23 Aug 1939
  • Albert Forster became the State President of the Free City of Danzig. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Joachim von Ribbentrop and the German delegation arrived aboard two Condor aircraft at Moscow, Russia and met Joseph Stalin and Vyacheslav Molotov in two sessions, with the second session going late into the night and resulting in the signing of the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. It eliminated the possibility of Soviet Union allying with the western powers; in addition, a secret clause effectively set the plans for a partition of Poland. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • Italy sent a message to Germany noting that when the two nations negotiated the Pact of Steel, article 3, which obliged one nation to go to join in any war the other nation engaged in, the two had the understanding that Italy would not be ready for war until 1943. Should Germany invade Poland before 1942, Italy would not be ready. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • France partially mobilized its military to bolster its border defenses. ww2dbase [CPC]
Danzig
  • Albert Forster was appointed by the German government as the State President of the Free City of Danzig. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Germany
  • U-27 departed Wilhelmshaven, Germany for her first and only war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Erwin Rommel was promoted to the rank of major general and was posted to the Staff of the Adolf Hitler's Headquarters, to be responsible again for Hitler's safety. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC, AC]
United Kingdom
  • Captain F. E. P. Hutton was named the commanding officer of HMS Hermes, relieving Captain G. Fraser. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • HMS Kelly was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Photo(s) dated 23 Aug 1939
Molotov signing the German-Soviet non-aggression pact, Moscow, Russia, 23 Aug 1939; Shaposhnikov, Ribbentrop, and Stalin in back rowRibbentrop signing the German-Soviet non-aggression pact, Moscow, Russia, 23 Aug 1939, photo 1 of 3; Shaposhnikov, Molotov, and Stalin in back rowRibbentrop signing the German-Soviet non-aggression pact, Moscow, Russia, 23 Aug 1939, photo 2 of 3; Molotov and Stalin in back rowRibbentrop signing the German-Soviet non-aggression pact, Moscow, Russia, 23 Aug 1939, photo 3 of 3; Boris Shaposhnikov and Joseph Stalin in back row
See all photos dated 23 Aug 1939

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis




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Famous WW2 Quote
"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You win the war by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country!"

George Patton, 31 May 1944