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General Government


Fot. Aleksandra Popiołek-Janiec, Anna Zych
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After cooperative, along with russians invasion of Poland in September 1939 and after the division of Polish lands between these invaders, Germans divided their loot into two parts. the lands, which they considered because of variety of reasons, mainly historical, as their own, they embodied directly to the reich. Using the rest of them they created General Government with its capital in Krakow. this decision meant that, in contrast to other conquered territories, Germany will not create here a remnant of the Polish state with a puppet government, as it was in the case of Norway, France and Czechoslovakia, but they will give a direct occupation to the Polish territories. That decision
could come out of two premises: fear of the Polish resistance and believe that within Poles they will not find elites ready to collaborate. In addition to securing peace in this area, General Government was also kind of an example of German colonialism, and this area like a province in rome was meant to be a reservoir of cheap labour.
It is also worth to mention, that the direct supervision of these areas was a tool to facilitate the extermination of the Jews in the future, whose concentration in this terrain was the largest in Europe. the decision of establishing the General Government had also intended to humiliate the defeated Poles, who were taken away not only statehood and freedom, but also deprived of all national symbols. thus, Cracow has been selected selected as the capital of GG, Wawel was made to be the seat of the governor. the internal administration was changed and the fight with Polish culture started. Also the mechanism for managing this area resembled the colonial model. The governor became the lord of the life and death, and his decisions were definite. It is worth to mention the fact, that Hans Frank, performing this function during all the time of the existence of the General Government is still perceived as one of the symbols of German atrocities and crimes.

Members of the group: Anna Zych, Aleksandra Popiołek-Janiec, Anna Tomaszewska, Mariusz Kucharek, Cyprian Brytan, Jakub Fil

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