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December 27, 2012
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OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
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Dec 27, 2012, 12:11:51 PM
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The Oldest Polish Tank by WormWoodTheStar The Oldest Polish Tank by WormWoodTheStar
When Polish troops entered Afghanistan, they encountered several old vehicles used as monuments, standing in museums etc. When they closely inspected one of the Renaults... it turned out it's a Polish tank!

How did a Polish Renault FT-17 end up in the Middle East? The most probable explanation is that it was captured during Polish-bolshevik war or during Soviet invasion of Poland in 1939. Then the Soviets sold it to Afghanistan, which was their ally at the time, and after several years of training duty, it was set on a monument.

Thanks to the effort of Polish enthusiasts and personal involvement of President Bronisław Komorowski, Afghan government agreed on shipping the tank back to Poland. In October 2012, it was carried by military cargo plane to Krzesiny Air Base and then brought to Land Forces Training Center. As of now, it's the oldest tank to serve in Polish colours and the oldest tank on Polish soil.

It is planned that the tank will be restored in Poznan, and then will be exhibited in Polish Army Museum in Warsaw (altough some people claim it should stay in Poznan, as it is the birthplace of first Polish armoured units - after WWI Renault FTs brought from France were grouped there, on Biedrusko shooting range).

On December 27th 2012, on the 94th anniversary of Greater Poland Uprising, the tank was set in front of National Museum to be exhibited to anyone interested in seeing it as it was brought to Afghanistan, after almost 100 years on foreign soil.

EDIT: the tank was restored surprisingly fast - it was already rolling during 2013 Independence Day parade in Warsaw
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:icondoctorreplen:
doctorreplen Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer

Wow!

That is amazing!

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:iconcaptfox:
CaptFox Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2013
It is very odd how things come full circle and the tank winds up back home! Still it's fitting that this, old warrior finally get as good place to rest.
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:iconbluefox284:
BlueFox284 Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2012
Be cool to see it running again in a memorial parade or such.
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:iconwormwoodthestar:
WormWoodTheStar Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012
I don't know if they'll be able to restore it to running condition; there is no engine inside, just differential mechanism. Still, even if it ends on static exhibition, we have two running replicas to make up for this.
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