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Warsaw after the war :(


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Warsaw. April 3, 1946. View of the ruins of the ghetto in Muranów. The author of the photograph is Reginald Kenny, an American photographer who accompanied Herbert Hoover, former US president, during a visit to Warsaw.
Edited by ed_
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Nazi Germany transforming a city to a pile of rubble, meanwhile Soviets looking over the Vistula after they said they would support the uprising. One of the worst war crimes of ww2 for sure.

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Marysia, Jadzia, Jolka.
Summer during the German occupation.

Unfortunately, they did not live to see the end of the war. They died under the rubble of a bombed building on September 28, 1944.
Their mother, a nurse, was murdered by the Germans at the beginning of the Warsaw Uprising in execution on Dworkowa street.
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I remember my grandfather telling stories where the Germans during their surrender blew Hungarian bridges up to slow down the Soviets. And what Germans didnt take out of Hungary, the Soviets did. For 3 years the Soviets brought everything out from Hungary as war reparations. Russian soldiers were at my grandfathers family, and they had chickens. The soldiers deminded the chickens. The family gave them all except one. They talked about the hidden chicken in Hungarian, and what they didnt know was that one of the Ukranian soldier understood Hungarian, and he said "you can give me that chicken are I will break your neck". They just wanted to spare a chicken so the children could eat something, but they had to hand it over

When my grandfather (who was 8 at that time) with his family tried to flee the country during the war, the Russians just caught up with them and they got into a crossfire. The father of my gradfather jumped onto his daughter to protect her with his own body from bullets. They survived that event


War is a nasty thing. Civilian casulties can be really sad

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The Soviets were often worse than the Nazis. Long before ww2 and long after they  murdered without scruples.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...

@Smileyyy @Nefarious Cheat @Vindstot 



303 Squadron Pilots from left: Ferić, Kent, Grzeszczak, Radomski, Zumbach, Łukuciewski, Henneberg, Rogowski, Szaposznikow (1940).




Stanisław Skalski, the hunting ace who shot down the most hostile planes among Polish pilots. His balance is 18 German planes shot down (including two in teams) and two more probably shot down.


The only Polish combat organization invited to participate in the parade were the pilots of Squadron 303 who were to march in the ranks of the RAF, but they refused after other Polish units were not invited to the parade. Opposition leader Winston Churchill, speaking in the House of Commons, said:

„I deeply regret that none of the Polish units that fought at our side in so many battles and that shed their blood for the common cause were allowed to participate in the Victory Parade. We will be thinking about this army on that day. We will never forget their bravery or their combat feats, which are related to our own fame at Tobruk, Cassino and Arnhem.”
One of the main reasons that led to the exclusion of Poles from the parade was that the British did not want to irritate relations with the Soviet Union, which considered Poland as its own sphere of influence.

More info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No._303_Squadron_RAF

More info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Britain

More info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Victory_Celebrations_of_1946




A Family At War (1970 to 1972, John Finch, David Giles), S02E03



Why did the Poles stay alone when the Germans attacked us? France and the English were passive until they were attacked themselves. After all, we were in an alliance...

Why was Poland after WWII a satellite state of the USSR? Because Roosevelt and Churchill didn't want further war with Stalin.
Again we were left alone....

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Thanks again for sharing mate. I think Poland had one of the worst history in WW2... There is a reason why I love the movie The Pianist so much. Really well portrayed the horrors of the Warsaw uprising. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm from Poland. I not born in time of war but my family was. It's been terrible time. No food, always shoots, a lot of nazi on streets. But Poland don't give up and won a war. Look at movie "Miasto 44". 

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A brave man who will be the subject of films one day.



Rotmistrz (like captain) Witold Pilecki.


In 1940, Pilecki presented a plan to his superiors to enter Germany's Auschwitz concentration camp at Oświęcim to gather intelligence on the camp from the inside and organize inmate resistance... Yes, this Auschwitz, where the Germans murdered over 1.1 million people (Poles, Jews and Gypsies and Russians).


Pilecki organized the underground Union of Military Organizations (ZOW) at Auschwitz while working in various kommandos and surviving pneumonia.

ZOW provided the Polish underground with invaluable information about the camp; they sent reports to Warsaw from October 1940, and the reports were forwarded via the Polish resistance to the British government in London beginning in March 1941. In 1942, Pilecki's resistance movement was also broadcasting details on the number of arrivals and deaths in the camp and the inmates' conditions using a radio transmitter that was built by camp inmates. The secret radio station was built over seven months using smuggled parts; it was broadcasting from the camp until the autumn of 1942, when it was dismantled by Pilecki's men after concerns that the Germans might discover its location because of "one of our fellows' big mouth".


These reports were a principal source of intelligence on Auschwitz for the Western Allies. Pilecki hoped that either the Allies would drop arms or troops into the camp, or that the Home Army would organize an assault on it from outside.
Meanwhile, the Camp Gestapo under SS-Untersturmfuhrer Maximilian Grabner redoubled its efforts to ferret out ZOW members, killing many of them.

Pilecki decided to break out of the camp with the hope of convincing Home Army leaders personally that a rescue attempt was a valid option. He was assigned to a night shift at a camp bakery outside the fence, and he and two comrades overpowered a guard, cut the phone line, and escaped on the night of 26/27 April 1943, taking with them documents stolen from the Germans.


