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Author Topic: It started September 1st 1939 - WWII Day by Day Recount  (Read 211077 times)
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« Reply #40 on: 28 September 2009, 19:56:04 »
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September 28 1939

Poland
Despite a tactical Polish victory on 28 September at the Battle of Szack, the outcome of the larger conflict was never in doubt

Quote
German-Soviet Boundary and Friendship Treaty 28 September 1939
The Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R. consider it as exclusively their task, after the collapse of the former Polish state, to re-establish peace and order in these territories and to assure to the peoples living there a peaceful life in keeping with their national character. To this end, they have agreed upon the following:

ARTICLE I. The Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R. determine as the boundary of their respective national interests in the territory of the former Polish state the line marked on the attached map, which shall be described in more detail in a supplementary protocol.

ARTICLE II. Both parties recognize the boundary of the respective nation interests established in article I as definitive and shall reject any interference of third powers in this settlement.

ARTICLE III. The necessary reorganization of public administration will be effected in the areas west of the line specified in article I by the Government of the German Reich, in the areas east of this line by the Government of the U.S.S.R.

ARTICLE IV. The Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R. regard this settlement as a firm foundation for a progressive development of the friendly relations between their peoples.

ARTICLE V. This treaty shall be ratified and the ratifications shall be exchanged in Berlin as soon as possible. The treaty becomes effective upon signature.

Done in duplicate, in the German and Russian languages. Moscow, September 28,1939.

For the Government of the German Reich: J. RIBBENTROP.

By authority of the Government of the U.S.S.R.: W. MOLOTOV.

********************

Confidential Protocol

The Government of the U.S.S.R. shall place no obstacles in the way of Reich nationals and other persons of German descent residing in the territories under its jurisdiction, if they desire to migrate to Germany or to the territories under German jurisdiction. It agrees that such removals shall be carried out by agents of the Government of the Reich in cooperation with the competent local authorities and that the property rights of the emigrants shall be protected. A corresponding obligation is assumed by the Government of the German Reich in respect to the persons of Ukrainian or White Russian descent residing in the territories under its jurisdiction.

Moscow, September 28,1939.

For the Government of the German Reich: J. RIBBENTROP

By authority of the Government of the U.S.S.R. W. MOLOTOV.

Secret Supplementary Protocol

The undersigned Plenipotentiaries declare the agreement of the Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R upon the following:

The Secret Supplementary Protocol signed on August 23,1939, shall be amended in item to the effect that the territory of the Lithuanian State falls to the sphere of influence of the U.S.S.R., while, on the other hand, the province of Lublin and parts of the province of Warsaw fall to the sphere of influence of Germany (cf. the map attached to the Boundary and Friendship Treaty signed today). As soon as the Government of the U.S.S.R. shall take special measures on Lithuanian territory to protect its interests, the present German-Lithuanian border, for the purpose of a natural and simple boundary delineation, shall be rectified in such a way that the Lithuanian territory situated to the southwest of the line marked on the attached map should fall to Germany.

Further it is declared that the economic agreements now in force between Germany and Lithuania shall not be affected by the measures of the Soviet Union referred to above.

Moscow, September 28,1939.

For the Government of the German Reich: J. RIBBENTROP

By authority of the Government of the U.S.S.R.: W. MOLOTOV.

*******************************

Declaration of the Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R. of September 28, 1939


After the Government of the German Reich and the Government of the U.S.S.R. have, by means of the treaty signed today, definitively settled the problems arising from the collapse of the Polish state and have thereby created a sure foundation for a lasting peace in Eastern Europe, they mutually express their conviction that it would serve the true interest of all peoples to put an end to the state of war existing a present between Germany on the one side and England and France on the other. Both Governments will therefore direct their common efforts, jointly with other friendly powers if occasion arises, toward attaining this goal as soon as possible. Should, however, the efforts of the two Governments remain fruitless, this would demonstrate the fact that England and France are responsible for the continuation of the war, whereupon, in case of the continuation of the war, the Governments of Germany and of the U.S.S.R. shall engage in mutual consultations with regard to necessary measures.

Moscow, September 28,1939.

For the Government of the German Reich: J. RIBBENTROP

By authority of the Government of the U.S.S.R.: V. MOLOTOV


The Reich Foreign Minister to the Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the Soviet Union (Molotov)

Moscow, September 28, 1939.

MR. CHAIRMAN: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your letter of today, in which you communicate to me the following:

"With reference to our conversations I have the honor to confirm herewith that the Government of the U.S.S.R. is willing on the basis and in the sense of the general political understanding reached by us, to promote by all means the trade relations and the exchange of goods between Germany and the U.S.S.R. To this end an economic program will be drawn up by both parties, under which the Soviet Union will supply raw materials to Germany, for which Germany, in turn, will make compensation through delivery of manufactured goods over an extended period. Both parties shall frame this economic program in such a manner that the German-Soviet exchange of goods will again reach the highest volume attained in the past. Both Governments will at once issue the necessary directives for the implementation of the measures mentioned and arrange that the negotiations are begun and brought to a conclusion as soon as possible."

In the name and by authority of the Government of the German Reich I am in accord with this communication and inform you that the Government of the German Reich in turn will take the necessary steps for this purpose.

Accept, Mr. Chairman, the renewed assurance of my highest consideration.

VON RIBBENTROP


The Reich Foreign Minister to the Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the Soviet Union. (Molotov)

CONFIDENTIAL

Moscow, September 28, 1939.

MR. CHAIRMAN: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your letter of today, wherein you communicate to me the following:

"Implementing my letter of today about the formulation of a common economic program, the Government of the U.S.S.R. will see to it that German transit traffic to and from Rumania by way of the Upper Silesia-Lemberg-Kolomea railroad line shall be facilitated in every respect. The two Governments will, in the framework of the proposed trade negotiations, make arrangements without delay for the operation of this transit traffic. The same will apply to the German transit traffic to and from Iran, to and from Afghanistan as well as to and from the countries of the Far East."

"Furthermore, the Government of the U.S.S.R. declares that it is willing. in addition to the quantity of oil previously agreed upon or to be agreed upon hereafter, to supply a further quantity of oil commensurate with the annual production of the oil district of Drohobycz and Boryslav, with the proviso that one half of this quantity shall be supplied to Germany from the oil fields of the aforesaid oil district and the other half from other oil districts of the U.S.S.R. As compensation for these supplies of oil, the U.S.S.R. would accept German supplies of hard coal and steel piping."

I take note of this communication with satisfaction and concur in it in the name of the Government of the German Reich.

Accept, Mr. Chairman, the renewed assurance of my highest consideration.

VON RIBBENTROP


Moscow
Talks between German foreign minister Ribbentrop and Stalin continue. Meanwhile, a Soviet-Estonian Pact is signed, giving the USSR the use of bases in Estonia. This pact is the first in a series designed to ensure Soviet control of the Baltic.

United States
The Foreign Relations Committee decides to submit the Neutrality Bill to the US Senate.

London
The British Admiralty declares that "no British ship has been damaged nor any casualties incurred from German aircraft." The statement is in response to German radio reports of recent successes against British warships in the North Sea.
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« Reply #41 on: 29 September 2009, 21:05:57 »
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September 29 1939

Moscow
After signing the treaty Poland is partitioned, giving Germany control over the area generally west of the Bug River. Germany receives nearly 73,000 square miles of Polish territory, the USSR, 78,000 square miles. While Soviet Union gets slightly more land, the Germans now control the majority of the population (some 22,000,000) and fifty percent of all Polish industry as well as substantial mining centers. All of Lithuania is transferred to the Soviet sphere of influence. An economic agreement is also signed which includes a Soviet promise to provide Germany with the entire oil output of the Dohowicz fields.

Estonia and the USSR sign a treaty giving the USSR entrance to all Estonian seaports and airports.

Germany
RAF lost 5 Hampden bombers in a daylight raid on the Heligoland area. The raid was in two waves. In the first, 6 Hampdens attacked two German destroyers but did no damage; the second wave of 5 planes was wiped out. (Heligoland)
Australian Flying Officer John Tulloch Burrill Sadler, 144 Squadron RAF, was probably the second Australian killed in action. Flying Officer Sadler, who was serving in the RAF, was the pilot of a Handley Page Hampden bomber, serial L4121, part of a formation of five aircraft on a bombing mission on 29 September 1939. All five aircraft were intercepted and shot down between Heligoland and Wangerooge in Germany. Sadler, who has no known grave, is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial in England.

Britain
A national census is taken to obtain information on rationing and mobilization.

London
In the House of Commons, Neville Chamberlain says that Britain and France went to war to stop Nazi aggression and nothing has changed that position. Chamberlain is believed to be referring to recent private contacts between German and British representatives that have suggested formal peace negotiations may begin.

United States
In New York city, Fritz Kuhn, the leader of the pro-Nazi German-American Bund, is imprisoned.
German National Socialist diaspora: The German-American Bund
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« Reply #42 on: 1 October 2009, 20:12:43 »
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September 30 1939

Poland and Polish
A Polish government in exile is formed in France. Raczkiewicz is the new president and General Wladyslaw Sikorski is the Prime Minister and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces.

Polish President Ignace Moscicki, presently interned, resigns his post in Romania.

Naval

Off Pernambuco, Brazil, the German pocket battleship Graf Spee sinks its first merchant ship, the British steamship Clement (commanded by Captain F. Harris). Graf Spee received orders on 26 September 1939 to "commence active participation in the trade war." On 30 September the 5050-ton British tramp steamer Clement was stopped and sunk off Brazil with twenty thousand cases of kerosene bound from New York to Salvador, Brazil. Graf Spee radioed the location of Clement’s lifeboats and Clement’s captain and first officer were placed aboard the neutral Greek steamer Papalemos a few days later. Before the battle of the River Plate, in December, Graf Spee will only sink 9 ships of 50,000 tons altogether.


Graf Spee

Germany notifies Britain that armed merchant ships will be sunk without warning. The decision is claimed to be based on incidents of British merchant ships attacking German submarines.

The British cabinet authorizes poison gas shipments to France for use if the Germans begin using chemical weapons.

October 1st 1939

Poland and Polish
German troops enter Warsaw and begin disarming the Polish garrison (estimated to number 100,000 officers and men).

Polish garrison, commanded by Admiral Unrug, on the Hela Peninsula surrenders after a gallant fight. As well as land attacks they have endured a considerable naval bombardment.

Polish cryptologists arrive with a cargo of two Enigma machines in France (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enigma_machine)

The first news of the German pocket-battleships, Graf Spee and Deutschland, reaches the British Admiralty.

Winston Churchill makes his first radio broadcast of the war, saying the Soviet Union has "pursued a policy of cold self-interest" in Poland. He adds that "we could have wished that the Russian armies should be standing on their present line as the friends and allies of Poland instead of invaders. But that the Russian armies should stand on this line was clearly necessary for the safety of Russia against the Nazi menace."

The Japanese 11th Corps begins withdrawing from northern Hunan province, ending an abortive attempt to capture Changsha and the Tungting Lake area in China. The fighting is known as the first battle of Changsha (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Changsha_(1939)) and it is a major victory for the Chinese Nationalists led by Chiang Kai-shek.

WW2 - Chiang Kai Shek


Several senior officers of the Kwantung army in Japan, the Japanese army stationed in nominally independent state of Manchukuo (formerly Manchuria), have been dismissed in the wake of the agreement signed in Moscow, settling the border war with the USSR.
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« Reply #43 on: 2 October 2009, 17:59:46 »
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October 2 1939

Poland
Quote
The Battle of Kock, was the final battle in the Invasion of Poland at the beginning of World War II. It took place between 2 October and 5 October, 1939, near the town of Kock, in Poland.

2 October
The commander of XIV Corps knew that Polish forces were situated in the forests northwest of Kock. He believed that the commander of the Polish forces was unaware of Warsaw's capitulation.
The commander of 13th Motorised Infantry Division, General Paul Otto, was of the opinion that the Polish forces had become so demoralized that they were incapable of combat, and that a single German battalion would be enough to disarm the Poles and take them to a Prisoner of War camp. Otto sent a force consisting of 3rd Battalion, 93rd Motorized Infantry Regiment supported by 8th Battery, 13th Regiment of Light Artillery. The battalion commander decided to divide his forces into two groups which were sent to Serokomla and Kock. He could count on help from the 93rd Motorised Infantry Regiment with some support forces which followed him.

Kock
At 08:30, a column of half-tracks and truck-mounted infantry came under fire from a guard platoon of No.2 company of the 'Wilk' battalion. After a protracted engagement the German troops withdrew. The Polish 179th Infantry Regiment was alerted and moved to defensive positions near and in Kock. At about 11:00 the German lead elements attacked the Polish positions, which were now 2 battalions strong. In spite of supporting artillery fire, the attack failed. At dusk German motorcyclists appeared near the church in Kock and began firing, but subsequently withdrew when the fire was returned.

Serokomla
A company of motorized infantry entered the village of Serokomla. This led to the beginning of a chaotic action between the Germans and Uhlans from the 'Pils' Cavalry Brigade, (commanded by Colonel Plisowski). The Poles were supported by an artillery unit from the same brigade. The Germans were forced to withdraw to the south of the village

Casualties
German losses were 300–400 killed and wounded. Five officers, 180 NCOs and privates were captured by the Polish. Components of the 'Pils' cavalry brigade lost about 200 killed or wounded.

Forces
The Polish Polesie Independent Operational Group, led by General Franciszek Kleeberg, fought the German 14th Motorised Corps, led by General Gustav von Wiedesheim.



In Panama City the "Inter-American Conference", with 21 countries participating, establishes a 300-mile security zone off the American coast in which any act of war is to be interpreted as a hostile act against the country concerned. (http://encarta.msn.com/sidebar_461501300/1939_international_conferences_and_congresses.html)

Special British tribunals begin to deal with an estimated 50,000 enemy aliens registered in the London area.

A Franco-Czech agreement is signed providing for the raising of a Czech National Army in exile in France.

The German government advises the United States that all merchant ships in international waters will be subject to boarding by German naval forces to search for contraband.

Germany's X. Fliegerkorps (10th Air Corps) is formed 2 October, 1939 in Hamburg from the 10. Flieger-Division. The Corps was stationed in north Germany in February 1940 when some of its aircraft were involved in a disastrous friendly fire incident that terminated the Kriegsmarine's Operation Wikinger.

The RAF makes its first nighttime leaflet raid on Berlin.

Quote
The Reich Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg)

Telegram

BERLIN, October 2, 1939.

No. 475

For the Ambassador.

Please inform Molotov at once that according to reports I have received the Turkish Government would hesitate to conclude an assistance pact with France and England, if the Soviet Union emphatically opposed it. In my opinion, as already stated several times, it would also be in the Russian interest, on account of the question of the Straits, to forestall a tie-up of Turkey with England and France. I was therefore particularly anxious for the Russian Government to proceed in that direction, in order to dissuade Turkey from the final conclusion of assistance pacts with the Western powers and to settle this at once in Moscow. No doubt, the best solution at the moment would be the return of Turkey to a policy of absolute neutrality while confirming existing Russian-Turkish agreements.

Prompt and final diversion of Turkey from the projected Anglo-French treaty, said to have been recently initialed, would also clearly be in keeping with the peace offensive agreed upon in Moscow, as thereby another country would withdraw from the Anglo-French camp.

RIBBENTROP

*****

Frame 111660, serial 103

The Reich Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in Turkey (Papen)

Telegram

BERLIN, October 2, 1939.

No. 352

Ambassador Schulenburg received the following instructions: Insert text of [preceding telegram]. End of instruction.

Page 111

I request that you, for your part, likewise do your best to forestall the final conclusion of the assistance pact between Turkey and the Western powers. In this matter you also might point to the strong Russian aversion to a unilateral commitment of Turkey and explain that the conclusion of the assistance pact under present war conditions would necessarily be viewed differently by Germany than before the outbreak of the war.

*****

Frame 233367, serial 495

Memorandum by the State Secretary in the German Foreign Office (Weizsäcker)

BERLIN, October 2, 1939.

St. S. Nr. 769

The Finnish Minister today requested me to clarify the significance of the arrangement of spheres of influence between Germany and Russia; he was particularly interested in knowing what effect the Moscow agreements might have on Finland.

I reminded the Minister that a short time ago Finland, as is well known, had rejected our proposal to conclude a non-aggression pact. Perhaps this was now regretted in Helsinki. For the rest, now as then it is the wish of Germany to live with Finland on the best and most friendly terms and, particularly in the economic sphere, to effect as extensive an exchange of goods as possible. If Herr Wuorimaa felt uneasy about Finland because of the Estonian incident and Herr Munters' [49] trip to Moscow, announced today, I would have to tell him that I was not informed as to Moscow's policies vis-à-vis Finland. But I felt that worries over Finland at this time are not warranted.

The Minister then spoke of the Ciano visit. In this connection I remarked that after the completion of the Polish campaign we had undoubtedly arrived at an important juncture in the war. The announced convocation of the Reichstag pointed to a statement from the Government in which the idea would surely be expressed that we regarded as senseless any opening of real hostilities in the West. Of course, should the Western powers fail to seize the opportunity for peace, one would probably have to resign oneself to a bitter struggle.

WEIZSÄCKER



TIME

Quote
GERMANY: Seven Years War?

