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Encyclopedia > Polish September Campaign
Polish September Campaign
Part of World War II
German soldiers destroying Polish border checkpoint on 1 September. World War II begins.
German troops dismantle a Polish border checkpoint,
September 1, 1939, as World War II begins.
Date: 1 September6 October 1939
Location: Poland
Result: Decisive Axis and Soviet victory
Combatants
Poland Germany
Soviet Union
Slovakia
Commanders
Edward Rydz-Śmigły Fedor von Bock (Army Group North)
Gerd von Rundstedt (Army Group South)
Ferdinand Čatloš (Field Army Bernolak)
Strength
39 divisions
16 brigades
4,300 guns
880 tanks
400 aircraft
Total: 1,000,000[1]
56 German divisions,
33+ Soviet divisions,
3 Slovak divisions,
4 German brigades,
11+ Soviet brigades,
10,000 guns
2,700 tanks
1,300 aircraft
Total:
1,800,000 Germans,
800,000+ Soviets,
50,000 Slovaks
Casualties
66,000 dead[2]
133,700 wounded
694,000 captured
16,343 dead
27,280 wounded
320 missing
Polish September Campaign
WesterplatteDanzigKrojanty • Lasy Królewskie • Mokra • Gdańsk Bay • Pszczyna • Mława • Tuchola Forest • Jordanów • Borowa Góra • Mikołów • Węgierska Górka • Tomaszów Mazowiecki • Wizna • Łódź • Piotrków • Różan • Radom • Łomża • Wola CyrusowaWarsawGdyniaHelBzura • Jarosław • Kałuszyn • Węgrów • LwówModlin • Kobryń • Brześć • Kępa Oksywska • Tomaszów Lubelski • Wólka Węglowa • Kampinos Forest • Janów Lubelski, Wereszyca, and Hołosko • Krasnystaw • Grodno • Cześniki • Krasnobród • Władypol • SzackWytyczno • Parczew • Kock

The Polish September Campaign or the "Polish-German War of 1939" (also known in Poland as the "1939 Defensive War" (Wojna obronna 1939 roku), in Germany as the "Poland Campaign" (Polenfeldzug), and codenamed Fall Weiss ("Case White") by the German General Staff), was the World War II invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union and a small German-allied Slovak contingent. The invasion of Poland marked the start of World War II in Europe as Poland's western allies, the United Kingdom and France, declared war on Germany on September 3. The campaign began on September 1, 1939, one week after the signing of the secret Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and ended on October 6, 1939, with Germany and the Soviet Union occupying the entirety of Poland. Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... October 6 is the 279th day of the year (280th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Edward Rydz-ÅšmigÅ‚y (March 11, 1886 - December 2, 1941); nom de guerre ÅšmigÅ‚y, TarÅ‚owski, Adam Zawisza) was a Polish politician, an officer of the Polish Army, painter and poet. ... Generalfeldmarschall Fedor von Bock Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Küstrin, Germany. ... Generalfeldmarschall Gerd von Rundstedt Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Field Marshal of the German Army during World War II. He was one of Germanys more competent generals, and is remembered for remaining apolitical throughout his career. ... Westerplatte Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 1 to September 7, 1939 Place Westerplatte peninsula in Gdańsk Result ? Westerplatte is a peninsula in Gdańsk, at an estuary of the Dead Vistula (one of the Vistula delta estuaries), in the Gdańsk harbour channel. ... The Defence of the Polish Post in Danzig was one of the first battles of the Polish September Campaign, and of the Second World War. ... The Battle of Krojanty was part of the Polish September Campaign of the Second World War. ... Battle of Lasy Królewskie (Polish: Bitwa w Lasach Królewskich, Battle of Royal Forests) refers to the battle on 1 September 1939 near Janowo and KrzynowoÅ‚ga MaÅ‚a during the battle of the border of the Polish September Campaign. ... Combatants Germany Poland Commanders Georg-Hans Reinhardt, Friedrich Kirchner Julian Filipowicz Strength 2 panzer divisions, infantry division cavalry brigade, elements of one infantry division Casualties ca. ... Battle of the GdaÅ„sk Bay took place on September 1, 1939, shortly after the outbreak of the Polish Defensive War. ... Battle of Pszczyna (Polish: Bitwa PszczyÅ„ska) refers to the series of battles on 1 and 2 September 1939 near the town of Pszczyna during the Polish September Campaign. ... The Battle of MÅ‚awa, otherwise known as the Defence of the MÅ‚awa position, took place to the north of the town of MÅ‚awa in northern Poland between September 1 and September 3, 1939. ... The Battle of Bory Tucholskie refers to one of the first battles of the Polish September Campaign, 1939. ... Combatants Poland Germany Commanders StanisÅ‚aw Maczek Ewald von Kleist Strength 1 motorized brigade reinforced with infantry 2 Panzer divisions, 1 infantry division Casualties {{{notes}}} The Battle of Jordanów took place on September 2, 1939, during the Polish Defensive War and the opening stages of World War II. It... Battle of Borowa Góra (Polish: ) refers to the series of battles from 2nd to 5th of September of 1939 that took place near the hills of Góry Borowskie, south west from Piotrków Trybunalski and east of BeÅ‚chatów. ... Battle of Tomaszów Mazowiecki (Polish: Bitwa pod Tomaszowem Mazowieckim) refers to the battle on 6 September 1939 near the town of Tomaszów Mazowiecki, Second Polish Republic, during the Polish September Campaign. ... Battle of Wizna Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 7-September 10, 1939 Place Wizna near Poland Result unconcluded Battle of Wizna (sometimes referred to as the Polish Thermopylae) was fought between September 6 and September 10, 1939, between the forces of Poland and Germany during the initial... The Battle of Łódź was fought on September 8, 1939, between Poland and Germany. ... The Battle of Różan, otherwise known as defence of Różan bridgehead, took place between September 4 and September 6, 1939, in the fields before the town of Różan on the Narew River. ... Battle of Radom. ... Combatants Germany Poland The Battle of Wola Cyrusowa took place on September 8, 1939 near the village of Wola Cyrusowa near Stryków in Poland. ... Battle of Warsaw Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date 8 to September 28, 1939 Place Warsaw, Poland Result Polish defeat The 1939 Battle of Warsaw was fought between the Polish Warsaw Army (Armia Warszawa) garrisoned and entrenched in the capital of Poland (Warsaw) and the German Army. ... German battleship Schleswig-Holstein stationed at Danzig harbor is shelling nearby Polish positions at Gdynia. ... Hel Peninsula as seen from Landsat satellite in 2000 Battle of Hel was one of the longest battles of the Polish Defence War of 1939 in 1939. ... Battle of Bzura (also known as Battle of Kutno) took place during the Second World War, Polish September Campaign between 9 September 1939 and 19 September1, 1939 and was fought between Polish and German Nazi forces. ... The Battle of KaÅ‚uszyn, took place between September 11 and September 12, 1939, in the fields before the town of KaÅ‚uszyn near MiÅ„sk Mazowiecki. ... Combatants Germany, Soviet Union Poland Commanders Ferdinand Schörner, Filip Golikov WÅ‚adysÅ‚aw Langner, StanisÅ‚aw Sikorski Casualties unknown unknown The Battle of Lwów (sometimes called the Siege of Lwów) was a battle for the control over the Polish city of Lwów between the Polish Army... Battle of Modlin Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 13 to September 29, 1939 Place Modlin village, Modlin Fortress Result Polish capitulation During the Polish September Campaign at the beginning of the Second World War, Modlin Fortress was a headquarters of the Modlin Army until it retreated eastwards. ... Battle of KobryÅ„ was one of the battles of the Polish Defence War of 1939. ... Battle of Brześć Litewski (otherwise known as the Siege of Brześć, Battle of Brest-Litovsk or simply Battle of Brześć) was a World War II battle that took place between September 14 and September 17, 1939, near the town of Brześć Litewski (now Brest, Belarus). ... The battle of KÄ™pa Oksywska took place in the Oksywie Heights outside of the city of Gdynia between September 10 and September 19, 1939. ... Battle of Tomaszów Lubelski took place from 17th September to 26th September 1939 near the town of Tomaszów Lubelski. ... Battle of Wólka WÄ™glowa (Polish: ) refers to the battle on September 19, 1939, that took place near Wólka WÄ™glowa, during the last stages of the Polish counteroffensive (battle of the Bzura) of the Polish September Campaign. ... The Battle of Kampinos was in fact a series of skirmishes and battles fought in the forests around Kampinos during the Polish Defensive War of 1939, between the Polish Army and the German Wehrmacht. ... The Battle of Grodno took place between September 21 and September 24, 1939, during the Polish Defensive War. ... The Battle of Krasnobród took place on September 23, 1939 near the town of Krasnobród. ... Battle of Szack Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 28, 1939 Place Szack, Poland Result Polish victory Battle of Szack was one of the major battles between the Polish Army and the Red Army fought during the Polish Defence War of 1939. ... The battle of Wytyczno took place on October 1, 1939 near the village of Wytyczno near WÅ‚odawa in Poland. ... The Battle of Kock was the final battle of the Polish September Campaign at the beginning of World War II. It took place from October 2nd through October 5th, 1939, near the town of Kock, Poland. ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini The European Theatre was an area of heavy fighting from 1939 to 1945 during World War II. // Preceding events Main articles: Events preceding World War II in Europe, Causes of World War II After Germany was defeated in World War I, the Treaty of Versailles... President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a declaration of war against Japan on December 8, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. ... September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... October 6 is the 279th day of the year (280th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Following a spurious, German-staged "Polish attack" on 1 September 1939, German forces invaded Poland from the north, south, and west. Spread thin defending their long borders, the Polish armies were soon forced to withdraw east. After the mid-September Polish defeat in the Battle of the Bzura, the Germans gained an undisputed advantage. Polish forces then began a withdrawal southeast, following a plan that called for a long defence in the Romanian bridgehead area where Polish forces awaited an expected Western Allies counterattack and relief[3]. The Gleiwitz incident was the simulated attack on 31 August, 1939 against the German radio station Sender Gleiwitz (Polish: Radiostacja Gliwicka) in Gleiwitz, Germany (now Gliwice, Poland) on the eve of World War II in Europe. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Combatants Poland Germany Commanders Tadeusz Kutrzeba WÅ‚adysÅ‚aw Bortnowski Gerd von Rundstedt Johannes von Blaskowitz Strength 8 infantry divisions, 2-4 cavalry brigades 12 infantry divisions, 5 armoured and motorised divisions Casualties unknown unknown The Battle of the Bzura (also known as the Battle of Kutno) was a World... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ... The Western Allies were the democracies and their colonial peoples, within the broader coalition of Allies during World War II. The term is generally understood to refer to the countries of the Commonwealth of Nations (from 1939), exiled forces from Occupied Europe (from 1940), the United States (from 1941), and...


On September 17, 1939, the Soviet Red Army invaded the eastern regions of Poland in cooperation with Germany. The Soviets were carrying out their part of the secret appendix of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, which divided Eastern Europe into Nazi and Soviet spheres of influence. With the unexpected Soviet invasion, the Polish government decided the defence of the Romanian bridgehead was no longer feasible and ordered the evacuation of all troops to neutral Romania. By 1 October, Germany and the Soviet Union had completely overrun Poland, although the Polish government never surrendered. In addition, Poland's remaining land and air forces were evacuated to neighboring Romania and Hungary. Many of the exiles subsequently joined the recreated Polish Army in allied France, French-mandated Syria and the United Kingdom. September 17 is the 260th day of the year (261st in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... State motto (Russian): Пролетарии всех стран, соединяйтесь! (Transliterated: Proletarii vsekh stran, soedinyaytes!) (Translated: Workers of the world, unite!) Capital Moscow Official language None; Russian (de facto) Government Federation of Soviet republics Area  - Total  - % water 1st before collapse 22,402,200 km² Approx. ... The short forms Red Army and RKKA refer to the Workers and Peasants Red Army, (in Russian: Рабоче-Крестьянская Красная Армия - Raboche-Krestyanskaya Krasnaya Armiya), the armed forces first organized by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War in 1918. ... The name Kresy (Polish for borderlands, or more correctly Kresy Wschodnie, Eastern Borderlands) is used by Poles, mostly in historical context, to refer to the eastern part of Poland before the II World War. ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... A sphere of influence (SOI) is an area or region over which an organization or state exerts some kind of indirect cultural, economic, military or political domination. ... Evacuation can have several meanings: In wilderness first aid, evacuation is the transport of a seriously injured person out of the wilderness to the nearest point an ambulance can reach to take them to the hospital, or to the nearest emergency room. ... October 1 is the 274th day of the year (275th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... Polish Army (Polish Wojsko Polskie) is the name applied to the military forces of Poland. ... League of Nations mandates were territories established under Article 22 of the Covenant of the League of Nations, 28 June 1919. ...


In the aftermath of the September Campaign, a resistance movement was formed. Poland's fighting forces continued to contribute to Allied military operations, and did so throughout the duration of World War II. Germany captured the Soviet-occupied areas of Poland when it invaded the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941 and lost the territory in 1944 to an advancing Red Army. Over the course of the war, Poland lost over 20% of its pre-war population under an occupation that marked the end of the Second Polish Republic. Polish Secret State (also known as Polish Underground State; Polish Polskie Państwo Podziemne) is a term coined by Jan Karski in his book Story of a Secret State; it is used to refer to all underground resistance organizations in Poland during World War II, both military and civilian. ... Poland: First to Fight (poster, 1939). ... June 22 is the 173rd day of the year (174th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 192 days remaining. ... For the movie, see 1941 (film) 1941 (MCMXLI) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1941 calendar). ... Second Polish Republic 1921-1939 The Second Polish Republic is an unofficial name applied to the Republic of Poland between World War I and World War II. When the borders of the state were fixed in 1921, it had an area of 388. ...

Contents


Opposing forces

Main article: Opposing forces in the Polish September Campaign

Germany and Poland were the main opposing forces in the Polish September Campaign. ...

Germany

German Me 110 fighter plane.
German Me 110 fighter plane.
German Junkers Ju 87 dive bombers.
German Junkers Ju 87 dive bombers.

Germany had a significant numerical advantage over the Polish, and had developed a significant military prior to the conflict. The Heer (Army) had some 2,400 tanks organized into six panzer divisions, utilizing new operational doctrine. It held that these divisions should act in coordination with other elements of the military, punching holes in the enemy line and isolating selected enemy units which would be encircled and destroyed. This would be repeated and followed up by less mobile mechanized infantry and foot soldiers. The Luftwaffe (Air Force) provided both tactical and strategic air power, particularly dive bombers that attacked and disrupted the enemy's supply and communications lines. Together the new operational methods were nicknamed blitzkrieg (lightning war), but historians generally hold that German operations during the campaign were conservative, owing more to traditional methods. The strategy of the Wehrmacht (Armed Forces) was more in line with Vernichtungsgedanken, or a focus on envelopment to create pockets in broad-front annihilation. Messerschmitt Me 110 Heavy Fighter. ... Messerschmitt Me 110 Heavy Fighter. ... The Messerschmitt Bf 110 (later Me 110) was a twin-engine heavy fighter in the service of the Luftwaffe during World War II. Later in the war it was changed to fighter-bomber and night fighter operations, and it became the major night fighter type of the Luftwaffe. ... Junkers Ju 87 Stuka dive-bombers. ... Junkers Ju 87 Stuka dive-bombers. ... Junkers Ju 87 Dive-Bombers The Junkers Ju 87 or Stuka was the best known Sturzkampfflugzeug (German dive bomber) in World War II, instantly recognisable by its inverted gull wings, fixed undercarriage and siren. ... Heer (   listen?) is the German word for army. ... PzKpfw V-D, a Panther tank   Panzer? is German for armour. ... Military doctrine is a level of military planning between national strategy and unit-level tactics, techniques, and procedures. ... Encirclement is a military term for the situation when one sides force or target is isolated and surrounded by other sides forces. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafÉ™]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... Aerial warfare is the use of aircraft and other flying machines for the purposes of warfare. ... A dive bomber is a bomber aircraft that dives directly at its targets in order to provide greater accuracy. ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... A historian is a person who studies history. ... German cavalry and motorized units entering Poland from East Prussia during the Polish Campaign of 1939 Wehrmacht (Defence force) was the name of the armed forces of Germany from 1935 to 1945. ... Vernichtungsgedanken, meaning annihilation thoughts in German, is a Prussian / German strategic doctrine, dating to Frederick the Great. ...


