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Posts Tagged ‘WW II’

Hitler’s Order of the Day Calling for Invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece, Berlin, April 6, 1941

SOLDIERS OF THE SOUTHEAST FRONT:

Since early this morning the German people are at war with the Belgrade government of intrigue. We shall only lay down arms when this band of ruffians has been definitely and most emphatically eliminated, and the last Briton has left this part of the European Continent, and that these misled people realize that they must thank Britain for this situation, they must thank England, the greatest warmonger of all time. The German people can enter into this new struggle with the inner satisfaction that its leaders have done everything to bring about a peaceful settlement.

We pray to God that He may lead our soldiers on the path and bless them as hitherto.

In accordance with the policy of letting others fight for her, as she did in the case of Poland, Britain again tried to involve Germany in the struggle in which Britain hoped that she would finish off the German people once and for all, to win the war, and if possible to destroy the entire German Army.

In a few weeks long ago the German soldiers on the Eastern Front, Poland, swept aside this instrument of British policy. On April 9, 1940, Britain again attempted to reach its goal by a thrust on the German north flank, the thrust at Norway.

In an unforgettable struggle the German soldiers in Norway eliminated the British within a period of a few weeks.

What the world did not deem possible the German people have achieved. Again, only a few weeks later, Churchill thought the moment right to make a renewed thrust through the British Allies, France and Belgium, into the German region of the Ruhr. The victorious hour of our soldiers on the West Front began.

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Franklin Delano Roosevelt: On Land Lease (March 15, 1941)

This dinner of the White House Correspondents’ Association is unique. It is the first one at which I have made a speech in all these eight years. It differs from the press conferences that you and I hold twice a week, for you cannot ask me any questions tonight; and everything that I have to say is word for word “on the record.”

For eight years you and I have been helping each other. I have been trying to keep you informed of the news of Washington, of the Nation, and of the world, from the point of view of the Presidency. You, more than you realize, have been giving me a great deal of information about what the people of this country are thinking and saying.

In our press conferences, as at this dinner tonight, we include reporters representing papers and news agencies of many other lands. To most of them it is a matter of constant amazement that press conferences such as ours can exist in any Nation in the world.

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My Fellow Americans:

Over a year and a half ago I said this to the Congress: “The militarists in Berlin, and Rome and Tokyo started this war, but the massed angered forces of common humanity will finish it.”

Today that prophecy is in the process of being fulfilled. The massed, angered forces of common humanity are on the march. They are going forward — on the Russian front, in the vast Pacific area, and into Europe — converging upon their ultimate objectives: Berlin and Tokyo.

I think the first crack in the Axis has come. The criminal, corrupt Fascist regime in Italy is going to pieces.

The pirate philosophy of the Fascists and the Nazis cannot stand adversity. The military superiority of the United Nations — on sea and land, and in the air — has been applied in the right place and at the right time.

Hitler refused to send sufficient help to save Mussolini. In fact, Hitler’s troops in Sicily stole the Italians’ motor equipment, leaving Italian soldiers so stranded that they had no choice but to surrender. Once again the Germans betrayed their Italian allies, as they had done time and time again on the Russian front and in the long retreat from Egypt, through Libya and Tripoli, to the final surrender in Tunisia.

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My Fellow Americans:

Once upon a time, a few years ago, there was a city in our Middle West which was threatened by a destructive flood in the great river. The waters had risen to the top of the banks. Every man, woman and child in that city was called upon to fill sand bags in order to defend their homes against the rising waters. For many days and nights, destruction and death stared them in the face.

As a result of the grim, determined community effort, that city still stands. Those people kept the levees above the peak of the flood. All of them joined together in the desperate job that (which) had to be done — business men, workers, farmers, and doctors, and preachers — people of all races.

To me, that town is a living symbol of what community cooperation can accomplish.

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German people!

Your country and mine are now at war. Your Government has bombed and invaded the free and independent State of Poland, which this country is in honour bound to defend. Because your troops were not withdrawn in response to the Note which the British Government addressed to the German Government, war has followed.

With the horrors of war we are familiar. God knows this country has done everything possible to prevent this calamity. But now that the invasion of Poland by Germany has taken place, it has become inevitable.

You are told by your Government that you are fighting because Poland rejected your Leader’s offer and resorted to force. What are the facts? The so-called “offer” was made to the Polish Ambassador in Berlin on Thursday evening, two hours before the announcement by your Government that it had been “rejected.” So far from having been rejected, there had been no time even to consider it.