The square-rigged, ruddy-cheeked, sea-trading folk of one of the quaintest old towns in Europe last week dropped their placid and peculiar tasks—such as adding tiny flakes of pure gold leaf to the sparkling, sweet liqueur they sell as Danziger Goldwasser—to come tumbling down the high stoops of their peak-gabled houses for a bucolic joy spree over Adolf Hitler.

The populace of Danzig seemed to figure that for them the Blitzkrieg or Lightning War was over, and they cavorted with the gaiety of Armistice crowds in 1918. The 407,000 Danzigers are 94% German, solidly Nazi and have been super-propagandized for years to believe that most of their troubles would vanish once the Free City was unshackled from League of Nations and Polish control, rejoined to the Reich. Trudging in last week with armfuls of wild flowers from the countryside, the people had carpeted with blossoms ten miles of road leading into Danzig from their gambling casino suburb Zoppot. Appropriately, A. Hitler, who had led all Europe to take the supreme gamble, war, had slept the night at Zoppot, after arriving from the crumbling Polish front.

Amid the brilliant sunshine which Germans call "Hitler weather"—they used to call it "Kaiser weather"—the Führer rumbled off to Danzig in a six-wheeled juggernaut staff car, followed by two Gestapo cars in which guards sat fingering new-style German repeater rifles. They did not shoot when the sidewalk lines of brown-shirted storm troops holding people back in Danzig were repeatedly broken as crowds surged forward cheering. One break was made by a brawny group of Red Cross nurses. Whooping with excitement, young Danzig students risked their lives in dashes right to the juggernaut's flanks. Wherever the stiff-armed, saluting Führer looked he saw swastika flags, bobbing placards, "We Welcome Our Liberator!" "We Thank Our Führer!" "To the Liberator of Danzig!" "Our Hearts Beat For Our c!"

"Peace Jitters." In far from bucolic Wall Street, meanwhile, war babies stocks sagged heavily as traders, apprehensive of peace proposals Orator Hitler might make at Danzig, did a little quick profit taking, then spun the dials of their radio sets to hear the Führer. "It was a market based on peace jitters," recorded Financial Editor C. Norman Stabler of the New York Herald Tribune. He figured that the day before, "the market lost 32% of the war upswing" because it was feared that A. Hitler might directly propose peace.

Orator Hitler spoke in the medieval Artushof (Guildhall), introduced by No. 1 Danzig Nazi Albert Forster. "We have only this one wish," Hitler told Danzig, "that the Almighty God, who has blessed our arms, will now perhaps give other peoples comprehension of how useless this war . . . will be ... and that He may perhaps cause reflection on the blessings of peace which they are sacrificing because a handful of fanatic warmongers . . . want to involve peoples in war."

If this had been taken as the keynote of the speech, Wall Street's war babies might have ceased to bounce, but the Führer also said: "We are all men who in their long struggle have been nothing but attacked. That only tended to increase the love of our followers. . . . [When Britons say] that this war will last three years, then I can only say my sympathies are with the French poilu. At present he knows that he will have to fight for at least three years. ... If it should last for three years then the word capitulation will not appear at the end of the third year, neither at the end of the fourth . . . and also not in the sixth or seventh year! The German people will not split up in this fight. . . ."

This was enough for Wall Street traders, the war babies promptly recovering their losses, some even bouncing fractionally higher than before Hitler went to Danzig.

Adolf to Joseph. The Führer, as a conqueror who had smashed the Polish State in 18 days, turned at Danzig to reassure Joseph Stalin and pave the way for the military partition of Poland by friendly Nazis and Reds (see p. 29). "I am happy now ... to refute . . . British statesmen who continually maintain that Germany intends to dominate Europe to the Ural Mountains. . . . Now, gentlemen of the British Empire, Germany's aims are very limited. We have discussed the matter with Russia . . . and if you are of the opinion that we might come to a conflict on the subject—we will not. . . . It will calm you to learn that Germany does not, and did not, want to conquer the Ukraine!"

While thus chumming up to Communist Stalin in a military sense, Nazi Hitler strove to keep a political line sharply drawn between the two regimes: "I want to give here an explanation: Russia remains what she is and Germany also remains what she is!"

Adolf to Neville & Edouard. Actual nub of the Hitler speech was an effort to undermine Allied morale by representing Poland as a Humpty Dumpty which just-cannot be put together again and by asking the Allies, who entered World War II avowedly to assist now crushed Poland, whether it is reasonable to fight on because they find Hitlerism intolerable.

"Such an utter lack of conscience!" cried Herr Hitler. "What would be said if one of us should say that the present regime in France or Britain does not suit us and consequently we are conducting a war? What immeasurable lack of conscience. . . . I have neither toward England nor France any war claims, nor has the German nation. . . . Poland never will rise again in the form of the Versailles treaty. That is guaranteed not only by Germany, but also . . . Russia.

Unspeakable Weapons. Tucked elsewhere into the Führer's long and heated speech were his old claims that Poland started World War II incited by the Allies; that France was willing at the last moment to keep peace on terms proposed by Italy but was rushed by Britain into war; that the whole Danzig question was an agony to A. Hitler personally ("What keen suffering I underwent in these years only few can imagine"); that Poles have invented a new atrocity ("Worst of all the Polish Government quite openly admitted on its own radio that parachuting German fliers were murdered"); and that Germany has in reserve a new weapon (see p. 50) ("Let them make no mistake here, however. The moment could come very suddenly when we could use a weapon with which we cannot be attacked. . . We Germans do not like that. It is not in our nature").

"General Purpose." The prompt retorts of London and Paris were as different as the personal characters of Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier.

In the House of Commons, the Prime Minister observed: "Herr Hitler says much in his speech about the humane 'methods by which he has waged war. I can only say that methods are not made humane by calling them so, and accounts of German bombing of open towns and machine gunning of refugees have shocked the world. . . . Our general purpose in this struggle is well known. It is to redeem Europe from the perpetually recurring fear of German aggression and to enable the peoples of Europe to preserve their independence and liberties. . . . Hitler's speech at Danzig yesterday did not change the situation."

The square-jawed French Premier returned hot from an inspection of French lines to broadcast: "I am not the leader of fanatic masses. I am charged with direction of a nation of free men. . . . They know why they are fighting. They are fighting because Germany has forced war on us, because for the last three years the devouring German ambition has not left Europe a single secure day. . . .

"The destruction of Poland was secretly resolved in advance. . . . The Red Army entered Poland in its turn as a result of a secret pact. In reality, since August 23 an accord had been concluded between Germany and the Soviet Union for the dismemberment of Poland.

"Mr. Hitler has pretended that he wanted only Danzig, plebiscite for the Corridor, an autostrade. He still broadcast his assurances even while he had in his hands the precious agreement by which Germany and Russia were to partition their living prey.

"What honest man in no matter what country in the world could still believe in the word of those who today declare themselves satisfied or peaceful, now that they are covered with blood? . . . When Mr. Hitler tells us today after destroying Poland that he asks for nothing more, when he declares he wants nothing from France and will respect her frontiers, every Frenchman knows he will not hesitate if he can destroy France as he destroyed Austria, as he destroyed Czecho-Slovakia, as he seeks to destroy Poland. . . .

"After so many lies and so many denials, German propaganda is left the last hope: That of splitting the forces which are going to shatter her march toward world domination. It is clear that German propaganda now has no more than two objectives. It wants to separate France from England. It wants to split the French among themselves.

"But when the French listen to enemy broadcasts which tell them this war is England's war they reply: No, it's Hitler's war. . . .

"We wage war because we do not wish France to be enslaved. . . .

"We will not permit certain individuals to enrich themselves while others give their lifeblood. We are calm and resolved. We are not haunted like our enemies by fear of a long war. We think only of one thing: Complete victory. That victory we will consider won when we can give France the security which Hitler's projects destroyed for three years!"

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« Reply #44 on: 2 October 2009, 18:08:09 »
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2 october 1939

Netherlands

At The Hague the first car-free sunday was held.
With 4 checkpoints the police was able to close the citycentre for all cars.

Hr MS Van Kinsbergen (armored cruiser) departed to the Western(Dutch) Indies.
The ship accompanied two submarines from the Royal Dutch Royal Navy the '015' and the '020'.
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« Reply #45 on: 3 October 2009, 18:21:42 »
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October 3 1939

Quote
Telegram

VERY URGENT
Moscow, October 3, 1939-7:04 p. m.
Received October 3, 1939-11:10 p. m.
STRICTLY SECRET

No. 463 of October 3

Molotov summoned me to his office at 2 p. m. today, in order to communicate to me the following:

The Soviet Government would tell the Lithuanian Foreign Minister, who arrives today, that, within the framework of an amicable settlement of mutual relations (probably similar to the one with Estonia), the Soviet Government was willing to cede the city of Vilna and its environs to Lithuania, while at the same time the Soviet Government would indicate to Lithuania that it must cede the well-known portion of its territory to Germany. Molotov inquired what formal procedure we had in mind for carrying this out. His idea was the simultaneous signing of a Soviet-Lithuanian protocol on Vilna and a German-Lithuanian protocol on the Lithuanian area to be ceded to us.

I replied that this suggestion did not appeal to me. It seemed to me more logical that the Soviet Government should exchange Vilna for the strip to be ceded to us and then hand this strip over to us. Molotov did not seem quite in accord with my proposal but was willing to let me ask for the viewpoint of my Government and give him a reply by tomorrow noon.

Molotov's suggestion seems to me harmful, as in the eyes of the world it would make us appear as "robbers" of Lithuanian territory, while the Soviet Government figures as the donor. As I see it, only my suggestion enters into consideration at all. However, I would ask you to consider whether it might not be advisable for us, by a separate secret German-Soviet protocol, to forego the cession of the Lithuanian strip of territory until the Soviet Union actually incorporates Lithuania, an idea on which, I believe, the arrangement concerning Lithuania was originally based.

SCHULENBURG



The British 1st Corps of the BEF take over responsibility for an appropriate section of the Franco-Belgian frontier. French forces complete their withdrawal from advanced positions in German territory (the Warndt Forest and the Saarbrucken Salient).

Poland
The last significant units of the Polish army surrender near Luck. The Germans have taken 700,000 prisoners and the Soviets 200,000. Polish casualties have been severe. The Germans have lost 10,000 dead and 30,000 wounded. Many Poles have escaped and will gradually find their way to the west. Although tank units have played a notable part in the campaign, it is interesting to note that the contemporary German official appreciation lay more stress on the traditional-style infantry battles. The tank forces are seen at this stage, except by enthusiasts like Guderian, as little more than useful auxiliaries who can help the infantry do the real work. The first plans for the attack in the west will reflect this official attitude. Meanwhile, the German 10th Army begins to redeploys from Poland to the west.

Quote
The Battle of Kock
3 October

The stiff Polish resistance forced General Otto to use all his forces for an assault. He was going to split Polish forces in two and destroy them. He decided that the 33rd Motorised Infantry Regiment supported by part of the divisional artillery would attack Annopol, Pie?ki and Talczyn. This force was tasked with destroying the Polish 50th Infantry Division. The 93rd Motorised Infantry Regiment was ordered to capture Serokomla then Hordzie? and to destroy a defensive formation of the 'Zaza' cavalry division. The 66th Motorised Infantry Regiment entered the field of battle in the afternoon.

General Kleeberg thought that the main German advance would be toward the 'Zaza' cavalry division at Serokomla Hordzie?. He decided that part of the cavalry would fend off the German attack. The rest would join a counter-attack alongside the 50th Infantry Division on the right wing and rear of the 13th German Motorized Infantry Division. The 60th Infantry Division and the 'Podlachia' cavalry brigade would close off potential German attack routes. If this counter-attack was successful, the German division would be forced to withdraw behind the river Wieprz.

Between 0750 and 0930, attacks by two regiments of the 50th Infantry Division (the 180th and the 178th, less its 2nd battalion), attacked. They were supported by a howitzer battery. The attack was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Gorzkowski . Initially successful, the Polish units were halted and then forced onto the defensive. The cavalry attack by the Uhlans was also stopped and forced to withdraw west of Wola Gu?owska.

At 10:30, German artillery begun to fire on Polish cavalry positions. The Wehrmacht's 93rd Motorized Infantry Regiment began an attack on the 'Wilk' battalion positions, inflicting heavy losses. The 33rd Infantry Regiment began a gradual attack on the Polish 50th Infantry Division.

After heavy fighting, the German advance was stopped. Otto decided to support the 33rd Motorised Infantry Regiment with the 2nd Battalion of the 66th Motorised Infantry Regiment. German formations captured Wola Gu?owska, but in the evening they were forced to withdraw from the eastern part of the area.



Chamberlain dismisses recent German peace proposals outright.

On 03 October 1939, U-35 sighted the DIAMANTIS 40 miles west of Scillies off Lands End. DIAMANTIS was a Greek steamer of 4990t carrying 7700t of manganese from Freetown (West Africa) to Barrow-in-Furness. U-35 surfaced in bad weather and warned those aboard that their ship was about to be sunk. As the sea was rough and unsuitable for normal lifeboat operations, the crew of 28 men were taken aboard U-35. (http://www.u-35.com/diamantis/)


Life Magazine 16-10-1939

Quote
"When we were about 40 miles off Land’s End on Tuesday the U-boat came to the surface about 1.30 p.m. The commander hailed us and we stopped. He then told us that he was going to sink the Diamantis. He did not ask for our papers.
He ordered us to abandon ship, but when he saw that the sea was so rough that our small boats could not possibly live in it he took us aboard the submarine. Four of us were taken across at a time, this necessitating seven trips as there were 28 of us. We were not allowed to take our belongings. When we got aboard the submarine three or four torpedoes were fired at our vessel and she sank in about 20 minutes.
Many of us were wet to the skin and the submarine’s crew dried our clothes and gave us hot food and cigarettes.
Most of the members of my crew were able to sleep a little although all the time we were wishing that we were out of the submarine. The captain of the submarine spoke English and I was able to talk to him for short periods when he was off duty.
When we had been on board for about 34 hours we came to the surface off the Irish coast at about 5:30 yesterday evening. A collapsible boat was lowered and again seven trips were made to the shore. The submarine remained about 50 yards off the shore, which appeared to be deserted. Immediately the submarine had taken the boat aboard she submerged and that was the last we saw of her.
The crew waved good-bye to us. We were taken charge of by local policemen and the local people looked after us very well."

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October 4 1939

Poland
Nikita Krushchev (Secretary of the Ukrainian Communist Party) announces the "Communisation" of eastern Poland.


German soldiers parade in Pilsudski Square. Warsaw, Poland, October 4, 1939.

Quote
Battle of Kock
4 October

Due to the 13th Motorised Infantry Division's failure, the commander of XIV Corps. was forced to use the 29th Motorised Infantry Division. General Otto ordered the 93rdInfantry Regiment to move from the Wieprz river to D?blin. The 66thMotorised Infantry Regiment would attack Adamów i Wola Gu?owska, and the 33rd Infantry Regiment would clear the area to the north of Kock.

General Kleeberg suspected that the main combined attack of the 13th Motorised Division and the 29thMotorised Division would be on Adamów and Krzywda. He thought there was a chance to destroy the 13thMotorised Division as they had already sustained heavy casualties and materiel losses. The 'Zaza' cavalry division and the 50thInfantry Division would defend their positions, the 60thInfantry Division would attack the 13th Motorised Division. The Podlaska Cavalry Brigade would oppose the 29thMotorised Infantry Division.

In the morning, the main elements of 13thDivision attacked the 'Zaza' cavalry division and the 50thInfantry division. By 1200 noon part of the 66thInfantry Regiment had captured Zak?pie and advanced on Adamów where they were halted by the 1st Battalion of the 180th Infantry Regiment.

About 11 hours apart, first from the west and then the east, forces from the 66th regiment attacked the 'Olek' and 'Wilk' battalions who were defending Czarna. The defenders sustained heavy casualties from artillery fire and 'Wilk' was forced to withdraw to the eastern edge of the Adamów forest. 'Olek', moving to Adamów, later deployed to Gu?ów. Between 1000 and 1100 formations of the 66th Regiment attacked formations of cavalry from the 5th Uhlan Regiment who then withdrew from Wola Gu?owska and Adamów to the south-east.

At about 1200 the 66thInfantry Regiment attacked the 2ndSquadron of the 2ndUhlan Regiment in Zarzecze who withdrew with heavy casualties. The commander of the regiment moved the 4thSquadron south from Helenowka to try to assist the 2nd Squadron while the 3rdSquadron held the enemy to the west of Wola Gu?owska. The 3rd and 4th Squadrons, with elements of the 10th Uhlan Regiment fought near the Turzystwo village cemetery and the church in Wola Gu?owska. Ground was lost and regained repeatedly until an attack by the 2ndBattalion, 184thInfantry Regiment and the Uhlan Squadron enabled the Polish to dig in.



The Reichstag is summoned to meet on Friday, October 6th.

U-35 lands the 28-man crew of the torpedoed Greek transport, SS Diamantis, on the Kerry coast, in the southwest.

Quote
The Reich Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg)
STRICTLY SECRET
BERLIN, October 4, 1939.

No. 488

Reference your telegram No. 463.

