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Poland WW2 Timeline

Authored By Dan Alex | Last Updated: 10/25/2014

With international help not coming, Poland was the first to fall to the Axis scourge from the West - aided by the Soviet invasion from the East.

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There are a total of 67 WW2 Polish Timeline Events. Entries are listed below by date of occurrence ascending and are gathered from the overall SwwH site database as they relate to their particular series events.


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1939
Thursday
August 31st

Adolph Hitler provides the final orders for the invasion of Poland.

1939
Friday
September 1st

German airborne elements begin bombardment of Polish defensive targets. At 6:00 AM, 50 German divisions making up Army Group North and Army Group South flood into Poland. Army Group South's mission is the capture of the Polish capital of Warsaw.

1939
Friday
September 8th

German ground forces arrive at the outskirts of the Polish capital of Warsaw, covering an astounding 200 miles in a single week.

1939
Saturday
September 9th

Polish Poznan army units launch a counter-offensive against the German army at Kutno on the Bzura.

1939
Sunday
September 10th

Polish forces at the Modline fortress some 20 miles north of Warsaw fall under siege to the German Army.

1939
Sunday
September 17th

Soviet army elements begin their invasion of Poland from the east. Attacks occur near Vilnius and Bialystok.

1939
Sunday
September 17th

Polish resistance at the Bzura River north of Lodz finally surrender to the Germans. Some 170,000 Polish prisoners are taken captive.

1939
Monday
September 18th

The Polish city of Vilnius falls to the Soviet army.

1939
Monday
September 18th

The Polish government flees into Romania.

1939
Tuesday
September 19th

German and Soviet army elements finally meet one another in Poland at Brest-Litovsk.

1939
Friday
September 22nd

The Polish city of Bialystok falls to the Soviet Army.

1939
Friday
September 22nd

The Polish City of Lwow falls to the Soviet Army.

1939
Wednesday
September 27th

The Polish capital of Warsaw officially falls.

1939
Thursday
September 28th

Polish forces fighting it out at the Modline fortress officially surrender.

1939
Friday
September 29th

The German-Soviet Boundary Friendship Treaty is signed between German representative von Ribbentrop and Soviet representative Molotov. Poland is divided into a western zone under German control and an eastern zone under Soviet control.

1939
Monday
October 2nd

The last valiant gap of Polish resistance - numbering some 4,500 soldiers under the command of Admiral Unruh - north of Danzig on the Polwysep Helski peninsula falls to the Germans.

1944
Tuesday
January 11th

The first major Allied offensive to take Cassino is launched.

1944
Friday
February 11th

A blanket retreat is enacted by the Allies in an attempt to regroup and plan a new strategy to take Cassino.

1944
Tuesday
February 15th

Following the Allied aerial bombardment, the second major Allied offensive to take Cassino is launched.

1944
Saturday
February 19th - March 13th

The Italian winter makes its arrival and postpones any further Allied offensives for the next month.

1944
Wednesday
March 15th

A third major Allied offensive is put into action.

1944
Wednesday
March 15th - March 21st

Positions on Monte Cassino are officially in Allied hands.

1944
Wednesday
March 15th

Artillery guns open up on Cassino while 600-plus Allied bombers attempt to shake the German defenders.

1944
Wednesday
March 22nd

With mounting losses in both manpower and tanks, further Allied thrusts are called off.

1944
Thursday
March 23rd - May 10th

A lengthy six-week period allows the Allies to rebuild their forces - though this period allows the Germans to increase their defensive foothold.

1944
Thursday
May 11th

The fourth offensive to take Cassino is put into action.

1944
Thursday
May 11th

A combined British, Polish and American assault converge on Cassino involving the British 13th Corps, the Polish II Corps and the US 5th Army.

1944
Thursday
May 18th

Monte Cassino falls to the Allies, costing some 50,000 casualties along both sides of the battlefield.

1944
Thursday
May 18th

The Poles take Monte Calvario.

1944
Saturday
July 1st

Lieutenant-General Komorowski heads up the resistance plans as Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Home Army in Warsaw.

1944
Saturday
July 1st

Plans by the Polish Army are laid out for a resistance and uprising in the Capital City of Warsaw against their German overseers.

1944
Wednesday
July 26th

The Polish government, in exile since the fall of their country to the invading Germans, communicates with the British government for help in staging the uprising.

1944
Thursday
July 27th

The British government promises what it can and this emerges in the form of scattered air drops of weapons and supplies.

1944
Monday
July 31st

Soviet Army forces close in on German defenders in Warsaw.

