Saturday, May 21, 2016

ADSS 1.176 von Bergen to Sec State: Hitler thanks Pope for his message

ADSS 1.176 German Ambassador (1) to the Holy See, to Secretariat of State.

Reference: AES 5988/39

Location and date: 01.09.1939

Summary statement: Hitler thanks the Pope for his message of 31.08 but Polish provocations have made peace impossible.

Language: German


The Führer thanks His Holiness for His message of yesterday’s date. (2) As His Holiness will have learnt from the messages received in the meantime, events have unfortunately rendered impossible the peaceful solution, which Germany had hoped for.  The Führer had waited two days for the arrival of a Polish emissary for the peaceful settlement of the German-Polish conflict.  As a reply to his efforts, Poland ordered general mobilisation.  Furthermore, the Poles had yesterday committed of still further unheard-of frontier violations which this time involved regular Polish troops entering German territory.  These unbearable provocations have caused the Führer to take steps that would also ensure that same peace and quiet at Germany’s Eastern frontier, which Germany requires and which obtains at her other frontiers. (3)

(1) Diego von Bergen (1872-1944), German Ambassador to the Holy See, 1920-43.
(2) ADSS 1.160

(3) This is a reference to the German organised attack on the Gleiwitz radio station during the previous night to provide a “justifiable” excuse to order the invasion of Poland. 

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