August 24, 1939 - Forecast: Dark. Very Dark.

News of this day in 1939 - Paris Radio and Berlin Radio reports on the newly signed German-Russian non-Aggression Pact. War fears spreading throughout Europe. Propaganda regarding Poland. A nervous day.


This day in 1939 was uneasy and with good reason. It was announced a non-aggression pact had been signed in Moscow between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union, clearing the way for an invasion of Poland and a Soviet invasion of Finland (implied though not stated).

Here are two separate shortwave newscasts, both in English. One from Radio Berlin (top player) and the other from Paris Radio (bottom player) from August 24, 1939. Slightly before on-the-spot coverage, the newscasts are confined to amazingly low-key reports with lots of paper shuffling. The German reports are sprinkled with numerous anti-Polish sentiments and all around, you wouldn't necessarily suspect war would be breaking out in a matter of days.

The French news is a little difficult to hear at times, but the flavor and intent are still apparent. Both reports end rather abruptly with no hint of alarm or urgings to stay tuned for further developments. Just silence.

History on a matter-of-fact basis for this August 24th.

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