During the spring of 1940, units of the Soviet secret police (NKVD) executed nearly 22,000 Polish POWs and prisoners at five locations. The bloodiest massacre took place at Katyn Forest.
The aim of the bloodshed was to decapitate the Polish intelligentsia and to prevent setting up an effective future Polish military or resistance force.
Soviet leaders refuted the accusations, blaming the Nazis for executing the captivated Poles in the summer of 1941. The official Soviet opinion on the issue was changed only in 1990.
After studying the case, American Navy Lieutenant Commander George Earle, assigned by President Roosevelt to write a report on the massacre in 1944, found the Soviets guilty. Insisting on publishing the truth he was “expelled” to American Samoa.
Stalin organized 10 show trials to prove the responsibility of the Germans. Soviets hanged several dozens of German soldiers accused of taking part in the massacre.
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