I, too, do not consider the method Molotov suggested for the cession of the Lithuanian strip of territory as suitable. On the contrary, please ask Molotov not to discuss this cession of territory with the Lithuanians at present, but rather to have the Soviet Government assume the obligation toward Germany to leave this strip of territory unoccupied in the event of a posting of Soviet forces in Lithuania, which may possibly be contemplated, and furthermore to leave it to Germany to determine the date on which the cession of the territory should be formally effected. An understanding to this effect should be set forth in a secret exchange of letters between yourself and Molotov.

Reich Foreign Minister



Britain
Members of the Glamorgan Agricultural Committee met to voice concerns about "gossip and goings-on" between Land Army girls and soldiers billeted around the farms in the area. A strict 9 o'clock curfew was urged for the girls, aged 17 to 40. Alderman David Davis defended the women, saying: "They are good-looking English girls with the right spirit. Good girls do not need looking after."
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October 5 1939

Poland
Hitler tours the conquered capital of Warsaw, reviewing the victory parade, before returning to Berlin. Meanwhile, German forces continue mopping up operations against Polish troops still at large between the Vistula and Bug rivers.


Hitler showing his troops during a parade in Warsaw

Quote
The Battle of Kock
5 October

The commander of XIVth Motorized Corps. decided that he would use two of his divisions. They would attempt to encircle and destroy the Polish forces. The 13th Motorized Division advanced on Bystrzyca and Adamów then Wróblina and Stanin; the 29th Motorised Division advanced on Radyry? Ko?cielny and Wróblina where they met troops from the 13th Division.

General Kleeberg decided to destroy the 13th Motorised Infantry Division by using forces from the 50thand60th infantry divisions and the 'Zaza' cavalry division. The Podlaska cavalry brigade defended the position under Radory? Ko?cielny and Wróblina.

The Fighting in Wojcieszków, Gu?ów and Adamów

13th Division's artillery began to fire on the 180th Infantry Regiment battalion's positions in Adamów and the 'Olek' Battalion in Gu?ów grange at 0530. Two and a half hours later, the 66th Infantry Regiment's advance began. After a short fight at 1000, the Germans captured Adamów, they then attacked the Polish position on hill 170 and Gu?ów, which they captured after heavy fighting. The 66th Motorised Infantry Regiment took many losses. The division occupied positions on the eastern edge of Adamów forest. General Podhorski sent the 'Pils' cavalry brigade to support them. After contact with the enemy brigade, they began an attack on the German positions in the forest. They captured the forest and there they established defensive positions.

After the capture of Adamów and Gu?ów grange by the 66th Infantry Regiment, the 33rd Motorised Infantry Regiment began to advance, capturing Wojcieszkowoe and Glinne. The Polish 178th Infantry Regiment withdrew. The commander ordered his force to re-take Wojcieszkowo and Glinne, which they did, but they withdrew after taking heavy losses. The advance of the 180th Infantry Regiment on Adamów failed. Colonel Brzoza-Brzezina sent the 178th infantry regiment who soon met the German advance. The 1st battalion included a part company of sappers. The 2nd and 3rd battalions took heavy losses and withdrew to Burzec.

Meanwhile, an attack by the Polish 184th infantry regiment, with the support of a battalion of the 179th infantry regiment, recaptured the church and cemetery in Wola Gu?owska. An advance by the 182nd Infantry Regiment with the help of three 100mm howitzers broke the German defence in Helenów.

At 1600, the last German advance from Adamów began on positions of the 10th Uhlan Regiment in Krzywda forest by the 182nd regiment in Helenów and the 184th regiment in Wola Gu?owska. The 10th Uhlan Regiment, after a hard fight, withdrew into the forest. Most forces of the 'Brzoza' division successfully defended their positions in Burzec. The 182nd Infantry Regiment held their position. The 184th regiment had to withdraw due to a lack of artillery ammunition. During this time two key Polish advances began. The 2nd battalion of the 183rdInfantry Regiment, with artillery support, began an assault with the bayonet on the Germans who had attacked the southern wing of the 'Pils' cavalry brigade.

The assault succeeded and the Germans began to escape, being chased by infantry and cavalry. The rear of the southern wing of the 13th Motorised Division was attacked by the 'Edward' cavalry brigade, they captured Pozna? village, including a German artillery battery, (which had to be destroyed when the cavalry were forced to withdraw due to them coming under fire from another German artillery battery). Elements of the 13th Motorised Division began to withdraw. One of the last attacks was by the 29thMotorised Division on the 'Podlaska' Cavalry Brigade positions and the rear of the 'Brzoza' Division. After which both Polish formations withdrew to the south of Kryzywda.

The Polsie Independent Group surrendered on 6 October at 1000. In his last order General Kleeberg wrote that the reason for his decision to capitulate was that they were surrounded and ammunition and food were depleted.



Quote
The German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg) to the German Foreign Office

Telegram

VERY URGENT
Moscow, October 5, 1939-12:30 a. m.
STRICTLY SECRET

No. 470 of October 4

Reference my telegram No. 463 of October 3.

Immediately after Under State Secretary Gaus' first telephone call I transmitted to Molotov this morning the request not to divulge to the Lithuanian Foreign Minister anything regarding the German-Soviet understanding concerning Lithuania. Molotov asked me to see him at 5 p. m. and told me, that, unfortunately, he had been obliged yesterday to inform the Lithuanian Foreign Minister of this understanding, since he could not, out of loyalty to us, act otherwise. The Lithuanian delegation had been extremely dismayed and sad; they had declared that the loss of this area in particular would be especially hard to bear, since many prominent leaders of the Lithuanian people came from that part of Lithuania. This morning at 8 a. m. the Lithuanian Foreign Minister had flown back to Kowno, intending to return to Moscow in one or two days.

I said that I would immediately notify my Government by telephone, whereupon I called Herr Gaus. An hour later Molotov informed me that Stalin personally requested the German Government not to insist for the moment upon the cession of the strip of Lithuanian territory.

SCHULENBURG



Quote
The Reich Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in the Soviet Union, (Schulenburg)

Telegram

VERY URGENT
BERLIN, October 5, 1939-3:43 a. m.
Received Moscow, October 5, 1939-11:55 a. m.
STRICTLY SECRET

No. 497 of October 4

Referring to today's telephonic communication from the Ambassador.

Legation in Kowno is being instructed as follows:

1) Solely for your personal information, I am apprising you of the following: At the time of the signing of the German-Russian Non-aggression Pact on August 23, a strictly secret delimitation of the respective spheres of influence in Eastern Europe was also undertaken. In accordance therewith, Lithuania was to belong to the German sphere of influence, while in the territory of the former Polish state, the so-called Four-River Line, Pissa-Narew-Vistula-San, was to constitute the border. Even then I demanded that the district of Vilna go to Lithuania, to which the Soviet Government consented. At the negotiations concerning the Boundary and Friendship Treaty on September 28, the settlement was amended to the extent that Lithuania, including the Vilna area, was included in the Russian sphere of influence, for which in turn, in the Polish area, the province of Lublin and large portions of the province of Warsaw, including the pocket of territory of Suwalki, fell within the German sphere of influence. Since, by the inclusion of the Suwalki tract in the German sphere of influence, a difficulty in drawing the border line resulted, we agreed that in case the Soviets should take special measures in Lithuania, a small strip of territory in the southwest of Lithuania, accurately marked on the map, should fall to Germany.

2) Today Count von der Schulenburg reports that Molotov, contrary to our own intentions, notified the Lithuanian Foreign Minister last night of the confidential arrangement. Please now, on your part, inform the Lithuanian Government, orally and in strict confidence, of the matter, as follows:

As early as at the signing of the German-Soviet Non-aggression Pact of August 23, in order to avoid complications in Eastern Europe, conversations were held between ourselves and the Soviet Government concerning the delimitation of German and Soviet spheres of influence. In these conversations I had recommended restoring the Vilna district to Lithuania, to which the Soviet Government gave me its consent. In the negotiations concerning the Boundary and Friendship Treaty of September 28, as is apparent from the German-Soviet boundary demarcation which was published, the pocket of territory of Suwalki jutting out between Germany and Lithuania had fallen to Germany. As this created an intricate and impractical boundary, I had reserved for Germany a border correction in this area, whereby a small strip of Lithuanian territory would fall to Germany. The reward of Vilna to Lithuania was maintained in these negotiations also. You are now authorized to make it known to the Lithuanian Government that the Reich Government does not consider the question of this border revision timely at this moment. We make the proviso, however, that the Lithuanian Government treat this matter as strictly confidential. End of instruction for Kowno.

I request you to inform Herr Molotov of our communication to the Lithuanian Government. Further, please request of him, as already indicated in the preceding telegram, that the border strip of Lithuanian territory involved be left free in the event of a possible posting of Soviet troops in Lithuania and also that it be left to Germany to determine the date of the implementing of the agreement concerning the cession to Germany of the territory involved. Both of these points at issue should be set forth in a secret exchange of letters between yourself and Molotov.

RIBBENTROP



The Nazi anti-Semitic weekly, Der Sturmer, publishes a "Hymm of Hate" calling England the "curse of the world."

Quote
You we shall hate with enduring hate;
We shall not forbear from our hate;
Hate on water and hate on land,
Hate of the head and hate of the hand,
Hate of the hammer and hate of the crown,
Hate of seventy millions pressing down.
We love as one; we hate as one;
We have one foe, and one alone - ENGLAND !



Moscow
The Soviets continue their moves to strengthen their position in the Baltic by asking the Finnish government for new talks on altering their boundaries. Meanwhile, a Soviet-Latvian Pact is signed, giving the USSR the use of sea and air bases in Latvia. This pact is the second in a series designed to ensure Soviet control of the Baltic.

Eight British and French hunting groups are formed to hunt for the Graf Spee. At this stage the British and the French can afford to divert considerable forces to such a task. Meanwhile, the German pocket battleship Deutschland sinks the SS Stonegate.
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« Reply #48 on: 5 October 2009, 22:43:11 »
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You we shall hate with enduring hate;
We shall not forbear from our hate;
Hate on water and hate on land,
Hate of the head and hate of the hand,
Hate of the hammer and hate of the crown,
Hate of seventy millions pressing down.
We love as one; we hate as one;
We have one foe, and one alone - ENGLAND !



That sure is a lot of hate.  
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October 6 1939

Poland
Organized Polish resistance ended on October 6, 1939.  Some 100,000 Polish soldiers would escape to form the Free Polish Brigade in England, where they would fight in the air during the Battle of Britain and on land after the Normandy invasion.

China
Battle of Changsha (September 17, 1939 – October 6, 1939) was the first attempt by Japan to take the city of Changsha, China, during the second Sino-Japanese War.
Quote
The Japanese launched the attacks on September 17, when their forces in northern Jiangxi attacked westward toward Henan. However, the Japanese stretched too far out westward and were counter-attacked by Chinese forces from the south and the north, forcing them to retreat eastward.

On September 19, the Japanese then proceeded to attack the Chinese along the Sinchiang River. Even though the use of poison gas was prohibited by the Geneva Protocol, the Japanese army employed it on Chinese positions. On September 23 the Japanese drove the Chinese out of the Sinchiang river area, and the 6th and 13th Divisions crossed the river under artillery cover and advanced further south along the Miluo River.

Heavy fighting continued after the 23rd and the Chinese retreated southward to attract the Japanese while supporting battalions arrived on the east and the west for encirclement maneuver. On September 29 the Japanese reached the outskirts of Changsha. However, they were unable to conquer the city because their supply lines were cut off by the Chinese. By October 6 the Japanese forces at Changsha were decimated while the remnants retreated northward.



Finland
The Finns mobilize their standing military forces.

Quote
Hitler's speech to the Reichstag, Berlin
SPEECH OF OCTOBER 6, 1939

Background:

September 21 - United States Congress convenes in special session. President Roosevelt reads a message asking for an amendment of the Neutrality Act to provide for the lifting of the arms embargo.

September 24 - Mussolini makes a speech stating that there is no reason to continue the war now that the Polish question has been settled.

September 27 - Warsaw surrenders.

September 28 - Germany and Russia divide Poland between them. Russia makes an agreement with Estonia, thus gaining naval bases on the Baltic.

October 2 - Pan-American conference decides on the establishment of a sea safety zone around the Western Hemisphere.

October 5 - Russia signs a mutual-aid pact with Latvia, obtaining naval bases on the Baltic
.

The Speech

IT WAS a fateful hour, on the first of September of this year, when you met here as representatives of the German people. I had to inform you then of serious decisions which had been forced upon us as a result of the intransigent and provocative action of a certain State.

Since then five weeks have gone by. I have asked you to come here today in order to give you an account of what has passed, the necessary insight into what is happening at present and, so far as that is possible, into the future as well.

For the last two days our towns and villages have been decorated with flags and symbols of the new Reich. Bells are ringing to celebrate a great victory, which, of its kind, is unique in history. A State of no less than 36,000,000 inhabitants, with an army of almost fifty infantry and cavalry divisions, took up arms against us. Their arms were far-reaching, their confidence in their ability to crush Germany knew no bounds.

After one week of fighting there could no longer be any doubt as to the outcome. Whenever Polish troops met German units, they were driven back or dispersed. Poland's ambitious strategy for a great offensive against the territory of the Reich collapsed within the first forty-eight hours of the campaign. Death-defying in attack, advancing at an unconquerable rate of progress, infantry, armored detachments, air force and units of the navy were soon dictating the course of events.

They were masters of the situation throughout the campaign. In a fortnight's time the major part of the Polish Army was either scattered, captured, or surrounded. In the meantime, however, the German Army had covered distances and occupied regions which twenty-five years ago would have taken over fourteen months to conquer.

Even though a number of peculiarly gifted newspaper strategists in other parts of the world attempted to describe the pace at which this campaign progressed as not coming up to Germany's expectations, we ourselves all know that in all history there has scarcely been a comparable military achievement.

That the last remnants of the Polish Army were able to hold out in Warsaw, Modlin, and on Hela Peninsula until October 1 was not due to their prowess in arms, but only to our cool thinking and our sense of responsibility.

I forbade the sacrifice of more human lives than was absolutely necessary. That is to say, I deliberately released the German Supreme Command from adherence to a principle still observed in the Great War demanding that for the sake of prestige certain objectives must under all circumstances be reached within a certain time limit.

Everything which it is imperative to do will be done regardless of sacrifice, but what can be avoided will not be done.

There would have been no difficulty for us in breaking the resistance of Warsaw between the 10th and 12th of September, just as we finally broke it September 25-27, only that in the first place I wanted to spare German lives and in the second place I still clung to the hope, misdirected though it was, that the Polish side might for once be guided by responsible common sense instead of by irresponsible lunacy. But in this instance we were once more confronted with the spectacle which we had witnessed before on the largest possible scale.

The attempt to convince the responsible Polish command - in so far as it existed - that it was futile and in fact insane to attempt resistance, especially in a city of more than a million inhabitants, proved entirely fruitless. A 'generalissimo,' who himself took to inglorious flight, forced upon the capital of his country a resistance which could never lead to anything but its destruction.

Since it was realized that Warsaw's fortifications alone were not likely to withstand the German attack, the entire city was converted into a fortress and barricaded in every direction. Batteries were mounted in every square and great courtyard, thousands of machine-gun posts manned and the whole population called up to take part in the fighting.

Sheer sympathy for women and children caused me to make an offer to those in command of Warsaw at least to let civilian inhabitants leave the city. I declared a temporary armistice and safeguards necessary for evacuation, with the result that we all waited for emissaries just as fruitlessly as we had waited at the end of August for a Polish negotiator. The proud Polish commander of the city did not even condescend to reply.

To make sure, I extended the time limit and ordered bombers and heavy artillery to attack only military objectives, repeating my proposal in vain. I thereupon made an offer that the whole suburb of Praga would not be bombarded at all, but should be reserved for the civilian population in order to make it possible for them to take refuge there.

This proposal, too, was treated with contempt on the part of the Poles. Twice I attempted to evacuate at least the international colony from the city. In this I finally succeeded after great difficulties, in the case of the Russian colony, actually at the last moment. I then ordered a general attack on the city for September 25.

The same defenders who at first considered it beneath their dignity even to reply to my humane proposals, made on grounds of humanity, then very rapidly changed face. The German attack opened on September 25, and Warsaw capitulated on the 27th.

With 120,000 men the defenders did not even attempt to break through as our German General Litzmann once did at Brzesiny with a vastly inferior force, but, on the contrary, preferred to lay down arms.

Any comparison with the Alcazar is entirely out of place. There for weeks on end Spanish heroes defied the bitterest attacks and earned a right to lasting fame. Here, on the other hand, a great city was unscrupulously exposed to destruction, only to capitulate after a forty-eight-hour assault.

The Polish soldiers as individuals fought bravely on many occasions, but their officers, beginning with the command, can only be described as irresponsible, unconscientious and inefficient. Before the bombardment of Hela I had also given orders that not a single man should be sacrificed until the most careful preparation for action had been made. There, too, surrender came at the very moment when the Germans had at length announced their intention of attacking and had begun to do so.

I have made these statements, gentlemen, with the object of forestalling the invention of historical legends, for if legend is to be woven around any who took part in this campaign, it should be woven around German soldiers who, during the attack and on the march, added yet another page to their immortal glorious record.

