1939-09-01 Gdańsk-Danzig, Poland / Since 5 o’clock 45 / Seit 5 Uhr 45 / Desde as 5 horas 45 / Desde las 5 en punto 45

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The Invasion of Poland was the  invasion by Nazi Germany into Poland that marked the beginning of World War II.

The Luftwaffe started bombing Wieluń at 04:40, five minutes before the shelling of Westerplatte, which has traditionally been considered the beginning of World War II.

The Bombing of Wieluń by the German Luftwaffe was the first bombings of the war. It killed an estimated 1,300 civilians, and destroyed 90% of the town centre.

Five minutes later, the German battleship Schleswig-Holstein opened fire on the free city of Gdańsk-Danzig.

A small group of German SS operatives dressed in Polish uniforms seized the Gleiwitz radio station. The goal was to make the attack look like the work of anti-German Polish saboteurs.

To make the attack look connvincing, the Germans murdered Franciszek Honiok, a 43-year-old unmarried German farmer known for sympathizing with the Poles.

He had been arrested the previous day and dressed to look like a saboteur, he was killed by lethal injection, given gunshot wounds, and left dead at the scene so that he appeared to have been killed while attacking the station.

Several prisoners from the Dachau concentration camp were drugged, shot dead on the site, and their faces disfigured to make identification impossible.

The invasion was referred to by Germany as the 1939 Defensive War since Hitler proclaimed that Poland had attacked Germany.

Polen hat heute Nacht zum ersten Mal auf unserem eigenen Territorium auch mit bereits regulären Soldaten geschossen. Seit 5:45 Uhr wird jetzt zurückgeschossen! Und von jetzt ab wird Bombe mit Bombe vergolten! Wer mit Gift kämpft, wird mit Giftgas bekämpft.

Wer selbst sich von den Regeln einer humanen Kriegsführung entfernt, kann von uns nichts anderes erwarten, als dass wir den gleichen Schritt tun. Ich werde diesen Kampf, ganz gleich, gegen wen, so lange führen, 

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