The Ministry of justice of Poland said that we need to put in prison anyone who publicly say just two words: “Polish concentration camp”. A few years ago, such an expression made Barack Obama, called by mistake Auschwitz – and he had written to apologize. Why is Warsaw so offended by such statements?
The Ministry of justice of Poland has developed a bill on criminal responsibility for public attribution of the country of involvement in the crimes of the Nazis during the Second world war, reported Monday the newspaper VIEW.
“Murderers and their assistants from Germany, Poland, Hungary and many other places in their understanding did not do anything wrong.”
“Don’t make Poland the culprit of the Holocaust!” – demanded the Deputy Minister of justice Patrick Which. According to the project of the Ministry of justice, five years in prison for threatening “public and contrary to the facts attributing to Poland or the Polish people involvement, organization or complicity in the crimes of the Third Reich”. In this case, the result could bring the investigators of the Polish Institute of national remembrance, and the verdict would be made public.
So the Polish government intends to deal primarily with the wording “Polish death camps”, which is often found in the Western press when referring to Nazi concentration camps located in Poland.
We will remind, in 2012 President Barack Obama evoked the wrath of Warsaw, calling Auschwitz a “Polish death camp”. Then Obama apologized in writing before the Polish counterpart Bronislaw Komorowski, who said that play Obama.
“Immature politician, primitive law”
However, as the explanation of the Deputy Minister, the Polish authorities will not try to arrest Obama and others made a mistake in his speeches of foreigners. To plant for five years will be only those who were on the territory of Poland and abroad is to operate the Institute and non-governmental organizations. They proposed to confer the right to file these civil actions “to defend the good name of Poland”. According to Which, it would thus be possible to “demand compensation” for the use of such expressions abroad. “The source of law that would protect the good name of Poland and Polish people, would be a new entry in the Constitution,” he added.
Former Chairman of the international Committee of the Sejm of Poland, Professor of political science, University of Olsztyn Tadeusz Iwiński (the party “democratic left Alliance”) was called Patrick Which inexperienced young politician, and his project – “are too primitive and immature”. “We should be more politely to resolve this issue, you should learn not to automatically start the criminal prosecution. Should such decisions be taken after discussions with international lawyers, to think about how this law will be implemented in practice, said former member of the newspaper VIEW. – However, we now have a Parliament very “monochrome”, and if the government of such a bill would make sense that he would pass”.
According to Iwiński, to fight for the “good name” of Poland is necessary, but not such methods. “Indeed, in different countries even serious publications and TV channels allow such an error. People are mixing two things – it’s just a lack of knowledge of history. From a geographical point of view, oświęcim (Auschwitz-Birkenau), Treblinka, Majdanek, and many others were in Poland, but because they created the Nazis. But such wording can really give the impression that they were created by the poles. Still with this problem struggled otherwise. The Polish Embassy in different countries sent letters, requested that these errors are not sounded” – said Iwiński. “We’ll see. Maybe, as is often the case in politics, the government has launched this information as a trial balloon and will now wait for the reaction,” he hoped former member of the Sejm.
Note that in 2013 the Polish Prosecutor’s office refused to initiate proceedings concerning the expression “Polish concentration camp” used by the German publication Rheinische Post. “The expression “Polish concentration camps” do not indicate that they were built by poles, but merely describes the geographical location of the death camps,” – said the Prosecutor’s office.
In the same year a bill according to which the use of the expression “Polish concentration camp” as a crime, the party “Law and justice” has already made it to the Sejm. But the ruling Civic platform opposed, arguing that in such a case, the offence would have been taken out of context the statements of journalists, scientists or politicians, is reminiscent of “Radio Poland”.
Director of the public Fund “Historical memory” Alexander Dyukov agree that to apply to the concentration camps like Auschwitz-Birkenau, the epithet “Polish” is absolutely incorrect. “Of course it was a Nazi death camp. The indignation of the poles can be understood. However, the initiative of the Ministry of justice gives not just an oddity, and some paranoid, because the use of wrong wording, obviously, does not deserve criminal prosecution,” says Iwiński Russian historian in an interview with the newspaper VIEW.
“We must also understand that, as in any country in this region in the interwar period, Poland was also a concentration camp. It’s a camp for political prisoners of Bereza-Kartuzskaia where extrajudicially imprisoned and Communists, and Ukrainian nationalists, and other political opponents of the regime. It was not a death camp, but it was a concentration camp, and there’s nothing you can do about it,” said the historian. VIEW newspaper unknown, would the historian to repeat this point, if the law is still passed.
We will remind that in April of last year Warsaw was also indignant speech of FBI Director James Komi. Speaking at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in USA, Komi, said: “Murderers and their assistants from Germany, Poland, Hungary and many other places in their understanding did nothing wrong. They convinced themselves that it is correct the things they need to do.”
In response, the Polish Embassy in Washington has expressed official protest. Komorowski has criticized the head of the FBI in the “lack historical knowledge”, and his words called “an insult to the thousands of poles who helped Jews”. Later the U.S. Ambassador in Warsaw apologized to Poland, but Komi did not apologize, saying that in some countries “didn’t catch his point of view.”
“Had to pogroms indirect relation”
Historian Alexander Dyukov believes that to apologize to James Komi was really nothing, because ordinary poles really massively participated in the extermination of the Jews.
“Last year in Poland was published a capital book of a local historian about the Jewish pogroms, which gave ordinary poles, far-right nationalists, immediately after the outbreak of war in German-occupied territory. The Germans had to these pogroms only indirect relevance. Yes, Poland has not escaped this black page in its history,” said Dyukov.
However, noted historian, the Polish underground “Union of armed struggle”, which ran from the autumn of 1939, in contrast to the Ukrainian and Lithuanian nationalists never planned to cut out the Jewish population did not include in its program of anti-Semitic component, and there is a fundamental difference.
Experts also note the duality in the position of the ruling circles of Warsaw. It makes us repent of foreign politicians, including Barack Obama, for reservations about the “concentration camps”, but ignores, for example, the fact of participation of Warsaw in the partition of Czechoslovakia in 1939.
“This event is hardly mentioned, and if mentioned, it does not cause a violent reaction. By the way, as you know, this Polish diplomats invented the phrase “ugly offspring of the Versailles Treaty”, using it about Czechoslovakia. A year later it was used hammers against Poland itself. Aggressive activities in Poland against Czechoslovakia was quite consistent and included diversions, which were performed by the Polish secret services on the territory of neighbouring States, attempting to provoke the insurgency there and so on. Of course, today in Poland do not remember,” said Dyukov.Related posts: