SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Maria C. Horton, Andy Thurai

Blog Feed Post

The Massacre at Katyn

Mass murder in the forests of Katyn

 

In April 1943, in the Katyn Forest near Smolensk in the Soviet Union, occupying German troops discovered eight large graves containing the remains of thousands of the Polish Army officers and intellectual leaders who had been interned at the prisoner-of-war camp at Kozielsk. Bodies of the prisoners who had been housed at Ostashkov and Starobielsk were discovered near Piatykhatky and Mednoye, respectively. Collectively, these murders are known as the Katyn Forest Massacre.

An internationally-staffed medical commission organized by the Germans excavated the area in early spring 1943. As the excavation progressed, the Germans brought in several groups of observers, including some American prisoners-of-war. This commission determined that the massacre occurred in 1940, when the area was under Soviet control -- a determination which was then used as a propaganda tool intended to disrupt the alliance between the US, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union. This effort was successful in part, as Polish intelligence sources immediately blamed the Soviets for the atrocities, leading to a break in diplomatic relations between Poland and the USSR.

After their recapture of Smolensk in the autumn of 1943, the Soviet government organized its own excavation. This second enquiry concluded that the Polish prisoners of war had been captured and executed by invading German units in August 1941.

 

Later investigations concluded the Soviet version of the Katyn massacre was a complete fabrication.

 

The first news of strange and terrible happenings at Katyn was broadcast by Radio Berlin on 13 April 1943.


The following are extracts from the original broadcast:

 


German officers at the Hill of Goats (Katyn)

A report has reached us from Smolensk to the effect that the local inhabitants have mentioned to the German authorities the existence of a place where mass executions have been carried out by the Bolsheviks and where 10,000 Polish officers have been murdered by the Soviet Secret State Police.

 

The German authorities accordingly went to a place called the Hill of Goats (Kozogory), a Russian health resort situated 12 kilometres west of Smolensk, where a gruesome discovery was made.

 

A ditch was found, 28 metres long and 16 metres wide, in which the bodies of 3,000 Polish officers were piled up in twelve layers. They were fully dressed in military uniforms, some were bound, and all had pistol shot wounds in the back of their heads. There will be no difficulty in identifying the bodies as, owing to the nature of the ground, they are in a state of mummification and the Russians had left on the bodies their personal documents.

 

It has been stated today that General Smorawinsky from Lublin has been found among other murdered officers. Previously these officers were in a camp at Kozelsk near Orel and in February and March 1940 were brought in “cattle” freight cars to Smolensk. Thence they were taken in lorries to the Hill of Goats and murdered there by the Bolsheviks. The search for further pits is in progress. New layers may be found under those already discovered.

 

It is estimated that the total number of officers killed amounts to 10,000, which would correspond to the entire cadre of Polish officers taken prisoner by the Russians.

 

As it came from Dr Goebbels’ Propaganda Ministry, this communiqué was automatically suspect. On the other hand, the history of Soviet- Polish relationship since 1939 had been such that the story could not be lightly dismissed.

 

On 1 September 1939, when the German armies invaded Poland, she and the Soviet Union were bound by a number of seemingly unbreakable treaties and agreements. But in the dawn of 17 September 1939, at a time when Poland was most hard pressed by her German aggressors, the Red Army crossed the Polish frontier in considerable force – ostensibly, ‘to take all measures to extricate the Polish people from the unfortunate war into which they were dragged by their unwise leaders and to enable them to lead a peaceful life.’

 

German authorities examine bodies at the site of the Katyn massacre.

During the next days the closeness of the collaboration between Germany and Russia became apparent. Poland was formally partitioned on 28 September and, in the hope of ending the bitter fighting, a manifesto was issued by the Russian General Timoschenko exhorting the soldiers of the Polish army to turn upon their officers and surrender.

 

In return for laying down their arms, all Polish prisoners of war were guaranteed complete freedom of movement and it was promised they would be permitted to make their way to Rumania and Hungary en route for France, where they could continue to fight the Germans.

 

This promise was not kept. Polish NCO’s with technical qualifications and all officers were deported from Poland to Russia and accommodated in three main camps: Kozelsk, Starobelsk and Ostashkov. In the late autumn of 1939, letters from them began to reach their families left behind in Poland.

 

Read the full article here: http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/nazioccupation/Katyn.html

 

 

The Holocaust Education & Archive Research Team

www.HolocaustResearchProject.org

 

Copyright Carmelo Lisciotto H.E.A.R.T 2013



Copyright Carmelo Lisciotto H.E.A.R.T 2010

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Holocaust Research Project

The aim of H.E.A.R.T is to inform and educate people about the Holocaust and the extermination programs conducted by the Nazi regime throughout Europe during the Second World War.

H.E.A.R.T research and material is contributed from a group of independent Holocaust researchers who devote their spare time to research for the production of this website and other forms of related publications, such as leaflets and books.

H.E.A.R.T is run by its trustees and directors, who manage the daily administration of the website, review all research materials, fact checking, and addressing any required corrections.

Most materials presented on the H.E.A.R.T website originate in Poland, Germany, the former Soviet Union, and the United Kingdom as well as from private sources in the USA and other countries.

H.E.A.R.T currently accepts no new membership however we do maintain affiliations with educational institutions and private associations that contribute articles, photos, rare documents, etc.

