Polish airforce insignia 100 years old
PR dla Zagranicy
The white-and-red chequerboard was officially adopted on December 1, 1918
Several varieties of the emblem existed until it was finally standardized in 1921, after the Bolshevik war. The emblem first appeared as personal insignia, designed by fighter pilot Stefan Stec, and which he painted onto his plane. The markings caught the eye of airforce commander colonel Hipolit Łossowski who judged the design to be the perfect answer to the national roundel - it was original, it had the national colours and it was easy to paint on to wings and fuselage.
In World War 2, Polish pilots flying for the Allied forces would paint the chequerboard next to the insignia of the country where they were serving.
Between the 1960s and 1980s the chequerboard (usually rotated 45 degrees) was also painted on turrets and hulls of Polish Army tanks and armoured personnel carriers. This has since been discontinued.