Polish National Day of Memory of Cursed Soldiers

You might not be aware of it, but a Polish national holiday is nearing – on the 1st March, Poland celebrates the memory of the Damned Soldiers, or Cursed Soldiers as they are also called (pl. “Żołnierze wyklęci”) – the people who stood against communism and formed resistance to protect Polish independence and freedom after World War II.

The holiday was only recently announced, in 2010, although the idea was presented in 2009 by the combatants of WWII and their descendants. The date of 1st March was chosen as a symbolic reminder – on this day in 1951 an execution of seven members of a Polish resistance organization “Freedom and Independence”, who were the last coordinators of the fight against soviet occupation, was carried out.

Polish National Day of Memory of Cursed Soldiers

Just as America has a long history of fighting for freedom, so does Poland. During the first years after the World War II, Polish nation was shattered and confused, struggling to shed its image as the post-war battlefield, and the Soviet Union saw that as an opportunity to take control of the country. The political situation made it difficult for Poles to oppose, and though they tried, Poland became another of Eastern Europe’s communist countries soon enough. It remained so until the late eighties – the situation only changed with the formation of an independent trade union “Solidarity” in 1989 which organized a widespread wave of strikes that finally led to the election of the first non-communist President of Poland, Lech Wałęsa.

The decades that preceeded these events, though, were difficult in the extreme. Although communism brought some improvement to standards of living, it was also responsible for economic depression and severe limitations in freedom of speech, belief and action. This led to many rebellious acts of the citizens of Poland, making the communist era the most socially disturbed period in the recent history of Poland. Not only did individual people try to fight the repression in their everyday life, but there were also organisations devoted to overcoming the Stalinist government and rebuilding free Poland, both politically, and by force. Among them, there was Freedom and Independence (Wolność i Niezawisłość), National Armed Forces (Narodowe Siły Zbrojne), National Military Union (Narodowe Zjednoczenie Wojskowe), and the Underground Polish Army (Konspiracyjne Wojsko Polskie). Being a threat to the system, they were hunted by the officials, and member was a death sentence; even talking about these organisations was sure to get you in trouble. Most of the Polish anti-communist groups ceased to exist in the late 1940s or 1950s, hunted down by Ministry of Public Security services and NKVD assassination squads.

Now, luckily, this is not an issue. Poland had regained its freedom, and therefore is proud to remember the difficult times when the citizens had rebelled against the enemy and their resolve stayed strong regardless of the consequences. That is why the National Day of Memory of Cursed Soldiers was established – in honor of those who weren’t afraid to seek freedom, and fight for it.
If you’d like a World War 2-themed trip, you can count on us, as we have a variety of them in offer. Or, if you’d like a custom trip, you can use the form below to tell us your needs and we’ll see what we can do.

Design your own tour
Discover Poland the way that matches your traveling style. Budget or luxury travel, family friendly vacations, topic-focused sightseeing, activity-packed tours, you name it! The sky is the limit.
GET A FREE TOUR PLAN
You May Also Like
CONTACT
RealPoland sp. z o.o.
Grochowska 217/15, 04-077 Warsaw POLAND
[email protected]USA number: +1 347 670 40 74
AU number: +61 2 8006 5041
PL number: +48 603 348 000
ABOUT US
We are an inbound Poland Tour Operator, located in Poland, specializing in group and private tours. Our aim is to make your stay here an unforgettable experience. We are experts in organizing unique, custom-made Polish holidays, suiting your personal needs. Our team consists of natives, fascinated by their homeland, licensed guides and touring agents with huge knowledge and energy to share. We will do our best to meet your highest expectations.

SOCIAL MEDIA
NEWSLETTER
Latest information from Poland, travel tips, a bit of history, culture and Polish traditions.

    Your full name

    Your email

    Copyright © RealPoland
    linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram