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Šta je bio nacističko-sovjetski pakt i kako je utjecao na Poljsku?

Šta je bio nacističko-sovjetski pakt i kako je utjecao na Poljsku?


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Nacističko-sovjetski pakt bio je pakt o nenapadanju između nacističke Njemačke i SSSR-a. Takođe poznat kao Pakt Molotov-Ribbentrop, sporazum je potpisan u Moskvi 23. avgusta 1939. Ostao je na snazi ​​skoro dvije godine, sve dok Nijemci nisu raskinuli pakt 22. juna 1941. invazijom SSSR-a.

Pakt je bio iznenađenje za savremene posmatrače. Nacisti su mrzili komunizam, a Sovjeti mrze fašizam. Pa zašto su ove ideološki suprotstavljene sile sklopile takav sporazum?

Prvi nacističko-sovjetski razgovori su propali

1933. nacistička partija je dobila vlast u Njemačkoj, a Hitler je krenuo u provedbu svog agresivnog programa naoružavanja. Staljin je razmišljao o stvaranju saveza sa sve moćnijim nacističkim vođom, ali ideološke razlike spriječile su to.

Dan razgovara s Rogerom Moorhouseom, istaknutim britanskim historičarom Trećeg rajha i Drugog svjetskog rata, o zloglasnom savezu sklopljenom između Hitlerove Njemačke i Staljinove Rusije u ranim fazama Drugog svjetskog rata.

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Umjesto toga, Staljin se okrenuo zapadnim liberalnim demokratijama i pridružio se Ligi naroda u septembru 1934. Članovi Lige su se na sličan način protivili komunizmu, ali su prihvatili SSSR u svoje tijelo kao potencijalnog saveznika protiv bilo kakve buduće agresije nacističke Njemačke.

Staljin je postao nestrpljiv

Uprkos tome što se pridružio Ligi, Staljin se protivio politici smirivanja Britanije i Francuske, za koju je vjerovao da ohrabruje naciste da krenu na istok protiv Sovjeta.

U proljeće 1939. činilo se vjerovatnim da će Britanija i Francuska uskoro biti u ratu s Hitlerom, a Staljin se bojao njemačke vojne agresije. U aprilu te godine, sovjetski ministar vanjskih poslova Maxim Litvinov predložio je ugovor o kolektivnoj sigurnosti između Britanije, Francuske i SSSR -a.

Ruski ministar vanjskih poslova Vyacheslav Molotov (lijevo) i njemački ministar vanjskih poslova Joachim von Ribbentrop (drugi s desna) potpisali su pakt 23. avgusta 1939. godine.

Izbor je bio lak: Staljin se odlučio za savezništvo s Hitlerom. Sporazum je naizgled označio službeni kraj nacističko-sovjetskog neprijateljstva. Dana 23. avgusta 1939. njemački ministar vanjskih poslova Joachim von Ribbentrop i ruski ministar vanjskih poslova Vyacheslav Molotov potpisali su nacističko-sovjetski pakt.

Šta se dogodilo sa Poljskom?

Tajni protokol u paktu navodi da će Njemačka i SSSR podijeliti i okupirati Poljsku i staviti svoje dijelove zemlje pod svoje sfere uticaja. Nacisti i Sovjeti kasnije su napali Poljsku.

Njemačka je napala Poljsku 1. rujna 1939., a kampanja koja je uslijedila bila je kratka, ali razorna, s bombaškim napadima koji su uništili fizički krajolik Poljske.

Hitler posmatra njemačke trupe kako marširaju u Poljsku tokom takozvane "septembarske kampanje". Zasluge: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-S55480 / CC-BY-SA 3.0

Crvena armija je takođe napala zemlju 17. septembra 1939. Poljska je mogla odoljeti samo šest sedmica prije nego što se predala 6. oktobra 1939. godine.

Njemačka i SSSR podijelili su Poljsku na zasebne okupacione zone. SSSR je anektirao područja istočno od rijeka Narew, Visle i San, dok je Njemačka anektirala zapadnu Poljsku. Nacisti su također ujedinili južnu Poljsku sa sjevernim dijelovima Ukrajine kako bi stvorili “Opštu vladu”, zonu okupiranu od nacista.

Posljedice

Pakt je ostao na snazi ​​skoro dvije godine. Dana 22. juna 1941. proglašeno je ništavim kada je nacistička Njemačka započela operaciju Barbarossa i izvršila invaziju na SSSR. Ovo je bila ključna prekretnica u ratu, jer je dovela do pridruživanja SSSR -a saveznicima u borbama protiv nacista i sila Osovine.

Roger Moorhouse je povjesničar Trećeg Reicha i Drugog svjetskog rata, autor knjige The Devils's Alliance, Killing Hitler & Berlin at War. U ovoj fascinantnoj epizodi govori o najgoroj pomorskoj katastrofi u istoriji: potonuću Wilhelma Gustloffa 1945.

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Na kraju rata Crvena armija se ponovo našla u Poljskoj, samo što je ovaj put trebalo osloboditi Poljake od nacističke okupacije.

Čak je i nakon rata sovjetska vlada nastavila poricati postojanje tajnog protokola o podjeli i okupaciji Poljske. Otkriveno je, priznato i osuđeno tek 1989. godine s padom SSSR -a.


Opcije stranice

Njemački bojni brod u 4.45 ujutro 1. septembra 1939. godine Schleswig-Holstein otvorio vatru na poljski garnizon tvrđave Westerplatte, Danzig (današnji Gdanjsk), što je trebalo postati prvi vojni angažman u Drugom svjetskom ratu. Istovremeno, 62 njemačke divizije podržane sa 1.300 aviona započele su invaziju na Poljsku.

Odluka Adolfa Hitlera da napadne Poljsku bila je kocka. The Wehrmacht (njemačka vojska) još nije bila u punoj snazi, a njemačka ekonomija je i dalje bila uključena u mirnodopsku proizvodnju. Kao takva, invazija je alarmirala Hitlerove generale i izazvala protivljenje njegovoj komandi - i curenje njegovih ratnih planova u Britaniju i Francusku.

Odluka . invazija Poljske bila je kocka.

Hitlerovi generali pozvali su na oprez i zatražili više vremena za dovršetak odbrane 'Zapadnog zida', kako bi se zaustavila svaka britanska i francuska kontraofanziva na zapadu, dok je većina Wehrmacht bio angažovan na istoku. Njihov vođa je odbacio njihovu zabrinutost i umjesto toga zatražio njihovu potpunu lojalnost.

Hitler je bio uvjeren da će invazija na Poljsku rezultirati kratkim pobjedničkim ratom iz dva važna razloga. Prvo, bio je uvjeren da će raspoređivanje prvog oklopnog korpusa na svijetu brzo poraziti poljske oružane snage u blitzkrieg uvredljivo. Drugo, ocijenio je britanske i francuske premijere, Nevillea Chamberlaina i Edouarda Daladiera, slabim, neodlučnim liderima koji bi se odlučili za mirovno rješenje, a ne za rat.


Zašto je Hitler htio pakt?

Učešće Njemačke u ratu s dva fronta u Prvom svjetskom ratu podijelilo je njene snage, oslabivši i potkopavši njihovu ofanzivnu snagu.

Dok se pripremao za rat 1939. godine, njemački diktator Adolf Hitler bio je odlučan u namjeri da ne ponovi iste greške. Nadao se da će Poljsku steći bez sile (pošto je godinu dana prije toga anektirao Austriju), nužnost da se umanji mogućnost rata na dva fronta kao posljedica invazije bila je jasna.

Na sovjetskoj strani, pakt je uslijedio nakon raspada britansko-sovjetsko-francuskih pregovora o trojnom savezu početkom augusta 1939. Prema ruskim izvorima, savez je propao jer su Poljska i Rumunija odbile prihvatiti prolaz sovjetskih vojnih snaga preko svoje teritorije ali je također istina da je ruski premijer Joseph Stalin imao povjerenja u britanskog premijera Nevillea Chamberlaina i konzervativnu stranku u Engleskoj, te je vjerovao da neće u potpunosti podržati ruske interese.

Tako su rođeni pregovori o nacističko-sovjetskom Paktu o nenapadanju.


