European resistance movement: Myths and Realities

After the Second World War, public opinion in many countries was to rule the pride and satisfaction of national resistance to Nazism. Underground movements in the occupied countries of Europe are now regarded as the centers of the heroic struggle of the inhuman invaders, their work is incredibly bloated. This state of historical scholarship continues to this day. As a result, the historical reality is presented as a conflict of black and white: Black Germans were considered, light, clean, white — resistance movement. It was a kind of social norm: it appears that virtually all resisted the Nazis — except, of course, the collaborators, who allegedly were in the minority.

But systematic studies contradict this view. First, the resistance of the peoples of Europe had only a limited effect and quite rapidly in large part faded. Europe was occupied by Nazi Germany, mainly from 1939 to 1941. In 1939, Poland was conquered in 1940 — France and some Scandinavian countries in 1941 — the Balkans. However, the resistance movement in these countries has become an influential factor towards the end of the war, after a few years. Even the most serious anti-fascist uprising broke out in Europe until the end of the war, shortly before the release of rebel areas armies allied troops. Here are just two examples.

The Warsaw Uprising, organized by the Polish Home Army, led by General Tadeusz Bor-Komorowski, began in the summer of 1944. By the time the Red Army was already near Warsaw. A French underground rebellion started mainly after the landing at Normandy landing of Allied June 6, 1944. And in the Paris uprising began on Aug. 19, just 6 days before the forces of "Free France" under the command of General Leclerc entered the city.

One reason for this phenomenon is that in science called the "historical time" — the time needed to carry out the efforts of people to that required to achieve their historic goal for the accomplishment of a historical action. Simply put, the clandestine organization could not arise, as they say, one day there was always a certain amount of time between the occupation and the creation of the underground Resistance. Guerrilla warfare requires the creation of an institutional framework, the collection of weapons, conduct preparatory activities. That is one of the reasons that immediately after the occupation of underground movements in many countries did not have a major impact.

Another reason for the weak resistance of the German fascist invaders were features of the mentality of the vast majority of the European nations. In Europe, it was believed that the occupier has the right to compel the vanquished. As a result, accurate execution of orders of the authorized persons of German turned as if in a conventional norm. It is appropriate to draw a parallel with the Napoleonic wars. When Napoleon conquered almost all of Europe, the resistance to it in the form of guerrilla warfare had only Russia and Spain. The peoples of the rest of Europe sat quiet as a mouse under a broom, and twitching. The rejection of any violation of law and order, even if the law and order is established fierce enemy, has played with many of the carriers of the European mentality cruel joke. Thus, in the Minsk ghetto, along with Belarusian Jews kept their countrymen from Western European countries, including Germany. And so, despite the fact that all the prisoners waiting for a sad ending, in various forms of resistance involved oppressors, as we know, only the local Jews, the so-called stop-Juden. Western as their counterparts entirely relied on His Majesty the law, whoever he may come. As a result, the percentage of Western European Jews who survived in the Minsk ghetto was zero.

You can give another example. Dutch Jews relied on the Dutch, the laws of the state, they trusted the practice of civilized society and life were at an impasse when they again made against the law, according to which the law-abiding Dutch took the salute in front of the occupation administration and with a clear conscience began to issue their Jewish neighbors SS massacre. It is not surprising that out of 140,000 Dutch Jews at the beginning of the occupation regime of about 100,000 died.

In short, the entire first period of the occupation of European countries marked by the tool and the collaboration with Nazism. All this was the result of a catastrophic perception of the peoples of these countries, military defeat, and then dominant idea of the superiority of German invincibility in Europe. Collaboration with the Nazis in occupied Europe has gone so far that it is worth quoting the words Obergruppenfuhrer Berger, who led the department for military recruitment. Here are his words: "Runes of victory (SS) may be worn only people who are able to serve in the SS and were born in Germany or other German countries, and all other units of the SS composed of other nations, are on the collar their national insignia. It would be absurd to impose on foreigners SS runes, as it would be emphasized that we are talking about mercenaries. If they are wearing national insignia, it underscores the fact that they are fighting for their liberty and for their country. " Probably something like this and reasoned Latvian and Estonian SS Legion, burning Belarusian villages in the Vitebsk region, believing that this is done in the name of the higher interests of the state of Latvia and Estonia.

Of the two thousand of the Warsaw ghetto, the Germans themselves were only 120 people, and that they are directly in the executions did not participate. The role of the executioners took upon their shoulders the Lithuanians — 900, Ukrainians — 300 Poles — 200, and further decreasing the Hungarians, Croats, Slovaks, and so on. And if the Germans approach to the Jews was functional and mechanical, that is — without orders not to shoot, the Lithuanian executioners from the punishment of the Jewish victims of the constrained only fear disciplinary action by the superior German leadership. Many serious researchers, including Israel, believe that the destruction of six million European Jews took part in only 15% of Germans, 85% of the rest of the executioners fall on other peoples of Europe, most of them were Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians and Croatians.

The exception is in the general chorus of indiscriminate fawning before Hitler was only Yugoslavia, or rather the part where they lived Orthodox Serbs and Montenegrins. Everyone knows that the exception only emphasizes the rule. And indeed the guerrilla war in the Balkans had its own peculiarities. On the part of Yugoslav territory was created an independent Croatian state, allied Nazi Germany. Ever since the creation of the Croatian state, driven by a thirst for revenge for past wrongs, the polls were to destroy the Orthodox Serbs and, incidentally, Roma and Jews. The atrocities committed by Croats against the Serbs have outraged even the German command. German generals rightly feared that the Allies would only facilitate the deployment of the partisan movement in the Balkans. And so it happened.

The first took up arms in the former officers of the Royal Yugoslav Army, under the command of an Orthodox priest Momcilo Dzhuicha who held monarchist and anti-communist, but the objects of their attacks are not Germans and Croats. The most interesting thing in this story is that the original arms and provisions guerrilla group Dzhuicha supplied the Italian officers of the occupying Italian army. It was only after the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in the summer of 1941 and began to organize the Communist underground under the leadership of Tito. The strength of this movement gradually grew, it became a major in the Resistance. But the truly powerful it was only two years later, after the capitulation of Italy in September 1943 and the Tehran Conference (28.11.43 — 01.12.43). Only after these events, the UK became Tito's partisans to supply equipment and weapons, and the British official delegation was parachuted into the mountain residence of Tito.

So, as we can see, all the theater of the Second World War, with a few exceptions, Europe was just a spectator, watching the performance of the actors from the audience. The principle observation was this: who will win, and he will receive the applause and the audience's sympathy.

As an epilogue of our story will excerpt from the poem of the evil Soviet poet Boris Likhareva. The poem was written in 1942, when Europe will be like a player at the races, sat — wondered on which horse to deliver.

"Die Yet!

Prosvischet bullet, and less alone!

Find out what it means to Russian anger.

We are not Paris, not Denmark,

And, all fear of whitewashed

You're going to howl, Germany! "


Alexander Alexandrov

See also: Fighting the French with the German occupiers at first glance as if invisible. The second and third also not visible

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