The German Invasion of Poland (1939):

The Beginning of World War Two in Europe

German Invasion of Poland

German Troops During the Invasion of Poland

German Invasion of Poland (September 1, 1939-October 6, 1939)--Germany invaded Poland on September 1, and Britain, France, and Canada, declared war on Germany on September 3. The Soviet Union joined the war on Germany's side on September 17, with the Soviet Invasion of Poland from the east. The German Invasion of Poland (called Operation Case White/Unternehmen Fall Weiss by the Germans), marks the beginning of World War Two in Europe. (NOTE: World War Two in Asia is generally considered to have begun with the Japanese Invasion of China in 1937).

See also: Images and Pictures of the German Invasion of Poland and Video and Film of the German Invasion of Poland (1939)

Events in Europe and Asia had been building up over the past several years toward a general war in Europe, pitting Germany against several of the Allied nations that defeated the Germans in the First World War (which was known at that point as The World War, or as The Great War). Germany had violated the Versailles Treaty, which ended World War One by re-arming its military, and by engaging in a military occupation of the Rhineland region in 1936. The Rhineland was German territory, but had been designated as an area off-limits to the German military as a condition of ending World War One. Also, in 1938, Germany took over its smaller German-speaking neighbor, Austria, ending its existence as a separate nation and making it a part of Germany.

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Links and Resources on the German Invasion of Poland:

1. Kohn, George C. Dictionary of Wars. New York: Facts On File Publications. 1986.

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