1944
Tuesday
August 1st

Three Soviet Army Fronts converge on the outskirts of Warsaw, prompting Polish General Komorowski to greenlight the uprising.

1944
Tuesday
August 1st

Roughly 30,000 Poles and scattered firearms make up the beginning of the Warsaw Uprising.

1944
Tuesday
August 1st

Uprisings begin across the Polish capital of Warsaw.

1944
Tuesday
August 1st

Upon hearing of news of the Polish uprising, an infuriated Adolph Hitler swears punishment and commits more of his troops within the Capital limits.

1944
Friday
August 4th

Realizing their chances of victory are slim against well-trained and well-armed Germans, Polish Authorities once again ask the Allies - including the Soviets - for assistance in maintaining the uprising.

1944
Thursday
August 10th

German Army forces continue to relocate to Warsaw in an attempt to quell the Polish uprising.

1944
Friday
August 11th

The Red Army finds themselves some 12 miles outside of Warsaw proper, having advanced into the Polish suburbs.

1944
Friday
August 11th

Sensing complete destruction of Warsaw and its people, the Pope himself appeals to the Allies for help.

1944
Wednesday
August 16th

Sensing his own political interests and conquests, Soviet leader Josef Stalin rejects a direct call for aid for the Poles.

1944
Sunday
August 20th

The swift and thorough German response has divided the Polish resistance into three distinct groups, all cut off from one another.

1944
Sunday
August 20th

The German Army begins their final push to crush the Polish response.

1944
Sunday
August 20th

German Army soldiers now number some 21,300 personnel in Warsaw.

1944
Friday
August 25th

SS Obergruppenfuhrer Erich von dem Bach-Zelweski details the final German push.

1944
Friday
August 25th

The Germans begin their counter-offensive against the remaining Pole units.

1944
Saturday
September 16th

Polish Army units fighting alongside the Soviet Army make a dash to support their comrades in Warsaw, this against the orders of Soviet High Command.

1944
Saturday
September 16th

Pressured by the Americans and British, Stalin gives in - just a little - and delivers a meager air drop of arms consisting of just fifty pistols and a pair of machine guns.

1944
Sunday
September 17th

Under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Zygmunt Berling, the 1st Polish Army forces engage the Germans in Warsaw but are ultimately driven back in retreat.

1944
Sunday
September 17th

Operation Market Garden is activated. Parachute landings take place at Eindhoven, Veghel, Grave and Oosterbeek.

1944
Sunday
September 17th

General Dwight Eisenhower, Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe, approves General Montgomery's Operation Market Garden.

1944
Monday
September 18th

American B-17 bombers land at Poltava, now under Soviet control, to refuel. Onboard are arms and supplies meant for the Polish resistance.

1944
Monday
September 18th

Josef Stalin refuses further Allied use of his forward airfields to resupply the Polish insurgents.

1944
Thursday
September 21st

For his actions in disobeying Soviet Army orders, Berling is stripped of his army command.

1944
Friday
September 22nd

Elements of the Polish Parachute Brigade, delayed multiple times from earlier participation in the operation, finally land south of Arnhem. Their mission is to reinforce the battered British 1st Airborne Division.

1944
Monday
September 25th

American air drops deliver their much-needed cargo to the Polish resistance below. However, the drop zones are in firm German control and supplies are captured soon after landing.

1944
Wednesday
September 27th

Despite valliant actions, the Polish Parachute Brigade is forced to surrender at Arnhem.

1944
Monday
October 2nd

Polish General Komorowski, sensing total defeat imminent, orders his Polish insurgents to surrender to the Germans.

1944
Tuesday
October 3rd

Polish military forces all surrender to the German Army, ending the valliant uprising.

1944
Tuesday
October 31st

Some 250,000 Polish civilians and soldiers of Warsaw will meet their end through execution or deportation to Nazi concentration camps as a result of the Warsaw uprising.

1945
Friday
January 12th

The Red Army enacts a massive offensive against German foes along the East Front. His targets are German Army Group A and Army Group Center located in East Prussia and Poland. The battle line is a long running front from the Lithuanian coast down to the Balkans region.

1945
Tuesday
January 16th

Adoph Hitler reorders his forces, weakening key areas of defense, to attempt a flanking manuever against the Red Army near Poznan.

1945
Wednesday
January 17th

The Polish capital city of Warsaw officially falls to the advancing Soviet Army.

1945
Thursday
February 22nd

Poznan falls to the Soviet Army after the defending German troops surrender.

1945
Saturday
February 24th

General Konev's 1st Ukranian Front claims Lower Silesia.