POLAND SUFFERS FIRST
|BAGHDAD, Iraq Poland has suffered its first combat death in Iraq today when a Polish major was fatally wounded in an ambush south of the city of Baghdad. The Polish officer was wounded when insurgents attacked a convoy of 16 Polish soldiers returning from a promotion ceremony for Iraqi civilian defense trainees near Baghdad.
Major HIERONIM KUPCZYK, 44, died later at a military hospital in Karbala, as reported by the Polish Defense Ministry out of Warsaw. None of the other Polish soldiers in this convoy were killed or wounded, according to the Polish Defense Minister JERZY SZMAJDZINSKI. " This tragic event proves that the situation in Iraq is getting complicated," Szmajdzinski told reporters in Warsaw. " The level of professionalism of the terrorists is increasing."
The United States, Britain and now Poland are the only coalition members to have suffered combat deaths in Iraq to this date, although one member of the multi-national forces from Denmark was killed in May in a friendly fire mishap. Currently, Poland has 2400 soldiers in Iraq and are presently in charge of a large area of south-central Iraq where approximately 9500 soldiers from various other nations help to maintain security in this ever turbulent country.
SPECIAL TO - WWW.HISTORICALMILITARIA.COM - 6 NOVEMBER 2003