Welcome to the original English language Poland and Polish discussion group board. This message forum is a place where English-speaking Poles, foreigners (expats) living in Poland, and anyone with a genuine interest in Poland can discuss and read the views of others concerning Poland. Subjects include: Polish news and current affairs; Life in Poland; politics; genealogy research; Polish culture and history; advice and tips on visiting Poland; Polish property and investment issues. The aim of our group is to increase awareness of wonderful Poland using the English language and allow and foster the honest debate and exchange of opinions on anything vaguely related to Poland and Polish - positive, negative and/or neutral! To state the obvious: all opinions and views expressed on this site are solely those of their respective authors and are not necessarily those of anyone else! Messages consisting of ads will be deleted.
"As for "pogrom" - you should learn some history. The pogrom was of decent Poles caught up by the winds of history fanned by evil people like Wolinska."
Hmmmmm, angry demonstrations in the street with people carrying placards saying "Zionists Go Home", people fired from their job for being Jewish, Jews having to flee the country.
That would fit most people's understanding of what a pogrom is.
What you're talking about are the reasons for the pogrom. By the same sophomoric logic you could say that the St Petersburg and Białystok pogroms in the first decade of the century were in fact spats between the Tsarist regime with all its infighting, the minor commercial class and the emerging industrial proletariat (infighting here too), some of whom were Jewish. The experience of those who had to flee suggests otherwise that these were pogroms.
When it comes down to Ms Wolinska-Brus's case, we can never, ever forget that there were elements, call them rogue elements, or untypical, or maverick, or a tiny minority, or whatever you may want to call them, if you will - but they existed all the same, within the AK and NSZ who perpetrated atrocities, crimes, military actions (again, one can argue till the cows come home about what to call them - but for sure they weren't tea parties) against Polish citizens of Jewish origin. Some of these people went to UK after the war. Prosecutors in the 1950s demended their extradition. We didn't hand them back due to the principle of asylum. Why should we change that now?
And I strongly agree with Ania, that perhaps it's time to draw a line under the horrors of the twentieth century and move forward. I greatly admire the South African 'Truth Commission' - no prosecutions, no recriminations, just a moving forward with the hope of peace and progress for future generations.
"Hmmmmm, angry demonstrations in the street with people carrying placards saying "Zionists Go Home", people fired from their job for being Jewish, Jews having to flee the country.
That would fit most people's understanding of what a pogrom is."
Would it? That's not my understanding of the term. You're defining persecution of a minority group maybe. The word "Pogrom" to me conjures up very violent images - setting fire to people's houses and murdering them in their beds e.g. what they say happened at jedwabne. I guess equivalent historical incidents in ethnic Polish history would be the nightime wolyn massacres by the ukrainians prior to and during wwii (where some of my relatives were murdered in their beds).
Saying this means telling someone to go home or leave a job totally waters down the true emotive nature of the word.
Strangely, Wolinska also persecuted Bartoszewski - in charge of the AK section charged with helping Jews, for which he was rewarded by honorary citizenship of Israel.
Ann Applebaum is the Pulitzer Prize winning Jewish-American journalist married to Radek Sikorski. Another obvious anti-semite, you see.
Wolinska didn't commit war crimes - she committed crimes against humanity in the cold light of day to further her career. Murderers shouldn't get off scot-free just because they evaded justice for a long time.
Although born to a Jewish family (nee Fajga Mindla Danielak), there is no evidence that she ever acted in anything except a secular manner. Her (and other’s) ousting from their party appointments was not so much a pogrom as a purge of what amounted to Trotskyites. Stalin tolerated this Rosa Luxembourg want-to-be, and others like her, because he knew that they would rabidly destroy Polish society. Her ilk murdered millions in the Soviet Union only to be purged in 1938. Her flight in 1968 had nothing to do with religion when the next wave of anti-Polish thugs pushed her and others aside to practice the policies of the Brezhnev era. Wolinskas out, Jaruzelskis in.
Is she a congregant at her local synagogue? Has she sat shiva at the passing of her husband? She should stand trial in Poland and wither the remainder of her days in one of the cold damp cells to which she sent her victims to be tortured and die. Too bad that the death penalty is not an option.
"...because he knew that they would rabidly destroy Polish society. Her ilk murdered millions in the Soviet Union only to be purged in 1938. Her flight in 1968 had nothing to do with religion when the next wave of anti-Polish thugs pushed her and others aside to practice the policies of the Brezhnev era"
She should swing for what she has done.
And of course, her husband found a sanctuary at a leftist 'university' in Great Britian.
Thanks British taxpayers for supporting murdering thugs.