Legends could be woven, too, around the heavy artillery which performed untold feats of endurance in rushing to the assistance of the infantry. Men of our armored mechanized units who, with dauntless courage and heedless of counterattacks and numerical superiority of the enemy, attacked again and again are worthy of this legend.

Such a legend should also immortalize the airmen who, fearless of death and knowing that if anti-aircraft fire did not kill them in the air, they would, if forced to make a parachute landing, inevitably suffer frightful death, continued with steadfast courage to carry out reconnaissance flights and attacks with bombs or machine-gun fire whenever they were commanded to do so and whenever they found objectives.

The same is true of the brave men of our submarine fleet. If, within four weeks, we totally annihilated a State with a population of 36,000,000 and corresponding military strength, and if during this whole period our victorious arms have not suffered a single setback, this cannot be ascribed simply to good luck but constituted certain proof of fine training, excellent leadership, and indomitable courage.

Our knowledge of the strength of our fighting forces fills us all with a well of confidence, for they have not only proved that they are strong in attack, but also that they are strong in retaining what they have won. The excellent training received by the individual officers and men has been amply justified. It is this training which is responsible for the extremely few casualties which - hard as they are for the individual to bear - are on the whole far less than we ventured to expect.

Admittedly the total number of casualties gives no idea of the severity of the various encounters, for certain regiments and divisions suffered very heavy losses when they were attacked by Polish forces which were numerically superior or came into conflict with such forces when they themselves were attacking....

As I am now about to make known to you the number of our dead and wounded, I request that you rise from your seats. Though owing to the training given our troops, the effectiveness of our weapons and the command of our forces the figures do not amount to even one-twentieth of what our apprehensions had been at the outset of the campaign, we will never forget that every soldier who fell fighting brought for his people and our Reich the greatest sacrifice that man can bring.

According to the casualty list of up to September 30, 1939, which will not change materially, the total losses for the army, navy and air force, including officers, are as follows: 10,572 killed; 30,322 wounded; 3,404 missing. Unfortunately, of those missing a certain number who fell into Polish hands will probably be found to have been massacred and killed.

All our gratitude is due to the victims of the campaign in Poland, while the wounded may be assured of our best attention and care, and the families of those killed of our sympathy and help.

By the capitulation of the fortresses of Warsaw and Modlin and the surrender of Hela, the Polish campaign has come to an end. The task of safeguarding the country against vagabonding marauders, gangs of robbers and individual groups of terrorists will be carried through with all energy.

The outcome of the war was the annihilation of all Polish armies, followed by the dissolution of the Polish State. Six hundred and ninety-four thousand prisoners have set out on their march to Berlin. The amount of war material captured cannot yet be estimated.

Since the outbreak of the war, the German forces have at the same time in calm preparedness taken up positions in the West ready to meet the enemy.

The naval forces of the Reich have fulfilled their duty in the attack on the Westerplatte, Gdynia, Oxhoeft and Hela, and in protecting the Baltic Sea and the German North Sea coast our submarines are fighting in a spirit worthy of the memory of our heroes in the last war.

In the face of this historically unprecedented collapse of a structure purporting to be a State, the question in almost everybody's mind is as to the reason for such a phenomenon.

Versailles was the cradle of a Polish State which had emerged from the untold sacrifice of blood - not of Polish but of German and Russian blood. Poland, who for centuries past had proved herself incapable of existence, was in 1916 artificially begotten and in 1919 no less artificially born by a German government just as incapable of existence.

In utter disregard of almost 500 years of experience, without consideration for the lesson of historical development during many centuries, without appreciation for ethnographic conditions and with no regard for all economic expediencies, a State was constructed at Versailles which, according to its whole nature, was sooner or later bound to become the cause of a most serious crisis.

A man who, I am sorry to say, now ranks among our fiercest enemies, at that time clearly foresaw all this. I mean Mr. Lloyd George. Like so many others he sounded warning, not only at the time of the creation of that structure but also in the course of its subsequent expansion which had taken place in utter disregard of reason and right.

At that time he expressed apprehension that in that State an accumulation of conditions was being created containing the risk of conflicts which sooner or later might lead to great European complications.

As a matter of fact, conditions surrounding the structure of this new so-called State, as far as its nationalities were concerned, could not be clarified until now. It requires some knowledge of Polish census methods to realize how utterly alien to truth, and therefore irrelevant, statistics on the national composition of that territory were and are.

In 1919 the Poles laid claims to the territory where they pretended to have a majority of 95 per cent - in East Prussia, for instance - whereas a plebiscite later showed the Poles actually had reached a figure of 2 per cent.

In the State finally created, which contained parts of former Russia, Austria, and Germany, non-Polish elements were so brutally ill-treated, suppressed, tyrannized and tortured that any plebiscite depended entirely on the good will of local administrative officials for producing such results as were desired or demanded.

Nor did indisputable Polish elements receive much better recognition. And then, on top of all this, statesmen of our Western Hemisphere spoke of this kind of creation as of democracy of the fundamentals of their own system.

In that country there ruled a minority of aristocratic or non-aristocratic large, vast estate-owners and wealthy intellectuals to whom under the most favorable circumstances their own Polish compatriots were nothing but mass man power. For that reason the regime was never backed by more than 15 per cent of the total population.

The economic distress and low cultural level corresponded with these conditions. In 1919 this State took over from Prussia and also from Austria provinces which had been developed through hundreds of years of hard toil, some of them being in a most flourishing condition. Today, after the elapse of twenty years, they are at a point of gradually turning into steppes again.

The Vistula, the river whose estuary has always been of such tremendous importance for the Polish Government, owing to the lack of any and all care is now already unsuitable for any real traffic and, depending on the season, is either an unruly stream or a dried-up rivulet.

Towns as well as villages are in a state of neglect. The roads, with very few exceptions, are badly out of repair and in a terrible condition. Anyone who travels in that country for two or three weeks will get the proper idea of the classical German term 'Polnische Wirtschaft,' meaning a 'Polish state of affairs!'

In spite of the unbearable conditions prevailing in that country, Germany endeavored to establish peaceful relations with it. During the years 1933 and 1934 I endeavored to find some equitable compromise between our national interests and our desire for the maintenance of peace with that country. There was a time, when Marshal Pilsudski was still alive, when it seemed possible for this hope to materialize were it only to a modest extent.

Unlimited patience and still greater self-restraint were called for because many of the regional Polish administrative officials took the understanding between Germany and Poland to be merely a license for the persecution and annihilation of the Germans in Poland with even less risk. In the few years up to 1922 more than one-and-a-half million Germans had been forced to leave their homes. They were hunted out, often without being able to take even their most necessary clothing.

When, in 1938, the Olsa territory went to Poland, they used the same methods against the Czechs who lived there. Often within a few hours many thousands of these had to leave their working places, their homes, their villages and towns at the shortest notice without being allowed to take anything more with them than a suitcase or a little box with clothing.

Things like this went on for years, and for years we looked on, always striving to attain some improvement in the lot of the unhappy Germans living there by establishing closer relations. It was, however, impossible to overlook the fact that every German attempt thereby to secure the removal of these intolerable conditions was taken by the Polish rulers to be nothing more than a sign of weakness, if not of stupidity.

When the Polish Government proceeded in a thousand ways gradually to subjugate Danzig as well, I endeavored, by means of practical proposals, to secure a solution whereby Danzig, in accordance with the wishes of its population, could be nationally and politically united with Germany without impairing the economic needs and so-called rights of Poland. If today any one alleges that these were ultimative demands, that allegation is a lie.

The proposals for a solution, as communicated to the Polish Government in March, 1939, were nothing but the suggestions and the ideas already discussed long ago between myself and Polish Foreign Minister Beck, except for the fact that in the spring of 1939 I thought I would be able to facilitate the acceptance of these proposals by the Polish Government in the face of their own public opinion by the offer to concede to them an equivalent.

The fact that the Polish Government at that time refused to consider a discussion of these proposals was due to two reasons: for one thing, the inflamed chauvinist powers behind the Government never intended to solve the problem of Danzig, but on the contrary already lived in the hope, expounded later in publications and speeches, of acquiring territory from the Reich far beyond the bounds of Danzig; in fact, they hoped to be in a position to attack and conquer.

'These aims, far from stopping, at East Prussia, were climaxed by a flood of publications and a continuous sequence of speeches, addresses, resolutions, etc., in addition to the incorporation of East Prussia, for the annexation of Pomerania and Silesia. The Oder represented the minimum of frontier claims and finally even the Elbe was described as the natural dividing line between Germany and Poland.

These demands, which today may appear crazy but which were then presented with fanatical seriousness, were based in a simply ridiculous manner on the assumption of a 'Polish mission of civilization' and declared justified because they were supposed to be capable of fulfillment in view of the strength of the Polish Army.

While I was inviting the then Polish Foreign Minister to take part in a conference for the discussion of our proposals, the Polish military generals were already writing about the inefficiency of the German Army, the cowardice of the German soldiers, the inferiority of the German weapons, the obvious superiority of the Polish forces and the certainty, in case of war, of defeating the Germans at the gates of Berlin and of annihilating the Reich.

The man, however, who intended, as he expressed it, to hack the German Army to pieces at the gates of Berlin, was not just an illiterate, insignificant Pole but their commander-in-chief, Rydz-Smigly, who at present resides in Rumania.

Violations and insults which Germany and her armed forces had to put up with from these military dilettantes would never have been tolerated by any other State, just as they were not expected from any other nation. No French or English generals would ever have presumed to express a judgment of the German armed forces similar to that which we heard read from the Polish side for years, particularly since March, 1939; and on the other hand no German general would have spoken in that manner of English, French or Italian soldiers.

A great deal of self-control was needed to keep calm in face of these simply shameless insults, in spite of the fact that we knew that the German armed forces could destroy and sweep away the whole of this ridiculous State and its army within a few weeks.

But this attitude, for which the Polish leaders themselves were responsible, was the fundamental reason why the Polish Government refused even to discuss the German proposals.

Another reason was that fatal promise of guarantee given to the State which, although not menaced at all, very rapidly became convinced it could afford to challenge a Great Power without risk once it was assured of the support of two Great Powers, perhaps even hoping this way to lay the foundation for realization of all its own insane ambitions.

For, as soon as Poland felt certain of that guarantee, minorities living in that country had to suffer what amounted to a reign of terror. I do not consider it my task to speak of the lot of the Ukrainians, or White Russian population, whose interests now lie in the hands of Russia.

However, I do feel it my duty to speak of the lot of those helpless thousands of Germans who carried on the tradition of those who first brought culture to that country centuries ago and whom the Poles now began to oppress and drive out. Since March, 1939, they had been victims of truly satanic terrorization. How many of them had been abducted and where they are cannot be stated even today.

Villages with hundreds of German inhabitants are now left without men because they all have been killed. In others women were violated and murdered, girls and children outraged and killed. In 1598 an Englishman - Sir George Carew - wrote in his diplomatic reports to the English Government that the outstanding features of Polish character were cruelty and lack of moral restraint.

Since that time this cruelty has not changed. Just as tens of thousands of Germans were slaughtered and sadistically tormented to death, so German soldiers captured in fighting were tortured and massacred.

This pet lapdog of the Western democracies cannot be considered a cultured nation at all.

For more than four years I fought in the great war on the Western Front, but such things did not happen on either side.

Things that have occurred in Poland, in the past few months, and especially the last four weeks, constitute flaming accusations against those responsible for the creation of a so-called State lacking every national, historical, cultural, and moral foundation. Had only 1 per cent of these atrocities been committed in any part of the world against the English people, I should be interested to see the indignation of those gentlemen who today in hypocritical horror condemn the German or Russian procedure.

No! To grant guarantees to this State and this Government as was done could only lead to appalling disasters. Neither the Polish Government, nor the small cliques supporting it, nor the Polish nation as such were capable of measuring the responsibilities which were implied in such guarantees in Poland's favor by half of Europe.

The passionate sentiment thus aroused, together with the sense of that security which had been unconditionally guaranteed to them, counted for the behavior of the Polish Government during the period between April and August this year.

It was also the cause of the attitude they adopted toward my conciliatory proposals. The Government rejected these proposals because they felt themselves protected, or even encouraged, by public opinion and public opinion protected them and encouraged them on their way because it had been left in ignorance by its Government and particularly because in its every action it felt itself sufficiently protected from without.

All this led to an increase in the number of appalling atrocities committed against German nationals in Poland and to the rejection of all proposals for a solution and in the end to the steadily growing encroachments on actual Reich territory. It was quite comprehensible that such a state of mind interpreted German longsuffering as a weakness, that is, that every concession on Germany's part was regarded as proof of the possibility of some further aggressive steps.

A warning given Poland to refrain from sending Danzig any more notes amounting to ultimata and above all to desist from economic strangulation of that city did not ease the situation in the least; it resulted, in fact, in complete stoppage of all Danzig means of communication.

The warning to suspend or at least to take steps against the unceasing cases of murder, ill treatment and torture of German nationals in Poland had the effect of increasing these atrocities and of calling for more bloodthirsty harangues and provocative speeches from the Polish local administrative officials and military authorities.

The German proposals aiming at a last-minute agreement on a just and equitable basis were answered by a general mobilization. The German request that an intermediary should be sent, founded on a proposal made by Great Britain, was not complied with and on the second day was answered by an offensive declaration.

Under these circumstances it was obvious that if further incursions into the Reich's territory occurred, Germany's patience would be at an end. What the Poles had erroneously interpreted as weakness was in reality our sense of responsibility and my firm determination to come to an understanding if that at all was possible.

Since they believed that this patience and longsuffering was a sign of weakness which would allow them to do anything, no other course remained than to show them their mistake by striking back with the weapons which they themselves had used for years.

Under these blows their State has crumbled to pieces in a few weeks and is now swept from the earth. One of the most senseless deeds perpetrated at Versailles is thus a thing of the past.

If this step on Germany's part has resulted in a community of interests with Russia, that is due not only to the similarity of the problems affecting the two States, but also to that of the conclusions which both States had arrived at with regard to their future relationship.

In my speech at Danzig I already declared that Russia was organized on principles which differ from those held in Germany. However, since it became clear that Stalin found nothing in the Russian-Soviet principles which should prevent him from cultivating friendly relations with States of a different political creed, National Socialist Germany sees no reason why she should adopt another criterion. The Soviet Union is the Soviet Union, National Socialist Germany is National Socialist Germany.

But one thing is certain: from the moment when the two States mutually agreed to respect each other's distinctive regime and principles, every reason for any mutually hostile attitude had disappeared. Long periods in the history of both nations have shown that the inhabitants of these two largest States in Europe were never happier than when they lived in friendship with each other. The Great War, which once made Germany and Russia enemies, was disastrous for both countries.

It is easy to understand that the capitalist States of the West are interested today in playing off these two States and their principles against each other. For this purpose, and until it is realized, they certainly regard the Soviet Union as a sufficiently respectable partner for the conclusion of a useful military pact. But they regard it as perfidy that their honorable approaches were rejected and in their place rapprochement took place between those two very powers who had every reason for seeking happiness for their respective peoples in developing their economic relationship along the lines of peaceful co-operation.

Months ago I stated in the Reichstag that the conclusion of the German-Russian non-aggression pact marked the turning point in the whole German foreign policy. The new pact of friendship and mutual interest since signed between Germany and the Soviet Union will insure not only peace but a constant satisfactory co-operation for both States.

Germany and Russia together will relieve one of the most acute danger spots in Europe of its threatening character and will, each in her own sphere, contribute to the welfare of the peoples living there, thus aiding to European peace in general. If certain circles today see in this pact either the breakdown of Russia or Germany - as suits them best - I should like to give them my answer.

For many years imaginary aims were attributed to Germany's foreign policy which at best might be taken to have arisen in the mind of a schoolboy.

At a moment when Germany is struggling to consolidate her own living space, which only consists of a few hundred thousand square kilometers, insolent journalists in countries which rule over 40,000,000 square kilometers state Germany is aspiring to world domination!

German-Russian agreements should prove immensely comforting to these worried sponsors of universal liberty, for do they not show most emphatically that their assertions as to Germany's aiming at d domination of the Urals, the Ukraine, Rumania, etc., are only excrescences of their own unhealthy war-lord fantasy?

In one respect it is true Germany's decision is irrevocable, namely in her intention to see peaceful, stable, and thus tolerable conditions introduced on her eastern frontiers; also it is precisely here that Germany's interests and desires correspond entirely with those of the Soviet Union. The two States are resolved to prevent problematic conditions arising between them which contain germs of internal unrest and thus also of external disorder and which might perhaps in any way unfavorably affect the relationship of these two great States with one another.

Germany and the Soviet Union have therefore clearly defined the boundaries of their own spheres of interest with the intention of being singly responsible for law and order and preventing everything which might cause injury to the other partner.

The aims and tasks which emerge from the collapse of the Polish State are, insofar as the German sphere of interest is concerned, roughly as follows:

1. Demarcation of the boundary for the Reich, which will do justice to historical, ethnographical and economic facts.

2. Pacification of the whole territory by restoring a tolerable measure of peace and order.

3. Absolute guarantees of security not only as far as Reich territory is concerned but for the entire sphere of interest.

4. Re-establishment and reorganization of economic life and of trade and transport, involving development of culture and civilization.

