This is quite incredible,
Concerning the law which attempts to criminalize portraying guilt to WW2 atrocities to the Polish government or nation, after a huge backlash from Israeli politicians – Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki tweets this, and it is just so disappointing to fathom.
There is something I wanted to say about this, as a grandchild to Polish Holocaust survivors, as a Jew living in Poland. I wanted to tell him he’s right. He is right because his short version of the story is right – Poland was not the perpetrator to the annihilation of European Jewry, nor an accomplice)as most countries under Nazi rule were) of the Nazi occupier. He is right in the rough detail – but there is a more detailed story.
This more detailed story is now told by the grand-kids of those who remained from the “first family” in his parable. But they widen the spec a bit: they say that before the thugs came in – some of the kids of the second family bullied them, and harassed them to leave. They mention that a few of this second family’s kids cursed them as they were beat and their family killed, they say that after some torture – those kids even sometimes took part in the action. They do remember the kindness of one of the family children, but were very disappointed of the people they considered their neighbors and allies. And they strongly remember that after the thugs left, and they came back home shocked and wounded – they were not welcomed back, they heard the question “haven’t you died?” sneered at them, and they remember being pushed away by those neighbors – long after the thugs left.
So Morawiecki is the son of this second family, and no wonder he didn’t really heard this fuller story. For a long while his family was quite oppressive (or oppressed), and those stories were taboo. But now – long after – Morawiecki refuses to hear these stories. He keeps saying “this is not what I heard from my fathers”, and I’m sure he’s right. You just have to be quite deaf and self-concentrated to refuse to hear.
We are now saying – tell us your story. We want to hear, we want to better understand (and Morawiecki is right – some members of my family are also ignorant and deaf and self-concentrated, but it’s not all of us. And I believe not most of us). But you have to be open also to hear other stories. Like each family – yours is a complicated one, you can choose the legacy of which of this family’s sons you want to carry on. I hope all of our families will decide wisely, and with open ears and hearts.