Polish Army in France (Haller's Army)

Polish Army in France during World War I, also known as Haller’s Army (from the name of its Commander-in-Chief), sometimes called the “Blue Army” (from the colour of the uniforms) – Polish military formation established in June 1917 by a decree of President of France R. Poincaré.

Its soldiers were Poles recruited from the French Army, volunteers from the United States, Brazil, and from the Russian expeditionary corps fighting in France, as well as prisoners from the German and Austro-Hungarian armies (ca. 35,000 men). Under the agreement between the French government and the Polish National Committee signed on 28 September 1918, the Polish Army in France was recognised as “the only independent, allied, and cooperative Polish army.” It included military formations created outside the country, for instance in Russia; the 1st Rifle Regiment fought in Champagne (July–August 1918), while the 1st Rifle Division took part in battles between Rambervillers and Raon-l’Étape since October 1918. The position of the commander was held first by General L. Archinard, and then by General J. Haller since 4 October 1918.

In 1919, it had ca. 68,500 soldiers; the officers were French (1,402 officers) and Polish (1,239 officers). Between April and June 1919, the army was deployed to Poland. It participated in the Polish-Ukrainian military operations in eastern Lesser Poland and in Volhynia and was later kept on standby on the Western Front in case of potential German aggression (June 1919). In September 1919, it was incorporated into the Polish Army.

The entry was written on the basis of source materials of the PWN printing house.

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