Sadržaj

Početkom 1939., nekoliko mjeseci prije invazije, Sovjetski Savez je započeo pregovore o strateškom savezu s Ujedinjenim Kraljevstvom i Francuskom protiv urušene militarizacije nacističke Njemačke pod Adolfom Hitlerom. U kolovozu 1939. SSSR je ponudio Ujedinjenom Kraljevstvu i Francuskoj da pošalju "120 pješačkih divizija (svaka sa oko 19.000 vojnika), 16 konjičkih divizija, 5.000 komada teške artiljerije, 9.500 tenkova i do 5.500 borbenih aviona i bombardera na njemačkim granicama ". [21] Budući da SSSR nije imao granicu s Njemačkom, to bi zapravo značilo ogromnu, dobrovoljnu okupaciju teritorija Poljske od strane Crvene armije, koja je ranije bila mjesto Poljsko -sovjetskog rata 1920. Pregovori su propali. [22]

Pošto su uslovi odbačeni, Josip Staljin je sa Adolfom Hitlerom težio Paktu Molotov-Ribbentrop, koji je potpisan 23. avgusta 1939. Ovaj pakt o nenapadanju sadržavao je tajni protokol koji je uspostavio podjelu Sjeverne i Istočne Evrope na njemačku i sovjetsku sfere uticaja u slučaju rata. [23] Nedelju dana nakon potpisivanja Pakta Molotov – Ribbentrop, nemačke snage napale su Poljsku sa zapada, severa i juga 1. septembra 1939. Poljske snage su se postepeno povukle na jugoistok gde su se pripremale za dugu odbranu rumunskog mostobrana. i čekali francusku i britansku podršku i olakšanje koje su očekivali, ali ni Francuzi ni Britanci nisu im priskočili u pomoć. Sovjetska Crvena armija je 17. septembra 1939. napala regije Kresy u skladu s tajnim protokolom. [24] [Napomena 7]

Prilikom otvaranja neprijateljstava, nekoliko poljskih gradova, uključujući Dubno, Łuck i Włodzimierz Wołyński, pustili su Crvenu armiju na miru, uvjereni da ona maršira kako bi se borila protiv Nijemaca. General Juliusz Rómmel iz Poljske vojske izdao je neovlašteno naređenje da ih tretira kao saveznika prije nego što bude prekasno. [27] Sovjetska vlada objavila je da djeluje kako bi zaštitila Ukrajince i Bjeloruse koji su živjeli u istočnom dijelu Poljske, jer se poljska država - prema sovjetskoj propagandi - urušila uslijed napada nacističke Njemačke i više nije mogla jamčiti sigurnost vlastitih građana. [28] [29] [30] [31] Suočeni s drugim frontom, poljska vlada je zaključila da odbrana rumunjskog mostobrana više nije izvodljiva i naredila hitnu evakuaciju svih uniformiranih trupa u tada neutralnu Rumunjsku. [1]

Liga naroda i mirovni ugovori na Pariškoj mirovnoj konferenciji 1919. nisu, kako se nadalo, pomogli u promicanju ideja pomirenja po evropskim etničkim linijama. Epidemijski nacionalizam, žestoka politička ogorčenost u srednjoj Evropi (Njemačka, Austrija, Mađarska) gdje je 100% stanovništva imalo u odsustvu proglašen univerzalno krivim, a postkolonijalni šovinizam (Italija) doveo je do pomahnitalog revanšizma i teritorijalnih ambicija. [32] Józef Piłsudski nastojao je proširiti poljske granice što je moguće istočnije u pokušaju da stvori federaciju pod vodstvom Poljske, sposobnu suprotstaviti se budućim imperijalističkim akcijama Rusije ili Njemačke. [33] Do 1920. boljševici su izašli kao pobjednici iz Ruskog građanskog rata i de facto su stekli isključivu kontrolu nad vladom i regionalnom administracijom. Nakon što su sve strane intervencije odbijene, Crvena armija, kojom su komandovali Trocki i Staljin (između ostalih), počela je napredovati prema zapadu prema spornim teritorijama namjeravajući potaknuti komunističke pokrete u zapadnoj Evropi. [34] Granični okršaji 1919. postupno su eskalirali i na kraju kulminirali u Poljsko -sovjetskom ratu 1920. [35] Nakon pobjede Poljske u bitci za Varšavu, Sovjeti su tužili za mir, a rat je završio primirjem u oktobru 1920. [36] Strane su 18. marta 1921. potpisale formalni mirovni sporazum, Riški mir, kojim su sporne teritorije podijeljene između Poljske i Sovjetske Rusije. [37] U akciji koja je u velikoj mjeri odredila sovjetsko-poljsku granicu u međuratnom razdoblju, Sovjeti su ponudili poljskoj mirovnoj delegaciji teritorijalne ustupke u osporavanim pograničnim područjima, koja su prije ličila na granicu između Ruskog carstva i Poljsko-litvanske zajednice prva podjela 1772. [38] Nakon mirovnog sporazuma, sovjetski lideri su stalno napuštali ideju međunarodne komunističke revolucije i nisu se vraćali tom konceptu otprilike 20 godina. [39] Konferencija veleposlanika i međunarodne zajednice (s izuzetkom Litve) priznala je istočne granice Poljske 1923. [40] [41]

Pregovori o sporazumu Uredi

Njemačke trupe okupirale su Prag 15. marta 1939. Sredinom aprila, Sovjetski Savez, Britanija i Francuska su počele razmjenjivati ​​diplomatske prijedloge u vezi s političkim i vojnim sporazumom za suprotstavljanje potencijalnoj daljoj njemačkoj agresiji. [42] [43] Poljska nije učestvovala u ovim razgovorima. [44] Tripartitne rasprave fokusirale su se na moguće garancije zemljama učesnicama ako se njemački ekspanzionizam nastavi. [45] Sovjeti nisu vjerovali da će Britanci ili Francuzi poštovati kolektivni ugovor o sigurnosti, jer su odbili reagirati protiv nacionalista tokom Španjolskog građanskog rata i dopustili da se okupacija Čehoslovačke dogodi bez efikasnog protivljenja. Sovjetski Savez je također sumnjao da će Britanija i Francuska nastojati ostati po strani tokom svakog potencijalnog nacističko-sovjetskog sukoba. [46] Međutim, Staljin je preko svojih emisara vodio tajne razgovore s nacističkom Njemačkom još 1936. godine, a prema Robertu C. Groginu (autor knjige Prirodni neprijatelji), uzajamno razumijevanje sa Hitlerom uvijek mu je bilo preferirano diplomatsko rješenje. [47] Sovjetski vođa nije tražio ništa osim željezne garancije protiv gubitka svoje sfere utjecaja, [48] i težio je stvaranju tampon zone sjever-jug od Finske do Rumunjske, prikladno uspostavljenoj u slučaju napada. [49] [50] Sovjeti su zahtijevali pravo ulaska u ove zemlje u slučaju prijetnje sigurnosti. [51] Razgovori o vojnim pitanjima, koji su započeli sredinom augusta, brzo su zastali oko teme prolaska sovjetskih trupa kroz Poljsku u slučaju njemačkog napada. Britanski i francuski zvaničnici vršili su pritisak na poljsku vladu da pristane na sovjetske uslove. [22] [52] Međutim, poljski zvaničnici su otvoreno odbili dopustiti sovjetskim trupama da uđu na poljsko područje izražavajući ozbiljnu zabrinutost da bi, kad bi trupe Crvene armije kročile na tlo Poljske, mogle odbiti zahtjeve za napuštanje. [53] Zatim su sovjetski zvaničnici predložili da se primjedbe Poljske zanemare i da se zaključe trojni sporazumi. [54] Britanci su odbili prijedlog, plašeći se da bi takav potez potaknuo Poljsku da uspostavi jače bilateralne odnose s Njemačkom. [55]

