"Poland wanted war with Germany"

Discussions on all aspects of Poland during the Second Polish Republic and the Second World War. Hosted by Peter K
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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by Peter K » 01 Jul 2011 20:15

The author benefited a lot from the official Polish archival documents, in which up to now most authors describing this period did not pay attention at all, because it believed that they are not convincing.
This is so called bullshit. Just like that book.

Michulec is not the only historian who makes use of Polish and German archival documents.

He is a "historian" who manipulates those documents and selects only documents he likes to use.

I wrote "historian" because he is not a professional historian actually.
it would be nice if it appeared translated into English, but my English is too weak
There are so many books which should be translated into English before this rubbish.
but a translation in to German I try to do becaus those language i know much better.
So I wish you good luck with translating those 740+ pages of babble.

The entire book is written in very crude and vulgar language.

Narration is also extremely boring. BTW - are you going to translate it for free?
but my English is too weak
So you can start a thread about it in Polish on historycy.org forum.

I will willingly discuss about this book with you. I know you post on historycy.org as Glasisch.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by RG » 02 Jul 2011 09:46

michael mills wrote: Poles need to accept that on 2-4 September 1939, members of their nation killed scores of innocent ethnic German civilians in Bromberg/Bydgoszcz.

That is a historical fact, not Nazi propaganda. The only element of Nazi propaganda was the exaggeration of the number of victims by a factor of 10, not the fact that there were ethnic German victims of violence by Polish military and civilians, more than 5000 in all of Poland.

Refusal to accept that historical fact is an indication that many Poles have still not escaped from their chauvinist way of thinking, unlike the vast majority of Germans, who have totally renounced their own chauvinism.
Discussion on Bydgoszcz is conducet in:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3697

I will not waste time to repeat it once again.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by wm » 02 Jul 2011 18:32

michael mills wrote:Refusal to accept that historical fact is an indication that many Poles have still not escaped from their chauvinist way of thinking, unlike the vast majority of Germans, who have totally renounced their own chauvinism.
If you had written this 20 years ago I would have agreed with you whole heartily but now as a major proponent of:
michael mills wrote: The killings of ethnic Germans in Bromberg, three days after the outbreak of war, were the result of an hysterical reaction by Poles to the German invasion, in the context of a war psychosis that had gripped large parts of the Polish population for over a month prior to that invasion.
is a Polish historian, professor of Kazimierz Wielki University in Bromberg ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W%C5%82odz ... %C4%99bski )

and a major proponent of:
fights in Bydgoszcz were provoked by German saboteurs, supported by part of aggressive German minority
is a German historian ( http://www.amazon.co.uk/Das-Unternehmen ... 3766321013 )

I think your are fighting last century wars, the world really has changed that much lately...

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by Marcus » 02 Jul 2011 19:20

This thread is not for discussions on the Bromberg massacre, the first posts were split off from that thread as they mainly discussed the claim that Poland wanted war with Germany so get please back on topic.

/Marcus

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by michael mills » 03 Jul 2011 06:51

I'm really curious, as the parties forming Polish weak and disorganized (at least comparing to the three separate fractions inside the ruling Sanation regime) opposition were:

Polish Socialist Party
People's Party
National Democracy
National Party
Labour Party
National Radical Camp Falanga
National Radical Camp ABC
Communist Party of Poland

leaders of which party wanted the Oder-Neisse Line and a war with Germany?
Polish political leaders in opposition to the Sanacja government were not only leaders of registered political parties, they were also leaders and leading members of various groups that were not political parties as such, for example the paramilitary militias and ex-insurgent groups.

Of the actual political parties in opposition, the National Party (Stronnictwo Narodowa), the latest manifestaion of Endecja, was by far the largest and most important. It most certainly supported war with Germany; if not the leaders in the Sejm, then non-parliamentary spokesmen for it were publicly arousing popular passions tyhroughout the summer of 1939 and creating a war hysteria.

The People's Party (Stronnictwo Ludowa), the manifestation of the peasants' movement, was also anti-German and supportive of a war, although less so than the National Party.

There also supporters of war who were not linked to any party, particularly in the military.

Finally, there were elements within Sanacja who were opposed to Beck's policies and in favour of a military confrontation with Germany. These were aligned with Smigly-Rydz, who was engaged in a struggle for power with Beck within Sanacja.