Aircraft played a major role in the campaign. Bomber aircraft also attacked cities, causing huge losses amongst the civilian population through terror bombing. The Luftwaffe forces consisted of 1,180 fighter aircraft: 290 Ju 87 Stuka dive bombers, 290 conventional bombers (mainly of the He 111 type), and an assortment of 240 naval aircraft. In total, Germany had close to 3,000 aircraft, with nearly two thirds of them up to modern standards. Half of these were deployed on the Polish front. The Luftwaffe was among the best trained and equipped air forces in 1939. Airbus A380 An aircraft is any machine capable of atmospheric flight. ... A bomber is a military aircraft designed to attack ground targets, primarily by dropping bombs. ... Terror bombing is a strategy of deliberately bombing civilian targets and strafing civilians in order to break the morale of the enemy and make the civilian population of the enemy panic. ... Junkers Ju 87 Dive-Bombers The Junkers Ju 87 or Stuka was the best known Sturzkampfflugzeug (German dive bomber) in World War II, instantly recognisable by its inverted gull wings, fixed undercarriage and siren. ... The Heinkel He 111 was the primary Luftwaffe medium bomber during the early stages of World War II, and is perhaps the most obvious symbol of the German side of the Battle of Britain. ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Poland

Polish 7TP light tank.
Polish 7TP light tank.
Polish PZL P.11 fighter plane.
Polish PZL P.11 fighter plane.
Polish PZL-37 Los medium bomber plane.
Enlarge
Polish PZL-37 Los medium bomber plane.

Between 1936 and 1939, Poland invested heavily in industrialization in the Central Industrial Region (Centralny Okręg Przemysłowy). Preparations for a defensive war with Germany were ongoing for many years, but most plans assumed fighting would not begin before 1942. To raise funds for industrial development, Poland was selling much of the modern equipment it produced. The Polish Army had about a million soldiers but less than half were mobilised by the 1 September. Latecomers sustained significant casualties when public transport became targets of the Luftwaffe. The Polish military had fewer armoured forces than the Germans and, being dispersed within the infantry, were unable to effectively engage the enemy. Single-turret 7TP tank. ... Single-turret 7TP tank. ... The 7TP was the Polish light tank of the Second World War. ... PZL P.11c Polish fighter The only PZL P.11c that survived the war. ... PZL P.11c Polish fighter The only PZL P.11c that survived the war. ... The PZL P.11 was a Polish fighter aircraft, designed in early-1930s by PZL in Warsaw. ... Image File history File links PZL 37 ŁoÅ› , Polish bomber aircraft File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links PZL 37 ŁoÅ› , Polish bomber aircraft File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... The PZL-37 Los (in Polish: Łoś) was the Polish twin-engine medium bomber, used in the Polish September Campaign in 1939. ... Centralny OkrÄ™g PrzemysÅ‚owy (Polish for Central Industrial Region, abbreviated COP) was one of the biggest economic projects of the Second Polish Republic. ... Polish Army (Polish Wojsko Polskie) is the name applied to the military forces of Poland. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ...


Experiences in the Polish-Soviet War shaped Polish Army organisational and operational doctrine. Unlike the trench warfare of the First World War, the Polish-Soviet War was a conflict in which the cavalry's mobility played a decisive role. Poland acknowledged the benefits of mobility but was unwilling to invest heavily in many of the expensive and unproven new inventions since then and make these additions to its armed forces. In spite of this, Polish Cavalry brigades were used as a mobile mounted infantry and had some successes against both German infantry and German cavalry. Combatants Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic Second Polish Republic Commanders Mikhail Tukhachevsky Semyon Budyonny Joseph Stalin Józef Piłsudski Edward Rydz-Śmigły Strength 950,000 including reserves 5 million 360,000 including reserves 738,000 Casualties Unknown, dead estimated at 100,000 - 150,000 Unknown, dead estimated at... Trench Warfare is a form of war in which both opposing armies have static lines of fortifications dug into the ground, facing each other. ... Ypres, 1917, in the vicinity of the Battle of Passchendaele. ... Combatants Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic Second Polish Republic Commanders Mikhail Tukhachevsky Semyon Budyonny Joseph Stalin Józef Piłsudski Edward Rydz-Śmigły Strength 950,000 including reserves 5 million 360,000 including reserves 738,000 Casualties Unknown, dead estimated at 100,000 - 150,000 Unknown, dead estimated at... Kircholm, a 1925 painting by Wojciech Kossak. ... Volunteer Representative Squadron of City of Poznan in uniforms of 15th Poznan Uhlans Regiment Polish Cavalry (Polish kawaleria) can trace its origins back to the days of Mediæval mounted knights. ... Brigade is a term from military science which refers to military echelon under a division, above a regiment where that exists as such, nowadays often a group of several battalions (typically two to four), and directly attached supporting units (normally including at least an artillery battery and additional logistic support). ... Mounted infantry were soldiers who rode horses instead of marching, but actually fought on foot with muskets or rifles. ...


The Polish Air Force was at a severe disadvantage against the German Luftwaffe although, contrary to popular belief, it was not destroyed on the ground. Although the Polish Air Force lacked modern fighter aircraft, its pilots were also among the world's best-trained.[4] Flag of the Polish Air Force Polish Air Force (Siły Powietrzne Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Siły Powietrzne RP). ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafə]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... Flag of the Polish Air Force Polish Air Force (Siły Powietrzne Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Siły Powietrzne RP). ... An A-10 Thunderbolt II, F-86 Sabre, P-38 Lightning and P-51 Mustang fly in formation during an air show at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. ...


Overall, the Germans enjoyed numerical and qualitiative aircraft superiority. Poland had only about 400 aircraft, including 169 fighters and some obsolete transport, reconnaissance and training aircraft. Only 36 Polish aircraft could be considered modern, such as the PZL.37 Łoś bomber. The other Polish craft were far older than their German counterparts. The Polish PZL P.11 fighter, produced in the early 1930s, was capable of only 350 km/h (about 210 mi/hr), far less than German bombers. An A-10 Thunderbolt II, F-86 Sabre, P-38 Lightning and P-51 Mustang fly in formation during an air show at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. ... Mixed reconnaissance patrol of the Polish Home Army and the Soviet Red Army during Operation Tempest, 1944 Reconnaissance is the military term for the active gathering of information about an enemy, or other conditions, by physical observation. ... The PZL-37 ŁoÅ› (Polish: moose) was a Polish twin-engine medium bomber, used in the Polish September Campaign in 1939. ... A bomber is a military aircraft designed to attack ground targets, primarily by dropping bombs. ... The PZL P.11 was a Polish fighter aircraft, designed in early-1930s by PZL in Warsaw. ... This article or section is missing references or citation of sources. ...


The Polish Navy was a small fleet comprising destroyers, submarines and smaller support vessels. Most Polish surface units followed Operation Peking, leaving Polish ports on August 20 and escaping to the North Sea to join with the British Royal Navy. Submarine forces participated in Operation Worek, with the goal of engaging and damaging German shipping in the Baltic Sea, but with much less success. In addition, many Polish Merchant Marine ships joined the British merchant fleet and took part in wartime convoys. Flag of the Polish Navy Polish Navy Ensign The Polish Navy (Marynarka Wojenna RP, MW RP) is the branch of Polands armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... USS Lassen, an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer In naval terminology, a destroyer (French: contre-torpilleur, German: Zerstörer, Spanish: destructor, Italian: cacciatorpediniere) is a fast and maneuverable yet long-endurance warship intended to escort larger vessels in a fleet or battle group and defend them against smaller, short-range attackers... German UC-1 class World War I submarine A model of Gunter Priens Unterseeboot 47 (U-47), German WWII Type VII diesel-electric hunter-killer (SSK) submarine USS Virginia, a Virginia-class nuclear attack (SSN) submarine A submarine is a specialized watercraft that can operate underwater. ... Polish destroyers during the Peking Plan. ... August 20 is the 232nd day of the year (233rd in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... The North Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean, located between the coasts of Norway and Denmark in the east, the coast of the British Isles in the west, and the German, Dutch, Belgian and French coasts in the south. ... The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the senior service of the British armed services, being the oldest of its three branches. ... A convoy is a group of vehicles or ships traveling together for mutual support. ...


Soviet Union

For more details on this topic, see Soviet order of battle for invasion of Poland in 1939.

The Soviet order of battle for invasion of Poland in 1939 details the major combat units arrayed for operations against Poland in September, 1939. ...

Order of battle

Order of battle of Poland: An order of battle (often abbreviated as ORBAT, OOB, or OB) is an organizational tool used by military intelligence to list and analyze enemy military units. ...

Order of battle of invading forces: Polish OOB during the September Campaign. ... This article needs copyediting (checking for proper English spelling, grammar, usage, tone, style, and voice). ... This article details the Order of Battle of the Polish Navy prior to the outbreak of World War II and the Polish Defensive War of 1939 Following World War I, Polands shoreline was relatively short and included no major seaports. ... Polish Armament in 1939-45 // Aircrafts Oldest aircrafts SPAD XIII Fokker D.VII Oeffag D.III Ansaldo Balilla SPAD VII Albatros D.III Sopwith Dolphin Fokker E.V (D.VIII). ...

The German order of battle for Operation Fall Weiss details the major German combat units used during Operation Fall Weiss, Germanys code name for the invasion of Poland. ... The Soviet order of battle for invasion of Poland in 1939 details the major combat units arrayed for operations against Poland in September, 1939. ...

Prelude to the campaign

Polish map showing the "Polish Corridor" in northern Poland.
Polish map showing the "Polish Corridor" in northern Poland.
Main article: Causes of World War II

The Nazi Party, led by Adolf Hitler, took power in Germany in 1933. Hitler at first pursued a policy of rapprochement with Poland, culminating in the German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact of 1934. Despite Hitler's efforts to get Poland to join the Anti-Comintern Pact, the Poles feared that they would be made a satellite state of the Third Reich and refused. [1] File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... A Polish map showing the territory known as the Polish Corridor The Polish Corridor was the name given to a strip of territory which was transferred from Germany to Poland by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. ... World War II is one of the most complicated conflicts in history and it is therefore difficult to explain why it started. ... The Nazi swastika symbol The National Socialist German Workers Party ( German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei), better known as the NSDAP or the Nazi Party was a political party that was led to power in Germany by Adolf Hitler in 1933. ... Hitler redirects here. ... 1933 (MCMXXXIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... A policy is a plan of action to guide decisions and actions. ... The French for bring together. Used in English to describe the theory (that) says that children are best able to explore when they have the knowledge of a secure base to return to in times of need. See Attachment theory This article is a stub. ... The German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact (German: , Polish: ) was an international treaty between Nazi Germany and the Second Polish Republic signed on January 26, 1934. ... 1934 (MCMXXXIV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Since 1938, Nazi Germany began to demand incorporating Free City of Danzig to the Reich. Hitler was also concerned that the German exclave of East Prussia was separated from Germany by the land acquired by Poland after the Treaty of Versailles (the Polish Corridor). Both Danzig and the Polish Corridor constituted territories lost by Germany after World War I, and Hitler made an appeal to German nationalism by promising to "liberate" the Germans still living there. Germany turned to aggressive diplomacy, unilaterally withdrawing from both the German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact of 1934 and the London Naval Agreement of 1935 on April 28, 1939. In early 1939, Hitler had already issued secret orders to prepare for the "solution of the Polish problem by military means". At the same time Nazi Germany demanded Danzig and a bridge[citation needed] connecting East Prussia with Germany proper. The proposal served to practically subordinate Poland to the Axis and the Anti-Comintern Bloc. Poland refused this in order to retain its independence [2] and was backed by a March 30 guarantee from Britain and France. The goal of British foreign policy between 1919 and 1939 had been to prevent another world war by a mixture of "carrot and stick", a strategy of appeasement. The "stick" in this case was the Polish-British Common Defense Pact, intended to discourage German aggression. At the same time, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and his Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax hoped to offer Hitler a "carrot" in the form of another deal similar to the Munich Agreement, which would see the Free City of Danzig and the Polish Corridor returned to Germany in exchange for a promise to leave the rest of Poland alone. Meanwhile, secret Nazi-Soviet talks were held in Moscow, which resulted in the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact on August 22, which capitalized on France and Britain's failure to isolate Germany and solidify an alliance with the Soviet Union. With this surprising pact between political enemies, Hitler neutralized the possibility of Soviet opposition in a potential campaign against Poland, the Soviet Union's western neighbor. Also, in a secret protocol of this pact, the Germans and the Soviets agreed to divide Eastern Europe, including Poland, into two spheres of influence; the western third of the country was to go to Germany and the eastern two-thirds to the Soviet Union. Although Western Allies' intelligence had uncovered the secret appendix concerning Poland, this information was not shared with the Polish government. Napoleonic-era Danzig 19th century map of Duchy of Warsaw and Free City of Danzig The Free City of Danzig, sometimes referred to as the Republic of Danzig, was a semi-independent state established by Napoleon during the Napoleonic Wars in years 9 September 1807– 22 January 1813/1815. ... East Prussia (German: Ostpreu en; Polish: Prusy Wschodnie; Russian: Восточная Пруссия — Vostochnaya Prussiya) was a province of Kingdom of Prussia, situated on the territory of former Ducal Prussia. ... The Treaty of Versailles (1919) was the peace treaty which officially ended World War I between the Allied and Associated Powers and Germany. ... A Polish map showing the territory known as the Polish Corridor The Polish Corridor was the name given to a strip of territory which was transferred from Germany to Poland by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. ... Combatants Allies: Serbia, Russia, France, Romania, Belgium, British Empire, United States, Italy, and others Central Powers: Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, Ottoman Empire Casualties Military dead: 5 million Civilian deaths: 3 million Total of dead: 8 million Military dead: 4 million Civilian deaths: 3 million Total dead: 7 million The First... Liberty Leading the People by Eugène Delacroix Nationalism is an ideology that holds that (ethnically or culturally defined) nations are the fundamental units for human social life, and makes certain cultural and political claims based upon that belief; in particular, the claim that the nation is the only legitimate... The German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact (German: , Polish: ) was an international treaty between Nazi Germany and the Second Polish Republic signed on January 26, 1934. ... 1934 (MCMXXXIV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... The London Naval Treaty was an agreement between the United Kingdom, Japan, France, Italy and the United States, signed on April 22, 1930, which aimed to regulate submarine warfare and limited military shipbuilding. ... 1935 (MCMXXXV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... April 28 is the 118th day of the year (119th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 247 days remaining. ... March 30 is the 89th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (90th in leap years). ... A foreign policy is a set of political goals that seeks to outline how a particular country will interact with the other countries of the world. ... Appeasement is a strategic maneuver, based on either pragmatism, fear of war, or moral conviction, that leads to the known acceptance of imposed conditions in lieu of armed resistance. ... Sir Robert Walpole, the first Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. ... Arthur Neville Chamberlain, PC (18 March 1869 – 9 November 1940) was a Conservative British politician and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1937 to 1940. ... The title of Foreign Secretary has been traditionally used to refer to the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs. ... Cover of Time Magazine April 12, 1926 Edward Frederick Lindley Wood, 1st Earl of Halifax, known as Lord Irwin from 1926 until 1934, (1881-1959) was a British Conservative politician. ... Chamberlain holds the paper containing the resolution to commit to peaceful methods signed by both Hitler and himself on his return from Germany in September 1938. ... Napoleonic-era Danzig 19th century map of Duchy of Warsaw and Free City of Danzig The Free City of Danzig, sometimes referred to as the Republic of Danzig, was a semi-independent state established by Napoleon during the Napoleonic Wars in years 9 September 1807– 22 January 1813/1815. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Nazism. ... Soviet redirects here. ... Government Russia District Subdivision Russia Central Federal District Federal City Mayor Yuri Luzhkov Geographical characteristics Area  - City 1,081 km² Population  - City (2005)    - Density 10,415,400   8537. ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... August 22 is the 234th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (235th in leap years), with 131 days remaining. ... Espionage is the practice of obtaining information about an organization or a society that is considered secret or confidential (spying) without the permission of the holder of the information. ...

Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov signs the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. Behind him stand (left) German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and (right) Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin.
Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov signs the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. Behind him stand (left) German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and (right) Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin.

The German assault was originally scheduled to begin at 0400 on 26 August. However, when Britain announced that its guarantee of Polish independence had been formalized by an alliance between the two countries, Hitler wavered and postponed his attack until 1 September, trying on 26th of August to dissuade the British and the French from interfering in the conflict. The negotiations convinced Hitler that there was little chance the Western Allies would declare war on Germany, and even if they did, due to the lack of territorial guarantees to Poland, they would be willing to negotiate a compromise favourable to Germany after its conquest of Poland. Meanwhile, the number of cross-border raids and sabotages by German Abwehr units, border skirmishes and increased overflights by high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft, signalled that war was imminent. This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Vyacheslav Molotov Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov (Russian: ) (March 9 [O.S. February 25] 1890 –November 8, 1986), Soviet politician and diplomat, was a leading figure in the Soviet government from the 1920s, when he rose to power as a protege of Joseph Stalin, to the 1950s, when he was dismissed from... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim von Ribbentrop Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim von Ribbentrop (born Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim Ribbentrop) (April 30, 1893 – October 16, 1946) was Foreign Minister of Germany from 1938 until 1945. ... (Russian: Ио́сиф Виссарио́нович Ста́лин, Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin; December 18 [O.S. December 6] 1878[1] – March 5, 1953), also spelled Josef Stalin, was the leader (Premier) of the Soviet Union from the mid-1920s to his death in 1953 and General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet... August 26 is the 238th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (239th in leap years). ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... Negotiation is the process whereby interested parties resolve disputes, agree upon courses of action, bargain for individual or collective advantage, and/or attempt to craft outcomes which serve their mutual interests. ... The Abwehr was a German intelligence organization from 1921 to 1944. ... A military aircraft used for monitoring enemy activity, usually carrying no armament. ...


On 29 August, Germany issued Poland a final ultimatum, now demanding the Polish Corridor in its entirety. When Poland refused to hand over the territory, German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop declared negotiations with Poland to be at an end. On 30 August, the Polish Navy sent its destroyer flotilla to Britain as advised. Meanwhile, Poland braced for war. On the same day, Polish Marshal Rydz-Śmigly announced mobilization of Polish troops. However, he was pressured into revoking the order by the French, who apparently still hoped for a diplomatic settlement, failing to realize that the Germans were fully mobilized and concentrated at the Polish border. On 31 August 1939, Hitler ordered hostilities against Poland to start at 4:45 the next morning. Due to the prior discontinuation, Poland managed to mobilise only 70% of its planned forces, and many units were still forming or moving to their designated frontline positions. August 29 is the 241st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (242nd in leap years), with 124 days remaining. ... An ultimatum is a final demand, with a threat, made without intent of negotiation, for example before war, before killing hostages, etc. ... Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim von Ribbentrop Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim von Ribbentrop (born Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim Ribbentrop) (April 30, 1893 – October 16, 1946) was Foreign Minister of Germany from 1938 until 1945. ... August 30 is the 242nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (243rd in leap years), with 123 days remaining. ... Flag of the Polish Navy Polish Navy Ensign The Polish Navy (Marynarka Wojenna RP, MW RP) is the branch of Polands armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... A flotilla (from Spanish, meaning a flota of small ships, and this from French flotte), or naval flotilla, is a formation of small warships that may be part of a larger fleet. ... Edward Rydz-Śmigły Edward Rydz-Śmigły (born March 11, 1886 in Łapszyn near Brzeżana, Tarnopol Voivodship - died December 2, 1941 in Warsaw), codenames Śmigły, Tarłowski, Adam Zawisza. ... Mobilization or mobilisation is the act of assembling and making both troops and supplies ready for war. ... This page is about negotiations; for the board game, see Diplomacy (game). ... August 31 is the 243rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (244th in leap years), with 122 days remaining. ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Details of the campaign

Deployment of German and Polish divisions, September 1, 1939.
Deployment of German and Polish divisions, September 1, 1939.

Download high resolution version (883x933, 229 KB)Polish and German divisions on Sept. ... Download high resolution version (883x933, 229 KB)Polish and German divisions on Sept. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...

Plans

German plan

The German plan Fall Weiss, for what became known as the September campaign, was created by General Franz Halder, chief of the general staff, and directed by General Walther von Brauchitsch, the commander in chief of the upcoming campaign. The plan called for the start of hostilities before the declaration of war, which pursued a traditional doctrine of mass encirclement and the destruction of enemy forces. Germany's material advantages, including the use of modern airpower and tanks, were to be of great advantage. The infantry - far from completely mechanized but fitted with fast moving artillery and logistic support - was to be supported by German tanks (panzers) and small numbers of truck-mounted infantry (the Schützen regiments, forerunners of the panzergrenadiers) to assist the rapid movement of troops and concentrate on localized parts of the enemy front, eventually isolating segments of the enemy, surrounding, and destroying them. The pre-war armored idea (which an American journalist in 1939 would dub Blitzkrieg), which was advocated by some generals including Guderian, would have had the armor blasting holes in the enemy's front and ranging deep into the enemy's rear areas, but in actuality, the campaign in Poland would be fought along more traditional lines. This was due to conservatism on the part of the German high command, who mainly restricted the role of armor and mechanized forces to supporting the conventional infantry divisions. This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel, Adolf Hitler, a General Staff officer and General Alfred Jacob NOT Franz Halder Franz Ritter von Halder (June 30, 1884- April 2, 1972) was a German General and the head of the Army General Staff from 1938 until September 1942, when he was dismissed after frequent... In the military systems of many countries, the Chief of the General Staff is the professional head of that countrys General Staff. ... Walther von Brauchitsch Von Brauchitsch in 1939 Walther von Brauchitsch (October 4, 1881, Berlin - October 18, 1948, Hamburg) was commander-in-chief of the Wehrmacht in the early years of World War II. Brauchitsch was commissioned in the Prussian Guard in 1900. ... A Commander-in-Chief is the commander of a nations military forces or significant element of those forces. ... President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a declaration of war against Japan on December 8, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. ... PzKpfw V-D, a Panther tank   Panzer? is German for armour. ... This article needs cleanup. ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... A military front is an area in which an army or nation expects to do most of its fighting. ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... General Heinz Guderian Heinz Wilhelm Guderian (17 June 1888-14 May 1954) was a military theorist and General of the German Army during the Second World War. ...


Poland was a country well suited for mobile operations when the weather cooperated - a country of flat plains with long frontiers totalling almost 3,500 miles, Poland had long borders with Germany on the west and north (facing East Prussia) of 1,250 miles. Those had been extended by another 500 miles on the southern side in the aftermath of the Munich Agreement of 1938; the German incorporation of Bohemia and Moravia and creation of the German puppet state of Slovakia meant that Poland's southern flank was exposed to invasion. In geography, a plain is a large area of land with relatively low relief. ... East Prussia (German: Ostpreu en; Polish: Prusy Wschodnie; Russian: Восточная Пруссия — Vostochnaya Prussiya) was a province of Kingdom of Prussia, situated on the territory of former Ducal Prussia. ... The Czech Republic (Czech: Česká republika) is a landlocked country in Central Europe. ... A puppet state is a state whose government, though notionally of the same culture as the governed people - owes its existence (or other major debt) to being installed, supported or controlled by a more powerful entity, typically a foreign power. ...


German planners intended to fully utilise their advantageously long border with the great enveloping manoeuvre of Fall Weiss. German units were to invade Poland from three directions:

  • A main attack from the German mainland through the western Polish border. This was to be carried out by Army Group South commanded by General Gerd von Rundstedt, attacking from German Silesia and from the Moravian and Slovakian border: General Johannes Blaskowitz's 8th Army was to drive eastward against Łódź; General Wilhelm List's 14th Army was to push on toward Kraków and to turn the Poles' Carpathian flank; and General Walter von Reichenau's 10th Army, in the centre with Army Group South's armour, was to deliver the decisive blow with a northwestward thrust into the heart of Poland.
  • A second route of attack from the northern Prussian area. General Fedor von Bock commanded Army Group North comprising General Georg von Küchler's 3rd Army, which struck southward from East Prussia, and General Günther von Kluge's 4th Army, which struck eastward across the base of the Polish Corridor.
  • A tertiary attack by part of Army Group South's allied Slovak units from the territory of Slovakia.
  • From within Poland the German minority would assist in the assault on Poland by engaging in diversion and sabotage operations through Selbstschutz units prepared before the war.

All three assaults were to converge on Warsaw, while the main Polish army was to be encircled and destroyed west of the Vistula. Fall Weiss was initiated on 1 September 1939 and was the first operation of the Second World War in Europe. Generalfeldmarschall Gerd von Rundstedt Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Field Marshal of the German Army during World War II. He was one of Germanys more competent generals, and is remembered for remaining apolitical throughout his career. ... Prussian Silesia, 1871, outlined in yellow; Silesia at the close of the Seven Years War in 1763, outlined in cyan (areas now in the Czech Republic were Austrian-ruled at that time) Silesia (Czech: ; German: ; Polish: ) is a historical region in central Europe. ... Moravia in relation to the current kraje of the Czech Republic Moravia (Czech and Slovak: Morava, German: ( ), Hungarian: Morvaország, Polish: Morawy) is a historical region in the east of the Czech Republic. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Łódź (pronunciation: ), Polands third-largest city (population 776,297 in 2004), lies in the center of the country. ... Wilhelm List (Siegmund Wilhelm von List) (May 14, 1880 - August 17, 1971), was a German Field Marshal during World War II. He entered the Army in 1898 and served as a staff officer in the First World War. ... Tomb of Kazimierz the Great St. ... The Carpathian Convention is a framework type convention pursuing a comprehensive policy and cooperating in the protection and sustainable development of the Carpathians. ... Field-Marshal Walther von Reichenau Walther von Reichenau (August 16, 1884 - January 17, 1942), German military commander, was the son of a Prussian general and joined the German Army in 1902. ... Flag of the Kingdom of Prussia, 1894-1918 Prussia (German: ; Latin: Borussia, Prutenia; Lithuanian: ; Old Prussian: Prūsa; Polish: ) was, most recently, a historic state originating in East Prussia, an area which for centuries had substantial influence on German and European history. ... Generalfeldmarschall Fedor von Bock Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Küstrin, Germany. ... Field Marshal Georg von Küchler Georg Karl Friedrich Wilhelm von Küchler (May 30, 1881 - May 25, 1968) was a German field marshal during World War II. Born in Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Küchler led the German German Eighteenth Army in 1940 in the invasion of neutral Holland... Günther von Kluge Günther von Kluge (nicknamed Hans) (October 30, 1882 - August 19, 1944), was a German military leader. ... A Polish map showing the territory known as the Polish Corridor The Polish Corridor was the name given to a strip of territory which was transferred from Germany to Poland by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. ... The definition of a minority group can vary, depending on specific context, but generally refers to either a sociological sub-group that does not form either a majority or a plurality of the total population, or a group that, while not necessarily a numerical minority, is disadvantaged or otherwise has... Selbstschutz (German: ) was a name used by a number of paramilitary organisations created out of ethnic Germans in Central Europe. ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto Stołeczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... Encirclement is a military term for the situation when one sides force or target is isolated and surrounded by other sides forces. ... The Vistula (Polish: Wisła) is the longest river in Poland. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...

Dispositions of opposing forces, August 31, 1939, and the German plan.
Dispositions of opposing forces, August 31, 1939, and the German plan.

Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 183 KB)http://www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 183 KB)http://www. ... August 31 is the 243rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (244th in leap years), with 122 days remaining. ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...

Polish plan

The Polish defense plan, Zachód (West), was shaped by political determination to deploy forces directly at the German-Polish border, based upon London's promise to come to Warsaw's military aid in the event of invasion. Moreover, with the nation's most valuable natural resources, industry and highly populated regions near the western border (Silesia region), Polish policy centered on the protection of such regions, especially as many politicians feared that if Poland should retreat from the regions disputed by Germany (like the Polish Corridor, cause of the famous "Danzig or War" ultimatum), Britain and France would sign a separate peace treaty with Germany similar to the Munich Agreement of 1938. In addition, none of those countries specifically guaranteed Polish borders or territorial integrity. On those grounds, Poland disregarded French advice to deploy the bulk of their forces behind the natural barriers of the wide Vistula and San rivers, even though some Polish generals supported it as a better strategy. The Zachód plan did allow the Polish armies to retreat inside the country, but it was supposed to be a slow retreat behind prepared positions near rivers (Narew, Vistula and San), giving the country time to finish its mobilisation, and was to be turned into a general counteroffensive when the Western Allies would launch their own promised offensive. For other uses, see London (disambiguation). ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... Prussian Silesia, 1871, outlined in yellow; Silesia at the close of the Seven Years War in 1763, outlined in cyan (areas now in the Czech Republic were Austrian-ruled at that time) Silesia (Czech: ; German: ; Polish: ) is a historical region in central Europe. ... A politician is an individual who is a formally recognized and active member of a government, or a person who influences the way a society is governed through an understanding of political power and group dynamics. ... A Polish map showing the territory known as the Polish Corridor The Polish Corridor was the name given to a strip of territory which was transferred from Germany to Poland by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. ... An ultimatum is a final demand, with a threat, made without intent of negotiation, for example before war, before killing hostages, etc. ... Chamberlain holds the paper containing the resolution to commit to peaceful methods signed by both Hitler and himself on his return from Germany in September 1938. ... 1938 (MCMXXXVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will take you to calendar). ... Territorial integrity is the principle under international law that nation-states should not attempt to promote secessionist movements or to promote border changes in other nation-states. ... The Vistula (Polish: WisÅ‚a) is the longest river in Poland. ... San or SAN can refer to any of the following: Look up San in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Look up san in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Narew (Belarusian: На́раў) is a river in western Belarus and north-eastern Poland, a tributary of the Vistula river. ... This page is a candidate to be copied to Wiktionary. ... The group of countries known as the Allies of World War II consisted of those nations opposed to the Axis Powers during the Second World War. ...


The Polish Army's most pessimistic fall-back plan involved retreat behind the river San to the southeastern voivodships and their lengthy defence (the Romanian bridgehead plan). The British and French estimated that Poland should be able to defend that region for two to three months, while Poland estimated it could hold it for at least six months. This Polish plan was based around the expectation that the Western Allies would keep their end of the signed alliance treaty and quickly start an offensive of their own. However, neither the French nor the British government made plans to attack Germany while the Polish campaign was fought. In addition, they expected the war to develop into trench warfare much like World War I had, forcing the Germans to sign a peace treaty restoring Poland's borders. The Polish government, however, was not notified of this strategy and based all of its defence plans on the expectation of a quick relief action by their Western Allies. A Voivodship (also voivodeship, Romanian: voievodat, Polish: województwo, Serbian: vojvodstvo or vojvodina) was a feudal state in medieval Romania, Hungary, Poland, Russia and Serbia (see Vojvodina), ruled by a Voivod (voivode). ... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ... Trench Warfare is a form of war in which both opposing armies have static lines of fortifications dug into the ground, facing each other. ...

