Ocalony z „nieludzkiej ziemi” – losy inspektora Policji Państwowej Józefa Torwińskiego
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Salvaged from the „Inhuman Land” – the History of Józef Torwiński, State Police InspectorInspector Józef Torwiński was born on 19 March 1890 in Lwów. He began serving in the State Police in 1919 and in February 1926 attained the rank of inspector at the headquarters of the VIII Lwów Police District; subsequently, he held the post of commander of the X Stanislawów Police District (from 1927), the II Łódź Police District (from 1928), and the I Warsaw Police District (from March 1939). After the outbreak of World War II Torwiński reached Kostopol, which the Soviet army occupied on 18 September. He was dispatched to a distributive camp in Kozielsk and then to a special NKVD camp in Ostashkovo. Torwiński was one of the 395 surviving Polish prisoners of war interned in Kozielsk, Starobielsk and Ostashkovo, and found himself in Pavlishchev Bor, from which he was transferred to Griaztsov on the Volga. After the signing of the Sikorski– Mayski pact, in the second half of October 1941 Torwiński was sent to Penza and entrusted with the task of establishing an institution that would direct discharged Poles to centres created for the formation of the Polish Armed Forces in the USSR; soon, he arrived in Buzuluk, Novosibirsk, and Yangiyul. After the evacuation of the Polish army from the Soviet Union Torwiński stayed in a camp for civilian refugees in Tehran. At the time, he was head of the General Department of Security and Order of the Social Care Delegature. Having left Iran, he lived in Africa (from the middle of 1947) and then returned to Poland where he settled down in Szczecin. Here, he became the object of interest of the local Voivodeship Public Security Office and in January 1951 was detained and interrogated, sharing copious information about the pre–September 1939 activity of the State Police. Two months later plans were made to use Torwiński as an informer. At the beginning of 1954 he was investigated by the functionaries of the Voivodeship Public Security Office in Łódź, who detained him in Szczecin upon the basis of the Decree of 22 January 1946 about responsibility for defeat in September 1939 and the Nazification of state life. Two months later, however, Torwiński was released owing to his ill heath. A further investigation was deemed purposeless due to the suspect’s age, the absence of incriminating evidence, and cooperation with the Szczecin Security Office (1949–1954). Preserved documents show that Torwiński was included in a survey campaign conducted in 1969 upon the order of the Second Department in the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
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