5. As the most important task, however, to establish a new order of ethnographic conditions, that is to say, resettle ment of nationalities in such a manner that the process ultimately results in the obtaining of better dividing lines than is the case at present. In this sense, however, it is not a case of the problem being restricted to this particular sphere, but of a task with far wider implications for the east and south of Europe are to a large extent filled with splinters of the German nationality, whose existence they cannot maintain.

In their very existence lie the reason and cause for continual international disturbances. In this age of the principle of nationalities and of racial ideals, it is utopian to believe that members of a highly developed people can be assimilated without trouble.

It is therefore essential for a far-sighted ordering of the life of Europe that a resettlement should be undertaken here so as to remove at least part of the material for European conflict. Germany and the Union of Soviet Republics have come to an agreement to support each other in this matter.

The German Government will, therefore, never allow the residual Polish State of the future to become in any sense a disturbing factor for the Reich itself and still less a source of disturbance between the German Reich and Soviet Russia.

As Germany and Soviet Russia undertake this work of re-establishment, the two States are entitled to point out that the attempt to solve this problem by the methods of Versailles has proved an utter failure. In fact it had to fail because these tasks cannot be settled sitting around a table or by simple decrees. Most of the statesmen who in Versailles had to decide on these complicated problems did not possess the slightest historical training, indeed they often had not even the vaguest idea of the nature of the task with which they were faced.

Neither did they bear any responsibility for the consequences of their action. Recognition that their work might be faulty was of no significance because in practice there was no way for a real revision. It is true that in the Treaty of Versailles provision was made for keeping open the possibility of such revisions but in reality all attempts to attain such a revision miscarried and they were bound to miscarry because the League of Nations as the competent authority was no longer morally justified to carry out such a procedure.

After America had been first to refuse to ratify the Treaty of Versailles, or to join the League of Nations, and later when other countries also felt they could no longer reconcile their presence in this organization with the interests of their respective countries, the League degenerated more and more into a clique of parties interested in the Versailles dictate.

At any rate it is a fact that none of the revisions recognized from the outset as necessary had ever been effected by the League of Nations.

Since in our time it became customary to regard a refugee government as still existing even if it consists of three members provided they have taken with them sufficient gold so as not to be an economic burden to the democratic country offering hospitality, it may be assumed that the League of Nations, too, will carry on bravely if but two nations sit there together. Perhaps even one will do!

But according to the government of the League any revision of the Versailles clauses would still be adjudicated exclusively by this illustrious organization - that is, in other words, revision would be practically impossible.

The League of Nations is not living but already a dead thing, nevertheless the peoples concerned are not dead but alive and they will uphold their vital interests, however incapable the League of Nations may be of seeing, grasping, or respecting those interests.

National Socialism is not a phenomenon which has grown up in Germany with the malicious intent of thwarting League efforts at revision, but a movement which arose because for fifteen years the most natural human and social rights of a great nation had been suppressed and denied redress.

And I personally take exception at seeing foreign states- men stand up and call me guilty of having broken my word because I have now put these revisions through.

On the contrary I pledged my sacred word to the German people to do away with the Treaty of Versailles and to restore to them their natural and vital rights as a great nation.

The extent to which I am securing these vital rights is modest.

This I ask: If forty-six million Englishmen claim the right to rule over forty million square kilometers of the earth, it cannot be wrong for eighty-two million Germans to demand the right to live on 800,000 square kilometers, to till their fields and to follow their trades and callings, and if they further demand the restitution of those colonial possessions which formerly were their property, which they had not taken away from anybody by robbery or war but honestly acquired by purchase, exchange and treaties. Moreover, in all my demands, I always first tried to obtain revisions by way of negotiation.

I did, it is true, refuse to submit the question of German vital rights to some non-competent international body in the form of humble requests. Just as little as I suppose that Great Britain would plead for respect of her vital interests, so little ought one to expect the same of National Socialist Germany. I have, however, and I must emphasize this fact most solemnly, limited in the extreme the measure of these revisions of the Versailles Treaty.

Notably in all those cases where I did not see any menace to the natural, vital interests of my people, I have myself advised the German nation to hold back. Yet these eighty million people must live somewhere. There exists a fact that not even the Versailles Treaty has been able to destroy; although it has in the most unreasonable manner dissolved States, torn asunder regions economically connected, cut communication lines, etc., yet the people, the living substance of flesh and blood, has remained and will forever remain in the future.

It cannot be denied that since the German people has found its resurrection through National Socialism, the relation existing between Germany and the surrounding nations has been cleared up to a great extent.

The uncertainty that today is weighing down the common life of nations is not due to German demands, but to the malignant insinuations published in the so-called democracies.

The German demands themselves were formulated in a very clear and precise way. They have, it is true, found their fulfillment not thanks to the insight of the League of Nations but thanks to the dynamics of natural development.

The aim of the German foreign policy as pursued by me has never been other than to guarantee the existence - that is to say, the life - of the German people, to remove the injustice and nonsense contained in a treaty which not only destroyed Germany economically but has drawn the victor nations into disaster as well.

For the rest, however, our whole work of rebuilding was concerned with the home affairs of the Reich and no country in the world had a greater longing for peace than the German people. It was fortunate for humanity and no misfortune at all that I succeeded in removing the craziest, most impossible clauses of the Versailles Treaty by peaceful methods and without compromising foreign statesmen in the internal politics of their countries.

That some details of this action may have been painful to certain interested parties is comprehensible. But the merit is all the greater for the fact that this reorganization was brought about without bloodshed in all cases but the last one.

The last revision of this treaty could have been brought about in exactly the same peaceful way had not two circumstances I have mentioned had the contrary effect. That is chiefly the fault of those who not only tool; no pleasure in the former peaceful revision, but on the contrary complained of the fact that by peaceful methods a new Central Europe was being built up; that is to say, a Central Europe that was able once more to give its inhabitants work and bread.

As I have already mentioned, it was one of the aims of the Government of the Reich to clear up the relation between ourselves and our neighbors. Allow me to point out some facts that cannot be refuted by the scribblings of international press liars.

First. Germany has concluded non-aggression pacts with the Baltic States. Her interests there are of an exclusively economic nature.

Second. In former times Germany never had any conflict of interests or indeed litigation points with the Northern States and she has none today either.

Third. Germany has taken no steps in regard to the German territory handed over to Denmark under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles; she has, on the contrary, established local and friendly relations with Denmark. We have claimed no revision, but we have concluded a non-aggression pact with Denmark. Our relations with that country are thus directed toward unswervingly loyal and friendly co-operation.

Fourth. Holland: the new Reich has endeavored to continue the traditional friendship with Holland; it did not take over any differences between the two States nor did it create new ones.

Fifth. Belgium: immediately after I had taken over the Government I tried to establish friendly relations with Belgium. 1 renounced any revision as well as any desire for revision. The Reich has put forward no claim which might in any way have been regarded as a threat to Belgium.

Sixth. Switzerland: Germany adopted the same attitude toward Switzerland. The Reich Government has never given the slightest cause for doubt regarding their desires to establish friendly relations with the country. Moreover, they themselves have never brought forward any complaint regarding the relations between the two countries.

Seventh. Immediately after the Anschluss [with Austria] became an accomplished fact, I informed Yugoslavia that the frontier in common with that country would henceforth be regarded as unalterable by Germany and that we wished only to live in peace and friendship with that country.

Eighth. The bond which binds us to Hungary is old and traditional, one of close and sincere friendship. In this instance, too, our frontiers are unalterable.

Ninth. Slovakia appealed to Germany of her own accord for assistance in connection with her establishment as a State. Her independence is recognized and not infringed upon by the Reich.

Tenth. However, it is not only with these states but also with the Great Powers that Germany has improved and settled those relations which to a certain extent had been adversely affected by the Treaty of Versailles.

My first step was to bring about an alteration in the relations between Italy and the Reich. The existing frontiers between these two States have been formally recognized as unalterable by both countries. Any possibility of a clash of interests of a territorial nature has been removed. One-time enemies during the World War, they have in the meantime become sincere friends.

Establishment of friendly relations was not the final development, but, in the periods which followed, this led to the signing of a cordial pact based on our mutual philosophies and political interests which has proved itself to be an important factor in European co-operation.

My chief endeavor, however, has been to rid our relations with France of all trace of ill will and render them tolerable for both nations. I once set forth with the utmost clarity Germany's claims in this domain and have never gone back on that declaration. Return of the Saar territory was one demand which I regarded as an indispensable pre-condition of Franco-German understandings.

After France herself had found a just solution of this problem, Germany had no further claims against France. No such claim exists any longer and no such claim shall ever be put forward. That is to say, I have refused even to mention the problem of Alsace-Lorraine not because I was forced to keep silent, but because this matter does not constitute a problem which could ever interfere with Franco-German relations.

I accepted the decision made in 1919 and refused to consider ever embarking upon war for the sake of a question which, comparatively speaking, is of slight importance for Germany's vital interests, but which is certainly likely to involve every second generation in a deadly war fear. France realized this.

It is impossible for any French statesman to get up and declare I have ever made any demands upon France the fulfillment of which would be incompatible with French honor or French interest. It is, however, true that instead of demands I have always expressed to France my desire to bury forever our ancient enmity and bring together these two nations, both of which have such glorious pasts.

Among the German people, I have done my utmost to eradicate the idea of everlasting enmity and to inculcate in its place a respect for the great achievements of the French nation and for its history, just as every German soldier has the greatest respect for the feats of the French Army. I have devoted no less effort to the achievement of an Anglo-German understanding, nay, more than that, of an Anglo-German friendship.

At no time and in no place have I ever acted contrary to British interests. Unfortunately I have only too often been forced to guard against instances of British interference in German affairs, even in cases which did not concern Great Britain in the least. I actually considered it as one of my life aims to reconcile these two peoples, not only through mutual understanding but through inner sympathy.

The German nation has gladly followed my lead in this respect. If my endeavors have been unsuccessful, it is only because of an animosity on the part of certain British statesmen and journalists, which has deeply affected me personally.

They made no secret of the fact that - for reasons which are unfathomable to us - their sole aim was to seize the first opportunity in order to resume the fight with Germany. The fewer reasons of substantial nature these men have for their schemes, the more they attempt to motivate their actions with empty phrases and assertions.

But I believe even today that there can only he real peace in Europe and throughout the world if Germany and England come to an understanding. Because of this conviction I have often shown the way to an understanding. If in the end there was not the desired result, it was really not my fault.

Finally, I now also attempted to bring the relations between the Reich and Soviet Russia to a normal and, in the end, to a friendly basis. Thanks to a similar trend of thought on the part of Mr. Stalin these endeavors have now been realized. Now with that State lasting and friendly relations have been established, the effect of which will be a blessing to both nations.

Thus the revision of the Versailles Treaty carried through by me did not cause any chaos in Europe, but on the contrary produced the prerequisite of clear, stable and bearable conditions.

Only those who detest this order of things in Europe and wish for disorder can feel hostile to these actions. If, however, certain people think themselves obliged to reject with a hypocritical air the method by which a tolerable order of things was established in Central Europe, then my only reply to them is that in the end it is not so much the method but the useful result that counts.

Before I came into power Central Europe, that is to say not only Germany but also the surrounding States, was sinking into the hopeless distress of unemployment and production had decreased, involving an automatic jump in commodity consumption. The standard of living went down. Distress and misery were the result.

No criticizing foreign statesman can deny that not only in the old Reich but also in all the territory now merged with it, it has become possible to remove these indications of decay in the face of the most adverse conditions.

It has thus been proved that only as an entity is this Central European space capable of existence and that whoever breaks up that entity commits a crime against millions of people.

To have wiped out that crime does not amount to a breach of my word, but to me is honor itself; I am proud of it as my deed before history.

Neither the German people nor myself has taken an oath on the Treaty of Versailles; I have merely taken an oath on the welfare of my people, who gave me my mandate and on the welfare of those whom destiny has placed within our living space, thus inseparably binding them to our own welfare.

To guarantee the existence and thus the life of all of them is my sole concern.

Any attempt to criticize, judge or reject my actions from the rostrum of international presumption has no foundation before history and personally leaves me stone-cold. I was called to my post by the confidence vested in me by the German people, whose attitude toward me is only strengthened by any such attempt at criticism or interference from abroad.

Moreover, previous to each single revision I have put forward proposals. I had attempted, by means of negotiations, to achieve and secure what was absolutely indispensable. In a certain number of cases I was successful. In other cases, I am sorry to say, my readiness to negotiate and perhaps also the small extent of my demands and the modesty of my proposals were interpreted as a sign of weakness and therefore rejected. Nobody could have regretted this more than I did.

There are, however, in the life of nations certain necessities which, if they are not brought about by peaceful methods, must be realized by force, however regrettable this appears, not only to the life of the individual citizen but also to the life of the community. It is undeniable that the greater interests common to all must never be impaired by the stubbornness or ill will of individuals and communities. To Poland, too, I made the most moderate proposals.

They were not only rejected, but on the contrary brought forth the general mobilization of that State, for which reasons were advanced which proved conclusively exactly that it was the very modesty of my proposals which was considered a confirmation of my weakness, nay, even of my fear. Really, such an experience is apt to make anyone shrink from ever again making any reasonable and moderate proposals.

Also at present I once more read in certain newspapers that every attempt to bring about a peaceful settlement of relations between Germany on the one hand and France and England on the other was doomed to failure, and that any proposal in that direction only proved that I, filled with apprehension, anticipated Germany's collapse and that I only made such a proposal out of cowardice, or from a bad conscience.

When, irrespective of all this, I have expressed my ideas on this problem, I am prepared to appear in the eyes of these people as a coward or a finished man. I can afford to run that risk, because the judgment to be passed upon me by history will not, thank God, be written by these miserable scribblers but is established by my life's work, and because I do not care very much about any judgment that may be passed upon me by these people at the time.

My prestige is sufficient for me to allow myself such an attitude, because the question of whether my following thoughts are actually dictated by fear or desperation will in any case be settled by the future course of events. Today I can only regret that those people, whose bloodthirstiness cannot have enough of war, unfortunately are not where the war is actually being fought, and never were at such places where people were shooting it out.

I can very well understand that there are interested parties who profit more from war than from peace, and I also understand that for a certain variety of international journalist it is more interesting to report on war than on peaceful activities or cultural achievements, which they are incapable of either judging or understanding. And finally it is clear to me that there is a certain Jewish international capitalism and journalism that has no feeling at all in common with the people whose interests they pretend to represent, but who, like Herostrates of old, regard incendiarism as the greatest success of their lives. But there is still another reason why I feel obliged to voice my opinion.

When reading certain international press publications, or listening to speeches of various capitalist glorifiers of war, I consider myself entitled to speak and reply in the name of those who are forced to serve as the living substance for the mental activities of these formulators of war aims, that living substance to which I myself belonged as an unknown soldier for more than four years during the Great War.

It is, perhaps, a magnificent effect when a statesman or a journalist stands up and in enthusiastic words announces the necessity of removing the regime of another country in the name of democracy or something similar. Practical execution of these glorious slogans, however, has quite a different aspect.

Newspaper articles are being written today which are sure of an enthusiastic reception by the distinguished public. Realization of demands therein contained, however, is apt to arouse much less enthusiasm; I shall not deal with the powers of judgment or the gifts of such people. Whatever they may write has no bearing on the real nature of such a struggle.

These scribblers announced before the Polish campaign that German infantry perhaps was not bad, but that tank and mechanized units in general were inferior and would be, sure to break down in action.

Now, after the defeat of Poland, the same people brazenly assert that the Polish armies have collapsed only because o German tank formations and other mechanized troops, but that, on the other hand, German infantry had deteriorated most remarkably and had got the worst of it in every clash with the Polish.

'In this fact,' so one such writer actually says, 'one has the free right to see a favorable symptom for the course of the war in the West, and the French soldier will know how to take advantage of this.'

I think so, too, provided he has read that article and can remember it later on. He will then probably box the ears of these military soothsayers. But unfortunately that will be impossible, since these people never will put their theories on inferiority of the German infantry to a personal test on the battlefields, but will merely describe these qualities from their editorial sanctums.

Six weeks - let us say fourteen days - of concentrated shellfire, and these war propagandists would soon think differently. They always are talking of the necessities of world politics, but they have no knowledge of military realities.

I do know them and for that reason I consider it my duty to speak here, even at risk of the warmonger again seeing in my speech evidence of my anxiety and symptoms of the degree of my despair.

Why should this war in the West be fought? For restoration of Poland? Poland of the Versailles Treaty will never rise again. This is guaranteed by two of the largest States in the world. Final re-organization of this territory and the question of re-establishment of the Polish State are problems which will not be solved by a war in the West but exclusively by Russia on the one hand and Germany on the other.

Furthermore, the elimination of the influence of these two Powers within the territories concerned would not produce a new State but utter chaos.

The problems awaiting solution there will never be solved either at the conference table or in editorial offices, but by the work of decades. It is not enough that a few statesmen who are not really concerned with the fate of the people affected get together and pass resolutions. It is necessary that someone who has himself a share in the life of these territories takes over the task of restoring really enduring conditions there. The ability of the Western democracies to restore such ordered conditions has at least in recent times not been proved.