Your Government had previously demanded that a Polish representative should be sent to Berlin within twenty-four hours to conclude an agreement. At that time the 16 Points subsequently put forward had not even been communicated to the Polish Government. The Polish representative was expected to arrive within a fixed time to sign an agreement which he had not even seen. This is not negotiation. This is a dictate. To such methods no self-respecting and powerful State could assent. Negotiations on a free and equal basis might well have settled the matter in dispute.

You may ask why Great Britain is concerned. We are concerned because we gave our word of honour to defend Poland against aggression. Why did we feel it necessary to pledge ourselves to defend this Eastern Power when our interests lie in the West, and when your Leader has said he has no interest to the West? The answer is-and I regret to have to say it-that nobody in this country any longer places any trust in your Leader’s word.

He gave his word that he would respect the Locarno Treaty; he broke it.
He gave his word that he neither wished nor intended to annex Austria; he broke it.
He declared that he would not incorporate the Czechs in the Reich; he did so.
He gave his word after Munich (Agreement concluded at Munich, September 29, 1938, between Germany, Great Britain, France and Italy) that he had no further territorial demands in Europe; he broke it.
He gave his word that he wanted no Polish provinces; he broke it.
He has sworn to you for years that he was the mortal enemy of Bolshevism (Treaty of Nonaggression Between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics); he is now its ally.

Can you wonder his word is, for us, not worth the paper it is written on?

The German-Soviet Pact was a cynical volte face, designed to shatter the Peace Front against aggression. This gamble failed. The Peace Front stands firm. Your Leader is now sacrificing you, the German people, to the still more monstrous gamble of a war to extricate himself from the impossible position into which he has led himself and you.

In this war we are not fighting against you, the German people, for whom we have no bitter feeling, but against a tyrannous and forsworn regime which has betrayed not only its own people but the whole of Western civilisation and all that you and we hold dear.

May God defend the right!

Source: The British War Bluebook

See also: British Declaration Of War on Germany- Radio Broadcast – 3 Sept 1939

Proclamation by Adolf Hitler – September 1,1939

Invasion of Poland Maps – September 1939

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To all Frenchmen

France has lost a battle !
But France has not lost the war ! (La France a perdu une bataille! Mais la France n’a pas perdu la guerre!)

A makeshift government may have capitulated, giving way to panic, forgetting honour, delivering their country into bondage. Yet nothing is lost !
Nothing is lost, because this war is a world war. In the free universe, immense forces have not yet swung into operation. Some day these forces will crush the enemy. On that day, France must be present at the victory. She will then regain her liberty and her greatness. Such is my goal, my only goal !
That is why I urge all Frenchmen, wherever they may be, to unite with me in action, in sacrifice and in hope.

Our country is in mortal danger.
Let us all fight to save her.

Long live France !

General de Gaulle
Headquarters,
4, Carlton Gardens,
London, S.W.1.

Source:
Foundation and Institute Charles de Gaulle

See also: The Appeal of 18th June – Charles de Gaulle
Franco-German Armistice : June 25, 1940

The French Capitulation – June 25, 1940, archive movies

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Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Radio Address to the French People on the North African Invasion

November 7, 1942

My friends, who suffer day and night, under the crushing yoke of the Nazis, I speak to you as one who was with your Army and Navy in France in 1918. I have held all my life the deepest friendship for the French people- for the entire French people. I retain and cherish the friendship of hundreds of French people in France and outside of France. I know your farms, your villages, and your cities. I know your soldiers, professors, and workmen. I know what a precious heritage of the French people are your homes, your culture, and the principles of democracy in France. I salute again and reiterate my faith in Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity. No two Nations exist which are more united by historic and mutually friendly ties than the people of France and the United States.

Americans, with the assistance of the United Nations, are striving for their own safe future as well as the restoration of the ideals, the liberties, and the democracy of all those who have lived under the Tricolor.

We come among you to repulse the cruel invaders who would remove forever your rights of self-government, your rights to religious freedom, and your rights to live your own lives in peace and security.

We come among you solely to defeat and rout your enemies. Have faith in our words. We do not want to cause you any harm.

We assure you that once the menace of Germany and Italy is removed from you, we shall quit your territory at once.

I am appealing to your realism, to your self-interest and national ideals.
Do not obstruct, I beg of you, this great purpose.

Help us where you are able, my friends, and we shall see again the glorious day when liberty and peace shall reign again on earth.
Vive la France eternelle!

See also: Franklin Roosevelt Speeches

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