Soviet Invasion & Occupation

Eastern Poland

The following is a transcript of the booklet "Eastern Poland," first published in December 1941, by the Polish Research Centre in London, England.

 

The purpose of this relatively non-political summary was to provide English politicians, scholars and diplomats a quick background on Polish history and the situation in Poland up until the time of the Second World War.  Despite the large volume of dry statistics and scholarly language, one will find many fascinating insights into inter-war Poland.  

Polish Census of December 1931

The following provides information about the population, the various ethnic groups, the various religious groups, and the counties of Poland in 1931.

The Germans and Soviets Invade

In 1918, the Polish army had just been resurrected after 120 years of non-existence. Poland had been ruled by the Germans, Austrians and Russians since the late 1700s.

 

In the wake of the devastation caused by the First World War (1914-18) and the Polish-Soviet War (1918-20), Poland had only just begun to rebuild and re-equip its armed forces (and shattered economy). In September of 1939, Poland's young army of 1.25 million troops faced off against the well trained and well equipped German forces of 1.5 million troops on the western front, followed 2 weeks later by the Soviet Union's 1.9 million troops on the eastern front.

 

They did not stand a chance but nonetheless held out for 5 weeks (later France, with British help, gave up after only 6 weeks). Neither the Polish government, nor the Polish army, ever signed an act of surrender.

Soviet Invasion: Battles and War Crimes

This document includes the following information:

  • The Polish-Soviet War of 1918-20

  • The Soviet occupation and deportations

  • Stories from the front

  • Declarations and Exhortation to Polish Soldiers

  • Soviet War Crimes during and after the invasion

  • The Death Marches of the summer of 1941

  • Atrocities committed later during the war

  • Those left behind by General Anders' Army

Soviet Occupation 1939

This document includes:

  • The pamphlet "The Soviet Occupation of Poland"

  • Stories of the deportations to Siberia

  • The document "Annexation of Eastern Poland by the U.S.S.R."

Second Russian Invasion

This document includes:

  •       Destruction of the Home Army

                         i) Turza Wood

                        ii) Polish Communists Aid the Soviets

                       iii) Pomerania

                       iv) Bialystok Region

                        v) Bocko

                       vi) Giby

                      vii) Silesia

                     viii) The Case of the Sixteen

                       ix) Soviet Control 1945-56

  • Excerpt from: Surviving the Polish Underground

  • Soviet Tentacles

  • The Post War Stalinist Era in Poland

  • Suffering Hidden for 60 Years: Imprisoned Mothers

  • Excerpt from: Null and Void

Polish Army in the Soviet Union

This document includes:

  • The breakdown of the units of the Polish 1st Army

  • The battles fought by this army

  • The casualties suffered

Timeline

This document includes:

  • Key dates and events from the war

  • Key dates and events affecting Poland in the post-war years

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