The magic of the Vistula. Year 1920 (Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland)

Miracle on the Vistula.  Year 1920 ('Gazeta Wyborcza', Польша)

18/08/1995. If we lose this battle, the world would have looked the other — without Poland.

Head of the Country and Chief Jozef Pilsudski is not intended to be expected. He dreamed of a resurrection davneshney Commonwealth, a federation of the peoples of the Polish, Lithuanian, Ukrainian and Belarusian (it should be seen that in the original Poles, Lithuanians and Ukrainians called the nations, and Belarusians — "lyudom" — approx. Lane.). Regardless of political goals in 1919, a sober calculation of the military sought to push the boundaries of the brain culprit partitions of Poland as far as possible to the east.

In winter 1919 the Polish units took up positions just a bit east of the current borders of Poland.

In March, anticipating a Soviet attack, a group of troops of General Sheptitskogo ran across the Niemen, threw the Bolshevik forces occupied Slonim and the suburbs of Lida and Baranovitch. Polish troops fled to the south of the river and canal Yaseldu Oginsky, took Pińsk and dug too far to the east.

In April, a powerful group of Polish troops under the personal command of Pilsudski defeated the grouping of the Bolshevik troops and occupied Vilna, Lida, Novogrudek, Baranovichi.

In August 1919, began the second coming of the Polish in the north-east. Polish forces took Minsk Belarus and braked too far to the east, on the strip and the Berezina river Dvina. In January 1920, a group of troops of General Rydz-Rydz took Dvinsk on the Latvian border, and then transferred to the city of the Latvian army.

Quite to deal with the Bolsheviks Pilsudski wanted to Ukraine. The defeat in the south of the main forces of the Red Army and the border on the Dnepr had to give the East Pax Polonica, peace on the criteria of the Commonwealth. And one more thing — the revival of Ukraine under the protection of the Polish fighter.

The bloody battles of the Polish Army with the Ukrainians for the Lions in Eastern Malopolska, in the Volyn region fell silent in the middle of 1919. Before the advent of a strong Poland signed an alliance with the leader of the troops Naddneprovskoy Ukraine, Simon Petlyura chieftain, who had previously escaped with his troops on the Polish side of the front of the persecution of the counterrevolutionary army of General Denikin.

This fight was inevitably. Unless August 1920 near Warsaw, then a while back — here and there on the far eastern Crecy. We had to start a decisive battle with the Bolsheviks, regardless of whether we would have attacked them or waiting patiently to attack from the east. We had to give this majestic battle, as Poland's independence after 123 years of slavery could not settle "for a cup of tea", in the silence of offices, diplomatic negotiations.

At the turn of 1919 and 1920, Moscow and Warsaw are arranging the world. Both sides, but did not trust each other. And both were right.

Jozef Pilsudski wished for peace, but after the defeat of the main forces of the Red Army, concentrated on the border with Poland.
Moscow wanted peace, but after the establishment of the Vistula Polish Russian Republic.
In war all make mistakes — the winner is the one who makes fewer mistakes.

Beginning in April 1920, coming to Kiev, the Polish military made more errors than their opponent. Exploration incorrectly said that the most powerful group of Bolshevik troops are in Ukraine, underestimated, but a high concentration of the Red Army in the north, in the direction of the Bialystok-vilnensko. When it was clear that the Bolsheviks were preparing for the coming of the north, the Commander decided that no matter what, previously hit by Kiev, surround and beat the Russian army in the south and later to transfer power to the northern front. It seemed real, but on the condition that the Bolsheviks will stubbornly defend Kyiv.

But the Bolsheviks did not have allowed himself to catch the trap. Polish first blow, though successful, was directed into the void — the boiler under Malin has closed only a day later than it should have, and it gave a chance to escape the Bolsheviks. The coming to Kiev was still in one fell swoop into the void. The Bolsheviks defended the city has not retreated to the east. Russian army, as so many times before, and later bailed immeasurable place of.