Njemački zvaničnici tajno su mjesecima slali nagovještaje sovjetskim kanalima, aludirajući da će u političkom sporazumu biti ponuđeni povoljniji uslovi od Britanije i Francuske. [56] Sovjetski Savez je u međuvremenu započeo razgovore s nacističkom Njemačkom o uspostavljanju ekonomskog sporazuma, istovremeno pregovarajući s onima iz tripartitne grupe. [56] Krajem jula i početkom avgusta 1939. sovjetski i njemački diplomati postigli su gotovo potpuni konsenzus o detaljima planiranog ekonomskog sporazuma i pozabavili se mogućnošću postizanja željenog političkog dogovora. [57] Dana 19. avgusta 1939. njemački i sovjetski zvaničnici zaključili su Njemačko -sovjetski trgovački sporazum iz 1939. godine, obostrano koristan ekonomski sporazum koji je predviđao trgovinu i razmjenu sovjetskih sirovina za njemačko oružje, vojnu tehnologiju i civilnu mašineriju. Dva dana kasnije Sovjetski Savez je prekinuo trojne vojne razgovore. [56] [58] Dana 24. avgusta, Sovjetski Savez i Njemačka potpisali su političke i vojne aranžmane nakon trgovinskog sporazuma, u Paktu Molotov -Ribbentrop. Ovaj pakt je uključivao uslove međusobne nenapadanja i sadržavao je tajne protokole koji su uređivali detaljne planove za podjelu država sjeverne i istočne Evrope na njemačku i sovjetsku sferu uticaja. Sovjetska sfera je u početku uključivala Latviju, Estoniju i Finsku. [Napomena 8] Njemačka i Sovjetski Savez podijelili bi Poljsku. Teritorije istočno od rijeka Pise, Nareva, Visle i San pripale bi Sovjetskom Savezu. Pakt je također pružao nacrte za učešće Sovjeta u invaziji [25], što je uključivalo i mogućnost da se povrate teritorije ustupljene Poljskoj u Riškom miru 1921. Sovjetski planeri povećali bi ukrajinsku i bjelorusku republiku da potčine cijelu istočnu polovinu Poljske bez prijetnje neslaganja s Adolfom Hitlerom. [61] [62]

Dan nakon potpisivanja njemačko-sovjetskog pakta, francuska i britanska vojna delegacija hitno su zatražile sastanak sa sovjetskim vojnim pregovaračem Klimentom Vorošilovom. [63] Vorošilov je 25. avgusta to priznao "s obzirom na promijenjenu političku situaciju, ne može se koristiti nikakva korisna svrha u nastavku razgovora." [63] Međutim, istog dana, Britanija i Poljska potpisale su Britansko-poljski pakt o uzajamnoj pomoći [64], koji je donio odluku da se Britanija obvezuje braniti i očuvati poljski suverenitet i nezavisnost. [64]

Hitler je pokušao odvratiti Britaniju i Francusku od miješanja u predstojeći sukob i 26. avgusta 1939. predložio je da to učini Wehrmacht snaga koje će Britaniji biti na raspolaganju u budućnosti. [65] U ponoć 29. avgusta, njemački ministar vanjskih poslova Joachim von Ribbentrop predao je britanskom ambasadoru Nevile Henderson spisak uslova koji bi navodno osigurali mir u pogledu Poljske. [66] Prema uslovima, Poljska je trebala predati Danzig (Gdanjsk) Njemačkoj i u roku od godinu dana održan je plebiscit (referendum) koji će se održati u poljskom koridoru, na osnovu prebivališta i demografije 1919. godine. [66] Kad je poljski veleposlanik Lipski, koji se sastao s Ribbentropom 30. augusta, izjavio da nema ovlaštenja da sam odobri ove zahtjeve, Ribbentrop ga je odbacio [67], a njegovo ministarstvo vanjskih poslova objavilo je da je Poljska odbila njemačku ponudu i dalje pregovori s Poljskom su prekinuti. [68] 31. avgusta, u operaciji sa lažnom zastavom, njemačke jedinice, predstavljajući se kao regularne poljske trupe, izvele su incident u Gleiwitzu u blizini pograničnog grada Gleiwitz u Šleskoj. [69] [70] Sljedećeg dana (1. septembra) Hitler je objavio da su službene vojne akcije protiv Poljske počele u 4:45 ujutro [67] Njemačke zračne snage bombardirale su gradove Lwow i Łuck. [71] Osoblje poljske službe sigurnosti uhapsilo je ukrajinsku inteligenciju u Lwowu i Przemyslu. [71]

Dana 1. septembra 1939. u 11:00 po moskovskom vremenu, savjetnik njemačke ambasade u Moskvi, Gustav Hilger doputovao je u Narodni komesarijat vanjskih poslova i formalno najavio početak njemačko -poljskog rata, aneksiju Danziga (Gdanjsk) pošto je prenio zahtjev načelnika Glavnog stožera OKL -a da radio stanica u Minsku pruži signalnu podršku. [72] Sovjetska strana se djelimično pridržala zahtjeva. [72] Istog dana vanredna sjednica Vrhovnog sovjeta Sovjetskog Saveza potvrdila je usvajanje istog "Univerzalni zakon o vojnoj dužnosti za muškarce u dobi od 17 godina i 8 mjeseci", kojim je nacrt zakona o službi iz 1937. produžen za još godinu dana. [72] Nadalje, Politbiro Komunističke partije odobrio je prijedlog Narodnog komesarijata za odbranu, koji je predviđao da se postojeća 51 puška divizija Crvene armije nadopuni ukupnom snagom od 76 streljačkih divizija od 6000 ljudi, plus 13 planinske divizije i još 33 obične puškarske divizije od 3.000 ljudi. [72]

Dana 2. septembra 1939. njemačka armijska grupa Sjever izvela je manevar kako bi obuhvatila snage Poljske (Pomorske vojske) koje su branile "poljski koridor" [72], što je rezultiralo da je poljski zapovjednik general Władysław Bortnowski izgubio komunikaciju sa svojim divizijama . [72] Probojem oklopnih kontingenata njemačke grupe armija Jug u blizini grada Częstochowa nastojalo se pobijediti poljsku 6. pješadijsku diviziju južno od Katovica, gdje se njemačka 5. oklopna divizija probila prema Oświęcimu, koja je zauzela skladišta goriva i zauzela skladišta opreme. [72] Na istoku su odredi 18. korpusa njemačke 14. armije prešli poljsko -slovačku granicu u blizini prijevoja Dukla. [72] Vlada Sovjetskog Saveza izdala je direktivu br. 1355-279ss kojom je odobrena "Plan reorganizacije kopnenih snaga Crvene armije 1939–1940", [72] koji je regulisao detaljne prenose divizija i ažurirao teritorijalne planove raspoređivanja za sve 173 buduće borbene divizije Crvene armije. [72] Osim reorganizirane pješadije, povećan je i broj korpusne artiljerije i rezerve topništva Vrhovne vrhovne komande, dok je broj službenih jedinica, pozadinskih jedinica i institucija trebao biti smanjen. [72] Do večeri 2. septembra, na poljsko -sovjetskoj granici provedene su pojačane mjere odbrane i sigurnosti. [72] Prema uputstvu br. 1720 komandanta graničnih trupa u Beloruskom vojnom okrugu, svi odredi su postavljeni u stalni borbeni status. [72]

Vlade savezničkih Britanije i Francuske objavile su Njemačkoj rat 3. septembra, ali niti su poduzele dogovorenu vojnu akciju niti su pružile značajnu podršku Poljskoj. [73] [74] Uprkos značajnom poljskom uspjehu u borbama na lokalnim granicama, njemačka tehnička, operativna i brojčana nadmoć na kraju je zahtijevala povlačenje svih poljskih snaga s granica prema kraćim linijama obrane u Varšavi i Lwówu. Istog dana (3. septembra), novi sovjetski ambasador u Berlinu Aleksej Škvartsev predao je akreditivno pismo Adolfu Hitleru. [72] Tokom ceremonije inicijacije, Shkvartsev i Hitler su se međusobno uvjeravali u svoju opredijeljenost da ispune uslove sporazuma o nenapadanju. [72] Ministar vanjskih poslova Joachim von Ribbentrop naručio je njemačkoj ambasadi u Moskvi procjenu i izvještaj o vjerovatnoći sovjetskih namjera za invaziju Crvene armije na Poljsku. [72]

