Veli bek Jedigar (1897 – 1971) was a soldier of the Imperial Russian Army and officer of both the Azerbaijani Armed Forces, Polish Army in the Second Polish Republic and the Home Army. He served in different armed forces from 1916 until 1946, fighting in both World War One and World War Two. In the interbellum Poland, he was promoted to commandant of the 7th Lublin Uhlan Regiment.
Veli bek Jedigar
Jedigar was born on October 31, 1897 in the real estate of Tekeli, Tiflis Governorate, Russian Empire, in a noble Azerbajiani family. He attended a private gymnasium in Tiflis, graduating in 1915. After graduation, he briefly studied at Kyiv Polytechnic Institute, but changed his mind and joined Tiflis Cadet Corps, in 1916. Soon afterwards, together with Dagestan Cavalry Regiment, Jedigar was transported to the Eastern Front, to fight in the Brusilov Offensive. After its failure, Veli bek Jedigar returned to Kiev, entering Kiev Artillery School. In late 1917 or early 1918, he went to his homeland, to serve in the army of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic.
Veli bek Jedigar as a young sergeant of the Imperial Russian Army
Following the Red Army invasion of Azerbaijan, Veli bek Jedigar continued fighting against the Bolshevik invaders until March 1921, when he left his homeland, and via Turkey and Romania left for Poland. In November 1922 he was officially accepted into the Polish Army, with the rank of the rittmeister.
In October 1924, Veli bek Jedigar completed cavalry training for officers, at the Cavalry Training Center in Grudziadz, and in January 1925 he was sent to the 10th Mounted Rifles Regiment, stationed in Lancut. His skills were appreciated by the military authorities, and the Azerbajiani soldier was quickly promoted. Furthermore, he was a protege of General Janusz Głuchowski, deputy minister of military affairs and commandant of the 7th Lublin Uhlan Regiment.
In June 1930, Veli bek Jedigar completed the battalion commandant course at the Training Center in Rembertow. In 1932, he completed with distinction the Higher War School in Warsaw, and as a qualified officer, was sent to Baranowicze Cavalry Brigade. In 1934, he was promoted to major, and in 1936, was appointed commandant of the 7th Lublin Uhlan Regiment, stationed in Minsk Mazowiecki.
In the 1930s, Veli bek Jedigar became acquainted with several high-ranking officers of the Polish Army. As a result, he was supportive of the policies of the Sanacja regime (see also Pilsudski’s colone