Warsaw Uprising (Sep 1944) (00:02:28m)
After the capitulation of Mokotow, German forces have launched a ferocious general attack on the district of Zoliborz. Since the early morning hours there has been very strong artillery fire from the direction of the Warsaw-Gdansk station. Especially hard hit was the area of Krasinski Street and Wilsona Square. Within a couple of hours the German had seized Prince Poniatowski school. German troops have been methodically destroying each building in the district. In addition to tanks they have dispatched the notorious Goliaths, remote controlled demolition vehicles. Each miniature "tank", what the Allies would call beetle tanks, can carry from 75 to 100 kilograms (170-220 lbs) of high explosives - detonating enough power to demolish entire buildings, bridges, and even other tanks.
Goliath tracked mine, German anti-tank weapon (1944) (00:01:19m)
Huge craters mark the places where streets and buildings used to be. Vast areas have been reduced to rubble. It is a horrifying scene - corpses scattered amid the craters, hanging from balconies, many of them women and children. Meanwhile German troops are conducting pacification on numerous villages in the forest. They have burned down and virtually eradicated the villages of Pociecha, Wiersze, Janowek, Brzozowka, Krogulec, among others. The situation is desperate. Insurgents in City Centre Sector are completely isolated, and the remaining pockets of resistance have been surrendering one after the other.
For the past two weeks Soviet have been flying supply missions over Warsaw though they refused to allow British or American to do likewise. The Soviets have made many drops from very low altitudes. They are flying biplanes, which are slow but have enabled pilots to pinpoint target zones with greater accuracy and they managed to hit their targets exactly. Reports indicate that the Soviets dropped canisters containing these among other items:
One artillery piece (45mm)
1,378 machine pistols
159 mortars (50mm)
505 anti-armour rifles
522 short carbines
350 German carbines
300 of 45mm shells
37,260 mortar shells (50mm)
57,640 rounds of ammunition for anti-armour rifles,
1,312,600 piece of ammunition for carbines,
1,360,984 rounds of ammunition (type not given)
75,000 rounds of ammunition (7.5 and 7.7 mm)
260,600 rounds of ammunition for Mausers
312,760 piece of parabellum ammunition
18,270 German hand-grenades
515 kilograms of medical equipment
10 field telephones
9,600 metres of telephone cables
One field telephone station
10 batteries for field telephone
22 batteries (BAS-AT)
126,681 kil. Of foodstuffs (278,696 lbs)
Sources indicate that many of the supplies were dropped without benefit of parachutes. The weapons that are so desperately needed, have been smashed to pieces upon hitting the ground. All the supplies have been rendered useless by the time they were picked up by the insurgents. To avoid damage, some supplies were packed with bags made of sailcloth, as well as packed with straw, sawdust or wood chips. Some insurgents claim that it is a two-faced plan of the Soviets: to demonstrate that they are helping the insurgents, all the while sabotaging the mission.
|German Anti-Aircraft Artillery - Warsaw Uprising 1944|
Some argue that to have dropped supplies by parachute would have been just as unsuccessful. Wind conditions have caused most containers to drift right into German-held territories. Furthermore, most of the ammunition dropped is Soviet-made and incompatible with the Germans weapons used by the insurgents. Frustration is running very high among the Polish fighters and they are desperate for any help, however slight. To date a total of 55 tons have been dropped, though much of it has been damaged or lost to the Germans. Today was the last day of Soviet aid missions to Warsaw.
|Lt. John Ward|
Polish Staff reports growing activity of Ukrainian insurrectionary army in Lvov District against Soviet occupation authorities. Ukrainians there evade conscription to Red Army and join Ukrainian forces in ever greater numbers. They receive arms and ammunition from the Germans by air.