July 31, 2018




Under the instructions from Hitler,  Hermann Göring, issued a written directive to Reinhard Heydrich, which read partly as follows:   “.....I herewith commission you to carry out all preparations with regard to . . .... a total solution of the Jewish question in those territories of Europe which are under German influence. . .  I furthermore charge you to submit to me as soon as possible a draft showing  the . .  .... measures already taken for the execution of the intended final solution [Endloesung] of the Jewish question...."  After the end of World War Two, with  Germany's unconditional surrender, the Allies convened the International Military Tribunal, that is the Nuremberg Trials.  The most important surviving Nazi on trial for war crimes was Göring.  Heydrich  had been assassinated by the Czech Underground in June 1942)  During the investigation, the prosecutors discovered that there was written evidence of what was called the "Fuhrer Order on the Final Solution" but could not find a document with Hitler's signature on it. They did however, find Göring's directive and used it in the tribunal to indict Göring.  When the evidence was brought forward, Göring protested claiming that the word "Endloesung" did not mean "final solution" but rather "desired" solution. Göring's attempt to deny culpability based on a feeble play on semantics did not work. He was sentenced to death, but committed suicide before the day of his execution.


As the Soviet forces were approaching central Poland in mid 1944, the Polish Government in Exile in London instructed General Bor-Komorowski to commence  preparations for an armed uprising in Warsaw. The Government-in-exile wished to return to a capital city liberated by Poles, to prevent a Communist take-over of Poland which Stalin had planned.  The Warsaw Uprising began on August 1, 1944.


Trial of the Generals:  Communist authorities in Poland held a show trial from July 31 to August 31, 1951. The objective was to "cleanse" the Soviet army of Polish officers who had served in the Polish Armed Forces during the interwar Poland or in the anti-Nazi resistance during World War II. All of the arrested officers were falsely accused of conspiracy against the Polish United Workers' Party and for having collaborated with British and American intelligence services.  All of the accused generals were sentenced to life imprisonment, including Franciszek Herman, Jerzy Kirchmayer, Stefan Mossor and Stanisław Tatar. The colonels Marian Jurecki, Marian Utnik and Stanisław Nowicki were sentenced to 15 years in prison, while Major Roman and Commander Wacek were sentenced to 12 years. In the so-called "splinter trials", an additional 86 officers of the Polish Army, Navy and Air Forces were arrested and tried. Most of them were tortured by the secret police (Urząd Bezpieczeństwa) under the command of Roman Romkowski.  Approximately 40 Polish officers were sentenced to death, but only the first 20 executions were carried out.

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