Polish infantry in action.
Polish infantry in action.

The plan to defend the borders contributed vastly to the Polish defeat. Polish forces were stretched thin on the very long border and, lacking compact defence lines and good defence positions along unadvantegeous terrain, mechanized German forces often were able to encircle them. In addition, supply lines, were often poorly protected. Approximately one-third of Poland's forces were concentrated in or near the Polish Corridor (in northwestern Poland), where they were perilously exposed to a double envelopment — from East Prussia and the west combined and isolated in a pocket. In the south, facing the main avenues of a German advance, the Polish forces were thinly spread. At the same time, nearly another one-third of Poland's troops were massed in reserve in the north-central part of the country, between the major cities of Łódź and Warsaw, under commander in chief Marshal Edward Rydz-Śmigły. The Poles' forward concentration in general forfeited their chance of fighting a series of delaying actions, since their army, unlike some of Germany's, traveled largely on foot and was unable to retreat to their defensive positions in the rear or to staff them before they were overrun by German mechanized columns. Image File history File links Polish infantry File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Polish infantry File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Motorized forces or military units are those that have trucks, or other wheeled, un-armoured transport as an integral part of their organization. ... Supply lines are roads, rail, and other transportation infrastructure needed to replenish the consumables that a military unit requires to function in the field. ... A pincer movement whereby the blue force doubly envelops the red force. ... Łódź (pronunciation: ), Polands third-largest city (population 776,297 in 2004), lies in the center of the country. ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... Edward Rydz-ÅšmigÅ‚y (March 11, 1886 - December 2, 1941); nom de guerre ÅšmigÅ‚y, TarÅ‚owski, Adam Zawisza) was a Polish politician, an officer of the Polish Army, painter and poet. ...


The political decision to defend the border was not the Polish high command's only strategic mistake. Polish pre-war propaganda stated that any German invasion would be easily repelled, so that the eventual Polish defeats in the September Campaign came as a shock to many civilians, who, unprepared for such news and with no training for such an event, panicked and retreated east, spreading chaos, lowering troop morale and making road transportation for Polish troops very difficult. The propaganda also had some negative consequences for the Polish troops themselves, whose communications, disrupted by German mobile units operating in the rear and civilians blocking roads, were further thrown into chaos by bizarre reports from Polish radio stations and newspapers, which often reported imaginary victories and other military operations. This led to some Polish troops being encircled or taking a stand against overwhelming odds, when they thought they were actually counterattacking or would soon receive reinforcements from other victorious areas[5]. It has been suggested that Propaganda in the United States be merged into this article or section. ... Morale is a term for the capacity of people to maintain belief in an institution or a goal. ...


Phase 1: German invasion

 German battleship Schleswig-Holstein shells Poland's Westerplatte.
German battleship Schleswig-Holstein shells Poland's Westerplatte.
German forces during failed assault on Warsaw's Wola district, September 9, 1939.
German forces during failed assault on Warsaw's Wola district, September 9, 1939.
situation up to September 14, 1939
situation up to September 14, 1939

Following a number of German-staged incidents (Operation Himmler), which gave German propaganda an excuse to claim that German forces were acting in self-defense, the first regular act of war took place on September 1, 1939, at 04:40 hours, when the German Air Force (Luftwaffe) attacked the Polish town of Wieluń, destroying 75% of the city and killing close to 1,200 people, most of them civilians. Five minutes later, at 04:45 hours, the old German battleship Schleswig-Holstein opened fire on the Polish enclave of Westerplatte at the Free City of Danzig on the Baltic Sea. At 08:00 hours, German troops, still without a formal declaration of war issued, attacked near the Polish town of Mokra. Later that day, the Germans opened fronts along Poland's western, southern and northern borders, while German aircraft began raids on Polish cities. Main routes of attack led eastwards from the German mainland through the western Polish border. A second route carried supporting attacks from East Prussia in the north, and a German and allied Slovak tertiary attack by units (Army "Bernolak") from the territory of German-allied Slovakia in the south. All three assaults converged on the Polish capital of Warsaw. Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... The Schleswig-Holstein, was a German battleship, that fought in both World Wars. ... German battleship Schleswig-Holstein shelling Polish Westerplatte, 1 September 1939 Westerplatte is a peninsula in GdaÅ„sk, Poland, at an estuary of the Dead Vistula (one of the Vistula delta estuaries), in the GdaÅ„sk harbour channel. ... Image File history File links Warsaw_siege4. ... Image File history File links Warsaw_siege4. ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... The neutrality of this article is disputed. ... September 9 is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Download high resolution version (1256x956, 402 KB)Polish Campaign - Operations - September 1-14 Source: US ARMY License: US Government document. ... Download high resolution version (1256x956, 402 KB)Polish Campaign - Operations - September 1-14 Source: US ARMY License: US Government document. ... September 14 is the 257th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (258th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... The Gleiwitz incident was the simulated attack on 31 August, 1939 against the German radio station Sender Gleiwitz (Polish: Radiostacja Gliwicka) in Gleiwitz, Germany (now Gliwice, Poland) on the eve of World War II in Europe. ... It has been suggested that Propaganda in the United States be merged into this article or section. ... Self defense refers to actions taken by a person to defend onself, ones property or ones home. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... WieluÅ„ is a town in central Poland with 25,500 inhabitants (1995). ... HMS Victory in 1884 given to the most powerfully gun-armed and most heavily armored classes of warships built between the 15th and 20th centuries. ... Schleswig-Holstein, a German battleship, started World War II by firing at the Polish base at Westerplatte on 1 September 1939. ... German battleship Schleswig-Holstein shelling Polish Westerplatte, 1 September 1939 Westerplatte is a peninsula in GdaÅ„sk, Poland, at an estuary of the Dead Vistula (one of the Vistula delta estuaries), in the GdaÅ„sk harbour channel. ... Napoleonic-era Danzig 19th century map of Duchy of Warsaw and Free City of Danzig The Free City of Danzig, sometimes referred to as the Republic of Danzig, was a semi-independent state established by Napoleon during the Napoleonic Wars in years 9 September 1807– 22 January 1813/1815. ... The Baltic Sea is located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. ... Combatants Germany Poland Commanders Georg-Hans Reinhardt, Friedrich Kirchner Julian Filipowicz Strength 2 panzer divisions, infantry division cavalry brigade, elements of one infantry division Casualties ca. ...

Polish Bofors 40 mm antiaircraft gun and a bombed Polish Army column during the Battle of the Bzura.
Polish Bofors 40 mm antiaircraft gun and a bombed Polish Army column during the Battle of the Bzura.

The Allied governments declared war on Germany on September 3; however, they failed to provide Poland with any meaningful support. The German-French border had a few minor skirmishes, although the majority of German forces, including eighty-five percent of their armoured forces, were engaged in Poland. Despite some Polish successes in minor border battles, German technical, operational and numerical superiority forced the Polish armies to withdraw from the borders towards Warsaw and Lwów. The Luftwaffe gained air superiority early in the campaign. By 3 September, when Kluge in the north had reached the Vistula (some 10 kilometres from the German border at that time) river and Küchler was approaching the Narew River, Reichenau's armour was already beyond the Warta river; two days later his left wing was well to the rear of Łódź and his right wing at the town of Kielce; and by 8 September one of his armoured corps was on the outskirts of Warsaw, having advanced 140 miles in the first week of war. Light divisions on Reichenau's right were on the Vistula between Warsaw and the town of Sandomierz by 9 September, while List, in the south, was on the river San above and below the town of Przemyśl. At the same time, Guderian led his 3rd Army tanks across the Narew, attacking the line of the Bug River already encircling Warsaw. All the German armies had made progress in fulfilling their parts of the Fall Weiss plan. The Polish armies were splitting up into uncoordinated fragments, some of which were retreating while others were delivering disjointed attacks on the nearest German columns. Polish Bofors AA gun and a bombed column of Polish Army during the Battle of Bzura This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Polish Bofors AA gun and a bombed column of Polish Army during the Battle of Bzura This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Bofors 40mm/L60. ... Combatants Poland Germany Commanders Tadeusz Kutrzeba WÅ‚adysÅ‚aw Bortnowski Gerd von Rundstedt Johannes von Blaskowitz Strength 8 infantry divisions, 2-4 cavalry brigades 12 infantry divisions, 5 armoured and motorised divisions Casualties unknown unknown The Battle of the Bzura (also known as the Battle of Kutno) was a World... September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... Western betrayal is a popular term in several Central European nations (including Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, the Baltic States, and other Eastern European countries) which refers to the foreign policy of several Western countries during the period from the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 through World War II... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... Motto: Semper fidelis Oblast Lviv Oblast Municipal government City council (Львівська міська рада) Mayor City chairman Lyubomyr Bunyak Area 171,01 km² Population  - city  - urban  - density 808,900 ? 4786/km² Founded City rights 13th century 1353 Latitude Longitude 49°51′ N 24°01′ E Area code +0322 Car plates  ? Twin towns Corning, Freiburg... Air superiority is the dominance in the air power of one side air forces of another side during a military campaign. ... September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... Narew (Belarusian: На́раў) is a river in western Belarus and north-eastern Poland, a tributary of the Vistula river. ... Warta (Latin: Varta, German: Warthe) is a river in western-central Poland, a tributary of the Oder river. ... Łódź (pronunciation: ), Polands third-largest city (population 776,297 in 2004), lies in the center of the country. ... Kielce (pronounce: [ˈkjεlʦε]) is a city in central Poland with 202,609 inhabitants (2006). ... September 8 is the 251st day of the year (252nd in leap years). ... The Vistula (Polish: WisÅ‚a) is the longest river in Poland. ... Sandomierz is a city in south-eastern Poland with 27,000 inhabitants (1995). ... September 9 is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years). ... San or SAN can refer to any of the following: Look up San in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Look up san in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... PrzemyÅ›l (pronounce: pʃεmiÉ•l, Ukrainian: Перемишль, Peremyshl) is a town in south-eastern Poland with 67,847 inhabitants (2005). ... Bug (pronunciation Boog) is the name of two rivers in Europe: Western Bug Southern Bug See also Bug - other kinds of bugs This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ...


Polish forces abandoned regions of Pomerania, Greater Poland and Silesia in the first week of the campaign, after a series of battles known as the Battle of the Border. Thus the Polish plan for border defence was proven a dismal failure. The German advance, as a whole, was not slowed down and the Germans moved quickly, overwhelming secondary positions. On 10 September, the Polish commander in chief, Marshal Edward Rydz-Śmigły, ordered a general retreat to the southeast, towards the so-called Romanian bridgehead. Historic Pomerania (outlined in yellow) on the background of modern country borders. ... Greater Poland (also Great Poland; Polish: Wielkopolska, German: Grosspolen, Latin: Polonia Maior) is one of the historical regions of Poland. ... Prussian Silesia, 1871, outlined in yellow; Silesia at the close of the Seven Years War in 1763, outlined in cyan (areas now in the Czech Republic were Austrian-ruled at that time) Silesia (Czech: ; German: ; Polish: ) is a historical region in central Europe. ... September 10 is the 253rd day of the year (254th in leap years). ... Edward Rydz-ÅšmigÅ‚y (March 11, 1886 - December 2, 1941); nom de guerre ÅšmigÅ‚y, TarÅ‚owski, Adam Zawisza) was a Polish politician, an officer of the Polish Army, painter and poet. ... Definition Withdrawing is the act of removing all or part of a military force from combat and moving to a safe location. ... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ...

Motto painted on a German Ju-52 transport plane: "Whether figures, gasoline, bombs or bread, we bring Poland death."
Motto painted on a German Ju-52 transport plane: "Whether figures, gasoline, bombs or bread, we bring Poland death."

Meanwhile, the Germans were tightening their encirclement of the Polish forces west of the Vistula (in the Łódź area and, still farther west, around Poznań) and also penetrating deeply into eastern Poland. Warsaw, under heavy aerial bombardment since the first hours of the war, was attacked on 9 September and was put under siege on September 13. Around that time, advanced German forces had also reached the city of Lwów, a major metropolis of eastern Poland. 1150 German aircraft bombed Warsaw on September 24. This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... A motto is a phrase or a short list of words meant to formally describe the general motivation or intention of a social group or organization. ... The Junkers Ju 52 nicknamed Tante Ju (Auntie Ju) and Iron Annie was a civilian airliner and military transport aircraft and bomber manufactured between 1932 and 1945 by Junkers. ... PoznaÅ„ (in Polish ; full official name: The Capital City of PoznaÅ„, Latin: Posnania, German: Posen, Yiddish: פּױזן Poyzn) is a city in west-central Poland with over 578,900 inhabitants (2002). ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... September 9 is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years). ... Battle of Warsaw Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date 8 to September 28, 1939 Place Warsaw, Poland Result Polish defeat The 1939 Battle of Warsaw was fought between the Polish Warsaw Army (Armia Warszawa) garrisoned and entrenched in the capital of Poland (Warsaw) and the German Army. ... September 13 is the 256th day of the year (257th in leap years). ... Motto: Semper fidelis Oblast Lviv Oblast Municipal government City council (Львівська міська рада) Mayor City chairman Lyubomyr Bunyak Area 171,01 km² Population  - city  - urban  - density 808,900 ? 4786/km² Founded City rights 13th century 1353 Latitude Longitude 49°51′ N 24°01′ E Area code +0322 Car plates  ? Twin towns Corning, Freiburg... A metropolis (in Greek metera = mother and polis = city/town) is a major city (nowadays in most cases with a population of at least one million), which is a significant economical, political and cultural center for some country or region, and usually an important hub for international connections and communications. ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... September 24 is the 267th day of the year (268th in leap years). ...


The largest battle during this campaign, the Battle of Bzura, took place near the Bzura river west of Warsaw and lasted from 9 September to 18 September. Polish armies Poznań and Pomorze, retreating from the border area of the Polish Corridor, attacked the flank of the advancing German 8th army, but the counterattack failed after initial success. After the defeat, Poland lost its ability to take the initiative and counterattack on a large scale. Battle of Bzura (also known as Battle of Kutno) took place during the Second World War, Polish September Campaign between 9 September 1939 and 19 September1, 1939 and was fought between Polish and German Nazi forces. ... Bzura is a river in central Poland, a tributary of the Vistula river (in Wyszogrod), with a length of 166 kilometres (25th longest) and the basin area of 7,788 sq. ... September 9 is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years). ... September 18 is the 261st day of the year (262nd in leap years). ...


The Polish government (of president Ignacy Mościcki) and the high command (of Marshal Edward Rydz-Śmigły) left Warsaw in the first days of the campaign and headed southeast, arriving in Brześć on 6 September. General Rydz-Śmigły ordered the Polish forces to retreat in the same direction, behind the Vistula and San rivers, beginning the preparations for the long defence of the Romanian bridgehead area. Office Term of office from June 1, 1926, until September 30, 1939 Profession Professor of chemistry Political party none (until 1892, Proletariat) Spouse Maria, née DobrzaÅ„ska Date of birth December 1, 1867 Place of birth Mierzanów, Poland Date of death October 2, 1946 Place of death Versoix... Marshal of Poland (Marszałek Polski) is the highest rank in the Polish Army. ... Central Square of Brest Brest (Belarusian: ; Russian: ; Polish: ; also known as BieraÅ›cie or BiareÅ›cie (Belarusian: respectfully) formerly Brest-on-the-Bug and Brest-Litovsk is a city (population 290,000 in 2004) in Belarus close to the Polish border where the Western Bug and Mukhavets Rivers meet. ... This article is about the day of the year. ... The Vistula (Polish: WisÅ‚a) is the longest river in Poland. ... San or SAN can refer to any of the following: Look up San in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Look up san in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ...