Polish strategic mistake in its own calculations on the liberation uprising of the Ukrainians. Those are not going to join the army Petlyury.
— Ally of ours — now it was the Poles — was insincere: read and sign one, and wondered different! The most honest of them was Pilsudski, and he intended to, at best, to add some "autonomous" or "federalizovannuyu" Ukraine — then wrote the minister in the government of Ivan Petlyury Feschenko-Chapivsky. So Makarov, Kiev expedition has lost all meaning.

The last error was the Polish command has not taken seriously urgently call on the Ukrainian front Cavalry Army Seeds Budennogo. When she began to walk around the rear of the Polish, it was too late. In the south, the retreat began.

The Kremlin did not make mistakes at first. The army was prepared diligently. Shortages in arms were filled with trophies captured from the White Guard and allied troops. The number of Red Army was increased to more than a million fighter, improved discipline. The Bolsheviks in Russia fueled nationalist sentiment. The motto of the defense "and independent of Great Russia" they lured into the army of the former royal officers. In particular, a lot of them come under the banner of reddish after the famous royal proclamation of General Brusilov, who called forgotten resentment and loss and join the Bolsheviks.

Before the advent of the decisive command on the northern front has the best Russian general who crushed the General Denikin, — Misha Tukhachevsky.
Russian strike designed Tukhachevskii crumpled left-wing front. Regardless of the sample counter Poles gave one after another of the defense — and the line of the former German fortifications of the First World War, and a line of the Niemen, canal Oginsky, Schara, Yasedly, in the end, the line of the Bug and naplakali.

Tukhachevsky's army faced the Warsaw.

Later, after many years, the participants of the war tried to describe and explain their actions. Mikhail Tukhachevsky argued that he had the courage to storm Warsaw from the north-east and north, so how exactly there, in his view, were the main Polish forces defending the approaches to Gdansk corridor through which the West was going to supply the Poles. Polish generals and military historians in Tukhachevsky behold the concept of something else:

"As for me, I associated the campaign Tukhachevskogo the Vistula with the campaign as the Vistula General Paskevich in 1830. I even argued that the concept and direction of the operation are taken, apparently, from the archives of the Polish-Russian War of 1830 ", — said Marshal Jozef Pilsudski.

The then command of the Red Army consisted of regular officers of the royal army. Royal officers in military academies thoroughly studied the history of wars, including the Warsaw maneuver Marshal Paskevich.

Mikhail Tukhachevsky was to know about the storming of Warsaw in 1831 for yet another reason.

Great-grandfather Misha Tukhachevskogo Alexander Tukhachevsky in 1831 commanded a regiment in Olonets II Corps Gen. Kroyttsa. In the first days of the storming of Warsaw regiment Tukhache
vskogo headed columns II Corps stormed the southern side of the Redoubt Ordon. When Tukhachevskogo battalions stormed the ramparts Redoubt, an explosion destroyed the powder magazine strengthening and buried together with intercessors more than 100 Russian soldiers and officers. Colonel Alexander Tukhachevsky, badly wounded, was taken prisoner and died on the same day.

On the south side of Redoubt Ordon attacked another convoy of Russian corps, and in its ranks, Colonel Liprandi, brother-in-law of Colonel Alexander Tukhachevsky. After the explosion of Redoubt and destruction of the Russian convoy commander, Colonel Liprandi took command for the next day and broke a second line of defense between the Polish and slingshots Freedom of Jerusalem. He was in the midst of the first Russian broke into the city.

In 1831, the creator of the plan, under which the Russian army had to walk along the right bank of the Vistula River until the Prussian border, where cross to the left in store, come back and attack Warsaw, was Emperor Nicholas I. Field Marshal Paskevich with a heavy heart took a royal plan. He knew that, going down the Vistula, opens its own left flank and runs the risk of being overwhelmed by Polish troops, concentrated in the Modlin Fortress.

