FROM THE ARCHIVES (1939): Both Sides Must Deescalate the German-Polish Conflict

May 20, 2021

The Washington Free Beacon presents "From The Archives," where we probe the annals of journalistic history to find out what the past might be able to teach us about the media's coverage of current events.

Today's date: Sept. 3, 1939.


Associated Press:

Reich Chancellory, Berlin —At least 225 German citizens were murdered by Polish forces in clashes along the contested Vistula River, the Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda reported over the weekend. Lightly armed members of the popularly elected Nazi Party retaliated by making a handful of citizens' arrests in accordance with Herr Hitler's transformative racial purity initiatives.

German casualties included dozens of infants and disabled children, Reich Minister Joseph Goebbels told the Associated Press. Polish casualties were negligible, according to Goebbels, or at least difficult to ascertain given the "transmortal and shapeshifting tendencies" of the Jewish aggressors.

New York Times:

Princeton, New Jersey — A coalition of American academics released a statement Saturday condemning the Polish aggression against Nazi Party officials in the recently established German city of Danzig. The enlightened experts called on the United States and European governments to punish the Polish state by banning imports of kielbasa and Toruń gingerbread.

"We, the members of the enlightened academic community, are appalled at the ongoing attacks on innocent Nazis by the Empire of Poland," the statement read. "This unprovoked aggression represents the latest chapter in a decades-long campaign of systemic humiliation of the German people under the Treaty of Versailles, which has transformed the Reich into a prison for its 70 million inhabitants."

New York Herald Tribune:

EDITORIAL — Both sides must immediately deescalate the conflict brewing on the German-Polish border. That said, no reasonable person could argue that both sides are equally to blame. Poland's reckless determination to defend its territory, for example, only serves to exacerbate the violence.

Given the Führer's enlightened leadership and ambitious progressive agenda, we must question the Polish people's stubborn rejection of Germany's efforts to incorporate them into the Third Reich. With respect to the Nazi regime's so-called atrocities against Jews and other enemies of the state, the time has long past for serious-minded individuals to denounce these bogus allegations for what they are: a malicious smear campaign financed by a shadowy network of elite bankers.

Better Homes & Gardens:

A note to our readers:

We, the editorial staff at Better Homes & Gardens, take pride in our judicious coverage of contemporary landscaping and its role at the forefront of art and culture. After much contemplation, we have decided that our July 1939 profile of Ola Tomaszewski, aka "Granny Roses," fell short of our editorial standards.

At the time of publication, Better Homes & Gardens was not aware of Tomaszewski's previous remarks, made during a March 1939 interview with Ladies' Home Journal, describing Adolf Hitler as a "tyrant" and "a bully who should mind his own goddamned business and keep his sissy little mustache out of Poland."

We regret the lapse in judgment, and would like to extend our gratitude to the diligent readers who wrote letters to express their justified outrage at our misguided decision to provide a platform for poisonous bigotry.

Happy gardening!

Published under: Germany , Israel , Parody