Will Poland Have to Defend Europe from Islam Again? by Gunnar Heinsohn

Europeans should be happy that Poland takes’ its role as the gateway to Europe seriously. From Gunnar Heinsohn at americanthinker.com:

In 1621, the city of Chocim in today’s western Ukraine witnessed a mighty battle between the Polish-Lithuanian Empire and an invading Ottoman army.  Chocim is rightly remembered by Poland as a victory, although the conflict ended in a political draw.  But this stalemate was fought by only about 50,000 men against three times as many Turks and Mongols.  After the death of the Polish commander-in-chief, Jan Karol Chodkiewicz, it was Stanisław Lubomirski (1583–1649), not yet forty years old, who turned the tide in favor of Warsaw.

Chocim was not the first battle in this war against Muslim aggression.  Already in 1619, Poland’s King Sigismund III Wasa (1566/1587–1632) had saved the ruler Ferdinand II (1578/1619–1637) by defeating Hungarian vassals of the sultan, saving Vienna and Germany’s imperial crown.

Chocim prevented a further expansion of the caliphate, but much of Hungary remained Turkish, and the sultans were only waiting for a new opportunity to push westward.  In 1672, with 80,000 men, Muslim forces were able to reconquer Chocim and entire Polish provinces.  Against Hetman Jan Sobieski (1629/1674–1696), however, the Ottomans suffered a second defeat at Chocim in 1673.

The significance of these Polish accomplishments did not go unnoticed in the free Republic of the Netherlands.  Dutch artist Romeyn de Hooghe (1645–1708) — forefather of all bloggers with his engraved texts critical of the times — sensed the deeper meaning of Poland’s victories at Chocim.  For the first time, the Occident was now able to defend itself.  That is why de Hooghe immortalized Sobieski in 1674, showing him as a Hercules and savior of Europe.

The Dutch intellectual was not mistaken.  In 1683, Sobieski, king of Poland since 1674, risked everything in a do-or-die battle against the Turkish army besieging Vienna, whose emperor, Leopold I (1640/1658–1705), had already run away.  This valiant defense of western Europe was the result of Sobieski’s grasp of the continent’s strategic situation.  Despite the entreaties of his revered French wife, he had refused an alliance with Louis XIV (1638/1643-1715), who was an ally of the caliphate.  Violent encounters with the sultans and their mega-armies, which Poland had experienced in horrific ways, forbade any such favor for the “Sun King” of France.

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