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France was allied with Poland in September 1939 and was obliged to attack Germany immediately after Hitler's invasion of Poland. Do you know about this Mr Chirac?
 

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amazing :eek:, this is the reazon way I think Warsow is a landamark of Europe, the eforts to reconstroct the city was almoust a miracle, do you have pics of some monuments before and after the conflict macie?
 

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s102 said:
France was allied with Poland in September 1939 and was obliged to attack Germany immediately after Hitler's invasion of Poland. Do you know about this Mr Chirac?
And it did just that. So what are you complaining about?
 

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well after this you can imagine how much effort was taken to rebuild this city, I guess you would agree that Poles are masters of reconstruction
 

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My God, the first picture is frightening. I wonder how many beautiful buildings were lost forever.

Imagine the pain of the inhabitants - not only physical pain, but also the pain of seeing a great city being destroyed.
 

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s102 said:
France was allied with Poland in September 1939 and was obliged to attack Germany immediately after Hitler's invasion of Poland. Do you know about this Mr Chirac?
What does Chirac has to do with this?
France at that time was not able to defend his selve against Germany. How could it defend Poland???? Germany was bigger than now, had twice the population of France at that time and had already anexated Austria+crazy dictator turned Gemany in war machine=no match for France.
 

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Kampflamm said:
And it did just that. So what are you complaining about?
Yeah, sure France's army did come to the rescue of its Polish ally in 1939.

It did so by dropping leaflets over Germany from planes, sitting on its backside in the Maginot Line bunkers, guzzling cheap wine, playing cards and entertaining itself with "frontline" performances by Maurice Chevalier, exactly at the same time when the Polish Army was desperately fighting against Nazi invaders. Even the French themselves called that ridiculous thing drole de guerre ("weird war").

As for Mr Chirac, he was indeed a very courageous, dedicated soldier of France. The problem is that he displayed his outstanding combat capabilities during the brutal dirty war in Algeria, waged against Algerian people to keep their country under French colonial yoke.

snot said:
France at that time was not able to defend his selve against Germany. How could it defend Poland???? Germany was bigger than now, had twice the population of France at that time and had already anexated Austria+crazy dictator turned Gemany in war machine=no match for France.
If so, then why did France sign an alliance treaty with Poland in the first place? Why did it promise to attack Germany if Poland was invaded (as Poland promised to do if France was invaded)?

It didn't make any sense if France was actually unable to confront Germany, am I right?

Or did it? Perhaps it did.

Because... it did make sense if France expected the Polish army to attack Germany from the east, if France was invaded by Hitler as first. However, as history made evident, France never really intended to do the same, i.e. to keep its own promise and attack German forces from the west, if Poland was invaded (as actually happened). France signed the alliance with Poland, because it wanted a unilateral guarantee of Polish help for itself only.

That's called deceit.
 

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HEY GUYS , DID YOU KNOW THAT PARIS FELL TO THE GERMANS WITHOUT A SHOT ? PERHAPS THE VICHY FRENCH LOVED THEIR CITY SO MUCH AND THEIR DOLCE VITA LIFESTYLE THAT THEY WERE WILLING TO LOSE THEIR SOVEREIGNTY OVER TO THE JERRIES .NOT SO WITH THE POLES . THEY FOUGHT A LONG , PROTRACTED URBAN WARFARE DESPITE THE FACT THAT THE JERRIES HAD TOTALLY OCCUPIED POLAND . SOME OF THE POLES WHO MANAGED TO ESCAPE THE GERMAN OCCUPATION WENT TO ENGLAND AND SERVED WITH THE RAF IN ORDER TO GET BACK AT ADOLF .
 

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Corbis.com has a lot of good pictures of 1939-45 Warsaw







This is where Warsaw Ghetto was located. The only building to survive was the Catholic Church which u can see in the picture. Today this area is full of commieblocks.






This is a picture of Warsaw Downtown in 1950s. Newly build Palace of Culture and Science dominates the horison. Scattered ruins and nothingness...
 

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Arpels said:
amazing :eek:, this is the reazon way I think Warsow is a landamark of Europe, the eforts to reconstroct the city was almoust a miracle, do you have pics of some monuments before and after the conflict macie?
I love Warsaw for the same reason. I think it is a fascinating city for it's history and for what it went through. The old town and many important buildings were reconstructed painstakingly but you also need to know that only a fraction of what was destroyed was actually reconstruced. Most of Old Warsaw was lost forever and actually Communists destroyed many buildings which did survive. Many buildings in Warsaw were reconstructed in a much simpler form and Communists made sure that they will look more socialist. In fact they went so far as to strip surviving buildings of of their decorations.

I can provide you with a few examples.

St. Alexander



And today









More drastic example


This one survived untoutched...but the communists thought it looks too fancy so they made it look more socialist in 1960s. This happened to lots of buildings.


How about this. Those two palaces survived the war in a fairly good shape and could have been saved but the communists didnt think so. None of them exist today :(

 

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Vars_ said:
If so, then why did France sign an alliance treaty with Poland in the first place? Why did it promise to attack Germany if Poland was invaded (as Poland promised to do if France was invaded)?

It didn't make any sense if France was actually unable to confront Germany, am I right?

Or did it? Perhaps it did.

Because... it did make sense if France expected the Polish army to attack Germany from the east, if France was invaded by Hitler as first. However, as history made evident, France never really intended to do the same, i.e. to keep its own promise and attack German forces from the west, if Poland was invaded (as actually happened). France signed the alliance with Poland, because it wanted a unilateral guarantee of Polish help for itself only.
I don't think that the French expected any meaningful Polish help in case they would have been attacked first. Vice versa they didn't really care for the fate of Poland in case it was attacked. What they rather really hoped for was that this piece of paper would deter Germany from enlarging its territory to pre WW1 levels again as the population difference between Germany and France had been analysed to be one of the major reasons why France militarily got into the defensive from 1870 on whereas it historically had been dominating continental Europe for centuries. A permanently enlarged Germany would have undermined the goal of Versailles to weaken the German population dynamics by removing alot of its agrarian hinterland.
 

