Gierek, Edward

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Gierek, Edward Gender: M
born on 6 January 1913
Place Porabka (Sosnowiec), Poland, 50n17, 19e13
Timezone MET h1e (is standard time)
Data source
Date w/o time
Rodden Rating X
Collector: Astrodienst
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_capcol.18.gif 15°33' s_mo.18.gif s_capcol.18.gif or s_sagcol.18.gif

Edward Gierek
photo: Romanian Communism Online Photo Collection, license fair-use


Polish Communist politician.

He lost his father to a mining accident in a pit at the age of four. His mother married again and emigrated to northern France, where he was raised. He joined the French Communist Party in 1931 and was later deported to Poland for organizing a strike. After his military service in Stryj, Galicia, Gierek went to Belgium in 1934, where he joined the Communist Party of Belgium while working in the coal mines of Waterschei. During World War II, he remained activist of the Communist Party of Belgium. He returned to Poland in 1948 and rose through the party ranks to become by 1957 a member of the Polish parliament. As first secretary of the Katowice voivodship party organization (1957–70), Gierek created a personal power base and became the recognized leader of the young technocrat faction of the party. When rioting over economic conditions broke out in late 1970, Gierek replaced Władysław Gomułka as party first secretary.

Gierek promised economic reform and instituted a program to modernize industry and increase the availability of consumer goods, doing so mostly through foreign loans. His good relations with Western politicians, especially France's Valéry Giscard d'Estaing and West Germany's Helmut Schmidt, were a catalyst for his receiving western aid and loans.

The standard of living increased markedly in the Poland of the 1970s, and for a time he was hailed a miracle-worker. The economy, however, began to falter during the 1973 oil crisis, and by 1976 price increases became necessary. New riots broke out in June 1976, and although they were forcibly suppressed, the planned price increases were canceled. In 1979, he reluctantly allowed Pope John Paul II to make his first papal visit to Poland (June 2–10) after Brezhnev first warned him not to allow this visit, then warned him not to "do anything that he (Gierek) would regret". High foreign debts, food shortages, and an outmoded industrial base compelled a new round of economic reforms in 1980. Once again, price increases set off protests across the country, especially in the Gdańsk and Szczecin shipyards. Gierek was forced to grant legal status to Solidarity and to concede the right to strike. (Gdańsk Agreement).

Shortly thereafter, in early September 1980, he was replaced as party leader by Stanisław Kania and removed from power. Gierek was jailed for a year in December 1981 by the next ruler of Poland, General Wojciech Jaruzelski, who introduced martial law on December 13, 1981, in an effort to make him a scapegoat for the economic troubles Poland was experiencing.

He died on 29 Julay 2001.

Link to Wikipedia biography


  • opponent/rival/enemy relationship with Gomulka, Wladyslaw (born 6 February 1905). Notes: Gierek replaced Gomulka as party leader


  • Work : New Career 20 December 1970 (became 1st party secretary, after Gomulka was forced to resign)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Work : Fired/Laid off/Quit 5 September 1980 (forced to step down and retire)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.

Source Notes

date from Wikipedia, time unknown


  • Vocation : Politics : Heads of state (First party secretary 1970 - 1980)
  • Vocation : Politics : Party Affiliation (Polish communist party)