September 27, 2018




The Battle of Kircholm was one of the major battles of the Polish-Swedish War, fought on September 27, 1605. The Polish Winged Hussars, a powerful shock force of the cavalry of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth numbered only 3,600 men, faced the imposing armies of Charles IX of Sweden whose forces numbered 10,868 men, and 11 cannons, and had the backing of thousands of German and Dutch mercenaries and several hundred Scots. Despite the overwhelming numbers, the Polish Hussars won the battle in virtually 20 minutes of fighting, forcing the Swedish cavalry to retreat. Polish casualties were 100 killed and 200 wounded. The Swedish contingent casualties were 7,600 to 8,000 killed, captured and disbursed. The Hussars earned a reputation for being invincible warriors, and ruled the battlefields of Europe for over 200 years.


The Battle of Władypol was fought by Polish armed forces against the Soviets during the joint-invasion of  Poland by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. The Polish 26th Cavalry Regiment succeeded in repelling the Soviet cavalry and tank units. And a larger Soviet force approaching the area of Chliple was stopped by the forces of the 25th Polish Cavalry and the 9th Mounted Artillery Regiment. Subsequently, the Polish force captured Chliple and resisted Soviet attacks just long enough for the rest of the column to pass further south. But the Polish artillery units ran out of ammunition, and had to destroy their guns or have them fall into enemy hands.  Polish forces were ordered by General Anders to disperse and try to break through Soviet units, however during the chaotic withdrawal, about 1,500 Polish troops were captured by the Soviets.

The first Polish resistance movement, the Service for Poland's Victory (SZP) was created by the order of General Juliusz Rómmel when the siege of Warsaw was nearing its end.  Its mission was the continuation of armed struggle to liberate Poland along the pre-war borders of the Second Polish Republic, the recreation and reorganization of the Polish army and the establishment of the secret Polish State, the underground government.  In November 1939, the SZP was renamed Union of Armed Struggle (ZWZ).


The Tripartite Pact was a military alliance signed in Berlin on September 27, 1940 between Germany, Italy and Japan. The agreement also known as the Berlin Pact was eventually joined by Hungary on November 20, 1940;  by Romania  on November 23, 1940; by Slovakia (the German client state) on November 24, 1940; by Bulgaria on March 1, 1941 and by Yugoslavia on March 25, 1941.  Yugoslavia's accession provoked a coup d'état in Belgrade shortly thereafter. Italy and Germany then responded by invading Yugoslavia and partitioning the country. As a result, the client state became known as the Independent State of Croatia which signed the pact the pact on June 15, 1941.


The Provisional Committee to Aid Jews, founded by Zofia Kossak-Szczucka and Wanda Krahelska-Filipowicz, consisted of Polish democratic Catholic activists associated with the Front Odrodzenia Polski, the Polska Organizacja Demokratyczna, the Związek Syndykalistów Polskich and the PPS-WRN.  The Committee was financed partly by the Department of Social Services of the Polish Government In Exile. Soon after its inception, it was able to provide assistance to about 180 persons within a very short time. It was the direct predecessor to Żegota, the underground Council to Aid Jews.  The Provisional Committee was the first official institution in modern Polish history in which Polish and Jewish organizations worked together in an atmosphere of mutual trust and goodwill.  The organizations that participated represented a wide cross section of political and socioeconomic platforms. One of its vice-presidents was a member of Bund, Leon Feiner, and its secretary was Adolf Berman, who represented Zionist organizations. Among its Polish members was Professor Wladyslaw Bartoszewski, who was famous for co-founding Zegota, and for having served as Polands Minister of Foreign Affairs through most of 1995.


Soviet Air Drops over Warsaw.  From September 27 to 28, 1944, the Soviet Union flew air drop missions over Warsaw, dropping about a total of 130 tons of supplies and weapons, but initially the cargo was dropped from the planes without parachutes resulting in total destruction or damage of materiels.  In an appeal to help Warsaw, Churchill telephoned the United States Strategic Air Forces in Europe to request a second drop mission to Warsaw, in response to the urgent appeals by the Polish Prime Minister in Exile, Stanislaw Mikolajczyk.  President Roosevelt even made the same request, however Stalin ignored these appeals, formally refused on October 2, 1944.

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