Phase 2: Soviet aggression

Situation after September 14, 1939.
Situation after September 14, 1939.
"The stab in the back": Dziennik Chicagowski [Chicago Daily] – The Polish Daily News, September 19, 1939.
"The stab in the back": Dziennik Chicagowski [Chicago Daily] – The Polish Daily News, September 19, 1939.

From the beginning of the Polish campaign German government repeatedly asked Stalin and Molotov to act upon the August agreement and attack Poland from the east. Worried by an unexpectedly rapid German advance and eager to grab their allotted share of the country, the Soviet Union attacked Poland on September 17. It was agreed that the USSR relinquishes its interest in the territories between the new border and Warsaw in exchage for inclusion of Lithuania in the Soviet "zone of interest." By 17 September 1939 the Polish defense was already broken and their only hope was to retreat and reorganize along the Romanian Bridgehead. However, these plans were rendered obsolete nearly overnight, when the over 800,000 strong Soviet Union Red Army attacked and created the Belarusian and Ukrainian fronts after invading the eastern regions of Poland. This was in violation of the Riga Peace Treaty, the Soviet-Polish Non-Aggression Pact and other international treaties, both bilateral and multilateral[6]. Soviet diplomacy - and later, Soviet propaganda - claimed that they were "protecting the Ukrainian and Belarusian minorities inhabiting Poland in view of Polish imminent collapse." However, in reality, the Soviets were acting in co-operation with the Nazis, [3] [4], carving Europe into Nazi and Soviet spheres of influence as specified in the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 1898 KB)http://www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1256x956, 1898 KB)http://www. ... September 14 is the 257th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (258th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... September 19 is the 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ... The short forms Red Army and RKKA refer to the Workers and Peasants Red Army, (in Russian: Рабоче-Крестьянская Красная Армия - Raboche-Krestyanskaya Krasnaya Armiya), the armed forces first organized by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War in 1918. ... A Front was a major military organization in the Soviet Army, roughly equivalent to an army or army group in British or American miltary terminology. ... The name Kresy (Polish for borderlands, or more correctly Kresy Wschodnie, Eastern Borderlands) is used by Poles, mostly in historical context, to refer to the eastern part of Poland before the II World War. ... The Peace of Riga signed on 18th March 1921 between Poland and Soviet Russia ended the Polish-Bolshevik War. ... The Soviet-Polish Non-Aggression Pact (Polish: , Russian: ) was an international treaty of non-aggression signed in 1932 by representatives of Poland and the USSR. The pact was unilaterally broken by the Soviet Union on September 17, 1939, during the Nazi and Soviet invasion of Poland. ... The United Nations, with its headquarters in New York City, is the largest international diplomatic organization. ... The definition of a minority group can vary, depending on specific context, but generally refers to either a sociological sub-group that does not form either a majority or a plurality of the total population, or a group that, while not necessarily a numerical minority, is disadvantaged or otherwise has... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Nazism. ... A sphere of influence (SOI) is an area or region over which an organization or state exerts some kind of indirect cultural, economic, military or political domination. ... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ...


Polish border defence forces in the east, known as the Korpus Ochrony Pogranicza, consisted of about 25 battalions. Edward Rydz-Śmigły ordered them to fall back and not engage the Soviets. This, however, did not prevent some clashes and small battles, like the Battle of Grodno, as soldiers and local population attempted to defend the city. The Soviets murdered a number of Poles, including prisoners-of-war like General Józef Olszyna-Wilczyński. Ukrainians rose against the Poles, and communist partisans organised local revolts, e.g. in Skidel, robbing and murdering Poles. Those movements were quickly disciplined by the NKVD. Border Defence Corps (Polish Korpus Ochrony Pogranicza, KOP) was a Polish military unit created in 1924 for defence of the eastern border against armed Soviet raids and local bandits. ... The Battle of Grodno took place between September 21 and September 24, 1939, during the Polish Defensive War. ... Geneva Convention definition A prisoner of war (POW) is a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine who is imprisoned by an enemy power during or immediately after an armed conflict. ... Józef Konstanty Olszyna-WilczyÅ„ski (1890-1939) was a Polish general and one of the high-ranking commanders of the Polish Army. ... The NKVD (Narodnyi Komissariat Vnutrennikh Del )(Russian: НКВД, Народный комиссариат внутренних дел) or Peoples Commisariat for Internal Affairs was a government department which handled a number of the Soviet Unions affairs of state. ...


The Soviet invasion was one of the decisive factors that convinced the Polish government that the war in Poland was lost. Prior to the Soviet attack from the East, the Polish military's fall-back plan had called for long-term defence against Germany in the southern-eastern part of Poland, while awaiting relief from a Western Allies attack on Germany's western border. However, the Polish government refused to surrender or negotiate a peace with Germany and ordered all units to evacuate Poland and reorganize in France. The Western Allies were the democracies and their colonial peoples, within the broader coalition of Allies during World War II. The term is generally understood to refer to the countries of the Commonwealth of Nations (from 1939), exiled forces from Occupied Europe (from 1940), the United States (from 1941), and...

German bombers over Warsaw.
German bombers over Warsaw.
Near the end: TIME magazine, September 25, 1939.
Near the end: TIME magazine, September 25, 1939.

Meanwhile, Polish forces tried to move towards the Romanian bridgehead area, still actively resisting the German invasion. From 17 September to 20 September, the Polish Armies Kraków and Lublin were crippled at the Battle of Tomaszów Lubelski, the second largest battle of the campaign. The city of Lwów capitulated on 22 September in a turn of events illustrative of the bizarre turn due to Soviet intervention; the city had been attacked by the Germans over a week earlier and in the middle of the siege, the German troops handed operations over to their Soviet allies. Despite a series of intensifying German attacks, Warsaw, defended by quickly reorganised retreating units, civilian volunteers and militia, held out until its capitulation on 28 September. The Modlin Fortress north of Warsaw capitulated on 29 September after an intense 16-day battle. Some isolated Polish garrisons managed to hold their positions long after being surrounded by German forces. Westerplatte enclave's tiny garrison capitulated on 7 September, and Oksywie garrison held until 19 September. Despite a Polish victory at the battle of Szack, after which the Soviets executed all the NCOs and officers they had managed to capture, the Red Army reached the line of rivers Narew, Western Bug, Vistula and San by September 28, in many cases meeting German units advancing from the other side. Polish defenders on the Hel peninsula on the shore of the Baltic Sea held out until 2 October. The last operational unit of the Polish Army, General Franciszek Kleeberg's Samodzielna Grupa Operacyjna "Polesie", capitulated after the 4-day Battle of Kock near Lublin on 6 October, marking the end of the September Campaign. German bombers over Warsaw during the Siege of Warsaw (1939), author unknown, taken from the German Wehrmacht propaganda newspaper Signal, This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... German bombers over Warsaw during the Siege of Warsaw (1939), author unknown, taken from the German Wehrmacht propaganda newspaper Signal, This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Download high resolution version (980x1102, 509 KB)Map of Polish September Campaign entitled Poland Collapse from The Time newspaper 1939 September 25. ... Download high resolution version (980x1102, 509 KB)Map of Polish September Campaign entitled Poland Collapse from The Time newspaper 1939 September 25. ... (Clockwise from upper left) Notable Time magazine covers from the dates May 7, 1945; July 25, 1969; December 31, 1999; September 14, 2001; and April 21, 2003. ... September 25 is the 268th day of the year (269th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... September 17 is the 260th day of the year (261st in leap years). ... September 20 is the 263rd day of the year (264th in leap years). ... Battle of Tomaszów Lubelski took place from 17th September to 26th September 1939 near the town of Tomaszów Lubelski. ... September 22 is the 265th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (266th in leap years). ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ... September 28 is the 271st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (272nd in leap years). ... Modlin Fortress (Polish Twierdza Modlin) is one of the biggest 19th century fortresses in Poland. ... September 29 is the 272nd day of the year (273rd in leap years). ... Battle of Modlin Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 13 to September 29, 1939 Place Modlin village, Modlin Fortress Result Polish capitulation During the Polish September Campaign at the beginning of the Second World War, Modlin Fortress was a headquarters of the Modlin Army until it retreated eastwards. ... Garrison House, built 1675, Dover, NH, USA In the military, garrison is the collective term for the body of troops stationed in a particular location, originally to guard it, but now often simply using it as a home base. ... German battleship Schleswig-Holstein shelling Polish Westerplatte, 1 September 1939 Westerplatte is a peninsula in GdaÅ„sk, Poland, at an estuary of the Dead Vistula (one of the Vistula delta estuaries), in the GdaÅ„sk harbour channel. ... September 7 is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years). ... Oksywie in early 20th century Oksywie (German: ) is a neighbourhood of the city of Gdynia. ... September 19 is the 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years). ... Battle of Szack Conflict Polish Defence War of 1939 Date September 28, 1939 Place Szack, Poland Result Polish victory Battle of Szack was one of the major battles between the Polish Army and the Red Army fought during the Polish Defence War of 1939. ... A non-commissioned officer (sometimes noncommissioned officer), also known as an NCO or noncom, is a non-commissioned member of an armed force who has been given authority by a commissioned officer. ... Narew (Belarusian: На́раў) is a river in western Belarus and north-eastern Poland, a tributary of the Vistula river. ... Bug at Wlodawa One of the two rivers called Bug (pronounced Boog), the Western Bug, or Buh (Belarusian: Захо́дні Буг; Russian: За́падный Буг; Ukrainian: Західний Буг, Zakhidnyi Buh), flows from central Ukraine to the west, forming part of the boundary between that nation and Poland, passes along the Polish-Belarusian... The Vistula (Polish: WisÅ‚a) is the longest river in Poland. ... San or SAN can refer to any of the following: Look up San in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Look up san in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... September 28 is the 271st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (272nd in leap years). ... Hel Peninsula as seen from Landsat satellite in 2000 Hel Peninsula (Polish Mierzeja Helska) is a 35 km long and sand-bar peninsula in northern Poland separating the Bay of Puck from the open Baltic Sea. ... The Baltic Sea is located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. ... October 2 is the 275th day (276th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 90 days remaining. ... Franciszek Kleeberg (1888-1941) was a Polish general. ... Independent Operational Group Polesie (Samodzielna Grupa Operacyjna Polesie, SGO Polesie) was one of the Polish Army Corps that took part in the Polish Defence War of 1939. ... The Battle of Kock was the final battle of the Polish September Campaign at the beginning of World War II. It took place from October 2nd through October 5th, 1939, near the town of Kock, Poland. ... For other uses, see Lublin (disambiguation). ... October 6 is the 279th day of the year (280th in leap years). ...


Civilian losses

Execution of some 300 Polish POWs at Ciepielów by the German 15th Motorized Regiment.
Execution of some 300 Polish POWs at Ciepielów by the German 15th Motorized Regiment.

The Polish September Campaign was an instance of total war that would be repeated continuously throughout World War II. Consequently, civilian casualties were high during and after combat. From the start of the campaign, the Luftwaffe attacked civilian targets and columns of refugees along the roads to wreak havoc, disrupt communications and target Polish morale. The first such attack occurred at 4 AM on September 1 during the Bombing of Wieluń, in which nearly 1200 civilians were killed by a Luftwaffe air raid on Wieluń. Finally, apart from the victims of the battles, the German forces (both SS and the regular Wehrmacht) are credited with the mass murder of several thousands of Polish POWs and civilians. Also, during a pre-planned Operation Tannenberg, nearly 20,000 Poles were shot in 760 mass execution sites by special units, the Einsatzgruppen, in addition to regular Wehrmacht, SS and Selbstschutz. Image File history File links Mass grave of 300 Polish POWs murdered near Ciepielów by the German 15th Motorized Infantry Regiment of German 29th Motorized Division Commanded by General Joachim Lemelsen File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this... Image File history File links Mass grave of 300 Polish POWs murdered near Ciepielów by the German 15th Motorized Infantry Regiment of German 29th Motorized Division Commanded by General Joachim Lemelsen File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this... Polish POWs murdered in Ciepielów Ciepielów is a village in Poland, in southern part of the Mazovian Voivodship. ... This article is about Total War. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafÉ™]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... The bombing of WieluÅ„ in World War II refers to the terror bombing of the Polish town of WieluÅ„ by the German Luftwaffe. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafÉ™]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... SS or ss or Ss may be: The Schutzstaffel, a Nazi paramilitary force Steamship (SS) (ship prefix) The United States Secret Service A submarine not powered by nuclear energy (SS) (United States Navy designator), see SSN A Soviet/Russian surface-to-surface missile, as listed by NATO reporting name Shortstop... This article deals with mass killings which are not considered genocide. ... Geneva Convention definition A prisoner of war (POW) is a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine who is imprisoned by an enemy power during or immediately after an armed conflict. ... Operation Tannenberg was codename for one of extermination actions directed at Polish intelligentsia during World War II. Nazis prepared lists, so called Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen, which listed more than 60,000 Polish activists, intelligentsia, actors, former officers, etc. ... A member of Einsatzgruppe D is just about to execute Jewish man kneeling before a filled mass grave in Vinnitsa, Ukraine, in 1942. ... Selbstschutz (German: ) was a name used by a number of paramilitary organisations created out of ethnic Germans in Central Europe. ...


In a particular instance on September 3, 1939, known as "Bromberg Bloody Sunday," Polish Army units withdrawing through the city of Bromberg heard shots, supposedly from German fifth columnists believed to be firing atop churches and rooftops at soldiers and civilians. The Polish soldiers and civilians lynched many of the alleged German saboteurs. Between 223 and 358 ethnic Germans were killed in Bromberg alone and more were killed in the surrounding villages. The exact number of the victims is still subject to dispute. In reprisal, German forces executed some 3,000 Poles and by the year's end sent an additional 13,000 to the Stutthof concentration camp. September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ... Polish Army (Polish Wojsko Polskie) is the name applied to the military forces of Poland. ... Bydgoszcz (Polish pronunciation: (?), German: Bromberg, Latin: Bydgostia) is a city in northern Poland, on the Brda and Vistula rivers, with a population of 369,151 (2004). ... Fifth Column, from left to right: Caroline Azar, G.B. Jones, Beverly Breckenridge. ... Lynch may be: One of the fourteen tribes of Galway Colonel Charles Lynch, an officer on the Patriot side of the American Revolutionary War David Lynch, American film director David Lynch (musician), American Jazz musician Evanna Lynch, Irish actress Gerard Lynch, United States Federal Court judge Jessica Lynch (fl. ... Stutthof (Sztutowo) was the first concentration camp built by the German Nazi regime outside of Germany, on September 2, 1939. ...


Altogether, the civilian losses of Polish population amounted to 150,000 while German civilian losses amounted to roughly 5,000.


Aftermath

October 5, 1939: Wehrmacht parade down Warsaw's Aleje Ujazdowskie, watched by Adolf Hitler and other German officials. During the parade, the city's population were ordered to stay home and keep their windows shut. To deter assassination attempts, the Germans held 412 civilians hostage. These included Warsaw University's most prominent professors as well as civilian city authorities, including Mayor Stefan Starzyński.
October 5, 1939: Wehrmacht parade down Warsaw's Aleje Ujazdowskie, watched by Adolf Hitler and other German officials. During the parade, the city's population were ordered to stay home and keep their windows shut. To deter assassination attempts, the Germans held 412 civilians hostage. These included Warsaw University's most prominent professors as well as civilian city authorities, including Mayor Stefan Starzyński.

