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Jersey City: Katyn Memorial - 9/11 plaque

Andrzej Pitynski's Katyn Memorial, sitting at Montgomery Street at Exchange Place in Jersey City, honors the victims of the Katyn Massacre. A few weeks after Nazi Germany invaded Poland in 1939, the Soviets rounded up 15,400 Polishofficers, intellectual leaders and prisoners of war for a mass execution in Russia's Katyn Forest. For years, the Soviets blamed the Nazi's for the execution and it wasn't until 1989 that the Krlemlin finally acknowledged Soviet NKVD responsibility.


The bronze soldier, bayoneted rifle sprung from his back, stands atop a granite base which holds Katyn soil.


The east side of the pedestal has a bronze relief of starving masses to depict the two million Polish civilians who were relocated to Siberia and perished.


In an earlier time the monument commemorating wars in another country might have seemed inappropriate given its postcard view spot on the waterfront opposite the Downtown NYC skyline. But after September 11, it now it takes on special significance. In fact, the Memorial was almost pulled down to be replaced by the city's 9/11 memorial. However, after an outcry from the city's sizeable Polish community, a plaque was instead donated by S. Pazul to commemorate the attack.

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Taken on October 27, 2006