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This kind of threads thou highly interesting are also highly upsetting. I feel sorry for Warsaw with all the damage and it only reminds me how much I hate wars and the crap they bring. Thanks for showing us the terrible damage.
 

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Mike said:
I don't think that the French expected any meaningful Polish help in case they would have been attacked first. Vice versa they didn't really care for the fate of Poland in case it was attacked. What they rather really hoped for was that this piece of paper would deter Germany from enlarging its territory to pre WW1 levels again (...).

A permanently enlarged Germany would have undermined the goal of Versailles to weaken the German population dynamics by removing alot of its agrarian hinterland.
Thus you have confirmed my point: the 1939 "alliance" between France and Poland, was intended by the French to be no more than a piece of paper. Now you have the answer why Poland today is unwilling to rely on Western Europe to ensure its national security, turning to the USA instead. Regardless of Mr Chirac's irritation on that. France just proved it wasn't trustworthy as an ally.

BTW, by suggesting that Hitler’s purpose was merely to enlarge German territory to pre-WW1 levels, you are distorting history. His ambitions were far greater. Specifically, what were his intentions e.g. towards Poland?

The following is what Adolf Hitler said during a meeting with his aides held on 23rd May, 1939. (I did my best to provide an accurate translation into English):

“(...) Danzig is not the target we pursue. We are aiming to expand our Lebensraum (living space) to the east and to secure food supplies, and to resolve the Baltic problem.”

Now here is what the Fuhrer declared on 22nd August 1939 at a briefing for military commanders, called shortly before Germany invaded Poland:

“The destruction of Poland is the primary objective. Our task consists in annihilating the enemy’s human force, not in reaching a specific line. Even if war breaks out in the West, the destruction of Poland must be the basic purpose. (…) Our strength relies on our speed and brutality (…) . I gave the orders and I will order to execute all those who would question the principle that war is aimed to destroy the enemy physically. That’s why I have dispatched to the East my Totenkopfstandarte units with the order to kill without mercy all men, women and children of Polish race and language. It’s the only way to conquer the lands we need so badly. (…) Poland will be depopulated and colonised by Germans. My pact with Poland was aimed only to gain time (…)”.

Hitler kept his words. Germany’s aggression against Poland in 1939 shocked the entire world with its hitherto unmatched brutality. It wasn’t a continuation of 19th century conflicts or WW1. It was a warfare of a new type – designed to annihilate other peoples considered “inferior” by the Nazis. Poles were included among those “subhumans”.

Just to give an example of the brutal measures Germany applied once war started, let me tell you something. In contemporary Germany, some people are increasingly condemning Allied air raids on Germany, as “cruel”, “indiscriminate”, etc. Well, those people fail to mention that Germany started it all in the first place. Warsaw suffered heavy, indiscriminate bombardments from the very first day of war, that is, the dawn of 1st September, 1939. From 8th September on, it was subjected to daily terrorist air attacks, of which the civilian population was the main target. The massive air raids culminated on 25th September, when a large section of the city was in flames. The Germans didn’t even spare hospitals with huge Red Cross signs on their roofs… No less than 10,000 Warsaw civilians were killed during the siege. Let’s compare that with the 50,000 or so Berliners, who lost their lives throughout the whole war (until May 1945) as a result of bombardments and street fighting… Warsaw experienced massive terrorist air attacks, long before a single bomb fell on German territory.

That’s how Warsaw’s over 5-year long WW2 tragedy began. It was ONLY the beginning. Even worse was to come.

Now read carefully what follows.

Warsaw will NEVER FORGET what the Germans did to it between 1939 and 1945. NEVER. Even if we – the Varsovians – tell you otherwise, with the intention of extending our friendly hands, that sad and painful memory will FOREVER remain a crucial, and regrettably so tragic feature of Warsaw’s identity, it will stay in our hearts and souls. We may FORGIVE – but we will NOT FORGET.

That’s what the late Pope John Paul II made reference to, when he declared during a pilgrimage to Warsaw that it is impossible to understand the city, if one isn’t aware of its terrible WW2 history.

And the lingering question is still there without answer: why did the Germans hate our city so much? Why did they dedicate so many persistent efforts to wipe it off the face of the earth, step by step, phase by phase, for more than 5 years of military aggression and shockingly brutal occupation?

Every time a meet contemporary Germans here, I have the recurrent thought that I should ask them that question, just to know their opinion and what they feel about it. I never did it so far though.

One must believe that the Germans themselves will give the answer to that question some day. One must be hopeful.
 

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On a more optimistic note, two palaces destroyed during WWII will be soon rebuild :). This is the most representative square in Warsaw and now it really doesnt look like much, but after this it shoud look awesome!

 

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And the lingering question is still there without answer: why did the Germans hate our city so much? Why did they dedicate so many persistent efforts to wipe it off the face of the earth, step by step, phase by phase, for more than 5 years of military aggression and shockingly brutal occupation?

Every time a meet contemporary Germans here, I have the recurrent thought that I should ask them that question, just to know their opinion and what they feel about it. I never did it so far though.

One must believe that the Germans themselves will give the answer to that question some day. One must be hopeful.
My answer to that is: I don't have a clue. And neither does anyone else in Germany probably. Warsaw has never played a significant role in German history, so Warsaw's destruction can be chalked up to Hitler's personal problems (whatever they were).

BTW, does "Saski" mean "Saxon"?
 
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