The Danzig Corridor

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wm
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 27 Jun 2022 20:55

Pre-ww2 nobody had the text of the secret protocol although some people generally knew what was there.

The Poles had been aware of persistent rumors about a new portion of Poland for months so it wasn't any news although the Soviet Union actively deceived Poland by offering various help in the war against Germany.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 27 Jun 2022 20:56

Steve wrote:
26 Jun 2022 11:39
Can it be argued that Beck’s decision to accept the British guarantee was a diplomatic disaster since it decided Hitler on a violent solution? Was the Polish approach to negotiations on the corridor and Danzig a diplomatic disaster? Was all of Polish diplomacy in 1939 up the creek because of how it was conducted?
To be a "disaster" a viable alternative must be offered and there was none.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 27 Jun 2022 21:02

Orlov wrote:
26 Jun 2022 15:07
Why do you not mention the "spirit of Munich", where the fate of Czechoslovakia was decided by the four powers without the presence of Prague politicians?
The fate of Czechoslovakia wasn't decided by four powers. The Munich Agreement was a set of rules, that (if accepted by the Czechs) would prevent Hitler's invasion of Czechoslovakia literally the next day.

Actually, the only alternative to the Munich Agreement was Hitler's invasion of Czechoslovakia (and its bloody subjugation) literally the next day.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Orlov » 28 Jun 2022 09:28

wm wrote:
27 Jun 2022 21:02
The fate of Czechoslovakia wasn't decided by four powers. The Munich Agreement was a set of rules, that (if accepted by the Czechs) would prevent Hitler's invasion of Czechoslovakia literally the next day.
Actually, the only alternative to the Munich Agreement was Hitler's invasion of Czechoslovakia (and its bloody subjugation) literally the next day.
I just have no words for this historical revisionism. Astounding a statement - I am asking you for archival sources or scientific monographs that present such arguments. I just have no words for this historical revisionism. Astounding a statement - I am asking for sources or scientific monographs that present such arguments.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 28 Jun 2022 10:11

Do you deny the fact that Hitler issued a 48-hour ultimatum (the Godesberg Memorandum) against Czechoslovakia?
That the ultimatum was real and the war (Operation Green) would be real too?
If not, against what do you object precisely?

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Orlov » 28 Jun 2022 13:35

The fate of Czechoslovakia wasn't decided by four powers - FALSE!
Sources, I will ask for this (and ending this digression), and not creating new elements of argumentation - not related to the main topic of this discussion about "The Danzig Corridor".

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Steve » 01 Jul 2022 21:42

Hello Orlov,
I have not seen any evidence that the UK and France had the secret protocol of the Hitler Stalin Pact the day after it was signed. If they did who did they obtain this information from? The text of the Pact was published in British newspapers on the 24th. There was some discussion of the Pact at a British cabinet meeting on the 24th but at the next meeting on the 26th there seems to have been no discussion about it.

However, it seems that information on the secret protocol had reached the British prior to September 1 from a Czech journalist but it was not considered a reliable source. The British minister in Riga reported on August 31st that there was a secret understanding between Germany and the USSR to divide Eastern Europe. The British minister in Bucharest reported the same on September 12 after being told by the Rumanian President. These reports were apparently not believed by the British Foreign Office. That’s the best I can come up with.

I don’t think that anything short of divine intervention would have stopped Polish mobilisation. A realistic appraisal of the military situation they found themselves in was not a factor in the leadership’s deliberations.

There was no mention in the secret protocol of when the USSR would invade Poland.

Chamberlain was not a pacifist but he was prepared to bend over backwards to avoid a war. A war that he thought would inflict huge damage on Britain even if it won, lead to American dominance and perhaps bring communist armies into central Europe.

Not sure what the “spirit of Munich “etc has to do with it.

A “viable alternative” would have been to accept Hitler’s offer and go down the same road that the Hungarians, Rumanians, Slovaks, Bulgarians and Yugoslavians (prior to the coup) thought was the right road. Were they all wrong and Poland right or was Poland wrong and they were all right?

Time for a cup of tea and a digestive biscuit.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 01 Jul 2022 22:02

Steve wrote:
01 Jul 2022 21:42
I don’t think that anything short of divine intervention would have stopped Polish mobilisation. A realistic appraisal of the military situation they found themselves in was not a factor in the leadership’s deliberations.
The leadership expected Poland would be defeated in a few months. As they didn't expect the Soviet invasion it was a reasonable, although exaggerated expectation.
And the French were informed about that.
The idea that the Poles expected to win or achieve a stalemate is really straight from Nazi and Soviet propaganda.


