Gleiwitz incident

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The Gleiwitz incident. At 8 p.m. on 31 August 1939 uniformed Polish soldiers, speaking Polish, attacked the Gleiwitz broadcasting station in German Upper Silesia, a province notorious for Polish terrorism. The staff were ordered into the cellar and locked in it. A soldier then broadcast: "This is Gleiwitz. The [radio] station is in Polish hands." By the time the first police arrived from their station 1 km away the intruders had left. This was said by the post WWII Allies to be a false flag operation by National Socialist Germany, which was then used as a major justification for invading Poland. This assertion has continued with embellishment since 1945 to try and make the lie truth.

Revisionists have disputed many aspects of these claims. One is that the alleged attack was not an important part of the German justification for war which already included large scale and increasing persecutions of Germans in Poland, Polish acts of aggression in Danzig, intolerable interference with transit across the Polish Corridor, and the Polish general mobilization which commenced piece-meal from April 1939. Neither Hitler, nor Goebbels, nor any other official have emphasized the Gleiwitz incident to justify the attack on Poland.[1] Furthermore, the only "evidence" for the Gleiwitz radio station attack as a National Socialist operation consists of an uncorroborated unsigned "confession" by a German officer to the Allies. The evidence of the radio station staff was ignored. The Gleiwitz False Flag Incident is Pure Fiction.[2]


Poland had been given an unconditional guarantee of military assistance by Britain in case of war in March 1939. Revisionists argue that nationalist elements in Poland sought to exploit this by provoking a war with Germany with the anticipation being that Germany would be defeated and Poland would gain more German territory. Far from this being a theory, these objectives were published in Polish newspapers of the day.

This would make the start of the Second World War somewhat similar to the start of the First World War in which a Serbian terrorist group (the Black Hand) murdered Archduke Franz Ferdinand in order to provoke a war in which Serbia's ally and 'protector', Russia, would come to the rescue with the ultimate goal of Serbia gaining territory after victory.

Another aspect is that Poland, which was a new resurrected independent state after the First World War, had been during the interwar period intensely discriminating and persecuting non-Polish groups such as Germans, Jews, Russians, and Ukrainians with argued motivations such as past (ancient) discrimination and persecution of Poles, expropriating property and other resources, and ethnic cleansing through forced emigration in order to create a more homogenous Polish state.[3]

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  1. There is not mention of this incident whatsoever in the diplomatic papers in Documents on British Foreign Policy 1919-1939 Third Series, vol.vii 1939, HMSO, London, 1954.
  3. Richard Blanke (1993). Orphans Of Versailles: The Germans in Western Poland, 1918-1939, University of Kentucky Press.