The essential factor that allowed the emergence in Poland of a sentiment in favour of a military confrontation with Germany was the agreements on military cooperation with Britain and France reached in April 1939.

Prior to those agreements, Poland was too weak to contemplate war with Germany. Although ever since the end of the First World War there had been influential elements within Poland who wanted to seize Danzig and all German territory east of the Oder-Neisse Line, they did not push strongly for such action, since they knew that Poland by itself was too weak, and that it would not have any external support for such action.

In 1923, when French and Belgian troops occupied the Ruhr, the Polish Government was considering an invasion of Danzig and Germany, for the purpose of occupying the territory up to the Oder-Neisse Line. It had received the tacit support of France for such action, but did not go ahead because of the strong opposition of Britain.

After Pilsudski came to power in 1926, he suppressed the anti-German elements in Poland, so no-one was permitted to call for war with Germany. Once the Declaration of Non-Aggression had been made in January 1934, the anti-German elements were suppressed even more severely, and some such as the Association for the Defence of the Western Territories (Zwiazek Oborony Kresow Zachodnich) were disbanded.

After the death of PIlsudski in May 1935, the anti-German elements began to re-emerge, with the permission of Smigly-Rydz, who wanted their support in his struggle for power within Sanacja.

It was the agreements on military cooperation reached with Britain and France in April 1939, and the strategic plan agreed between the Polish and French general staffs in May, under which the French Army would invade Germany 14 days after Poland had sent its own forces into action against Germany, that created the prospect of a successful coalition war against Germany, which in turn encouraged the anti-German forces in Poland to begin making propaganda in favour of a war to seize the German eastern territories. There was also a wide-spread belief in Poland that the German officer corps was so afraid of war with Britain and France that it would overthrow Hitler as soon as war broke out, causing a collapse of the German armed forces and allowing the Polish cavalry to ride into Berlin within a week.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by michael mills » 03 Jul 2011 07:03

a Polish historian, professor of Kazimierz Wielki University in Bromberg
I wrote that many Poles have not escaped from their chauvinist way of thinking, unlike the great majority of Germans.

Obviously there are some Poles who have escaped from their chauvinism, and Professor Jastrzebski is one of them.

At the other end of the spectrum, some Germans have been so assiduous in their rejection of their own national chauvinism that they have begun to accept the anti-German chauvinism of some of Germany's former enemies, Gunter Schubert apparently falls into that category.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by wm » 04 Jul 2011 19:58

michael mills wrote: Of the actual political parties in opposition, the National Party (Stronnictwo Narodowa), the latest manifestaion of Endecja, was by far the largest and most important.
200 thousand members in a population of 35 million people. During strikes, the PPS could muster almost a million.
michael mills wrote: The People's Party (Stronnictwo Ludowa), the manifestation of the peasants' movement, was also anti-German and supportive of a war, although less so than the National Party.
its leaders in jail or forced to emigrate...
both were vocal but the ruling party had an absolute majority, it could ignore or persecute them at will.
michael mills wrote: In 1923, when French and Belgian troops occupied the Ruhr, the Polish Government was considering an invasion of Danzig and Germany, for the purpose of occupying the territory up to the Oder-Neisse Line. It had received the tacit support of France for such action, but did not go ahead because of the strong opposition of Britain.
In that year of 1923 we had:
- a country on verge of civil war after Polish President had been murdered by right-wing assassin, (there were a second unsuccessful assassination attempt on life of the new President later that year)
- massive series of strikes across the country (1273 in total), army battling striking workers on the streets with scores of dead on both sides as a result
- governments changing every few months (3 in total)
- economy in shambles and country of instant millionaires thanks to hyperinflation
- right-wing, Ukrainian and communist bombs and attacks

and on top of that, on July Marshal Piłsudzki, utterly disgusted with the situation in Poland, resigned from all his military posts calling all Polish politicians "whores", leaving the army leaderless.

