31 August 2009

UPDATED: Remembering Poland

Updated links to: the ongoing war of words with Russia over Stalin's role, today's commemorative ceremonies in Poland and elsewhere, and ongoing efforts to rehabilitate Stalin.

Seventy years ago, 1 September 1939, Germany invaded Poland at 0445 on three fronts and by naval bombardment. Two days later, France and Great Britain declared war on Germany, and the battle for Europe was joined. Culturally rich Poland however, was sacrificed on the altar of delay and prevarication, and less than one year later, Norway and Denmark followed. Preceding the start of combat, Germany threatened all Jews, her neighbors, and took over a relatively complacent Austria. She took these actions one step further by hobbling Russian and Italy through a non-aggression pact and peace treaty respectively.

In 1943, Poland's agony culminated with the Warsaw ghetto uprising and deportation and slaughter of her remaining Jews. The end of the war brought no peace to Poland, which was promptly folded into the USSR after the Soviet Union invaded western Poland (eastern Poland was invaded following the non-aggression pact). Poland did not become her own nation again until 1989 when Lech Walesa, supported spiritually and politically by the Pope and
President Reagan, led the Polish arm of the Velvet Revolution.

Remember Poland.
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