Free City of Danzig
passed upon the lawful situation of Danzig
by Dr. Frans du Buy
for and on behalf of the Danzig Committee
Free State of Danzig
Frankfurt a. M. (Germany) February 26, 1993
Latest update: March 25, 2006
MAP of the FREE STATE OF DANZIG
1. Introduction page 3
2. The decision of the allied and associated great powers
regarding Danzig was a violation of the rights of
self-determination page 5
3. The Danzig nationality page 7
4. The constitution of Danzig page 8
5. The convention between Poland and Danzig page 9
6. Danzig is proclaimed a FREE STATE page 10
7. Danzig as a protectorate of the League of Nations page 11
8. Danzig in the period between 1920 and 1939 page 13
9. Is the Free City of Danzig to be considered a
neutral State? page 16
10. The Free City of Danzig and the Second World War page 19
11. The destiny of Danzig since 1945 page 21
12. The reinstatement of Danzig as a Free City page 26
Relying on the so called "14 points program" of the American President
Wilson, proclaimed on January 08, 1918, and extended one month later in an address
before the American Congress by the postulates "no annexation, no war indemnity,
no general compensation", the military situation becoming hopeless by the
end of the year, the German Government was forced to apply for an armistice,
which came into force on November 11, 1918.
He conditions submitted by the allied and associated great powers were accepted unconditionally by the German Government, assuming that they would adhere to the "14 points program" of President Wilson.
Regarding the eastern borders of Germany, it was evident for the German Government
that it would be subjected to modifications. Both the Emperor of Austria and
the Emperor of Germany had proclaimed the reinstatement of Poland in 1916, though
the question of the future frontiers was left open.
The region of Posen, (Poznan) which to some extend became part of Prussia in 1772, and totally in 1773, and Galicia, becoming part of Austria in the same years as a result of the "Polish partitions' were not provided for cession to the future Polish kingdom in 1916.
On Polish initiative, a Polish republic was finally proclaimed on November 03, 1918, the national territory including Poland as it was, established by the Congress of Vienna in 1815, and also the western part of Galicia.
But many Polish politicians with national consciousness had a different conception of the future size of the young republic.
Regarding the German Polish frontier they could refer to point 13 of the above mentioned "14 point program" of the American president Wilson which says: "Foundation of an independent Polish State, granting free access to the sea, including those territories which were inhabited by an unquestionable Polish population."
Immediately the Poles proceeded to action! Regarding the expansion of Poland to the west, it was to be remembered that in November 1918 the Poles occupied the Prussian province of Posen, and occupied additionally the province of West Prussia, territorial acquisitions which had been granted to the Poles by the Versailles Treaty on June 29, 1919.
Furthermore, they wanted to get the CITY of DANZIG, which was an important German centre of commerce lying on the estuary of the River Vistula, and therefore dominating this river.
France, having been interested for centuries to keep Germany in a weak position, willingly supported and complied with this Polish wish and demand, and also supported any further Polish demands and claims that would be injurious to Germany, and therefore declared herself in favour of the immediate cession of Danzig to Poland.
The aim of the French politicians simply was to weaken Germany decisively, and to strengthen the Polish position, in order to keep Germany under control, especially on her new eastern borders.
In recognition of the French support regarding Polish territorial ambitions, France would stipulate, from Poland, a privileged position for herself vis-a vis the Danzig Harbour, in order to safeguard her own interest in the eastern area of the Baltic Sea.
Undoubtedly, Poland was only too willing, and always eager to comply to the French conditions. Great Britain, on the other hand, had her own agenda to push, therefore was more intent to preserve, and restore the balance of power on the European continent at all cost, especially so since the treaty of Utrecht in1713.
Great Britain therefore was not ever in the mood to agree, or give way to the cession of Danzig to Poland.
Although not being adverse to the separation of the important Trading centre of Danzig from Germany, Great Britain neither wanted a further strengthening of Poland by the acquisition of Danzig, nor did she want to see a French political extension into the Baltic Sea.
Furthermore, British politicians were also very much alarmed about the situation in Russia, and feared that the Soviet revolution could have dire consequences for Central Europe, a developing situation that could also affect the British position in the end.
Out of these considerations, the idea was born to separate Danzig from Germany.
Not as a part of the new Polish State, but, by giving the City of Danzig, again, the status of a FREE CITY.
So it came to pass, Poland and France, in spite all their efforts, were not succeeding with their plans and intentions, for in the end, it was decided by the great allied powers, to finally resolve the issue, and make DANZIG, a FREE STATE.
The decision made by the great allied and associated powers regarding DANZIG, was, in itself, a violation of the principle, and right, of self-determination.
The decision of the victorious allied powers to separate the city of DANZIG,
and its surrounding areas from Germany was an evident violation of the principle
of the right of self-determination of peoples.
In this case, of German people, people of German culture, heritage and language, belonging, until 1919, to Germany.
The very roots to this right of self-determination are very old indeed, being of religious origin, dating back to the middle ages, and have been politically recognized already during the war of the Peloponnesus between Sparta and Athens (404 - 431).
During WW I, the right of self-determination was frequently mentioned, and
was used, misused and abused, by means of war propaganda, by either side.
In regard to the self-determination of the people of DANZIG, when it came to the crunch after WW I, that was completely disregarded.
Furthermore, no mention at all was made of the proclamation by the American President Woodrow Wilson, who had made it clear that there was not going to be any change of the status quo against the will of the resident people who otherwise would be gravely affected.
In this stated principle, the German government had trusted in November of 1918, yet the victorious allied powers had not kept to assurances and principles adhered to.
The residents of DANZIG simply did not want their City to be separated from Germany, and annexed by Poland.
This determination by the people of DANZIG was expressed on several occasions by mass protests.
It must also be remembered that the Mayor of DANZIG, Dr. Bail, acting on behalf of the local authorities, dispatched a telegram to the German Department of the Interior, on October 14, 1918.
The words of the telegram ran as follows: "President Wilson wishes to unite territories with unquestionable Polish population to build the new, independent Polish nation.
On the other hand, we state; DANZIG can never belong to this Poland!
Our old trading city of DANZIG has been formed and extended by the vigor of German culture. It is German to the core!
We claim the right of self-determination for us. We want to remain German forever!"
On behalf of the Municipal Council,
Mayor of the City of Danzig
In this connection it must be noted, and pointed out: the whole of the Danzig
population was outraged at any suggestion concerning a union with Poland, and
took part in many, many meetings and peaceful demonstrations, again, and again,
to express their ardent will that they must, and ought to, remain with Germany.
A massive manifestation of the iron will took place on March 23, 1919, when 70, 000 residents of the city of DANZIG, out of a total 220, 000, came together at the Heumarkt to demonstrate their unbending will to remain with Germany.
All the demonstrations, rallies and manifestations, and exhibitions of their true feelings by a populace that was to 98% of German culture and heritage, proved, without any doubt, the strength of their conviction of remaining with Germany.
Nevertheless, foolish political considerations took precedent. The victorious allied powers could not be moved, or influenced by the will of the people concerned that was expressed in such a clear, impressive and convincing way by the inhabitants of DANZIG.
Common sense went out of the window when the allied powers determined the destiny of the people of DANZIG.
And by doing so, the allied powers did sow the seed of doom for the whole of human kind.
The separation of DANZIG, and its surroundings, from Germany soon became a
Accordingly, the City of Danzig, together with the region described in Article # 100 of the Treaty of Versailles, was established as a FREE CITY.
DANZIG, the FREE CITY, came under protection by the Geneva League of Nations in accordance of all the regulations given by the articles # 100 - 108 of the Treaty of Versailles.
The Versailles Treaty had been signed by the respective representatives of
the great allied powers, and, under protest, by the two delegates of the German
government, on June 28, 1919.
The Treaty came into force on January 20, 1920, after a first protocol regarding the ratification had been deposited in Paris.
The Versailles treaty has been described, in unflattering terms, as a Dictate.
And a Dictate, as later admitted by most of the responsible Politicians of that time, it certainly was!
According to article # 100 of that treaty, Germany had to renounce, forever and a day, all rights and claims towards the territory of the future FREE STATE OF DANZIG, in favour of the allied and associated powers.
When finally the Versailles Treaty had come into force on January 20, 1920, the region of DANZIG was thus separated from Germany.