Dana 4. septembra 1939. sve jedinice njemačke mornarice u sjevernom Atlantskom okeanu primile su naredbu "da slijede Murmansk, najsjevernijim kursom". [72] Istog dana, Centralni komitet Komunističke partije i vlada Sovjetskog Saveza odobrili su naredbe narodnog komesara odbrane Klimenta Vorošilova da se odgodi penzionisanje i otpuštanje pripadnika Crvene armije i mladih zapovjednika za mjesec dana, te da se započne potpunu obuku za sve odrede i osoblje PVO u Lenjingradu, Moskvi, Harkovu, Bjelorusiji i Kijevskom vojnom okrugu. [72]

Narodni komesar inostranih poslova Vjačeslav Molotov primio je 5. septembra 1939. njemačkog ambasadora Friedricha Wernera von der Schulenburga. [72] Na ambasadorov upit u vezi s mogućim raspoređivanjem Crvene armije u Poljsku, Molotov je odgovorio da je sovjetska vlada "definitivno će morati početi određene radnje" u pravo vrijeme. "Ali vjerujemo da ovaj trenutak još nije došao" i "svaka žurba može pokvariti stvari i olakšati okupljanje protivnika". [72]

Dana 10. septembra, vrhovni komandant Poljske, maršal Edward Rydz-Śmigły, naredio je opće povlačenje na jugoistok prema rumunjskom mostobranu. [75] Ubrzo nakon toga, nacistički njemački zvaničnici dodatno su pozvali svoje sovjetske kolege da podrže svoj dogovoreni dio i napadnu Poljsku s istoka. Molotov i ambasador von der Schulenburg raspravljali su o tom pitanju više puta, ali je Sovjetski Savez ipak odgodio invaziju na istočnu Poljsku, dok je bio okupiran događajima koji su se odigrali na Dalekom istoku u vezi s tekućim graničnim sporovima s Japanom. Sovjetskom Savezu je trebalo vremena za mobilizaciju Crvene armije i iskoristio je diplomatsku prednost čekanja na napad nakon što se Poljska raspala. [76] [77]

Dana 14. septembra, s obzirom na propast Poljske, prve izjave o sukobu s Poljskom pojavile su se u sovjetskoj štampi. [78] Neobjavljeni rat između Sovjetskog Saveza i Japanskog carstva u bitkama za Khalkhin Gol okončan je sporazumom Molotov -Tojo, potpisanim 15. septembra nakon što je prekid vatre stupio na snagu 16. septembra. [79] [78] Dana 17. septembra, Molotov je uručio objavu rata Wacławu Grzybowskom, poljskom ambasadoru u Moskvi:

Varšava, kao glavni grad Poljske, više ne postoji. Poljska vlada se raspala i više ne pokazuje nikakve znake djelovanja. To znači da su poljska država i njena vlada de facto prestale postojati. U skladu s tim, sporazumi sklopljeni između SSSR -a i Poljske izgubili su na snazi. Prepuštena sama sebi i lišena vodstva, Poljska je postala pogodno polje za sve vrste opasnosti i iznenađenja, koja mogu predstavljati prijetnju SSSR -u. Iz tih razloga sovjetska vlada, koja je do sada bila neutralna, ne može više zadržati neutralan stav i zanemariti ove činjenice. . Pod ovim okolnostima, sovjetska vlada je naredila Vrhovnoj komandi Crvene armije da naredi trupama da pređu granicu i da pod svoju zaštitu uzmu život i imovinu stanovništva Zapadne Ukrajine i Zapadne Bjelorusije. - Narodni komesar za vanjske poslove SSSR -a V. Molotov, 17. septembra 1939 [80]

Molotov je putem javnog radijskog emitiranja izjavio da su svi ugovori između Sovjetskog Saveza i Poljske poništeni, da je poljska vlada napustila svoj narod jer je poljska država faktički prestala postojati. [31] [81] Istog dana, Crvena armija je prešla granicu s Poljskom. [1] [76]


Poljaci odvojeno: Putin, Poljska i nacističko-sovjetski pakt

Geoffrey Roberts je emeritus profesor historije na University College Cork, Nacionalni univerzitet Irske. Njegova posljednja knjiga (u koautorstvu Marin Folly i Oleg Rzheshevsky) je Churchill i Staljin: Ratni drugovi tokom Drugog svjetskog rata.

Kako se bliži 75. godišnjica završetka Drugog svjetskog rata, dvije od tih glavnih žrtava rata & ndash Poljska i Rusija & ndash ponovno su uvučene u vrlo emotivan spor o njegovom porijeklu. U središtu stvari je višegodišnja kontroverza oko nacističko-sovjetskog pakta od 23. avgusta 1939.

Tu polemiku započeo je predsjednik Vladimir Putin kada ga je na konferenciji za novinare u Moskvi 19. decembra pitao o rezoluciji Evropskog parlamenta & rsquos o 80. godišnjici izbijanja Drugog svjetskog rata. Putin je ocijenio rezoluciju neprihvatljivom jer izjednačava Sovjetski Savez i nacističku Njemačku i optužuje njene autore da su cinični i da ne poznaju istoriju. On je umjesto toga istakao Minhenski sporazum iz septembra 1938. godine i učešće Poljske u rasparčavanju Čehoslovačke. Sovjetsko-njemački ugovor o nenapadanju nije bio jedini takav sporazum koji je Hitler postigao s drugim državama. Da, rekao je Putin, postojali su tajni protokoli koji su dijelili Poljsku između Njemačke i SSSR -a, ali su sovjetske trupe ušle u Poljsku tek nakon što se njena vlada slomila.

Ovo nije prvi put da Putin iznosi takve argumente. Mnogo je sličnih riječi iznio 2009. godine na 70. godišnjicu izbijanja rata. Ali njegov ton je tada bio pomirljiviji nego borbeni. Na komemorativnom događaju u Gdanjsku, Putin je naglasio zajedničke borbe Poljaka i Rusa i pozvao da se izbijanje rata ispita u svoj njegovoj složenosti i raznolikosti. Krive su bile sve zemlje, a ne samo Sovjetski Savez: & ldquoit mora se priznati da su svi pokušaji u razdoblju od 1934. do 1939. godine da se udovolje nacistima raznim sporazumima i paktovima bili moralno neprihvatljivi i praktično besmisleni, kao i štetni i opasni. & Rdquo

Odgovarajući Putinu, tadašnji poljski premijer, Donald Tusk, naglasio je da je 1. septembra 1939. njegovu zemlju napala Njemačka, a zatim dvije sedmice kasnije napao Sovjetski Savez. No, Tusk je također naglasio da, iako & ldquotruthruth može biti bolna, ne bi trebala nikoga ponižavati. & Rdquo

Dan nakon konferencije za novinare u Moskvi, Putin se obratio čelnicima Zajednice nezavisnih država na sastanku u Sankt Peterburgu sazvanom radi razgovora o pripremama za 75. godišnjicu. Putin je iskoristio priliku da dostavi dugu analizu onoga što je dovelo do izbijanja rata u septembru 1939. godine, uključujući detaljne citate iz mnogih diplomatskih dokumenata.

Jedan dokument koji je zapeo za oko Putinu & rsquos bio je depeša iz septembra 1938. od Jozefa Lipskog, poljskog ambasadora u Berlinu, u izvještaju o razgovoru s Hitlerom. Tokom razgovora Hitler je rekao da razmišlja o rješavanju jevrejskog pitanja tako što će ih emigrirati u koloniju. Lipski je odgovorio da će mu, ako Hitler pronađe rješenje za jevrejsko pitanje, Poljaci sagraditi prekrasan spomenik u Varšavi. & ldquoKakvi su to ljudi koji vode takve razgovore sa Hitlerom? & quot, upitao je Putin. Ista vrsta, rekao je on, koji sada skrnavi grobove i spomenike sovjetskih vojnika koji su oslobodili Evropu od nacista.

