President Says Poland Did Not Take Part In The Holocaust

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Poland’s president said Monday there was no institutionalized participation by Poland or its people in the Holocaust but acknowledged that individual Poles took “wicked” actions against Jewish neighbors.

President Andrzej Duda said he would never allow Poland and Poles in general to be “vilified” though “false accusations.”

Duda seemed to be reacting to anger in Israel over a Polish bill that would outlaw public statements assigning to “the Polish nation” responsibility for crimes committed by Nazi Germany during its World War II occupation of Poland.

Violations of the proposed law would be punishable by fines or prison terms of up to three years. A section of the bill exempts prohibited statements made “within artistic or scientific activity.”

Some 6 million Polish citizens, half of them Jews, died under the Nazi occupation of Poland. In Israel, the legislation has been interpreted as an attempt to undermine scholarly research and deny facts about the Holocaust.

Duda’s top aide, Krzysztof Szczerski, met Monday with Israeli Ambassador Anna Azari to discuss the bill’s wording, which critics say is unclear.

Szczerski characterized the talk as “difficult and frank” and said he was critical of the reaction in Israel to the legislation approved by the lower house of Poland’s parliament Friday.

Speaking during a visit to the southern town of Zory on Monday, Duda said that referring to the camps built and operated by the Germans in occupied Poland as “Polish death camps” is an example of the kind of statements the law is meant to address.

The president said he condemned anti-Semitism and other forms of hatred.

The prime ministers of Poland and Israel agreed after speaking by phone Sunday night to try to resolve differences over the legislation by convening a group of history experts.

(AP)

3 COMMENTS

  1. So is a country the same as its people? The Polish government did nothing during the holocaust (well, it was located in London and did object, and encouraged the British to defeat the German). Certainly the Polish government did nothing to affect the holocaust, or to affect anything else.

    Consider a different context, would you say that “Denmark saved its Jewish population” or that “the Danes saved Denmark’s Jewish population”. If the latter, which is technically more correct, then the statement that “Poland did not participate in the holocaust” is correct, and the proper way to what happens is “The Polish people (many, if not most) particpated in the holocaust”. In all fairness, the Germans also engaged in mass murder against the Poles, and that Poles who cooperated with the Germans were and are regarded as traitors (though as in most of what was once “occupied Europe” it is politically correct to ignore the facts suggesting that most of the population were traitors).

  2. a small minority of poles actually attempted to assist the Jews.the overwhelming majority of poles not only allowed the holocaust to occur,but actually actively assisted and complied with the atrocities.it’s not by coincidence that ALL the death camps were in poland.the germans soon realized that in poland they’ll not only NOT get pushback from the locals vis a vis destroying the Jews but will actually receive hands on support.I know these facts to be 100% true and any other narrative is pure unadulterated falsehood!

  3. As long as he is lying (assuming he’s not just a stupid ignorant fool) he might as well go all the way and deny the terrible antisemitism that the Poles have been noted for centuries! Better yet, let him state how much the Poles loved the Jews throughout history!