Anarchism in Poland
||This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the Polish Wikipedia. (April 2013)|
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Prior to Polish independence from the Russian Empire, several anarchist organizations emerged within the area that would become the Second Polish Republic. The first of these, known as "The Struggle", formed in Białystok in 1903. In the following years similar organizations established themselves in Nieznow, Warsaw, Łódź, Siedlce, Częstochowa, Kielce, and other towns. One of the most active, a group known as "International", had its base in Warsaw. This group, composed of Jewish workers, organized strikes throughout the city during the Polish insurrection of 1905.
The tsarist regime (which controlled much of Poland before 1914) acted with a high level of despotism. Firing on demonstrating workers was a common occurrence. In January 1906 the authorities arrested sixteen members of the International group and shot them without trial. The strong repression of these groups led them to engage in terrorist acts such as assassinating police officers or the owners of large factories. Many also robbed banks to gain funds. Meanwhile, anarchists in Poland began to be influenced by anarcho-syndicalism. The followers of anarcho-syndicalism rejected terrorism and organised revolutionary trade unions and propaganda activity. The most significant Polish theorists of anarchism and anarcho-syndicalism included those of Edward Abramowski, Jan Wacław Machajski, Augustyn Wróblewski and Rafał Górski.