Warsaw, 1943 and 1944

W. Kiernan WKiernan at concentric.net
Wed Apr 7 18:33:51 PDT 1999

Wojtek Sokolowski wrote:
> At 12:21 PM 4/7/99 -0400, Ken Lawrence wrote:
> >
> > W. Kiernan wrote,
> >
> > > just the same as Stalin used up the Jewish partisans in Warsaw;
> >
> > Say what? Is this reference confusing the Jewish ghetto uprising in
> > April and May of 1943, when Hitler's forces were still on the
> > offensive deep inside Russia, with the Polish Home Army uprising of
> > August 1944?
> >
> > It is true that the Red Army had reached the Vistula by the time the
> > anticommunist Home Army uprising occurred, but today, even some
> > Polish nationalist historians dispute the old saw that Stalin could
> > easily have liberated Warsaw.
> I guess nobody but Polish nationalist believe that old canard. If
> anything, the 1944 Warsaw uprising was used, and utlimately betrayed,
> by no one else but the Polish nationalist government in exile in
> London. As it became clear that Poland would be liberated by the Red
> Army rather than the Western allies, as the nationalists had hoped
> for, the London-based government intended to start an uprising to gain
> power and legitimacy vis a vis the Soviet backed Lublin government --
> even though they were specifically informed by the Americans and the
> British that there would be no Western aid for that venture.
> The nationalist London-based Polish government witheld that
> information from the resistance commanders in Poland who prepared for
> the uprising on the false assumption that Western aid was coming as
> soon as the fighting in warsaw starts. Morerover, the resistance
> commanders did not receive intelligence reports from London about the
> capacity (or rather lack of it) of the Red Army to continue its
> offensive across the Vistula river (necessary for the liberation of
> Warsaw). Consequently they relied on inacuare information provided
> by their own information networks that grossly exaggerated the Soviet
> capacity to continue the offensive.
> So at the end of the day the uprising was prepared with the assumption
> that the Allies would aid it, whereas no such promises were made by
> either side. On the contrary, the Polish government in-exile knew
> that no aid was coming, and deliberately witheld that information from
> the resistance forces.

Ken: Indeed it is. That's the story as I learnt it in school, at the same time I was being taught how Commies in general and Stalin in particular emitted sulphurous fumes. Maybe in the same class. When I was in High School we were required by Florida state law to take a class called, I kid you not, "Americanism vs. Communism". Just imagine the rubbish they vended out.

Wojtek: Now why in God's name would the Polish Govt.-in-exile have considered it to be in their self-interest to betray the Polish Home Army in Warsaw in 1944? On the other hand, it is not hard to imagine why the U.S. State Department would want to screw over the Kosovo Liberation Army or the Kurdish Workers Party.

Under normal circs I would take your word for it, but no offense, I've been lied to so hard these last couple weeks that I'm going to check what you said in the U.S.F. library this weekend. But at any rate, thanks for the clarification, stuff like this rewards wading through seventy-five eMails every day.

Yours WDK - WKiernan at concentric.net

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