The example of Palestine shows it would be better to concentrate on the tasks at hand and solve these in a reasonable manner instead of meddling with problems which lie within the vital spheres of interest of other nations and could certainly be better solved by them. At any rate, Germany has in her Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia not only established peace and order but, above all, has laid the foundation for a new economic prosperity and increasing understanding between the two nations. England still has much to accomplish before she can point to similar results in her Protectorate in Palestine.

One also realizes that it would be senseless to annihilate millions of men and to destroy property worth millions in order to reconstruct a State which at its very birth was termed an abortion by all those not of Polish extraction.

What other reason exists? Has Germany made any demands of England which might threaten the British Empire or endanger its existence? On the contrary, Germany has made no such demands on either France or England.

But if this war is really to be waged only in order to give Germany a new regime, that is to say, in order to destroy the present Reich once more and thus to create a new Treaty of Versailles, then millions of human lives will be sacrificed in vain, for neither will the German Reich go to pieces nor will a second Treaty of Versailles be made. And even should this come to pass after three, four, or even eight years of war then this second Versailles would once more become the source of fresh conflict in the future.

In any event, a settlement of the world's problems carried out without consideration of the vital interests of its most powerful nations could not possibly, after the lapse of from five to ten years, end in any other way than that attempt made twenty years ago which is now ended. No, this war in the West cannot settle any problems except perhaps the ruined finances of certain armament manufacturers, newspaper owners, or other international war profiteers.

Two problems are ripe for discussion today.

First, the settlement of the problems arising from the disintegration of Poland and, second, the problem of eliminating those international difficulties which endanger the political and economic existence of the nations.

What then are the aims of the Reich Government as regards the adjustment of conditions within the territory to the west of the German-Soviet line of demarcation which has been recognized as Germany's sphere of influence?

First, the creation of a Reich frontier which, as has already been emphasized, shall be in accordance with existing historical, ethnographical and economic conditions.

Second, the disposition of the entire living space according to the various nationalities; that is to say, the solution of the problems affecting the minorities which concern not only this area but nearly all the States in the Southwest of Europe.

Third, in this connection: An attempt to reach a solution and settlement of the Jewish problem.

Fourth, reconstruction of transport facilities and economic life in the interest of all those living in this area.

Fifth, a guarantee for the security of this entire territory and sixth, formation of a Polish State so constituted and governed as to prevent its becoming once again either a hotbed of anti-German activity or a center of intrigue against Germany and Russia.

In addition to this, an attempt must immediately be made to wipe out or at least to mitigate the ill effects of war; that is to say, the adoption of practical measures for alleviation of the terrible distress prevailing there.

These problems can, as I have already emphasized, perhaps be discussed but never solved at the conference table.

If Europe is really sincere in her desire for peace, then the States in Europe ought to be grateful that Russia and Germany are prepared to transform this hotbed into a zone of peaceful development and that these two countries will assume the responsibility and bear the burdens inevitably involved.

For the Reich this project, since it cannot be undertaken in an imperialistic spirit, is a task which will take fifty to a hundred years to perform.

Justification for this activity on Germany's part lies in the political organizing of this territory as well as in its economic development. In the long run, of course, all Europe will benefit from it. Second, and in my opinion by far the most important task, is the creation of not only a belief in, but also a sense of, European security.

For this it is necessary first that aims in the foreign policy of European States should be made perfectly clear.

As far as Germany is concerned the Reich Government is ready to give a thorough and exhaustive exposition of the aims of its foreign policy.

In so doing, they begin by stating that the Treaty of Versailles is now regarded by them as obsolete; in other words, that the government of the German Reich, and with them the whole German people, no longer see cause or reason for any further revision of the Treaty, apart from the demand for adequate colonial possessions justly due to the Reich, namely, in the first instance, for the return of German colonies.

This demand for colonies is based not only on Germany's historical claim to German colonies but above all on her elementary right to a share of the world's resources of raw materials. This demand does not take the form of an ultimatum, nor is it a demand backed by force, but a demand based on political justice and sane economic principles.

Secondly, the demand for a real revival of international economic life, coupled with an extension of trade and commerce, presupposes a reorganization of the international economic system; in other words, of production in the individual States. In order to facilitate the exchange of goods thus produced, however, markets must be organized and a final currency regulation arrived at so that the obstacles in the way of unrestricted trade can be gradually removed.


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October 7 1939

France
The transportation of the British Expeditionary Force is completed -- without loss -- under the protection of British and French naval forces. A total of about 161,000 troops, 24,000 vehicles and tanks and 140,000 tonnes of supplies have been delivered to France.

Small German forces conduct raids of the French lines. There are artillery duels between the Moselle and Saar rivers.

Hitler appoints Himmler as Commissioner for Consolidation of the German Race; his task is to eliminate "inferior" peoples from the Reich. Meanwhile, Hitler issues a decree ordering Poles to be evicted from western Poland or killed.

The US State Department announces that the United States government will continue to recognize the Polish government-in-exile, presently located at Angers in France.

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The Reich Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg)

Telegram

VERY URGENT

BERLIN, October 7, 1939.

No. 518

I am receiving reliable reports from Istanbul to the effect that Russo-Turkish negotiations might yet lead to the signing of a mutual assistance pact. Hence I request you to call on Herr Molotov immediately and to emphasize strongly once more how much we would regret it if the Soviet Government were unable to dissuade Turkey from concluding a treaty with England and France or to induce her to adopt all unequivocal neutrality. In the event that the Soviet Government itself cannot avoid concluding a mutual assistance pact with Turkey, we would regard it as a foregone conclusion that she would make a reservation in the pact whereby the pact would not obligate the Soviet Government to any kind of assistance aimed directly or indirectly against Germany. Indeed, Stalin himself promised this. Without such a reservation, the Soviet Government, as has been previously stressed, would commit an outright breach of the Non-aggression Pact concluded with Germany. It would, moreover, not suffice to make this reservation only tacitly or confidentially. On the contrary, we must insist that it be formally stipulated in such a manner that the public will notice it. Otherwise a very undesirable impression would be created on the public, and such an act would be apt to shake the confidence of the German public in the effectiveness of the new German-Russian agreements.

Please take this opportunity to inform yourself on the other details concerning the status of the Russo-Turkish negotiations and to find out what is to be agreed upon between the two Governments in regard to the question of the Straits.

Report by wire.

Reich Foreign Minister

Note: I communicated the contents of this instruction to Count Schulenburg this afternoon by telephone. The transmission was very good. Count Schulenburg said he had just come from Molotov, who had told him that he had not talked with the Turkish delegation since Sunday. Hence our warning certainly arrived in time. I replied that Count Schulenburg should nevertheless lose no time, as it was a matter of decisive importance, and the reports received here pointed to a rather advanced stage in the negotiations. Accordingly, Count Schulenburg is to call on Molotov again tomorrow morning.

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« Reply #51 on: 8 October 2009, 20:12:04 »
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October 8 1939

Virginio Gayda, Italian press spokesman, asserted Italy would continue policy of neutrality even if Britain and France rejected Hitler's offer of peace.

German and Latvian representatives sign an agreement for the patriation, to the Third Reich, of German-speaking citizens of Latvia. An estimated 50,000 ethnic Germans are involved.

The Finnish government accepts a Soviet invitation to send a delegation to Moscow to discuss border disputes. Finland also declares its determination to maintain its independence and its neutrality in the war.

Hitler formally incorporates formerly Polish territory into Germany.

The Canadian government announces that a division of 20,000 troops will leave for overseas early next year.

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Piotrkow Trybunalski is a town in central Poland, about 16 miles (26 km) south of Lodz. In 1939, there were some 18,000 Jews in Piotrkow, about one-third of the total population, with a vibrant community life.

Piotrkow was occupied by the Germans on September 5, 1939, four days after the outbreak of World War II. Anti-Jewish excesses took place at once: brutal beatings, kidnappings for forced labor, and killings. Jewish valuables and household effects were plundered in large quantities. The Germans broke into the main synagogue, famed for its beauty, robbed it of all its sacred objects, and beat and seized 29 worshipers. When Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement) came, 10 days later, nothing remained of the synagogue except the four walls. Some 2,000 Jews of Piotrkow managed to escape during the initial days of the occupation, but the number of Jews in the town swelled as refugees from neighboring towns poured in.

On October 8, 1939, the commander of Piotrkow Trybunalski, Hans Drexler, created by decree a ghetto for the Jews in this central Polish town. The Piotrkow Ghetto is the first known ghetto to have been formed in occupied Poland. However, it took until late January 1940 to force the Jews to move there. The Judenrat issued several announcements ordering Jews to make this move, but since they did not have the desired impact, the Germans eventually evicted the Jews one by one from the “Aryan” quarter, ordered them to relocate to the ghetto, and transferred their vacated dwellings to Christians. Although Christian residents of the ghetto area were also ordered to leave their homes, many Poles lived or ran businesses there until the spring of 1942. The ghetto was not fenced and its boundary was not guarded. Signs proclaiming the area a ghetto, bearing the likeness of skulls, were posted only near the ghetto boundaries and the main gate. The Jews were allowed to leave the ghetto without permits, albeit only at specified times of the day, and were allowed to spend longer periods of time on several “Aryan” streets. However, they were not allowed on the main streets. The Jewish curfew in the ghetto varied from order to order. An influx of refugees and displaced persons caused the ghetto population to swell from 10,000 at the beginning of the war to 16,500 in April 1942.


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The Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the Soviet Union (Molotov) to the German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg)

SECRET

Moscow, October 8, 1939.

MR. AMBASSADOR: I have the honor hereby to confirm that in connection with the secret supplementary protocol, concluded on September 29 [28], 1939, between the U.S.S.R. and Germany, concerning Lithuania, the following understanding exists between us:

1) The Lithuanian territory mentioned in the protocol and marked on the map attached to the protocol shall not be occupied in case forces of the Red Army should be stationed [in Lithuania];

2) It shall be left to Germany to determine the date for the implementing of the agreement concerning the cession to Germany of the above-mentioned Lithuanian territory.

Please accept, Mr. Ambassador, the expression of my highest consideration.

W. MOLOTOW

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« Reply #52 on: 11 October 2009, 20:13:48 »
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October 9 1939

Scapa Flow
Light cruiser BELFAST had departed for Scapa Flow on the 1st for Northern Patrol. On the 8th, she stopped Swedish steamer LILJEVALCH (5492grt) but allowed her to continue after inspection, and next day, stopped Norwegian steamer TAI YIN (7077grt), sending her into Kirkwall to check for contraband.

Naval
Aircraft carrier ARK ROYAL and battlecruiser RENOWN, sailing as Force K and en route to Freetown, encountered a merchant ship which identified herself as the American DELMAR. Lacking destroyers, the merchant ship could not be boarded and she was allowed to go on her way. Later intelligence revealed that the genuine DELMAR was in New Orleans and this had been German supply ship ALTMARK.

German pocket battleship DEUTSCHLAND stopped American steamer CITY OF FLINT (4963grt) in the North Atlantic off the Newfoundland Banks. Captured British crew from steamer SOUTHGATE were put aboard, and disguised as Danish steamer ALF, she sailed towards Murmansk, arriving at Tromso on the 20th and the British crew put ashore. She continued on to Kola Bay where she arrived on the 22nd.

Shortly after sending off TAI YIN, BELFAST sighted another steamer which proved to be German liner CAP NORTE (13,615grt) carrying German reservists from South America. She was captured 50 miles NW of the Faroes in 63N, 10W and light cruiser CALYPSO, also on Northern Patrol in the area, arrived to assist. CAP NORTE was sent off towards Kirkwall under a prize crew consisting of Lt Cdr A G L Seale in command, Gunner (T) D E Wright and twenty ratings, and at 0730/10th, was turned over to light cruiser DELHI. They were joined off the Orkneys by armed boarding vessel NORTHERN ROVER (655grt) and CAP NORTE, DELHI, and NORTHERN ROVER reached Kirkwall on the 12th. CAP NORTE was renamed EMPIRE TROOPER for British use as a troopship. After dealing with her, BELFAST, her prize crews depleted, returned to Scapa Flow, arriving at 1500/13th.

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The German Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Schulenburg) to the German Foreign Office

Telegram

VERY URGENT
MOSCOW, October 9, 1939-12:30 a. m.
Received October 9, 1939-3 a. m.

No. 493 of October 8

Reference your telegram of the 7th No. 518.

Molotov stated this evening at 9 p. m. that since October 1 no meeting had [taken place] with the Turkish Foreign Minister and that the outcome of the negotiations cannot as yet be surmised. Molotov expressed the view that in all likelihood a mutual assistance pact with Turkey would not be concluded. But under any circumstances the interests of Germany and the special nature of German-Soviet relations would be upheld. Molotov explained that the Soviet Government was pursuing the aim of inducing Turkey to adopt full neutrality and to close the Dardanelles, as well as to aid in maintaining peace in the Balkans.

SCHULENBURG


Berlin
Hitler issues Directive No. 6. Its message is simple: "Should it become evident in the near future that England and, under her influence, France also, are not disposed to bring the war to an end, I have decided, without further loss of time to go over to the offensive." The offensive is to be directed across the Low Countries and is intended to defeat strong sections of the French and British armies when these arrive to help the Dutch and the Belgians. The ground taken is to provide protection for the Ruhr and to give bases for the air war against Britain. The aims of the plan are, therefore, limited when compared with the Schlieffen Plan of 1914 or with the scheme which is actually adopted in May 1940. There is no mention of completely defeating France. This order is a further blow to the autonomy of the German army. Their view is that, although it lies within Hitler's authority as head of state and Commander in Chief of the Wehrmacht to order an attack to be prepared as soon as possible, the army should be asked where and how this attack should take place. Even Keitel argues against Hitler on this issue.
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« Reply #53 on: 11 October 2009, 20:30:06 »
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October 10 1939

Berlin
Admiral Raeder mentions to Hitler for the first time the possibility of invading Norway to secure naval and especially submarine bases (see December 8, 1939 and January 27, 1940). Churchill is, at this time, arguing in the British Cabinet that Norwegian coastal waters should be mined to interfere with German iron-ore traffic.

German patrols are reportedly active and artillery exchanges take place near the French border.

Paris
The French Prime Minister, Edouard Daladier, formally rejects the German peace proposals, made by Adolf Hitler on October 9th, in a national radio broadcast. He states that France will continue to fight for a definite guarantee of security in Europe.

The Finns call up their reserves and begin the evacuation of some frontier districts, including Helsinki and Viborg.
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The German Minister in Finland to the German Foreign Office
Telegram

VERY URGENT
HELSINKI, October 10, 1939-9:30 p. m.
Received October 10, 1939-12 midnight.

No. 287 of October 10

All indications are that if Russia will not confine its demands to islands in the Gulf of Finland, Finland will offer armed resistance. The consequences for our war economy would be grave. Not only food and timber exports, but also indispensable copper and molybdenum exports from Finland to Germany would cease. For this reason I suggest you intercede with Russian Government in the sense that it should not go beyond a demand for the islands.

BLüCHER


A Soviet-Lithuanian Pact is signed in Moscow, giving the USSR the use of bases in Lithuania. Vilna is restored to Lithuania from which it was annexed by Poland in 1922. This pact is the last in a series designed to ensure Soviet control of the Baltic.
The Soviet Union announces it will transfer Vilna and its environs to neutral Lithuania in about two weeks (Lithuania had claimed the region after World War I). About 15,000 Jewish refugees flee Soviet- or German-occupied Poland to Vilna in anticipation of the transfer. The Soviets hand over the city to Lithuania on October 28, 1939.

The Estonian government resigns. Uluots is appointed the new Prime Minister and Piip becomes the new Foreign Minister.

British recruitment into the Women's Land Army is suspended after 25,000 have enrolled.
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« Reply #54 on: 12 October 2009, 20:15:15 »
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October 11 1939

AFL opposes U.S. involvement in WWII
On October 11, 1939, the American Federation of Labor (AFL) declared its opposition to U.S. involvement in World War II. Far from a radical response to America's potential engagement in the war, the AFL's stance was in line with majority opinion. At the time, President Roosevelt was a major proponent of keeping U.S. troops at home. The AFL was not, however, an entirely passive observer of the war. At the same time that they announced their opposition to U.S. involvement, the union also chose to begin a boycott of German, Japanese and Russian goods.

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On October 11, 1939, Alexander Sachs, Wall Street economist and longtime friend and unofficial advisor to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, met with the President to discuss a letter written by Albert Einstein the previous August.  Einstein had written to inform Roosevelt that recent research on fission chain reactions utilizing uranium made it probable that large amounts of power could be produced by a chain reaction and that, by harnessing this power, the construction of "extremely powerful bombs" was conceivable.  Einstein believed the German government wasExcerpt from the comic book "Adventures Inside the Atom." Click on this image or visit the "Library" to view the whole comic book. actively supporting research in this area and urged the United States government to do likewise.  Sachs read from a cover letter he had prepared and briefed Roosevelt on the main points contained in Einstein's letter.  Initially the President was noncommittal and expressed concern over locating the necessary funds, but at a second meeting over breakfast the next morning Roosevelt became convinced of the value of exploring atomic energy.

