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Camp of great poland

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Camp of Great Poland (Polish: Obóz Wielkiej Polski, OWP) was a far-right,[1] nationalist[1] political organization of National Democracy in interwar Poland.

Camp of Great Poland was founded on 4 December 1926 in Poznań by Popular National Union (Związek Ludowo-Narodowy, ZLN) and other organizations of right-wing National Democracy political camp, led by Roman Dmowski, to unite Polish right-wing organizations and oppose sanacja regime, which gained power following Józef Piłsudski's May Coup in 1926.[2] After merging with National Pupulist Union in 1928 OWP retained its autonomy within newly established National Party (Polish: Stronnictwo Narodowe).[3]

In 1927 youth branch of the organization was established (Polish: Ruch Młodych Obozu Wielkiej Polski).,[4] which virtually dominated OWP by 1928.[5] OWP positions in Polish universities among students were especially strong,[5][6] it also gained popularity among workers and the lower middle class.[7] In January 1930 Camp of Great Poland had 35,000 members,[7] in May 1932 its membership reached 120,000.[3][7] By 1933 OWP claimed to have a quarter of a million followers.[5][7]

Outbreaks of the anti-Jewish violence in Eastern Galicia in 1927 led the organization to be banned in that region that year.[8] After a further wave of nationwide violence in 1933 OWP eventually banned in entire Poland.[8] Government, alarmed by rapid growth of OWP, banned the organization together with its youth movement[4] on 28 March 1933.[9] on the grounds that these organizations threatened stability of the state.[4] After dissolution of the organization, even more radical young members of OWP formed the National Radical Camp (Polish: Obóz Narodowo Radykalny, ONR).[10] ONR would be banned soon after its establishment, in 1934.[8]

Camp of Great Poland was led by the Great Council (Polish: Wielka Rada). The head of the Council, with the title of the Great Camp-maker (Polish: Wielki Oboźny) was Roman Dmowski; other notable members included Tadeusz Bielecki, Marian Borzęcki, Stanisław Haller and Roman Rybarski.[11]

Camp of Great Poland supported strongly religious corporative authoritarianism,[5] borrowing some ideas from Italian fascism.[12]

OWP did not pursue its goals on the political scene, increasingly controlled by Piłsudskiite Sanacja; instead it aimed to create a violent, revolutionary movement aimed at toppling the government.[11] Camp of Great Poland even had its own fighting squads organized.[3][12]

OWP front organization, the Green Ribbon League (Polish: Liga Zielonej Wstążki) actively propagated a boycott of the Jewish-owned businesses.[13] In early 1930s OWP campaigned for numerus nullus, a policy of complete exclusion of Jewish students and academics from Polish universities.[14] OWP anti-Jewish activities weren't however limited to political means only. OWP openly incited anti-Jewish riots,[15] and its youth movement advocated violence against Jewish students.[4] OWP and related youth organizations were engaged in violent attacks against Jews.[3][13] Those attacks eventually led the Polish government to ban the organization.[8]

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