Less We Forget Poppy


The Life and Times of Hubert Brooks M.C. C.D.
A Canadian Hero

Less We Forget Poppy


Chapter 3: ESCAPE TO DANGER – Fighting with the POLISH UNDERGROUND ARMY – The A.K.

Section 3.8:   Septemebr 22, 1944 -   FORMATION of 1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich Armii Krajowej (1 PSP AK)   (1st Regiment Mountain Rifles of the Polish Home Army)

Graphic of AK Regions in Poland

The history of the 1st Podhale Rifles Regiment AK (1PSP-AK) (1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich Armii Krajowej ) has been officially documented in the August 20, 1944 report of General Bruno Olbrycht "Olza" C/O of "Slask Cieszynski Operation Group".

As discussed below in the Historical Background section, the 1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich Armii Krajowej (1 PSP AK) was actually formed in the autumn of 1918.

Up until September of 1944 the 1 PSP AK had been around in various states of existance. As documented in the Historical Background sidepiece below, during the war years a number of different commanders were at the regiment's helm.

Following the death on September 4, 1944 of ppłk Stanisław Mirecki "Butrym", "Wit", "Pociej" after being wounded during a chase, arrested at Kisielowka near Tymbark, taken to Nowy Sacz where he died in a hospital; Mjr. Adam Stabrawa ps "Borowy" would assume the leadership position of the Regiment.

"Borowy" then assimulated a large number of the then independant partisan guerilla groups (such as Wilk, Wilk II, Topór, OP "Sobel", oddziału "Mszyca", OP "Świerk", OP "Żbik", OP "Cios", OP "Miecz" and so forth) into one cohesive unit under the central command banner 1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich Armii Krajowej (1 PSP AK).
At that time, early September 1944, the Regiment was principally concentrated in the area Turbacz in Gorce.

As an aside, the AK had divided Poland up into in a number of districts or "Inspektorats". (See map at right.)

The Regiment 1 PSP AK operated in a region of southern Poland between Biecz and Jordanow within four administrative units "Powiaty" or Counties of Gorlice, Limanowa, Nowy Sacz and, Nowy Targ.

On 22 September 1944 at Skalka (near Turbacz) in Gorce Mountains, "Borowy" formalized the Regiment     1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich (1 PSP AK ) (1st Regiment of Riflemen AK).

The Inspectorate would be headquartered in Nowy Sacz, codenamed "NIWA" and would include the four counties of: Nowy Sącz, Limanowa, Gorlice and Nowy Targ absorbing a number of partisan groups into one unified Regiment command structure encompasing approximately 1,285 soldiers.

On September 24, 1944, the date of concentration and swearing in of the Regiment, the priest ks. Jana Czuja gave a mass celebrating the formation of the Inspectorate and where an oath was administered to the attendees.

On this date, the 1 PSP - AK became the overarching umbrella command for a large number of the then independent partisan resistance groups such as Wilk and Topor etc and as a unit within the Armii Krajowej.
After swearing in all sections were restructured into battalions and companies.
Some would say, this was when the partisan resistance movement turned into a partisan army.

It should be noted that not all AK soldiers were incorporated into battallions, some stayed in local regional circuits or structures - however Borowy still exercised ad hoc command even of these units.

1 PSP AK showed during its existence very lively combat activities in the Polish Highlands operating primarily in the Podhale to Gorce region. As a result, the Nazis had to position nearly 50,000 soldiers and police in this area - critically pulling these forces from the front lines. During WW II, the Nazis gave the area the name "Partizan Republic" due to the strong resistance activity and the partisans were labelled bandits with signs most everywhere warning : Achtung! Banditen! Banditendorf! Banditengefahr! (Attention! Bandits! Bandits village! Bandits risk!) etc.

The weapons stockpile in the Inspectorate circa October 1944 consisted of: 2 PIAT grenades, 9 heavy machine guns, 37 machine guns, 85 machine guns, 188 pistols, 401 hand grenades, and 568 rifles.