All German juridical powers ceased to exist, and was replaced by the sovereign authority of the great allied powers, on condition that DANZIG, from then on, was to remain a FREE CITY.
According to article # 102 of the Versailles treaty, the FREE CITY of DANZIG be under the umbrella, and protection of the Geneva League of Nations.
A former German government official, Dr. Heinrich Sahm, was commissioned, on January 13, 1920, to carry out all the necessary duties of the newly born State for the present, until further notice.
On February 11, 1920, the last German military contingent left the region of DANZIG.
The now FREE STATE of DANZIG came under military occupation by the British army on the same day.
Dr. Heinrich Sahm, the German government official, provisionally appointed to hold Office in the interim, resigned.
Sir Reginald Tower, a high-ranking British military Officer, took charge of DANZIG'S State affairs, and became the supreme power.
During this period of military occupation, the FREE CITY of DANZIG was finally constituted on October 27, 1920, in accordance with the resolutions made by the allied and associated powers.
DANZIG delegates agreed to the resolution on November 09, 1920.
A solemn proclamation, of DANZIG as a FREE CITY, was finally made on November 15, 1920.
On the same Day, the Paris Convention between the FREE CITY of DANZIG, and the Republic of POLAND, came into force.
The DANZIG nationality
When the Versailles Treaty came into force on January 20, 1920, all former
German citizens living in the region of DANZIG lost their German nationality,
by virtue of new laws.
In place of that, they were to get citizenship of the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
The German text of the article # 105 of the Versailles Treaty determines, all German citizen domiciled on the territory of the future FREE CITY of DANZIG would lose their German nationality, and become citizens of DANZIG.
But, the German text is an inexact translation from the French text of the Versailles Treaty, inasmuch as the French text of the article # 105 of the above mentioned treaty states:
'that the German citizens will lose their German citizenship ,,en vue de devenir nationaux de la Ville Libre de DANTZIG''.
The moment when the Versailles Treaty came into force, namely on January 20, 1920, the FREE CITY of DANZIG did not even exist!
Here we need to remember that the solemn proclamation of the FREE CITY of DANZIG was granted Statehood, that happened only 10 Month later, on November 15, 1920.
Only then, on November 15, 1920, the inhabitants of the FREE CITY of DANZIG got a citizenship of their own. This happened, paradoxically, with retroactive effect, from January 20, 1920.
Nevertheless, according to article # 106 of the Versailles Treaty, all German citizens having passed the age of 18 years, had the opportunity to opt in favour of German nationality within a period of 2 years after of the Treaty of Versailles came into force.
Anyone taking such an option had to relocate to Germany within a period of 12 Month.
In that case, they were allowed to keep all immovable goods in DANZIG, therefore, were not obliged to sell.
On the other hand, they were given permission to take all of their removable goods with them, without having to pay any import, or export duties.
The Constitution of DANZIG
According to article # 103 of the Versailles Treaty, and with the understanding
of a High Commissioner of the Geneva League of Nations, a constitution had to
be prepared for the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
This constitution was to be passed by orderly nominated representatives of the FREE CITY, and had to be approved, as well as guaranteed by the Geneva League of Nations.
A provisional constitutional committee which counted 53 Members, after some arguments concerning the number of Polish Members, finally agreed to "outline a constitution for the FREE and HANSE-CITY of DANZIG ", but only after some long, and hard deliberations.
According to article # 103, this drafted constitution was to be submitted to "orderly nominated representatives of the FREE CITY of DANZIG' for examination and revision.
With regards to this, Sir Reginald Tower, the military Commander, in his capacity as the High Commissioner of the Geneva League of Nations, had ordered a general election of a constituent assembly on March 27, 1920.
Such an assembly was to be composed of 120 representatives of the inhabitants of the FREE STATE.
The election date for this was set on May 15, 1920.
The election results were as follows:
German national people's party (DNVP) 28. 2% = 34 seats
Communists (independent social democrats) 15.8% = 21 seats
Social democrats (SPD) 15.5% = 19 seats
Centrum party (Catholics) 13.9% = 17 seats
Free economic association) = 12 seats
German democrats ) 18.5%=10 seats
Polish party 6.1% = 7 seats
The constitutional draft was read for the first time on June 18 to June 19,
For the second time between July 27 and August 07, 1920, and for the third, and last time, on August 10, and on August 11, 1920.
The final result was that the draft had been accepted by 68 votes to 44. There was one abstention.
As article # 103, paragraph 1, of the Versailles Treaty provided the guarantee of the constitution of DANZIG by the Geneva League of Nations, the agreement of the League of Nations was necessary.
On November 17, 1920, the Geneva League of Nations accepted the DANZIG constitution under condition that some minor alterations were to be made as to the text.
This minor modification was made by the constituent assembly, and the DANZIG constitution was finally approved, without any further reservation, by the Geneva League of Nations.
This is to say; the Danzig constitution, thereupon, had the full guarantee, and was formally taken under the protection of the League of Nation.
The constitution of the FREE STATE of DANZIG became law, and into force, on June 14, 1922.
The convention between POLAND and DANZIG
According to article # 104 of the Versailles Treaty, the FREE CITY of DANZIG,
and the Republic of POLAND, had to arrange their relations contractually.
This proved not easy to do, and needed the power of mediation involving the allied and associated great powers making up the bulk of the Geneva League of Nations.
Both parties to the contract had to be reminded to take in consideration the conditions contained in article # 104 of the Treaty of Versailles, especially items 1 to 6.
According to the above mentioned article # 104, the convention was based on certain provisions as proposed by the allied and associated powers.
The contract, therefore, had to be agreed upon, and signed, by both parties, namely, by the
POLISH REPUBLIC, and by the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
From the very beginning, to achieve some kind of concord proved to be most problematic.
DANZIG decided to sign the document only after some dramatic deliberations.
POLAND, on the other hand, did not want to sign at all, but was put under enormous pressure by the League of Nations.
Even though, whereas DANZIG, most reluctantly did sign the document eventually, Poland did not sign the contract, known as "Paris Convention" by the due date, November 09, 1920, for she wanted to include more, and more, favourable conditions and regulations.
Whereas, the FREE CITY of DANZIG was solemnly proclaimed on November 15, 1920,
the signature of POLAND, however, was still missing.
This action forced the hand of Poland, with no other alternative, shortly afterwards, however, Poland did do sign the Convention document, the League of Nations would not have it otherwise.
The Paris Convention was later on supplemented by the Warsaw Economic Treaty of October 24, 1921.
POLAND, and the FREE CITY of DANZIG, also concluded the so-called "Harbour Contract" in 1933.
The FREE CITY of DANZIG certainly adhered to the Polish customs area, but constitutionally had its own customs authority, and its own Customs officials.
DANZIG is proclaimed a FREE CITY
After the Paris Convention treaty had been signed by the parties concerned,
paving the way for the necessary foundations been laid, accomplished and all
conditions fulfilled, in order to proclaim the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
This proclamation took place on November 15, 1920, in a solemn session of the constituent assembly.
By this solemn action DANZIG became a member of the international community of sovereign states, representing a separate independent subject in accordance with international law.
Nevertheless, it has to be emphasized that the decision of the allied and associated
great powers regarding DANZIG violated the 14-points-program of President Wilson
that had been one of the cornerstones for the armistice between Germany and
her former enemies.
Furthermore, it was also a violation of the principle of the right of self-determination of peoples, in this case, of the inhabitants of DANZIG.
Ironically, the principle of self-determination was one of the most important aims for which the allied and associated powers had fought the war. That aim had been stated, over and over again.
In the case of DANZIG, however, this principle has been cast aside, and totally ignored.
Therefore, the decision then, not to apply this principle to the people of DANZIG, must be seen, and taken, as being a purely arbitrary action, lacking any lawful basis or any human consideration.
Furthermore, the whole of the Versailles Treaty has to be called in question, as it is incompatible with any norm of international law.
The Vienna Agreement of May 23, 1969, on the law of treaties (article # 49/deceit, # 52/pressure on a state by menace or application of violence, and # 53/treaties incompatible with a compelling norm of general international law.)
Consequently, and nevertheless, from the moment of proclamation on November 15, 1920, it remains a fact that DANZIG, together with the region that was allocated to the City proper in accordance to article # 100 of the Treaty of Versailles, was indeed constituted as a FREE STATE.
