Józef Beck

Former Polish foreign minister (1894–1944) / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Józef Beck (Polish: [ˈjuzɛv ˈbɛk] ; 4 October 1894 – 5 June 1944) was a Polish statesman who served the Second Republic of Poland as a diplomat and military officer. A close associate of Józef Piłsudski, Beck is most famous for being Polish foreign minister in the 1930s and for largely setting Polish foreign policy.

Quick facts: Józef Beck, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Pres...
Józef Beck
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
2 November 1932  30 September 1939
PresidentIgnacy Mościcki
Prime MinisterAleksander Prystor
Janusz Jędrzejewicz
Leon Kozłowski
Walery Sławek
Marian Kościałkowski
Felicjan Sławoj Składkowski
Preceded byAugust Zaleski
Succeeded byAugust Zaleski
Personal details
Born(1894-10-04)4 October 1894
Warsaw, Congress Poland, (then part of Russian Empire)
Died5 June 1944(1944-06-05) (aged 49)
Stănești, Romania

He tried to fulfill Piłsudski's dream of making Poland the leader of a regional coalition, but he was widely disliked and distrusted by other governments.[1][2] He was involved in territorial disputes with Lithuania and Czechoslovakia. With his nation caught between two large hostile powers (Germany and the Soviet Union), Beck sometimes pursued accommodation with them and sometimes defied them. He attempted to take advantage of their mutual antagonism but then formed an alliance with the United Kingdom and France. Both declared war on Germany after its invasion of Poland in 1939. After the Soviet Union also invaded Poland, Beck and the rest of his government evacuated to Romania.