CHRONOLOGY OF EVENTS
1933 30 Jan _____ Hitler appointed Chancellor by President Hindenburg. 23 Mar _____ Enabling Act passed by Reichstag to establish the National Socialist dictatorship. 14 Oct _____ Germany withdraws from the League of Nations. 1934 26 Jan _____ Nonaggression pact concluded with Poland. 30 Jun _____ Roehm and other opponents of Hitler murdered in blood purge. 2 Aug _____ Death of President Hindenburg. Chancellorship and Presidency combined by Hitler. 19 Aug _____ National plebiscite approves Hitler's assumption of executive power. 1935 16 Mar _____ Hitler announces the expansion of the Army to 36 divisions and 300,000 men. Conscription reintroduced. 21 May _____ New armed forces law establishes a separate air force. 18 Jun _____ Anglo-German naval agreement permits the construction of a modern German fleet. 1 Jul _____ Truppenamt redesignated as the Army General Staff. 1936 7 Mar _____ German troops occupy demilitarized Rhineland. 27 Oct _____ Formation of the Rome-Berlin Axis. 17 Nov _____ Conclusion of the Japanese-German anti-Comintern agreement. 1937 30 Jan _____ Hitler reaffirms the Polish-German Nonaggression Pact. 12 Mar _____ German troops cross the frontier to annex Austria to the Reich. 1938 4 Feb _____ Resignation of Blomberg and Fritsch. Hitler creates OKW under Keitel and assumes closer control over the German Armed Forces, redesignated the Wehrmacht. 29 Sep _____ Munich Conference. Hitler's claim to the Sudetenland area of Czechoslovakia recognized by Britain, France, and Italy. Czechoslovakia accedes to German demands. 24 Oct _____ Ribbentrop demands the return of Danzig and special concessions in the Polish Corridor.
1939 20 Jan _____ Schacht dismissed as president of Reichsbank after warning Hitler of economic consequences of his armaments program. 15 Mar _____ Bohemia and Moravia occupied by German troops and organized as a protectorate of the Reich. 23 Mar _____ Memelland annexed to Germany. 25 Mar _____ Hitler directs service chiefs to make preparations for the solution of the Polish problem by military means. 31 Mar _____ Chamberlain ends policy of appeasement with guarantees to Poland pledging Anglo-French support should Polish independence be threatened. 3 Apr _____ "Directive for the Armed Forces, ,1939-40" issued by OKW. Part II entitled Plan WEISS and provides for a military build-up against Poland by 1 September. 21 Apr _____ Annex to Plan WEISS specifies that there will be no declaration of war if the problem of Poland is to be resolved by force. 28 Apr _____ Hitler abrogates Polish-German Nonaggression Pact of 1934 and the London Naval Agreement of 1935. 12 May _____ Disorders in Danzig instigated by National Socialists. 15 Jun _____ Operation order issued by OKH specifies the composition and mission of the ground forces to participate in Plan WEISS. 14 Jul _____ Timetable for military preparations against Poland issued by OKW to the three services. Preparations to be completed by Y-day, which is to be set by Hitler. 23 Aug _____ Germany signs pact of nonaggression with the Soviet Union. Hitler sets Y-day for 26 August. 24 Aug _____ Britain and France give written guarantees to Poland. 25 Aug _____ Hitler directs attack to commence at 0400, 26 August, but revokes order when he is informed of British and French guarantees. Mobilization proceeds according to "X" Plan, while Hitler tries to dissuade British and French. 28 Aug _____ British and French remain firm in their stand on Polish question. 29 Aug _____ German ultimatum to Poles. 30 Aug _____ Ribbentrop declares negotiations with Poland at an end. 31 Aug _____ Hitler signs "Directive No. 1 for the Conduct of the War," ordering attack on Poland at 0445, 1 September. "Gleiwitz Incident" staged as Polish provocation for armed German intervention. 1 Sep _____ Wehrmacht crosses Polish frontier and attacks Polish air bases and naval installations. 3 Sep _____ Army Group North cuts the Corridor and Army Group South crosses the Wartha. Britain and France declare war on Germany. 11 Sep _____ Major Polish force destroyed at Radom. 12 Sep _____ Headquarters, OKH shifts ground forces to permit envelopment of Poles escaping east of Vistula. 17 Sep _____ Red Army moves into eastern Poland. The German XIX Corps captures Brzesc. Major Polish force destroyed at Kutno.
19 Sep _____ Army Group South reports Polish President and Commander in Chief have fled to Romania. 21 Sep _____ Surrender of Lwow. 27 Sep _____ Surrender of Warsaw. 29 Sep _____ Surrender of Modlin. 2 Oct _____ Army Group North relinquishes control of its area to Third Army. Army Group North and Fourth Army leave Poland for the western front. 3 Oct _____ Army Group South becomes OB EAST and responsible for occupation of Poland. Three frontier army commands organized. Tenth Army enroute to western front. 4-6 Oct _____ Destruction of last major Polish force at Kock. 12 Oct _____ Hitler directs establishment of a government general in Poland. 13 Oct _____ Eighth and Fourteenth Armies move to western front. 18 Oct _____ Army Group South relieved from assignment as OB EAST and ordered to the western front. Frontier Army Command Center becomes OB EAST. 22 Oct _____ Headquarters, Frontier Army Command North (Third Army) moves to western front. Wehrkreis I assumes control of the area of responsibility of Frontier Army Command North. 26 Oct _____ Occupation of Poland turned over to civilian control. Dr. Frank becomes governor general and military occupation forces are restricted to security duties.
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