The three most important prerequisites that characterize a state according to general interpretations were fulfilled by the FREE STATE of DANZIG:
It had a national territory of its own, a nation with its own nationality, its own supreme power of decision making, as manifested in its own constitution.
It had its own laws, language, currency, national flag, authorities, identity and armorial bearings.
The denomination of "FREE STATE' is an equivalent concept for "Republic",
which indicates the form of governance it exercised.
A republic, or a free state may be called a "People's State" in opposition to a monarchy.
DANZIG has been created a FREE STATE, not only independent from Germany, but also from Poland!
The FREE STATE of DANZIG pursued her own policies, and was criticized for it, by none other than Poland.
The fact that Poland had been granted exceptional rights in certain areas like customs and railways by the victorious allied powers of WW I, did not alter certain facts of independents and sovereignty.
Article # 2 of the Paris convention treaty of November 09, 1920, contains the following determination:
'It will be the concern of the Polish government to secure the management of foreign affairs of the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
Poland has, time, and time again, tried to deprive the FREE STATE of DANZIG
of her status as a sovereign State per se.
The repeated attempts can only be explained in terms of concealed political motivations by Poland, for no legal reasons ever existed for Poland to act in much underhanded manner.
Yet, Poland, over the years that followed, engaged in much chicanery, and worse, in order to terrorize the Danzig population, to frighten, to belittle, to undermine and demonize them.
Poland, however, persisted in attempts to denigrate the status of DANZIG as a State, although it was very clear from the text of several articles of the Paris convention treaty that the FREE CITY of DANZIG always had the character of a separate state.
A decisive criterium for the presents of a state is, among other things; the existence of an evident specific nationality.
In articles # 2, 3, and # 8 of the above mentioned treaty, it is 'expressis verbis' spoken of: "nationals of the FREE CITY of DANZIG'.
That clearly means: 'neither Nationals of Germany, nor that of Poland!
It also means; 'neither of whatever other nationality, but exclusively those Nationals belonging to the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
The constitution of the FREE CITY OF DANZIG, of June 14, 1922, also speaks of "nationals" in its articles # 8, 72, 76, and # 84 to 91, a concept that intentionally meant nationals of the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
The Polish thesis that DANZIG was no State whatsoever, has always been successfully contradicted!
The decision passed by the High Commissioner of the Geneva League of Nations on November 07, 1925: " DANZIG is a state as defined by terms of international law",
This clear statement, in its clarity, does not leave any doubt or uncertainty about it.
DANZIG as a protectorate of the League of Nations
Many facts support the idea that the FREE STATE of DANZIG must at least be
considered a political creation similar to a Protectorate, although it is nowhere
mentioned, or explicitly called " protectorate".
It is characteristic of a protectorate that the protecting power (the Protector) takes charge of the external representation and protection of the protected state, exerting its influence to a certain extend on the internal affairs even.
The character of a protectorate may be substantiated in two ways: Either based on a bilateral treaty relating to international law, with one state taking refuge with the other, or several states coming to a contractual agreement to install an international institution as a protector for a certain territory, to which a proper political character will be adjudicated.
Referring to this, in the case of DANZIG, the legal situation was particularly confused, to say the least.
According to article #2 of the Paris Treaty of November 09, 1920, it was the Polish Government's concern to guarantee the management of Foreign affairs of the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
In addition to that, Poland also was charged with the responsibility of protection to all DANZIG nationals abroad.
Nevertheless, it was always up to the FREE STATE of DANZIG to pursue a free and independent foreign policy that protected and promoted her own national and economic interest.
But, considering the close implication of the economics of Poland and DANZIG, the allied and associated powers allowed the Polis government - although very much in a veiled manner - to exert a more than certain influence on the foreign policy of DANZIG.
If DANZIG, as it happened far too often, should try to follow a foreign policy contrary to Poland's interest, big bully Poland would pull out all stops to prevent just that!
In spite of the Polish government's responsibility to secure the foreign affairs of the FREE CITY of DANZIG in foreign countries, and take care of the protection abroad of DANZIG citizens, Poland, more often than not, did quite the opposite.
Poland therefore could not ever be relied on, nor trusted either, or could ever be called a "protector" of a "Protectorate DANZIG", indeed, at many a time, Poland behaved like the proverbial Fox guarding the Chicken house.
The position of guardian, as it was, has never been adjudicated by anyone, certainly not by the victorious allied powers of WW I.
In the case of DANZIG such was not envisaged, nor was it fair and imaginable! Yet, it happened, time after time. Poland, apart from her chicanery, a Nation of some 35 Million people of diversity, armed to the teeth, throw her weight around, intimidated the mere
400, 000 inhabitants of DANZIG, who were made defenseless by order.
DANZIG was a matter of dispute in 1918/19, and Poland demanded, and demanded the incorporation of the City, by means of force, if necessary, into Poland.
To meet the demands of Poland would have been an aberration, a travesty of justice, for the DANZIG population was German to the core.
Trying to find a way out of this situation, the allied and associated powers rejected Poland's demands, and ordered instead the creation of DANZIG as a FREE STATE.
That was decided by all the allies, the only notable exception was France.
For it was France, France alone, eager to meet Poland's demands of an annexation of DANZIG.
In the light of the prevailing facts, under the circumstances, everything points to the illogical conclusion to appoint Poland as the protector of the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
It made no sense, no sense at all!
It is also to be understood; from the Warsaw economic treaty of October 24, 1921, that DANZIG certainly was not a Polish protectorate, such a notion too, is not logically defensible.
On the other hand, many facts support the view that it was the Geneva League of Nations that indeed must be considered as the true 'protector" of the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
The GENEVA LEAGUE of NATIONS, established as direct result of the Treaty of Versailles, in order to preserve, and promote peace among all the nations after the horrors of WWI, was there to take care of the protection of the FREE CITY of DANZIG, and of her citizens.
The Geneva League of Nations was also the guarantor of the DANZIG constitution.
Article # 102 of the Treaty of Versailles explicitly determines that the FREE CITY, foundation of which was a commitment as given by the great allied and associated powers, is placed under the protection of the Geneva League of Nations.
Additionally, article # 103 of the Versailles Treaty contains the very important clause that the DANZIG constitution has to be guaranteed by the League of Nations.
There we have it, nothing could be clearer than that!
As already mentioned above, the Geneva League of Nations has taken over this commitment in 1920.
Complementary regulations not withstanding, as such regulations, in the individual case, such as envisaged, if Germany would become the aggressor, then the military protection of the FREE CITY of DANZIG, should be handed over to Poland.
The idea behind it was, Poland, being close to DANZIG, would be well suited, ready any time, to come to the assistance of Danzig, should such an eventuality arise.
That was the opinion of the League of Nations (resolution of the board of the League of Nations of June 22, 1921)
This means, Poland was to guarantee the military protection of the FREE STATE of DANZIG, if necessary, and only on account of being called upon, or by receiving specific orders as given by the League of Nations.
From all of this, as outlined above, it must be concluded that the FREE CITY
of DANZIG had to be considered at least to be a creation similar to a protectorate,
and the Protector was none other than the League of Nations, at the latest,
since November 15, 1920.
The very date the FREE STATE of DANZIG came into being and was proclaimed as a State.
It also must be deduced that the FREE STATE of DANZIG had to be treated as an entity similar to a Protectorate, in the same way as is normally the case, and done in the case of real Protectorates.
THIS REALLY MEANS: THE GENEVA LEAGUE OF NATIONS SHOULD HAVE BEEN OBLIGED TO PROTECT DANZIG, NOT ONLY IN September OF 1939, BUT ALSO IN MARCH- APRIL 1945.
Not only the (illegal) incorporation of the FREE CITY of DANZIG into Germany, but also the, (equally illegal) the brutal annexation of DANZIG, as proclaimed by a communist ruled Polish regime, even before all War hostilities in Europe had come to an end, signified an infringement of the integrity of the FREE STATE of DANZIG, therefore violated all provisions of international law, on both accounts!
Consequently, what we have here is the law of the jungle, as all of the violations as stated above cannot be, with the best will in the world, considered as being right and proper, or to be in accordance with proper laws of humankind, or civilized society.
Notwithstanding the occupation by German troops in 1939, and the following
occupation by the Red army of the Soviet Union, and the consequent land grab
by a communist inspired Poland, the FREE CITY of DANZIG has remained a subject
matter of international law.
