Poland Celebrates Independence Day November 11

220px-Flag_of_PolandPoland Celebrates Independence Day November 11. Poland regained her independence at the end of World War I from the triumvirate of Austria, Germany and Russia after 123 years. The holiday takes on even more importance when you realize that under communist rule, from 1945 – 1989, it was forbidden to celebrate the day.

Polish Independence Day was not celebrated from 1939 – 1989
Ironically, Poland was only able to celebrate her independence for two years, 1937 and 1938 before World War II began. The country only declared the holiday in April 1937, and then the independent Polish state again disappeared under dual German and Russian occupation.

Poland as a country disappeared from the Map of Europe 1795 – 1918
My first introduction to Polish history came in my second interview with Henry Zguda. He was speaking of his father, from Krakow Poland, who “was made to join the Galician Austrian Army in World War I.”

            “Wait Henry. Don’t you mean the Polish Army?”

” No, No. There was no Poland then.”

In 1795 Poland disappeared from the map of Europe for 123 years when the three empires – Austrian, Prussian and Russian – conspired together and split up Poland.


World War I ended on November 11, 1918
World War I officially ended on the eleventh minute, of the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month in 1918, or November 11. In the United States, we celebrate Veterans Day on this day. Both England and France celebrate November 11 as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day. Nearly 100 years later, even though the world was tired of war, it seems naively ironic that November 11, 1918 was regarded as the “end of the war to end all wars.” We know differently of course, but can’t we hope as a human race?

In 2015, there is a growing wave of xenophobia in Poland (and other European countries), as resistance grows towards the recent influx of Arab and Syrian refugees, specifically the 7,000 Poland has agreed to accept. Yet ironically, after 1941 up to 300,000 Polish refugees, primarily Polish citizens deported to Stalin’s forced labor camps, made their way to Iran where they were welcomed. Most of these Polish refugees eventually moved on to other parts of the world, but without Iran’s assistance, most of those refugees would likely have met certain death.

Anti-racism rally in Warsaw – November 2015

Share Post

Tags: Poland

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed