Disinfo: The promotion of the so-called Katyn affair, falsely attributed to NKVD, was approved by Hitler


The propaganda promotion of the so-called Katyn affair was approved by Adolf Hitler himself,

In 1943, near the small village of Katyn, 14 kilometers to the west of Smolensk, a mass grave of executed Polish prisoners of war was discovered in the Kozi Gory tract. An end has not yet been put to this tragic story. On April 13, Poland intends to conduct another anti-Russian campaign dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the Katyn crime.

Katyn was the work of the Nazis, and not the Stalinist leadership of the NKVD. This version, in fact, is confirmed by the verdict of the Nuremberg tribunal.

The Nuremberg International Military Tribunal indicted Herman Goering, number two, and Alfred Jodl, acting chief of the Wehrmacht’s High Command, for the Katyn crime. These are documented facts.


Recurrent historical whataboutism "Anti-Katyn" campaign intended to obscure events surrounding the Katyn massacre of 1940, when approximately 22,000 Polish citizens were murdered by the Soviet NKVD on the orders of Joseph Stalin. The attempts continue even when Russian authorities fully recognised the USSR's responsibility at official level.

By the decision of the President of Russia from April 28th 2010, electronic copies of documents about Katyn have been posted on the official website of the Federal Archival Agency.  The collection of documents includes the "Memorandum of the People's Commissar of Internal Affairs of the USSR L.P. Beria to I.V. Stalin with a proposal to entrust the NKVD of the USSR to consider to study in a special manner cases against Polish citizens held in prison camps of the NKVD of the USSR and prisons in the western regions of Ukraine and Belarus" from March 5th 1940. The verdict  execution, can be read on the 3rd page of the document, approved by Stalin. "Study in a special manner" is the term meaning the absence of a proper trial, in use during Stalin's purges. The Katyn crime was first recognised by the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990. Russian Human Rights activists have been working since 1989 in order to collect full documentation, to pass Polish victims' descendants requests to the Russian authorities and to edit the complete list of Polish citizens subjected to repressions in the USSR, including in Katyn in 1940.

The Nuremberg International Military Tribunal did not indict German Nazi defendants for this crime, nor, therefore, sentenced them for it.

See other recent disinformation cases about "Poland to cause start of the world war II", and more cases about about Katyn massacre.


  • Reported in: Issue187
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 05/03/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Poland
  • Keywords: Katyn, WWII


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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