Plan of attack on the left flank Russian immediately obmozgovat most outstanding campaign strategist in 1831, General Ignatius Prondzhinsky. But the chief of General Jan Skshinetsky — as usual when the chance arose only win a decisive victory — preferred gamletstvovat, open a discussion subtleties dinner with a personal chef and pose for painters.

Great-grandson of Colonel Alexander Tukhachevsky, Misha, in 1920, the main forces of the army and three cavalry corps, threw to the north, in the wake of Field Marshal Paskevich.

But then we have, fortunately, were the leaders of flesh and blood. Located in the area of 5 Modlin Army General Wladyslaw Sikorski for the next day after a weak, the central group of the Red Army began particular coming to Warsaw and took Radzymin, knocked on the north, the main force Tukhachevsky. General Sikorski century-old general plan Prondzhinskogo embodied amazing. Although the five Army was three times smaller fighter and guns than the Bolshevik armies, Gen. Sikorsky's Napoleonic little maneuvering forces, in turn, broke the enemy forces and forced them to retreat.

203 Lancers with a truly daring Kresova a minute flew into Tsekhanov where fallen into a panic Russian army commanders burned station. The most powerful group of troops Tukhachevsky was broken, scattered, devoid of communication and reserves that we spent in combat. Although she still had significant advantages over the troops of General Sikorski, but in an important moment of the battle could no longer threaten Warsaw.

Tukhachevsky first wanted to break up the main Polish forces who look forward to the north of Warsaw. In particular the attack on the capital, he sent only one army, and she had an obvious advantage in comparison with the Polish forces defending Warsaw suburb. August 13, 1920 the Bolsheviks knocked on Radzymin. Thus began the Battle of Warsaw.

Later Radzymin passed from hand to hand. Russian and Polish thrown into battle last reserves. There's only fought furiously, but the battles were fought also in a wide arc on the outskirts of Warsaw. It was not a spectacular collision tremendous masses, faster number of local fights. Desperate and bloody. Bolshevik forces appropriated the news that has just captured from the tower of the church can be seen roofs of Warsaw. The Poles knew nowhere to retreat. Demoralized by defeat and retreat troops fought at first not very brave, they are often spanned panic. The morale appeared after the first success, after the battle went teams of volunteers.

"In the ranks of the fighters went to the priests as chaplains and nurses. Many of them came back crowned orders. Gentry went, medium and small, almost everything on their own stallions. From my family went four Kakovskih, two Ossowski, two Willmann, Yanovsky, almost everyone who was able to keep the gun. I went all the intellectuals, students and high-school students from the 6th grade. Massively went factory workers, "- wrote Cardinal Alexander Kakovsky.

In defense of Warsaw was attended by 80 thousand volunteers.

The emblem of the battle for Warsaw became a priest Skorupko death. After the battle, wrote that he had died, leading fighter in the attack, holding a cross in front of him, like a bayonet. So figured it Kossak.

It was different. The young priest Stanislaw Scorupco appeared and became a volunteer chaplain I Battalion 236 Infantry Regiment Veteran Volunteer Army named 1863. He did not want to give up some minor volunteers under fire. Commander, Lieutenant Slovikovskaya, persuaded to allow him to go to the counter in the middle of a fighter. When the priest had died from a shot to the head, the cross was on his chest, under his uniform.

"Miracle" to their minds contemporaries, it happened on the Vistula, but it could happen earlier, far to the east, the channel Oginsky, or on the Neman and the Bug naplakali. Immediately after the start of the coming of Tukhachevsky, Marshal Jozef Pilsudski had intended to do in the east of what is, after all, made on the Vistula: Shock Army to concentrate on the left wing Bolsheviks, under the protection of the town well defended and unexpected attack to crush the enemy's left flank, cutting him with all this an escape route.

Twice Marshal is not possible, as the Polish troops gave the planned resistance bands. God loves a trinity — a blow to the Wieprz (river Wieprz — right tributary of the Vistula River, approx. Trans.) Transformed the campaign Tukhachevskogo the Vistula River in full rout.