Glavna poanta Putinove i rsquosove trave kroz britanske, francuske, njemačke, poljske i sovjetske arhive bila je pokazati da su sve države tridesetih godina poslovale s nacistima, a ne najmanje Poljska, koja je tražila približavanje Hitleru kao dio antisovjetskog alijansa. Putin je ovu istoriju povezao sa današnjom politikom: & ldquoRusija se koristi za plašenje ljudi. Bio to carski, sovjetski ili današnji & rsquos & ndash ništa se nije promijenilo. Nije važno kakva je Rusija Rusija i obrazloženje ostaje. & Rdquo

Putin je tridesetih godina energično branio sovjetsku vanjsku politiku. Prema riječima ruskog predsjednika, Moskva je tražila savez za kolektivnu sigurnost protiv Hitlera, ali su njeni napori odbijeni, što je najvažnije tokom čehoslovačke krize 1938. godine, kada su Sovjeti bili spremni za rat u odbrani zemlje, pod uvjetom da je to učinila i Francuska. Ali Francuzi su svoje postupke povezali sa djelovanjem Poljaka, a Varšava je užurbano planirala da zauzme neku čehoslovačku teritoriju. Po Putinovom mišljenju, Drugi svjetski rat mogao bi biti spriječen da su se države suprotstavile Hitleru 1938.

Vezano za nacističko-sovjetski pakt, iako je Putin prihvatio da postoji tajni protokol, sugerirao je da bi u arhivama zapadnih država mogli biti skriveni povjerljivi ugovori koje su sklopili s Hitlerom. Također je ponovio da Sovjetski Savez zapravo nije napao Poljsku, dodajući da je akcija Crvene armije & rsquos spasila mnoge Jevreje od istrebljenja od strane nacista.

Putin se vratio na temu podrijetla rata & rsquos na sastanku Odbora Ministarstva odbrane Rusije & rsquos 24. decembra: & ldquoDa, potpisan je Pakt Molotov-Ribbentrop, a postojao je i tajni protokol koji je definirao sfere utjecaja. Ali šta su evropske zemlje radile prije toga? Isto. Svi su radili iste stvari & rdquo. No, ono što ga je najviše pogodilo, rekao je Putin svojim kolegama, bio je Lipski izvještaj: & ldquoTo kopile! Ta antisemitska svinja & ndash nemam drugih riječi & rdquo.

Da budemo pošteni prema Putinu, njegovo viđenje historije ima više od upiranja prstom u Poljsku i zapad. Također je identificirao dublje uzroke Drugog svjetskog rata, uključujući kazneni Versajski mirovni sporazum koji je ohrabrio ldquoa radikalno i revanšističko raspoloženje & rdquo u Njemačkoj, te stvaranje novih država koje su dovele do mnogih sukoba, posebno u Čehoslovačkoj, koja je sadržavala 3,5 miliona -jaka nemačka manjina.

Prvi odgovor Poljske na bijesne filipse Putina rsquos bila je izjava njenog ministarstva vanjskih poslova 21. decembra, u kojoj se izražava nevjerica u izjave ruskog predsjednika & rsquos. Poljska je, kako je saopćilo ministarstvo vanjskih poslova, imala uravnoteženu politiku prema Njemačkoj i Sovjetskom Savezu 1930-ih, potpisujući pakte o nenapadanju s obje zemlje. & ldquoUprkos miroljubivoj politici koju je vodila Republika Poljska, Sovjetski Savez je poduzeo izravne korake za pokretanje rata i istovremeno počinio masovne zločine & rdquo.

According the Polish foreign ministry the crucial chronology of events was that in January 1939 the Germans made their claims against Poland in mid-April the Soviet ambassador offered Berlin political co-operation and at the end of April Hitler repudiated the German-Polish non-aggression pact in August the Nazi-Soviet pact was signed in September Germany and the USSR invaded Poland and then signed a Boundary and Friendship Treaty that formalised Poland&rsquos partition.

Among Soviet crimes against Poland was the mass repression of Poles in the territories occupied by the Red Army, including 107,000 arrests, 380, 000 deportations and, in spring 1940, 22,000 executions of Polish POWs and officials at Katyn and other murder sites.

On 29 December 2019 Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, issued a statement, noting that Poland was the war&rsquos first victim, &ldquothe first to experience the armed aggression of both Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia, and the first that fought in defense of a free Europe.&rdquo The Molotov-Ribbentrop pact was not a non-aggression agreement but a military and political alliance of two dictators and their totalitarian regimes. &ldquoWithout Stalin&rsquos complicity in the partitioning of Poland, and without the natural resources that Stalin supplied to Hitler, the Nazi German crime machine would not have taken control of Europe. Thanks to Stalin, Hitler could conquer new countries with impunity, imprison Jews from all over the continent in ghettos and prepare the Holocaust&rdquo.

Morawiecki pulled no punches in relation to Putin: &ldquoPresident Putin has lied about Poland on numerous occasions, and he has always done so deliberately.&rdquo According to Morawiecki, Putin&rsquos &ldquoslander&rdquo was designed to distract attention from political setbacks suffered by the Russian President, such as US sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 oil pipeline project and the World Anti-Doping Agency&rsquos banning of Russia from international sporting events for four years.

All states like to present themselves as victims rather than perpetrators and this not the first time Poland and Russia have clashed over the Nazi-Soviet pact. The piquancy of the polemics is obviously related to the dire state of Russian-Western relations and to the presence in Warsaw of a radical nationalist government.

But how should we evaluate the historical content of these exchanges? My first book, published in 1989 on the 50th anniversary of the Nazi-Soviet pact, was The Unholy Alliance: Stalin&rsquos Pact with Hitler. Since then I have written many more books and articles about the Nazi-Soviet pact. My research has led me to conclude that Putin is broadly right in relation to the history of Soviet foreign policy in the 1930s but deficient in his analysis of the Nazi-Soviet pact.

After Hitler came to power in 1933 the Soviets did strive for collective security alliances to contain Nazi aggression and expansionism. Moscow did stand by Czechoslovakia in 1938 and was prepared to go war with Germany.

After Munich the Soviets retreated into isolation but Hitler&rsquos occupation of Prague in March 1939 presented an opportunity to relaunch their collective security campaign. In April Moscow proposed an Anglo-Soviet-French triple alliance that would guarantee the security of all European states under threat from Hitler, including Poland.

Some historians have questioned the sincerity of Moscow&rsquos triple alliance proposal but extensive evidence from the Soviet archives shows that it was Stalin&rsquos preferred option until quite late in the day. The problem was that Britain and France dragged their feet during the negotiations and as war grew closer so did Stalin doubts about the utility of a Soviet-Western alliance. Fearful the Soviet Union would be left to fight Hitler alone while Britain and France stood on the sidelines, Stalin decided to do a deal with Hitler -that kept the USSR out of the coming war and provided some guarantees for Soviet security.

The Soviets were not as proactive as they might have been in trying to persuade the British and French to accept their proposals. Some scholars argue this was because the Soviets were busy wooing the Germans. However, until August 1939 all the approaches came from the German side, which was desperate to disrupt the triple alliance negotiations. The political overture of April 1939 mentioned in the Polish foreign ministry statement is a case in point: the initiative came from the Germans not the Soviets.

One state that Moscow did actively pursue in 1939 was Poland. The bad blood in Soviet-Polish relations notwithstanding, after Munich the two states attempted to improve relations. When Hitler turned against Poland in spring 1939 Moscow made many approaches to Warsaw, trying to persuade the Poles to sign up to its triple alliance project. But Warsaw did not want or think it needed an alliance with the USSR given that it had the backing of Britain and France.

The failure of this incipient Polish-Soviet détente sealed the fate of the triple alliance negotiations, which broke down when the British and French were unable to guarantee Warsaw&rsquos consent to the entry of the Red Army into Poland in the event of war with Germany.

After the signature of the Nazi-Soviet pact there was extensive political, economic and military co-operation between the Soviet Union and Germany. Most people see this as a tactical manoeuvre by Stalin to gain time to prepare for a German attack. However, I have argued that in 1939-1940 Stalin contemplated the possibility of long-term co-existence with Nazi Germany.

Putin makes the point that Stalin did not sully himself with meeting Hitler, unlike British, French and Polish leaders. True, but Stalin received Nazi Foreign Minister Ribbentrop twice - in August and September 1939 - and in November 1940 he sent his foreign minister, Molotov, to Berlin to negotiate a new Nazi-Soviet pact with Hitler. It was the failure of those negotiations that set Soviet-German relations on the path to war.

