Friday, March 25, 2016

September 28, 1939: Warsaw Capitulates

Thursday 28 September 1939

September 28 1939 Warsaw
German troops goosestep through Warsaw after the capitulation.
Battle of Poland: On 28 September 1939, Warsaw capitulates following a cease-fire arranged the previous day. There are 140,000 Polish soldiers sent into captivity. Polish forces elsewhere continue to fight, but Warsaw was the anchor of the defense.

The Poles may have surrendered in Warsaw, but elsewhere large troop formations continued to operate. One of them is a motley group of Polish Border Defence Corps (KOP) forces in the East under the command of General Wilhelm Orlik-Rueckemann. They are headed through forests near Włodawa and Kamień Koszyrski, in between the encroaching German and Soviet forces. The Soviet forces are nearby and prepare to engage the Poles.

Forming a defensive line between the villages of Mielniki and Szack (Shatsk), the Poles wait for the Soviets to attack. At 8:00 a.m., a Soviet tank/infantry formation from the Soviet 52nd Rifle Division approaches head-on without adequate support; the Poles wait until the targets are almost upon their positions before opening fire. The Soviets, who have weak T-26 tanks, are overwhelmed and their staff headquarters captured. The Poles then withdraw toward the Bug River.

While a minor action, the Battle of Szack demonstrates the enduring weakness of Soviet tactics. Just as in the Winter War later, the local Soviet commands show tactical ineptitude and lose strong forces through elementary tactical blunders. Incidents such as this no doubt reinforce Hitler's already low opinion of the Soviet military.

Soviet War Crimes: Some of the KOP forces ("Polesie" Brigade) near Szack are captured. All officers and NCOs are shot immediately by the Soviet 4th Army under Vassili Chuikov (later hero of Stalingrad).

Soviet Diplomacy: The USSR and Estonia sign a pact that gives the Soviets bases in Estonia in exchange for Vilnius and other territories in defeated Poland.

British Homefront: Vera Lynn records "We'll Meet Again" with Arthur Young on the Novachord. Written by Hughie Charles and Ross Parker, the song becomes quite closely associated with World War II in Great Britain and leads to a film based on it, "We'll Meet Again," that is released on 18 January 1943. The first release did not do particularly well in terms of sales, but the song gained popularity as time went on, and Lynn recorded many subsequent versions of it, some of them quite different than the original.

Vera Lynn - "We'll Meet Again" (1939 Version)

United States Homefront: The Cincinnati Reds clinch the National League title, setting up a World Series against the New York Yankees.

September 28 1939
All is well in the Beaufort News for 28 September 1939, with nary a mention of far-off Poland. However, seafood prices are a major concern.

September 1939

September 1, 1939: Invasion of Poland
September 2, 1939: Danzig Annexed
September 3, 1939: France, Great Britain Declare War
September 4, 1939: First RAF Raid
September 5, 1939: The US Stays Out
September 6, 1939: Battle of Barking Creek
September 7, 1939: Polish HQ Bugs Out
September 8, 1939: War Crimes in Poland
September 9, 1939: The Empire Strikes Back
September 10, 1939: The Germans Break Out
September 11, 1939: Battle of Kałuszyn
September 12, 1939: The French Chicken Out
September 13, 1939: The Battle of Modlin
September 14, 1939: Germany Captures Gdynia
September 15, 1939: Warsaw Surrounded
September 16, 1939: Battle of Jaworów
September 17, 1939: Soviets Invade Poland
September 18, 1939: Lublin Falls
September 19, 1939: Germans, Soviets Hook Up
September 20, 1939: the Kraków Army Surrenders
September 21, 1939: Romania Convulses
September 22, 1939: Joint Soviet-German Military Parade
September 23, 1939: The Panama Conference
September 24, 1939: The Luftwaffe Bombs Warsaw
September 25, 1939: Black Monday for Warsaw
September 26, 1939: Warsaw on the Ropes
September 27, 1939: Hitler Decides to Invade France
September 28, 1939: Warsaw Capitulates
September 29, 1939: Modlin Fortress Falls
September 30, 1939: Graf Spee on the Loose


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