When the Warsaw Uprising broke out on 1 August 1944, Pilecki volunteered for service with Kedyw's Chrobry II Battalion. At first, Pilecki served as a common soldier in the northern city center, without revealing his actual rank to his superiors.

Later, after many officers were killed in the fierce fighting that occurred during the early days of the uprising, Pilecki disclosed his true identity to his superiors and accepted command of the 1st "Warszawianka" Company located in Śródmieście in downtown Warsaw. Pilecki fought under the nom de guerre "Captain Roman".


After the capitulation of the uprising, Pilecki hid a cache of weapons in a private apartment and surrendered to the Wehrmacht on 5 October 1944. He was sent to Germany and imprisoned at Stalag VIII-B, a prisoner-of-war camp near Lamsdorf, Silesia. He was later transferred to Oflag VII-A in Murnau, Bavaria where he was eventually liberated by troops of the US 12th Armored Division on 28 April 1945.


Pilecki arrived in Warsaw in December 1945 and proceeded to begin organizing an intelligence gathering network, which included several wartime associates from Auschwitz and the Secret Polish Army (TAP).

To maintain his cover identity, Pilecki lived under various assumed names and changed jobs frequently. He would work as a jewelry salesman, a bottle label painter and as night manager of a construction warehouse. Nevertheless, Pilecki was informed in July 1946 that his actual identity had been uncovered by the MBP. He was ordered to leave the country, but he refused to do so.


In April 1947, he began independently collecting evidence of Soviet atrocities committed in Poland during the 1939–1941 occupation (like Katyń) as well as evidence of the unlawful arrest and prosecution of Home Army veterans and ex-members of the Polish Armed Forces in the West, which often resulted in execution or imprisonment.




Pilecki was arrested by agents of the Ministry of Public Security on 8 May 1947, and he was repeatedly tortured before going to trial.  But Pilecki sought to protect other prisoners and revealed no sensitive information.

A show trial took place on 3 March 1948. Pilecki was charged with illegal border crossing, use of forged documents, not enlisting with the military, carrying illegal arms, espionage for General Władysław Anders, espionage for "foreign imperialism" (British intelligence), and planning to assassinate several officials of the Ministry of Public Security of Poland. Pilecki denied the assassination charges, as well as espionage, although he admitted to passing information to the 2nd Polish Corps, of which he considered himself an officer and thus claimed that he was not breaking any laws. He pleaded guilty to the other charges. 


He was sentenced to death on 15 May with three of his comrades, and he was executed with a shot to the back of the head at the Mokotów Prison in Warsaw on 25 May 1948 by Staff Sergeant Piotr Śmietański (who was nicknamed "The Butcher of Mokotow Prison" by the inmates).


"I've been trying to live my life so that in the hour of my death I would rather feel joy, than fear." — Pilecki after the announcement of the death sentence

Pilecki's place of burial has never been found but is thought to be somewhere within Warsaw's Powązki Cemetery. After the fall of Communism in Poland, a cenotaph was erected in his memory at Ostrowa Mazowiecka Cemetery. In 2012, Powązki Cemetery was partially excavated in an effort to find his remains.



More info: https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2018705699/the-man-who-volunteered-to-go-to-auschwitz

More info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witold_Pilecki

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I will upload some of my photographs from the Auschwitz camp from 2009.
I will leave no comment...





More info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maximilian_Kolbe




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  • 4 months later...

The periphery of Warsaw, 13 September 1939. Young girls pick up the last potatoes from the field. German planes are coming.

They shoot once, twice. Andzia falls down. 12-year-old Kazia Kostewicz leans over the corpse of her sister.

The scene is seen by an American photographer Julien Bryan.





12-year-old Kazimiera Mika (Kostewicz) at the body of her 14-year-old sister. 13.09.1939






The photographer hugs the girl whose sister just died



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Wehrmacht soldiers during the assault on the Polish capital.





German artillery during the shelling of Warsaw





German trenches in one of the suburbs of Warsaw.





German tanks and riflemen motorized on Grójecka Street 





Soldiers are smoking cigarettes while waiting for the signal for the next attack. Behind the belts with the inscription "Gott mit uns" on the buckles you can see clogged Stielhandgranate 24 handle grenades.





German light machine gun MG 08/15 in the Grochowo district





German infantry trying to find cover behind tanks.



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  • 2 weeks later...

Warsaw is a lovely City. 

One of the most amazing things to me is how the Poles rebuilt. Often buildings would be leveled to the basement, or even below.   They didn't just build new buildings, they recreated the buildings that used to be in  that spot. Often gluing pieces together like a puzzle, rather then carving/casting replacement architectural elements. They also deliberately left bullet impacts in concrete/stone, rather then patching them.

And they are exactly zero percent politically correct. When you take tours they are very clear the Russians / soviets were communist Aholes who left the Poles out to dry and then raped their country. They make it clear that the Germans were murderous Nazis. Unlike the rest of europe that wants to sweep the whole thing under the rug, (like how enthusiastically the French and Norwegians were to help round up the Jews), the Polish are very frank and uncensored. It is easy to find English speaking tour guides, and even in the poorest parts of Poland (the far east) where most adults do not yet understand English, you can get by just fine with hand gestures and cash.  In any urban area English speaking is Common. It is a very easy country for Americans to get around in, and feel comfortable in (very patriotic, & proud of who they are and what they've done,  very pro-American). If you want to learn more about WWII, sleep in or tour Teutonic Castles (including the largest in the world),  it is worth vacationing here. 

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