Opening scene shows British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, at the airport, having just returned from the Munich conference where Britain and France acquiesed to Nazi Germany's annexation of the Sudetenlands and part of Czechoslovakia. He holds up copy of the agreement signed by Chancellor Adolf Hitler as symbolic of British and German determination never to wage war against each other again. Crowd cheers. Newspaper poster quotes Chamberlain's statement: "Peace in Our Time." Newspaper headlines about the Agreement. Map shows Nazi encrouchment on Czechoslovakia. In violation of the Munich agreement, German forces roll into Czechoslovakia, on March 14, 1939. Local residents give Nazi salute from sidewalks. Animated map shows area of German occupation with Poland next. Prime Minister Chamberlain telling an audience that a threat to Polish independence would start a general conflagration involving Britain. Hitler attending a formal occasion. Star shown atop a building in Moscow, Russia. British, French and German military missions arriving at airport to confer with Soviets. Soviet foreign minister Vyacheslav Molotov shakes hands wih German foreign minister Joachim von Ribbentrop. August 23, 1939 Newspaper headline reads: "Russo-German Pact Signed." German and Russian diplomats sit at a table. Joseph Stalin and Molotov reviewing troops on parade in Red Square.
In opening scene, Adolf Hitler is addresssing the Bundestag in Berlin.
Animated map shows Berlin, Warsaw, and higlights Danzig and the Polish corridor. Newspaper headline reads 'Poles will fight for Danzig.' A Polish officer addressing recruits. Polish women and children watching as they march off. Polish women and old men and youths digging trench fortifications. Animated map shows Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia. Map shows Vistula River and tributaries. Map illustrates various Polish defense options. Map illustrates Nazi plan to launch pincer movements around the Polish defenses. Views of German forces marshalling near the Polish border in August, 1939.Polish infantry moving in horse-drawn wagons and supported by old fashioned horse cavalry. Film illustrates dramatic difference in military might, contrasting German armor, aircraft,and numbers to that of Poland. Closeup of German airmen loading bomb under their aircraft. German heavy artillery and siege mortar firing. A German Panzer I light tank charging through snow. (Inappropriate edit insert.) Motorized German forces seen entering Poland on September 1st, 1939. A German Heinkel HE 111 bomber taking off toward the camera. Several Junkers Ju 87 Stuka dive bombers taking off. German aircraft strafing Polish aircraft on an airbase. Aircraft exploding on the ground. A Dornier Do 17 bomber maneuvering. More views from German aircraft strafing Polish aircraft on the ground. A formation of He 111 bombers in flight. Gunner firing from blister in bomber. Two Polish P50A fighter planes being fired upon and exploding in the air. A German Me Bf 109 photographed from an inidentified aircraft as it maneuvers nearby. An Me Bf 109 firing its guns and flying through white smoke. A Polish P50 streaming black smoke. Another gunner in bomber firing and hitting a Polish P-50. An aircraft crashing in flames. More He 111 bombers. glimpse of bombardier in one. Bombs striking Polish bridges, roads, railroads, etc. Closeup of Stuka dive bomber starting dive. View as it dives down on target. Polish civilians fleeing in a field. A stuka diving as children watch from hiding places. Bombs bursting near railroad. Closeup of German airman in cockpit. Polish cavalry charging. A German tank tows a field artillery piece across a shallow river, A destroyed bridge in background. A Panzer I light tank emerges from the stream. German soldiers racing across the Vistula River in long powered boats. Series of maps show situation from September 5th as Germans advance and Poles retreat, ending with encirclement of Warsaw and defeat of Polish forces. Scenes of Warsaw, encircled and bombarded, but not yet fallen. Firemen respond to bombing and shelling. Buildings crumble. Germans bombard with 142mm Howitzers. Gunners loading and firing them.. Scenes of destruction from shelling. A factory chimney falls. Hitler at the front observing bombardment. Women and children seek shelter in the city. Dead horses in streets. September 27th Warsaw capitulates and German troops occupy it. Map shows Polish forces still resist in the Westerplatte fortress. German battleship, Schleswig-Holstein, firing her guns. Defenders raise white flag on October 1st, 1939. Polish prisoners marching away (one seen barefoot). Polish Nazi collaborator points out persons for arrest. Poles lined up by a pit for execution. German machine gunners firing. Glimpse of Nazi Heinrich Himmler. Bodies of executed. Polish women mourning the dead. Closeups of Polish women, children and old man. A woman throws fuel on a funeral pyre.Closeups of mourning women and girls. Hitler's Ju 52 transport plane takes off. Inside he chats with some military passengers. Profile of Hitler silhouetted against the sky and clouds. He looks out at the still burning city of Warsaw. Elements of the Russian army entering Poland and greeted by a German officer. View of British bombers flying to bomb German warships in the Kiel canal. German sailors rush to battle stations and fire anti-aircraft gun. Bombs falling on the ships.