Contributed text and pages will appear on the website as a "Guest Publication" with the author maintaining full copyright to the submitted text however page design and layout is owned by © H.E.A.R.T. All other material presented on this website is subject to H.E.A.R.T copyright however all pages may be used “Freely” providing the source is credited as the following:

"Courtesy of the Holocaust Education & Archive Research Team www.HolocaustResearchProject.org " © H.E.A.R.T www.HolocaustResearchProject.org

Latest Stories
CloudEXPO has been the M&A capital for Cloud companies for more than a decade with memorable acquisition news stories which came out of CloudEXPO expo floor. DevOpsSUMMIT New York faculty member Greg Bledsoe shared his views on IBM's Red Hat acquisition live from NASDAQ floor. Acquisition news was announced during CloudEXPO New York which took place November 12-13, 2019 in New York City.
Blockchain has shifted from hype to reality across many industries including Financial Services, Supply Chain, Retail, Healthcare and Government. While traditional tech and crypto organizations are generally male dominated, women have embraced blockchain technology from its inception. This is no more evident than at companies where women occupy many of the blockchain roles and leadership positions. Join this panel to hear three women in blockchain share their experience and their POV on the futu...
"At the keynote this morning we spoke about the value proposition of Nutanix, of having a DevOps culture and a mindset, and the business outcomes of achieving agility and scale, which everybody here is trying to accomplish," noted Mark Lavi, DevOps Solution Architect at Nutanix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
BMC has unmatched experience in IT management, supporting 92 of the Forbes Global 100, and earning recognition as an ITSM Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader for five years running. Our solutions offer speed, agility, and efficiency to tackle business challenges in the areas of service management, automation, operations, and the mainframe.
As you know, enterprise IT conversation over the past year have often centered upon the open-source Kubernetes container orchestration system. In fact, Kubernetes has emerged as the key technology -- and even primary platform -- of cloud migrations for a wide variety of organizations. Kubernetes is critical to forward-looking enterprises that continue to push their IT infrastructures toward maximum functionality, scalability, and flexibility. As they do so, IT professionals are also embr...
Docker and Kubernetes are key elements of modern cloud native deployment automations. After building your microservices, common practice is to create docker images and create YAML files to automate the deployment with Docker and Kubernetes. Writing these YAMLs, Dockerfile descriptors are really painful and error prone.Ballerina is a new cloud-native programing language which understands the architecture around it - the compiler is environment aware of microservices directly deployable into infra...
Apptio fuels digital business transformation. Technology leaders use Apptio's machine learning to analyze and plan their technology spend so they can invest in products that increase the speed of business and deliver innovation. With Apptio, they translate raw costs, utilization, and billing data into business-centric views that help their organization optimize spending, plan strategically, and drive digital strategy that funds growth of the business. Technology leaders can gather instant recomm...
In an age of borderless networks, security for the cloud and security for the corporate network can no longer be separated. Security teams are now presented with the challenge of monitoring and controlling access to these cloud environments, at the same time that developers quickly spin up new cloud instances and executives push forwards new initiatives. The vulnerabilities created by migration to the cloud, such as misconfigurations and compromised credentials, require that security teams t...
Serverless Architecture is the new paradigm shift in cloud application development. It has potential to take the fundamental benefit of cloud platform leverage to another level. "Focus on your application code, not the infrastructure" All the leading cloud platform provide services to implement Serverless architecture : AWS Lambda, Azure Functions, Google Cloud Functions, IBM Openwhisk, Oracle Fn Project.
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm. In their Day 3 Keynote at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Brown, a Solutions Marketing Manager at Nutanix, and Mark Lav...
AI and machine learning disruption for Enterprises started happening in the areas such as IT operations management (ITOPs) and Cloud management and SaaS apps. In 2019 CIOs will see disruptive solutions for Cloud & Devops, AI/ML driven IT Ops and Cloud Ops. Customers want AI-driven multi-cloud operations for monitoring, detection, prevention of disruptions. Disruptions cause revenue loss, unhappy users, impacts brand reputation etc.
The platform combines the strengths of Singtel's extensive, intelligent network capabilities with Microsoft's cloud expertise to create a unique solution that sets new standards for IoT applications," said Mr Diomedes Kastanis, Head of IoT at Singtel. "Our solution provides speed, transparency and flexibility, paving the way for a more pervasive use of IoT to accelerate enterprises' digitalisation efforts. AI-powered intelligent connectivity over Microsoft Azure will be the fastest connected pat...
Serverless Computing or Functions as a Service (FaaS) is gaining momentum. Amazon is fueling the innovation by expanding Lambda to edge devices and content distribution network. IBM, Microsoft, and Google have their own FaaS offerings in the public cloud. There are over half-a-dozen open source serverless projects that are getting the attention of developers.
As you know, enterprise IT conversation over the past year have often centered upon the open-source Kubernetes container orchestration system. In fact, Kubernetes has emerged as the key technology -- and even primary platform -- of cloud migrations for a wide variety of organizations. Kubernetes is critical to forward-looking enterprises that continue to push their IT infrastructures toward maximum functionality, scalability, and flexibility. As they do so, IT professionals are also embr...
The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential. DevOpsSUMMIT at CloudEXPO expands the DevOps community, enable a wide sharing of knowledge, and educate delegates and technology providers alike.