August 14, 1980 – Massive labor strikes hit Poland

August 14, 1980 – Massive labor strikes hit Poland

Workers in Gdansk, Poland, seize the Lenin Shipyard and demand pay raises and the right to form a union free from communist control. The massive strike also saw the rise to prominence of labor leader Lech Walesa, who would be a key figure in bringing an end to communist rule in Poland.

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July 4, 1943 – Polish general fighting for justice dies tragically

July 4, 1943 – Polish general fighting for justice dies tragically

On this day in 1943, Polish General Wladyslaw Sikorski dies when his plane crashes less than a mile from its takeoff point at Gibraltar.

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December 9, 1990 – Walesa elected president of Poland

December 9, 1990 – Walesa elected president of Poland

In Poland, Lech Walesa, founder of the Solidarity trade union, wins a landslide election victory, becoming the first directly elected Polish leader.

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