Einstein drafted his famous letter with the help of the Hungarian  émigré physicist Leo Szilard, one of a number of European scientists who had fled to the United States in the 1930s to escape Nazi and Fascist repression.  Szilard was among theAlbert Einstein and Leo Szilard most vocal of those advocating a program to develop bombs based on recent findings in nuclear physics and chemistry.  Those like Szilard and fellow Hungarian refugee physicists Edward Teller and Eugene Wigner regarded it as their responsibility to alert Americans to the possibility that German scientists might win the race to build an atomic bomb and to warn that Hitler would be more than willing to resort to such a weapon.  But Roosevelt, preoccupied with events in Europe, took over two months to meet with Sachs after receiving Einstein's letter.  Szilard and his colleagues interpreted Roosevelt's inaction as unwelcome evidence that the President did not take the threat of nuclear warfare seriously.

Roosevelt wrote Einstein back on October 19, 1939, informing the physicist that he had set up a  committee consisting of civilian and military representatives to study uranium.  Events proved that the President was a man of considerable action once he had chosen a direction.  In fact, Roosevelt's approval of uranium research in October 1939, based on his belief that the United States could not take the risk of allowing Hitler to achieve unilateral possession of "extremely powerful bombs," was merely the first decision among many that ultimately led to the establishment of the Manhattan Project.


Australian Prime Minister Menzies announces the Empire Air Training Scheme, to train aircrew for operations in Europe

Fearing war between the USSR and Finland, President Roosevelt appeals to Soviet President Mikhail I Kalinin for restraint and to "make no demands on Finland which are inconsistent with the maintenance and development of amicable and peaceful relations between the two countries, and the independence of each."

In large Finnish towns, machineguns and anti-aircraft guns are being mounted preparing for a defence against the invader.

Roosevelt orders American scientists to investigate the feasibility of building an "atomic bomb."

The British War Office moves to increase weekly production of mustard gas from 310 to 1200 tons. Britain now has 158,000 troops deployed in France, according to the British Secretary of War, Leslie Hore-Belisha. Meanwhile, in a by-election at Clackmannan and East Stirling, a pacifist candidate draws 1060 votes.

In Germany a false radio report stating that the British government has fallen and an armistice has been declared leads to open rejoicing.

Polish government-in-exile foreign minister, August Zaleski, consults with the British prime minister and Lord Halifax. Meanwhile, a commercial agreement is signed by the British and Soviet governments by which timber will be imported in exchange for rubber and Cornish tin.
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« Reply #55 on: 12 October 2009, 20:30:56 »
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October 12 1939

The deportation of Jews from occupied Austria and Czechoslovakia to occupied Poland begins under the direction of an SS administration headed by Eichmann.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reinhard_Heydrich)

Soviet and Finnish representatives meet to discuss border revisions. The Soviets want the cession of some territory near Leningrad, control of the islands in the Gulf of Finland, use of the port of Hanko and other rearrangements of the border in the far north near Murmansk. In return they offer rather more land than they demanded in the Suomussalmi area. The Finns only feel able to offer a much smaller range of concessions.

Chamberlain officially rejects the call for a European conference, to meet and resolve differences with Germany, made by Hitler on October 6. He says that to consider such terms would be to forgive Germany for all aggressions and he warns that German must choose between permanent security arrangements in Europe and "war to the utmost of our strength." Furthermore, he states that "past experience has shown that no reliance can be placed upon the promises of the present German goverment."

The British Expeditionary Force is now fully deployed along the Franco-Belgian border, between Maulde and Halluin.

Quote
House of Commons:
BRITISH REPLY TO GERMAN PROPOSALS

HC Deb 12 October 1939 vol 352 cc563-603  563

§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House do now adjourn."http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1939/oct/12/british-reply-to-german-proposals#S5CV0352P0_19391012_HOC_279


At 18.08 hours on 12 Oct, 1939, the Emile Miguet, a romper of convoy KJ-2 since 6 October, was shelled and stopped by U-48 190 miles southwest of Fastnet. At 18.20 hours, the U-boat fired a coup de grâce at the abandoned tanker which caught fire after being hit. The burned out wreck was scuttled by HMS Imogen (D 44) (Cdr E.B.K. Stevens, RN) the next day. The survivors were picked up by the American steam merchant Black Hawk.
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« Reply #56 on: 13 October 2009, 19:49:47 »
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October 13 1939

USA
In a radio broadcast, Colonel Charles Lindbergh questions the right of Canada "to draw this hemisphere into a European war because they prefer the Crown of England to American independence." He appears to meet charges that he is pro-German by calling for both Nazi and Communist influence in America to be "stamped out." He also says that British and French colonies in the Caribbean should be handed over to the US to pay war debts.

Soviet and Finnish representatives continue to meet to discuss border revisions.

The King of Sweden invites the sovereigns of Denmark and Norway and the president of Finland to a conference.

French-German border
Skirmishes are reported east of the Moselle River. French forces demolish three bridges over the Rhine River.

Britain
In Bletchley, three people die when two express trains collide in the blackout.

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October 13, 1939 & August 4, 1940

In May 1927, a shy, handsome young man from Michigan named Charles Lindbergh suddenly became the idol of millions when he landed his small airplane in Paris after a grueling 33-hour flight from New York - the first person to fly alone,nonstop, across the Atlantic ocean.

Twelve years leater, this politically astute son of a United States Congressman resolved to speak out against President Franklin Roosevelt's illegal campaign to push the United States into the European war that had broken out in September 1939.

The Most important national peace organization of this period was the America First Committee. Founded in July 1940, the broad-based citizens' coalition quickly grew to a membership of some 800,000. For his work as the Committee's most prominent and articulate spokesman, Lindbergh was both widely praised and bitterly denounced.

In a series of persuasive and widely-noted speeches, Lindbergh gave voice to the thoughts and feelings of the great majority of Americans who wanted to keep their country out of war.

Published here are the complete texts of two of these historical addresses: Lindbergh's speech of October 13, 1939, "Neutrality and War," and his speech of August 4, 1940, "Our Relationship with Europe." Each address was broadcast to the nation over the Mutual radio network.

Neutrality and War

Tonight, I speak again to the people of this country who are opposed to the United States entering the war which is now going on in Europe. We are faced with the need of deciding on a policy of American neutrality. The future of our nation and of our civilization rests upon the wisdom and foresight we use. Much as peace is to be desired, we should realize that behind a successful policy of neutrality must stand a policy of war. It is essential to define clearly those principles and circumstances for which a nation will fight. Let us give no one the impression that America's love for peace means that she is afraid of war, of that we are not fully capable and willing to defend all that is vital to us. National life and influence depend upon national strength, both in character and in arms. A neutrality built on pacifism alone will eventually fail.

Before we can intellignetly enact regulations for the control of our armaments, our credit, and our ships, we must draw a sharp dividing line between neutrality and war; there must be no gradual encorachment on the defenses of our nation. Up to this line we may adjust our affairs to gain the advantages of peace, but beyond it must lie all the armed might of America, coiled in readiness to spring if once this bond is cut. Let us make clear to all countries where this line lies. It must be both within our intent and our capabilities. There must be no question of trading or bluff in this hemisphere. Let us give no promises we cannot keep make no meaningless assurances to an Ethiopia, a Czechoslovakia, or a Poland. The policy we decide upon should be as clear cut as our shorelines, and as easily defended as our continent.

This western hemisphere is our domain. It is our right to trade freely within it. From Alaska to Labrador, from the Hawaiian Islands to Bermuda, from Canada to South America, we must allow no invading army to set foot. These are the outposts of the United States. They form the essential outline of our geographical defense. We must be ready to wage war with all the resources of our nation if they are ever seriously threatened. Their defense is the mission of our army, our navy, and our air corps the minimum requirement of our military strength. Around these places should lie our line between neutrality and war. Let there be no compromise about our right to defend or trade within this area. If it is challenged by any nation, the answer must be war. Our policy of neutrality should have this as its foundation.

We must protect our sister American nations from foreign invasion, both for their welfare and our own. But, in turn, they have a duty to us. They should not place us in the position of having to defend them in America while they engage in wars abroad. Can we rightfully permit any country in America to give bases to foreign warships, or to send its army abroad to fight while it remains secure in our protection at home? We desire the utmost friendship with the people of Canada. If their country is ever attacked, our Navy will be defending their seas, our soldiers will fight on their battlefields, our fliers will die in their skies. But have they the right to draw this hemisphere into a European war simply because they prefer the Crown of England to American independence?

Sooner or later we must demand the freedom of this continent and its surrounding islands from the dictates of European power. American history clearly indicates this need. As long as European powers maintain their influence in our hemisphere, we are likely to find ourselves involved in their troubles. And they will loose no opportunity to involve us.

Our congress is now assembled to decide upon thebest policy for this country to maintain during the war which is going on in Europe. The legislation under discussion involves three major issues - the embargo of arms, the restriction of shipping, and the allowance of credit. The action we take in regard to these issues will be an important indication to ourselves, and to the nations of Europe, whether or not we are likely to enter the conflict eventually as we did in the last war. The entire world is watching us. The action we take in America may either stop or precipitate this war.

Let us take up these issues, one at a time, and examine them. First, the embargo of arms: It is argued that the repeal of this embargo would assist democracy in Europe, that it would let us make a profit for ourselves from the sale of munitions abroad, and, at the same time, help to build up our own arms industry.

I do not believe that repealing the armsembargo would assist democracy in Europe - because I do not believe this is a war for democracy. This is a war over the balance of power in Europe a war brought about by the desire for strength on the part of Germany and the fear of strength on the part of England and France. The munitions the armies obtain, the longer the war goes on, and the more devastated Europe becomes, the less hope there is for democracy. That is a lesson we should have learned from participation in the last war. If democratic principles had been applied in Europe after that war, if the "democracies" of Europe had been willing to make some sacrifice to help democracy in Europe while it was fighting for its life, if England and France had offered a hand to the struggling republic of Germany, there would be no war today.

If we repeal the arms embargo with the idea of assisting one of the warring sides to overcome the other, then why mislead ourselves by talk of neutrality? Those who advance this argument should admit openly that repeal is a step toward war. The next step would the extension of credit, and the next step would be the sending of American troops.

To those who argue that we could make a profit and build up our own industry by selling munitions abroad, I reply that we in America have not yet reached a point where we wish to capitilize on the destruction and death of war. I do not believe that the material welfare of this country need, or that our spiritual welfare could withstand, such a policy. If our industry depends upon a commerce of arms for its strength, then our industrial system should be changed.

It is impossible for me to understand how America can contribute civilization and humanity by sending offensive instruments of destruction to European battlefields. This would not only implicate us in the war, but it would make us partly responsible for its devastation. The fallacy of helping to defend a political ideology, even though it be somewhat similar to our own, was clearly demonstrated to us in the last war. Through our help that war was won, but neither the democracy nor the justice for which we fought grew in the peace that followed our victory.

Our bond with Europe is a bond of race and not of political ideology. We had to fight a European army to establish democracy in this country. It is the European race we must preserve; political progress will follow. Racial strength is vital politics, a luxury. If the white race is ever seriously threatened, it may then be time for us to take our part in its protection, to fight side by side with the English, French, and Germans, but not with one against the other for our mutual destruction.

Let us not dissipate our strength, or help Europe to dissipate hers, in these wars of politics and possession. For the benefit of western civilization, we should continue our embargo on offensive armaments. As far as purely defensive arms are concerned, I, for one, am in favor of supplying European countries with as much as we can spare of the material that falls within this category. There are technicians who will argue that offensive and defensive arms cannot be separated completely. That is true, but it is no more difficult to make a list of defensive weapons than it is to separate munitions of war from semi-manufactured articles, and we are faced with that problem today. No one says that we should sell opium because it is difficult to make a list of narcotics. I would as soon seeour country traffic in opium as in bombs. There are certain borderline cases, but there are plenty of clear cut examples: for instance, the bombing plane and the anti-aircraft cannon. I do not want to see American bombers dropping bombs which will kill and mutilate European children, even if they are not flown by American pilots. But I am perfectly willing to see American anti-aircraft guns shooting American shells at invading bombers over any European country. And I believe that most of you who are listening tonight will agree with me.

The second major issue for which we must create apolicy concerns the restrictions to be placed on our shipping. Naval blockades have long been accepted as an element of warfare. They began on the surface of the sea, followed the submarine beneath it, and now reach up into the sky with aircraft. The laws and customs which wrre developed during the surface era were not satisfactory to the submarine. Now, aircraft bring up new and unknown factors for consideration. It is simple enough for a battleship to identify the merchantman she captures. It is a more difficult problem for a submarine if that merchantman may carry cannon; it is safer to fire a torpedo than to come up and ask. For bombing planes flying at high altitudes and through conditions of poor visibility, identification of a surface vessel will be more difficult still.

In modern naval blockades and warfare, torpedoes will be fired and bombs dropped on probabilities rather than on certainties of identification. The only safe course for neutral shipping at this time is to stay away from the warring countries and dangerous waters of Europe.

The third issue to be decided relates to the extensionof credit. Here again we may draw from our experience in the last war. After that war was over, we found ourselves in the position of having financed a large portion of European countries. And when the time came to pay us back, these countries simply refused to do so. They not only refused to pay the wartime loans we made, but they refused to pay back what we loaned them after the war was over. As is so frequently the case, we found that loaning money eventually created animosity instead of gratitude. European countries felt insulted when we asked to be repaid. They called us "Uncle Shylock." They were horror struck at the idea of turning over to us any of their islands in America to compensate for their debts, or for our help in winning their war. They seized all the German colonies and carved up Europe to suit their fancy. These were the "fruits of war." They took our money and they took our soldiers. But there was not the offer of one Caribbean island in return for the debts they "could not afford to pay."

The extension of Credit to a belligerent country is a long step toward war, and it would leave us close to the edge. If American industry loans money to a beligerent country, many interests will feel that it is more important for that country to win than for our own to avoid the war. It is unfortunate but true that there are interests in America who would rather lose American lives than their own dollars. We should give them no opportunity.

I believe that we should adopt as our program of American neutrality - as our contribution to western civilization - the following policy:

   1. An embargo on offensive weapons and munitions.
   2. The unrestricted sale of purely defensive armaments.
   3. The prohibition of American shipping from the belligerent countries of Europe and their danger zones.
   4. The refusal of credit to belligerent nations ortheir agents.

Whether or not this program is adopted depends uponthe support of those of us who believe in it. The United States of America is a democracy. The policy of our country is still controlled by our people. It is time for us to take action. There has never been a greater test for the democratic principle of government.

Our Relationship with Europe

Several weeks have passed since I received the honor of your invitation to speak in Chicago. At that time it was essential to create strong and immediate opposition to the trend toward war which was taking place in this country. The agitation for our entry in the war was increasing with alarming rapidity. Hysteria had mounted to the point where anti-parachute corps were being formed to defend American cities against air attacks from Europe. Greenland, with its Arctic climate, its mountainous terrain, and its ice-filled seas was called an easy stepping-stone for German bombing planes invading America. Cartoons showed the Atlantic Ocean reduced to the width of the English Channel. American safety was said to depend upon the success of European armies. Foreign propaganda was in full swing, and it seemed in many ways that we were approaching the greatest crisis in the history of our country.

But events move swiftly in this modern world, and the true character of a nation lies beneath such surface foam. When the danger of foreign war was fully realized by our people, the underlying tradition of American independence arose, and in recent weeks its voice has thundered through the weaker cries for war.

We have by no means escaped the foreign entanglements and favoritisms that Washington warned us against when he passed the guidance of our nation's destiny to the hands of future generations. We have participated deeply in the intrigues of Europe, and not always in an open "democratic" way. There are still interests in this country and abroad who will do their utmost to draw us into the war. Against these interests we must be continuously on guard. But American opinion is now definitely and overwhelmingly against our involvement. Both political parties have declared against our entry into the war. People are beginning to realize that the problems of Europe cannot be solved by the interference of America. We have at last started to build and to plan for the defense of our own continent. By these acts, our eyes are turned once more in the direction of security and peace, for if our own military forces are strong, no foreign nation can invade us, and, if we do not interfere with their affairs, none will desire to.

Since we have decided against entering the war in Europe, it is time for us to consider the relationship we will have with Europe after this war is over. It is only by using the utmost intelligence in establishing and maintaining this relationship that we can keep America out of war in the future.

I have a different outlook toward Europe than most people in America. In consequence, I am advised to speak guardedly on the subject of the war. I am told that one must not stand too strongly against the trend of the times, and that, to be effective, what one says must meet with general approval.

There is much to be said for this argument, yet, right or wrong, it is contrary to the values that I hold highest in life.I prefer to say what I believe, or not to speak at all. I would far rather have your respect for the sincerity of what I say, than attempt to win your applause by confining my discussion to popular concepts. Therefore, I speak to you today as I would speak to close friends rather than as one is supposed to address a large audience.

I do not offer my opinion as an expert, but rather as a citizen who is alarmed at the position our country has reached in this era of experts. As laymen we are often told that the solution of difficult problems should be left to the specialist. But since specialists differ in the solutions they recommend, they must at least allow us the privilege of choosing those we wish to follow. And in making this choice, it seems that we are back where we started and must form an opinion of our own.

