Poland is a blindspot in Western WWII historiography: Roger Moorhouse

The tragedy of September 1939 is often overlooked, as, in general, the Polish historiography is a blindspot in the Western WWII narrative, British historian Roger Moorhouse told Poland IN. His book “First to Fight: The Polish War 1939”, published in the UK last year, is the first account in English of the fall of Poland in nearly five decades.

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Mr Moorhouse recalled that even major productions, such as the BBC’s World At War, hardly mentions Poland in any other context than in the Nazi German invasion of 1939, omitting great persons such as general Stanisław Maczek and general Stanisław Sosabowski who fought alongside Western allies in Europe.

In his opinion, the reason for such a state of affairs could be that the Polish WWII historiography is “a part of a narrative of the war that does not fit with the wider Western narrative,” being stuck between this one and the German/Russian one, thus being overlooked.

Analysing the situation of Poland in the wake of the WWII outbreak, Mr Moorhouse pointed out that the Polish state was geopolitically damned, as it was situated between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union - both totalitarian and revisionist regimes, both shared animosity towards Poland. Furthermore, it has no natural defences as it was then located on the North European Plain.

Roger Moorhouse also touches on several other aspects of the September 1939 campaign, such as the course of the events, the role of Slovakia as a German ally, the attitude of Great Britain and France, the Soviet invasion, as well as facts and myths about the Polish military equipment.

Click here to watch the full interview.

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