The Polish Army's 1st Special (Commando) Regiment, or 1 PSK, is one of several special operations units within the Polish military's force structure. Currently based in Lubliniec, the regiment carries on the traditions of Poland's World War II special operations forces. These WWII units, organized with the assistance of the US and England, consisted of the 2nd Commando Battalion, the Special Motorized Battalion and the Parasol (Umbrella) and Zoika Sabotage Battalion .
The modern day unit's troops are expected to conduct para-commando/ raider type missions in the enemy's rear areas during war time, and are trained to conduct a wide range of combat operations including: air assault operations, parachute operations, reconnaissance, raids, ambushes, underwater attacks, and supporting hostage rescue operations. The regiment's soldiers tend to display a higher degree of professionalism, compared to other Polish forces, thanks in part to the unit's high recruiting standards, and a special training program the regiment implemented several years ago.
Candidates for service in the unit must first successfully undertake basic training and then complete a three-month training course for the unit's junior specialists. During this phase of training troops receive training in close combat, unarmed combat, fighting with specialized equipment, parachuting, land navigation, weapons handling, basic survival skills, and several other skills. After completing their second phase of training, the unit's new trainees are organized into six-man teams for operations.
In the near future the unit will be reduced in strength to one battalion and aims to become fully professional force. The new battalion, along with GROM and the Navy's GSP (Formoza) combat diver unit, will fall under a new Polish special operations command.
What may come as a surprise to many observers of the world's military elites is that Poland maintains a significant, highly trained, but relatively unknown special operations capability. One of the least known of these units is the Polish Navy's Grupa Specjalna Pletwonurkow (GSP - naval special combat diver group), which is more commonly known in the Polish media as “Formoza”.
Formoza is an elite group of combat divers organized along the lines of the US Navy SEALs, and British SBS. Very little information on the unit's activities has been released to the public. What is known is that the unit operates as part of the Navy's reconnaissance vessels group (GOR) and is currently based at the Gdynia-Oksywie naval base.
The few media reports of the unit's operations have stated that it has conducted missions in Persian Gulf in support of the war on terrorism. During the recent hostilities in Iraq, they reportedly operated alongside the GROM special operations unit, and conducted several joint operations alongside US special operations forces. The Iraqi operations were launched from the Polish naval vessel Xawery Czernicki, and were conducted near the port city of Umm Qasr during the opening days of the war.
Photos of the unit have shown them using a mixture of US and German equipment and weapons including “Fritz” style Kevlar ballistic helmets, black Nomex flame retardant suits, MP-5 9mm SMGs, and M-4 5.56mm assault rifles.