Further, guerrilla activities continued to be significantly hampered by the lack of weapons and ammunition. It was very difficult to carry out any major action without the necessary firepower. Borowy was constantly scheming to address this issue. Assaults on the Precinct border guards were conducted mid October 1944 near Czarna Woda and near Szczawa to obtain weapons.

During the time of his command Borowy- Major Stabrawa - had the added onerous task of constantly trying to maintain good relations with other guerrilla groups that operated in the same area; including the Batalionami Chłopskimi, the Armią Ludową, and the Soviet partisans under Ivan Zołotar.

The 1 PSP AK regiment would fight until January 1945 with the last battle fought with the Germans on 13-14 January 1945 in the area of Szczawa. According to the order of the commander of the Krakow District Army Regiment the 1 PSP AK was dissolved on January 19, and the troops demobilized.

 

As previously mentioned, in late September of 1944, John and I were transfered from Wilk to the HEADQUARTERS COMMAND of 1 PSP AK under Maj. Adam Stabrawa "Borowy". Here we were given a number of different special assignments working within different Company Battalions in the months to come right up until the end of the war January of 1945.

In southern Poland the HEADQUARTERS of 1 PSP AK was with the Inspektorat AK Nowy Sącz ps. "NIWA".

Inspectorate Regiment AK Nowy Sącz ps. "NIWA" Headquarters Staff
as of September 1944
Inspectorate Commanding OfficerMaj. Adam Stabrawaps. "Borowy"
Deputy Commanderrtm. Włodzimierz Budarkiewiczps. "Podkowa"
QuartermasterKpt. Michael Wojciechowskips. "Profesor"
Adjutant (and Information Officer)Kpt. Jan Cieślakps. "Maciej"
2nd Adjutant (and Communications Officer)por. Szymon Pyrćps. "Jaskółka"
Intelligence Officer por. Stefan Jedliński ps. "Bartek"
Materials Officermgr. Stanisław Ehrbarps. "Marian"
Provisions Officerppor. Józef Kromkaps. "Karaś"
Weapons Officerppor. Władysław Kukla ps. "Zagoszcz"
Chief of Staffst. sierż. Wacław Koseckips. "Korab"
Regiment Doctordr. Marian Mosslerps. "Leliwa"
Regiment Chaplainks. Jan Stelmachps. "Urban"
Oficer lotnik Armii KanadyjskaHubert Brooksps. "Jubelt" "Hubert"
Podoficer Armii Brytyjskiej /Szkot/John Duncan ps. "John"
Inspectorate Commanding Officer: Maj. Adam Stabrawa ps. "Borowy"
Dowódca 1 PSP AK

During the war Borowy generally prohibited anyone
from taking a picture of him for security reasons
Photo Maj. Adam Stabrawa



MOGIELNICA, Late 1944
1) por. "Maciej Jan Cieśk ad-cy,   2. Mjr "Borowy" Adam Stabrawa d-ca 1 PSP AK,  3. NN - in background,  4. por. "Andrzej" Jan Lipozewski d-ca I batalionu 1 psp AK,  5. Dr. Artur Werner "Strzelba" doctor for Szczawnicy regiment,  6. NN ? "Jaskółka" - Szymon Pyrć ?

Image Courtesy: Estate of Józef Węglarz "Mały"
Andrzej and collegues conferring
One of the rare photos of Inspectorate Commanding Officer: Maj. Adam Stabrawa ps. "Borowy"
along with members of his staff Włodzimierz Budarkiewicz and Mieczyslaw Batkiewicz
Photo Maj. Adam Stabrawa, Włodzimierz Budarkiewicz and Mieczyslaw Batkiewicz

(Adam had taken over from the first Regiment commander of the 1 PSP AK Lt. Col. Stanisław Mirecki (aka "Pociej") who was wounded then captured August 27, 1944 and died in German prison in Nowy Sącz)
(Adam then moved from his then current position of commander I battalion Inspectorate Nowy Sącz to the overall Regiment command position) .