Therefore, still has to be considered a territory occupied by a foreign power.
DANZIG in the period between the years of 1920 to 1939
In order to achieve their objective, i. e. to dominate DANZIG, and to be able
to annex the territory of the FREE STATE of DANZIG, at any given time and opportunity,
the Poles were never afraid to bully, and to raise permanent difficulties with
the Free State, and her inhabitants.
Chicaneries of all kinds were the name of the game Poland liked to play all the time.
In this context, mention must be made of the often, and repeated Polish attempts to paralyse the railroad traffic in DANZIG.
Equally disgusting was the infamous Polish postal putsch and other daily disruption of civil life to the citizens of Danzig, like the provocation of Polish militia patrols marching in full regalia, armed to the teeth, through the streets of the City, to name just a few of the more unpleasant occurrences.
And then there was the building of the new Polish Seaport at nearby Gdynia.
Access to the Baltic Sea, as Poland always liked to pretend it was her lifeblood, was only of second consideration to her.
By building the new Seaport at Gdynia, realized by French capital and other strong support, Poland really showed her true face and intention.
The name of the game, as early as 1924, was to throttle DANZIG economically, and bring her trade to a standstill.
Soon Poland bypassed the Danzig Harbour altogether, diverted all the Sea transportation to the new Harbour, by charging only nominally custom rates to other Sea trading nations.
The erection of a Polish ammunition depot on the Westerplatte, a Peninsula that was formerly a popular Seaside resort for the Danzig population, and its billeting of a permanent Polish military contingency, that grew from a permitted (by the League of Nations) troop strength of just 10 Soldiers, to a full manned Company of 185 Men at the beginning of the War.
Needless to say that the Fortress, built on the Westerplatte did control the entrance to the Danzig Harbour completely.
A Fortress it really was that the Poles did build, in secret, for it took the combined forces of the Germans full 8 days of direct attack to crack it, so fortified it was.
This clandestine ongoing Polish affair at the entrance of the Danzig Harbour did escalate into an ugly affront and confrontation from very early on, and soured all meaningful relations between DANZIG and Poland.
Add to that the Polish chicanery regarding the economical and customs policy, resulting in the Polish boycott of DANZIG products of all kind, and we have a picture of constant Polish oppression and overwhelming display of Polish arrogance, tyranny and coercion.
But we also had the citizens of DANZIG, bravely resisting, in spite of all the adversities, hardship and economical downturns, resisting, and warding off, all the constant Polish aggressions and provocations!
Because of the foregoing, as a result of it, as Poland did not keep the peace,
more often than not, there were most strained relations between Germany and
This was caused invariable by the different opinions of both sides regarding the FREE STATE of DANZIG. Whenever this drama was played out, DANZIG was the meat in the Sandwich.
Whereas, Germany was always hopeful that, on occasion, a revision of the terms of the Treaty of Versailles concerning DANZIG was possible, and would, in the end lead to a return of DANZIG to Germany, Poland on the other hand stirred the pot by making threatening noises as to the annexation of DANZIG, by force of arms, if necessary.
That was the state of affairs through all the Years DANZIG was sitting on a
powder keg, on top of a Volcano, ready to erupt any moment!
For any sane person who seriously anylised the situation developing it became very clear from the very beginning that regulation(s) concerning DANZIG, based on the Versailles Treaty, was unnatural and untenable in the long run.
10 years before the National Socialists came into power, the British High Commissioner
of the Geneva League of Nations, Mervin MacDonald, shortly after taking Office
at DANZIG, on January 30, 1923, expressed his observations in most eloquent
"If Poland were wise, it would agree to the unification of DANZIG with the Reich, because it could not impede this in the long run!"
Till 1933, the German government had always appealed, and applied directly
to the Geneva League of Nations, never to the Polish government, to find a peaceful
solution to the of all the problems concerning DANZIG.
Bothering affairs to which Polish and German interest opposed each other.
After the National Socialists had reached a position of power in Germany, this policy changed completely.
Henceforth, Berlin tried to regulate questions in dispute between Poland and Germany, and questions concerning DANZIG in particular, directly by initiating negotiations with Poland.
The National Socialists had become an important power also in DANZIG, also in 1933.
On the Elections for the People's Diet, of May 28, 1933, they obtained 50.
03% of all votes cast.
The elections for the district assemblies on November 18, 1934, even showed a better result, for they won nearly 80% of the popular vote.
In the following year of 1935, on April 07, the National Socialists still topped the polls with 59.3% of all the votes.
Obviously, the German government used this expression of the people as a welcome tool to further German ambitions to force the DANZIG issue, i.e. the possible return of the FREE STATE of DANZIG to the Reich.
Since 1935, Hitler made every attempt to come to terms on the question of DANZIG with the Polish government.
Warsaw, however, refused to talk. Especially, after the death of Polish Marshall Pilsudski, all doors, and all Polish political channels remained to be closed, and shut.
In the period between 1919 and 1939, additional differences arose between Poland
and Germany that gave more grounds for strained relations.
With all good intentions, the German government did not overcome those difficulties, was struggling all the time, as Poland was not prepared to sit down to negotiate, no matter what.
Apart from casual agreements, like the Polish-German non-aggression pact of 1934, the economical and cultural treaty in the same year, and the Czechoslovakian crisis in 1938, (Munich treaty) that enabled Poland to grab a piece of Land the unfortunate country, relations with Germany went from bad to worse, always downhill, with the Polish government, of the Day, of any day, being beyond reticence!
The dramatic crunch then came on, what we Danziger call 'Black Friday',
at 04. 45, in the morning of September 01, 1939.
On that Day of infamy, we Danziger experienced the eruption of a War that happened directly at our doorstep, at the Fortress inside the DANZIG Harbour that the Poles had managed to build for themselves in order to control and intimidate us.
That bloody War was in the making ever since the dreadful dictate of the Treaty of Versailles, and the fires for that War, that had been stoked by the Polish Republic, also!
A War that, in the end engulfed the whole of the World, and turned a European conflict into an inferno of hellish proportion, with the FREE STATE of DANZIG named to be the catalyst and troublemaker.
Can the Free City of DANZIG be really considered as being a neutral State?
The constitution of the FREE CITY of DANZIG has no provision, nor does it contain
any article from which it might be concluded that it has the status of a neutral
However, in view of the fact that Poland was involved in a War with Soviet Russia in 1920, and at the same time had instigated yet another War with a Baltic state, a situation that called for serious concern of getting involved in perilous danger and conflict, the constituent assembly of the FREE STATE of DANZIG, resolved on August 20, 1920, that the FREE CITY should, in all circumstances, keep out of any trouble, therefore, should be a "neutral State."
As this binding resolution by the constituent assembly required the agreement of the Geneva League of Nations, the assembly applied directly to the High Commissioner of the League of Nations, Sir Reginald Tower, requesting consent.
The League of Nations, however, did not address the issue, one way or the other, but left the request unanswered.
Therefore, the question as posed is legitimate and justified.
A resolution is a resolution, and carries weight, as expressed by the people, and should not hang in mid-air awaiting consent by an authority other than of the people who made such a resolution. Therefore, the question, as far as international law is concerned, is resolved in the affirmative.
There cannot be any doubt; the resolution of the constituent assembly must, under the circumstances, carry extra weight, for it was a situation loaded with fraught, as it was very dangerous for a small, defenseless state, vulnerable to all kinds of aggression.
Two ships, full of all kinds of munitions for the Polish army, had arrived at the DANZIG Harbour.
In this situation, Danzig Dock workers took the lead, and refused to load, or unload any of the dangerous cargo.
Nothing the Poles could do about it, then to harass the Dockers. And harass they did, nearly wrecked the place.
It was in this very situation that prompted the legislators to step in, they came up with the resolution.
Such declaration of neutrality has not been repeated ever since, as no other and further need did arise. Poland did learn the lesson. Any further declaration of perpetual neutrality, a firm Neutrality that firmly existed in every Danziger mind, was thought to be superfluous.
Notwithstanding the above, the concrete situation that brought the resolution
on in the first place, it is still justified to examine the question; can the
FREE CITY of DANZIG really consider herself to be neutral?
Everything considered, and as everything supports the view, the reality speaks for itself, therefore, the answer must be in the affirmative.
A declaration of neutrality may be given by any independent small state for it is better to be neutral than run alone with a pack of wolves.