Steve wrote:
01 Jul 2022 21:42
A “viable alternative” would have been to accept Hitler’s offer and go down the same road that the Hungarians, Rumanians, Slovaks, Bulgarians and Yugoslavians (prior to the coup) thought was the right road. Were they all wrong and Poland right or was Poland wrong and they were all right?
It's not an alternative for the simple reason the Poles, i.e., the Polish nation would accept that, wouldn't allow it. All Polish political parties were unanimous in that, even the most sworn enemies of the government support it.
Germany, for historical reasons, was seen as the enemy and the fear and hate were universal. Nothing could have changed that - at least not in such a short time.
The thinking was the showdown with Germany was inevitable so as well it could happen right then if the German wanted it.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by john2 » 02 Jul 2022 03:02

I get tired of these threads where people say the Poles should have accepted Hitler's offer. Poland was in Germany's lebensraum and Hitler had declared the people of eastern Europe inferior. They were to be killed off to make way for pure blood German colonists who would settle the area. Hitler's goal was to ultimately get German troops into Poland. Sure he would have liked to do it peacefully like Hungary and Romania but he had no intention of leaving. And once Russia and the west were defeated Hitler would be free to do as he pleased. Now the Poles didn't know what Hitler had in store for them but their instinct to resist was right.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Orlov » 02 Jul 2022 11:26

Steve wrote:
01 Jul 2022 21:42
Hello Orlov,
I have not seen any evidence that the UK and France had the secret protocol of the Hitler Stalin Pact the day after it was signed. If they did who did they obtain this information from? The text of the Pact was published in British newspapers on the 24th. There was some discussion of the Pact at a British cabinet meeting on the 24th but at the next meeting on the 26th there seems to have been no discussion about it.
[...]
Not sure what the “spirit of Munich “etc has to do with it.
Hello Steve
I am afraid to pull dysgression - because not on the main topic
Excuse me - mistake - one day
In memoirs, former U.S. ambassador to Germany Charles E. Bohlen reveals how, on the morning of 24 August 1939, he visited Herwarth at the German embassy and received the full content of the secret protocol to the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, signed the day before. The secret protocol contained an understanding between Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin on how to split Central Europe, the Baltic states and Finland between the two powers. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was urgently informed, but the United States did not pass this information to any concerned governments in Europe. A week later the plan was realised with the German invasion of Poland and the Second World War began.
Charles Bohlen, Witness to History: 1929–1969 Norton, 1973
UK received the contents of the secret protocol from the Americans.
French received text from the Reich Chancellery - I don't remember well - from Lammers himself.
But Poles didn't receive.
Nobody - anyway in their right mind, knowing about the planned partition of the state - would not have decided to mobilize and fight for the Danzig corridor. And this despite the aggressive anti-German propaganda from March 1939 and the saber waving by the joyful General Bortkiewicz and his protégé Marshal Rydz.
Officially it is not known when, but it is understandable that under favorable circumstances (i.e. after the end of the conflict over Chalchyn-Gol and the beginning of the war by Germany).
Poles knew about the pacifism of Western societies, but not of their governments, which was crowned by the Abbeville conference in the spirit of "Why Die for Danzig? (Mourir pour Dantzig?)"
john2 wrote:
02 Jul 2022 03:02
I get tired of these threads where people say the Poles should have accepted Hitler's offer. Poland was in Germany's lebensraum and Hitler had declared the people of eastern Europe inferior. They were to be killed off to make way for pure blood German colonists who would settle the area. Hitler's goal was to ultimately get German troops into Poland. Sure he would have liked to do it peacefully like Hungary and Romania but he had no intention of leaving. And once Russia and the west were defeated Hitler would be free to do as he pleased. Now the Poles didn't know what Hitler had in store for them but their instinct to resist was right.
Thanks John2 for your answer - increasingly fashionable revisionism of alternative history. The fact is that Hitler likewise failed lengthy negotiations with Yugoslavia, which he then destroyed within a week.
With German supremacy, Poland could count on little, apart from the propaganda parade on Red Square, as some fantasists describe
PS: I can see that you can get answers from a "specialist" Mr. wm - as before he thought Soraya's book has "valuable insights", so now he likes to create revisionist and alternative entities regarding Munich. I no longer engage in discussions with "the better-all-knower".
I prefer discussions about the Danzig corridor based on documents and memories of event participants - and not wishful arguments of wm.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 02 Jul 2022 13:09

Where did you get "the aggressive anti-German propaganda" and "the saber waving"?
From a ghost of Paul Joseph Goebbels?
I'll give you a brand new Tesla for every example of Polish saber-rattling from the contemporary mainstream Polish press.
In fact, the Polish media were so docile (mostly because of the censorship) in their writings that many Poles didn't expect the war at all and were totally surprised by it.

