Monument to Gen. Anders unveiled
PR dla Zagranicy
A monument to WW II hero General Wladyslaw Anders has been unveiled in Krosniewice, central Poland, the birthplace of the commander of Polish troops at Monte Cassino.
photo - PAP/Grzegorz Michałowski
His daughter, Anna Maria, who attended the ceremony, was evidently moved by the occasion.
She spoke of her strong attachment to her father and said that he always had time for her.
“Even though he lived in London, Poland was always the most important for him. He believed that he would be able to return to his homeland,” Anna Maria Anders said.
The ceremony was also attended by local officials and veterans of the Second Polish Corps.
Lieutenant Stanisław Płosinski recalled General Anders as a commander who was genuinely interested in the life of each and every of his soldiers.
General Anders, who was born in Krosniewice in 1892, was for many Poles, especially those living in exile, an iconic figure.
He was captured by the Soviets in February 1940. When Hitler turned on Stalin in June 1941, he was released from the Lubyanka prison in Moscow and was later given the task of forming an army from the survivors of the one and a half million Poles who had been captured in 1939 or later deported into the Soviet Union.
General Anders led some 77,000 soldiers accompanied by over 43,000 civilians who had suffered starvation in labour camps and gulags out of the Soviet Union into Persia.
In 1943 the Second Polish Corps under General Anders’ command landed in Italy and in May 1944 suffered great losses in the capture of Monte Cassino.
After the war, the communist government in Poland deprived Anders of Polish citizenship and military rank. They were posthumously reinstated after the collapse of communism in 1989.
General Anders died in London on 12 May 1970, the 26th anniversary of the Battle of Monte Cassino, and was buried, in accordance with his last will, at the Polish War Cemetery at Monte Cassino in Italy. (mk/pg)