A state therefore proclaims its neutrality because it is in the best interest of the state, as it takes special care in the best way it can.
A state that declares its neutrality has no obligation to consider the affairs of others, all it has to do is to take care of itself.
The unilateral declaration of neutrality may be made in circumstances of danger, and a threatening situation arising, but may also have no other reason than just a general precaution.
Although the resolution that was passed by the constituent assembly of DANZIG, on
August 20, 1920, is doubtlessly to be seen in connection with the concrete and dangerous situation that had developed, and was a dire threat to the very existence of the state, it must also be supposed that the ultimate objective of the declaration was of a neutrality of permanent order.
The writing was on the wall, it was by no means an imaginary idea that Poland, at the drop of the hat, would start a war, with any of her neighbours, for, as soon as the nascient Polish state came into being, belligerent Poland did just that, started a war of aggression, not just with the Soviet Union, but with Lithuania as well.
A (future) conflict with Germany also was on the cards, any day, and absolutely probable, as history will tell us.
No one, especially us Danziger, needed a crystal ball to foresee such a catastrophe to happen considering the most vulnerable situation us poor, made defenseless Bastards, by order of the League of Nations, that failed to protect us, were in.
The FREE STATE of DANZIG therefore, had a vital interest in making it clear, and explicit, that it would always prefer to be neutral, and stay neutral, in case of any impending, immediate and future conflict.
Therefore, let there be no doubt about, the FREE STATE of DANZIG considered herself a neutral identity and state, and wanted to be treated as such.
There is yet another argument for the neutrality of the FREE STATE of DANZIG,
having been disarmed completely, not allowed to carry, or to produce even small
armory like handguns, even the Police on patrol was not allowed to carry fire
arms on duty, the FREE STATE of DANZIG was at the mercy of everyone, and therefore
had to rely on the goodwill and protection of the big Boys, the Geneva League
The League of Nations was an international organization based on a voluntary alliance of different states, especially concerned to keep the peace, and to maintain, and to prevent any violation of international law occurring!
This being the case, the Geneva League of Nations had to be considered of being a neutral authority from the very beginning.
A neutral identity, and authority it was, the League of Nations, established for the purpose of keeping, or, as the case might be, restoring peace, even among its own members, by way of active intervention or joint action against any rogue state if found to be in violation of international law.
For this to achieve the League of Nation could, if it had to be that drastic, take sides.
Taking sides however becomes problematic, and is a contradiction in terms of an authority that is supposed to be neutral and evenhanded.
This very fact has to be critically examined and looked at, especially as far as the case of the FREE STATE of DANZIG is concerned.
The FREE STATE of DANZIG was separated from Germany for reason of expediency, convenience, for reason political, not practical and lacking any jurisdiction and judicial consideration.
Such then were the very reason why the Versailles Treaty, and later the Geneva League of Nations did not dare to have DANZIG incorporated into the Polish Republic, probably in the (forlorn) hope that the ever burning DANZIG QUESTION would resolve itself in time.
But as it happened, establishing DANZIG as a FREE STATE, the Geneva League
of Nations immediately took on the responsibility of protection of DANZIG, always
being aware what awful responsibility that really was!
As the situation then developed, it was a matter of course for the League of Nation that DANZIG should stay out of trouble, and should not ever involve herself in any dispute, or altercation that, over time, again and again, developed between Germany and Poland during the period between WW I and WW II, but always stay on the sidelines, acting in a manner neutral to both, Poland and Germany.
It was also not imaginable that the intellectual creators of the FREE STATE of DANZIG would have wished, encouraged or allowed the new state to act in a non-neutral country.
Let us just imagine what would have happened if, after being created, and proclaimed
a FREE STATE on November 15, 1920, the people of DANZIG would immediately have
expressed their will and determination to call for the return of the status
quo as it was at the end of WW I, namely the return to the Motherland.
Let us further imagine a situation were the people of DANZIG, having gained their independence, and therefore the maturity and possibility of free action on the bases of human rights and the principle of self-determination, that being a fundamental right of every human being.
This basic right of self-determination had been denied to the people of DANZIG in 1919!
At that time there was a revolution going on in Russia.
A people's revolution that was sending shock waves throughout the whole of Europe, as in DANZIG too they were singing the "Internationale" full blast,
yet, unthinking, dyed in the wool politicians, had the audacity to deny decent people the right of self-determination, and as it happened, by doing so, by engaging in such a criminal act, plunged the whole world into an abyss.
In this context, comments made by the Chairman of the League of Nations, Mr.
Leon Bourgeois, during his inaugural speech at the Paris meeting on January
16, 1920, are especially interesting.
Mr. Leon Bourgeois had many things to say that made a lot of sense, among other things he said: " There are a number of territories in Europe that could cause international altercations because of their geographical situation, or because of the diversity of their population. These territories have been partially, or totally put under the administration of the League of Nations, such as the FREE CITY of DANZIG, in need of protection of which the League of Nation has to take special care of."
The words of Mr. Bourgeois proved to be true, and quite prophetic. The League
of Nations would have done well, either to do a proper job in protecting us,
or, given the circumstances that favoured a reversal of the bad situation, namely,
leaving the City of Danzig a part of Germany.
The main culprit of the mess created that ultimately resulted in a blood bath never seen, or experienced before by humankind, was France, and Poland. Great Britain, also part of the cabal was responsible to a lesser extent.
The real damage however was done by Woodrow Wilson, the pious, American President. The very one who had lied America into the War in Europe, although it was none of his business.
All of the above, and many more, played a hazardous game of power politics to the detriment of all of humankind.
Remarkable also, the United States of America, even washed her hands of the Geneva League of Nations, and did not ever want to have anything to do in clearing up the bloody mess America had left behind.
The decision then by the victorious allied and associated powers to find some
kind of compromise in the case regarding DANZIG was the worst of all other evils.
For the people of DANZIG who had no respite from all the years of suffering during the Great War, the War that was supposed to end all Wars, the decision to separate their Homeland from Germany, and become prey to the Polish eagle, that decision was rubbing salt into their wounds.
A rude awakening, and violation it was of the right to self-determination, a self-determination that, coming from the lips of the American President, who was never tired to preach of such virtues belonging, from now on, or so he said, to all of the peoples of the World.
In reality however, such words turned out to be just blatant propaganda lies.
In this regard, we must charge all those politicians responsible for having pulled the wool over our ears in abominable fashion, for having deceived us for the purpose of looking after their own interest.
Yet, there were some politicians, a rare breed indeed, not only from Germany, but also from the ranks of the victorious allies, who took some interest, and some consideration to the welfare of people, and did their best for the preservation of peace in the world.
Unfortunately, of those there were just not enough to warn of the dangers lurking. Dangers that had been created out of sheer stupidity, hatred, homophobia, neglect, irresponsibility and other lunatic insanities, as was the evil situation set up by separating DANZIG from Germany.
The FREE CITY of DANZIG, and the Second World War
WW II started on our doorsteps, at DANZIG, when the old Battleship Schleswig
Holstein, of WW I vintage, that had come to DANZIG on a "good will mission"
opened fired, point-blank, onto the Polish fortification at the Westerplatte,
on precisely 04. 45 hrs., on the morning of September 01, 1939.
Prior to that, some German troops had been brought in secretly into the territory of the FREE STATE of DANZIG some days before.
Evidently, the plan was for the German military to operate against Polish military
forces that had been allowed by the Geneva League of Nations to be stationed
on our DANZIG territory.
Indeed the League of Nations is guilty of having not only tolerated the stationing of Polish forces on DANZIG soil, but actually given full consent to this kind of violation.
In addition to the Polish forces stationed on DANZIG territory, Poland had
also smuggled in many regular soldiers and heavy armament, had hidden them in
secret places to facilitate the immediate possession of DANZIG CITY.
Members of the regular Polish army, and some illegally armed Poles (today we would call the Terrorists) that did not belong to any Polish armed forces, immediately took part in the conflict unfolding that was carried out on the territory of DANZIG.
In one clear swoop, German troops had occupied the territory of DANZIG on that
day, September 01, 1939.
Except for some pockets of resistance, especially on the Fortress Westerplatte, lasting more than a week, Poles defended themselves courageously, but without any prospects.
With the drama in full swing, the start of the War, both of the belligerent parties, i.e. Germany and Poland, had violated pertinent rules of international law, by acting the way they did, in an illegal manner, on the territory of DANZIG.