At the end of the September Campaign, Poland was divided among Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, Lithuania and Slovakia. Nazi Germany annexed parts of Poland, while the rest was governed by the so-called General Government. On September 28, another secret German-Soviet protocol modified the arrangements of August: all Lithuania was to be a Soviet sphere of influence, not a German one; but the dividing line in Poland was moved in Germany's favor, to the Bug River. At Brest-Litovsk, Soviet and German commanders held a joint victory parade before German forces withdrew westward behind a new demarcation line[7]. Download high resolution version (1285x812, 152 KB)German troops parade through Warsaw, Poland on October 5, 1939. ... Download high resolution version (1285x812, 152 KB)German troops parade through Warsaw, Poland on October 5, 1939. ... October 5 is the 278th day of the year (279th in Leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... German cavalry and motorized units entering Poland from East Prussia during the Polish Campaign of 1939 Wehrmacht (Defence force) was the name of the armed forces of Germany from 1935 to 1945. ... Warsaw (Polish: , (?), in full The Capital City of Warsaw, Polish: Miasto StoÅ‚eczne Warszawa) is the capital of Poland and its largest city. ... Hitler redirects here. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Warsaw University (Polish Uniwersytet Warszawski) - the biggest and one of the most prestigious universities in Poland. ... Stefan StarzyÅ„ski (January 19, 1893 - c. ... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... After invading Poland in 1939, Germany decided to annex not only all the lands it was forced to return to Poland in 1919–1922, under the Treaty of Versailles (including the Polish Corridor, West Prussia, the Province of Posen), but also other territories. ... The General Government (in full General government for the occupied Polish areas, in German Generalgouvernement für die besetzten polnischen Gebiete) was the name given by Germany to the governing authority in Poland after its occupation by the Wehrmacht in September and October 1939. ... September 28 is the 271st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (272nd in leap years). ... In international law and international relations, a protocol is a treaty or international agreement that supplements a previous treaty or international agreement. ... A sphere of influence (SOI) is an area or region over which an organization or state exerts some kind of indirect cultural, economic, military or political domination. ... For a city in France, see Brest, France. ... Victory Parade on Red Square, Moscow on June 24, 1945. ... Look up demarcation in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


About 65,000 Polish troops were killed in the fighting, with 420,000 others being captured by the Germans and 240,000 more by the Soviets (grand total 680,000 prisoner). Up to 120,000 Polish troops escaped to neutral Romania (through the Romanian Bridgehead) and Hungary, and another 20,000 escaped to Latvia and Lithuania, with the majority eventually making their way to France or Britain. Most of the Polish Navy succeeded in evacuating to Britain as well. German personnel losses were less then their enemies (~16,000 KIA), but the loss of approximately 30% of armored vehicles during the campaign was one of the reasons the plans for an immediate attack west were discarded. [citation needed] A neutral country takes no side in a war between other parties, and in return hopes to avoid being attacked by either of them. ... The Romanian Bridgehead (Polish Przedmoście rumuńskie) was an area in South-Eastern Poland, nowadays located in Ukraine. ... Flag of the Polish Navy Polish Navy Ensign The Polish Navy (Marynarka Wojenna RP, MW RP) is the branch of Polands armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... Militaries use the term killed in action (KIA) as a casualty classification. ...

Soviet (left) and German officers meet after the Soviets' invasion of Poland.
Soviet (left) and German officers meet after the Soviets' invasion of Poland.

Neither side—Germany, the Western Allies or the Soviet Union—expected that the German invasion of Poland would lead to the war that would surpass World War I in its scale and cost. It would be months before Hitler would see the futility of his peace negotiation attempts with Great Britain and France, but the culmination of combined European and Pacific conflicts would result in what was truly a "world war". Thus, what was not visible to most politicians and generals in 1939 is clear from the historical perspective: The Polish September Campaign marked the beginning of the Second World War in Europe, which combined with the Japanese invasion of China in 1937 and the Pacific War in 1941 would form the conflict known as World War II. This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini The European Theatre was an area of heavy fighting from 1939 to 1945 during World War II. // Preceding events Main articles: Events preceding World War II in Europe, Causes of World War II After Germany was defeated in World War I, the Treaty of Versailles... Combatants National Revolutionary Army, Republic of China Imperial Japanese Army, Empire of Japan Commanders Chiang Kai-shek, Mao Zedong, Yan Xishan, Feng Yuxiang, Zhu De, He Yingqin Tojo Hideki, Matsui Iwane, Minami Jiro, Kesago Nakajima, Toshizo Nishio, Neiji Okamura. ... 1937 (MCMXXXVII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... US landings in the Pacific, 1942–1945 The Pacific War was the part of World War II that occurred in the Pacific Ocean, its islands, and in East Asia, 1937 to 1945. ... For the movie, see 1941 (film) 1941 (MCMXLI) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1941 calendar). ... Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II...


The invasion of Poland led to Britain and France declaring war on Germany on September 3; however, they did little to affect the outcome of the September Campaign. This lack of direct help during September 1939 led many Poles to believe that they had been betrayed by their Western allies. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a declaration of war against Japan on December 8, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. ... September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... Western betrayal is a popular term in several Central European nations (including Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, the Baltic States, and other Eastern European countries) which refers to the foreign policy of several Western countries during the period from the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 through World War II...

Survivor of bombing of Warsaw.
Survivor of bombing of Warsaw.

On May 23 1939 Adolf Hitler explained to his officers that the object of the agression was not Danzig, but the need to obtain German Lebensraumand details of this concept would be later formulated in the infamous Generalplan Ost. [5] [6] The blitzkrieg decimated urban residential areas, civilians soon became indistinguishable from combatants and the forthcoming German occupation (General Government, Reichsgau Wartheland) was one of the most brutal episodes of World War II, resulting in over 6 million Polish deaths (over 20% of the country's total population), including the mass murder of 3 million Polish Jews in extermination camps like Auschwitz. Red Army occupied the polish territories with mostly Ukrainian and Belorussian population. Soviets, met at the beginning as liberators by local people, shortly after started to introduce communist ideology in the arear. Badly adapted by the population, this led to a powefull antisoviet resistance in the West Ukraine. Soviet occupation between 1939 and 1941 resulted in the death or deportation of least 1.8 million former Polish citizens, when all who were deemed dangerous to the communist regime were subject to sovietization, forced resettlement, imprisonment in labour camps (the Gulags) or simply murdered, like the Polish officers in the Katyn massacre. Part of this causalities were due to the attacts of the Ukrainian nationalists on the polish villages in the West Ukraine, where the vengeance feelling were particularly strong. Soviet atrocities commenced again after Poland was "liberated" by the Red Army in 1944, with events like the persecution of the Home Army soldiers and execution of its leaders (Trial of the Sixteen). Survivor of German aerial bombardment of Warsaw This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Survivor of German aerial bombardment of Warsaw This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... The Bombing of Warsaw in World War II refers both to the terror bombing campaign on Warsaw by Luftwaffe during the September Campaign (siege of Warsaw and to the German bombing raids during the Warsaw Uprising. ... Lebensraum, the German term for habitat (used both in ecological and sociological contexts; literally, living space) is used in English to refer to a motivation for Nazi Germanys expansionist policies, to provide extra space for the growth of the German population. ... Generalplan Ost (GPO) was a Nazi plan to realize Hitlers new order of ethnographical relations in the territories occupied in Eastern Europe during World War II. It was prepared in 1941 and confirmed in 1942. ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... An urban area is a term used to define an area where there is an increased density of human-created structures in comparison to the areas surrounding it. ... After invading Poland in 1939, Germany decided to annex not only all the lands it was forced to return to Poland in 1919–1922, under the Treaty of Versailles (including the Polish Corridor, West Prussia, the Province of Posen), but also other territories. ... The General Government (in full General government for the occupied Polish areas, in German Generalgouvernement für die besetzten polnischen Gebiete) was the name given by Germany to the governing authority in Poland after its occupation by the Wehrmacht in September and October 1939. ... Reichsgau Wartheland (initially Reichsgau Posen) was the name given by Nazis to the largest subdivision of the territory of Greater Poland which was directly incorporated into the German Reich after defeating the Polish army in 1939. ... Majdanek - crematorium Extermination camp (German Vernichtungslager) was the term applied to a group of death camps set up by Nazi Germany during World War II for the express purpose of killing the Jews of Europe, although members of some other groups whom the Nazis wished to exterminate, such as Roma... Auschwitz, in English, commonly refers to the Auschwitz concentration camp complex built near the town of Oświęcim, by Nazi Germany during World War II. Rarely, it may refer to the Polish town of Oświęcim (called by the Germans Auschwitz) itself. ... Under the terms of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, adjusted by agreement on 28 September 1939, the Soviet Union annexed all Polish territory east of the line of the rivers Pisa, Narew, Western Bug, and San, except for Wilno country with its capital Wilno (Vilnius), which was given to Lithuania, and... Deportation is the expelling of someone from a country. ... Communism - Wikipedia /**/ @import /w/skins-1. ... This article is about the political term. ... A labor camp is a simplified detention facility where inmates are engaged in forced labor. ... Gulag ( , Russian: ) is an acronym for Главное Управление Исправительно—Трудовых Лагерей и колоний, Glavnoye Upravleniye Ispravitelno-trudovykh Lagerey i kolonii, The Chief Directorate [or Administration] of Corrective Labour Camps and Colonies of the NKVD. Anne Applebaum, in her book Gulag: A History, explains: Literally, the word GULAG is an acronym, meaning Glavnoe Upravlenie Lagerei, or Main Camp... Mass graves at Katyn war cemetery. ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday (the link is to a full 1944 calendar). ... For other meanings of Home Army see: Home Army (disambiguation) The Armia Krajowa or AK (Home Army) functioned as the pre-eminent underground military organization in German-occupied Poland, which functioned in all areas of the country from September 1939 until its disbanding in January 1945. ... The term sometimes is also applied to First Moscow Trial during the Great Purges in USSR The Trial of the Sixteen (Polish: Proces szesnastu) was a staged trial of 16 leaders of the Polish Secret State held by the Soviet Union in Moscow in 1945. ...


Myths

Graves of Polish soldiers at Powązki Cemetery, Warsaw.

There are several common misconceptions regarding the Polish September Campaign: Download high resolution version (1080x1440, 571 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1080x1440, 571 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... PowÄ…zki Cemetery (Polish Cmentarz PowÄ…zkowski) is the oldest and most famous cemetery in Warsaw, Poland, which is situated in the western part of the city. ...

  • The Polish military was so backward they fought tanks with cavalry: Although Poland had 11 cavalry brigades and its doctrine emphasized cavalry units as elite units, other armies of that time (including German and Soviet) also fielded and extensively used horse cavalry units. Polish cavalry (equipped with modern small arms and light artillery like the highly effective Bofors 37 mm antitank gun) never charged German tanks or entrenched infantry or artillery directly but usually acted as mobile infantry (like dragoons) and reconnaissance units and executed cavalry charges only in rare situations, against enemy infantry. The article about the Battle of Krojanty (when Polish cavalry were fired on by hidden tanks, rather than charging them) describes how this myth originated.
  • The Polish air force was destroyed on the ground in the first days of the war: The Polish Air Force, though numerically inferior, was not destroyed on the ground because combat units had been moved from air bases to small camouflaged airfields shortly before the war. Only a number of trainers and auxiliary aircraft were destroyed on the ground on airfields. The Polish Air Force remained active in the first two weeks of the campaign, causing serious damage to the Luftwaffe. Many skilled Polish pilots escaped afterwards to the United Kingdom and were deployed by the RAF during the Battle of Britain. Fighting from British bases, Polish pilots were also, on average, the most successful in shooting down German planes [8].
  • Poland offered little resistance and surrendered quickly: It should be noted that the September Campaign lasted only about one week less than the Battle of France in 1940, even though the Anglo-French allied forces were much closer to parity with the Germans in numerical strength and equipment[9]. Poland also never officially surrendered to the Germans.
  • The German Army used astonishing new concepts of warfare and used new technology daringly: The myth of Blitzkrieg has been dispelled by some authors, notably Matthew Cooper. Cooper writes (in The German Army 1939–1945: Its Political and Military Failure): "Throughout [the Polish Campaign], the employment of the mechanised units revealed the idea that they were intended solely to ease the advance and to support the activities of the infantry…. Thus, any strategic exploitation of the armoured idea was still-born. The paralysis of command and the breakdown of morale were not made the ultimate aim of the … German ground and air forces, and were only incidental by-products of the traditional manoeuvers of rapid encirclement and of the supporting activities of the flying artillery of the Luftwaffe, both of which had has their purpose the physical destruction of the enemy troops. Such was the Vernichtungsgedanke of the Polish campaign." Vernichtungsgedanke was a strategy dating back to Frederick the Great, and was applied in the Polish Campaign little changed from the French campaigns in 1870 or 1914. The use of tanks "left much to be desired...Fear of enemy action against the flanks of the advance, fear which was to prove so disastrous to German prospects in the west in 1940 and in the Soviet Union in 1941, was present from the beginning of the war." Many early postwar histories, such as Barrie Pitt's in The Second World War (BPC Publishing 1966), incorrectly attribute German victory to "enormous development in military technique which occurred between 1918 and 1940", incorrectly citing that "Germany, who translated (British inter-war) theories into action… called the result Blitzkrieg." John Ellis, writing in Brute Force (Viking Penguin, 1990) asserted that "…there is considerable justice in Matthew Cooper's assertion that the panzer divisions were not given the kind of strategic (emphasis in original) mission that was to characterise authentic armoured blitzkrieg, and were almost always closely subordinated to the various mass infantry armies." Zaloga and Madej, in The Polish Campaign 1939 (Hippocrene Books, 1985), also address the subject of mythical interpretations of Blitzkrieg and the importance of other arms in the campaign. "Whilst Western accounts of the September campaign have stressed the shock value of the panzers and Stuka attacks, they have tended to underestimate the punishing effect of German artillery (emphasis added) on Polish units. Mobile and available in significant quantity, artillery shattered as many units as any other branch of the Wehrmacht."

Kircholm, a 1925 painting by Wojciech Kossak. ... Brigade is a term from military science which refers to military echelon under a division, above a regiment where that exists as such, nowadays often a group of several battalions (typically two to four), and directly attached supporting units (normally including at least an artillery battery and additional logistic support). ... Military doctrine is a level of military planning between national strategy and unit-level tactics, techniques, and procedures. ... Look up elite, élite in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Volunteer Representative Squadron of City of Poznan in uniforms of 15th Poznan Uhlans Regiment Polish Cavalry (Polish kawaleria) can trace its origins back to the days of Mediæval mounted knights. ... Mobile infantry is one of several military terms usually referring to infantry units equipped with vehicles. ... A light dragoon from the American Revolution French dragoon, 1745. ... Mixed reconnaissance patrol of the Polish Home Army and the Soviet Red Army during Operation Tempest, 1944 Reconnaissance is the military term for the active gathering of information about an enemy, or other conditions, by physical observation. ... The Battle of Krojanty was part of the Polish September Campaign of the Second World War. ... Flag of the Polish Air Force Polish Air Force (SiÅ‚y Powietrzne Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, SiÅ‚y Powietrzne RP). ... A trainer is a training aircraft used to develop piloting, navigational or weapon-aiming skills in flight crew. ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafÉ™]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... It has been suggested that Pilot (spaceflight) be merged into this article or section. ... The Royal Air Force (often abbreviated to RAF) is the air force branch of the British Armed Forces. ... Combatants United Kingdom Germany Italy Commanders Hugh Dowding Hermann Göring Albert Kesselring Strength 700 fighters 1,260 bombers, 316 dive-bombers, 1,089 fighters Casualties 1,547 aircraft, 27,450 civilian dead, 32,138 wounded 2,698 aircraft One of the major campaigns of the early part of World... Combatants Allies (France, Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg) Germany, Italy Commanders Maurice Gamelin, Maxime Weygand (French) Lord Gort (British Expeditionary Force) Gerd von Rundstedt (Army Group A) Fedor von Bock (Army Group B) Wilhelm von Leeb (Army Group C) H.R.H. Umberto di Savoia (Army... 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1940 calendar). ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... The Deutsche Luftwaffe or (German: air force, literally Air Arm or Air Weapon, IPA: [luftvafÉ™]) is the commonly used term for the German air force. ... Vernichtungsgedanke, meaning the concept of annihilation in German, is a Prussian / German tactical doctrine, dating to Frederick the Great. ... Frederick the Great Frederick II of Prussia (Friedrich der Große, Frederick the Great, January 24, 1712 – August 17, 1786) was the Hohenzollern king of Prussia 1740–86. ... Combatants France Prussia allied with German states (later German Empire) Commanders Napoleon III Helmuth von Moltke Strength 500,000 550,000 Casualties 150,000 dead or wounded 284,000 captured 350,000 civilian [citation needed] 100,000 dead or wounded 200,000 civilian [citation needed] The Franco-Prussian War (July... Brute Force is a controversial book by historian John Ellis which proposes that the Allied Forces won World War II not by the skill of their leaders but by brute force. ...

