Katyn: Politics, Massacre, Morality


After the the Soviet Union occupied Eastern Poland in September 1939, tens of thousands of Polish professional military officers and reservists, policemen, landowners, lawyers, doctors, educators, and civil servants—the political, social and intellectual elite of the area—were arrested. In the spring of 1940, the Soviet Communist Party Politburo ordered the execution of some 22,000 of those prisoners.

The mass shootings, some of them carried out in the spring of 1940 in the Katyn forest near the Russian city of Smolensk, are remembered as the Katyn Forest Massacre. The touring exhibition, produced by Poland’s Council for the Protection of the Memory of Struggle and Martyrdom, chronicles the genocide of Poland’s elites carried out by the Soviet security service and attempts by communist leaders to bury, for half a century, the truth about this crime against humanity.


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