Snyder's Falsehoods about the Home Army

Snyder states:

Like the Polish government, by now in exile in London, the Home Army was to represent all political and social forces in the country. It was to fight for the restoration of Poland within its prewar boundaries, as a democratic republic with equal rights for all citizens. (281)

The reference for this statement, footnote 6, reads as follows:

6 On fighting for the restoration of Poland as a democratic republic, see Libionka, "ZWZ-AK," 19, 23, 34. (495)

But the passages in Dariusz Libionka's article "ZWZ-AK" contradict Snyder's statement. On page 19 Libionka quotes "several vague but significant declarations" by General Sikorski "dictated by the need to clearly distance itself from the pre-war Polish policy towards national minorities, which had terrible connotations in Western Europe." (1) But Libionka goes on to say that "{t}hese pronouncements were met with violent resistance from agents in the country" that spoke out strongly about "Jewish treason in the Kresy", a "deepening anti-Semitism of Polish society", "criticism of the government's position on national minorities", and so on. The rest of Libionka's paragraph details the strong anti-Semitism of forces in occupied Poland and their opposition to Sikorski's statements.

On page 23 Libionka notes that a member of the Polish exile government issued a declaration about the government's position that after the war the Jewish minority was to be granted equal rights. But again it did not speak for the forces in occupied Poland which were more concerned with "resolving the Jewish question" through emigration.

On page 34 Libionka quotes statements by Sikorski of January 1 and February 24, 1942 concerning the government's determination to grant equal rights to national minorities, including Jews. But Libionka shows that these general statements by London government officials were contradicted in the pro-London Polish press. One publication ("Rzeczpospolita Polska", = "Polish Republic") interpreted the January statement as supporting:

...{t}he settlement of the Jewish question in a manner consistent with Christian traditions of Polish politics, but at the same time so that it ceased to be a factor that makes of us a crippled nation, severely suffering due to the fact that the disparity in many areas of our economic and cultural life rests in the hands of strangers {that is, of Jews}.

Another pro-government periodical wrote:

In Poland the current war, more strongly than any other period in our history, has demonstrated the alien nature of the Jewish masses for the political and historical aspirations of the Polish nation.

The Polish government-in-exile adhered to the racist policy of its predecessor regimes by refusing to call all citizens of Poland "Poles." It did issue some general statements promising equal rights for all "inhabitants" of Poland. Perhaps it felt obliged to make such statements in order to placate the Allies.

Polish Government-in-Exile Plan for Postwar Fascism

Meanwhile the Delegatura, the Polish government inside occupied Poland, was preparing for a very different post-war policy. The documents below were quoted by a few scholars during the 1970s and 1980s, while the pro-Soviet socialist government was still in power. Since then they have been ignored.

W instrukcji bezpięczeństwa wydanej przez Departament Spraw Wewnętrznych Delegatury przewidywano, iż bezpośrednio po uchwyceniu władzy przez obóz londyński nastąpi, jak określano - "ograniczenie swobód obywatelskich", które postawi poza prawem opozycję. Przygotowany w tym celu projekt Ustawy antykomunistycznej przewidyał uznanie za zbrodnię, karaną śmiercią lub więzieniem nie niższym niż 10 lat, przynależności do organizacji komunistycznych, propagandy komunizmu itp. Za zbrodnie zostały uznane także "(...) wywoływanie strajków, propaganda przeciwko prawu własności, przeciwko rodzinie, religii, armii, urzędom.


The Security Instructions issued by the Department of Internal Affairs of the Delegatura provided that immediately after the capture of power by the London-based camp will take place, as it is described - "a restriction of civil liberties," which puts the opposition outside the law. The draft of the Anticommunism Act prepared for this purpose provided for recognition as a crime punishable by death or imprisonment of not less than 10 years, membership in Communist organizations, propaganda for communism, etc. Also considered as crimes were "(...) calling strikes, propaganda against the law of property, against family, religion, the military, the authorities {urzędom}." (2)

A somewhat fuller citation from the same archival document is found in another book:

W opracowanej przez "Antyk" "ustawe antykomunistycznej" zawarto art. 14, którego § 1 brzmiał: "Kto w zamiarze obalenia Państwa i zburzenia ładu społecznego organizuje związek lub stoi na czele związku mającego za cel propaganda komunizmu lub anarchizmu, w szczególności przez wywoływanie strajków, propagandę przeciwko prawa własności, przeciwko rodzinie, religii, armii, urzędom podłega karze śmierci lub więzienia do lat 10, lub dozywotnio." (3)


In the "Anticommunist Law" developed by "Antyk" is article 14, § 1, which stated: "Whoever with intent to overthrow the state and the destruction of social order organizes an association or is the head of an association having as a goal the propaganda of communism or anarchism, in particular by calling strikes, by propaganda against property rights, against the family, religion, the military, the government authorities, is punishable by death or imprisonment up to 10 years, or for life."

These documents show that the London government was planning for a polity that was essentially fascist: a conservative, anti-communist and anti-labor regime similar to the prewar Polish regimes. Homicidal anti-Semitism is not mentioned here but was carried out during and after the war by the anticommunist Polish underground.

Therefore, contrary to Snyder's claim, in reality the London Polish Government in exile and its arm the Home Army never aspired to "represent all political and social forces." It did not recruit among Jews and firmly rejected communists. It fought against Jewish and communist partisan units. Moreover, both during and after the war the Polish underground murdered Jews and communists.

The prewar Polish government had vigorously opposed "equal rights for all citizens" and discriminated against all who were not ethnic Poles. It was explicitly anti-Semitic and strongly anticommunist. There is no reason or evidence to suggest that the London Polish government would not be the same, or similar.

Further evidence of the London Poles' lack of interest in democracy: they, and their arm the Home Army, insisted on a Poland "within its prewar boundaries," including Western Belorussia and Western Ukraine. The prewar Polish government had never held plebiscites to ask the Belorussian and Ukrainian majorities whether they "chose" to be in Poland. On the contrary: the Polish governments had discriminated against them and sent "settlers" to "Polonize" these areas.

None of the Allied powers supported the restoration of Western Ukraine or Western Belorussia to Poland. Poland never had any legitimate claim to these lands in the first place. Even today's Polish state, the successor to the London Polish government, no longer claims that these lands ought to be returned to Poland.

Snyder Tries to Excuse Home Army Anti-Semitism

In Poland, the Home Army (A.K. - Armia Krajowa), the general Polish Partisan Movement, was not open to Jews. Moreover, thousands of Jews were murdered by the rightist factions of the official Polish underground. In eastern Poland, in Byelorussia, and sometimes in other areas as well, groups of Polish rightist guerillas took an active role in the killing of many Jewish families and partisans in the forest. Among their victims was also a group of Jewish fighters who had succeeded in breaking out of the Warsaw Ghetto at the time of the uprising, had reached the forests, and launched guerilla warfare against the Nazis. - Yitzhak Arad, introduction to Isaac Kowalski, comp. and ed., Anthology on Armed Jewish Resistance, 1939-1945 (Brooklyn, New York: Jewish Combatants Publishers House, 1984-1991), vol. 1 (1984), 27. Arad was a partisan fighter who fought in a pro-Soviet partisan group. He later headed Yad Vashem, the Holocaust research center and memorial in Israel.