The fact that the attack on the open left flank of the Red Army, Marshal Pilsudski obmozgovat for a long time previously, one hundred percent refutes the insinuation, as if the creator of the concept of attack Wieprz was a French General Weygand counselor or someone from Poland, of course, delicious, shtabnikov.

However, it is impossible not to see that the above maneuver Pilsudski vital spirit of General Pilsudski (it also saw the German historians). It was the same idea, only transferred to a much more lengthy battle.

General Sikorski and Marshal Pilsudski took historical revenge for the November defeat of a century ago (November Uprising 1830 — approx. Trans.). His battles they honored the memory of General Prondzhinskogo the fairest of all possible methods.

The problem with the "Miracle on the Vistula" lies in the fact that there was no miracle.

The Bolshevik strategy, approaching the Vistula River, began to make fatal mistakes, but it was not the result of interference of Providence, and faster, more human circling the revolutionary goals of success. Tukhachevsky, convinced that the Polish army was completely demoralized and scattered his forces and rushed unconscious to the west, not worrying about supplies and left for Nieman reserves.

Warsaw and Poland, of course, helped out a change of plans Alexander Yegorov, commander of the Bolshevik troops in the Ukraine and Volyn. According to the plans of winter 1920, he had to work around areas in Belarus and after the transition hit the far south-east of Warsaw. Along the way he had touched a Polish group on Wieprz. Would not it be counter Pilsudski, Warsaw, taken in a pincer movement, was to fall — superior in force joined Russian fronts would be very large. But the Bolsheviks immediately before the Battle of Warsaw turned-Ukrainian Volyn front of their own troops in Lviv, on Galicia. In a sense of fear to Romania. But first, in their own imaginations, they have beheld Warsaw captured by troops Tukhachevsky and Yegorov — marching through Hungary to Yugoslavia.

On the Vistula Polish fighter fought bravely, the generals have ruled professionally and efficiently. Rarely
in the history of our new it happened, but it's not magic.

Also, he hit Wieprz was not a miracle. Yes, it was a masterpiece of military thought. From the chaos of defeat and retreat Pilsudski took the best part, armed them and concentrated on the far side so wise that, despite the general superiority of the forces of Tukhachevsky, at the direction of impact with Wieprz Poles were 5 times stronger.
And, in the end, the concentration is not covered with troops on the Wieprz not mean that everything has been put on one card.

The young mathematician Stefan Mazurkiewicz, then rector of the Institute Jozef Pilsudski in Warsaw and the chairman of the Polish Mathematical Society, transcribed Russian radio code. During the Battle of Warsaw Polish intelligence knew the intentions of the Russian command and the position of the best parts of the Red Army.

Our victory was not inevitable. Tukhachevsky's army at Warsaw were more than a third of the number. It was enough, so their commanders escaped some of our own mistakes. It was enough, so that one of the three directions of the Battle of Warsaw Polish soldier of fortune changed.

At the Battle of Warsaw foreign observers had the impression that Polish fighter was rescued from the Bolshevik invasion of Western Europe. Similarly conceived in Poland.

In August 1920 the Bolsheviks, but had no intention of helping the German revolution, as it has long since been suppressed. On the border of East Prussia, September 1, 1920 on the initiative of the Russian Commissioner met two: the German police and the Red Army. Russian commissioner said Ivanitskii own interlocutor that Moscow after defeating Poland disavows the Versailles treaty and return the border in 1914 between Germany and Russia.

In Warsaw, the enemies of Marshal Pilsudski accused him of being. that in the Warsaw Cathedral he has hidden the phone with which he connects every evening with Trotsky in the Kremlin and gives him a furtive military. Trotsky was the phone, but he was connected with Germany. August 20, 1920 Russian special telephone line stretched from Moscow through the occupied Polish countryside to Eastern Prussia.

There, the Germans have connected it to the band Krulevets-Berlin, walking along the sea bed. Thus was created the Soviet-Weimar Alliance, whose goal was the fourth partition of Poland.