Czech Jews fleeing Czechoslovakia during World War 2. They board a plane of Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij or KLM (Dutch Airlines). The majority of passengers are women and small children. A woman, from the plane waves to her relatives standing at the terminal building. Crowd outside the terminal building and ticketing office. Boys and girls wave and smile as they enter the tarmac area and approach the parked aircraft. The Pilot of the plane looks from the cockpit.The same plane brought such a group to Croydon Airport London in January 1939
Animated map illustrates Nazi takeover of Czechoslovakia in 1939. St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City. Italian Destroyer, RN Camicia Nera, in Albanian harbor, during Italian invasion. Italian troops marching along Albanian pier. Italian troops entering Albania on bicycles; in trucks;and L3 tankettes. President Franklin Roosevelt writing letters to Hitler and Mussolini, requesting them to respect independence of 33 European countries. Hitler addressing the Bundestag making fun of Roosevelt's letter, and delegates laughing and applauding. Goering and Goebels are seen present.
Japanese troops parade for Emperor Hirohito, mounted upon a white horse. Italian troops goosestep and German troops goosestep on parade. View of Austrian town with snow-covered Alps mountains in background as German troops enter Austria on March 13, 1938 during the Anschluss. Local citizens welcome them, displaying swastika flags and giving Nazi straight arm salutes. Troops, military vehicles, tanks, motorcycles, and horse-drawn artillery comprise the German invading force. Shifts to Spain, where war torn buildings reflect effects of German and Italian intervention during the Spanish Civil War. A donkey standing near field artillery piece. Artillery being fired from an urban park in Spain. Artilleryman using a range finder. German gun crew with heavy artillery piece. Soldiers wearing Adrian steel helmets, firing a two-wheeled water-cooled machine gun. Spanish carrying wounded on stretcher. Spanish civilians inadvertently slain during civil war conflict. Starving dog walking in street. Huge poster of Francisco Franco and view of him on reviewing stand saluting marching Nationalist troops. Repeat of Hirohito reviewing troops and Italian and German troops goosestep. Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini stand together in open car heading to Fuhrerbau in Munich, Germany, for signing of Agreement between Germany, Italy, Britain, and France in 1938.Neville Chamberlain, and Edouard Daladier riding in car to Fuhrerbau. Views of the principals signing the accords. Hermann Goering seen. In Italy, Mussolini waves to cheering crowd from balcony. German troops enter Sudetenland (Czechoslovakia) greeted by joyous ethnic German inhabitants.German military brass band playing in open trucks. Signpost pointing to Prag; Eger; Joachimsta; and Komotau. German troops marching into Prague.Italian Destroyer in port, as Italy invades Albania in 1939. An Italian L3/33 tankette being unloaded from a ship.Bicycle troops riding in Albania. German gun position overlooking river. Hitler at Reichstag mocks Roosevelt plea to stop invasions.
Crowd greets Adolf Hitler upon his return from Prague, Czechoslovakia, where he signed a declaration establishing the Nazi Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. The scene shows a swaying crowd at night, outside a hotel. Hitler and Hermann Goering appear on the hotel balcony, which is festooned with a garland of greens. Four candles appear in each window of their section of the hotel.