German President: WWII was a German crime

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier asked “forgiveness for Germany's historical guilt” during the commemorations of the outbreak of WWII in Warsaw on Sunday.

To watch the full speech of German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier click here.

“This war was a German crime,” said German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier about WWII, adding that “on this day 80 years ago my country – Germany – invaded its neighbouring country – Poland – your homeland. My fellow Germans unleashed a horrific war that would cost more than 50 million people, among them millions of Polish citizens, their lives.”

President Steinmeier said that “on the very first day of the war, Germans bombarded Warsaw. They rampaged in this city for years, they razed entire districts to the ground. They deported the residents. They murdered men, women and children, Poland, its culture, its cities and its people. All living things were to be annihilated.”

“It is true that we cannot measure this [WWII] suffering,” said Germany’s President, adding that “immeasurable does not mean that we are free from the effort of sharing the victims’ pain. The past is not over, on the contrary, the further back this war lies the more important remembrance becomes.”

“As the Federal President of the Federal Republic of Germany along with the Federal Chancellor, we want to tell all Poles today that we will not forget the wounds the Germans inflicted on the Polish people. We will not forget the suffering of the Polish families nor will we forget the courage of their resistance. We will never forget,” said President Steinmeier.

The German President said that “a united Europe is what saves us, it is the lesson of centuries of wars and devastations, enmity and hatred… United Europe is built on humanism, the enlightenment, freedom, justice and the wealth of its languages and cultures. This Europe is and will remain a project of hope.”