After the end of World War I, the German fleet was scuttled at Scapa Flow, in Scotland. The High Seas Fleet was interned there under the terms of the Armistice during negotiations took place over the fate of the ships. Ludwig won Reuter, the German commander, fearing that all the ships would be seized and divided among the Allied powers, decided to scuttle the fleet, which he carried out on June 21, 1919. Intervening British guard ships were able to beach a number of the ships, but 52 of the 74 interned vessels sank. Many of the wrecks were salvaged over the next two decades and were towed away for scrapping.
Polish Government in Exile moved to London: After the invasion of Poland by Germany on September 1, 1939, the leaders of the Polish government evacuated Poland and made their way to France. The Polish Government in Exile wielded considerable influence in Poland during World War Two, through the establishment of the Polish Underground State (Secret State) and an enormous network of the Home Army (Armia Krajowa). Polish army units took part in virtually every Allied military operation during the War, in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. The Polish government-in-Exile was based in France during 1939 and 1940, first in Paris and then in Angers. From 1940, following the Fall of France, the Polish Government-in-Exile moved to London, and remained in the United Kingdom until its dissolution in 1990. (see January 1, 1945 and July 6 1945)
Palmiry Massacre of Poles: For two days, the German SS conducted mass executions of Polish citizens near the village of Palmiry in the Kampinos Forest, located northwest of Warsaw. In a single operation, the Nazis executed 358 members of the Polish political, cultural and social elite. Among them were Janusz Kusociński, 33, Polish athlete, Mieczysław Niedziałkowski, Polish politician and writer, Maciej Rataj, 56, Polish politician and writer, Tomasz Stankiewicz, 37, Polish track cyclist. Between December 1939 and July 1941 more than 1,700 Poles and Jews – mostly the inmates of Pawiak prison – were executed by the SS.
Himmler ordered the liquidation of remaining ghettos in the General Government, and removal of Jews capable of working to forced labor camps and those incapable of work to Nazi German death camps in Poland. After the joint invasion of Poland by Germany and the Soviet Union in September 1939, Poland was divided into three sectors - the center was called General Government, the west was annexed to Germany, and the east was occupied by the Soviet Union. The General government was a Nazi administrative and logistical center. Their ultimate objective was to eliminate the intelligentsia (Jews and Poles), reduce the Polish population to subservient slaves, and repopulate the area with Germans. Here is the order in a memo from Himmler, dated June 21, 1943, " To: The Higher SS and Police Leader (Hoherer SS- und Polizeifuehrer) Ostland; Chief of the SS Economic and Administrative Main Office (Chef des SS-Wirtschafts-Verwaltungshauptamtes) 1) I order that all Jews still remaining in ghettos in the Ostland area be collected in concentration camps. 2) I prohibit the withdrawal of Jews from concentration camps for [outside] work from August 1, 1943. 3) A concentration camp is to be built near Riga to which will be transferred the entire manufacture of clothing and equipment now operated by the Wehrmacht outside. All private firms will be eliminated. The workshops are to be solely concentration camp workshops. The Chief of the SS Economic and Administrative Main Office is requested to see to it that there will be no shortfall in the production required by the Wehrmacht as the result of this reorganization. 4) Inmates of the Jewish ghettos who are not required are to be evacuated to the East. 5) As many male Jews as possible are to be taken to the concentration camp in the oil-shale area for the mining of oil-shale. 6) The date set for the reorganization of the concentration camps is August 1, 1943. signed H. Himmler"