See also

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:

Image File history File links Wikiquote-logo-en. ... Wikiquote logo Wikiquote is a sister project of Wikipedia, using the same MediaWiki software. ... The Armenian quote is a paragraph allegedly included in a speech by Adolf Hitler to Wehrmacht commanders at his Obersalzberg home on August 22, 1939, a week before the German invasion of Poland. ... The history of Poland from 1939 through 1945 encompasses the German invasion of Poland through to the end of World War II. On September 1, 1939, without formal declaration of war, Germany invaded Poland. ... The Oder-Neisse line (German: , Polish: ) is the border between Germany and Poland. ... The following is a standard order of battle of the Polish cavalry brigade in 1939. ... Poland: First to Fight (poster, 1939). ... September 1: World War II begins with the invasion of Poland by Germany. ... Western betrayal is a popular term in several Central European nations (including Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, the Baltic States, and other Eastern European countries) which refers to the foreign policy of several Western countries during the period from the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 through World War II... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... Vernichtungsgedanke, meaning the concept of annihilation in German, is a Prussian / German tactical doctrine, dating to Frederick the Great. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Wehrmacht. ... This article deals with the the treatment of Polish citizens by occupation forces during the Second World War (1939 - 1945). ...

Notes

  1. ^ Various sources contradict each other so the figures quoted above should only be taken as a rough indication of the strength estimate. The most common range differences and their brackets are: German personnel 1,500,000–1,800,000. This can be explained by inclusion (or lack of it) of Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine forces alongside Heer personnel. Luftwaffe: 1,300–3,000 planes, this can be explained by inclusion of all Luftwaffe planes (including transport, communications, training and anything not stationed at Polish front) on the larger end. Similarly Polish Air Force is given at 400–800; as with total Luftwaffe, the 800 number includes virtually 'anything that can fly'. Polish tanks: 100–880, 100 is the number of modern tanks, 880 number includes older IWWs tanks and tankettes. For all numbers, primary source is Encyklopedia PWN, article on 'KAMPANIA WRZEŚNIOWA 1939'
  2. ^ Various sources contradict each other so the figures quoted above should only be taken as a rough indication of losses. The most common range brackets for casualties are: Polish casualties—65,000 to 66,300 KIA, 134,000 WIA; German KIA—8,082 to 16,343, with MIA from 5,029 to 320, total KIA and WIA given at 45,000. The discrepancy in German casualties can be attributed to he fact that some German statistics still listed soldiers as missing decades after the war. Today the most common and accepted number for German KIA casualties is 16,343. Soviet losses are estimated at 737-1,475 killed and missing, and 1,859-2,383 wounded. The often cited figure of 420,000 Polish prisoners of war represents only those captured by the Germans, as Soviets captured about 250,000 Polish POWs themselves, making the total number of Polish POWs about 660,000–690,000. Equipment losses are given as 236 German tanks and approximately 1,000 other vehicles to 132 Polish tanks and 300 other vehicles, 107–141 German planes to 327 Polish planes (118 fighters) (Polish PWN Encyclopedia gives number of 700 planes lost), 1 German small minelayer to 1 Polish destroyer (ORP Wicher), 1 minelayer (ORP Gryf) and several support craft. Soviets lost approximately 42 tanks in combat while hundreds more suffered technical failures.
  3. ^ Baliszewski Dariusz Most honoru, Tygodnik "Wprost", Nr 1138 (19 September 2004)]
  4. ^ Michael Alfred Peszke, Polish Underground Army, the Western Allies, and the Failure of Strategic Unity in World War II, McFarland & Company, 2004, ISBN 078642009X, Google Print, p.2
  5. ^ Dariusz Baliszewski, Wojna sukcesów, Tygodnik "Wprost", Nr 1141 (10 October 2004)
  6. ^ Apart from the two pacts mentioned, the treaties violated by the Soviet Union were: the 1919 Covenant of the League of Nations (to which the USSR adhered in 1934), the Briand-Kellog Pact of 1928 and the 1933 London Convention on the Definition of Aggression; see for instance: (English) Tadeusz Piotrowski (1997). Poland's Holocaust: Ethnic Strife, Collaboration with Occupying Forces and Genocide.... McFarland & Company. ISBN 0786403713.
  7. ^ Fischer, Benjamin B., "The Katyn Controversy: Stalin's Killing Field", Studies in Intelligence, Winter 1999-2000.
  8. ^ No. 303 "Kościuszko" Polish Fighter Squadron formed from Polish pilots in the United Kingdom almost 2 months after the Battle of Britain begun is famous for achieving the highest number of enemy kills during the Battle of Britain of all fighter squadrons then in operation.
  9. ^ Polish to Germany forces in the September Campaign: 1 million soldiers 4,300 guns, 880 tanks, 435 aircraft to 1,8 million soldiers, 10,000 guns, 2,800 tanks, 3,000 aircraft. French and participating Allies to German forces in the Battle of France: 2,862,000 soldiers, 13,974 guns, 3,384 tanks, 3,099 aircraft 2 to 3,350,000 soldiers, 7,378 guns, 2,445 tanks, 5,446 aircraft.

Volumes 1 thru 11 Wielka Encyklopedia Powszechna PWN (Great Universal Encyclopedia) is the largest Polish encyclopedia ever written. ... ORP Wicher was a name of two destroyers of the Polish Navy: ORP Wicher commissioned in 1930 and sunk during the Polish Defence War of 1939 ORP Wicher commissioned from the Soviet Union in 1958 and scrapped in 1974 This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other... ORP Gryf is the name of Polish Navy warships. ... September 19 is the 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years). ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Michael Alfred Peszke (born 1932, Dęblin, Poland) is a Polish-American psychiatrist and historian of the Polish Armed Forces in World War II. After the outbreak of World War II and the Soviet invasion of eastern Poland, Peszke, his mother Eugenia Halina Grębocka Peszke, and his father Alfred Bartłomiej Peszke... Wprost cover (May 22, 2005) Wprost (Outright) is a weekly newsmagazine in Poland, founded on December 5, 1982 as a regional magazine in Greater Poland, since 1989 it is distributed country-wide. ... October 10 is the 283rd day of the year (284th in Leap years). ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... ... The Kellogg-Briand Pact, also known as the Pact of Paris, after the city where it was signed on August 27, 1928, is an international treaty providing for the renunciation of war as an instrument of national policy. ... The Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter, commonly called the London Convention or LC 72, covers the deliberate disposal at sea of wastes or other matter from vessels, aircraft, and platforms. ... Tadeusz Piotrowski can refer to: Tadeusz Piotrowski (mountaineer). ... Benjamin B. Fischer has worked for the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for nearly 30 years, and has been headquartered at its Center for the Study of Intelligence, History Staff, in recent years. ... No. ... Combatants United Kingdom Germany Italy Commanders Hugh Dowding Hermann Göring Albert Kesselring Strength 700 fighters 1,260 bombers, 316 dive-bombers, 1,089 fighters Casualties 1,547 aircraft, 27,450 civilian dead, 32,138 wounded 2,698 aircraft One of the major campaigns of the early part of World...

References

General
  • Cooper, Matthew The German Army 1939-1945: Its Political and Military Failure. Stein and Day, Briarcliff Manor, NY, 19781 (ISBN 0812824687)
  • Baliszewski Dariusz, Wojna sukcesów, Tygodnik "Wprost", Nr 1141 (10 October 2004), Polish, retrieved on 24 March 2005
  • Dariusz Baliszewski Most honoru, Tygodnik "Wprost", Nr 1138 (19 September 2004)], Polish, retrieved on 24 March 2005
  • Chodakiewicz, Marek Jan. Between Nazis and Soviets: Occupation Politics in Poland, 1939-1947. Lexington Books, 2004 (ISBN 0739104845).
  • Ellis, John. Brute Force: Allied Strategy and Tactics in the Second World War. Viking Adult, 1st American ed edition, 1999. (ISBN 0670807737)
  • Fischer, Benjamin B., "The Katyn Controversy: Stalin's Killing Field", Studies in Intelligence, Winter 1999-2000, last accessed on 10 December, 2005
  • Gross, Jan T. Revolution from Abroad: The Soviet Conquest of Poland's Western Ukraine and Western Belorussia. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2002 (ISBN 0691096031).
  • Kennedy, Robert M. The German Campaign in Poland (1939). Zenger Pub Co, 1980 (ISBN 0892010649).
  • Lukas, Richard C. Forgotten Holocaust: The Poles Under German Occupation, 1939-1944. Hippocrene Books, Inc, 2001 (ISBN 0781809010).
  • Majer, Diemut et al. Non-Germans under the Third Reich: The Nazi Judicial and Administrative System in Germany and Occupied Eastern Europe, with Special Regard to Occupied Poland, 1939-1945. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003 (ISBN 0801864933)
  • Prazmowska, Anita J. Britain and Poland 1939-1943 : The Betrayed Ally. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995 (ISBN 0521483859).
  • Rossino, Alexander B. Hitler Strikes Poland: Blitzkrieg, Ideology and Atrocity. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2003 (ISBN 0700612343).
  • Smith, Peter C. Stuka Spearhead: The Lightning War from Poland to Dunkirk 1939-1940. Greenhill Books, 1998 (ISBN 1853673293).
  • Sword, Keith The Soviet Takeover of the Polish Eastern Provinces, 1939-41. Palgrave Macmillan, 1991, (ISBN 0312055706).
  • Wacław Stachiewicz (1998). Wierności dochować żołnierskiej. OW RYTM. ISBN 83-86678-71-2.
  • Zaloga, Steve, and Howard Gerrard. Poland 1939: The Birth of Blitzkrieg. Oxford: Osprey Publishing, 2002 (ISBN 1841764086).
  • Zaloga, Steve. The Polish Army 1939-1945. Oxford: Osprey Publishing, 1982 (ISBN 0850454174).
  • Encyklopedia PWN 'KAMPANIA WRZEŚNIOWA 1939', last retrieved on 10 December 2005, Polish language

Wprost cover (May 22, 2005) Wprost (Outright) is a weekly newsmagazine in Poland, founded on December 5, 1982 as a regional magazine in Greater Poland, since 1989 it is distributed country-wide. ... October 10 is the 283rd day of the year (284th in Leap years). ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... March 24 is the 83rd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (84th in Leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... September 19 is the 262nd day of the year (263rd in leap years). ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... March 24 is the 83rd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (84th in Leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Marek Jan Chodakiewicz (born in 1962 in Warsaw, Poland) is an American historian specializing in East Central European history of the 19th and 20th century. ... Brute Force is a controversial book by historian John Ellis which proposes that the Allied Forces won World War II not by the skill of their leaders but by brute force. ... Benjamin B. Fischer has worked for the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for nearly 30 years, and has been headquartered at its Center for the Study of Intelligence, History Staff, in recent years. ... Jan Tomasz Gross is the Norman B. Tomlinson 16 and 48 Professor of War and Society at Princeton University. ... Richard C. Lukas Richard C. Lukas is a noted American historian and author of numerous books and articles on Polish history and Polish-Jewish relations. ... Brigadier General Wacław Stachiewicz (1894-1973) was an officer of the Polish Army, geologist and a Polish writer. ... Volumes 1 thru 11 Wielka Encyklopedia Powszechna PWN (Great Universal Encyclopedia) is the largest Polish encyclopedia ever written. ... December 10 is the 344th day (345th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links


September 3 is the 246th day of the year (247th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 (MCMXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ...

Campaigns and theatres of World War II
European Theatre
Poland | Phony War | Denmark & Norway | France & Benelux countries | Britain
Eastern Front 1941-45 | Continuation War | Western Front 1944-45
Asian and Pacific Theatres
China | Pacific Ocean | South-East Asia | South West Pacific | Manchuria 1945
The Mediterranean, Africa and Middle East
Mediterranean Sea | East Africa | North Africa | West Africa | Balkans
Middle East | Madagascar | Italy
Other
Atlantic Ocean | Strategic bombing | Bombing of the Continental United States
Contemporary wars
Chinese Civil War | Soviet-Japanese Border War | Winter War | Anglo-Iraqi War
History of World War II
Theaters     Key events     Subtopics     Participants    