Command Protection Branch (Oddział Ochrony Dowództwa)

At the end of October 1944 the Command Protection Branch numbered 20 soldiers growing by the end of the year to 31 soldiers.

Commander - plut. Kazimierz Pakuła ps. "Wilczek"
Deputy Commander - plut. Stanisław Dzioboń ps. "Herkules"

Some of the names of the soldiers in this Command Protection Branch such as
st.strz. Andrzej Stabrawa ps "Sosna" and and Wladyslaw Stabrawa "Sep" (brothers of "Borowy")
can be found listed in the attached LINKED file

 

Command Special Radio Communications Troop "PP" and "Pelikany" (Komórka Odbioru Zrzutów "PP")

The Special Radio Communications Troop codenamed "PP", commonly called by the soldiers "Pelikany", took care of maintaining communication with the base in Italy and the technical side of the allied armament drops.
The PP cells consisted of two officers, radio operators, and 8 protection guards.
The headquarters of the PP Troop was in the Szczawa area.

Commander - por. Antoni Turski ps. "Tolek"
Deputy Commander - por. Ryszard Blatkiewicz ps. "Leliwa"
Commander to protect the "Pelikany" Troop- pchor./por Jan Adamczyk ps. "Gryf"

From Nowy Sącz as of September 22, 1944 (Borowy) divided the southern region into 4 parts or battalions called Komenda Obwodu (Obwód) ie Inspectorates.

These 4 southern Polish AK districts or commands formed in September 1944 were:

Commander Battalion I "Nowy Sącz": Kpt. Jan Wojciech Lipczewski ps "Andrzej"

Photo Wojciech Lipczewski - Andrzej
Commander Battalion II "Limanowa": kpt. Julian Krzewicki ps "Filip"

Photo Julian Krzewicki ps Filip
Commander Battalion III "Gorlice": Lt. Mieczysław Przybyłski ps "Michal" (on left facing camera)

Photo Courtesy of: IPN (Instytut Pamięci Narodowej) Archive (Dawid Golik)
      The Institute of National Remembrance Archive in Cracow, Poland
      IPN (Instytut Pamięci Narodowej) Oddział w Krakowie.
      English website: http://ipn.gov.pl/en/
Photo Mieczyslaw Przybylski  ps Michal
Commander Battalion IV "Nowy Targ": Mjr. Julian Zapała ps Lampart

Photo Julian Zapała  ps Lampart
  1. Battalion I "Nowy Sącz" (codename "202") (where Wilk was primarily situated) under the command of
    Kpt. Jan Wojciecha Lipczewskiego (aka "Andrzej” and “Wierzyca”).

    Deputy Commander and Battalion Adjutant -
      por. Józef Gołembiowski (underground name Wisniewski) ps. "Sochacki";
    Officer of Arms - ppor. Lucjan Ziarnik ps. "Knieja";
    Quartermaster - ppor. Antoni Łaś ps. "Dudek"
    Battalion Doctor - Dr. Boguslaw Fagiański ps. "Lubicz"

    1 PSP AK headquarters was located within this Battalion's footprint,

    (As an aside: Oddział Partyzancki Armii Krajowej (Branch Partisan Army) “Wilk” (under por. Krystyna Więckowskiego “Zawisza” and then from mid-August 1944, in the absence of the injured " Zawisza" , Feliks Perekładowski “Przyjaciel”), “Wilk II” (under command of Lt. Wiktor Lach “Wilk”) and “Topór” (under Aleksander Marczyński "Strzemię") were concentrated in Limanowa circuit and then formed into Battalion I under “Andrzej”. “Wilk” became the whole 1 company of this bataillon.“Wilk” was formed July of 1943, “Wilk II” and “Topór” were formed a year later – in the summer of 1944.)

