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JW Formoza – Jednostka Wojskowa Formoza

JWF is now part of Wojska Specjalne (1975-2008 – part of the Polish Navy). The Formoza was founded in 1975. Its first commanding officer was (now a retired) certified commander, kmdr por. dypl. Józef Rembisz. In 1974, a research team dealing with matters related to naval frogmen was created. The team was to draw up a concept for the organisation and formation of a special division of naval frogmen.

The unit was originally intended to comprise three sections of frogmen, a technical section, section and management. But it was necessary to change this premise; a frogman could not go under the water without a safety leash. It was found possible to omit this regulation. A basic team now consists of a pair formed to safeguard each other, three pairs create a special group, five groups – a section. At the very beginning, conscripted soldiers served in the unit, nowadays the unit is entirely professional, which has increased its operating effectiveness. A three-year training system was preserved, for instance, during the first year, mainly shooting, swimming long distances, driving vehicles and foreign languages.

In September 1987, the unit changed its name to Special Operations Department and the Special Naval Frogman Groups were created in 1990. The unit has formidable striking power, two frogmen may sink or take control of an enemy’s ship, several of them may block even a large group of ships. The current official name Formoza comes from a Polish Navy seamen nickname of unit’s training base “Formoza” (from relation between mainland, coast and island like PRC and ROC Taiwan – Formosa) – a former WW2 German torpedo test platform, 500 m away from coast in Gdynia Naval Harbour (Formoza means Formosa in Polish).

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