Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Senior Polish Politician in Anti-Semitic Rant: "Jews are Animals": Algemeiner

Read disturbing article here.

I am sick of anti-Semites. I am sick of their hatred and ignorance. I am sick of their besmirching of Poland's good name. 

I grew up in a Polish-Slovak-American household and this attitude was utterly foreign to my childhood home. Anti-Semites are degenerates and every decent person, and especially every decent Polish person, should denounce them and their hate. 


  1. Anti-Semitism is as abhorrent as all other forms of racism and needs to be condemned. My question is, How is Plotkowski's remark "Jews are not humans, they are animals" different from Art Spiegelman's portrayal of Poles as "pigs" in Maus? I would argue that the latter is much more dangerous--it institutionalizes, normalizes and naturalizes anti-Polonism. Incidentally, Spiegelman received a number of prestigious awards for his racist work and Plotkowski only condemnation.

    Do Jews feel obligated to explain that anti-Polish attitudes are "utterly foreign" in their homes?
    Do Jewish Polonophobes "besmirch" Israel's good name or the good name of Jews as a collective? And why not? The answer is obvious. As members of a dominant/privileged identity group, they are viewed as individuals and their most heinous actions and most despicable attitudes do not damage the reputation of Jews as a group. Members of oppressed/nonprivileged groups--e.g., Poles--are denied human individuality and the heinous/abhorrent actions/attitudes of one are exploited to besmirch the entire group. I reject this manipulation and the collective responsibility and guilt it tries to engender! I denounce Plotkowski's anti-Semitic remark as much as Yair Lapid's anti-Polish remarks and Art Spiegelman's anti-Polonism--not more and not less.

  2. Excellent points, Ane. I myself immediately thought of MAUS.

    There is a further irony to all this. In the past, anti-Semites called Jews pigs, alleging that Jews won't eat pork because they would thereby be eating their own relatives! See my Amazon review of CONSIDERING MAUS.

    And now Poles are the pigs.

    What goes around comes around.

  3. Ane Brody’s point that an egregious double standard exists is clearly valid.

    As shown by the article’s comments (almost all of which are apparently from Jewish readers and reveal a deep-seated anti-Polonism), Plotkowski’s anti-Semitic tweet is immediately attacked and, unsurprisingly, ascribed to all Poles. In Jewish media elsewhere, however, Yair Lapid’s tweet is neither seen as anti-Polonic nor ascribed as typical of all Jews.

    This double standard is central to a false narrative that continues to be unwittingly accepted by many as empirical fact. This narrative asserts that Poles are genetically and irreversibly anti-Semitic while Jews are merely innocent victims of Polish anti-Semitism and do not harbor anti-Polonic feelings. This, of course, is nonsense.

    To further support this narrative, the Jewish community at large (including luminaries Benjamin Netanyahu, Alan Dershowitz, William Galston, and others) has attacked the recently enacted Polish anti-defamation law as anti-Semitic legislation designed to suppress historical truth. Never mind that the law mirrors Europe’s and Israel’s Holocaust denial laws.

    The Algemeiner also maintains this double standard. It allows (the apparently mostly Jewish) commenters to vent their spleen with unmistakably vile, anti-Polonic rants yet when one comments that an article has an anti-Polonic bias, that comment is not posted. (Full disclosure: I did so and my comment was designated as “inappropriate” and not posted. An algorithm didn’t do that.)

    1. This put me in mind of that famous quote by an Israeli politician:

      "[Poles] suck [anti-Semitism] with their mothers' milk. This is something that is deeply imbued in their tradition, their mentality. Like their loathing of Russia. The two things are not connected, of course. But that, too, is something very deep, like their hatred of Am Yisrael." — Yitzhak Shamir.

      So I too am very tired of all this hatred and contempt.

      What I would have wanted to say to both these politicians is to ask them please to study the Inspired Word of our Creator, the God of Abraham.

      When the cruelty and injustice of "the world" is pressuring us, God's word teaches us how to deal with it without letting it shape us.

      Psalm 37 contains perfect advice, and the assurance of a rescue. And Jehovah has given us a perfect template in Jesus.

      1 Peter 2:21-23 tells us: "In fact, to this course you were called, because even Christ suffered for you, leaving a model for you to follow his steps closely.  He committed no sin, nor was deception found in his mouth.  When he was being insulted, he did not insult in return. When he was suffering, he did not threaten, but he entrusted himself to the One who judges righteously."

      When he was being insulted he did not insult in return. A very very important principle.

      And when we go against it, first and foremostly, we offend our Creator. But also, isn't it counter-productive?

      Didn't both these politicians make a bad situation worse?

      Above all, IF we listen to our Creator and do our imperfect best to obey him, he will help us in every way.

      The fruitage of Gods spirit is: "love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith,  mildness, self-control".