Snyder writes:

Warsaw Home Army commanders had strategic concerns that militated against giving the Jews any weapons at all. Although the Home Army was moving in the direction of partisan action, it feared that a rebellion in the ghetto would provoke a general uprising in the city, which the Germans would crush. The Home Army was not ready for such a fight in late 1942. (284)

There are a number of falsehoods and evasions here. Snyder has just finished assuring his readers that "the Home Army was to represent all political and social forces in the country." But the Jews were Polish citizens. Therefore, Snyder is tacitly admitting that the Home Army was refusing to represent its own citizens. It refused because of its racist and anti-Semitic definition of national identity.

In this respect it was the prewar Polish government, the London Poles, and the Home Army who resembled the Nazis. The Soviets and Polish communists did not. The prewar Polish government and its underground partisan arm the Home Army privileged Roman Catholic Poles who were born of Polish-speaking parents above all other citizens of Poland, whether Jewish (not Roman Catholic), Ukrainian, Belorussian, Czech, German, etc.

The Polish government's racist idea of the Polish nation was similar to the Nazis' idea of the German "Volk" (people). It remains so to the present day. The President of Poland's "Instytut Pamięci Narodowej" (Institute of National Memory) swears "to serve faithfully the Polish nation." Leon Kieres, founding president of the IPN, still refers to "fellow citizens of Jewish nationality" (4) - that is he does not consider Jews a part of the "Polish nation."

Roman Dmowski, a prewar politician and political theorist who promoted the idea that only Roman Catholics can be true Poles and who was an outspoken anti-Semite, is honored by the governments of today's capitalist Poland. Dmowski was a Polish fascist - a "Hitlerite," as the editor of the Polish edition of Le Monde Diplomatique has called him. (5) Dmowski was a virulent Polish imperialist who advocated harsh treatment of national minorities. Yet in January 1999 the Polish Sejm (Parliament) passed a resolution honoring Dmowski as an "outstanding Pole." (6)


Home Army commanders saw a premature uprising as a communist temptation to be avoided. They knew that the Soviets, and thus the Polish communists, were urging the local population to take up arms immediately against the Germans. The Soviets wanted to provoke partisan warfare in Poland in order to weaken the Germans - but also to hinder any future Polish resistance to their own rule when it came. The Red Army's task would be easier if German troops were killed by partisan warfare, as would the NKVD's if Polish elites were killed for resisting Germans. (284)

This is a particularly odious lie. Snyder suggests that the Soviets encouraged resistance to the Germans because they "wanted" German troops to kill "Polish elites." But he cites no evidence to support this statement - because there isn't any.

Slurs like this are indicative. Snyder evidently wants to find any and all "dirt" he can on Stalin, Soviet policies in Poland, and Polish communists. If he could find any genuine crimes by these parties against Poles or Poland he would certainly include them. Assertions of "crimes" that are unsupported by evidence, or - as here - assertions that the Soviets had "bad intentions" (as though Snyder can read minds) expose his failure. Despite his best efforts, Snyder is unable to document any Soviet or Polish communist "crimes." But this is an unacceptable result: it is essential to claim that such crimes occurred if one is to curry favor with Polish nationalists. Apparently this is the motive behind Snyder's undocumented insults such as this one.

The Jewish Combat Organization included the communists, who were following the Soviet line, and believed that Poland should be subordinated to the Soviet Union. (284)

So what? If, as Snyder claimed on page 281 (see above),

Like the Polish government, by now in exile in London, the Home Army was to represent all political and social forces in the country.

Then it should have tried to "represent" both Jews and communists too.

But Snyder does not even cite any evidence that the communists "believed that Poland should be subordinated to the Soviet Union." Moreover, the London Polish government was "subordinate to" first France, then to the U.K. and the Western Allies, without whose support at every step it simply would have ceased to exist.

Snyder's statement is also an evasion - as though "independence," not anticommunism and support for capitalism, was what kept the London Polish government and the Home Army from including communists. A communist Poland would certainly have friendly relations with the USSR. But Snyder cites no evidence that Polish communists "believed" in "subordination" to the Soviet Union.

The London Polish regime, like the Western Allies, wanted a capitalist and anticommunist Poland, which would necessarily mean an anti-Soviet Poland. As for the Soviet Union, it required friendly countries on its borders, as did all of the Western Allies. The USA would never tolerate a hostile Mexico, for example, and has invaded Mexico every time that country threatened to become hostile.

As the Home Army command could not forget, the Second World War had begun when both the Germans and the Soviets had invaded Poland. Half of Poland had spent half of the war inside the Soviet Union. The Soviets wanted eastern Poland back, and perhaps even more. (284)

Snyder's talk about "eastern Poland," meaning Western Ukraine and Western Belorussia, is dishonest. Both territories had been seized from Soviet Russia by Poland through conquest; Polish speakers were in a minority in both. There was no reason they should have been taken back by the USSR at the first opportunity. Snyder avoids the whole issue of the Curzon Line and Polish imperialism. He does not wish his audience to remember that none of Poland West of the Curzon Line, the line that divided majority Polish territory from majority Ukrainian or Belorussian lands, had been occupied by the Soviets, and none would ever be.

To say "the Soviets wanted eastern Poland back" is not objective. One could just as accurately say "Poland wanted Western Belorussia and Western Ukraine back." Then the question would be obvious: "Why should Poland have them? Why should Poland ever have had them?"

From the perspective of the Home Army, rule by the Soviets was little better than rule by the Nazis. Its goal was independence. There were hardly any circumstances that would seem to justify a Polish independence organization arming communists inside Poland. (284)

Snyder's statement here is a devastating criticism of the Home Army - though Snyder, evidently, does not understand this. The Nazis considered the Poles to be "Untermenschen" (subhumans) and targeted Poles for extermination - mass murder. The Soviets had no such racist concepts or genocidal goals. The Soviets did not commit mass murder against Poles or anybody else. Their desire was to build a socialist state that would benefit the working people rather than the traditional elites and that would be friendly to the USSR, unlike the prewar Polish regime which was as hostile as can be imagined.

The Soviets helped in rebuilding a socialist Polish state after the war. The Polish communists organized the reconstruction and carried it out. Would the Nazis have rebuilt a Polish state? The question answers itself.

If the Home Army really did consider "rule by the Soviets" "little better than rule by the Nazis," that means they cared nothing for the fate of the majority of Poles as long as the status of the Polish elite was maintained. This might well be true.

