POLISH GREATNESS TRAFFIC

May 20, 2018

MAY 20 - DAILY CHRONICLES OF HISTORY

MAY 20

1881

Wladyslaw Sikorski (dob) was a Polish military and political leader. In WW2 he was appointed  Commander in Chief and General Inspector of the Polish Armed Forces. He also held the position of the Polish Minister of Military Affairs, thus cementing full control over the Polish military during the war. In addition he was the 1st Prime Minister of the Polish-Government-In-Exile, from September 39, 1939.   Even with its territory occupied by Germany and the Soviet Union,  Poland still commanded substantial armed forces: the Polish Navy had sailed to Britain, and hundreds of thousands of Polish troops had escaped via Romania and Hungary or across the Baltic Sea. These routes would be used frequently until the end of the war by both interned soldiers, Polish underground, and volunteers from Poland, who called themselves "Sikorski's tourists". They embarked on treacherous journeys, risking capture and imprisonment in concentration camps, or execution,  if caught by the Germans or their allies. The new Polish Army was getting a steady flow of recruits in France, and when France fell to Hitler, many of them escaped to Britain.  Even in Poland there was a large resistance movement. Sikorski had founded the  Zwiazek Walki Zbrojnej (Union of Armed Struggle), which later became Armia Krajowa (Home Army). Sikorski also created the Government Delegation of Poland, to supervise the Secret Polish Underground State in occupied Poland. Poland had the largest resistance movement of any occupied country in Europe, and were the fourth largest Ally of the war.   On July 4, 1943, General Sikorski was killed in a tragic plane crash. Suspicions still prevail to this day of the possibility of Russian conspiracy.


1938

Romanian prime minister, Patriarch Miron Cristea, arrived in Poland. (Note: Cristea visited Poland, with which Romania had an alliance and with which it tried to create a neutral block between Nazi Germany and the USSR.  Cristea was an Austro-Hungarian-born Romanian cleric and politician.   Cristea, a bishop in Hungary was elected Metropolitan-Primate of the Orthodox Church of the newly unified Greater Romania in 1919. As the Church was raised to a rank of Patriarchate, Miron Cristea was enthroned as the first Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church in 1925. In 1938 he served as  Prime Minister until his death in March 1939.  In his tenure as Patriarch, Cristea supported tolerance towards the Jews.  In 1928 he appealed to Romanian students to live the Golden Rule and he expressed sorrow for attacks and profanations of synagogues.



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