BLUFPrior to 1939 Hitler played brinksmanship with the Allies, adding adjacent areas with German-speaking populations to Germany—and in 1939, Germany and the Soviet Union (Russia) invaded and carved up Poland between them.
This article from the Holocaust Encyclopaedia makes the following points:
- Soon after coming to power, Hitler signed a non-aggression pact with Poland to buy time to rearm.
- This pact neutralized the possibility of a French-Polish military alliance.
- Britain and France were not prepared for war, so they pursued appeasement in return for peace.
- The Munich Agreement gave parts of Czechoslovakia to Hitler in return for his promise of peace.
- Hitler didn’t keep his promise and took Czechoslovakia in March 1939.
- As a result, Britain and France guaranteed Polish independence.
- Hitler withdrew from the Polish non-aggression pact and signed a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union.
- WW2 began in Europe on 01 September 1939, when Germany and Russia invaded Poland.
- Britain and France then declared war on Germany.
- Blitzkrieg (lightning war) tactics and a lack of modern arms contributed to Poland’s defeat.
- Poland was divided between Germany and the Soviet Union.
References from the Web:
- The causes of World War Two-BBC Bitesize
- AUG 2019 Poland still counts losses from WW2 invasion- BBC News
- AUG 2019 The Invasion of Poland Wasn't Hitler's First Aggression. Here's Why That Move Marked the Beginning of WWII-Time
- SEP 2021 The brutal blitzkrieg: the 1939 invasion of Poland- History Extra
Source Information: the United States Holocaust Museum
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