. The only part of the tower that was still standing after the bombing was its damaged four legs. [6]

Eiffel Tower in The War That Came Early[]

During the Second World War, the Eiffel Tower was targeted by the German Luftwaffe in 1939, which succeeded in knocking the top 50 feet of the tower off.[7] The meteorologist who was on top when it was bombed, did not leave enough of a corpse to be buried.[8]

The Tower's destruction was seen by some as a symbol of the failure of the French government to act decisively earlier in the war.[9]


  1. Bombs Away, pgs. 427-430, ebook.
  2. Armistice, p. 154.
  3. The Man With the Iron Heart, pgs. 287-289, HC.
  4. Ibid., pg. 291.
  5. Ibid., pg. 364.
  6. In at the Death, pg. 291, TPB.
  7. Hitler's War, pg. 364., West and East, pg. 67.
  8. West and East, pg. 67.
  9. Hitler's War, pg. 364.