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Russian Tanks! No Thanks! - Solidarność (Solidarity)

Article about: Three Solidarity fund raising issues: Left: Represents a motorway T-81 with Our Lady of Częstochowa appearing on the horizon? Top Right: Radia Wolna Europa - Marking 35 years of Radio F

  1. #1

    Default Russian Tanks! No Thanks! - Solidarność (Solidarity)

    Any thoughts as to who produced these "protest" button badges? I assume they appeared at the time the communist regime was collapsing across Eastern Europe in the 1980s? Anyone seen them before or know if others were also produced?

    They were a very inexpensive purchase when I got bored

    Although the badge message is Russian, the tank units deployed in Czechoslovakia 1968 were from Warsaw pact allies, Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria and East Germany rather than Russians...
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

  2. #2
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    The character aboard the tank depicted on the right hand badge is holding a Czech flag. Interesting pieces, thanks for showing them.
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  3. #3

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    The two badges I originally posted I have just found out were produced by or for Solidarność (Solidarity) movement in Poland. I have just picked up another version of the "Russian/Soviet Tanks, no thanks badge" along with two others.

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    LUDU MJ LUDU CZEM CI..... People of my people what have ....... Opening line of a Polish religious Improperia attributed to Fr. Michael Martin Mioduszewski 1838 - "People of my people, what have I done?"

    The man illustrated on the badge is Edward Gierek (see below) who was Communist Party organiser and leader in Poland, and served as first secretary from 1970 to 1980. Gierek was held responsible for increasing economic hardships of Poland during the latter part of the 1970's and for Poland taking on unsustainable foreign loans that were were used to prop up the ailing country which ultimately led to the economic crisis that Poland experienced in the 1980s. Hence the sardonic use of the line, "People of my people, what have I done?".

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    SOVIET TANKS ? - NO, THANKS !
    Meaning no repeat of Warsaw Pact forces invasion of Czechoslovakia during Prague Spring 1968. Ironically the tanks were Polish rather than Soviet.

    ELEMENT - EA - ANTYSOCJALISTYCZNY
    Mainly "aniti-socialist" student activists
    Last edited by StefanM; 12-04-2013 at 05:54 PM.
    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

  4. #4
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    Never seen them before but great badges.

  5. #5

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    I know they are not militaria but I am increasingly interested in these cheap throw-away protest pieces as they represent a period of momentous sociopolitical change that led to the ending of the cold war and to freedoms in Eastern Europe that we in the west took for granted. For example I was able to read books on Polish WWII history that would have landed me in jail for many years had I lived in Poland rather than England. I sometimes forget how fortunate it was that my father never returned to Poland after WWII. It was a great shame that he died before his beloved homeland was set free again.
    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

  6. #6

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    I think these are great little items.

    Cheers, Ade.
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  7. #7

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    I like them also, especially the one on the left. Interesting little pieces. The visuals and the slogan on the 2nd badge amusingly remind me of this image I made for a propaganda / protest art-related college project some years ago. Everyone loves a bad rhyme or pun!

    Mat
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    The CIA perhaps

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    This Solidarity protest badge I also recently picked up from Poland was produced here in Great Britain so I am wondering if a Polish emigre organisation here funded the production of the English language "No Tanks" badges and had them smuggled back into Poland.

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    The screen-printed badge was produced in England by Istvan Markovits (Badge Maker) Limited which was dissolved in 1986 so was produced before the final collapse of the Polish communist regime.
    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

  10. #10

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    A few more Solidarity pin-back badges and stickpins:

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    I collect, therefore I am.

    Nothing in science can explain how consciousness arose from matter.

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