    1. 1st Company -
          Lieutenant Commander Felix Perekładowski ps."Przyjaciel",
      and subsequently commanded by
          Major Marian Skowron ps. "Olcha"
    2. 2nd Company - Lieutenant Commander Gustaw Górecki ps. "Gustaw"
      Deputy Commander - ppor. Jan Tokarczyk ps. "Baca"
      Platoon Commanders:
             ppor. Andrzej Pluciński ps. "Morski-Głowacki",
             ppor. Julian Skurski ps. "Joule",
             ppor. Szymon Janik ps. "Czarny",
             ppor. Zygmunt Mańkowski ps. "Iglica",
             ppor. Jan Tokarczyk ps. "Baca".
    3. 3rd Company - never created


  2. Battalion II "Limanowa" under the command of
    kpt. Julian Krzewicki (aka "Filip”)
    who operated primarily in the northern part of Limanowskiego (Limanowa);
    assisted directly by
         Deputy Commander por. Bronisław Humemmy ps. ”Jerzy”, ”Antek”
         Adjutant: por.Ludwik Schweiger ps. “Karol” and “Siwy”,
         Chaplain: ks. Franciszek Kostrzański ps. "Hubert", "Mirt",
         Doctor: Stefan Halcarz ps "Sęk"
    1. 4th Company - Commander Bronisław Humemmy ps. ”Jerzy”, ”Antek
    2. 5th Company - Lieutenant Commander Jan Połomski ps. ”Dąb
    3. 6th Company - Lieutenant Commander Jan Stachura ps. ”Adam


  3. Battalion III "Gorlice" under the command of
    Lt. Mieczysława Przybylskiego (aka. "Michała”)
    working in the district Gorlickiego,
    1. 7th Company - Bolesław Korayga ps. ”Orlik
    2. 8th Company - Commander Stanisław Siemka ps. ”Świerk
    3. 9th Company - Commander Julian Zubek ps. ”Tatar


  4. and finally, Battalion IV "Nowy Targ" under the command of
    Major Julian Zapała (aka. "Lampart")
    Adjutant: ppor. Józef Przedrzymirski "Sokół"
    working mainly in Gorce (Gorcach) and Nowy Targ area.
    1. 10th Company - Commander Maj. Tadeusz Kosmowski ps.”Las
    2. 11th Company - Initially
         por. Adam Czartoryski "Szpak"
      and then
         ppor. Adam Winnicki ps. ”Pazur

                  

Battalion I "Nowy Sącz" Command
Photo Courtesy of: Andrzej Urbaniec ps. "Grzechotnik" from Łącko (near Nowy Sącz)
Photo Andrzej and Przyjaciel and Gustaw

It should be noted that despite belonging to distinct battalions, and companies and groups within a battalion, most often the individual mark of the group commander came to the forefront and became "the name" that the group was known as. If there was a military action, it was said that this is the work of group "Adam" or group "Lampart", or "Lasa", etc.

In the Gorce region for example it was mainly the battalions I (under Feliks Perekładowski ps. “Przyjaciel”) and IV (under who was to became arguably the most famous commander Julian Zapała ps. "Lampart") which operated.


Editor's NOTE on the HISTORICAL BACKGROUND for the 1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich (1 PSP AK):
The 1 Pułk Strzelców Podhalańskich (1 PSP AK) was formed in the autumn of 1918.
In January 1919 the regiment received a "headquarters" garrison in the Podhale town of Nowy Sącz.

In September 1939, the 1 PSP AK fought the German army near Janow and was defeated in very heavy fighting. The partisan survivors of the battle that were captured were sent to POW camps, whereas those that survived quietly returned to their homes to wait to fight another day.
In late 1939 Maj. Vaclav SZYĆKO ps. VICTOR, Deputy inspectorate Nowosądeckie, along with John Cieslak ps. MACIEJ re-organized the 1 PSP in the Podhale area covering the four counties: Nowy Sącz, Limanowa, Gorlice and Nowy Targ.    
mjr. Franciszek ŻAK ps. FRANEK served as overall commander of the inspectorates Nowosądeckie at this time.