Poles (and British too) are saying all sorts of horrible things. But it's worth remembering the example of John Paul II. He talked a lot about miłosierdie, mercy.
Perhaps it's time to follow his example a bit.
By the way, Oxford isn't generally considered a leftist university. Especially this week.
And I still think we should reflect on what JPII would have done with her.
JPII spoke of the reciprocal exchange of grace, and certainly espoused the virtue of forgiveness. This is not to say that he or Christian teaching inherently speak of capital punishment never being suitable. On the contrary, Judeo-Christian dogma is clear:
Genesis 9:6: "Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man."
Exodus 21:1: "He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death."
Verses 33-34 "So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are: for blood it defileth the land: and the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it."
Deuteronomy 19:11-13: "But if any man hate his neighbour, and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die, and fleeth into one of these cities: Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him thence, and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die. Thine eye shall not pity him”
As Poland does not have the death penalty this is not really relevant.
ps. using bible quotes to support arguments is not appropriate. You can find a quote in there to suit any argument.
I completely agree Ania - especially from the Old Testament. I mean come on, you can find a lot of crazy stuff in there which you would not want to apply to modern day ethics.
Yeah, let's not get biblical - I only get 'spiritual' on Friday nights!
I am not thumping a bible at anyone but pointing out that the current prevalent view that we are somehow obligated to forgive every one every thing so as to claim morality is misplaced.
The Old Testament quotes easily but there is no shortage of examples within the New Testament of muscular law enforcement (Romans); the Apostles were just much more wordy. It was the difference between old oral tradition and the epistilatory basis of the new.
As to mercy or forgiveness: you’ll have to show me where she has apologized, done penance or even simply acknowledged her actions.
Plenty of mercy and forgiveness in the New Testament too.
Mercy is for the Lord. We have laws to deliver justice
Justice means many things to many people
Honestly, the title of this should read "War Criminal faces justice at last"
Civil war raged in Poland well into the 1950’s between Russian planted communists (most of whom weren’t even Polish, this is a fact) and the remnants of Polish wartime underground. Most of the atrocities committed by Stalinist lackeys will never come to the full public view anyway…
Because of people like her someone grew up without a father, brother, mother…these people were nothing but state-sponsored terrorists and should be shot on the spot. Public execution would be most appropriate in this case.
"Justice means many things to many people"
What are you, a philosopher?
It has been well established in international law that any language pertaining to limitations does not apply to war crimes.
My friend's mum's two brothers were executed by someone like her or even maybe her. Her mother spent ten years as a political prisoner (spared from death as she was a woman).
Nothing will bring them back or give back lost years. I don't believe vengeance is the way forward in any situation. An eye for an eye is neanderthal thinking.
“An eye for an eye is neanderthal thinking.”
Right…murderers should be rehabilitated in state institutions so they can see the error of their ways…
Blah Blah Blah. Sorry Ania.
I’m surprised you feel this way about this case, given your family background.
"I’m surprised you feel this way about this case, given your family background. "
feeling differently will not help change my family history Mike. Surely you can understand that carrying hatred around inside you only hurts you. It means that the people who carried out these acts have affected the next generation. Doing the same thing to someone else means we have learned nothing.
"Right…murderers should be rehabilitated in state institutions so they can see the error of their ways…"
As I've said already, there is no death penalty in Poland so this is another debate.
Secondly this woman is 88. Is she really going to be aware of much at her age or even care what happens? I don't see the point of pursuing people who are nearly dead themselves. It just makes a joke of it all.
Sure they have affected us. That’s why we who grew up outside of Poland can understand why our parents always insisted we learn Polish, Polish history, etc. Their parents had to fight for it.
Just think how different our parents and their parents’ lives would have been if they could live in a normal, free country.
“Secondly this woman is 88. Is she really going to be aware of much at her age or even care what happens? I don't see the point of pursuing people who are nearly dead themselves. It just makes a joke of it all.”
This is a frequent excuse used by criminals to delay or escape trials altogether.
Going after her (and bringing her to justice, hopefully) sends a message.
“Secondly this woman is 88.”
Doesn’t this mean that she would spend less time incarcerated and thus pay a smaller penalty for assassinating political opponents? There you have it, your desire to reduce her sentence in deference to age is accommodated.
Population of Hell: +1
The service was to have been on Friday, 5th December. However, two days beforehand, the widow was buried in a closed ceremony.
The news didn't escape my attention.
I don't think my views are different to yours on this one.
It still rankles of course that the Guardian and fellow-traveller filth wax lyrical about human rights abuses yet find love in their hearts for Stalinists.