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Old 22nd February 2008, 19:50
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
Alter Hase
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Warsaw, Poland
Posts: 2,014
Franek Grabowski
Re: Polish War Crimes

Originally Posted by Sylvester Stadler View Post
On 4 Sep 1939 the Wehrmacht established the War Crimes Bureau in response to numerous report of Polish war crimes and atrocities committed against not only German servicement but also German civilians who resided within the borders of 1939 Poland. The agency was the logical successor to the Prussian Military Bureau of Investigation of Violations of the Laws of War which had been created in 1914 to determine through the gathering of physical evidence and witness statements whether war crimes had been committed by enemy soldiers and civilians. All the eyewitness statements had to be corroborated by either physical evidence or the testimony of the captured enemy. Thus, after only three days of war, the Poles were already engaged in the violations of the laws and regulations of warfare to which the Polish government was signatory.
Or was it formed to justify the aggression, after France and UK declared war on Germany on 3 September? Not to mention that Germany broke the law by starting undeclared war on 1 September.
The most famous atrocity committed by the Poles during this period against Germans was at Bromberg on 3 September and thereafter which is called Bloody Sunday by the Germans. The German survivors gave testimony which was backed up by autopsies of the corpses. The Polish claim that all these people were insurgents who were armed is contradicted by the German survivors who stated they had no weapons and is also contradicted by captured Poles who stated that no weapons were ever found by the Poles. The victims included children one year of age and priests and men and women who were very old including 75-year olds. Autopsies confirmed that many of the victims were killed at close range in the back of the head or neck. Many were also bayonetted after capture.

At Targowisko the corpses of 46 ethnic Germans were discovered. Of these 46, the ages ranged from six month to 80 years of age. Half of them were females and 18 were children. Only five were adult males of military age. They were all murdered by firearms. The lists of massacre sites is endless but it is a fact that at least 9000 civilians of ethnic German origin were murdered by the Poles. Josef Goebbels later increased this to 58,000 which counter-productive since few in the West believed him but it also led to the West disbelieving in any Polish atrocities. To this day it is politically incorrect to accuse anyone but the Germans of war crimes.
The first German reports stated there were some 5,000+ German civilians killed in Bydgoszcz which puts credibility of your data in serious doubt. You can read about Bydgoszcz eg. here (in Polish, sorry), and it is worth to check photos there alone.
I was unable to find another issue, but it had some photos of equipment found with arrested Germans already before the war, bombs hidden in fuel cans, etc.
Based on recent findings, Germans attacked Polish troops on 3 September at 10.00. After ant-diversionary action, which ended at about 16.00, death of about 30-45 Polish soldiers as well as about 90-110 Germans was confirmed. Polish troops then left the city. The following day Germans against attacked troops moving through Bydgoszcz. During intense combats some 240 Poles fell as well as up to 300 Germans, some of them executed on the spot after quick trials or Kangaroo Courts. Please note, that they were Polish citizens. German troops entered Bydgoszcz on 5 September, and within few days some 300-400 Poles were executed. Further losses of Bydgoszcz's Polish population, both to executions and deaths in camps are estimated at 28,000, 14% of Bydgoszcz's population.
Such accurate research was possible because many of Polish army documents survived as well as burial records which noted relligion, quite accurately distinguishing nationality.
Even German researchers tend to the Polish version, see eg. Guenter Schubert, Das Unternehmen Bromberger Blutsonntag. Tod einer Legende, Köln 1989.
A crime against German soldiers occurred on 9 September a musical band of 31 soldiers was captured by Polish soldiers and this group was later joined by about 16 other POWs in the area of Stopnica. They were forced into a ditch by about 60 Polish soldiers who proceeded to fire on them. About a dozen German soldiers survived, wounded. Depositions were taken of the survivors in the hospital by a military judge.
Huh, another case. A bus with a German military orchestra entered combat zone and was fired at by Polish troops.
you can find a photo of the bus here, note it was moved to another location (market place) and burned there.
About 22-24 soldiers were taken PoW and held in a haystack. For an unknown reason it went ablaze but it was never found if it was an accident, result of German fire or if someone took revenge for execution of 11 civilians in nearby Prusy village on 7 September. It was not an organised execution as there were survivors.
The War Crimes Bureau received around a dozen reports each day of atrocities. The military judges were very busy investigating these allegations and their reports are very thorough, with evidence that would stand up in an American court (unless the judge is a liberal bleeding heart. The War Crimes Bureau published six volumes, each of about 500 pages, of the war crimes committed by the Poles which include the following:
I. Polish atrocities in Bromberg, Pless, and Stopnica
II. Polish atrocities against German civilians and POWs in the province of Poznan
III. and IV. Violations of the laws of war by the Polish Army
V. Massacre of German civilians in Lodz
VI. Polish murders of German civilians
Well, judging by the cases of Bydgoszcz and Stopnica, it does not look very promising.
For the sake of history and research, the German government should release these six volumes. David Irving who uses only primary sources and documents would be an excellent writer to delve into this topic.
Ah, mysterious volumes hidden in Zone 51. While I disagree with arguments of most red and pinko opponents of Irving, I was disappointed with his research for Mare's Nest. There are more other writers to deal with the subject.
In the 1960s the Federal German Archives in Koblenz established a commission to determine the identity of the German victims of the Poles in September 1939. They were able to name 3841 persons. Without the cooperation of the Polish government (Communist), this is as far as the investigation allowed.
And at the same time they were unable to deal with Polish requests concerning German criminals. Anyway, where and when results were published?