In Poland the 1st of March, is The National Memorial Day for the Cursed Soldiers (Żołnierze wyklęci).
The cursed soldiers ( “accursed soldiers” or “damned soldiers”) is a name given to a variety of resistance movements that were formed in Poland to the end of the second world war as well as during the early stages of communist rule; until they were stamped out and killed. The final cursed soldier (known) Józef Franczak, was killed in 1963.
The 1st of March also coincides with the 1951 Mokotów Prison Execution, when the Soviet Polish secret police (Urząd Bezpieczeństwa) executed seven members of the 4th Headquarters of anti-Communist organization Wolność i Niezawisłość (WiN). All seven men were executed in ten minute intervals with a single shot to the back of the head, the standard execution method as well as being consistent with the executions in the Katyn Forests.
The seven WiN soldiers graves are still unknown today.
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19 thoughts on “Żołnierze wyklęci”
love this photo Ben, while it represents something sad it is is strong and leading somewhere…hope maybe!? Thank you for the history…always interesting to know more!
Until I moved here I knew norhing about the history of Poland except those parts linked to WW2. Living here I have learnt so much esp with teaching, when I get to talk to a lot of people.
Thanks for taking the time to comment heather.
Thanks for the history – it’s always a good thing to learn more about our world. The picture is a good ‘fit’ and the slightly ott processing works really well.
I am always ready to teach. I thought for this image a little bit of ott wouldn’t hurt. Thanks for taking the time to comment.
Beautiful photo for such sad times.
It is such a black mark ib history. I was not surprised to learn from my students that people were banned for creating a memorial for these brave men and women.
Hi Ben let me start by telling you I love the photo; a dark place so beautifully rendered. it will catch the eye of people and then others will learn more of Poland’s history. We’ll done, thanks for sharing you art and your knowledge.
I feel it is important to share the more unknown side of history, which is seeming overlooked but modern western world. I am sure it is the same in many other countries.
Marvellous photog Raph, Ben, all the more poignant for being in monochrome. Where is this memorial?
This is in Warsaw. I don’t remember the street but I could find if I was there. I used a slightly stronger contrast but I think it works.
It works very well, Ben
A very strong photo and your treatment of it is, as always, well thought out; the lighting, the texture! Just beautiful!
Thank you Emilio
It is a very moving and thought provoking image, Ben. Fine work.
Thank you Andrew, with everything going on in the world is does make you stop and think.
Wow, haunting, cold and beautiful photo. I like the effect you’ve put on this that makes it look almost animated. And thank you for the history. 🙂
The effect was created with a “strong” HDR toning something I don’t like to do all the time. As you said it makes it very animated.
Definitely worked well here!
A strong picture Ben .. Thank you for sharing this and some history