Podole in World War II
Regiment KOP "Czortkow" under the command of col. M. Kotarby, with battalions "Borszczow", "Kopyczynce" and "Sklat" plus incomplete cavalry squadrons from Podwolczyskach and Husiatyn fought a short engagement with the invading Soviets just before 14:00 hrs on 17/09/1939. In the early hours two Soviet tanks were destroyed in the region of "Borszczow". By the late afternoon all elements of KOP had to leave Czortkow. Within the city itself there was no actual fighting. The only soldiers left in Czortkow were officers of the administration. At around midday capt. Marzys, the adjutant of KOP "Podole" organised some sort of defence around the bridge on the river Dniestr in the town of Ustieczko
Sniatyn and Kolomyja were taken by the Soviets at the earliest on the 19/09, quite possibly they were taken on the 19.09. This confirms that the Soviets didn't have complete control of the region until 19.09.
At about 17:00 on the 17/09 the Soviets took Tarnopol, the Polish garrison surrendered almost without a fight. The soldiers were disarmed and sent to prison camps. The story of the officers is a different one, they too were disarmed and sent into the interior of Soviet Russia, most of them found their way to the many execution sites that were spread through out Soviet Russia. Some of them found their way to Katyn forest.
In Nadwornia the Soviets came on the 22/09, the whole administration of the city had by then been taken over by the local Jews, who displayed their animosity towards the Poles and forcibly evicted the previous town administration.
This is the tragic moment when a Polish cavalry squadron was getting closer to the Rumanian border
The task of patrolling has finished, and this tragic day will stay forever in our memories. We came to the border on foot, ulhans leading their horses and everyone being very quiet. All our thoughts were turning towards our homes and families. This tragic feeling was felt by all even more when the first border post came into view. Some kneeled and kissed this Polish ground, some took a handful of it and placed it in small sacks and hung it around their necks. In this frame of mind did our squadron leave the border of it's homeland.
On 4th July the Germans murder the profesors and students of Lwow, approximatley 100 persons