Cimitero di Guerra Polacco di Loreto (Ancona)



Loreto Polish War Cemetery (Ancona)


Ottobre 2009 - October 2009



Il cimitero Militare Polacco di Loreto si trova lungo la Scala Santa che dalla stazione di Loreto sale verso il Santuario della Santa Casa, dove Ŕ venerata la Madonna di Loreto, patrona degli Aviatori. L'idea di raccogliere le salme dei tanti soldati polacchi, caduti nei combattimenti sostenuti nelle Marche, proprio davanti alla Basilica della Madonna di Loreto, nacque durante una Messa celebrata il 21 luglio 1944, pochi giorni dopo la conquista di Ancona. Erano presenti molti ufficiali e soldati del 2░ Corpo polacco che rimasero suggestionati dalla presenza di una cappella dedicata alla Madonna Regina della Polonia, nella quale sono raffigurati due fondamentali eventi della storia polacca: la vittoria di Sobieski a Vienna contro i Turchi (1683) e la vittoria di Varsavia contro i Bolscevichi (1920). Nel Cimitero Militare Polacco sono raccolti i corpi di 1.100 soldati polacchi caduti nella zona, in gran parte paracadutisti del 2░ Corpo d'Armata del Generale Anders

The Polish Military Cemetery of Loreto is the burial place of 1.100 Polish soldiers. Most of them were Paratroopers of the 2nd Corp of General Anders. The cemetery is very near the Sanctuary of the Virin Mary of Loreto


(All pics by EAF51_Bear)




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All pictures herewith published are exclusive property of the Authors. who gave their permission to publish them on www.eaf51.org, therefore they cannot be published or reproduced without the Autor's permission.




The Polish contribution to the Italian Campaign (1943-45)


(Source: http://www.vac-acc.gc.ca)


On September 1, 1939, without a declaration of war, Germany's army, navy, and air force invaded Poland from three directions, plunging Europe into a second devastating world war, barely 21 years after the ending of the first one. On September 17, another surprise rocked the Poles. The Soviet Union attacked from the east, leaving the Polish Army surrounded on all sides by the two most powerful armies in the world. Despite the staggering odds, the Poles fought valiantly, making the invaders pay for every inch of ground they took. In the end, the Polish government and armed forces were forced to flee to England, where they regrouped and fought alongside the Allied forces throughout the war. For operations in Italy, the 2nd Polish Corps was composed of the 3rd Carpathian Rifles Division (incorporating the old independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade), the 5th Kresowa Infantry Division, the 2nd Armoured Brigade, and the Army Group Artillery, as well as the necessary corps units, including the Polish Women's Auxiliary Service. The 2nd Corps, under the command of General W. Anders, landed in Italy in December 1943 and January 1944. As part of the British Eighth Army, it took up defensive positions along the river Sangro. Earlier, the Polish Commando Company had been sent to Italy for special duties. The Poles' most spectacular success came in May 1944 at Monte Cassino, which had defied three previous assaults by other Allied forces. On the 18th, after three days of fierce fighting, in which heavy casualties were assumed by the Corps, the Polish banner finally waved over the ruins of the Monte Cassino abbey, thus securing the opening of the road to Rome for the Allied forces as a whole. Many soldiers of the 2nd Polish Corps, who gave their lives in the name of democracy, lie with honour at Cassino Polish War Cemetery. One of the "heros" of the 2nd Polish Corps was Wojtek, a brown bear adopted in Iran as its mascot. At Monte Cassino Wojtek actually helped in the fighting by carrying ammunition for the guns. He died, famous and well-loved, in Edinburgh Zoo in 1964. In June, the Battle of Ancona led to the capture of this important port by the Polish Corps. Further operations led in the direction of Pesaro along the Adriatic coast. The Corps was then moved inland covering the British Eighth Army's flank in the Emilian Apennines. In January 1945 the Corps reached the river Senio, initiating three months of static warfare in preparation for the assault on Bologna. The offensive which began on April 9, 1945, led to the capture by Polish forces of Imola on April 15 and Bologna itself on April 21. The Corps was then withdrawn for recuperation, thus ending its campaign in Italy.  During the whole of the war, the Polish nation with its President and government at its head, refused to lay down arms, or surrender, and accept the temporary occupation of the country by its two neighbours. The Polish armed forces earned honours on battlefields in Norway, Libya, Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, Poland and Germany, from Narvik to Berlin.



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