If the Home Army and London Polish government really did strive to "represent all Poles," as Snyder has claimed, then they should have armed communists and Jews just as they armed other Poles. But the London Polish government in exile and the Home Army were anticommunist and anti-Semitic - just as the Nazis were.

In reality, of course, the Home Army did not merely want "independence." The Home Army and the Polish government in exile were fighting for capitalism and against communism. They were fighting for Polish imperialism too - to regain Western Ukraine and Western Belorussia, which they regarded as "theirs" despite the fact that Poles had never been the majority of the population.

After World War Two "imperialism" becomes a dirty word to most of the world's peoples. Therefore the imperialist countries, Poland included, stop describing their imperialist aims as such and being describing them as "fighting communism," "fighting for freedom," and so on.

Dairusz Libionka's Account of Warsaw Ghetto Revolt Contradicts Snyder's

The note to the five passages from page 284 reproduced above reads:

n. 13 (p. 496): Libionka, "ZWZ-AK," 60, 71.

Dariusz Libionka is widely regarded as one of the foremost experts on the subject of Jews in Poland during the war. It is not surprising that Snyder cites him as a source - except for one thing: Libionka's article does not really support what Snyder says. Libionka details the Home Army's almost total indifference to the Jewish fighting groups. Libionka's discussion on these pages documents the lack of interest of the Home Army in Jewish issues and Jewish rebels generally.

In the Appendix to this chapter we have quoted at length, with translations, some of the passages from these two pages of Libionka's so readers may judge for themselves. Some especially striking passages have been boldfaced for the reader's convenience. But all the passages are worth studying, as is the entire article for those who can read Polish.

Snyder then claims that subsequently the Home Army did give much of its own cache of weapons to the Jewish rebels:

This worked powerfully against the anti-Semitic stereotype, present in the Home Army and in Polish society, that Jews would not fight. Now the Warsaw command of the Home Army gave the Jewish Combat Organization a substantial proportion of its own modest arms cache: guns, ammunition, explosives. (286)

Sources (n. 17 p. 496):

* "On the arms cache, see Libionka, "ZWZ-AK," 69";

* "...and Moczarski, Rozmowy, 232."

* "On the anti-Semitic minority, see Engelking, Żydzi, 193, and passim."

Kazimierz Moczarski, Rozmowy z katem, is a book about the author's imprisonment with Jürgen Stroop, the German and fanatical Nazi who commanded the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto and murder of thousands of its Jewish citizens.

There is nothing on page 69 of Libionka's long article, cited here by Snyder, about the Polish government or Home Army giving any arms to the Jews. In the Appendix to this chapter we also quote much of Libionka's page 70, where discussion of the arms question is continued. These passages make clear that Libionka does not believe that the Home Army sent the Jewish forces any significant arms.

Yet this is the very source Snyder cites! Why? We suspect that very few of Snyder's readers will bother to obtain Libionka's article, written in Polish in a journal that is not easy to find and check to see whether Libionka's research does in fact support what Snyder says. Meanwhile, Snyder can appear as though he is citing one of the most respected authorities on the subject in favor of his conclusions.

Engelking, Żydzi 193 recounts an aborted attempt by a Home Army man to shoot unarmed Jews found hiding in a cellar simply because they were Jews. There are indeed many examples of Home Army men murdering Jews.

Snyder Claims the Home Army Aided the Warsaw Ghetto Rebels

Among the Western Allies, only Polish authorities took direct action to halt the killing of Jews. By spring 1943 Żegota (7) was assisting about four thousands Jews in hiding. The Home Army announced that it would shoot Poles who blackmailed Jews. On 4 May, as the Jews of the Warsaw ghetto fought on, Prime Minister Władysław Sikorski issued an appeal: "I call on my countrymen to give all help and shelter to those being murdered, and at the same time, before all humanity, which has for too long been silent, I condemn these crimes." As Jews and Poles alike understood, the Warsaw command of the Home Army could not have saved the ghetto, even if it had devoted all of its troops and weapons to that purpose. It had, at that point, almost no combat experience itself. Nevertheless, seven of the first eight armed operations carried out by the Home Army in Warsaw were in support of the ghetto fighters. Two Poles died at the very beginning of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, trying to breach the ghetto walls. Several further attempts to breach the walls of the ghetto failed. All in all, the Home Army made some eleven attempts to help the Jews. (291)

Source (n. 29 p. 496):

* "Quotation: Engelking, Warsaw Ghetto, 795."

* "On the eleven attempts to help the Jews, see Engelking, Getto warsawskie, 745;

* "... and Libionka, "ZWZ-AK," 79.

None of Snyder's sources identify any Home Army announcement about "shooting Poles who blackmailed Jews." The reference in Engelking (8) to the "eleven attempts" is as follows:

According to Strzembosz, acts of armed assistance to the ghetto, which included about eleven documented stories, "were usually restricted to attacking individual posts or gun emplacements." Did {they} constitute real help for the Jewish fighters who were defending themselves for four weeks?

Engelking clearly believes this Home Army "support" was symbolic only.

The passages from Libionka's essay quoted in the Appendix show that the Home Army was indeed "reluctant" to arm the ghetto fighters and in fact provided very few arms. More evidence of this reluctance is seen in the quotations from pages 79-80 of Libionka's work that are reproduced in the Appendix to this chapter. Libionka, Snyder's source, say that Home Army actions to help the Warsaw Ghetto revolt were very weak. Libionka also states communist groups did take part in helping the Revolt, though he does not specify precisely what they did.

Joshua D. Zimmerman, a source that Snyder cites, but not here, is equally negative about the Home Army's attitude towards helping the Warsaw Ghetto rebels.

Rather it was "not possible," Komorowski wrote, to extend "extensive aid" to Jews for the following reasons:

1. The population treats Jews as a foreign element and in many cases as being inimical to Poland which was documented by their actions during the Soviet occupation...

2. Large numbers of armed Jews are brigands or members of communist groups which plague the nation. Jews who are members of these groups have displayed extreme cruelty to Poles.

3. Societal opinion as well as the rank and file of the underground would not be amenable to greater assistance to Jews as they would see this as a depletion of their own resources... (9)

Following the Polish nationalist position Snyder tries to depict Home Army support for the Warsaw Ghetto rebels in a positive light. But the evidence he himself cites reinforces the view that the Polish government in exile and Home Army were rife with anti-Semitism and wished to do as little as possible to help the Uprising. And, as we have seen before, the Polish government in exile and Home Army did not consider Polish Jews to be Poles.

As for the quotation of Engelking - it is on pages 794-5 - it is taken from the account by Iranek-Osmecki. Sikorski may well have said it. But it was hypocrisy, as forces loyal to the Polish government in exile in London continued to murder Jews in large numbers and with complete impunity. Iranek-Osmecki is an apologetic source, a command officer of the Home Army in occupied Poland and one of those responsible for starting the disastrous Warsaw Uprising in July 1944 without coordination with the Red Army.

