Friday, August 18, 2006

What’s brown and sounds like a bell?


Dung!

After Zbigniew Brzeziński, called for a little bit of sense to enter into the recent spats between Poland and Germany, Polish authorities have apparently...completely ignored him! Look at this from Expatica:

Poland's coastguard has cancelled the loan to Berlin of a ship's bell recovered after the world's worst maritime disaster, the 1945 sinking of a liner carrying 9,000 German civilians, exhibition organizers confirmed Thursday.

The bell was on display at a newly opened Berlin exhibition devoted to 20th century refugee expulsions including the flight of Germans from eastern Europe. Many Poles say it is offensive to their own war dead to memorialize Germans' suffering...


Brzeziński has said that the current conflicts between the two countries are much smaller than the role the two countries could be playing on the international stage.

Good advise, me old mate. Shame nobody seems to be listening.

More?
Another Polish object withdrawn from Berlin expellee display, Radio Polonia, Aug 17

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

The controversy about the exhibit has given alot of publicity to the German refugees after the war. More than the exhibit.

It also shows how difficult the Poles can be. They need to get a life.

Aaron Fowles said...

From the polskieradio article:
...claiming that most German expellees had earlier supported Nazi Germany, which is ultimately responsible for all civilian suffering in World War Two.

Now I hate to be nitpicky, but don't Hiroshima and Nagasaki count? I hate to point this out, mainly because my own country was behind these attacks, but Eastern Europe doesn't need to claim sole victimhood in WWII.

One could, of course, go to the numbers. More innocent people died at the hands of the Germans that in Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined. I'm going to leave it at that.

Michael Farris said...

IME in Europe (especially Central and Eastern Europe) WWII means 'what happened in Europe during WWII' (maybe NAfrica but that's about as far afield as it gets).

The whole Asian theater thing may as well have been another war altogether.

As for the present series of stupid conflicts I'll just say that in Polish reactionary politics, German is the new Gay.
The current Polish government seems to be taking the lead in trying to encourage anti-German feeling as a recipe for local election success, painting anyone who isn't a died in the wool Deutschophobe as a Nazi.
Good relations with it's neighbors is absolutely not in the interest of any part of the governing coalition.

And Germans make good scapegoats, cause let's face it, no one likes them very much.

beatroot said...

I'll just say that in Polish reactionary politics, German is the new Gay.

;-)))

Stanisław said...

why should Poland ignore this? Clearly the Germans were at fault for WW2, therefore clearly they were at fault for what happened to Germans after the war - perhaps Hitler should have considered the effect of failing on the German people before he offed himself in his underground bunker. The Polish government have every right to defend this attack on them; this exhibition is just like the neo-nazis who go on about "Polish atrocities" against the Germans causing Hitler to invade.

Michael Farris said...

"this exhibition is just like the neo-nazis who go on about "Polish atrocities" against the Germans causing Hitler to invade."

No it's not. Don't be so hysterical.
The proper response is recognition and curt dismissal not flailing hysterics. But then measured and rational response has never been part of Polish politics before, so why start now? (yeah a little hysteria of my own).

beatroot said...

The exhibition is about ethnic cleansing through the last century. So it’s full of lots of different examples of ‘ethnic cleansing’. One of those was when the Germans were kicked out of Poland, etc.

Now while it is understandable that Poles etc were none too pleased with these people it is necessary to recognize and except that there were lots of abuses.

That is an historical fact, we should except that, as well as pointing out that it in no way was it equivalent to what the Nazis did to Poland. And I’m sure even Erica Steinbach would recognize that, too.

sonia said...

Germans were at fault for WW2, therefore clearly they were at fault for what happened to Germans after the war

That's bullshit. Stalin bears just as much responsability for WWII as Hitler (if not more). And what happened to Germans after the war was entirely Stalin's fault. But Western leftists have a hard time recognizing that, and Poles feel a bit guilty about the whole thing because they feel like they profited from the whole thing. That's what makes Communists so evil - they deported 4 million Poles from Wilno and Lwow and other cities in Eastern Poland that survived the war almost intact, forcibly settled them in Wroclaw, Szczecin, Gdansk and other German towns that laid in ruins in 1945, and then called it 'a Polish atrocity'...

It just boggles the mind!!

beatroot said...

Stalin bears just as much responsability for WWII as Hitler (if not more)

That is complete nonsense and so is:


Poles feel a bit guilty about the whole thing because they feel like they profited from the whole thing.

Ordinary Poles think this is a bit of a cheak but they are not really bothered one way or another.

But I am a little disapointed by the 'Stalin started WW II' thing. That's madness, Sonia.

ignacy said...

I must say Sonia's logic makes me despise the commies even more. Look what they did to her ability to reason, despite her peculiar intelligence.

That said, I think Poles would have been happier with the eastern territory than the western turf so her point about Stalin's culpability after the war is right on as we used to say back in the day. And I doubt the exhibit included anything about Poles being moved west (albeit far less forcibly for the most part). Then too the Ukies et. al. would have been pissed and now with the break up of the Soviet Union there would have been *real* Polish-other nationality/ethnic group tensions.

I'm enjoying one of the last EB beers - my personal favorite. Seems they won't be available anymore.

sonia said...

But I am a little disapointed by the 'Stalin started WW II'

Why ? By signing the non-agression pact with Hitler that carved Poland, Stalin began WWII on the same side as Hitler. Hitler invaded Poland on Sept.1, Stalin on Sept.17. Then, Stalin invaded Finland, and later the Baltic states. He also started a war with Japan.

It's in all history books, Beatroot...

gumish said...

beatroot - if Hitler did not sign a deal with Stalin he might even not have attacked Poland in 1939 - and Stalin attacked Poland as well - the mistake by the Polish government was they never officially stated it is an open attack and are being at war with the Soviets - though paradoxically this is what might have been beneficial in a way

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