The first clause of the secret protocol attached to the Soviet-German non-aggression treaty concerned the Baltic states. Throughout the triple alliance negotiations Moscow&rsquos major security concern was a German military advance across the Baltic coastal lands to Leningrad. With the signature of the Nazi-Soviet pact that Baltic door to German expansion was locked by a spheres of influence agreement that allocated Latvia, Estonia and Finland to the Soviet sphere. Lithuania remained in Germany&rsquos sphere but was transferred to the Soviets in September 1939.

It was the second clause of the protocol that divided Poland into Soviet and German spheres but this should not be seen as a definite decision to partition Poland, though that possibility was certainly present. The protocol limited German expansion into Poland but did not specify the two states would annex their spheres of influence. The actions of both states in that respect would be determined by the course of the German-Polish war. In the event, Poland was rapidly crushed by the Germans, while the British and French did little to aid their ally except declare war on Germany. It was in those circumstances that Berlin pressed the Soviets to occupy Eastern Poland. Stalin was not ready, politically or militarily, to take that step but he knew that if the Red Army did not occupy the territory then the Wehrmacht would.

Putin glosses over the fact that the Red Army&rsquos entry into Poland was a massive military operation involving a half million troops. Large-scale clashes with Polish forces were averted only because Poland&rsquos commander-in-chief ordered his troops not to fire on Red Army. Even so, the Red Army suffered 3000 casualties including a thousand dead.

Often accused of parroting the Soviet line, Putin did not invoke the most potent argument that Moscow used to rationalise its attack on Poland, which was that the Red Army was entering the country to liberate Western Belorussia and Western Ukraine.

Poland&rsquos eastern territories had been secured as a result of the Russo-Polish war of 1919-1920. These territories lay east of the Curzon Line &ndash the ethnographical frontier between Russia and Poland demarcated at Versailles. The majority of the population were Jews, Belorussians and Ukrainians and many welcomed the Red Army as liberators from Polish rule. Such enthusiasm did not outlast the violent process of sovietisation through which the occupied territories were incorporated into the USSR as part of a unified Belorussia and a unified Ukraine.

During the Second World War Stalin insisted that the Curzon Line would be the border between Poland and the USSR &ndash a position that was eventually accepted by Britain and the United States. As compensation for its territorial losses Poland was given East Prussia and other parts of Germany. The result of this transfer was the brutal displacement of millions of Germans from their ancestral lands.

History is rarely as simple as polemicizing politicians would like it to be. Both sides of the Russo-Polish dispute have some valid arguments neither has a monopoly of what is a bitter truth. The Nazi-Soviet pact is a fact but so is Polish collaboration with Hitler in the 1930s. The Soviet Union did cooperate with Nazi Germany but it also played the main role in the defeat of Hitler. Stalin was responsible for vast mass repressions but he was not a racist or genocidal dictator and nor was he a warmonger. The Red Army&rsquos invasion of Eastern Poland was reprehensible but it also unified Belorussia and Ukraine. During the Second World War the Red Army was responsible for many atrocities but it did not commit mass murder and it did, together with its allies, liberate Europe from the Nazis.

Politicians will always use the past for political purposes. But in 2009 Putin came quite close to a balanced view about the Nazi-Soviet pact, as did Tusk in his measured rejoinder. Let&rsquos hope that Poland and Russia can find their way back to such middle ground.

The victory over Nazi Germany required enormous sacrifices by both countries. Surely it is possible to celebrate this common victory with dignity and with respect for differences about its complicated history.


How Stalin and Hitler Carved Up Poland (And Changed History Forever)

The nonagression pact paved the way for both countries to focus on domesic and expansionist priorities.

Ključna tačka: Niether country trusted each other. But they also wanted to give themselves time to attend to other matters (and build up militarily).

On August 23, 1939, Soviet Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, V.P. Potemkin, waited at the Moscow Airport for Joachim von Ribbentrop, Foreign Minister of Nazi Germany. He warmly greeted the former champagne salesman and then whisked him away for a clandestine meeting at the Kremlin.

Waiting to receive the emissary were Soviet strongman Josef Stalin and his granite-faced foreign minister, Vyacheslav Molotov. They concluded what became known as the Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact. Included were provisions governing the transfer of raw materials from the Soviet Union in exchange for manufactured goods from Germany. But, more importantly, the pact was a protocol establishing each signatory’s sphere of influence. This included Poland. Hitler and Stalin did not merely intend to partition their neighbor, they meant to wipe the country off the map. The Germans would begin to close the vise on September 1, advancing to Brest-Litovsk. The Soviets would close the eastern jaws on September 17 until Poland was gobbled up. As an added inducement for Stalin’s compliance, Hitler agreed that Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Bessarabia, which was on the eastern edge of Romania, would be included in the Soviet sphere of influence.

This first appeared earlier and is being reposted due to reader interest.

The pact was signed at 2 am on the 24th. The two dictators not only sealed Poland’s fate but set in motion a chain of events that would soon engulf the globe in World War II.

Bottles of champagne were opened to toast the historic moment. Stalin raised his glass to Hitler’s health. “A fine fellow,” remarked the Soviet dictator. Yet, 21 months later the pact would prove to be just another scrap of paper, for Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union would collide in a titanic struggle that was to become the greatest land war in history.

The Rise of Fascism, the Decline of the Allied Powers

By 1939, Italy, once in the Allied camp, was now a Fascist power under the sway of a swaggering brute named Benito Mussolini. Another former Allied power, Japan, was now militaristic, a self-serving belligerent selling itself to the masses of Asia as their deliverer from the bondage of the white man, while masking the brutal reality of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. The United States seemed hopelessly absorbed in its delusion of self-quarantine and was determined not to mire itself in European politics.

This left Britain and France. Heart and soul of the Allied effort during the Great War, they were able to maintain the façade as power brokers at Versailles but emerged from the four-year contest of attrition as had many of their soldiers—as permanent invalids. And while they were hardly terminal, their economies were still unwell, playing host to cankers of damage and debt in addition to being socially scarred from the unremitting bloodletting of the trenches, they hobbled along for the next 10 years until the Great Depression.

France, in particular, never seemed to emerge from either. Indeed, it seemed to seek solace in a bunker mentality induced by the Maginot Line, that impenetrable shield of France, a marvel of 20th-century construction with its underground railways, air conditioning system, and fixed fortifications which proved little better than monuments during the coming era of mobile warfare.

Hitler seemed to sense the weakness, testing the waters on March 7, 1936, with his occupation of the demilitarized Rhineland in direct contravention of the spirit of the Versailles and Locarno Treaties.

Common belief holds that the French reaction or lack thereof to the German provocation was owing to a lack of intestinal fortitude, girded by nightmares of Verdun. A policy memorandum of Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden dated March 8, 1936, shows the British government counseling diplomatic action, urging the French not to scale up to a military riposte to which French Foreign Minister Pierre Flandin stated that France would not act alone. Rather, Paris would take the matter to the League of Nations.

There is, however, another side to this story: the lingering effect of the Great Depression. The French were concerned with their economy and currency. They desperately needed investors like Britain and, in particular, the United States to help bolster the franc. Foreign investment in the franc was hardly possible if Paris was mobilizing for war.

Hitler had won his game of brinkmanship. With just a couple of untried battalions, he had faced down 100 French divisions, throwing cold water on the doubts of his nervous generals and sending his stature soaring among masses of the German people while exposing the fragility of Anglo-French cohesion and the debility of the Versailles and Locarno Treaties.

Chipping Away at the European Security Order

Such trysts of gamesmanship played by an opportunistic Hitler brought Europe to the brink. His understanding of history spurred him to isolate that colossal power to the East, Soviet Russia. The Hitler-Stalin honeymoon fractured the European balance of power, removed the Red Army as a counterweight to German ambitions, compromised Moscow’s membership in the League of Nations, and revisited British and French ostracizing of the Soviet colossus from European politics at Versailles.

Adolf Hitler assumed the chancellorship of Germany on January 30, 1933. He relied on diplomacy to advance the interests of Germany because he lacked the military muscle for a more belligerent posture. For instance, he ended the clandestine Soviet-German military cooperation of the 1920s. Yet on May 5, Germany and the Soviet Union renewed the 1926 Treaty of Berlin. On January 26, 1934, Hitler signed a nonaggression pact with Poland. On September 18, 1934, the Soviets joined the League of Nations, Germany having withdrawn from the diplomatic fraternity the previous October.