More of this illegality was to follow, for it became apparent that the fighting
that took place on DANZIG soil was only the prelude of what was to become WW
II, with further proceedings violating international law taking place committed
by both countries, Germany and Poland, participating in this War.
The consequences of which the FREE STATE of DANZIG, and her innocent people is suffering to this very day!
On August 23, 1939, the senate of DANZIG had issued a decree that enabled the local Nazi Boss, by the name of Albert Forster, who was not a Danzig national, but hailed from Nuremberg/Germany, to appoint himself Head of State of DANZIG.
This decree signified a serious infringement of the constitution of DANZIG,
it was unconstitutional, and therefore invalid.
Poland's protest against this unilateral action by the Danzig senate was swift, uncompromising and immediate.
As did the High Commissioner of the League of Nations, who did not recognize this arbitrary proceeding.
From the point of constitutional law, as well as other international laws and regulation, it is, in any case, unlawful to have an unconstitutional head of state.
On September 01, 1939, then, this unconstitutional self-appointed head of state, the local Nazi Boss, Albert Forster, went ahead and abolished the constitution of the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
All legislative and executive powers were now in the hands of the new head of state
who declared the FREE STATE of DANZIG as part of Germany.
At the same time, the local Nazi Boss, who called himself head of state, applied to Hitler, requesting the immediate incorporation of DANZIG into the Third Reich.
But it is interesting to note that under the provision of a peculiar German law, an incorporation of a country, or province even, is not possible.
To make any such incorporation legal would require 'to recover' a plebiscite
of the incorporated people concerned.
Such a plebiscite, in all probability, Hitler would have got from the DANZIG population.
But he did not bother to do so, a fait d' accompli was good enough for him.
Therefore, concerning the re-union or incorporation of the FREE STATE of DANZIG into the German Reich, such, however, did not ever happen, neither in German law nor in international law.
Nevertheless, under terms of martial law that was immediately imposed on the citizens of DANZIG, overnight, all DANZIG citizens became Germans, their DANZIG nationality was abolished.
The Nuremberg Military Tribunal, an instrument of International law that stood in judgment of the Nazi hierarchy, condemned the Leadership of the Third Reich for the aggressive acts, and violations of the integrity of the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
The same Tribunal furthermore, took special issue against that leadership for
having imposed, by way of coercion, German citizenship on the hapless DANZIG
Expressed in other words, to this very day, every Danziger is still in possession of his DANZIG nationality, this by virtue of an international law decision.
The Geneva League of Nations High Commissioner, a Swiss national, Prof. Carl Burghard, who was residing in DANZIG, was told to pack his bags, and go.
As has been already stated, the marching in of German troops into the territory of the FREE STATE OF DANZIG was an aggressive and illegal act, and the so-called incorporation into Germany even more so.
In a speech before the House of Commons, the United Kingdom war declaration
of September 03, 1939, the British Prime Minister told the House that it does
not recognize the power assumed by Mr. Albert Forster, not does it recognize
the incorporation of the FREE STATE of DANZIG into the Third Reich.
This unilateral action by the German government was called illegal, and unlawful!
There we have it!
Indeed, the United Kingdom never acknowledged or recognized the FREE CITY of DANZIG as being on the list of her enemies throughout the war years, and beyond.
Poland however was declared an enemy of Great Britain, and remained an enemy for a period of some 45 years.
The union of DANZIG with Germany, as proclaimed by the Nazis, was illegal.
In law it has no basis or validity, is therefore null and void.
DANZIG remained a state of her own, notwithstanding the German occupation.
Even the fact that the population of DANZIG is of pure German culture and character, and has repeatedly expressed in no uncertain manner where it would rather like to belong, does not change judicial reality.
Reality is; the forced return of DANZIG to Germany has never been underwritten in law, but happened in a legally uncontested way, i. e. the status of DANZIG has never been newly regulated by parties that were privy to the Versailles Treaty.
The status of DANZIG, whichever way we look at it, remains as it was, an independent state, as established in accordance with international law, the Treaty of Versailles.
The destiny of DANZIG since 1945
The occupation of DANZIG by the troops of the German Third Reich ended with
the conquest of the territory of the FREE STATE of DANZIG by the Soviet Union
and her allied Polish armed forces.
Again, we have nothing else as foreign armies of occupation intruding into realm of a state that by any definition of law never ceased to exist.
Meanwhile, in a secret agreement of July 27, 1944, between the Soviet government (Stalin) and the communist Polish government-in exile, (another Polish government-in-exile existed in London) with provisional seat in Lublin (Soviet Union) had determined future frontiers between the Soviet Union and Poland.
Accordingly, it was decided that the southern part of East Prussia, and the region of DANZIG, including the City and harbour, should fall to Poland.
Further agreements were made on February 20, 1945, among other territories
belonging to Germany, it was determined that DANZIG should be put under a Polish
administration, and occupied by Polish militia.
This was fixed in a resolution # 7558 on that day.
However, this resolution contained the explicit proviso that the Polish provisional administration of the eastern German territories allocated to Poland, including DANZIG should be limited to a time period until final fixation of Germany's boundaries.
At the Potsdam conference of July/August 1945, meeting of the big three allied
powers, Stalin, Churchill and the American President Truman that ended with
the Potsdam declaration (not a legal document, but a dictate pure and simple)
Germany's eastern boundary settlement agreed upon was confirmed.
The FREE CITY of DANZIG, although never specifically mentioned, or spelt out, should remain under Polish occupation and provisional administration.
In indecent haste, a Polish council, in true communistic style, passed a decree on March 30, 1945 that the former territory of the FREE STATE of DANZIG should be incorporated into the Polish state as district of Gdansk, therefore be a part of the new Polish republic.
By virtue of this decree the Polish authorities virtually did what the Nazis
did some years in 1939, namely, illegally initiated the annexation of DANZIG.
This action was further confirmed by other drastic measures taken shortly afterwards by Poland:
The terrible expulsion of the entire German speaking civilian population from the homeland, the FREE STATE of DANZIG by force, at the point of the Gun.
Such dreadful 'ethnic cleansing' a crime to all of humanity, was followed up by confiscation and expropriation (call it brazen robbery) of all properties, fixed or movable.
Immediately, Poland then spoke of having found " terra nullius" and stated a resettlement scheme on a grand scale.
The Polish action and excesses against the innocent population of DANZIG must
be called a transgression against all of humanity, and a violation of international
law, in the same way, and worse, as the Nazis did in 1939.
Poland too had the obligation to respect DANZIG as a FREE STATE, not only in her function as a party to the Versailles Treaty, but also as a signatory to, reluctant as it might have been, to the Paris Convention agreement of November 09, 1920, between Poland and the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
The fact that Germany had violated DANZIG'S integrity by way of (illegal) annexation of the territory of DANZIG does not entitle Poland to do likewise.
That Poland has persisted in her crime to occupy the territory of the FREE CITY of DANZIG since the end of March 1945, albeit with the active support of the Soviet Union, and with, at least some tacit consent as given by the other allied powers, does not absolve her from having violated several universally accepted norms of international law.
To repay Germany, tit for tat, on the back of innocent people, the civil population of the FREE STATE of DANZIG, is just not on, and is unforgivable.
Both belligerent parties, Poland and Germany, did not ever take into account
that during their bloody conflict and military action against each other, the
FREE CITY of DANZIG was, perhaps the very object of their mutual squabble, the
meat in the sandwich, a piece of " Prime Real Estate" but never an
active party to the dispute and argument.
No, DANZIG was a neutral state, against her own will, perhaps, but a neutral state nevertheless, and should have been respected, and treated like that, by both of the contrariants.
As to the illegal behaviour of Germany, it is exclusively a matter of international treaties broken by Germany.
Regarding Poland, there is a great number of treaties she is party to that have special reverence to DANZIG, therefore have to be listed and examined:
1. The Haag Treaty on land warfare 18. 10. 1907
2. The Versailles Treaty 28. 06. 1919
3. Paris Convention between Poland and Danzig 09. 11. 1920
4. Briand-Kellogg Pact 27. 08. 1928
5. The Atlantic Charter 14. 08. 1946
6. The Charter of the United Nations 26. 06. 1945
7. Convention on prevention of Genocide 09. 12. 1948
8. The Universal declaration of Human Rights 10. 12. 1948
9. Geneva (4th ) agreement on protection of civilians in times of war 10. 08. 1949
10. The international pact on civil and political rights 19. 12. 1966
Germany has unilaterally ignored the treaties, conventions and agreements mentioned under # 1, 2, and 4.
