On September 1, 1939, in accordance with the Ribbentrop-Molotow pact signed in August 1939, which divided Poland between the aggressors on the line of the rivers Narew, Wisla and San, the Third Reich attacks Poland by land, sea and air. Yet another world war becomes a reality.

On September 3, France and Great Britain, in alliance with Poland, declare war on Germany, but do not get militarily involved despite determined resistance; the overwhelming German forces quickly advance, crushing the polish army on their way. On September 6, the polish army is ordered to retreat behind the Wisla-San Line, and a day later Germans reach Warsaw. On September 17, 1939, the Soviet Union joins Germany, Violating former agreements with Poland “If there is no government- Polish Ambassador Waclaw Grzybowski is told in Moscow”. After the Soviet aggression, subsequent points of resistance fall, the last regular troops of the Polish Army under the command of Gen. Franciszek Kleeberg surrender near Kock (place) on October 5, 1939.

The occupation begins. Its cruelty exceeds everything that poles have experienced over past centuries of Prussian and Russian servitude. On the basis of the pact signed on September 28, the two occupants divide the territory of Poland into two approximately equal parts. On October 12, Germans create the “General Government of the occupied Polish Territory “covering an area of 98 thousand Km and divided into four districts Krakow, Radom, Lublin and Warsaw. The Soviets incorporate the seized territory into the Ukrainian and Byelorussian soviet Republics. Lithuania is granted the Wilno District, and part of the polish Carpathians is incorporated into Slovakia.

Both occupants introduce the policy of extermination of polish leaders. From the very first days there are numerous carefully planned deportations, expulsions, various types of Persecution, Administrative harassments and executions. The Requisition of private property becomes common. Food Supply disturbances threaten the biological existence of the whole nation. For the smallest offenses one can be punished with death, imprisonment or internment in a concentration camp. The first camp – Stutthof – is established as early as 1939. The existing social and moral order collapses. Polish syllabuses are forbidden and on the German-Occupied territory school education is limited to an absolute minimum.

The soviets try to keep up appearances by allowing Polish as the language of instruction – but in return there is intense communist indoctrination. On the areas occupied by the Germans, Jews are particularly persecuted. The Germans force them to live in Ghettos: the first was created in October 1939 in Piotrkow Trybunalski, the next in Lodz in 1940, and yet another in October 1940 in Warsaw. Starting in December 1942, The Germans murder Jews in extermination camps in Chelmno, Sobibor, Belzec, Treblinka, and Auschwitz-Birkenau.