And what's with that "failed lengthy negotiations with Yugoslavia."
Yugoslavia signed the Tripartite Pact and became German-friendly. Two days later, a coup d'état destroyed that and threatened to join the Allies.
For that, they were invaded by Germany, Italy, and Hungary. There was really nothing more to it.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Orlov » 02 Jul 2022 14:19

wm - look on reports of Independent Information Department at the Corps District Headquarters (Samodzielny Referat Informacyjny przy Dowodztwach Okregu Korpusu - SRI DOK) - a field office of the 2nd Division of the General Staff of the Polish Army dealing with counterintelligence and partly military intelligence.
When you stop looking at history with emotions and challenge in a spirit of aggression - when you remember the basic historical principle of "sine ira et studio", maybe you will come up with an idea for visit the military archive (CAW) and review the documents of the Polish counterintelligence and see what was the last six months before the outbreak of the war. Reports were written by qualified officers.
Besides, "the wisest and all-knowing wm" let's look at the Polish press from the period of March-August 1939 - see it for yourself - articles and titles in Polish.
And dear wm will learn the culture of discussion and return to the topic of the post!
Plus you did not answer the question about the sources of your innuendo and historical revisionisms. So you break a lot of AHF rules.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by john2 » 03 Jul 2022 01:36

Orlov - since this thread is apparently between you and wm I will go for now but anyone who was foolish enough to trust Hitler was playing with fire. He broke nearly every treaty he signed his own followers were in fear for their lives. Papen who helped Hitler get power was shown Hitler's gratitude when he was nearly killed in 1934. For the next few years Hitler toyed with the idea of killing Papen off to tie up what he considered to be a loose end. If this is how Germans were to be treated think how the Poles were to be treated - who he considered to be inferior. The Poles were fighting for survival and did the only thing they could in 1939.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Steve » 03 Jul 2022 01:44

According to Wikipedia Bohlen received the full content of the Pact on August 24 and Roosevelt was informed. Wikipedia says that the US did not share the information with Britain, France or Poland. You live and learn. It would not have made any difference if the Poles had known about a secret protocol since its army was by this time concentrated in the west and Hitler was determined to destroy the country.

Many people make the mistake of thinking that Hitler always intended to destroy Poland. At first he tried to reach an agreement and the concessions he offered were not insignificant. Often forgotten is that he was prepared to recognise the German Polish border which no prior German government had done. When he could not get what he wanted he then decided to destroy the country. Quite likely if Poland had reached an agreement based on Hitler’s terms it would then have been pressured into joining the Tripartite Pact as Hungary and Rumania did. However, nationalist sentiment in Poland may have been so high that no Government would have survived long if it had done a deal with Hitler.

I know the Polish leadership said they expected to lose once they were in Rumania but I was not aware that they were saying it before the start of the war. I thought that Plan Z envisaged the gradual withdrawal of the army to south-eastern Poland and then to hang on till the French launched their offensive in the west. Presumably if the Poles expected to be defeated they had a plan for what to do in the event of defeat. I am not aware of the Poles activating any such plan perhaps wm you could tell us if such a plan existed.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by john2 » 03 Jul 2022 02:08

Many people make the mistake of thinking that Hitler always intended to destroy Poland. At first he tried to reach an agreement and the concessions he offered were not insignificant. Often forgotten is that he was prepared to recognise the German Polish border which no prior German government had done. When he could not get what he wanted he then decided to destroy the country. Quite likely if Poland had reached an agreement based on Hitler’s terms it would then have been pressured into joining the Tripartite Pact as Hungary and Rumania did. However, nationalist sentiment in Poland may have been so high that no Government would have survived long if it had done a deal with Hitler.
Hitler "guaranteed" Czechoslovakia and that did nothing for them. It's clear that Hitler wanted Danzig and was saying anything to get it. I still find it hard to believe Hitler was going to spare them considering that he believed Poland to be inferior and they were in Germany's so called living space.

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