I think Germans were as safe as it can only be...
Next year Germany declared an economic war on Poland. Did Poland use this as a Casus belli? Hardly as the mayhem continued and got even worse.
michael mills wrote: Although ever since the end of the First World War there had been influential elements within Poland who wanted to seize Danzig and all German territory east of the Oder-Neisse Line, they did not push strongly for such action, since they knew that Poland by itself was too weak, and that it would not have any external support for such action.
michael mills wrote: which in turn encouraged the anti-German forces in Poland to begin making propaganda in favour of a war to seize the German eastern territories.
I think some proof of this would be helpful, and preferably something coming from men in power. It 's easy to fish out a little monsters from the cauldron of Polish politics but only the big fish are important.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by michael mills » 05 Jul 2011 02:31

It 's easy to fish out a little monsters from the cauldron of Polish politics but only the big fish are important.
It is a mistake to underestimate the influence of anti-German political movements such as Endecja, even though they were excluded from the Polish Government during the Sanacja period.

After Pilsudski seized power in 1926, he suppressed Endecja and other anti-German political elements. However, after he died in 1935, a power struggle broke out among his successors, in particular between Beck and Smigly-Rydz. Since Beck's aim was to preserve and continue Pilsudski's policy of friendship with Germany, Smigly-Rydz sought the support of anti-German elements outside the Sanacja regime such as Endecja, and began to adopt some of their policies.

Thus, by 1939, parts of the Sanacja regime had become almost as anti-German as Endecja, despite the efforts of Beck to maintain the "spirit of 28 January", the date of the 1934 Polish-German Declaration of Non-Aggression.

There can be no doubt that Smigly-Rydz was a big fish, and he had aligned himself to a large degree with the little monsters of Endecja.

For information on the threat of Polish invasion of German eastern territories (East Prussia and Silesia) in 1923, I suggest this book by Josef Korbel:

" Poland between East and West: Soviet and German Diplomacy toward Poland, 1919-1933" (Princeton, N.J., Princeton U.P., 1963)

As you probably know, Josef Korbel was the father of former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

The book refers to Polish military threats toward Germany and Danzig at various times between 1920 and 1933.

These two books also detail Polish aggressiveness and arrogance toward Danzig, which was subjected to a crippling boycott:

Kimmich, Christoph M , "The Free city: Danzig and German Foreign Policy, 1919-1934" (New Haven, Yale U.P., 1968)

Tighe, Carl, "Gdansk : National Identity in the Polish-German Borderlands" ( London ; Winchester, Mass. : Pluto Press, c1990)

Note that none of the three books cited above is biassed against Poland and toward Germany.

No doubt Poland was economically and politically a shambles in 1923, after the assassination of President Narutowicz, but Germany was equally a shambles, suffering hyperinflation and threatened by uprisings from the extreme Left and extreme Right.

Poland's army was a lot bigger than Germany's, and it would have had the full support of France if it had invaded the German eastern territories. With French support, the Polish army could have invaded and occupied German territory, despite its political and economic troubles.

WM, I can understand that like most Poles you want to see your country as the innocent victim of the aggression of its evil neighbours. But you have to accept that in the inter-war period Poland was itself an aggressive and expansionist power, with parts of its ruling class, particularly the officer corps, infected by the arrogant szlachta spirit.

For example, Poland wanted to dissolve Czechoslovakia and annex Slovakia, thereby achieving a border with Hungary.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by michael mills » 05 Jul 2011 02:46

WM,

Another useful book for you:

Andreas Lawaty, "Das Ende Preussens in polnischer Sicht : zur Kontinuitat negativer Wirkungen der preussischen Geschichte auf die deutsch-polnischen Beziehungen" ( Berlin : W. de Gruyter, 1986)

Lawaty traces the attitudes of Polish intellectuals and publicists toward Germany from the early 19th Century until the early post-war period.

He demonstrates the emergence of Piastist nationalism at the end of the 19th Century, with its demand not only for the Polish frontiers of 1772 but also for all German territory east of the Oder-Neisse line, on the basis that in the 10th Century those territories had had a Slavic population. He shows that at that same time, the idea arose among Polish intellectuals of "reslavonising" the German eastern territories by expelling the ethnic German population.

Lawaty shows how the above ideas were adopted by the National Democrat movement which, even if it did not have much support among the peasants, was very influential in the Polish political class.

He also shows that the idea of seizing German territory east of the Oder-Neisse, initially limited to political movements of the Piastist variety, were accepted by all Polish political parties once war broke out in 1939. It was not Stalin's idea at all.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by Peter K » 05 Jul 2011 12:36

on the basis that in the 10th Century those territories had had a Slavic population.
In 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th centuries. And later a mix of Polish and Germanic population.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by Sid Guttridge » 05 Jul 2011 12:49

So, the source quoted for the proposition in the title of this thread is demonstrably false.

