2018 marks 100th anniversary of regaining independence by Poland.
The year 2018 marks 100th anniversary of regaining independence by Poland.
On December 10, 1942, the Polish government-in-exile appealed to signatory states of the United Nations Declaration with a request to prevent crimes being committed against the Jewish population in German-occupied Poland. On the 75th anniversary of the note’s submission, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is presenting an image of the original note, kept in The National Archives in London.
Józef Piłsudski, the architect of independence in 1918 and one of the most outstanding statesmen in Polish history, was born on December 5th 1867 in Zułów, in the Vilnius region. His achievements and political concepts have been a source of inspiration and heated disputes for politicians, publicists and historians in Poland.
Throughout his life Józef Piłsudski fought for, and in defence of, Poland. As the most eminent representative of the “rebellious” generation, he first was in the socialist movement and then was in the ranks of the Riflemen and legionaries, where he strived to put Poland back on the map.
She was the first Polish woman at the Sorbonne, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first woman to be laid to rest at the famous Panthéon in Paris… Maria Skłodowska-Curie, born in Warsaw exactly 150 years ago, remains the most outstanding Polish researcher and global female scientist icon.
September 17th marked the anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland of 1939. A key date in the chronology of the Second World War – marking as it does the USSR's entry into that conflict in collaboration with Hitler's Germany – it slipped by almost unnoticed outside of Polish-speaking circles. Though Poles earnestly declare “Pamiętamy” - the rest of the world, it seems, has forgotten.
Wojtek the bear, who accompanied Anders’s Army in all its battles, was not the only animal to serve in the Polish Armed Forces. Wojtek had a predecessor – a polar bear named Baśka from Murmansk. Her story sheds light on a somewhat forgotten part of the history of Polish military units.
It was the Polish Constitution, adopted on May 3rd 1791, and not the much-lauded French Constitution, that was Europe’s first fundamental law. And it was the second in the world, after the American Constitution of 1787. Moreover, it was implemented using democratic methods and, in contrast to France, without any blood being shed.
Almost every European country boasts of its cavalry. The French are proud of the cuirassiers, the English of the Light Brigade, the Russians of the Cossacks, the Swedes of the Reiters, the Prussians of the Hussars of Death, and the Americans of the 7th Cavalry Regiment of the US Army. And yet none of these formations –apart from maybe the Napoleonic Chevau-légers also dependent on Poles – can hold a candle to Polish hussars.
General Haller’s army had a lot to thank France for: first and foremost its name but also its regulations, machine guns, tanks and legendary blue capes. But its rank and file was Polish, composed of diverse “Polish elements” – from recent subjects of Emperor Franz Joseph to settlers from Brazil.