And with the tacit consent, or indeed explicit support of the victorious powers, for the Iron Curtain was pulled down, and Poland was firmly in the communist Camp, Poland did the same with all of the above mentioned treaties, conventions and agreements, all 10 of them.
Germany, after her defeat in 1945, was called to account for crimes committed against international law, and for crimes committed against humanity.
Poland, on the other hand, although she has violated international law no less
than Germany, seemingly gets away with murder even, mainly because she was hiding
behind the Iron Curtain for far too long.
Yet, Poland continues on her merry way with unlawful proceedings is still illegally continuing with the unlawful occupation of the FREE STATE of DANZIG,
without shame, or being hindered by any other country, or the United Nations, successor of the Geneva League of Nations.
One wonders why? It is also amazing to learn that Poland has made friends with Germany.
Indeed, both, Germany and Poland, not only have become bosom pals but have shut out of the national conscience the existence of the FREE STATE of DANZIG and her people altogether!
At different times, Poland has tried to give a variety of reason why it has a claim on DANZIG, since 1918, and after 1945.
In trying to justify the unexplainable, the paradox and some other fantasies, Poland has come up with answers of historical, judicial, ethnic explanations, as well as moral arguments.
All of the arguments that Poland has brought forward are neither here nor there, are of little value, legally contestable, worse still, are based on fantasy and simulated ethnic data.
The above applies not only to all the Polish argumentations since 1918/19, but even more so to all Polish uttering since 1944.
Fact is: Poland will never be in a position to prove that she is entitled to DANZIG for any reason, least of it on the moral side.
The City of DANZIG never belonged to Poland! Period!
In 1454, the city had indeed broken off relations with the Teutonic Order of Knights, and had turned to the Polish King, with the prudent intention to choose him as a protector.
That was all there was to it! A part of Poland DANZIG never was.
Not then, not before, and not afterwards, nor at any other time, imaginable or otherwise.
The City fathers always knew how to preserve their special position, and their
To come to special arrangements with Polish Kings in order to preserve the City's position and integrity, is something Merchants need to do all the time in order to protect their own business.
Polish kings only knew to well to profit from the special position DANZIG was defending with much diplomatic skill.
It is no secret that the City, on many occasions, had to struggle to maintain her position against all-comers, and never was afraid of war-like confrontation, even took on England successfully, but City fathers always knew how to keep DANZIG'S independence.
For example: a Protestant DANZIG was able to hold off Protestant Sweden during the Nordic Seven Years War (1563 - 1570). The Polish king, who was involved in this war, ironically, was of Swedish origin.
In relation to Poland, DANZIG always kept an independent position, and here it must be recalled that Stephan Barthory, King of Poland, the most able King Poland ever had, although he was Hungarian by birth, had tried in vain to lay siege to DANZIG, to force the City to acknowledge his royal superiority.
The King of Poland had to learn his lesson, his attack on the City was successfully repulsed, with the result that he had to lick his wounds, and afterwards declared himself ready to recognize DANZIG'S old privileges and liberties.
Considering historical facts attached to the City, it is incongruous to listen to such propaganda nonsense, coming from a communist Polish republic, of having imagined feudal rights over DANZIG since times immemorial.
DANZIG held her most privileged position until 1792, when the second partition of Poland took place.
Poland at that time was in complete chaos, ruled by Magnates, and minor nobility, who were jealous of each other, and eager to sell their country for a song.
Needless to say, the three great powers of that time; Russia, Prussia and Austria carved Poland up among themselves.
In 1793 DANZIG became fully part of Prussia and experienced from then on an economic upturn.
In the year of 1807, it was the French army, under Napoleon Bonaparte, who besieged and occupied the City.
From 1807 to 1814 DANZIG was made a FREE CITY by order of Napoleon.
After Waterloo, however, DANZIG returned to Prussia again, and when in 1871 the Prussian King became the German Emperor, DANZIG was part of Germany.
The resolution of the Vienna Congress of 1814/15 spells it out, and left no
doubt to the fact that DANZIG belonged to Prussia, consequently, from 1871,
Over 97% of the DANZIG population were of German culture and origin, with the majority of them being Protestants.
There are the facts, the historical data, the ethnic composition of her people, and the religious realities. The realities, that speak in volumes and volumes.
Against this background, the decision then by the victorious powers of WW I, did culminate in the Treaty of Versailles, which was an aberration.
This straying from the right path of normal justice and common sense has been later, much later acknowledged by some leading political figures of either side of the fence.
It has all been a mistake! Humpty Dumpty had a big fall, and all the Kings horses, and all the Kings Men . Etc.
From all the facts as outlined above, a logical conclusion must be drawn: DANZIG
is, and remains illegally war occupied, from September 01, 1939 until this very
The (illegal, under German law even) incorporation of DANZIG into the German Reich is null and void.
Consequently, the annexation of the FREE CITY of DANZIG as carried out illegally by a communist ruled Polish republic, even before WW II in Europe came to an end, is equally unlawful.
In 1945, the Polish Republic was entrusted with to carry out a provisional administration within the territory of the FREE STATE of DANZIG.
Let there be no doubt about the real facts why, and who gave the actual order for this to happen. The order as such came from none other than Uncle Joe, better known as STALIN.
No Stalin is not the law, not in 1945, not now, for he is as dead as a DODO.
We also have to remember, to the term; provisional administration, a very important reservation was made, namely; 'until such time a peace treaty with Germany is concluded.'
As the FREE CITY of DANZIG did not belong to Germany in 1937, and again, not
in 1945 either, and DANZIG was not a belligerent party to all the bloody quarrel,
the victorious powers of WW II, including the Soviet Union in particular ought
to have annulled any occupation of the territory of DANZIG, forthwith, with
the aim to restore the integrity of the FREE CITY.
Instead, during the Tripartite conference in Potsdam (17. 07. - 02. 08. 1945) the big three widely exceeded their power by carving up Eastern Europe in arbitrary fashion.
Yet, everything, every option was left open, until such a time as a Peace treaty with Germany could be finalized.
Concerning DANZIG the situation was even more confused.
There was the Geneva League of Nations, although replaced by the UNO in late 1945, existing until April 18, 1946, still charged with the responsibility of protection of a State the League had obligation to protect.
Yet, the League of Nations even failed to transfer her responsibilities that she had over DANZIG to the United Nations Organization.
True to say, the UNO cannot be considered as a direct successor of the Geneva League of Nations, nevertheless, something very strange is going on, and it is not just a suspicion we do carry.
There is something strange in how the new Organization was set up, by less than 50 Nations, and was dominated, in the early days by the Communist Block, of which Poland was a Member.
Remarkable also, when the UNO was inaugurated late 1945, Poland, although she did not even make an appearance, was counted as a founding Member.
Yes, strange it is, to say the least.
Stranger still when we consider the noble? intentions and objectives, both of the universal organizations, the UNO and its forerunner, the Geneva League of Nations, pretended sort of way, tend to follow the same path, the same direction - the establishment of a permanent, durable and peaceful worldly order on the basis of equality, fairness and safety for all of humankind.
The question then must be asked, are some less equal than others?
The reinstatement of DANZIG as a FREE CITY
Each violation of rights obliges the originator of the violation to repair
the injustice he has caused!
As not only Germany but also the victorious powers of WW II have acted in violation of international law causing damage to the FREE CITY of DANZIG, they are obliged to right the wrong!
With reference to the FREE CITY of DANZIG, and although the problems appear to be intricate and somehow complex because it touches upon unfinished business, and the inherited burden left over by the, now defunct, Geneva League of Nations, it is imperative that this ugly mess is cleared up.
Therefore, it is advisable, as well as prudent to entrust the United Nation with the wholesale solution of this vexed question, which can only mean the reinstatement of the FREE CITY of DANZIG with all her rights.
The protection of the FREE CITY of DANZIG was, among other obligation, the paramount duty of the Geneva League of Nations.
It has become apparent the League of Nations, with some of her prominent members, like France, Great Britain, the USSR and others, themselves rather engaged in warfare than to protect DANZIG in 1939.