By forging a nonaggression pact with Poland, Hitler prevented Warsaw and Paris from reaching an agreement that would have sandwiched a prostrate Germany and blocked any potential deal between Warsaw and Moscow. This, of course, raised serious doubts in the Kremlin as to German-Polish intentions. The idea of collective security proved attractive, hence Moscow’s long overdue membership in the League.

Yet, by the Spanish Civil War it was abundantly clear that Rome and Berlin intended to spread the Fascist creed like a plague across Europe. German and Italian involvement in Spain’s conflict, in the face of British and French neutrality, seemed another step toward the eventual isolation of the Soviet Union. Moscow, then, threw its support to the Republicans against Francisco Franco’s Nationalists. For Germany, Italy, and Soviet Russia, the contentious Iberian Peninsula offered that battlefield laboratory for new weapons and tactics in preparation for the main event that was sure to come.

Five years after assuming power, Hitler felt more confident, having successfully affected the Anschluss with his homeland Austria on March 13, 1938, followed seven months later by adding the Sudetenland to the Reich from a friendless Czechoslovakia. Too late did the British and French understand the meaning of “no more territorial claims” when Hitler snatched Bohemia and Moravia on March 14-15, 1939, helping to complete the destruction of Czechoslovakia.

Thus the stage was set for the run-up to world war.

The “White” Directive

By March 16, 1939, Hitler had positioned Poland squarely between the German jaws of East Prussia to the north and the satellite state of Slovakia to the south. He now controlled the vaunted Skoda Works and added Czech tanks and guns to the Wehrmacht. Romania and Yugoslavia, arms customers of the Czechs, now had another supplier following Berlin’s hostile takeover. However, Hitler was not resting on his laurels.

On March 19, a “request” was forwarded to Vilnius. Lithuania was to hand over Memelland, which it had occupied since 1923, to the Reich and do so without delay. Four days later, Lithuania complied.

On March 21, Ribbentrop hosted the Polish ambassador, Josef Lipski, in Berlin. Hitler’s huckster urged the Polish diplomat to accept the deal offered the previous October. Danzig was to be returned to the Reich, a deal that included road and rail connections across the Polish Corridor. In return, Hitler would recognize the Corridor and Poland’s western borders. To sweeten the deal, territory was promised at Ukraine’s expense, a carrot to be finalized at some later date.

Lipski took the German offer back to Warsaw. He returned to Berlin on the 25th armed with Colonel Joseph Beck’s reply. The Polish Foreign Minister understood the machinations of the Führer. Caving in now would only invite another set of demands. Beck rebuffed Hitler’s offer, intimating that continued German pressure over Danzig would invite conflict. It was clear by the 31st that Polish resolve had been stiffened by London and Paris. On that day, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain addressed the House of Commons, assuring Warsaw that, in the event of a German attack, Britain and France would stand by the Poles. That evening, Hitler ordered Wilhelm Keitel, chief of the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (German high command), to prepare for Poland. On April 3, Keitel issued a directive known as “White,” ordering the German armed forces to be ready for action no later than September 1.


German-Soviet Pact

The German-Soviet Pact, signed in August 1939, paved the way for the joint invasion and occupation of Poland that September. By signing the agreement, Hitler avoided the threat of a major two-front war. Stalin was permitted subsequently to expand Soviet rule over the Baltic states (Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia) and parts of Romania and Finland. The pact was an agreement of convenience between the two bitter ideological enemies. It permitted Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union to carve up spheres of influence in eastern Europe, while pledging not to attack each other for 10 years. Less than two years later, however, Hitler launched an invasion of the Soviet Union.

Key Facts

This agreement often is commonly referred to as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, after the two foreign ministers who negotiated the deal. It is also known as the Nazi-Soviet Pact, or the Hitler-Stalin Pact.

The diplomatic arrangement included a 10-year non-aggression pact between the two countries, economic cooperation, and territorial expansion.

The pact prepared the way for World War II.

Ovaj sadržaj je dostupan na sljedećim jezicima

The German-Soviet Pact is also known as the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact after the two foreign ministers who negotiated the agreement: German foreign minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and Soviet foreign minister Vyacheslav Molotov. The pact had two parts. An economic agreement, signed on August 19, 1939, provided that Germany would exchange manufactured goods for Soviet raw materials. Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union also signed a ten-year nonaggression pact on August 23, 1939, in which each signatory promised not to attack the other.

The German-Soviet Pact enabled Germany to attack Poland on September 1, 1939, without fear of Soviet intervention. On September 3, 1939, Britain and France, having guaranteed to protect Poland's borders five months earlier, declared war on Germany. These events marked the beginning of World War II.

The nonaggression pact of August 23 contained a secret protocol that provided for the partition of Poland and the rest of eastern Europe into Soviet and German spheres of interest.

In accordance with this plan, the Soviet army occupied and annexed eastern Poland in the autumn of 1939. On November 30, 1939, the Soviet Union attacked Finland, precipitating a four-month winter war after which the Soviet Union annexed Finnish territory borderlands, particularly near Leningrad. With German indulgence, the Soviet Union also moved to secure its sphere of interest in eastern Europe in the summer of 1940. The Soviets occupied and incorporated the Baltic states and seized the Romanian provinces of northern Bukovina and Bessarabia.

After the Germans defeated France in June 1940, German diplomats worked to secure Germany's ties in southeastern Europe. Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia all joined the Axis alliance in November 1940. During the spring of 1941, Hitler initiated his eastern European allies into plans to invade the Soviet Union.

Hitler had always regarded the German-Soviet nonaggression pact as a tactical and temporary maneuver. On December 18, 1940, he signed Directive 21 (code-named Operation Barbarossa), the first operational order for the invasion of the Soviet Union. From the beginning of operational planning, German military and police authorities intended to wage a war of annihilation against the Communist state as well as the Jews of the Soviet Union, whom they characterized as forming the "racial basis" for the Soviet state.

German forces invaded the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941, less than two years after the German-Soviet Pact was signed.


The Nazi-Soviet Pact: Hitler’s Ultimate Triumph

To fulfill his territorial ambitions in Europe, Hitler agreed to sign a pact with the Soviet Union in 1939. (Image: Bundesarchiv/Heinrich Hoffmann/CC BY-SA 3.0/Public domain)

A Polish Problem

Once again, one saw the usual drumroll: German minorities mistreated by the Polish government, some sort of representation for the German minority had to be made, the German population wasn’t going to stand for more of this. At this point, so grave was the threat that Franklin Roosevelt took the extraordinary step of writing a public letter to Hitler, in which there was a laundry list of states that he wanted Hitler to say that Germany wasn’t going to attack.

And Hitler got up in the Reichstag, now obviously all Nazi, and gave one of his most ironic and sarcastic speeches. In that speech, Hitler made no promises, and he continued to assert that Danzig wasn’t worth a war he wanted some solution to this now new Polish problem.

Nonetheless, he also gave orders to his military “to attack Poland at the earliest possible opportunity.” So, while publicly protesting that he’s trying to find a way for peace, Poland now becomes first on the agenda.

Ovo je transkript iz video serije A History of Hitler’s Empire, 2nd Edition. Pazi sad, Wondrium.

The Worsening Conditions in Europe

Pressure was mounting on Neville Chamberlain’s government. Would it indeed honor its obligation to Poland? The key to the diplomatic situation in the summer and early fall of 1939, however, wasn’t in London the key was in Moscow.

The British and French had tried at various points over the summer to warn the Soviets about the imminent danger. But they were low-level contacts Chamberlain certainly didn’t fly off to Moscow to talk with Stalin. Meanwhile, the Germans took this up at a much higher level.

The Nazi Offer to the Soviet Union

German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop had begun to send feelers to his counterpart in the Soviet Union, Molotov, about the possibility of some sort of deal between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. Finally, Ribbentrop offered the possibility of a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union.

For Hitler, this pact made no ideological sense whatsoever. These were the two great ideological enemies. If Hitler was determined to smash Judeo-Bolshevism in the Soviet Union, Stalin saw Nazi Germany as the incarnation of evil. It was the great fascist power that was the greatest threat to Socialism in the world. But in a practical sense, there was a good deal of compelling evidence to support signing such a pact.

