78 YEARS AGO, STALIN ORDERED THE FIRING OF POLISH OFFICERS
On March 5, 1940, the Soviet government decided on a mass killing of Polish prisoners of war. It is reported by Upmp.news with reference to Polish Radio.
Today is 78th anniversary of the signing by the Soviet authorities of the decision to shoot down Polish officers. On March 5, 1940, Stalin and members of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party sentenced to death more than 22,000 Polish prisoners of war imprisoned in September 1939 after the Red Army invaded Poland. For decades, in the Soviet Union, the falsification of historical facts occurred, accusing Hitler’s Germany of being responsible for the Katyn crime.
Only in the late 1980s the first materials about Stalin’s guilt and responsibility were published in the USSR. One of the first data on this topic was presented by the historian of the Russian Academy of Sciences Natalia Lebedeva.
“Officially this was the decision of the Politburo, and unofficially – this is, of course, the initiative and decision of Stalin. In February, he gave such an order, and on March 5 the Politburo approves it and begins the terrible rituals of death when 100-120 people were sent daily to death. The reports of the head of the NKVD of the Tver region have detailed descriptions: how they were summoned, how they were brought to the place of execution, how they threw them on their knees and how they shot at the head. Of course, I emphasize, everything happened directly behind the initiative of Stalin, approved by the whole political bureau”, – said the Russian historian.
Officially, Moscow recognized its responsibility for the crime only in the early 1990’s. A special investigation team was set up to investigate the circumstances of the killing of Polish officers, but in 2004 the investigation was suspended and the reasons for this decision were classified.
So far, Russian law enforcement agencies are preventing the full legal rehabilitation of victims of this crime.