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Warsaw Uprising

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by Wolfy, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. Wolfy

    Wolfy Ace

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    I looked through a fantastic new Osprey feature about the Warsaw Uprising rebellion-

    The bravery and resourcefulness of the Polish fighters was simply astounding. But I do keep in mind that they had years of planning.. but still, a tremendous feat against the German security troops.

    During the battle, two Panther tanks were captured and used against their owners-and liberated a prison area of over 250 captured poles..

    And there was a even a night counterattack with 1 Polish-made APC and one captured German 251 halftrack..Many Polish fighters even wore Waffen-SS smocks captured from an SS storage facility..

    Only 25-35% of the Poles Home Army units actually had weapons- and with a tiny amount of ammunition of that. Out of the armed poles, most had only pistols. There were several hundred Mauser action type rifles, 650 crude SMGs, and a few dozen heavy machineguns and just over a hundred light machineguns. Two dozen PIATs. 44,000 grenades and thousands of molotov cocktails.

    There was only a tiny amount of small arms ammo: ie. there were only 100 rounds per machinegun, 30 rounds per pistol at the start of the uprising. As the battle ranged on, they relied heavily on captured weapons from German dead..

    Regardless of this, the Home Army did not run out of ammo in 63 days and inflicted high losses on the attackers- even higher than they suffered. The Germans had supermortar, assault gun companies (Hetzer, Jadgpanzer IV, Brummbar, and even 2 Sturmtigers), and even a few batteries of artillery and Stuka support. Regular army German combat engineer detachments armed with Goliaths, flamethrowers, explosives, etc. were attached to the maurading SS. The German forces were well equipped with automatic weapons and explosives in general. Yet what should have been a cakewalk turned into an urban hell...
     
  2. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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  3. Wolfy

    Wolfy Ace

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    Descriptions of SS behavior in Warsaw were absolutely terrifying- this was truly a battle of extermination. While the Poles were counterattacking one day with captured German AFV and liberating their comrades, SS-Brigade D (half composed of convicts, the other half concentration camp prisoners led by 5% full SS men) was at work- exterminating 1,500 civilians in the same time period..With three hospitals full of Polish doctors, nurses, orderlies etc. mass murdered by the same group.

    These crimes encouraged the Poles to keep resisting to the bitter end..

    150,000-200,000 Polish civilians killed in 63 days, many directly killed by the SS troops with small arms and explosives- absolutely horrific.
     
  4. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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  5. Heidi

    Heidi Dishonorably Discharged

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    It's still a great effort by the up rising people but they did hit the German army when the Germans were starting or allready losing there power.Plus the Warsaw Uprising people had surprise on there side.
    If there was no suprize and the Germans were at there full might,it would have been a different story.
    But i am not going to take there credit of the Warsaw uprising people.
    There is a saying for this kinds of combats- Were there is a will,there is a way.
     
  6. BWilson

    BWilson Member

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    Not to mention the deliberate destruction of remaining intact structures in Warsaw after the battle as punishment for defying the Reich.

    Less well known is the uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943 in which the Jewish men took on their German oppressors mainly with pistols. Still, this uprising lasted almost a month.

    Cheers

    BW
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    The ghetto uprising immediately came to my mind. I read two novels about it many years ago, Leon Uris' Mila 18 and John Hersey's The Wall. Both give a stirring account of the actions.

    Here is more on the uprising.

    The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

    Many Jews in ghettos across eastern Europe tried to organize resistance against the Germans and to arm themselves with smuggled and homemade weapons. [​IMG]Between 1941 and 1943, underground resistance movements formed in about 100 Jewish groups. The most famous attempt by Jews to resist the Germans in armed fighting occurred in the Warsaw ghetto.
    In the summer of 1942, about 300,000 Jews were deported from Warsaw to Treblinka. [​IMG]When reports of mass murder in the killing center leaked back to the Warsaw ghetto, a surviving group of mostly young people formed an organization called the Z.O.B. (for the Polish name, Zydowska Organizacja Bojowa, which means Jewish Fighting Organization). [​IMG]The Z.O.B., led by 23-year-old Mordecai Anielewicz, issued a proclamation calling for the Jewish people to resist going to the railroad cars. In January 1943, Warsaw ghetto fighters fired upon German troops as they tried to round up another group of ghetto inhabitants for deportation. Fighters used a small supply of weapons that had been smuggled into the ghetto. After a few days, the troops retreated. This small victory inspired the ghetto fighters to prepare for future resistance.
    [​IMG]On April 19, 1943, the Warsaw ghetto uprising began after German troops and police entered the ghetto to deport its surviving inhabitants. Seven hundred and fifty fighters fought the heavily armed and well-trained Germans. [​IMG]The ghetto fighters were able to hold out for nearly a month, but on May 16, 1943, the revolt ended. The Germans had slowly crushed the resistance. Of the more than 56,000 Jews captured, about 7,000 were shot, and the remainder were deported to killing centers or concentration camps.
     
  8. Hufflepuff

    Hufflepuff Semi-Frightening Mountain Goat

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    The 600mm Mortar Ziu was used at the rebellion by the Germans, one of the few times the Karl type mortars were used.

    Here's two pictures of it (the second one shows it firing DURING the rebellion):
     

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  9. Wolfy

    Wolfy Ace

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    Hitler wanted Warsaw to disappear from the face of the earth- 35% of Warsaw was annihilated in 63 days- with 85% of the city destroyed by the time the Soviets entered the "city"..
     
  10. hucks216

    hucks216 Member

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    Just thought that I would post some attachments here of an item that I have just posted in the Newest Militaria section due to the relevance - a Polizei Dienstpass to a member of a Polizei Rgt involved in the Ghetto Uprising. Polizei Rgt 23 receives two minor mentions in The Stroop Report...
     

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  11. krecik

    krecik recruit

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  12. 36thID

    36thID Member

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    Polish Citizens and Polish Troops of WW 2, were some of the bravest people the world will ever know. Germans and Russians tormented these folks. May they always live in peace.
     
  13. Drucius

    Drucius Member

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    Yes, both uprisings are heroic but the Jewish Uprising is the more incredible and astonishing event, IMO.
     
  14. GrandsonofAMarine

    GrandsonofAMarine Member

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    This reminds me of a a quote from Mexican Revolutionary Emiliano Zapata: "It is better to die on your feet than live on your knees."

    The Poles and Jews of Warsaw who resisted certainly were believers in this.
     
  15. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  16. Richard

    Richard Expert

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