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Błyskawica (Submachine gun)

Louis

FGM Lieutenant General
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Castelar, Buenos Aires Province, Argentina.
The Blyskawica or Lightning Gun was the Polish Army’s first successful sub machine gun of WW2. It was a knock off of the British Sten and the German MP-40. It was created in the context of a series of invasion and occupation of Poland by the Nazis and the Russians. Seweryn Wielanier and Wacław Zawrotny, two Jewish mechanics offered to design and create a light sub machine gun for the Polish Home Army. Working with underground vendors, and secret contracts, the Poles were able to produce 700 of these 9mm guns.

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The Błyskawica’s sights were admittedly rather crude, nothing more than a simple rear peephole, and a slightly pointed notch post. Some sources claim maximum effective range was 200 meters, or about 600 feet, though that figure seems overly ambitious, especially for a home-made gun. Maximum effective range was likely considerably less.

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Despite the shortcoming of the Błyskawica’s design, it was a functional weapon that took advantage of the logistical realities of the day—9x19 millimeter ammunition and Sten magazines—to create an imperfect, but workable design.

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