12th Infantry Division (Poland)

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Polish 12th Kresy Infantry Division (Polish: 12 Kresowa Dywizja Piechoty), was a tactical unit of the Polish Army in the interbellum period, which was stationed in Tarnopol. It consisted of several regiments, scattered in towns of Podolia:

  • 51st Kresy Rifles Infantry Regiment of Giuseppe Garibaldi, stationed in Brzeżany and Czortkow,
  • 52nd Kresy Rifles Infantry Regiment, stationed in Zloczow,
  • 54th Kresy Rifles Infantry Regiment, stationed in Tarnopol,
  • 12th Kresy Light Artillery Regiment, stationed in Zloczow,
  • 12th Heavy Artillery Regiment, stationed in Tarnopol.

Polish September Campaign[edit]

In June 1939 the Division, under General Gustaw Paszkiewicz, was ordered to remain in reserve, and became part of the southern wing of the Prusy Army. In early September 1939, it was transported from Tarnopol to the area of Kielce.

On September 7, 12th I.D. left its positions by Skarżysko-Kamienna and headed towards Iłża. There, it engaged in combat with 3rd Light Division of the Wehrmacht. In the following days, the unit fought a bloody battle with German XV Light Corps of General Hermann Hoth. On September 9, Polish soldiers managed to get to German positions, but were stopped by tanks. As a result, the Poles panicked, the Division was cut off from the line of the Vistula and as such ceased to exist. Its remnants managed to cross the river and were recreated as brigades, taking part in the Battle of Tomaszów Lubelski, where they capitulated on September 27.

1944[edit]

In the first half of 1944, when Operation Tempest was prepared, the 12th I.D. was recreated in the area of Tarnopol and Lwów.

Polish Peoples' Army[edit]

The 12 Infantry Division (pl:12 Dywizja Piechoty (LWP)) was reformed within the People's Army of Poland in 1945, as a part of the Second Army. Its main task was to protect the border in the region of Szczecin. A combined infantry regiment from the division took part in Operation Vistula in 1947, against the Ukrainian Insurgent Army.

In December 1958 the 12th Infantry Division was reorganized as a mechanised division (pl:12 Dywizja Zmechanizowana).[1] Headquarters was located as Szczecin.

As of 2009-2011, the 12th Mechanised Division comprises:

The division is part of the NATO-aligned Multinational Corps North East.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Order No. 0010/Org MON. from October 2, 1958

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 49°51′05″N 18°18′35″E / 49.851331°N 18.309671°E / 49.851331; 18.309671