|"We Remember 1939"|
In 1939 the communist Russia (called Soviet Union back then), at that time an avid Nazi Germany's ally, have attacked Poland already defending herself for almost 3 weeks from German attack. It was this stab in the back and final "death blow" to the Second Polish Republic, after which Poland as a country ceased to exist, being (again) carved and split between Germany and Russia.
According to the Pact signed just week before WW2 between German Third Reich and Russian Soviet Union (nowadays called "Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact"), the soviet Russia and nazi Germany have agreed upon mutual non-aggression and mutual help in case of war. However, the unofficial and never published part of the agreement was about aggression on - and division of - Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland and Romania, in order to expand the territories of Third Reich and Soviet Union.
For Poles it meant nothing else, and it was no different, than the Fourth Partition of Poland ("Fourth" because - you've guessed it - Germany and Russia have attacked and partitioned Poland already three times in the past), after which she lost (and still hasn't regained) half of her territories in the East. After the war they were partially offset by Stalin's personal decision to pass the former German territory east of river Oder to Poland. Although these were native Polish territories and originally belonged to Poland until years 1200's, but later on these territories have been lost to Germany during 13th Century.
Due to half a century of post-WW2 communist propaganda and falsifications of history, when soviet Russia was taught to be the "liberator" of Poland, large portion of Polish society - including many historians educated during communist Poland - even today doesn't consider Soviet attack on Poland in 1939 as the Fourth Partition of Poland. They repeat soviet propaganda lies about "justified self-defense of Soviet Union" in September of 1939. However, the very same people somehow don't see their illogical stance when they describe relatively bloodless Russian takeover of Crimea in 2014 as "attack on Ukraine", while much worse and very bloody Russian attack on Poland in 1939 is a "self-defense" to them...
Signing of such non-aggression Pact (the official part of the pact) on August 23, 1939, certainly was not surprising to anyone in knowledge of long Soviet-German cooperation, dating back to 1918 - regardless of the officially "anticommunist" Hitler's politics.
Both countries have been cooperating militarily since end of WWI, but their economic ties have been - without any exagerration - simply invaluable to Germany, particularily in years 1939-1941.
Even during the night before German attack on Soviets in June 1941 there were many Russian rail transports of steel and grains going to Germany (even though soviet Russia had not enough grains for her own citizens!), and German U-boats have been sinking British fleet by thousands while being propelled by the Soviet oil since very beginning of WW2. Entire, or very significant, German supplies of phosphates, chrome, iron, mineral oils and rubber was coming from Soviet Union until June 1941. How vast was Soviet economical help to Third Reich is probably best described by this small fact: the Wehrmacht's entire supply of underwear, linen and undergarments was made entirely of Russian cotton.
That's why it is important to always remember, that the communist Russian Federation (called back then Soviet Union) was until middle of 1941 one of the best, if not the best German ally - certainly better than Italy or Japan, despite the post-WW2 communist propaganda's efforts in erasing it from history books and twisting and falsifying the facts regarding soviet cooperation with Germany.
Soviet contribution to German war efforts of first half of WW2 cannot be underestimated and it probably was much, very much larger than we even suspect today. Furthermore, communist Russia have almost officially joined the Axis if not for Stalin's demand to exclude Romania from it (which Russia have partially invaded in 1939 and probably was planning to further her advances there), altogether with his unrealistic demands to give territories of modern Iran and Iraq under Soviet sphere of influence (once they would be conquered). It were only after collapse of these talks in November of 1940 when Hitler decided, that attack on Soviet Union would give Germany more potential gains than keeping further alliance with soviets. It's no coincidence, that Hitler have finally approved plans to attack Soviet Union - even though they were prepared by German military many months earlier - only on December 5th, 1940, just when multilateral Axis-Soviets talks have ended...
It is the German attack on Russia - this, and only this event - what forced Russians to change sides and join the Allies in a war against Germany (and later against Japan). For Stalin and communists, since the beginning of Soviet Union's existence, their main enemy were always capitalist western countries, while Hitler's socialist Third Reich - despite his anticommunist stance - was always viewed as potential ally in fight with "worldwide capitalism". That's why I must repeat and emphasize: it were only for German attack that forced Soviet Union to change sides in WW2. Russians didn't become Allies voluntarily, they were simply pushed into temporary friendship with Allied countries because of German attack. This fact is being constantly "forgotten" or omitted by almost all western historians, and basically completely unknown nowadays to the public all over the world - obviously thanks to more than half a century of communist propaganda insisting on falsifying or omitting this disgraceful part of soviet history (which still continues as of today!).
Although it didn't look like it at the time, September 17th, 1939, is the day when Soviet Union have openly began the conquest of the world, which only ended in 1955 with "Cold War" and creation of the informal Communist Russian Empire, called "Warsaw Pact". The world-wide war, that the Soviet Union started in 1939, have only ended in December of 1991 with the collapse and dissolution of USSR itself.
Unfortunately, even in Poland herself - due to half a century of communist occupation - the facts of communist Russia's close ties and cooperation with Hitler's Nazi regime of German Third Reich are still being conveniently omitted or mentioned very briefly (if at all), and this Fourth Partition of Poland is officially still called a "September Campaign" (as if it was merely a period of some small battles, not an attack of two totalitarian regimes on a sovereign country). In more than quarter century since 1989's Polish turn into so-called "democracy", people with roots in the former communist occupants' governments are still writing history books and they still are key members of the so-called "democratic" governments of Third Polish Republic. It is unbelievable, but in all those years since "transformation" to "democracy" (quarter century!) there have been only a handful of films made on this subject, and they were mostly obscure documentaries at that... but that is just another story, which I will too write about one of these days...
Wikipedia - Soviet Union attack on Poland (English)
Wikipedia - Soviet Union on the Axis side (English)
|Map of Fourth Partition of Poland published on Sept. 18, 1939 in Russian newspaper "Izvestya"|
|Map of final partition of Poland dated Sep. 28, 1939 and signed by Stalin and Ribbentrop|
|Territorial advances of Russian Soviet Union and German III Reich in 1939|
|Soviet soldier guarding Polish airplane downed by Germans|
|German-Soviet cooperation and friendship lasted until 1941... September 1939|
|Wehrmacht and Red Army brothers-in-arms, September 1939|
|German-Soviet-Ukrainian friendship, September 1939|
|Apparently Germans didn't mind portraits of Stalin's... September 1939|
|Political Officers of Red Army ready for joint Soviet-German parade in Polish city of Brest, Sept. 23, 1939|
|General Guderian and Soviet officer during Soviet-German parade in Polish city of Brest, September 23, 1939|
|"Deutsch russ, Grenze" (German-Russian Border)|
Free postcard issued with "Das Deutsche Mädel" (German Girl) magazine, October 1939
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UAKTUALNIENIE: 2017-03-29 00:08
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