The organizational framework was set in place for officers, NCOs and other ranks taping into former PSP soldiers as well as other partisan resistance fighters in the area.
Prior to September 1944 the 1 PSP AK had existed but more in a formative localized state - with partisan resistance groups such as Wilk, Topor, Aphid and so forth spanned the area of Podhale to Gorce and the regions of Nowy Sącz, Nowy Targ, Limanowa and Gorlice, that would eventually form the foundation for the 4 Batallions that would make up the 1 PSP AK .

Between 1939 and September 1944 a number of different commanders assumed control of the unit.

Inspektorat Nowy Sącz:      "Strumień", "Niwa", "VII", "Lipiec", "Sosna", "D", "O/10", "9", "18"

Inspector Commanders:
 mjr Franciszek Żak "Franek": 1939 - spring 1941
 kpt. Wacław Szyćko "Wiktor": spring 1941 - ??
 mjr Franciszek Galica."RYŚ": 1941 - 26 August 1942
 ppłk Stanisław Mirecki "Butrym", "Pociej", "Wit": 1943 - 27 August 1944 (shot in action by the Germans and died in hospital).
 p.o. por. Jan Wojciech Lipczewski "Andrzej", "Jacek", "Wierzyca": August 28 - September 22, 1944
 mjr Adam Stabrawa "Borowy": 22 September 1944 - January 1945 - see SECTION 3.8

Adjutant (Aides):
 por. Jan Wojciech Lipczewski "Andrzej", "Jacek", "Wierzyca": February 1943 - 22 September 1944
 por. Jan Cieślak "Maciej", "Michał": 22 September 1944 - January 1945

Obwody (Regions):

Nowy Sącz      "Chwast", "2/VII", "4", "8", "Swisłosz"
Commanders:
                       Stanisław Wideł "Kruk": ?? - ??
 rtm. Lucjan Sławik "Ratułd": ?? - ??
 por. Stanisław Leszko "Emil", "Werwa", "Olcha": ?? - 1944
 kpt. Jan Wojciecha Lipczewskiego "Andrzej” and “Wierzyca”: Sept 22, 1944 - January 1945

Obwód Nowy Targ      "Paproć", "Tyśmienica"
Commanders:
 por. Krystyn Więckowski "Zawisza": spring 1941 - summer 1943
 mjr. Adam Stabrawa "Borowy": July 1943 - 22 September 1944
 ppor. Jan Kabłak-Ziembicki "Halny", "Halny - Klin": September 1944 - ??
 mjr. Julian Zapała "Lampart" ?? - January 1945

Limanowa
Commanders:
 kpt. Wacław Szyćko "Wiktor": 1939 - 17 May 1942
 por. Władysław Szczypka "Lech": May 1942 - spring 1943
 por. Stanisław Leszko "Emil", "Werwa", "Olcha": spring - autumn 1943
 kpt. Julian Krzewicki "Filip": autumn 1943 - 1945

Gorlice      "Gawron", "Gnida", "Gil", "Gniła Lipa", "Kłos", "6/VII", "8/16", "81", "9/III"
Commanders:
 por. rez. inź. Rościsław Piątkiewicz "Roźek": 1939
 rtm. Marian Waldeck "Kątski", "Werner", "Wilk": May 1940 - July 1941
 kpt. sł. art. Władysław Bandrowski "Zbych": September 1942
 kpt. Julian Krzewicki "Kruk".: October 1942 - ??
 pchor. Wincenty Horodyński "Wąź": October 1943
 por./mjr. Mieczysław Przybylski "Bartłomiej", "Sporysz", "Michał": October 1943 - 1945

Inspektorat ZWZ-AK Podhale (Nowy Targ): "Tort".