Snyder Admits the Anti-Semitism of the Home Army:

Some Jews did survive the ghetto uprising, but found a hard welcome beyond the ghetto. In 1943 the Home Army was even more concerned about communism than it had been in 1942. As a result of an arrest and a place crash in summer 1943, a more sympathetic Polish commander and prime minister were replaced by less sympathetic ones. Despite its promises to do so, the Home Army never organized a Jewish unit from veterans of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Over the course of 1943, units of the Home Army sometimes shot armed Jews in the countryside as bandits. In a few cases, Home Army soldiers killed Jews in order to steal their property.

Here, Snyder begins, correctly, to relate the Home Army's anti-Semitism to its anticommunism. Polish nationalists, like other right-wing nationalists in the Baltics, Ukraine, Hungary, Rumania, and elsewhere, had a concept of "Jew-communism" (żydokomuna) virtually identical to that of the Nazis. (10)

Snyder greatly understates the extent of Home Army anti-Semitism. He does not use the term "anti-Semitism" with respect to the Home Army. Instead he suggests that Home Army discrimination against Jews was a reflection only of their anticommunism. In anticommunist historiography it is considered illegitimate to be anti-Semitic, but essential to be anticommunist. Later in this book we will present evidence of the truly shocking extent of anti-Semitism in the Polish underground forces including the Home Army.

Then, as though to mitigate these unpleasant truths, Snyder adds:

On the other hand, the Home Army did execute Poles who turned in Jews or tried to blackmail them. (292-3)

n. 33 - See Zimmerman, "Attitude," 120; and Libionka, "ZWZ-AK," 119-123.

This is not true. The very source Snyder cites, Dariusz Libionka's article, documents a number of incidents of Home Army murders of Jews and communists. But it does not document a single execution of a Pole because he murdered Jews or the punishment of any Poles because he had blackmailed Jews.

Concerning Home Army commander codenamed "Orzel" (= eagle) Libionka states that he was put on trial and shot, but Libionka states clearly that this was not only for his actions against the Jewish partisans:

W czerwcu 1944 r. "Orzeł" został rozstrzelany z wyroku Wojskowego Sądu Specjalnego, lecz powodem była nie tylko likwidacja oddziału ŻOB. ("ZWZ-AK", 121)


In June 1944, "Orzeł" was shot by a sentence of a Special Military Court, but not solely for the elimination of the Jewish Fighting Organization branch. (Emphasis added.)

Zimmerman, "Attitude," 120 does not support Snyder's statements in the least. Zimmerman documents Home Army commander Komorowski's relentlessly anti-Semitic attitude during the war, including towards Jewish partisans. Zimmerman points out that Komorowski claimed the Home Army had provided only "limited supplies" to the Jews as "a foreign element" (these were Polish citizens!), liable to be pro-communist, and the Home Army underground did not want to share their supplies.

Back to the Same Old Lie of Soviet "Invasion" and "Alliance with Hitler"

Although their British and American allies could afford to have illusions about Stalin, Polish officers and politicians could not. They had not forgotten that the Soviet Union had been an ally of Nazi Germany in 1939-1941, and that its occupation of eastern Poland had been ruthless and oppressive. (297)

Snyder repeats the same lie again. The Soviet Union was never an "ally of Nazi Germany." The British and Americans knew this very well - they had accepted the USSR's claim of neutrality in the German-Polish war of September 1939. It may have been the "position" of the Polish government-in-exile that the USSR had been an "ally" of Hitler's, but the rest of the world knew better.

Snyder Ignores Oppression by the Polish Government

Poland's own occupation of Western Ukraine and Western Belorussia had been both "ruthless and oppressive" to Ukrainians, Belorussians, and Jews, who did not enjoy the same civil liberties and rights as did Poles. Poland also oppressed communists, who likewise did not have civil rights in Poland.

In a response to one of Snyder's articles Jeffrey Burds outlines something Snyder left out: Polish government terror against Ukrainians in pre-war Western Ukraine.

Alexander Motyl has described the roots of Ukrainian violent opposition to Polish rule. {3} But the brutality of ethnic Poles towards ethnic Ukrainians is rarely discussed outside of tendentious nationalist accounts. The most widespread and intense violence took place in the anti-Ukrainian pogroms of 1934-1938. For this, alas, we do not need to rely on Polish or Ukrainian accounts alone. Monsignor Dr. Philippe Cortesi, the Papal Nuncio in Warsaw, condemned the violence in a private letter to the Polish Minister of Internal Affairs regarding just one such event of 2-3 November 1938. Polish members of the 'En-De' ('National Democracy', a militant Polish patriotic-nationalist organization) attacked Ukrainian students in their dormitories in Warsaw, unhindered by Polish police who stood by watching the brutal violence, and who waited until the end of the riots to arrest Ukrainian students for disturbing the peace. Several Ukrainian institutes were attacked, with the subsequent "destruction of everything that falls into the hands of the aggressors." A Ukrainian shop was destroyed when Polish "nationalist fanatics" set fire to the interior and then hurled a screaming young Ukrainian woman into the flames. The worst violence occurred at the Ukrainian Catholic seminary, located a mere 200 meters from the central office of the Polish state police. In the Polish crowd's iconoclastic rage, irreparable damage was done to the interior of the Ukrainian church, where icons were defiled and a priceless portrait of St. Peter destroyed. The seminary was ravaged as the angry Polish crowd systematically broke apart furniture and hurled the pieces through broken windows to the streets below. In all, at least eight Ukrainians were hospitalized with serious injuries, and two were killed. Consistent with its usual policy, the official Polish press remained mysteriously silent about such incidents. And wherever possible, the Polish police confiscated and suppressed Ukrainian underground newspapers and publications where the incidents were discussed.(11)

Evidently it is inconsistent with Snyder's aim - which is to portray Polish nationalists as "victims" and yoke the Soviets with the Nazis - to honestly point out the truth: It was the Polish nationalists who had a great deal in common with the Nazis, who were similarly racist German nationalists. The Soviet state was proudly internationalist and favored ordinary working people over "elites."

There was no "Eastern Poland" to occupy. Poland had ceased to exist. This happened entirely because of the Polish government. They had rejected collective security and then abandoned their country, leaving it without a government.

The Soviet Union never had any intention of supporting any institution that claimed to represent an independent Poland. (299)

Here Snyder tacitly assumes that only a capitalist Poland, no matter how anticommunist, racist, anti-working class and undemocratic, could be "independent," while a communist Poland could somehow not be "independent." This linguistic deception simply reveals his anticommunist bias.