After 1945, although the League of Nations carried on with the business of her usual activities, she nevertheless went to sleep, forgot, or abrogated her duties, or preferred to die a slow death on April 18, 1946.
Meantime, a new champion of peace making, human rights and equality of humankind was born in the name of the United Nations Organization.
The UNO, having the same ideals, as the L of N, to bring forward, and although the UNO never clearly said so, virtually took over all the responsibilities and duties left behind by the Geneva League of Nations.
Yes, we understand all the legal jargon, and the pretence to the contrary, yet, it is clear that the new organization to defend the rights of all the people in the world, has taken the place of the League of Nations, and has, in many instances, carried on, and has completed the task where the League of Nations had left off.
In this connection, special mention must be made to the charter of the UNO.
Chapter XII of the Charter of the United Nations, that bears the title: "the international trustee system."
Article # 77, item 1b, speaks of 'mandated territories' a designation that very much bears the hallmark of the League of Nations, definitely has originated in the era of the League of Nations.
It has already been expounded ( et hoc genus omne) that the FREE CITY of DANZIG is certainly not to be considered a mandated territory, on the contrary, the situation of DANZIG in regard to international law occupies a special position.
The preparatory commission of the UNO adopted the view that the so-called "political functions" that the former League of Nations had to accomplish, did not become obliterated, were legally lasting, and would be taken into consideration and account for a transference to the United Nations, even though the Geneva League of Nations was practically no more active!
When the " preparatory commission" kept a register of the so-called
" political functions"
it also expressively took into consideration the task (not completed) the League of Nations had been entrusted to regarding the FREE CITY of DANZIG.
However, all the "political functions" have not been transferred
to the UNO.
These "political functions" ought to have been taken over, and carried on with by the United Nations in direct consequence of the withdrawal of the League of Nations!
And ought to have been acted upon, by a competent authority of the UNO in every pertinent and particular case, after a motion had been proposed by the interested party!
The United Nations may also pass a motion themselves in order to clear up, or expedite all the task and cases the League of Nations did not complete, or expressly transferred.
Prof. Dr. Friedrich Klein points to the fact that; in consequence of the expressive approbation of such a proceeding by the International court of justice, the international law is considering a 'automatic succession' between international organizations.
In such a case, the responsibilities of a dissolved international organization
passes over to the newly founded organization, even in spite of, and beyond
special transfer actions, independent of the will of both organizations, if
the continuation of the functions of the dissolved organization is necessary
for the continuation of international institutions
(supervised, protected and controlled by it) and in particular, of an international state.
The new organization must be able accomplish the same, or at least carry out similar task, and therefore be capable to take over the scope of the dissolved organization.
Prof. Dr. Klein comes to the conclusion that there is a proven right of responsibility
for the League of Nations towards DANZIG, because international protection and
international control were substantial constituents of the status of the FREE
CITY of DANZIG.
According to the regulations applied to the status of Jerusalem and Triest, the United Nations wanted to, and could give attention to similar responsibilities as the League of Nations had done by her organs.
Prof. Dr. F. Klein: "Have responsibilities of the League of Nations in regard to DANZIG passed over to the United Nations Organization?
Up to now, the UNO has neither taken over the "political functions"
of the former League of Nations regarding DANZIG, nor has the UN developed any
initiative on her part.
An automatic transfer of the task left behind by the League of Nation regarding DANZIG is also out of the question.
In the case of DANZIG this means therefore, a DANZIG government-in-exile is quite justified to turn to the United Nations Organization with the request to establish DANZIG'S status as a FREE CITY.
With regard to the question, which part could be taken over by the United Nations
for the re-establishment of the nationality of the FREE CITY of DANZIG , the
international trust system, as is provided by for in chapter # XII of the charter
of the United Nations, should be referred to.
To re-establish the nationality of the FREE CITY of DANZIG, a procedure should be developed which may be particularly applied to the territory of DANZIG, with close reference to chapter # XII of the charter of the United Nations.
Article # 77 of the aforesaid charter contains a list of all the cases to which the international trust system may apply, and mentioned in this case:
a) actually existing mandating territories
b) national territories which have been separated from enemy countries in consequence of the Second World War;
c) national territories which are voluntarily included in the system by the states which are responsible for their administration.
Article # 77 contains a second paragraph the contents of which are as follows:
"The determination of those national territories of the above mentioned groups which will be included in the trust system and of the stipulation which are valid for them remain for a later agreement."
That the stipulation of article # 77, paragraph 1, cannot be directly be applied
to the FREE CITY of DANZIG, is already evident from the formulation.
The designation " mandated territory" was restricted to, and referred to the former German colonies and the former Turkish territories in the near East, which were held in trust in the name of the League of Nations by particular states.
Therefore, the FREE CITY of DANZIG was no mandated territory of the League of Nations. Article # 77, par. 1, sub a) consequently does not refer to DANZIG.
But, by and by, the stipulation contained in art. # 77, par. 1, sub b) can
be applied to the FREE CITY of DANZIG, because, as has been mentioned already,
Danzig did not belong to the national territory of Germany on September 01,
1939, but constituted a separate and independent state.
A state that was not part of the conflict between Poland and Germany, but rather suffered the consequences of that struggle more than anybody else, and has to be considered a victim of aggression caused by this war.
Poland has just as little an entitlement to annex the territory of DANZIG as Germany has, which is none.
In this connection it is important to mention the fact that not even the Federal government of post-war Germany has dared to include the territory of the FREE CITY of DANZIG in her agreement, concerning border regulations, reached with Poland.
The application to article # 77, par. 1 sub c, to the territory of DANZIG is
sound and most imaginable, but experience shows that it is highly unlikely that
the Polish government would be willing to over the illegally annected territory
of the FREE CITY of DANZIG to make possible the reinstatement of DANZIG as a
For this reason it will be necessary to institute special proceedings which will be applied to the territory of DANZIG in analogy to art. # 77, sub c, with the objective to reinstate DANZIG as a FREE CITY and reinstall DANZIG in her own right.
Just the same, in the near past, in Eastern and South Eastern Europe some relaxation in political tensions that have existed in that part of the world for ages.
Therefore, the time is right to put to an end the still existing situation of injustice inflicted on DANZIG, and on her people.
The Berlin Wall has come down and communism has all but disappeared from all of Europe, from Poland in particular, which has embraced Christianity once again.
The Soviet Union is no more, and Russia has renounced her special position as a victorious power by giving up all, and every claim of territorial ambition.
This declaration, as has been spelt out by Mr. Gorbachev is of important significance for DANZIG, because the DANZIG question is still in limbo, remains to be unresolved.
It would therefore be advisable to secure the support of the Russian Federation with the objective as outlined above, for it should be very much in the interest of Russia to put some "peaceful order" to the Baltic region that can only be achieved by means of putting the rule of rightful international law and justice in its proper place.
It is the duty of all unfortunate DANZIGER whom an ill wind, coming out of
Poland, has blown, and scattered to all corners of the Globe, where they now
live in misery and exile,
to try, and apply directly to the United Nations.
The aim of all their efforts must be the reinstatement of DANZIG as a FREE
CITY in the lawful situation that existed on August 31, 1939.
In addition, all measures as have been taken by the occupying powers should be fully assessed as to the great amount of injuries to the interest of the FREE CITY of DANZIG and her unfortunate citizens are concerned.
This means that the FREE CITY of DANZIG has to make a claim on all fronts,
and in addition, initiate a Class action, not only against Germany, but also
against the Republic of Poland, for all the damages that have been caused, by,
or in direct connection and consequences of the horrendous war.
A war that started at DANZIG'S doorstep, and virtually ended there. Leaving the country in ruins, and has caused untold misery, ethnic cleansing, and total devastation to her people.
The German speaking people of the FREE CITY with DANZIG nationality, all of
those who did manage to escape the holocaust of early1945, and especially all
the most unfortunate who had to suffer the brutal eviction from their rightful
home-soil at the hands of Poland from April 1945 onwards, have to be adequately
indemnified for all their losses, damages inflicted, their pains and suffering
causes by Polish brutality.
This is the crux of the matter, the real problem. Poland should be called to account and charged accordingly.
For it is Poland's duty and responsibility, her moral imperative to compensate, for she has, by far, caused the greatest part of injustice that has come to the FREE CITY of DANZIG and her people.