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Leaflets on Warsaw

To the population of Warsaw!

Your Government has made the city a battleground and has divorced it of its character as an open city. Your military leadership has not only allowed heavy artillery to fire into the city, it has also called on you to erect barricades in every street and to offer resistance to the German troops.

Your Government has violated international law in its request that the civilian population take up weapons to resist the German troops and thereby engage in guerrilla warfare. Because parts of the population of Warsaw have heeded this call, Warsaw has become a battleground. In spite of this, on the orders of the Führer, only those sections of the city which are of military significance, such as train stations, airports, barracks, and transit routes, have hitherto been subjected to bombing.



✍    Also today

The looting of shops continues. They take everything they can. At the Epsztajns' store in Reymonta Square, they stole the entire stock of jewelry and watches. The poor Epsztajns barely managed to escape alive.

In the afternoon, I wanted to go downtown to find out about our school, but my parents wouldn't let me. Tomorrow Mom will learn what's going on from a fellow who was supposedly in school on Monday.

The night passed peacefully and restlessly. Nobody interfered with us, but we can't hear the shots outside of Warsaw. Based on the vehicles that passed us, I guessed there was more than a division attacking Praga. Today our radio reported that the Germans took Zamość. And at the same time, that our army from Poznań and Pomerania is pushing forward from Kutno to Warsaw. I suppose the Germans are trying to surround it and we are breaking through them. It will be a very important battle, will it decide about the fate of the campaign or will it just be an episode?

As usual, I begin with an update from the Warsaw Defense Command. We start with the words "artillery fire", which was unleashed on Warsaw today. This fire was defined as harassing fire. Every now and again the enemy shoots a series of shots, trying to intimidate  Warsaw with this harassing fire. The enemy also shoots grenades, containing shrapnel, to explode in the air. So they blow up in the air throwing debris around. These types of missiles are directed at living targets, not at destroying the fortifications. At living targets, and therefore at people; in this case, these missiles are directed precisely at the people of Warsaw. The enemy thinks we are terrified, that it has already overpowered the inhabitants of Warsaw. It even transmitted a message saying that if Warsaw does not stop resisting, it will fire at the city. As if until now it had not fired at Warsaw, but at London or Paris and left us in peace.

I heard in church today that Warsaw is still fighting to defend itself, that it is not surrounded, only attacked "from the left". I have a crazy impatient longing to get there soon.

From Kalina's diary: they go to the hospital before dinner. Today in the morning someone yelled in the hospital yard that English planes were flying. Everyone went out into the yard, and the planes dropped two bombs. Fortunately, they didn't explode. Next to the hospital, however, several bombs exploded and the wardrobes fell, and the paintings and windows broke. The sick wailed terribly. The wounded were being brought in, nurses were losing their heads. Patients hid under the beds. They are constantly bringing the sick and wounded to the hospital. Among them, there were several soldiers who were shot with bullets from planes while lying on the ground. Bullets passed through their lungs. They are also bringing in the wounded from underneath the debris.

Something special happened today: I washed in warm water for the first time in 14 days, partly thanks to reports written until 1933, they served to heat the water.

At 3:15 pm German planes dropped leaflets over Warsaw, here is the content: We ask the city to surrender. If this does not happen, the civilian population will have 12 hours to leave the city and exit in the direction of Siedlce and Garwolin, after which the German military authorities will consider the city a fortress and act accordingly.

Meanwhile, the Germans are still shelling Warsaw. Citizens are looking for shelter on lower levels of the buildings and waiting for their fate. People are constantly on the move between the suburbs and the centre in search of safe havens. They are often driven by pure chance or an instinct telling them to pack their belongings and go. Sometimes it's lead by the example of other people or friends claiming one district to be safer than the other.

Dad got vacation for the weekend. He visited us in a simple dark gray uniform. He had barely sat down in the bathtub when the bell rang. It was an order. It's getting serious now and he has to go to the battlefield. 

According to information provided to General Burhardt by General Denc, the British government entered negotiations with the Soviet government. The main topic is to be the blockade of Germany from the East. News from the same source that negotiations with Italy are on the right track and are to be completed within a week, with Italy joining the anti-German coalition.

Leaflets on Warsaw

Hereby the following appeal is being addressed to the military commander of Warsaw:

  1. Within twelve hours, all sections of the city are to be handed over to the German troops, which have surrounded it, for the purpose of occupation without a fight.
  2. Within the same period, the Polish troops in Warsaw are to surrender to the German military commanders.
  3. If these demands are fulfilled, the nearest German military commander is to be informed of the intent to surrender.
  4. If these demands are not fulfilled, the civilian population has twelve hours to evacuate the city area along the routes leading to Sieldce and Garwolin. In this case, after the twelve hours have expired, the entire city of Warsaw will be regarded as a combat zone with all the consequences this entails. The twelve hours commence with the dropping of this leaflet.



French troops between the Rhine and the Moselle are seeking to conquer observation points through a series of specific actions. They were successful in several locations.

The area near the Luxembourg border, from where French troops were forced out on the 12th inst. by the German counterattack, was reconquered by the French. Armoured weapons in the fighting on both sides.

Air force on both sides takes part in the fighting and conducts reconnaissance. According to French aviators, German aircraft clearly avoid combat during encounters.

The village is large, meandering, in two settlements, along the shore of a deep, little river. The locals fish. Actually, they live here properly, almost all of them are in the collective farm. There are only a few men. Most have been arrested for their former ties abroad. There are almost only “widows” left in the village. This, it would appear, has left its own mark. If inside the houses everything is always clean and tidy, then in the village — fences are falling apart, bridges are rotting, there are broken carts and sledges…

A tragedy in Poland, days of drama, and the poor Polish radio in Vilnius – the last and probably the only one because even the Polish radio station in Baranowicze was damaged by the Germans and fell silent (Warsaw II is still working sometimes) – it mixes war news and programmes related to the war with mawkish music to put on a brave face and fake composure and calm, despite tears and emotions, and soothe listeners with ordinary fare, as if nothing was happening. Poor Vilnius radio must distract the grim mood of Polish listeners and avoid resembling a funeral home. But it makes an unpleasant and painful impression: as if someone played a cheerful little waltz at a funeral.

Chilly & misty in the morning, sunny but not too warm in the day, a shower in the afternoon. 

Took up & burnt the final lot of peas, & dug over that patch. Arranged to sell off the March 8 pullets @ 5/6 a bird (paid 4/6 for them). 

11 eggs. Sold 1 score @ 3/–. Total this week: 60.

Yesterday, the commander of the Belorussian Military District, Comrade Kovalyov, Commander of the Second Rank, held a meeting with the high command of the corps, which took place in Uzda in the town’s theatre. The meeting was top secret. Comrade Kovalyov announced at the meeting that a government decision had been made that we will take action to liberate the western regions of Belarus which are under Polish control. Comrade Kovalyov asked us commanders to ensure that the troops display iron discipline and order; so that the divisions, soldiers and officers would be loyal towards the population. The strongest measures should be used to stop looting and other manifestations which could disgrace our army.