Friday, March 03, 2017

Blast from our WW2 past....Gleiwitz Radio Station Incident

Thanks to Alex for the info!


A quick and dirty from Wikipedia...this subject deserves a much better/detailed reading...
Much of what is known about the Gleiwitz incident comes from the affidavit of SS-Sturmbannf├╝hrer Alfred Naujocks at the Nuremberg Trials. In his testimony, he stated that he organized the incident under orders from Reinhard Heydrich and Heinrich M├╝ller, chief of the Gestapo.[1]
On the night of 31 August 1939, a small group of German operatives dressed in Polish uniforms and led by Naujocks[2] seized the Gleiwitz station and broadcast a short anti-German message in Polish (sources vary on the content of the message). The Germans' goal was to make the attack and the broadcast look like the work of anti-German Polish saboteurs.[2][3]

Heydrich (left) with Karl Hermann Frank at Prague Castle in 1941
To make the attack seem more convincing, the Germans used human corpses to pass them off as Polish attackers. They murdered Franciszek Honiok, a 43-year-old unmarried German Silesian Catholic farmer known for sympathizing with the Poles. He had been arrested the previous day by the Gestapo. He was dressed to look like a saboteur, then 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. His corpse was subsequently presented to the police and press as proof of the attack.[4]
In addition to Honiok, several prisoners from the Dachau concentration camp[2] were drugged, shot dead on the site, and their faces disfigured to make identification impossible.[3][5] The Germans referred to them by the code phrase "Konserve" ("canned goods"). For this reason, some sources incorrectly refer to the incident as "Operation Canned Goods".[6] In an oral testimony at the trials, Erwin von Lahousen stated that his division of the Abwehr was one of two that were given the task of providing Polish uniforms, equipment, and identification cards, and that he was later told by Wilhelm Canaris that people from concentration camps had been disguised in these uniforms and ordered to attack the radio stations.[7]
I have a passing knowledge of WW2 and never knew this story.  Thanks to Alex referencing it, I'm gonna really dig into this to learn more (intrigued doesn't begin to describe it!) and thought it worthy of sharing with others that might not know of this event.

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