This is something that I have wondered about for years.
Begin (as Mieczyslaw Biegun) was in the Polish Army, serving as a Corporal, but in which unit? I remember reading some time ago that it was in the Machine Gun Company of the 13th Infantry Regiment (Rysiow - 13 Pulk Piechoty). But I haven't been able to find any source since.
Can anyone confirm this?
By all accounts Anders gave permission to the Jewish soldiers to leave his command while in Palestine, it was the individual's conscience decision - I can't remember the wording used - yes, the Brits were apoplectic, but Anders was insistent. This is all well documented. (in a way they were the only Polish soldiers who ended up with a homeland to return to after WW2!)
After Monte Casino and the Italian campaign, my Dziadek went to Palestine and joined the Polish Forces in the Middle East (PSZBW) - my mother had been born in Tel Aviv in 1945, Babcia was also in Italy in the PSK in 1944/5, and was sent to the Polish hospital in Tel Aviv as there were complications with the pregnancy. While there in 1947-8 there are stories in the family of how the Polish forces (operating under British command) would encounter old friends from Tockoje/Tatiszczewo/Iran etc. now fighting for Irgun/Haganah and exchange friendly greetings during incursions - while exchanging ineffectual gun fire!
--- In Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com, Dan Ford <cub06h@...> wrote:
> Begin joined Anders Army as a corporal (though he wasn't a PW but a
> straight-up Gulag camper) and crossed to Persia with the troops in May
> 1942. According to Wikipedia, he and other Jewish soldiers were given
> extended leave of absence to stay in Palestine and join the Irgun.
> (Well, they were allowed to stay in Palestine, not necessarily to join
> the Irgun. I would think the British would be opposed to that part!).
> Blue skies! -- Dan Ford USA
> On 1/28/2012 10:55 AM, Andrew Syska wrote:
> > Hello Lucyna,
> > I wonder whether my recollection is correct regarding Manahem Begin.
> > I understood he was attached to our convoy and our unit before
> > "deserting" in Palestine. Below is an extract from my old diary.