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was a Polish
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...
independence fighter, politician and Polish Army general.
Sosnkowski served successively as founder and first commander of Związek Walki Czynnej
Związek Walki Czynnej was a Polish secret military organization founded in 1908 by Józef Piłsudski, Marian Kukiel, Kazimierz Sosnkowski and Władysław Sikorski, all members of the Combat Organization of the Polish Socialist Party's Revolutionary...
(the Active Combat Association), chief of staff of the 1st Brigade of the Polish Legions
Polish Legions was the name of Polish armed forces created in August 1914 in Galicia. Thanks to the efforts of KSSN and the Polish members of the Austrian parliament, the unit became an independent formation of the Austro-Hungarian Army...
, Polish minister of military affairs, vice-president of Poland, commander of the Związek Walki Zbrojnej
Związek Walki Zbrojnej was an underground army formed in Poland following its invasion in September 1939 by Germany and the Soviet Union that opened World War II.The precursor to the ZWZ was the Service...
(Association for Armed Struggle) resistance organization, and Inspector General of the Armed Forces (Polish Commander-in-Chief, 1943–44).
Sosnkowski, over his career, used a number of noms de guerre
, including "Baca
" (Polish mountaineer term for "shepherd"), "Godziemba
" (the name of his herditary coat-of-arms
A coat of arms is a unique heraldic design on a shield or escutcheon or on a surcoat or tabard used to cover and protect armour and to identify the wearer. Thus the term is often stated as "coat-armour", because it was anciently displayed on the front of a coat of cloth...
" (Polish for "Joseph"), "Ryszard
" ("Richard"), "Szef
Sosnkowski was married to Jadwiga Sosnkowska. They had five children.
Prohibition of bacteriological weapons
In 1925, the Polish Permanent Representative to the League of Nations, General Kazimierz Sosnkowski, initiated the adoption of the first international instrument addressing Biological Weapons of Mass Destruction – the Geneva Protocol for the Prohibition of Poisonous Gases and Bacteriological Methods of Warfare.
Honours and awards
- Order of the White Eagle (posthumously, November 11, 1995 by Lech Walesa)
- Commander's Cross of the Order of Virtuti Militari (previously awarded the Gold Cross and Silver Cross]]
- Grand Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta
- Cross of Independence with Swords
- Cross of Valour - four times
- Gold Cross of Merit
- Cross of Liberty, Class II (Estonia)
- Legion of Honour (France)
- Order of the British Empire
The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of chivalry established on 4 June 1917 by George V of the United Kingdom. The Order comprises five classes in civil and military divisions...
- Order of the Cross of the Eagle
The Order of the Cross of the Eagle was instituted in 1928 by the Estonian Defence League to commemorate the tenth anniversary of Estonian independence. It was adopted as a state order in 1936.The Order of the Cross of the Eagle is bestowed to give recognition for military services and services...
, Class I (Estonia, 1933)
- Academic Golden Laurel of the Polish Academy of Literature for oratory.