The United States has never tolerated a country anywhere near its borders that was not "closely aligned" to it. Canada and Mexico are both "closely aligned" with the United States today yet they are regarded as "independent." Therefore this is less a question of independence than of who was going to hold state power in independent Poland after the war.

The Soviet leadership and the NKVD treated every Polish political organization (except the communists) as part of an anti-Soviet plot. (299)

n. 45 - "Operatsia "Seim," 5 and passim.

Snyder fails to tell his readers that "Operatsia 'Seim'" was aimed only against the Polish political parties - but only those in the Western Ukraine, Belorussia, and the Vil'no oblast'. These were the areas incorporated into the Soviet Union (in the case of the Vil'no oblast', into Lithuania) in 1939, and were part of the Soviet Union. The document on page 5 cited by Snyder specifies precisely this: a campaign to identify Polish nationalist organizations in these areas of the USSR and infiltrate "anti-Soviet formations". (14) The interested reader may find the document at page 5-14 of Operatsia "Seim" on the Internet. (12)

It would have been more accurate to say that the London Polish government and the Home Army treated every Jewish and communist-oriented political organization as part of a plot against them! In fact the Polish Socialist party and other such parties were courted by the communists during and after the war.

Indeed, in some cases Soviet partisans were turned against the Polish fighters. The partisan unit of Tuvia Bielski, for example, took part in the disarming of the Home Army. (299)

Snyder is being dishonest here by implying there was something wrong in disarming the Home Army. In fact it was the London Polish government itself that ordered the Home Army to disband and give its arms to the Red Army. Moreover, the Home Army was intensely hostile to the Red Army.

The Home Army was highly anticommunist and anti-Semitic and often murdered Jews and communists. The prewar Polish government had not even considered communists and Jews to be Poles. The sources that Snyder himself uses - Chiari and Libionka - document this. In contract to the murderous anti-Semitism of the Home Army the Soviet partisan leaders combatted anti-Semitism. Siding with them was the only sensible thing for Jewish partisans to do.

Snyder knows, but conceals from his readers, that the Home Army conspired with the German army against Soviet partisans and against the Red Army. German historian Bernhard Chiari has written about this in a volume on the "Myth of the Home Army" in which Snyder himself also has an article. (13)

The Warsaw Uprising: What Really Happened

On July 31, 1944 General Komorowski, commander of the Home Army loyal to the Polish Government in Exile (GIE) in England, gave the order for an uprising in Warsaw against the German occupying forces. The Warsaw Uprising of August 1 to October 2 1944 was a disastrous defeat for the hugely outgunned and, in the end, outnumbered partisan forces in the city. At least 17,000 insurgents were killed, while the Germans and their allied forces killed about 200,000 civilian residents of Warsaw and destroyed 60% of the buildings in the city.

The uprising was directly militarily against the Germans, but politically against the Soviet Union and especially the Polish forces allied with the Red Army: the Polish Army (Wojsko Polskie) and the People's Army (Armia Ludowa). The Uprising was a part of the Polish GIE's "Operation Storm" (Burza). This plan was designed to try to seize power in Polish towns once the Red Army crossed into Western Belorussia and Western Ukraine. Poland had seized these regions by conquest from Soviet Russia in 1921 and they had been retaken in 1939 after Poland's defeat and merged into the Belorussian and Ukrainian Republics of the USSR. The Polish GIE continued to insist that these lands were part of Poland until the early 1990s.

Operation Storm was designed to present to the Soviet government with the necessity of either recognizing the Polish GIE or of having to arrest its authorized representatives, thus admitting that it was a conqueror, not a liberator. The plan was for Home Army forces in the towns to wait until the Red Army was on the point of liberating a town from the Germans. In the interval between the German troops' withdrawal and the arrival of the Red Army the Home Army was to occupy the government buildings. When the Red Army arrived the Home Army was to greet them as the lawful government and representatives of the GIE. When the Red Army removed them from office and replaced them with their own Polish forces the Home Army was to inform the GIE which would then make a formal protest to the Allies. The Allies would then, supposedly, make a protest to the Soviet government.

Operation Storm did not work as planned in those cities where the Home Army did manage to time its exit from the underground precisely enough to seize the government buildings without too much fighting against superior German forces and before the Red Army arrived. In these cases the Allies showed no interest in disturbing their relations with the Red Army, which was taking huge casualties and bearing by far the brunt of the war against the fascists. In the case of Warsaw, the Normandy landing had occurred on June 6, 1944 and the Western Allies faced hard fighting.

General Komorowski, Home Army commander in Warsaw, was authorized by the GIE to declare an uprising at a time of his choice. The plan was still to wait until the Soviet forces were on the point of entering Warsaw and the German forces on the point of leaving it, and then seize power. Taking power in Warsaw would be of symbolic importance as it was the capital of Poland.

On July 31 Komorowski and his staff were mistakenly informed that Soviet tanks were on the point of crossing the Vistula and entering Warsaw. Komorowski gave the order for the uprising to begin at 5 p.m. on August 1. On the same day Col. Iranek-Osmecki, head of intelligence, told the staff that this information was false and suggested the uprising be called off. Komorowski refused. This decision ignited the chain of events that ended in the defeat of the Uprising and the destruction of Warsaw, called by many Poles at the time a "crime" and a "disaster."

No one ever thought that the Home Army and other partisan forces in Warsaw would be able to defeat the German and allied forces there. These included, at various times, part or all of five tank divisions, one of them an SS division, the German 9th Army, a company of the 29th SS grenadier division, the "Sonderkommando" Dirlewanger, infamous for its savagery against civilians, and a number of Cossack and other forces recruited from anti-communists within the USSR. These forces were supported by Stucka dive bombers and Messerschmitt fighters.

The only chance for success for the Uprising was to count on the Red Army's defeating the German forces and driving them out of the city. Then, with a minimum of fighting against retreating troops, the Home Army hoped to take control of Warsaw and present the Red Army with a fait accompli.

Given the hostility to the USSR on the part of the GIE and its representatives in Poland, the Soviet government could not be blamed if it did indeed stand by and let the German forces slaughter the Home Army. This is in fact what some anticommunist Polish writers and politicians have alleged ever since. But others equally anticommunist, and virtually all who are not, plus the Soviet government, Red Army commanders, and even the anticommunist Russian government today, reject this charge. More important, there is no evidence at all that the Red Army acted in this way. Like its inception, the defeat of the Warsaw Uprising was purely the responsibility of the GIE and the Home Army leadership.

The Home Army leadership started the "blame game", pointing fingers at others, during the Uprising itself. At first they tried to blame the British. Subsequently they decided it was all the Soviets' fault - despite the fact that the Uprising was supposed to be directed against the Soviets in the first place. One person Komorowski never blamed was himself. But a great many other Poles, including anticommunists and his own Home Army members, blamed him and continue to do so.