I found conditions in Europe to be verydifferent from our concept of them here in the United States. Anyone who takes the trouble to read through back issues of our newspapers cannot fail to realize what a false impression we had of the belligerent nations. We were told that Germany was ripe for revolution, that her rearmament was a bluff, that she lacked officers, that she flew her airplanes from one field to another so they would be counted again and again by foreign observers. We were informed that Russia had the most powerful air fleet in the world, that the French army was superior to any in Europe, that the British navy was more than a match for the German air force, that Germany lacked enough food, fuel, and raw material to wage war, that the Maginot Line was impregnable, that Italy would never enter a war against England. Statements of this sort have issued forth in an endless stream from Europe, and anyone who questioned their accuracy was called a Nazi agent.

These examples show how greatly we have been misled about the military conditions in Europe. If one goes still farther back, he will find that we have also been misled about political conditions. It has seemed obvious to me for many years that the situation in Europe would have to change, either by agreement or by war. I hoped that we had reached a degree of civilization where change might come by agreement. Living in Europe made me fear that it would come only through war.

There is a probverb in China which says that "when the rich become too rich, and the poor too poor, something happens." This applies to nations as well as to men. When I saw the wealth of the British Empire, I felt that the rich had become too rich. When I saw the poverty of Central Europe, I felt that the poor had become too poor. That something would happen was blazoned even on the skies of Europe by mounting thousands of fighting aircraft.

From 1936 to 1939, as I travelled through European countries, I saw the phenomomenal military strength of Germany growing like a giant at the side of an aged, and complacent England. France was awake to her danger, but far too occupied with personal ambitions, industrial troubles, and internal politics to make more than a feeble effort to rearm. In England there was organization without spirit. In France there was spirit without organization. In Germany there were both.

I realized that I was witnessing a clash between the heirs of another war. A generation had passed since the Treaty of Versailles. The sons of victory and the sons of defeat were about to meet on the battlefields of their fathers. As I travelled first among those who had won, and then among those who had lost, the words of a French philosopher kept running through my mind: "Man thrives on adversity."

The underlying issue was clear. It was not the support of "democracy," or the so-called democratic nations would have given more assistance to the struggling republic of post-war Germany. It was not a crusade for Christianity, or the Christian nations of the west would have carried their battle flags to the confiscated churches of Russia. It was not the preservation of small and helpless nations, or sanctions would have been followed by troops in Abyssinia, and England would not have refused to cooperate with the United States in Manchuria. The issue was one of the oldest and best known among men. It concerned the division of territory and wealth between nations. It has caused conflict in Europe since European history began.

The longer I lived in Europe, the more I felt that no outside influence could solve the problems of European nations, or bring them lasting peace. They must work out their destiny, as we must work out ours. I am convinced that the better acquainted we in America become with the background of European conflicts, the less we will desire to take part in them. But here I would like to make this point clear: while I advocate the non-interference by America in the internal affairs of Europe, I believe it is of the utmost importance for us to cooperate with Europe in our relationships with the other peoples of the earth. It is only by cooperation that we can maintain the supremacy of our western civilization and the right of our commerce to proceed unmolested throughout the world. Neither they nor we are strong enough to police the earth against the opposition of the other.

In the past, we have dealt with a Europe dominated by England and France. In the future we may have to deal with a Europe dominated by Germany. But whether England or Germany wins this war, Western civilization will still depend upon two great centers, one in each hemisphere. With all the aids of modern science, neither of these centers is in a position to attack the other successfully as long as the defenses of both are reasonably strong. A war between us could easily last for generations, and bring all civilization tumbling down, as has happened more than once before. An agreement between us could maintain civilization and peace throughout the world as far into the future as we can see.

But we are often told that if Germany wins this war, cooperation will be impossible, and treaties no more than scraps of paper. I reply that cooperation is never impossible when there is sufficient gain on both sides, and that treaties are seldom torn apart when they do not cover a weak nation. I would be among the last to advocate depending upon treaties for our national safety. I believe that we should rearm fully for the defense of America, and that we should never make the type of treaty that would lay us open to invasion if it were broken. But if we refuse to consider treaties with the dominant nation of Europe, regardless of who that may be, we remove all possiblity of peace.

Nothing is to be gained by shouting names and pointing the finger of blame across the ocean. Our grandstand advice to England, and our criticism of her campaigns, have been neither wanted nor helpful. Our accusations of aggression and barbarism on the part of Germany, simply bring back echoes of hypocrisy and Versailles. Our hasty condemnation of a French government, struggling desperately to save a defeated nation from complete collapse, can do nothing but add to famine, hatred, and chaos.

If we desire to keep America out of war, we must take the lead in offering a plan for peace. That plan should be based upon the welfare of America. It should be backed by an impregnable system of defense. It should incorporate terms of mutual advantage. But it should not involve the internal affairs of Europe; they never were, and never will be, carried on according to our desires.

Let us offer Europe a plan for the progress and protection of the western civilization of which they and we each form a part. But whatever their reply may be, let us carry on the American destiny of which our forefathers dreamed as they cut their farm lands from the virgin forests. What would they think of the claim that our frontiers lie in Europe? Let us guard the independence that the soldiers of our Revolution won against overwhelming odds. What, I ask you, would those soldiers say if they could hear this nation, grown a hundred and thirty million strong, being told that only the British fleet protects us from invasion?

Our nation was born of courage and hardship. It grew on the fearless spirit of the pioneer. Now that it has become one of the greatest powers on earth, ours must not be the generation that kneels in fear of future hardships, or of invasion by a Europe already torn by war.

I do not believe we will ever accept a philosophy of calamity, weakness, and fear. I have faith in an American army, an American navy, an American air force and, most important of all, the American character, which in normal times, lies quietly beneath the surface of this nation.


About 08.30 hours on 13 Oct, 1939, the Stonepool, dispersed from convoy OB-17, was damaged by gunfire from U-42 (Dau) south of Bantry Bay in position 48°40N/15°30W. The ship was en route from Barry to St. Vincent loaded with 6600 tons of coal and general cargo. After ten minutes, the U-boat was forced to dive by the accurate returned fire, leaving the deck gun crew in the water. While the Germans surfaced again to pick up their men, the steamer sent distress signals which brought HMS Ilex (D 61) (LtCdr P.L. Saumarez, RN) and HMS Imogen (D 44) (Cdr E.B.K. Stevens, RN) to the scene. At 18.55 hours, the steamer spotted the U-boat on the surface, which was shortly thereafter sunk by the destroyers.
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« Reply #57 on: 15 October 2009, 19:05:31 »
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October 14 1939

At 0116 hours on 14 October 1939 the German submarine U-47 fired a spread of three torpedoes at HMS Royal Oak and the British seaplane tender HMS Pegasus lying at anchor in the harbour of Scapa Flow, turned around and fired a stern torpedo at 0121 hours. Captain (Kapitanleutnant) Günther Prien misidentified the seaplane tender as HMS Repulse and claimed a hit, but a torpedo apparently hit the starboard anchor chain of the battleship and did not damage the ships. At 0123 hours, the U-boat fired a second spread of three torpedoes that hit HMS Royal Oak (Capt. William Gordon Benn, RN) on the starboard side and caused a magazine to blew up. The battleship rolled over and sank in 19 minutes in position 58º55'N, 02º59'W. The ship complement was 1208 officers and men, 833 of them were killed and there were 375 survivors.

RESON SeaBat 8125 - HMS Royal Oak


Why the Royal Oak was sunk


HMS Royal Oak


Japanese air base at Hankow bombed by Chinese planes.

Polish submarine Orzel reaches British waters after a daring escape from the Baltic Sea. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ORP_Orze%C5%82)(http://www.dutchsubmarines.com/export/export_orzel.htm)

General Gamelin, French Commander-in-Chief, issues an Order of the Day predicting a massive German offensive "at any moment."(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Gamelin)

Soviet and Finnish representatives conclude the talks to discuss border revisions. There is little change in the terms offered by either side. Finnish counterproposals for a land exchange on their mutual border are refused by the Soviet negotiators.

Senator Key Pittman of Nevada, chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee, and the New York Herald Tribune, as well as many Canadians, protest the comments made by Charles Lindbergh in a radio broadcast last night.

The escaped Polish Intelligence team resumes code-breaking operations with their highly secret replicas of the German "Enigma" machine in France.
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« Reply #58 on: 17 October 2009, 09:13:19 »
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October 15 1939

Naval

British Admiral Forbes departed Loch Ewe with battleships NELSON & RODNEY, battlecruiser HOOD, aircraft carrier FURIOUS, light cruisers BELFAST & AURORA and destroyers BEDOUIN, FEARLESS, FOXHOUND and FURY.


Battlecruiser Hood

Quote
Loch Ewe is located in the north west Highlands of Scotland about 80 miles west of Inverness. It was of great strategic importance in World War II partly because it is north-facing (and therefore protected from the prevailing westerly winds), plus being less exposed to air attack than the existing base at Scapa Flow.  It was adopted as a gathering place for the North Atlantic Convoys destined for Russia. As well as anti-submarine boom nets, anti-submarine guard loops were laid in conjunction with the controlled mines across the mouth of the loch. Anti-aircraft guns were positioned at Aultbea, Firemore and Tournaig, and a coastal defence artillery site established at Rubha nan Sasan beyond Cove.


 
After light cruiser SOUTHAMPTON and destroyer MATABELE finished escorting steamer ST CLAIR (1637grt) from Lerwick to Aberdeen, arriving at 0945/14th, MATABELE left on the 14th and called at Scapa Flow. Destroyers MASHONA, PUNJABI, FIREDRAKE left Loch Ewe, also on the 14th, arrived at Scapa Flow later the same day, and then with MATABELE, sailed from Scapa Flow on the 15th to join Forbes at sea.

Destroyer FORESTER departed Scapa Flow on the 16th and also joined Forbes, FAME was boiler cleaning until the 22nd, and TARTAR repairing defects until the 23rd, both at Scapa Flow.

The sortie took the Fleet north of Iceland, 150 miles into the Arctic Circle, to block a reported sortie into the Atlantic by pocket battleship DEUTSCHLAND and to support the Northern Patrol. The destroyers refuelled from the capital ships on the 17th.

Battlecruiser REPULSE with destroyers JERVIS, JERSEY, COSSACK and MAORI departed Rosyth on the 18th, with COSSACK and MAORI arriving back on the 19th and REPULSE, JERVIS and JERSEY joining Forbes at sea on the 20th. The two destroyers were detached for refuelling at Sullom Voe on the 21st and afterwards carried out an anti-submarine patrol off Muckle Flugga. They then left the patrol area to search off the Norwegian coast for American steamer CITY OF FLINT.

JERVIS and JERSEY arrived at Rosyth on the 25th without making contact.
___________________________________________________________________

U-37 sank French steamer VERMONT (5186grt) 360 miles SW of Fastnet in 48?01N, 17?22W, with the loss of two crew, the 43 survivors being rescued by destroyer INGLEFIELD. Because of the submarine activity in the area of arriving convoy KJ.2, French destroyers L’INDOMPTABLE and LE MALIN conducted a sweep, and were joined by destroyers CYCLONE and MISTRAL sailing from Brest to assist. On the 17th, CYCLONE attacked a submarine contact. On the same day, destroyer VENOMOUS left Plymouth with the survivors of VERMONT for passage to Havre.
___________________________________________________________________

Riga (Estonia)
A German-Estonian treaty is signed providing for the transfer to the Third Reich of Estonians of German ethnic origins.

The Finnish government introduces compulsory national service.

Kaunas (Lituania)
The Polish minister in protests to the Lithuanian government against the incorporation of Vilna, on the grounds that the Soviet Union has no right to dispose of this territory.

German forces are reported massing behind the lines. Reconnaissance forces are active on the whole front.

Poland
There are reports of a typhoid and cholera break out in Warsaw.
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« Reply #59 on: 17 October 2009, 09:35:01 »
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October 16 1939

Hitler's First Aerial Attack on Britian - Luftwaffe Bomb Firth of Forth

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First Air Attack on Forth Bridge

On the 16th October 1939 I was a passenger on the Dundee section of an Edinburgh to Aberdeen train which had just entered the first arch at the Southern end of the Bridge. The next stop was to be Leuchars Junction. I was in the corridor with an older boy called Jack Thomas from Edinburgh. We were looking downstream to the right of the carriage and were trying to identify some of the fleet at anchor below the bridge. Almost simultaneously there was a giant waterspout as high as the bridge alongside one of the capital ships and a barge tied up alongside; it seemed to fly up in the air! In later life I discovered it was HMS Southampton. There were two or three other explosions further off and one of the ships was actually struck; it was HMS Mohawk and casualties were sustained on board. The German bombers were in plain sight only a short distance away flying parallel to the bridge. Meanwile the train stopped briefly and as it did so the painters and riggers working scrambled from the scaffolding of the bridge and made for shelter.

The train carried on without futher incident, only by this time the RAF fighters had become involved and drove the raiders out to sea bringing dowm (I believe) three Heinkel bombers in the Forth estuary

There are two sequels to this story:-

(1) One bomber was brought down off the May Island and two crew were rescued by a trawler; they were transferred to Military Custody at Edinburgh Castle and my Uncle William Thomson was with the British Red Cross at the Castle and had to deal with the POW registrations back to Germany. He said the crew were almost certain the War would be over in a matter of weeks.

(2) In 1977 I was working at Edinburgh Airport and had bought a house in South Queensferry in the shadow of the Forth Bridge. One of my neighbours was a retired bridge inspector and I shared with him our memories of that day. Only then did I learn that due to Wartime Security at that time, information regarding the casualties on HMS Mohawk, which included 15 Sailors who were killed, was not released for many years. Some of the dead are interred in the Naval section of South Queensferry Cemetery.

I hope this is of interest to you there cannot be many of us left that were actual eye witnesses to that air battle.

read more about this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/72/a1975872.shtml




Aerial picture of the Forth Bridges in 1939

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This amazing photograph was taken on 16th October 1939, the Second World War arrived in Britain by way of Scotland and more precisely Edinburgh when nine Junkers Ju-88 attacked the Rosyth Naval Dockyard, on the north shore of the Firth of Forth; it was the first attack on Britain by the Luftwaffe.

Around 2.30 p.m. the German aircraft were sighted, and Spitfires of 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron, Auxiliary Air Force, were scrambled from RAF Turnhouse (the site of modern day Edinburgh airport) to intercept the raiders. Additionally Spitfires from 602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron, based at RAF Drem located to the east of Edinburgh, in East Lothian, were on patrol at 20,000 feet.

At around 14.35 hours, the Luftwaffe bombers began their attack and were met with anti-aircraft fire. The Spitfires of 603 Squadron that had taken off from Turnhouse were the first to engage the Junkers and soon shot down one of the bombers. The Spitfires from 602 Squadron were then ordered into the attack and they shot down another. During the action the Royal Navy suffered 3 officers and 13 ratings killed and a further 44 wounded on board the light cruisers, HMS Southampton and Edinburgh, and the destroyer HMS Mohawk. There were also two people injured on the ground in Edinburgh by falling shell cases.



Quote
With Prime minister, Neville Chamberlain's declaration of War against Hitler's Germany, many people lived in fear of the British Isles being over run by German troops. But no one knew how, when or if the attack would come, so eventually life went back to relative normality. In fact it was the British who struck first when, on Monday 4th September 1939, the Royal Air Force bombed German navel bases at the entrance of Kiev canal.
Hitler and His Generals Plan Their Attack

Back in Germany, Hitler and his military advisors were planning their course of action. If a sea invasion was to be mounted the German navy would have to cross the channel encountering strong, sometimes unpredictable currents, inclement weather and attack from the RAF. So, in order to facilitate a sea crossing and amphibious landing of German troops on British beaches, the Luftwaffe would need to eliminate the threat posed by the RAF. The most effective way to do this would be by bombing grounded aircraft, aerodromes and landing strips rather than one to one aerial dog fights.

The first aerial attack on British territory occurred on 16th October 1939. At 1100 hours, 15 Junkers JU -88 of 1/KG 30 led by Hauptman Helmuth Pohle took off from Westerland. They were on route to bomb their intended target, HMS Hood, which had been sighted off the Scottish coast. The airman had instructions from Hitler not to attack the Hood if she had reached dry dock. The war was still in its early stages and at that moment civilian casualties were still hoped to be kept to a minimum.
HMS Hood, the Intended Target of the Luftwaffe

By the time the aircraft flew over the Forth Bridge, HMS Hood had reached the 'safety' of the dock, but there were other targets in view. However, the German aircraft had been spotted. Tribal Class HMS Mohawk opened fire on the Junkers. Unfortunately the aircraft had time to release 2 bombs which exploded close to the ships, killing 15 men and injuring 30 others. HMS Southampton and HMS Edinburgh also sustained minor damage.

By now the RAF, with Spitfires from 602 and 603 Squadrons, had engaged 9 of the Junkers. Pohle's aircraft sustained several hits before it crashed into the sea killing most of the crew. Pohle was the only survivor from his aircraft and spent the duration of the war as a prisoner. 602 Squadron was based at Drem airbase, their motto: Cave leonem cruciatum – Beware the tormented lion. 603 Squadron was based at Turnhouse, their motto: Gin ye daur – if you dare.



sources:
http://ww2history.suite101.com/article.cfm/hitlers_first_aerial_attack_on_british_territor
http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/72/a1975872.shtml
http://haveringhavers.blogspot.com/2007/12/forth-bridge-in-1939.html
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