Shouldn't it therefore be closed down as a service to honest historical enquiry?

If there is a case to be answered about Poland's attitude, it would benefit from not being associated with a falsehood from the start.

Surely it would be better to start a new thread with a title like "Did Poland want war with Germany?", and transfer across some of the later posts not tainted by association with the original fake quote.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by wm » 05 Jul 2011 13:38

michael mills wrote: He demonstrates the emergence of Piastist nationalism at the end of the 19th Century, with its demand not only for the Polish frontiers of 1772 but also for all German territory east of the Oder-Neisse line, on the basis that in the 10th Century those territories had had a Slavic population.
but the oryginal idea was of a strong, economically viable and with Polish majority Poland. To this end the 1920 border was much better than the the Oder-Neisse line.
michael mills wrote: He shows that at that same time, the idea arose among Polish intellectuals of "reslavonising" the German eastern territories by expelling the ethnic German population.
to fathers of the National Democrat movement expulsion was unthinkable, they were nineteenth-century men, all they were able to come up with was assimilation. But as the Poles were regarded as civilizationally backward comparing to Germans they saw the assimilation as a problem too.
michael mills wrote: Lawaty shows how the above ideas were adopted by the National Democrat movement which, even if it did not have much support among the peasants, was very influential in the Polish political class.
Yes, it was vocal but without polls or free elections who knows how influential.
michael mills wrote: He also shows that the idea of seizing German territory east of the Oder-Neisse, initially limited to political movements of the Piastist variety,
but does he explain why in the bible of the National Democrat movement (http://biblio.ojczyzna.pl/TXT/Mysli%20Polaka.txt) there is zero occurrence of the words "Odra" or "Nysa"? Maybe he can show us an election manifesto showing the idea of seizing German territory east of the Oder-Neisse?

I agree, the idea was there, roaming the vast political landscape but it was a mouse among elephants. Mr Lawaty seems to think that a mouse can intimidate an elephant but it is just a Looney Toons induced urban legend...
michael mills wrote: He also shows that the idea of seizing German territory east of the Oder-Neisse, initially limited to political movements of the Piastist variety, were accepted by all Polish political parties once war broke out in 1939.
Saying "all parties" is really stretching it but anyway it was Danzig and Opole Voivodeship in 1940. At the end of 1942 it was the Oder-Neisse line.
Of course in between was the Stalin's plan for Polish territories from January 1942.
michael mills wrote: It was not Stalin's idea at all.
We really don't know that. The idea is so simple (but as you said extremely harmful for Poland) that a Klingon will come out with it after studding map of Poland for a few second. Anyway it was Stalin who called all the shots, Poles could only sit and watch.

It's as asking who invented the gas chambers. Sir Benjamin Ward Richardson did in 1884. Interesting but so what?

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by wm » 05 Jul 2011 17:09

but it must be stressed however that the 1942 proposal, made by Wladysław Sikorski and met with considerable opposition, was one-off. In the next years there were many others which generally followed the more modest Dmowski's Line.

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Re: "Poland wanted war with Germany"

Post by Sid Guttridge » 07 Jul 2011 11:06

Hi Michael,

You don't seem to be making a case that "Poland wanted war with Germany".

However, you are making a case that after the Anglo-French guarantees sentiment in Poland was to militarily resist any German encroachment.

This, of course, begs the question whether Poland would have resisted Germany militarily even before or without the Anglo-French guarantees.

Your list of Germanophobe Polish nationalists of the 1930s seems to outline a persuasive case that there was always a likelihood that Poland would resist Germany militarily.

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Re: Der Bromberger Blutsonntag

Post by M.Riemann » 20 Feb 2016 23:59

Michael Kenny wrote:
Jimmyson wrote: "Poland wants war with Germany and Germany will not be able to avoid it even if she wants to." (Polish Marshal Rydz-Smigly as reported in the Daily Mail, August 6th, 1939)"

I have seen this quote used extensively by apologists but so far no one has managed to produce the article.

I suppose one clue as to why this is a problem might be the date.
Aug 6th 1939 was a Sunday and there was no edition of the Daily Mail on a Sunday.
The reference is a fake.
Is not a fake, just a mistake, see below:
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article ... sosnkowski

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