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1923   (SUNDAY):        GERMANY: Adolf Hitler attends a rally of Nationalists parties in Nuremberg. General Erich Ludendorff, Chief of Staff of the German Army in World War I, announces his support of Adolf Hitler before 100,000 people at Nuremberg. 


1933   (SATURDAY):        INTERNATIONAL: A pact of friendship, nonaggression, and neutrality between Italy and the U.S.S.R. was signed.  (Jack Mirst flight of the Grumman XF4F-2 Wildcat. (Ron Babuka)

September 2nd, 1939 (SATURDAY)

UNITED KINGDOM: The British radar research centre at Bawdsey Manor, on the east coast, receives orders to disperse to scattered locations on the west coast. (Cris Wetton)

By 4.30 p.m. Poland has been at war for 36 hours, but no reply has been received in London from Berlin. In cabinet, Neville Chamberlain reads out a message from the French government: they want 48 hours more delay. At 6 p.m. Halifax calls Ciano and Parliament meets 'in troubled silence'. At 7.30 p.m. a call is made from the Cabinet to Édouard Daladier the French Prime Minister, resulting in their agreement to restate Britain's position to Germany without a time limit. At 7.44 p.m. Chamberlain relays this to the House of Commons, where it is received as half-hearted: Arthur Greenwood demands 'no more devices'. A violent thunderstorm is raging over England, and a deputation from the House of Commons confronts Chamberlain demanding no further delay. 'Right, gentlemen,' the Prime Minister answers. 'This means war.' As he speaks a great clap of thunder shakes the building.

Lord Halifax calls Paris to establish a time limit; and at 10.30 p.m. Chamberlain's peacetime Cabinet begins its final meeting. An absolute ultimatum will be sent to Germany.

Dr. Fritz Hesse, Press Councillor to the German Embassy in London, comes to Sir Horace Wilson, Chamberlain's chief advisor, with an invitation from Ribbentrop for a secret meeting, 'heart to heart'. Wilson refuses, but repeats that if Germany withdraws from Poland, bygones will be bygones.

The IRA launch a series of attacks on individual soldiers in the British Territorial Army.

Churchill, expecting at any minute to be invited to join the War Cabinet, has waited all day a message from Chamberlain. He sleeps with a pistol under his pillow and a guard on his door.

The last football matches are played. Some kick off late anticipating crowd and traffic problems. 
On the last day of play Blackpool head the league. (72)


Georges Bonnet, the French Foreign Minister contacts Ciano to try and arrange a symbolic German withdrawal. Ciano throws the message into the waste-paper basket before returning to bed.

Paris: Daladier addresses the Chamber of Deputies. (Gene Hanson)

The RAF sends ten squadrons of Fairey Battle light bombers to France.

At 8.50 p.m. Ribbentrop informs Attolico that there will be no German withdrawal from Poland.

Chancellor Adolf Hitler accepts Italian Premier Benito Mussolini's proposal for a conference if the French and British notes of 1 September  were not ultimatums and if he was allowed a 24 hour grace period. Britain and France both deny that the warnings  were ultimatums; France approves the grace period in principle; Britain takes the  grace period into consultation, said and armistice was insufficient, and evacuation of German troops must precede a conference.  

Germany announces that it will respect Norwegian neutrality.

POLAND: General Gerd von Rundstedt's Army Group South (Heeresgruppe Süd) troops have crossed the River Warta, in Poland, in numerous places. The German Luftwaffe has wreaked havoc in the rear areas of the Polish armed forces. The far forward placement of most Polish regular forces has placed the swift moving German columns in their rear areas.

30 Polish towns and cities are bombed with more than 1500 casualties.

In the disputed Corridor, two Polish infantry divisions and the Pomorze cavalry brigade are cut off by the German XIX corps of the 4th Army and almost wiped out.

Polish submarine ORP Wilk is damaged by German depth charges.

     Poland asks the British and French to provide aid.  .

U.S.S.R.: Pravda features Hitler's speech holding the Poles responsible for the war. (Mike Yared)

ITALY: 9.30 p.m. Sir Percy Loraine calls London from Rome to say that Mussolini is abandoning his efforts for peace.

GIBRALTAR: The first British convoy of the war leaves for Cape Town

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