Hobby Master HG4601 German Sd. Kfz. 121 PzKpfw II Ausf. C Light Tank - Panzer Regiment 35, 4.Panzer Division, Poland, 1939 (1:72 Scale)
"If the tank succeeds, then victory follows."
- Major-General Heinz Guderian, "Achtung Panzer!"
Originally identified as the '2cm MG Panzerwagen', the PzKpfw II light tank was designed to supplement the PzKpfw I by providing an automatic weapon capable of firing both a high explosive round and an armor piercing round. The design period was very short: the initial order for a tank design in the 10-ton class was issued by the Waffenamt in July 1934, and the first complete soft steel prototype was put through its paces in October 1935. Unfortunately, many of the teething problems had not been worked out when rapid expansion of the panzerwaffe and international politics forced the decision to order a comparatively large number of PzKpfw IIs. First issued to Panzer units in the spring of 1936, the PzKpfw II was armed with a 2cm KwK L/55 gun and was crewed by three men.
Pictured here is a 1:72 scale replica of a German Sd. Kfz. 121 PzKpfw II Ausf. C light tank that was attached to Panzer Regiment 35, 4.Panzer Division, then participating in the invasion of Poland during September 1939.
Length: 2-1/2 inches
Width: 1-1/4 inches
Release Date: November 2010
Historical Account: "Panzers East" - The Invasion of Poland, also known as the September Campaign or 1939 Defensive War in Poland and the Poland Campaign (German: Polenfeldzug) in Germany, was an invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, and a small Slovak contingent that marked the start of World War II. The invasion began on September 1st, 1939, one week after the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, and ended October 6th, 1939 with Germany and the Soviet Union dividing and annexing the whole of Poland.
The day after the Gleiwitz incident, German forces invaded Poland from the north, south, and west. As the Germans advanced, Polish forces withdrew from their forward bases of operation close to the Polish-German border to more established lines of defense to the east. After the mid-September Polish defeat in the Battle of the Bzura, the Germans gained an undisputed advantage. Polish forces then withdrew to the southeast where they prepared for a long defense of the Romanian Bridgehead and awaited expected French and British support and relief.
The Soviet Red Army's invasion of the Kresy on September 17th, in accordance with a secret protocol of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, rendered the Polish plan of defense obsolete. Facing a second front, the Polish government concluded the defense of the Romanian Bridgehead was no longer feasible and ordered an emergency evacuation of all troops to neutral Romania. On October 6th, following the Polish defeat at the Battle of Kock, German and Soviet Union forces gained full control over Poland. The success of the invasion marked the end of the Second Polish Republic, though Poland never formally surrendered.
On October 8th, Germany directly annexed western Poland and the former Free City of Danzig and placed the remaining block of territory under administration of the newly established General Government. The Soviet Union immediately started a campaign of sovietization of the newly acquired areas. This included staged elections, the results of which were used to legitimize the Soviet Union's annexation of eastern Poland. In the aftermath of the invasion, a collective of underground resistance organizations formed the Polish Underground State within the territory of the former Polish state. Many of the military exiles that managed to escape Poland subsequently joined the Polish Armed Forces in the West, an armed force loyal to the Polish government in exile.