Line turned in 5 days after losing the Battle of Warsaw.

Western Europe in 1920 was safe. But in the case of the defeat of Poland had no chance in the Baltic republics and the Balkans, not excluding Yugoslavia.

Near Warsaw, we helped their independence, the elite, the future.

But first, we helped ourselves.

From the perspective of the past fifty years, it seems that in the worst case, slavery would have lasted only 20 years longer. But it would not be a mild terror 40s and 50s. What could be a new order, showed the mass killings in Bialystok and Radzymin. Soviet Poland in the 30s, most likely encountered the fate of Russian Ukraine. There's a new order built on the graves of millions of victims.

In general, after the Bolsheviks seized the army to Central Europe, the political history of our continent, probably would have gone very differently. For us — disastrously.

The accounts for the victory in 1920 had to pay later.

Of the fighting on the Eastern Front Polish generals made a very unsafe for the upcoming conclusions.

The clash with the Russian cavalry approved shtabnikov in the belief that a more effective army is a high-spirited horse. During the Battle of Warsaw the Polish side had the advantage in tanks, but the command was not able to use them as necessary, and later they underestimated the tank forces. In September 1939, we had a lot of lancers, not a lot of tanks.

In 1920, we had an advantage in the air, including through South-American volunteers. The effectiveness of the Polish aviation appreciated and even overestimated Tukhachevsky and Budennyi. Babel in the "Red Cavalry" described the weakness in the Polish aircraft.

Polish commanders were not able to really great to use aircraft, they also realized what a tremendous value will have aircraft in the future. They made sure this after nineteen years.

From the first day or the Battle of Warsaw in the battle for Radzymin participated Grodno Regiment Lithuanian-Belarusian Division under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Bronislaw Bohaterovicha. After three days of incessant fighting Radzymin was recaptured. In the middle part, which entered the city, and a battalion of the regiment was Colonel Bohaterovicha.

In 1943, the body of General Bohaterovicha dug in the Katyn Forest. He was one of the 2-Polish generals killed there.

In the war of 1920, Joseph Stalin was the Commissioner of Ukrainian factions of the Red Army. During the fighting, he exposed himself to ridicule his own incompetence. His self-will has led to the fact that during the Battle of Warsaw part of the Bolshevik troops from the south of Poland did not move to Warsaw, which probably would have ended disastrously for us. Then he removed the Russian military leaders, eyewitnesses own ineptitude. When asked whether impacted by Stalin's decision to destroy the Polish officers in 1940, the memory of the year 1920 seems to have never received a response.

What soldier dying wish?

2-things probably.

That he died for a reason. To be remembered.

Sixteen-and seventeen-year students, volunteers from Ossovo, we thanked wonderful. Their malehankih cemetery with a chapel in a forest clearing in Ossovo — it seems the most beautiful resting place of Polish fighter, what I beheld.

Groomed formidable soldier graves in the cemetery and the chapel in Radzymin.

But, in general, little is left of that battle.

Several moderate monuments in the villages and towns.

Many fundamental areas not designated or described. There is not even folklore breezed historic places. Bar "Under the Bolshevik" in Radzymin not so long ago renamed "Bar and Restaurant." Radzymin — not Waterloo, living only on the memoirs of the Napoleonic battle, complete panoramas, exhibitions, souvenirs and tour guides. But Radzymin not yet Waterloo and so as a result of the fight to turn the course of history could not — in 1815, Napoleon would have lost anyway.

And three quarters of a century ago back at Warsaw Poland was saved, half of Europe, maybe the world.

That's all.

The text of the applied work and memoirs of Jozef Pilsudski, Kutsheby Tadeusz Wladyslaw Sikorski, Marianne Kukel, Alexandra Kakovskogo, Misha Tukhachevskogo Mark Tarczyńska, Arthur Leynvanda, Henrik Bulhac, Mieczyslaw Slovikovskaya.

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