Hitler’s Aggressive Determination

Germany sealed the deal with the Soviet Union and pushed Europe toward the Second World War. (Image: Bundesarchiv/CC-BY-SA/3.0/Public domain)

Hitler, who was determined by this point to go to war with Poland, believed that a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union would act as a deterrent to the West. England and France wouldn’t dare intervene if the Soviet Union were already in the same boat as Nazi Germany.

And, of course, at the same time and more obviously, it would remove the danger of a two-front war for Germany. And Hitler was determined to avoid this at all cost.

Stalin’s Stance on the Non-Aggression Pact

For Stalin, the pact also made sense. Number one, it would buy time. In 1938, the Soviet Union and Stalin had initiated a massive purge of the Red Army. Not just the leadership, but a purge that went all the way down to company level, inserting political commissars to make sure the army was under direct Bolshevist/Communist control.

International intelligence experts believed that the Soviet military was extremely weak as a result, and so, this would buy time to rebuild his military. It would also provide territorial and strategic advantages in Eastern Europe.

The Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact

On August 24, 1939, Germany and Russia astonished the world by signing a non-aggression pact—the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, or the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact—in Moscow, pledging not to go to war with one another. There were secret clauses, which divided Eastern Europe into spheres of influence.

Germany was to get Lithuania and Vilne the Soviet Union Finland, Estonia, Latvia. They agreed on a partition of Poland. Germans would move in from the west, the Soviets from the east. They couldn’t agree about Romania, which had rich oil fields, but the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was the death knell for the state of Poland—and for peace in Europe.

The Unpreparedness of Germany

Despite a four-year plan that began in 1936 to build the German economy, it wasn’t ready for a long war. It could fight a limited war, such as one against Poland. It reflected Hitler’s conviction that the West wouldn’t fight. The Germans had followed a policy of armaments in breadth, not in depth, so that they had lots of different sorts of military equipment, but it hadn’t been built in any sort of depth to sustain a long war.

On September 1, 1939, the German population was awakened to a news bulletin that the Poles had attacked a German radio station on the frontier, and that German troops had been responding. In fact, the Germans had launched a massive invasion of Poland that, within a month, would bring the defeat of the Polish military.

A Shock for Hitler

To Hitler’s great astonishment, Britain and France decided to honor their obligations. Chamberlain issued an ultimatum to Germany: move out of Poland and then we can talk about the corridor, we can talk about Danzig. Hitler refused.

The Polish campaign was over in a month. The Poles fought heroically against overwhelming German force. Warsaw was bombed, signaling already that this wouldn’t be a war like the First War, where there was a distinction between front and the homefront.

Now civilians were already on the front line with the bombing of Warsaw. What Hitler had believed would be a short engagement against Poland now threatened to be the European-wide war which he did not believe would happen and was not prepared to fight.

On August 24, 1939, Germany and Russia signed a non-aggression pact.

According to the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact , Germany was to get Lithuania and Vilne the Soviet Union Finland, Estonia, Latvia. Germany and Russia agreed on a partition of Poland.

Hitler believed that a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union would act as a deterrent to the West.


BIBLIOGRAFIJA

Gorodetsky, Gabriel. The Grand Delusion: Stalin and the German Invasion of Russia. 1999.

Ierace, Francis A. America and the Nazi-Soviet Pact. 1978.

Kolasky, John. Partners in Tyranny. 1990.

Read, Anthony, and David Fisher. The Deadly Embrace: Hitler, Stalin, and the Nazi-Soviet Pact, 1939–1941. 1988.

Roberts, Geoffrey. The Unholy Alliance: Stalin's Pact with Hitler. 1989.

Suziedelis, Saulius, ed. History and Commemoration in the Baltic: The Nazi-Soviet Pact, 1939–1989. 1989.


NAZI-SOVIET PACT OF 1939

The Nazi-Soviet Pact is the name given to the Treaty of Non-Aggression signed by Ribbentrop for Germany and Molotov for the USSR on August 23,1939.

In August 1939, following the failure of attempts to negotiate a treaty with Great Britain and France for mutual assistance and military support to protect the USSR from an invasion by Adolf Hitler, the Soviet Union abandoned its attempts to achieve collective security agreements, which was the basis of Maxim Maximovich Litvinov's foreign policy during the 1930s. Instead, Soviet leaders sought an accommodation with Germany. For German politicians, the dismissal of Litvinov and the appointment of Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov as commissar for foreign affairs on May 3, 1939, was a signal that the USSR was seeking a rapprochement. The traditional interpretation that Molotov was pro-German, and that his appointment was a direct preparation for the pact, has been called into question. It seems more likely that in appointing Molotov, Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was prepared to seize any opportunity that presented itself to improve Soviet security.

Diplomatic contact with Germany on economic matters had been maintained during the negotiations with Great Britain and France, and in June and July of 1939, Molotov was not indifferent to initial German approaches for an improvement in political relations. On August 15, the German ambassador proposed that Joachim von Ribbentrop, the German foreign minister, should visit Moscow for direct negotiations with Stalin and Molotov, who in response suggested a non-aggression pact.

Ribbentrop flew to Moscow on August 23, and the Treaty of Nonaggression was signed in a few hours. By its terms the Soviet Union and Germany undertook not to attack each other either alone or in conjunction with other powers and to remain neutral if the other power became involved in a war with a third party. They further agreed not to participate in alliances aimed at the other state and to resolve disputes and conflicts by consultation and arbitration. With Hitler about to attack Poland, the usual provision in treaties of this nature, allowing one signatory to opt out if the other committed aggression against a third party, was missing. The agreement was for a ten – year period, and became active as soon as signed, rather than on ratification.

As significant as the treaty, and more notorious, was the Secret Additional Protocol that was attached to it, in which the signatories established their respective spheres of influence in Eastern Europe. It was agreed that "in the event of a territorial and political rearrangement" in the Baltic states, Finland, Estonia, and Latvia were in the USSR's sphere of influence and Lithuania in Germany's. Poland was divided along the rivers Narew, Vistula, and San, placing Ukrainian and Belorussian territories in the Soviet sphere of influence, together with a part of ethnic Poland in Warsaw and Lublin provinces. The question of the maintenance of an independent Poland and its frontiers was left open. In addition, Germany declared itself "disinterested" in Bessarabia.

The treaty denoted the USSR's retreat into neutrality when Hitler invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, and Great Britain and France declared war. Poland collapsed rapidly, but the USSR delayed until September 17 before invading eastern Poland, although victory was achieved within a week. From November 1939, the territory was incorporated in the USSR. Estonia and Latvia were forced to sign mutual assistance treaties with the USSR and to accept the establishment of Soviet military bases in September and October of 1939. Finnish resistance to Soviet proposals to improve the security of Leningrad through a mutual assistance treaty led to the Soviet – Finnish War (1939 – 1940). Lithuania was assigned to the Soviet sphere of influence in a supplementary agreement signed on September 28, 1939, and signed a treaty of mutual assistance with the USSR in October. Romania ceded Bessarabia following a Soviet ultimatum in June 1940.

It is often argued that, in signing the treaty, Stalin, who always believed that Hitler would attack the USSR for lebensraum, was seeking time to prepare the Soviet Union for war, and hoped for a considerably longer period than he received, for Germany invaded during June of 1941. Considerable efforts were made to maintain friendly relations with Germany between 1939 and 1941, including a November 1940 visit by Molotov to Berlin for talks with Hitler and Ribbentrop.

The Secret Protocol undermined the socialist foundations of Soviet foreign policy. It called for the USSR to embark upon territorial expansion, even if this was to meet the threat to its security presented by Germany's conquest of Poland. This may explain why, for a long period, the Secret Protocol was known only from the German copy of the document: The Soviet Union denied its existence, a position that Molotov maintained until his death in 1986. The Soviet originals were published for the first time in 1993.

In all Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, during August 1987, during the glastnost era, demonstrations on the anniversary of the pact were evidence of resurgent nationalism. In early 1990 the states declared their independence, the first real challenge to the continued existence of the USSR.

See also: germany, relations with molotov, vyacheslav mikhailovich world war ii


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