During the first two weeks of the Uprising the British sent aircraft from Italy to try to drop supplies to the Home Army forces in Warsaw. At first Stalin refused to have anything to do with the Uprising, even preventing the British airplanes from landing at Soviet airports for refueling. Stalin's position was that the Uprising was a crime because it had been undertaken without coordination with the Red Army, which was the only way it could have been successful. Nevertheless, after pressure from the British Stalin started Soviet supply flights. British, American, and Soviet flights dropped many tons of supplies, though it appears that most either fell into German hands or were destroyed by being dropped from too high an altitude. In any case such drops were symbolic only. No amount of air drops could enable poorly-armed and largely civilian partisans to defeat heavily armed, trained, and utterly ruthless German forces.

Post-1990 anticommunist Polish governments and scholars vacillate on the question of blaming Stalin for not coming to rescue the Uprising. This is impossible to prove for lack of evidence, though some researchers continue to make the attempt. Komorowski and the GIE leaders are honored as heroes on the grounds that the Uprising was necessary because it was a "fight for independence" that had to be attempted whatever the cost. "Independent" in a deliberate obfuscation, a code word for "anticommunist", anticommunists generally holding that being pro-Soviet means lacking independence while being pro-British - indeed, wholly dependent upon the British - and pro-capitalist is the only way to "independence."

Snyder's Falsifications about the Warsaw Uprising

Snyder claims:

Almost certainly, more Jews fought in the Warsaw Uprising of August 1944 than in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of April 1943. (302)

Sources (n. 50 p. 497):

* Engelking, Żydzi, 91 for Zylberberg, and passim;

* National Armed Forces (14) at 62, 86, 143.

Engelking's book at pages 91-92 does quote from Michael Zylberberg's A Warsaw Diary, 1939-1945. But Zylberberg also makes it clear that these were Jews with Polish surnames. Zylberberg fought under his assumed name of Jan Zielinski (p. 92). Libionka records that in the communist-led "People's Army" (Armija Ludowa) Jews could fight under their Jewish names:

Warto zwrócić też uwagę na to, że Żydzi, którzy walczyli w strukturach AL nie musieli się już dłużej ukrywać, mogli się czuć bezpiecznie, powrócić do własnego nazwiska.(15)


It is also interesting to turn one's attention to the fact that Jews who fought in the structures of the AL did not have to hide anymore, could feel themselves safe, return to their own surnames.

Here's what Snyder wrote in a New York Review of Books review of June 24, 2009:

Indeed, it is quite possible that more people of Jewish origin took part in the Warsaw Uprising of 1944 than in the Ghetto Uprising of 1943.

Evidently Snyder has no evidence that "most of these Jews joined the Home Army" - but those who did felt that they had to hide the fact that they were Jews. As Libionka points out it was the communist-led People's Army, or Armia Ludowa, not the anticommunist Home Army, or Armia Krajowa, that accepted the Jewish fighting group into its ranks. Snyder obviously knows this but hides it from his readers.

Snyder Blames the Soviets for the Warsaw Uprising Disaster and Exonerates Those Really Responsible

Snyder states:

From the Soviet perspective, an uprising in Warsaw was desirable because it would kill Germans - and Poles who were willing to risk their lives for independence. The Germans would do the necessary work of destroying the remnants of the Polish intelligentsia and the soldiers of the Home Army, groups that overlapped. (306)

This is a shameful fabrication by Snyder. Stalin and Soviet generals said over and over again that the uprising, uncoordinated with the Red Army, was highly undesirable. Snyder has no evidence to the contrary.

As soon as the Home Army soldiers took up arms, Stalin called them adventurers and criminals. (306)

This too is a falsehood. Stalin did not call the "Home Army soldiers" any such thing, so of course Snyder does not cite any evidence for this assertion. Stalin did refer in similar terms to the leaders of the Uprising, the Polish commanders who had begun it.

Moreover, it was not only Stalin - General Wladyslaw Anders thought the Uprising was a "crime":

Generał Władysław Anders uważał powstanie warszawskie za kardynalny błąd z politycznego i wojskowego punktu widzenia, a z moralnego za zbrodnię, za którą odpowiedzialność ponosili jego zdaniem dowódca Armii Krajowej gen. Tadeusz Bór-Komorowski i jego sztab. (16)


General Wladyslaw Anders considered the Warsaw uprising as a cardinal mistake from a political and military point of view, and from the moral point of view a crime, for which, in his opinion, commander of the Army General Tadeusz Bor-Komorowski and his staff bore the responsibility.

This was widely known at the time as well, as recorded in the following source from 1948:

Znane jest powiedznie ANDERSA o powstańcach warszawskich "Niech giną, kiedy głupi." (17)


Anders' statement about the Warsaw rebels is well known: "Let them die, since they are stupid."

If Snyder's readers knew that General Anders and other anticommunist Poles thought the Warsaw Uprising was "criminal," Stalin's agreeing with him would not ring the anticommunist tone that Snyder desires. So he does not tell his readers.

Snyder does admit that:

Given German anti-partisan tactics, an uprising looked like suicide to many. The Germans had been killing Poles in massive reprisals throughout the war; if an uprising failed, reasoned some commanders in Warsaw, the entire civilian population would suffer. (300)

But Snyder vastly understates the matter. The Uprising was far worse than "suicide." Suicide means killing only oneself. The Uprising entailed the killing of several hundred thousand citizens of Warsaw and the destruction of much of the city. As Snyder admits, this was predictable in advance. Yet the Home Army leadership went ahead anyway! No wonder, then, that like Stalin, General Anders called it a crime against Poland. Anders was not alone in condemning the Warsaw Uprising as a crime. Jan M. Ciechanowski, an anticommunist and historian at both British and Polish universities and, at the age of 14 years, a fighter in the Uprising, has long condemned the Uprising. Here, at the end of the article where his views are briefly summarized, Ciechanowski's conclusion is given:

Ciechanowski zgaza się z oceną Władysława Andersa, który wybuch powstania określił jako "nieszczęście" i "zbrodnię." (18)


Ciechanowski agrees with the assessment of Anders, who described the uprising as a "disaster" and "crime."

In his own book Powstanie Warszawskie, which has had many editions in both English and Polish, Ciechanowski writes that this "criminal" act was undertaken because it was directed politically against the Soviets:

Within a few hours of learning of it Gen Anders informed his superiors in London that he considered it to be 'a misfortune'. Some days later he stated that he and his soldiers regarded the order for the rising as 'a serious crime'. In his considered opinion the capital was 'doomed to be annihilated' in spite of 'the heroism, unparalleled in history' of the insurgents. The General was certain that the insurrection had not a 'half-chance' of success. He saw it as 'a madness', a 'flagrant crime'.