Prelude:
Causes
in Europe
in Asia Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II... Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini The European Theatre was an area of heavy fighting from 1939 to 1945 during World War II. // Preceding events Main articles: Events preceding World War II in Europe, Causes of World War II After Germany was defeated in World War I, the Treaty of Versailles... British Ministry of Home Security Poster The Phony War, or in Winston Churchills words the Twilight War, was a phase in early World War II marked by few military operations in Continental Europe, in the months following the German invasion of Poland. ... German battle cruisers in a Norwegian port in June 1940 The Norwegian Campaign led to the first direct confrontation between the military forces of the Allies — United Kingdom and France against Nazi Germany in World War II. The primary reason for Germany seeking the occupation of Norway was Germanys... Combatants Allies (France, Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg) Germany, Italy Commanders Maurice Gamelin, Maxime Weygand (French) Lord Gort (British Expeditionary Force) Gerd von Rundstedt (Army Group A) Fedor von Bock (Army Group B) Wilhelm von Leeb (Army Group C) H.R.H. Umberto di Savoia (Army... The Eastern Front of World War II was the theatre of war covering the conflict in central and eastern European regions from June 1941 to May 1945. ... The Continuation War or War of Continuation (Finnish: , Swedish: ) June 25, 1941-September 19, 1944, was the war that was fought between Finland and the Soviet Union during World War II. The United Kingdom declared war on Finland on December 6, 1941, but did not participate actively. ... During World War II, the Western Front was the theater of fighting west of Germany, encompassing France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemberg, and Denmark. ... US landings in the Pacific, 1942–1945 The Pacific War was the part of World War II that occurred in the Pacific Ocean, its islands, and in East Asia, 1937 to 1945. ... The South-East Asian Theatre of World War II was the name given to the campaigns of the Pacific War in India, Burma, Thailand, Malaya and Singapore. ... South West Pacific Area (SWPA) was the name given to one of the four major Allied commands in the Pacific theatre of World War II, during 1942-45. ... Combatants Soviet Union Japan Commanders Alexandr Vasilevskij Otsuzo Yamada Strength Soviet Union 1,577,225 men, 26,137 artillery, 1,852 sup. ... The Mediterranean region. ... The name African Theatres of World War II encompasses actions which took place in World War II between Allied forces and Axis forces, between 1940 and 1943 both on the African mainland and in nearby waters and islands. ... The Middle East Theatre of World War II is defined largely by reference to the British Middle East Command, which controlled Allied forces in both Southwest Asia and eastern North Africa. ... Battle of Mediterranean Conflict World War II Date Place Mediterranean Sea Result Allied victory The Naval Battle of the Mediterranean was waged during World War II, to attack and keep open the respective supply lines of Allied and Axis armies, and to destroy the opposing sides ability to wage... The East African Campaign refers to the battles fought between British Empire and Commonwealth forces and Italian Empire forces in Italian East Africa during World War II. This campaign is often seen as part of the North African Campaign. ... During World War II the North African Campaign, also known as the Desert War, took place in the North African desert from September 13, 1940 (The USA started to directly supply the British in this effort on May 11, 1942) to May 13, 1943. ... The name West African campaign refers to two battles during World War II: the Battle of Dakar (also known as Operation Menace) and the Battle of Gabon, both of which were in late 1940. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Middle East Campaign was a part of the Middle East Theatre of World War II. // Overview This campaign included: The British police actions in Palestine. ... Strategic Bombing during World War II was unlike anything the world had previously witnessed. ... Attacks on United States territory in North America during World War II by the Axis Powers were rare, mainly due to North Americas geographical separation from the central theaters of conflict in Europe and Asia. ... Combatants Chinese Nationalist Party Chinese Communist Party Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Mao Zedong Strength 3,600,000 circa June 1948 2,800,000 circa June 1948 The Chinese Civil War (Traditional Chinese: 國共内戰; Simplified Chinese: 国共内战; Pinyin: guógòng neìzhàn; literally Nationalist-Communist Civil War) was a conflict in... Combatants Soviet Red Army Imperial Japanese Army Commanders Georgy Zhukov Michitaro Komatsubara Strength 57,000 30,000 Casualties 6,831 killed, 15,952 wounded 8,440 killed, 8,766 wounded The Battle of Khalkhin Gol, sometimes spelled Halhin Gol or Khalkin Gol and known in Japan as the Nomonhan Incident... Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov, later Semyon Timoshenko Strength 200,000 men, 32 tanks, 119 aircraft (In the beginning), 250,000 men, 30 tanks, 130 aircraft (At the end) 460,000 men, 1,500 tanks, 1,000 aircraft (In the beginning), 1,000,000... Combatants Iraq United Kingdom Commanders Rashid Ali General Sir Edward Quinan Strength five divisions about two divisions Casualties 2,500 1,200 The Anglo-Iraqi War was a short war fought between the United Kingdom and the Iraqi nationalist government, from April 18 to May 30, 1941. ... Combatants Allies: Poland, British Commonwealth, France/Free France, Soviet Union, United States, China, and others Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan, and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total dead: 50 million Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total dead: 12 million World War II... This article lacks information on the importance of the subject matter. ... This article is concerned with the events that preceded World War II in Asia. ...


Main Theaters:
Europe
Eastern Europe
Africa
Middle East
• Mediterranean
Asia & Pacific
China
Atlantic Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini The European Theatre was an area of heavy fighting from 1939 to 1945 during World War II. // Preceding events Main articles: Events preceding World War II in Europe, Causes of World War II After Germany was defeated in World War I, the Treaty of Versailles... The Eastern Front of World War II was the theatre of war covering the conflict in central and eastern European regions from June 1941 to May 1945. ... During World War II the North African Campaign, also known as the Desert War, took place in the North African desert from September 13, 1940 (The USA started to directly supply the British in this effort on May 11, 1942) to May 13, 1943. ... The Middle East Theatre of World War II is defined largely by reference to the British Middle East Command, which controlled Allied forces in both Southwest Asia and eastern North Africa. ... The Mediterranean region. ... US landings in the Pacific, 1942–1945 The Pacific War was the part of World War II that occurred in the Pacific Ocean, its islands, and in East Asia, 1937 to 1945. ... Combatants United Kingdom, Canada, United States of America Germany Commanders Percy Noble, Max Horton, Frederick John Walker, Leonard Warren (L.W.)Murray Karl Dönitz Casualties 30,248 merchant sailors 3,500 merchant vessels 175 warships 28,000 sailors 783 submarines The Second Battle of the Atlantic was the longest...

  

1939:
• Polish Campaign
• Phony War
1940:
• Norwegian Campaign
• Battle of France
• Battle of Britain
1941:
• Operation Barbarossa
• Attack on Pearl Harbor
• Battle of Moscow
• Siege of Leningrad
• Battle of Sevastopol
1942:
• Battle of Stalingrad
• Operation Torch
• Battle of Midway
• Dieppe Raid
1943:
• Battle of Kursk
• Italian Campaign
1944:
• Battle of Normandy
• Operation Bagration
• Battle of the Bulge
• Battle of Leyte Gulf
• Operation Market Garden
1945:
• Battle of Berlin
• End in Europe
• Hiroshima & Nagasaki
• Battle of Manchuria
• Surrender of Japan
British Ministry of Home Security Poster The Phony War, or in Winston Churchills words the Twilight War, was a phase in early World War II marked by few military operations in Continental Europe, in the months following the German invasion of Poland. ... German battle cruisers in a Norwegian port in June 1940 The Norwegian Campaign led to the first direct confrontation between the military forces of the Allies — United Kingdom and France against Nazi Germany in World War II. The primary reason for Germany seeking the occupation of Norway was Germanys... Combatants Allies (France, Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Poland, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg) Germany, Italy Commanders Maurice Gamelin, Maxime Weygand (French) Lord Gort (British Expeditionary Force) Gerd von Rundstedt (Army Group A) Fedor von Bock (Army Group B) Wilhelm von Leeb (Army Group C) H.R.H. Umberto di Savoia (Army... Combatants United Kingdom Germany Italy Commanders Hugh Dowding Hermann Göring Albert Kesselring Strength 700 fighters 1,260 bombers, 316 dive-bombers, 1,089 fighters Casualties 1,547 aircraft, 27,450 civilian dead, 32,138 wounded 2,698 aircraft One of the major campaigns of the early part of World... Combatants Axis Powers Soviet Union Commanders Supreme commander: Adolf Hitler Supreme commander: Josef Stalin Strength ~ 3. ... Combatants United States of America Imperial Japan Commanders Husband Kimmel (USN) Walter Short (USA) Chuichi Nagumo (IJN) Strength 8 battleships, 8 cruisers, 29 destroyers, 9 submarines, ~50 other ships, ~390 planes 6 aircraft carriers, 2 battleships, 3 cruisers, 9 destroyers, 8 tankers, 23 fleet submarines, 5 midget submarines, 441 planes... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Fedor von Bock Georgi Zhukov Strength ~ 1,500,000 ~ 1,500,000 Casualties 250,000 700,000 The Battle of Moscow refers to the defense of the Soviet capital of Moscow and the subsequent counter-offensive against the German army, between October 1941 and January... Combatants Axis Powers, Spanish Blue Division Soviet Union Commanders Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb Georg von Kuechler Kliment Voroshilov Georgy Zhukov Strength 725,000 930,000 Casualties Unknown 300,000 military, 16,470 civilians from bombings and estimated 1 million civilians from starvation The Siege of Leningrad (Russian: блокада Ленинграда) was the German... Combatants Germany, Romania Soviet Union Commanders Erich von Manstein Filipp Oktyabrskiy, Ivan Petrov Strength 350,000+ 106,000 Casualties at least 100,000 killed, wounded or captured. ... Combatants Axis Powers Soviet Union Commanders Erich von Manstein Friedrich Paulus Hermann Hoth Georgy Zhukov Vasily Chuikov Aleksandr Vasilevsky Strength German Sixth Army German Fourth Panzer Army Romanian Third Army Romanian Fourth Army Hungarian Second Army Italian Eighth Army 500,000 Germans Unknown number Reinforcements Unknown number Axis-allies Stalingrad... Combatants United States United Kingdom Free French Germany Vichy France Commanders Dwight Eisenhower François Darlan Strength 73,500 ? Casualties 479+ dead 720 wounded 1346+ dead 1997 wounded Operation Torch was the Anglo-American invasion of French North Africa in World War II during the North African Campaign, started November... Combatants United States Empire of Japan Commanders Chester Nimitz, Frank J. Fletcher, Raymond A. Spruance Isoroku Yamamoto, Chuichi Nagumo, Tamon Yamaguchi† Strength Three carriers, ~50 support ships, 233 carrier aircraft, 127 land-based aircraft Four carriers, ~150 support ships, 248 carrier aircraft, 16 floatplanes Casualties 1 carrier and 1 destroyer... Dieppes chert beach and cliff immediately following the raid on 19 August 1942. ... Combatants Germany Soviet Union Commanders Erich von Manstein, Günther von Kluge, Walther Model Georgy Zhukov, Konstantin Rokossovsky, Nikolai Vatutin Strength 800,000 infantry, 2,700 tanks, 2,000 aircraft 1,300,000 infantry, 3,600 tanks, 2,400 aircraft Casualties 500,000 dead, wounded, or captured 500 tanks 200... The Italian Campaign of World War II was the name of Allied operations in and around Italy, from 1943 to the end of the war. ... Combatants Allied Powers Nazi Germany Commanders Dwight D. Eisenhower (Supreme Allied Commander) Bernard Montgomery (land) Bertram Ramsay (sea) Trafford Leigh-Mallory (air) Gerd von Rundstedt (OB WEST) Erwin Rommel (Heeresgruppe B) Strength 326,000 (by June 11) Unknown Casualties 53,700 dead, 18,000 missing 155,000 wounded 200,000... Combatants Axis Soviet Union Commanders Ernst Busch Konstantin Rokossovski Georgy Zhukov Aleksandr Vasilevsky Strength 800,000 1,700,000 Casualties (Soviet est. ... Combatants United States United Kingdom Germany Commanders Dwight D. Eisenhower Gerd von Rundstedt Strength Dec 16 - start of the Battle: about 83,000 men; 242 Sherman tanks, 182 tank destroyers, and 394 pieces of corps and divisional artillery. ... Combatants United States, Australia Japan Commanders William Halsey, Jr Jisaburo Ozawa Strength 17 aircraft carriers 18 escort carriers 12 battleships 24 cruisers 141 destroyers Many other ships, PT boats, and submarines About 1,500 planes 4 aircraft carriers 9 battleships 19 cruisers 34 destroyers About 200 planes Casualties 3,500... Combatants XXX Corps First Allied Airborne Army II SS Panzer Corps Army Group B First Parachute Army Commanders Montgomery von Rundstedt Strength 35,000 airborne, XXX Corps 20,000 (start of the battle) Casualties 18,000 casualties 13,000 casualties Operation Market Garden (September 17-September 25, 1944) was an... Combatants Nazi Germany Soviet Union (incl. ... The final battles of the European Theatre of World War II and the German surrender took place in late April and early May 1945. ... The Fat Man mushroom cloud resulting from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rises 18 km (60,000 ft) into the air from the hypocenter. ... Combatants Soviet Union Japan Commanders Alexandr Vasilevskij Otsuzo Yamada Strength Soviet Union 1,577,225 men, 26,137 artillery, 1,852 sup. ... The Surrender of Japan in August 1945 brought World War II to a close. ...

  

Resistance
Home Front
Technology
Production
Equipment
Cryptography
Blitzkrieg
Phony War Yugoslav partisans entering Belgrade, October, 1944. ... During the war, women worked in factories throughout much of the West and East. ... German Enigma encryption machine. ... // Aircraft List of aircraft of World War II List of World War II military aircraft of Germany List of aircraft of the Armée de lAir, World War II List of aircraft of the USAAF, World War II List of aircraft of the Royal Air Force, World War II... Cryptography was used extensively during World War II, with a plethora of code and cipher systems fielded by the nations involved. ... Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ... British Ministry of Home Security Poster The Phony War, or in Winston Churchills words the Twilight War, was a phase in early World War II marked by few military operations in Continental Europe, in the months following the German invasion of Poland. ...


Civilian impact & atrocities:
Holocaust
Japanese war crimes
Strategic bombings
Allied war crimes Selection at the Auschwitz camp in 1944, where the Nazis chose whom to kill immediately and whom to use as slave labor or for medical experimentation. ... The term Japanese war crimes refers to events which occurred during the period of Japanese imperialism from the late 19th to mid-20th centuries. ... Strategic Bombing during World War II was unlike anything the world had previously witnessed. ... At the end of World War II, several trials of Axis war criminals took place, most famously the Nuremberg Trials. ...


Aftermath:
Effects
Casualties
Cold War Note: This section was copied from the article World War II and removed from that article in order to reduce the size of the article. ... Piechart showing percentage of military and civilian deaths by alliance during World War II. World War II was the single deadliest conflict the world has ever seen, causing many tens of millions of deaths. ... The Cold War was the protracted geopolitical, ideological, and economic struggle that emerged after World War II between the global superpowers of the Soviet Union and the United States, supported by their military alliance partners. ...

  

Participants Participants in World War II involves all nations who either participated directly or were affected by any of the theatres or events of World War II. // Alliances World Map with the participants in World War II. The Allies depicted in green (those in light green entered after the Attack on...


The Allies
•  Soviet Union
•  United States
•  United Kingdom
•  Canada
•  France
•  Poland
•  Greece
•  Yugoslavia
•  Czechoslovakia
•  Australia
•  New Zealand
•  India
•  China
•  Egypt
•  Brazil
• more...
The group of countries known as the Allies of World War II consisted of those nations opposed to the Axis Powers during the Second World War. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Soviet_Union. ... Image File history File links US_flag_48_stars. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ... Image File history File links Canadian_Red_Ensign_1921. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_France. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Poland. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Greece_(1828-1978). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia. ... Yugoslavia (Jugoslavija in all south Slavic languages, Југославија in Serbian and Macedonian Cyrillic) is a term used for three separate but successive political entities that existed during most of the 20th century on the Balkan Peninsula in Europe. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Australia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_New_Zealand. ... Image File history File links Imperial-India-Blue-Ensign. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Republic_of_China. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Egypt_1922. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Brazil. ... The group of countries known as the Allies of World War II consisted of those nations opposed to the Axis Powers during the Second World War. ...


The Axis
•  Germany
•  Japan
•  Italy
• more... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany_1933. ... Image File history File links Naval_Ensign_of_Japan. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy_(1861-1946). ... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ...

See Also

More information on World War II:

 World War II from Wiktionary
 WWII Textbooks from Wikibooks
 WWII Quotations from Wikiquote
 WWII Source texts from Wikisource
 WWII Images and media from Commons
 WWII News stories from Wikinews
For events preceding September 1, 1939, see the timeline of events preceding World War II. 1939 September September 1, 1939 The Polish September Campaign begins as Poland is attacked by Germany at 4:30 am with Luftwaffe air attacks against several targets. ... // Military engagements For military topics (land, naval, and air engagements as well as campaigns, operations, defensive lines and sieges), please see List of military engagements of World War II. Political and social aspects of the war Causes of World War II Appeasement Occupation of Denmark Netherlands in World War II... German soldiers during the Battle of Stalingrad. ... List of World War II conferences of the Allied forces In total Churchill attended 14 meetings, Roosevelt 12, Stalin 5. ... This article is about Total War. ... The influence of World War II has been profound and diverse, having an impact on many parts of life. ... Military awards of World War II were presented by most of the combatants. ... Attacks on United States territory in North America during World War II by the Axis Powers were rare, mainly due to North Americas geographical separation from the central theaters of conflict in Europe and Asia. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Image File history File links Wikinews-logo. ...

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  Results from FactBites:
 
Polish September Campaign - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (6347 words)
Polish Bofors 40 mm antiaircraft gun and a bombed Polish Army column during the Battle of the Bzura.
Polish forces abandoned regions of Pomerania, Greater Poland and Silesia in the first week of the campaign, after a series of battles known as the Battle of the Border.
From 17 September to 20 September, the Polish Armies Kraków and Lublin were crippled at the Battle of Tomaszów Lubelski, the second largest battle of the campaign.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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