Archive for the ‘History’ Category

“Polonia in Cleveland and the Journey of Julian Stanczak”

Friday, February 28th, 2014

Wednesday, March 19, 2014, 2:00 – 4:00 PM
Western Reserve Historical Society

 

As part of the series of events celebrating the life and work of Julian Stanczak, a panel discussion on Cleveland’s Polish immigrant community will be held at Western Reserve Historical Society on Wednesday, March 19th, from 2 to 4 pm. Participating in the discussion will be Gene Bak, Mary Erdmans, John Grabowski, and Sean Martin. This panel discussion will examine the long history of Cleveland’s Polish immigrant community, with particular emphasis on the post-war migration of individuals like Julian Stanczak who came to play major roles in art and culture within and outside of that community. This is a free event. For more information on Stanczak, including details of current exhibitions, see http://www.siegallifelonglearning.org/stanczak-programs.html

 

November 11th Polish Independence Day Reception

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

All are welcome. Reception starts at 2 PM.

More info about Polish Independence Day

The Glory of Poland

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

My first thought, hearing of the Polish tragedy, was that history’s gyre can be of an unbearable cruelty, decapitating Poland’s elite twice in the same cursed place, Katyn.

My second was to call my old friend Adam Michnik in Warsaw. Michnik, an intellectual imprisoned six times by the former puppet-Soviet Communist rulers, once told me:

“Anyone who has suffered that humiliation, at some level, wants revenge. I know all the lies. I saw people being killed. But I also know that revanchism is never ending. And my obsession has been that we should have a revolution that does not resemble the French or Russian, but rather the American, in the sense that it be for something, not against something. A revolution for a constitution, not a paradise. An anti-utopian revolution. Because utopias lead to the guillotine and the gulag.”

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President Kaczynski’s last speech

Monday, April 12th, 2010

“Dear Representatives of the Katyn Families. Ladies and Gentlemen. In April 1940 over twenty-one thousand Polish prisoners from the NKVD camps and prisons were killed. The genocide was committed at Stalin’s will and at the Soviet Union’s highest authority’s command.

The alliance between the Third Reich and the Soviet Union, the Ribbentrop-Molotov pact and the Soviet attack on Poland on 17 September 1939 reached a terrifying climax in the Katyn massacre. Not only in the Katyn forest, but also in Tver, Kcharkiv and other known, and unknown, execution sites citizens of the Second Republic of Poland, people who formed the foundation of our statehood, who adamantly served the motherland, were killed.

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“The Soviet Story” – Video Documentary

Friday, March 12th, 2010

“The Soviet Story” is a startling document of cooperation with the Gestapo, the NKVD before the year 1941. The film tells the story of Soviet domestic terror, the killing of its citizens “on an industrial scale, artificially induced by the Great Famine in Ukraine (Holodomor) of a murder at Katyn.
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Seventy Years Ago…

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

February 10, 1940 – the second most important date, after the Soviet invasion of September 17, 1939, to engrave itself in the memories of the residents of the eastern kresy (borderlands) of the Second Republic. The first mass deportation of Poles to Siberian camps, officially known as „resettlement”, began at dawn on February 10th, seventy years ago. More than 220,000 people were taken – state officials (including judges, prosecutors, and policemen), self-government activists, foresters, landowners, and those in the military with families. The deported were taken to the northern regions of the Soviet Union, near Archangelsk, Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk, and Komi. An estimated one and a half to two million Poles were taken to this „inhuman land” by the Soviets during  four deporations, lasting until June 1941. (more…)

Memories of Christmas Eve

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

The year was 1943 and the winter, as is usual in the Bialystok region, was harsh.  The trees looked like glassy, motionless objects.  Houses in the entire town stood shrouded in melancholy  and dread.  As night fell, the lights went dark in the windows, leaving only the moon casting its glow among distant cold stars.  Sometimes passing airplanes could be  heard,  followed by  the sounds of bombs exploding far away  and then a glow of fires burning somewhere over the horizon reflected in the night sky. (more…)

Professor Maciuszko and General Kościuszko

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

September 28, 2009 marked the 70th anniversary of the Nazi-Soviet Friendship and Bounty Treaty also known as the second Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact.  On that day David Barnett presented an extensive interview with Prof.  Jerzy Maciuszko in a radio program entitled ‘Around Noon’ on WCPN 90.3 FM.  As a soldier of the 50th Infantry Brigade of the Polish Army, Jerzy Maciuszko was one of the first who stood up against the invading Nazi army in the early days of September   1939.  At the outset of the war, his platoon came under intense German fire and suffered heavy losses.  Only a small number of the Polish soldiers survived. He was among the lucky ones.

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A Child’s View of the Warsaw Uprising

Monday, August 24th, 2009

As part of the European Union program, „Europe for Citizens”, the Museum of the City of Warsaw has published an anthology of writings in Polish, English, and German. Below is an abbreviated version of the story of an eleven-year-old girl.
Our family was intact at the outbreak of the Warsaw Uprising (my parents must have known when it was about to begin). The first of August, at 5 pm. The sirens began, and the city began to come to life. Through the open window of our apartment on the first floor of 5 Grzybowska Street, the sounds of war came bursting in, growing louder. The residents began building a barricade at the beginning of the street, near the gate of the building. In several hours the barricade had grown high and wide and the soldiers of the Home Army felt safe behind it. Finally, Warsaw, tortured by the occupation, was attacking its enemy. (more…)

The “Enigma” Secret

Saturday, March 14th, 2009

Some time ago, Dr. Elzbieta Ulanowska published an article in our “Forum” on the enormous contribution of Polish mathematicians in the victory over the Bolsheviks in 1920. Let me only remind readers that the Polish mathematicians deciphered the code used by the Red Army, so all the moves of the Red Army’s divisions were well known to the Polish leadership.

Many of us remember another, better known event in this history, when, again, Polish mathematicians played the main role. This is the Enigma Secret. And here’s how it all started. In 1927, or at the beginning of 1928, an innocent package has arrived from the German Reich at a customs office in Warsaw. (more…)