(This unit existed until the autumn of 1942, then it was merged with the Inspectorate of Nowy Sacz. After the liquidation of the Inspectorate of Nowy Targ and turned into the Inspectorate of Nowy Sacz, the areas: Nowy Targ, Zakopane and Rabka combined into one area of AK Nowy Targ).)

Inspector Commanders:
 mjr Franciszek Galica "Ryś": October 1939 - 26 August 1942 (arrested).
 kpt. Aleksander Wojciech Mikuła "Karol", "Miłosz", "Orion", "Robert": 1942

Obwody (Regions):

Nowy Targ
Commanders:
 por. N.N. "Czaja"
 ppor. Mieczysław Bełtowski "Antoni Wilga": ?? - ??
 por. Krystyn Więckowski "Zawisza": spring 1941 - ??

Zakopane
Commanders:
 por. rez. inź. Marian Moniczewski "Marian": summer 1941

Rabka
Commanders:
 por. Michał Brzoza "Tulipan": January 1942 - ??


LEADING UP TO OPERATION “BURZA”

To this point in time, the Polish underground had been somewhat restrained in its direct attacks on German positions as a result of horrific German retribution on innocent civilians in near by villages. Far too often the price for any transgression against the Germans was blood and burnt out villages.
Starting roughly in November of 1944 we started to ramp the frequency and intensity of our ambushes, attacks and destruction of German equipment, transport and communication lines to co-ordinate with the Allies war effort.

The general plan was to engage in a number of sabotage attacks, and then activated by a code signal on the normal B.B.C. radio transmission have a co-ordinated major all out partisan attack across Poland in concert with the Russian move to significantly disrupt German re-supply and reinforcement efforts. Co-ordinated TIMING would obviously result in maximum damage to the enemy.

The B.B.C. radio transmission for the major activation was to be a morning broadcast occuring after the news bulletin and before the eventual music on record, denoted by the announcement "W" followed by the code message in Polish repeated 3 times.

When a communication or transportation line (be it rail or motor road) was attacked or cut, the objective was to cut it in several places such that it was disrupted for a substantial period of time. A single disruption would typically be repaired by the Germans in 36 to 48 hours.

Our plan entailed identifying alternative sites for demolition in the event that the primary site was secured by German forces or for some reason not actionable.

While we waited for the radio transmission message for the major Russian move and/or our co-ordinated partisan attack, there were a number of important activities that our partisan units were attending to.

OPERATION “BURZA” (aka “Tempest”) - The General Rising in Occupied Poland Against the Nazis

It was clear that the war effort was about to heat up, the Soviet's were massing for an all out attack on the eastern border, General Sosnkowski from the London based Polish Government-In-Exile was ramping up the rhetoric for a General Rising (against the Germans). Our partisan leadership was told to start to plan in earnest for Operation “Burza” (“Tempest”) which entailed attacking and disrupting German forces to facilitate the expected Soviet advance.

To this end, a series of regional and local partisan Commander's Meetings were held to discuss strategy and tactics.

PHOTO: Partisan Commander Meeting Autumn 1944.

From Left to right:
1) Jan Barański "Maczuga" (background 1st left);
2) por. Jan Grzywacz "Skryty"
front row left
3) kpt. Julian Krzewicki "Filip" (commander of 2 battalion 1 psp AK ("Limanowa" area)(front row left),
4) "Hubert" Brooks, (2nd left front row with black sweater)
5) Doctor Tadeusz Ptak "Olszyna",
6) in back of him (just a head seen smiling) por. Jan Cieślak "Maciej",
7) "John" Duncan (front row 2nd from end with black sweater) and
8) in front ppor. Jan Stachura "Adam" (the second commander of "Wilk" unit and then the Commander of "Mszyca" unit in Rabka area, later Commander of IV Company II Battalion 1 Mountain Regiment of Home Army)

Photo Provided By:
Michał Maciaszek, GRH Commander, The Polish Historical Society,
34-400 Nowy Targ, ul. Św. St. Doroty 55 Dorothy 55, Poland.

