Adolph Hitler first came to power in 1933 when he was elected Chancellor of Germany. He soon replaced the elected president and became a dictator. In 1934 he signed a non-aggression pact with Poland.

In his book Mein Kampf he told the world exactly what he planned to do, but most people treated it as a new novel. However, political minds were quickly changed after he remilitarized the Rhineland (1936) and annexed Austria (March 1938).

In September that year, British and French leaders signed the Munich Agreement, ceding the Sudetenland to Germany in return for Hitler’s promise to resolve all future conflicts peacefully.

British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain returned to London, proudly proclaiming one of the most untrue statements of all time. “Peace in our time!”.

Hitler’s promise was like pie crust, quickly broken. In March 1939, he dismantled the Czechoslovak state. Britain and France immediately guaranteed the integrity of the Polish State. Threats were made against Hitler. He ignored them. He was hell-bent for leather to have a war.

On April 28th, 1939, he withdrew from the non-aggression pact signed with Poland. He then signed a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union in August 1939 (to cover his backside). The deal with the Soviets permitted the Germans to attack Poland without fear of Soviet intervention.

On September 1st, 1939, Germany invaded Poland, using a contrived excuse that Poland, Great Britain and France were planning to dismember Germany.

On September 1st, 1939, Germany’s surprise attack caught much of the world off guard. Britain and France declared war on Germany two days later. The Soviet Union invaded Poland on September 17th. Ten days later, Warsaw surrendered to the Nazis.

The Nazi hordes soon occupied most of Europe. World War II had begun. I remember it. I was there. What remains of WWII veterans remember it, too.

Sound familiar? I thought so.

Raymond Strait – Hemet

Rusty Strait

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