Poland tried to sit on two chairs. Had pact with France against Germany + with Germany against Russia. So hesitated to accept help from France when Germany began pressure. Result: Germany + Russia got together for the partition of Poland. Poles reason for not accepting French help: “We didn’t want be a French colony!"
I'm starting to believe that Warsaw has given up. It might be because of the lack of water. There's enough wood, water from the Vistula can be distilled to become potable.
The German radio reports that a great battle is taking place in East Prussia. Surrendering Warsaw before we learn the outcome of the battle is a strategic defeat. If we disarm soldiers who are defending Warsaw, it would free up enough German forces to decide the fate of this battle in their favor. But we do not know anything for sure.
I am asking for an early agreement with the Vatican to temporarily store the tapestries and the Wawel treasury, evacuated confidentially to Bucharest. They would be transported by car under the supervision of the current custodian, Świerz-Zaleski.
Please keep this matter strictly confidential.
Went to my office in the Schneider barracks: called on the French Cmdr of garrison (Colonel Marchal) and was asked to lunch with him and discovered he used to hunt at Pau, we found many mutual friends to talk about and lunch was a great success. French slovenliness, dirtyness and inefficiency are I think worse than ever; but no one could be kinder than they are. In afternoon I had visits from Duke of Gloucester accompanied by Munster and the AG (Brownrigg). Montgomery [3rd Division) and Hotblack also turned up. We seem to have collected a vast herd at GHQ - I wonder if they will all pull their weight??
September was marked by the war with Germany and its unexpected outcome that stunned and surprised us. Poland was conquered, divided... There were constant air raids, Lublin has been taken... The first orders of the invaders... Evacuation to the East and going home... We met only with Milek, Maria, and Lyusik. We don't know anything about mom and Brom...
Fine, still & fairly warm. Continued clearing & got nearly to the trellis. Note that the white rambler rose has layered itself here & there. Gave all the broccoli nitrate of potash. Picked more apples. There is still 10–15 pounds on the tree, but how many will keep I do not know. I am only trying to keep the larger ones.
When the platoon took up combat positions, I went to the very edge of the forest for reconnaissance. What did I see? Beyond the forest was Estonian land - a treeless field, not steeply descending into a hollow. Very close to me was a tall wooden tower, on top of which, with its back to us, sat an Estonian soldier with a rifle and dangled his feet. Not far from him, a peasant was plowing his land. And it's all. I stood in perplexity, asking myself: who are we here to fight? We stayed in the trench in this semi-combat posiiton. In the afternoon, it was reported that our regular units, in coordination with the Estonian government, had entered Estonia.
When we were driving up to Stoczek, we saw the burnt villages I had heard about. In every cottage, there was only a chimney left, wide at the bottom, and a kitchen stove attached to it. In one of the cottages, we could still see black iron pots on the stove. Another cottage was surrounded with tree branches on the ground. A woman was standing there and cooking something, clinging to these remains of her life. Tin dishes were lying in the ashes.
The dissatisfaction of the Soviets in relation to Estonia is already very dangerous. Estonian independence is hanging on a thread, and only depends on the grace of the Soviets. After Estonia, it could be Latvia's turn, and then, perhaps, Lithuania's.
All the troops have been withdrawn to positions behind the Maginot Line. Only reconnaissance squads, the eyes of the division, hold the front, withdrawing little by little until relieved by another division. These men are our antennae, and our shield, they prepare our advance or cover our retreat, acting as a very mobile but thin screen, being able to put up an intense fire from their automatic weapons. We are evacuating the ground taken from the Boche.
Is this good tactics, I wonder? The Boche is showing himself more aggressive now, Captain Vinchon, of the reconnaissance squad, held a German village; it received 500 shells - 105's - in half an hour, he had to retire, and the enemy then occupied it. But during the night Vinchon retook the village by means of hand-grenades. Thirteen killed altogether. Vinchon is a notary of Rheims, one of the best. We lunched together a week ago.
Drove to Berlin.
The Führer expressed his thanks to the army group and army commanders. He declared that if the war could not be ended by diplomatic means, he must and would force a decision. A compromise is out of the question.
Brauchitsch [Commander-in-Chief of the Army] and Halder [Chief of the General Staff) spoke to me briefly about my new assignment. I am to relinquish command in the east as soon as possible and go to Berlin. My staff is coming with me. Good, for it is, with a few exceptions, outstanding.