Photo Originates from : The Home Archive of Włodzimierz Budarkiewicz "Podkowa" ("Spur") the Second Commander of 1 psp AK
(He was "Borowy"’s "backup" to look after the battalion when Borowy was away in Krakow or in other places.) (Archive now controlled by his daughter Irena Budarkiewicz).
Photo Partisan Commander Meeting Autumn 1944
2nd Battalion 1 psp AK Soldiers Left To Right (Front Row Only):
1) Deputy Chief Jan Grzywacz "Skryty" (with guitar),
2) Communications Officer Sgt. Jan Guzik "Mikolaj" (front sitting sideways with hat),
3) Adjutant Jan Simon "Szarotka",
4) Commander Julian Krzewicki "Filip"
5) Hubert Brooks (far right in this photo)

Photo Courtesy of: Dr. Jerzy Krzewicki son of Mjr. Julian Krzewicki ("Filip")
the Commander of the 2nd Battalion 1 psp AK and Head of Limanowa Region
Hubert Brooks with AK Partisans

ACTIVITIES with the 4th Battalion 1 psp AK Soldiers

4th Battalion 1 psp AK Soldiers
Photo taken 30 September / 1 October 1944 made during the march from Ochotnica to Biała Woda

Photo Courtesy of: Thomas Kuczaj son of Jan Kuczaj "Harnaś"
4th Battalion 1PSP AK soldiers during the march from Ochotnica to Biała Woda
September 29, 1944 Ochotnica Dolna Cemetery
Newly Dug Graves of Fallen AK Partisan Soldiers:    Olek Kszystyniaka ps. "Szarotka",    and  Ignatius Gorczewskiego ps. "Brzoza"    -  Killed During The Battle at Luban
During the March to the Forest of Biała Woda, 4th Battalion 1 psp AK Soldiers:     Stan Wojdyła "Szum",    Jan Kuczaj "Harnaś"    and  Józef Rapacz "Szejk"
Take Time Out to Pay Their Respects to Fallen AK Partisan Soldiers Killed during the Battle of Luban. Graves are covered with Wildflowers

Photos Courtesy of: Thomas Kuczaj son of Jan Kuczaj "Harnaś"
(Photos also can be found on pages II and 125 of Jan Kuczaj's book OCALIĆ OD ZAPOMNIENIA - Rabianie W Walce O Suwerenność Polski)

September 29 1944 Stan Wojdyła September 29 1944 Stan Wojdyła
4th Battalion 1 psp AK Soldiers
Photo taken 30 September / 1 October 1944 in the Forest of Biała Woda - Prior To Action on Zollgrenzschutz Post

Photo Courtesy of: Thomas Kuczaj son of Jan Kuczaj "Harnaś"
4th Battalion 1PSP AK soldiers in  the Forest of Biała Woda   Prior To Action on Zollgrenzschutz post

  *******************************

Each local Pelikany radio communications unit would transmit (at least) monthly reports to the Polish-Government-In-Exile detailing activities for the month. These reports, for the most part, were then translated and forwarded to the British (SOE) for co-ordination of intelligence and the war effort.

The images below provide some EXAMPLES of Monthly Activity Reports from some of our units.

Each Month, Each District with the Polish AK
Would Send Monthly Reports to the Polish Authorities in London
These Reports Were Then Translated Into English for British Allies
Images above an EXAMPLE of the Polish/ English Monthly Report for October - November 18th for 1st Mountain Rifles

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Partisan OCt-Nov Monthly Report for 1st Mountain Rifles in Polish Partisan OCt-Nov Monthly Report for 1st Mountain Rifles
Each Month, Each District with the Polish AK
Would Send Monthly Reports to the Polish Authorities in London
Image above is the Monthly Report for November for Podhale

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Partisan November Monthly Report for Podhale
Further EXAMPLE Supplemental Partisan Report for month of November 1944

