A market square in Poland.

In the 15th and 16th centuries, Poland, then united with Lithuania, was one of the major European powers under the Jagiellonian dynasty. Poland then entered a long period of decline, culminating in the partition of the country between Russia, Austria, and Prussia. Poland was again established as a sovereign state after World War I (1914-1918), but became a Soviet satellite following WWII. A new constitution in 1952 made Poland a “people's democracy” of the Soviet type, allowing elections and a freer press. Workers' strikes in 1980 and 1988 led to the eventual success of the Solidarity Party, culminating in the election of Lech Walesa to the Presidency in 1989. Over the last 20 years, Poland has see-sawed through a sucession of pro-communist and pro-capitalist administrations; it is currently under the direction of the liberal and EU-friendly Donald Tusk and his Civic Platform party.

Colby Magazine contains a brief profile of Lech Walesa and audio clips of speeches he has made on globalism, Russia, solidarity, and the changing century.

The Senate of the Republic of Poland

The Sejm (lower house of parliament) of the Republic of Poland

Krakow Info is an independent information service run by the city's professional journalists.

Poland.pl—Poland government hub site