WWII Anniversary: The War’s Outbreak


Commemorative ceremonies took place across Europe in remembrance of the 75th anniversary of the Second World War’s outbreak. See how the official “war’s outbreak” was announced seven-and-a-half decades ago.

A vintage news reel way back from 1939 tells how the Second World war’s outbreak was announced in Britain.

The archived footage starts off with the words: The fateful hour has struck. Germany and Britain are at war.

According history chronology, Britain entered the war formally on the 3rd of September, 1939, at exactly 11 o’clock  in the morning. It was a dispirited Neville Chamberlain who informed the masses that London had already asserted to Berlin its terms. If the latter wouldn’t pledge to pull out its troop from invading Poland, then, war would ensue.

The then British Prime Minister countinued on with saying that Germany had not given that said pledge Britain was asking for, therefore, the country was officially at war against the former.

75th Year Commemorations

Now, 75 years after the Second World War’s outbreak, the countries involved held their own celebrations in remembrance of the event.

In Poland, both the leaders of the country and Germany met at Westerplatte, the small peninsula just near the Polish city of Gdansk, where the first shots of WWII were fired. It was here that the German battleship, Schleswig-Holstein, fired at the peninsula’s garrison.

Additionally, German and Polish bishops also gathered in the small, now Polish town of Gliwice for the 75th anniversary of the Second World War’s outbreak. Here, the bishops commemorated the staged raid Hitler did on the town’s German radio station with supposedly Pole soldiers or rebels just so he could justify the invasion he did a day after the so-called attack. Two days later, Britain and France, in a pledge to support Poland, declared war against the invading nation.

The town, once part of Germany, was since then given to Poland after the defeat of the Third Reich.

Heziel Pitogo

Heziel Pitogo is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE