June 18, 2018

JUNE 18 - DAILY CHRONICLES OF HISTORY

JUNE 18

1945

Trial of the 16:  Between June 18 and 21, 1945, sixteen Polish Officers of the Armia Krajowa, Polish Home Army, were subjected to a mock Soviet trial on falsified charges. They were accused of gathering intelligence and sabotage against the Soviet Union, propaganda against the Soviet Union, fighting against the Red Army, membership in an underground organization, and collaborating with Nazi Germany.(Note:  The vast majority of Poles, the Polish Government In Exile, and Polish military never collaborated with the Nazis, and fought against the Nazis throughout the war.) Immediately after the arrest of all the leaders, the Polish Government in Exile dispatched a letter of protest to Washington and London demanding their release. Stalin declared that the protest was a bluff by the “Fascist Polish government” but finally admitted that the leaders were arrested. Stalin then told American envoy Harry Hopkins that “there is no point in linking the case of the Trial of the Sixteen with the support for the Soviet-backed government of Poland because the sentences will not be high.”  Both British and American governments shared this view.


1949

Jarosław Kaczyński (dob) was the 13th Prime Minister of Poland from July 14, 2006 to November 16, 2007. He was the leader of the Law and Justice Party. The party was founded in 2001 by the Kaczyński twins, Lech and Jarosław, and was formed from part of the Solidarity Electoral Action (AWS), with the Christian democratic Centre Agreement forming the new party's core.   The party won the 2005 election, while Lech Kaczyński won the presidency. Jarosław served as Prime Minister. In the 2007 parliamentary elections, Law and Justice finished a distant second behind pro-European Christian-democratic and conservative liberal Civic Platform. Kaczyński was succeeded as prime minister by Donald Tusk (after which Kaczyński remained chairman of Law and Justice, becoming leader of the opposition).  On April 10, 2010, Lech Kaczynski and many leading members of government and military were killed in a plane crash near Smolensk, Russia. The delegation was on route to attend a commemoration of the victims of the Katyn Massacre who were massacred near Smolensk, Russia during World War II.  Following the death of his brother, Jaroslaw announced that he would run in the 2010 presidential elections, but was defeated by Bronisław Komorowski by a small margin.




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