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Supplemental Partisan November Monthly Report
Further EXAMPLE
December 4, 1944 Partisan Report for Iwkowa

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Dec 4 1944 Partisan Report for Iwkowa

One of the KEY intelligence gathering activities that the various regional partisan groups was now more actively involved with was the close monitoring of German men and material transportation activities. London wanted to know where the Germans were going and what they were up to. Most important was the transport capacities of these lines. For example, very often when the Germans wanted to send troops North to South, rather than use the "poorer lines" that run direct they would send their troops / materials back to the rear on the main lines - sometimes even right back to Germany, and then round by the main southern line CRACOW - LWOW. The Germans had great difficulties in sending supplies and reinforcements to the south-eastern sectors on the front.

The IMAGES below provide some EXAMPLES of reports to London from the Polish underground.

Part of Polish Partisan AK Activities
Was to Monitor German Rail Activity and Report to the Polish Authorities in London
These Reports Were Then Translated Into English for British Allies
Images above are an EXAMPLE of One Such Intelligence Report for Late November Early December 1944

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Partisan Intelligence Report German Transport by Rail in Polish Partisan Intelligence Report German Transport by Rail Partisan Intelligence Report 6 re German Transport
Partisan Intelligence Report on German Transports 2 Partisan Intelligence Report on German Transports Partisan Intelligence Report 7 on German Transports

The Polish underground had always had INFORMANTS who had secured trusted jobs with the Germans or with organizations that the German war machine relied on. Now, with a major offensive looming, the role of these partisan informants became even more important from an intelligence standpoint and they were asked to be even more vigilant then in the past.

The IMAGES below provide some EXAMPLES of intelligence derived from some partisan informant sources.

Part of Polish Partisan AK Activities
Was to Use Informants to Uncover German Capabilities and Report to the Polish Authorities in London
Images above are an EXAMPLE of One Such Intelligence Report of Informant Discovering a CIPHER Code Breach Early 1945

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Intelligence  Report of Informant Discovering a CIPHER Code Breach  Early 1945 pt1 Intelligence  Report of Informant Discovering a CIPHER Code Breach  Early 1945 pt 2 Intelligence  Report of Informant Discovering a CIPHER Code Breach  Early 1945 Polish

Somewhat related to the above, the underground was quick to debrief any escaping POWs who had been conscripted to work for the German war effort and forward these reports to London.

Part of Polish Partisan AK Activities
Was to Debrief POWs who had been Conscripted to Work for German War Effort and Report to the Polish Authorities in London
Image of Intelligence Report with POW info on German new Explosive Material

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Image of Intelligence Report  with POW info on German new Explosive Material

Finally, separate from the monthly reports on active ambushes and attacks, London requested regular reports from the underground on the situational "status-on-the-ground".

The IMAGES below provide some examples of the types of reports generated.

Part of Polish Partisan AK Activities
Was to Report Status On The Ground to the Polish Authorities in London
EXAMPLE of an Intelligence Reports For Months of October and November 1944

Photo Courtesy of: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (UK), Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK
- HS 4/305
Image of Intelligence Report  Regarding Status On The Ground October 1944 Image of Intelligence Report  Regarding Status On The Ground November 1944

In concert with the above, the Allies picked up the pace with regard to their bombardment of key facilties that supported the German war effort. As well increased supply drops to the partisans to support Operation Burza were initiated. Supply drops to support the Warsaw uprising were also initiated.

As a result of the increased Allied Air activity, a number of planes were shot down and some of the allied air crews reached the partisans. So in addition to the uptick in partisan activities as outlined above, we now had the additional task of sheltering and protecting various allied air crews. Although this required a significant amount of attention, these allied air crews were viewed as heroes and everything within reason was done to ensure their safety.

The CHAPTER on the next page provides an overview of "foreigners" (both downed allied air crew and POW escapees) who became evaders some of whom I came in contact with in my area of operation.




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The Life and Times of Hubert Brooks M.C. C.D.


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