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Under Polish Wings: The Georgian Emigration In Poland 1921-1939
Deluxe album of archival black and white photographs of Warsaw and its inhabitants in the interwar period.

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ISBN: 9788361325475

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In 1921, Major General Wladyslaw Sikorski, Chief of the Polish General Staff - after receiving the agreement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and following a positive opinion from the General Staff - agreed to accept Georgians to the Infantry Officer-Cadet School in Warsaw. Besides political and military reasons, also taken under consideration was the fact that in 1917 and 1918, the Georgian government at the time took a positive stance towards Polish units then forming in the Caucasus, despite the fact that an independent Polish government did not yet exist. These units also gained considerable aid from the Georgian government and its people. As Polish diplomat Tytus Filipowicz pointed out, the subsidies totalled well over ten million French francs at the time. He went on to note: "It should be underlined, that the Georgian government did not present Poland with any financial bill due to the friendly relations between the two countries. Thus, the later intended act of aiding Georgia in such difficult emigre circumstances was also an expression of gratitude and a kind of settling of accounts on the part of Poland".

This album was published on the 95th anniversary of the reception of over one hundred Georgian officers - emigres under the protective wings of the Second Polish Republic, as well as the 25th anniversary of Georgia regaining its independence. It includes many historical and archival black and white photographs.

Many similarities can be found in the histories of Poland and Georgia. Following the First World War, Georgia, like Poland, began the difficult task of building an independent country. Following an uneven struggle with the Bolshevik Red Army and the loss of independence in 1921, the Georgian government was forced to go into exile in Constantinople. Acting in the name of the Polish government, Col. Leon Bobicki, military attache of the Polish Embassy in Turkey, offered Georgian officers the opportunity to serve in the Polish Army as contract officers. Over one hundred officers of Georgian nationality accepted this offer to continue the struggle for a free and independent Georgia in the ranks of the Polish Army. These officers, starting in 1939, fought in the ranks of the Polish Army on all fronts of the Second World War - sharing the fortunes and misfortunes of war with their Polish colleagues. A number of them were held in in the NKVD camp in Kozielsk and were later murdered in Katyn. Georgian officers who went underground and joined the Home Army fought, among others, in the Warsaw Uprising. Few survived the wartime and post-war repressions. In May 2007, at the Warsaw Uprising Museum, the presidents of Poland and Georgia unveiled a monument to the Georgian contract officers who served in the Polish Army. This is the only monument devoted to the memory of Georgian soldiers situated outside of Georgia.
  • Hardcover
  • 243 pages
  • Black and white archival photographs
  • 2016
  • Size 9.5" x 11.75" - 23.5cm

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