On 13 August Mikolajczyk sent a telegram to Stalin imploring him, in the name of the future of Russo-Polish relations, to save Warsaw from destruction, by ordering the Red Army to enter the capital of Poland as its 'liberators' rather than as grave-diggers 'to bury the dead in a destroyed city'. Five days later the Polish Premier sent another telegram to Moscow, in which he said that the insurrection seemed premature and that the Soviet High Command could not be held responsible for it...(19)

Not only were the highest Polish authorities abroad fully aware, from the beginning of the insurrection, that it had been ill-timed, but in Warsaw itself, a number of high-ranking Home Army officers also regarded the insurrection as premature. Col Bokszczanin wrote in 1965 that he had always considered Bor-Komorowski's decision of 31 July 1944 'as unjustified and premature'. (263)

We can only conclude that the Underground leaders' decision to try to capture Warsaw was dictated more by a desire to forestall occupation of the city by the Russians than by a wish to render unqualified support to the Red Army, as the Soviet appeals requested.

The Warsaw rising was to be the means by which the pro-London Poles were to assume power, initially in the capital and then in the whole of newly-liberated Poland. The pro-London leaders intended to forestall, with their rising, the assumption of power by the Russian-supported Polish Communists... (266)

(Emphasis added, GF)

All these facts are openly discussed in Poland. Snyder's account foregrounds and whitewashes the right-wing nationalist perspective while ignoring all the others.

Snyder has several times condemned the Soviets and communist partisans for being the cause of German reprisals against civilians. This is dishonest of him since, if made at all this criticism should be levelled at all partisan activity, including that of the Home Army and the Western Allies.

All other German reprisals against all civilians for all partisan activities in all German-occupied countries would not exceed the number of Poles the Germans murdered as a reprisal for the Warsaw Uprising. Yet Snyder utters no word of blame!

Did the USSR Prosecute Poles Who Resisted Hitler?

Later on, when the Soviet Union gained control of Poland, resistance to Hitler would be prosecuted as a crime, on the logic that armed action not controlled by the communists undermined the communists, and that communism was the only legitimate regime for Poland. (306)

If they did so, it should be easy to find evidence of the fact. But Snyder gives no evidence, not even a citation, in support of his claim that the communists "prosecuted resistance to Hitler as a crime."

In mid-September, when it could make absolutely no difference to the outcome in Warsaw, he {Stalin} finally allowed American bombing runs and carried out a few of his own. (307)

It is absurd to suggest that any amount of supply drops could ever have "made any difference." The reason many Poles considered the Warsaw Uprising a "crime" is precisely because it could not possibly succeed and would obviously result in an unprecedented massacre of Polish civilians and the destruction of the city itself.

The dropping of supplies could never have been decisive. There was no way that the poorly-armed Polish rebels could stand against 20,000 German troops. The Soviets dropped a great many supplies - by some estimates, more than the British did. But both British and Soviet supplies fell mostly into German-occupied areas.

The crime was the Uprising itself. The Warsaw Uprising led to many thousands of rebels being killed. That is a huge number of casualties of brave people. But as many as 200,000 Polish civilians were also killed by the Germans, and most of the city destroyed. The overwhelming majority of these casualties could have been avoided if the Home Army had coordinated their uprising with the Red Army.

But that was precisely what the anticommunist Home Army refused to do. The whole purpose of the Warsaw Uprising was to seize power in the city after the Red Army had forced the Wehrmacht to begin abandoning it, and then present the Red Army with a "fait accompli" - the Home Army in charge of the city. This would, supposedly, have given the London Polish government leverage with which to demand that the Western Allies support their claim to be the legitimate government in Warsaw and, therefore, in Poland as a whole.

After the Germans, it is the Home Army leadership itself that must bear responsibility for the disaster of the Warsaw Uprising. Many Poles, including Polish commanders in the Home Army, thought the Uprising not only had no chance of success, but was a "crime." Stalin thought so too, and acted accordingly.

Snyder wants it "both ways." He agrees, with the majority of historians, that "the Red Army had been halted, by unexpectedly strong German resistance, just beyond Warsaw." (305) But Snyder cannot resist an attempt to blame the Soviets for the crime of the Uprising. So he says:

It made perfect Stalinist sense to encourage an uprising, and then not to assist one. Right to the last moment, Soviet propaganda had called for an uprising in Warsaw, promising Soviet assistance. The uprising came, but the help did not. (305)

This is false and absurd to boot. First, there is not evidence for Snyder's statement. Second, anyone who might heed such a call from the Soviets would certainly coordinate it with the Red Army's advance. Third, the last person on earth that Home Army commanders would have heeded was Stalin!

While the Red Army hesitated just east of the Vistula River from early August 1944 through January 1945, the Germans were killing the Jews to its west. During those five months, the Red Army was less than a hundred kilometers from Łódź. (310)

But Snyder himself has already stated that the Red Army did not "hesitate" but was "halted by unexpected strong German resistance!" (305) It was not this "halt" that "doomed the Polish fighters" - it was the refusal of the Home Army commanders to coordinate the uprising with the Red Army that doomed them, and 150,000 - 200,000 Polish civilians.

Had the Home Army coordinated its activity with the Red Army it could have put all its efforts into preventing the Germans from blowing up the bridges across the Vistula and greatly facilitated the Red Army's advance from the east bank into Warsaw. The Home Army commanders' refusal to work with the Red Army guaranteed the murder of 200,000 inhabitants of Warsaw, the destruction of most of the city, and the deaths of the Jews of Łódź!

It is particularly foul of Snyder to blame the Red Army for the deaths of Jews murdered by the Nazis when the Red Army liberated more Jews, and more concentration and death camps, than all the other Allied forces.

Did the NKVD Shoot Poles Just Like the Germans Had?

When Soviet soldiers finally crossed the Vistula and advanced into the ruins of Warsaw on 17 January 1945, they found very few buildings still standing. The site of Concentration Camp Warsaw, however, was still available. The Soviet NKVD took over its facilities, and used them for familiar purposes. Home Army soldiers were interrogated and shot there by the Soviets in 1945, as they had been by the Germans in 1944. (311)


n. 70 - Kopka, Warschau, 51, 116.

It is instructive to follow out the chain of evidence, which Snyder certainly did not bother to do. Snyder's source, Kopka, Konzentrationslager Warschau (2007), page 51, simply mentions the fact that the NKVD and UB (Urząd Bezpieczeństwa, Polish communist security force) occupied the site of the former KL (= Konzentrationslager) Warsaw. On page 116 Kopka states only this:

Zachowały się fragmentaryczne przekazy o egzekucjach w tym obozie, jak choćby ten: "W Warszawie na ul. Gęsiej odbywają się systematycznie likwidacje członków AK przez NKWD"


Fragmentary messages have been preserved about executions in the camp, such as this: "In Warsaw, on Gęsiej Street liquidations of AK members by the NKVD regularly take place."

The only evidence cited is a further reference. Note 2 in Kopka reads:

K. Żmuda-Wilczyńska, Prokurator żądał kary śmierci, "Na przedpolu Warsawy" 1995, z. 5, s. 17 (za: S. Kalbarczyk, Sowieckie..., s. 152-153).

A specific reference to the Kalbarczyk article is given in Kopka's preceding footnote:

S. Kalbarczyk, Sowieckie represje wobec polskiego podziemia niepodległościowego w Warszawie i okolicach na przełomie 1944 i 1945 roku, "Pamięć i Sprawiedliwość" 2002, nr 2 (2),..."

I have obtained this article. The relevant passage in it (pp. 152-3) reads as follows:

Inne placówki NKWD w Warsawie opisywane są w materiale źródłowym w sposób wysoce enigmatyczny. Z dostępnych źródeł wynika, źe od stycznia 1945 r. przy ul. Gęsiej funkcjonował obóz NKWD ("Gęsiówka"). W straszliwych warunkach przetrzymywano tu żołnierzy Armii Krajowej, a ponadto jeńców niemieckich i innych "przestępców". Są wzmianki o egzekucjach w tym obozie: "W Warszawic na ul. Gęsiej odbywają się systematycznie likwidacje członków AK przez NKWD."


Other NKVD facilities in Warsaw are described in the source material in a highly enigmatic manner. The available sources indicate that from January 1945, an NKVD camp functioned on Gęsia Street (the "Gęsiówka"). Soldiers of the Armia Krajowa as well as German prisoners of war and other "criminals" were held there in terrible conditions. There is mention of executions in this camp: "In Warsaw on Gęsia Street liquidations take place on a regular basis of members of the AK by the NKVD."

The reference at note 94 is to an archival document, "CAW, O VI SG NW, ll/52. 34, k. 16; ibidem, ll/52. 100, k. 4." But Kalbarczyk gives us no way to evaluate it: no source criticism is given about this document; no information about what it is, why it was produced and by whom, nothing.

To conclude: this is the only evidence that the NKVD was shooting Home Army soldiers in that prison - "mentions" - wzmianki - that are "highly enigmatic." No names are given of Home Army victims. Moreover, if Home Army men were shot and could be identified, the question of why they were shot would still remain: what the charges against them were, whether they were given any kind of trial. After all, the underground Home Army was at war with the communist forces, murdering Jews and communists long after the war had ended.

If a charge of "systematic executions" were made against the British, French, or Americans, a close examination of the evidence would certainly take place before any conclusions were drawn. As Kalbarczyk admits, the evidence is "highly enigmatic." This is a red flag, a warning to the reader: "We do not know whether the contents of this document are reliable!"

But Snyder does not bother with scholarly exactness, when the charges are against communists. For Snyder as for the Nazis communists are "unpersons," to be treated unequally; virtually any charge against communists is acceptable for him.


(1) "...kilku ogólnikowych, lecz znaczących deklaracji, podyktowanych potrzebą wyraźnego zdystansowania się od polskiej przedwojennej polityki wobec mniejszości narodowych, mającej fatalne konotacje w Europie Zachodniej."

(2) Ryszard Nazarwicz. Z problematyki potycznej Powstania Warszawskiego 1944. Warsaw: Wydawn. Ministerstwa Obrony Narodowej, 1985, p. 78. Nazarewicz, Drogi do wyzwolenia: koncepje walki z okupantem w Polsce i ich treści polityczne, 1939-1945. Warsaw: Książka i Wiedza, 1979, p. 379.

(3) Czesław Żerosławski. Katolicka myśl o ojczyżnie. Ideowopolityczne komcepcje klerzkalnego podyiemia 1939-1944. Warzawa: Państwo widawnicnwo naukowe, 1987, 264.

(4) Marci Shore, "Conversing with Ghosts: Jedwabne, Zydokomuna, and Totalitarianism." Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History, 6 (2), Spring 2005 (New Series), p. 362.

(5) Stefan Zgliczynski, Roman Dmowskib - hitlerowiec, December, 2010: http://monde-diplomatique.pl/LMD58/index.php?id=1_5

(6) "Uchwała Sejmu Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej z dnia 8 stycznia 1999 r o uczczeniu pamięci Romana Dmowskiego"(Resolution of the Polish Sejm of 8 January 1999 to commemorate Roman Dmowski): http://orka.sejm.gov.pl/proc3.nsf/uchwaly/783_u.htm

(7) Żegota was an organization set up by the Polish Government-in-Exile in London to rescue Jews from the Germans.

(8) Here I quote from the English edition of Engelking, p. 792, rather than from the much harder-to-find Polish edition. Oddly, Snyder also refers to the English edition in this same footnote!

(9) Joshua D. Zimmerman, "The Attitude of the Polish Home Army (AK) to the Jewish Question during the Holocaust: The Case of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising." In Varieties of Anti-Semitism. History, Ideology, Discourse. Eds. Murray Baumgarten, Peter Kenez, and Bruce Thompson. Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2009, 109-126; at 121.

(10) See the useful Polish-language Wikipedia page on this topic at http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Żydokomuna The English-language page has been extensively written up in a highly apologetic and anticommunist manner. (Accessed 06.19.2013)

(11) Jeffrey Burds, "Comment on Timothy Snyder's article...": http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~hpcws/comment13.htm

(12) http://msuweb.montclair.edu/~furrg/research/operatsia_seim05-14.pdf

(13) Bernard Chiari, "Kriegslist oder Bündnis mit dem Feind? Deutsch-Polnische Kontakte 1943-44." In Die Polnische Heimatarmee. Geschichte und Mythos der Armia Krajowa seit dem Zweiten Weltkrieg. Munich: R. Oldenbourg Vlg, 2003, 497-527. Snyder's article is on pp. 549-561.

(14) There is no entry in Snyder's bibliography for "National Armed Forces." Snyder cites it only twice, in notes 50 and 51, page 497. The NSZ was an especially racist and murderous group in the Polish underground. It is now officially honored in Poland; see Zgliczyński, Jak Polaci 10, n. 4.

(15) From the review by Kasia Przyborska in the Appendix to this chapter.

(16) Jan M. Ciechanowski. "Nie tylko głupota, ale zbrodnia" ("Not only stupidity, but a crime"). Przegląd Tygodnik 30 (2010). As we discuss below, this is Ciechanowski's own view as well: http://www.przeglad-tygodnik.pl/pl/artykul/nie-tylko-glupota-ale-zbrodnia

(17) Obóz reakcji Polskiej w latach 1939-1945. (Warszawa, Maj 1948 r.), 118.

(18) Prof. Jan Ciechanowski: Powstanie Warszawskie było klęską i błędem, Dzeije.pl 07.24.09: http://dzieje.pl/aktualnosci/prof-jan-ciechanowski-powstanie-warszawskie-bylo-kleska-bledem

(19) Jan M Ciechanowski, The Warsaw Rising of 1944. London: Cambridge University Press, 1974.