      These are all qualities Jehovah will develop in us if we ask him in faith, and allow ourselves to be moulded by him.

      I could not deal with these issues without Jehovah helping me to develop patience, mildness and self-control.

      Either we let Jehovah shape us, or the world will.

      There has been an outpouring of hatred and contempt for all things Polish in the wake of this recent law, and this Polish politician has chosen to retaliate in kind.

      I wish he hadn't.

      And Ane, you demonstrated the blatant double standards in this area very well. The "Maus" situation... well, you couldn't satirise it really.

      And re racism in all its forms, once again we have a perfect curative in God's inspired word, IF we listen. Genesis tells us, simply and clearly, that we are all the damaged children of disobedient Adam, with an even closer common ancestor in faithful Noah.

      There are no separate races. We are all one family. There is no "uber" and no "unter". We are all caught in the same trap and all in need of the same rescue.

  4. Replies
    1. You are correct Jerzy7. Płotkowski is a former politician. He was a member of a minor party. And that party no longer exists.
      I have never before heard about that guy.

      The title is misleading. And the article is full of lies.
      But what else can you expect from "Der Algemeiner"?

      American Jews are becoming increasingly desperated in their attempts to find polish antisemitism.
      I wonder, for what purpose?

    2. Lukasz wrote:

      "American Jews are becoming increasingly desperated [desperate] in their attempts to find Polish antisemitism.

      I wonder, for what purpose?"

      No mystery, I think. It is all about jockeying for political advantage in the public realm. It has actually been going on for over a century (I know: I have reviewed many old books that contained it.)

      Most recently, it is all about discrediting the new Polish law--all because this new law potentially threatens the status quo and the political advantages that come from the status quo.

  5. Gene's comment is available there. I find it very good.

  6. The Polish government has intervened to prevent historian Ewa Kurek from receiving an award at the Polish Consulate in New York. Kurek is accused of anti-Semitism.


  7. Today (April 12) is Genocide Recognition Equality Day. Best wishes to all.

    It should be. It is conventionally Yom Hashoah--Holocaust Remembrance Day. I would like to change it just as leftists have changed Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day.

    If one group can invent alternative holidays, then so can others. So let's do it.

  8. Ane Brody I address Spiegelman’s work in my book. It is not correct to imply that I do not condemn hateful comments by Jews.
    It is also not correct to refer to Poles as an underprivileged group, or to refer to Jews as a privileged group. Poles have just as much power as Jews. Poles don’t use their power.
    Gene Sokolowski this blog and my book amply critique double standards of all sorts.
    A Polish politician made a vile comment. I condemned it. Condemning that vile comment cost me nothing. I am confused as to why anyone would have a problem with condemnation of a vile comment.
    Jerzy7 I wish you would post under a real name and stop hiding behind a silly pseudonym. If I and everyone else can post under our own, real names, so can you.
    Jan Peczkis your contemptuous comment about Holocaust Remembrance Day disgusts me.
    Folks, I don’t want to engage in a back and forth on this. You’ve had your say and I’ve had mine. Thank you.

  9. Jan Peczkis wrote

    "It is all about jockeying for political advantage in the public realm. "

    Nonsense. Anti-Semitism kills. When Jews encounter anti-Semitism, they fight it. Good for them.

  10. Dr. Goska,

    I'm curious how you define "power"? In your view, do Palestinian Americans have as much power as Jewish Americans and they just don't use their power?

    1. Power is irrelevant. Poles could increase and wield power more effectively and nothing would change. Poles and other Slavs will always be considered savages to Western Europeans and Israelis.

      Chris Helinsky

    2. Chris Helinsky,

      Power is very relevant. It is necessary for shaping public opinion: challenging stereotypes and replacing them with authentic images in the media, producing knowledge that is accurate in the academia, sanctioning those who defame one's good name. It is also necessary for challenging the narrative that Westerners are more civilized (less savage) than other peoples.

      What did the Westerners use if not power to create and disseminate the harmful stereotypes of non-Westerners? One of the myths that they have created and instilled in us is that stereotypes are impossible to erase. This engenders resignation and helplessness in the nonprivileged and marginalized groups and disinclines us from organizing resistance and challenging the status quo.

  11. Ane Brody I invite you to consider using your time and energy to promoting Polish issues rather than to criticizing Jews and Israel.

  12. Dr. Goska,

    The objective of my question was not to criticize Jews and Israel, but to understand how you define power. Where does power come from? Does it have an economic base? Do economic inequalities produce inequalities in power? Is there a correlation between economic and political power?

    I think that by looking at the example of the Palestinians we can better understand the roots of power and how it works. I don't think their land and property had been stolen from them because they failed to use their power. Are they being slaughtered as we speak/write because they are not using their power?

    1. My answers are in this series of blog posts. And I won't be posting any more comments about Palestinians, which are off topic for this blog. Thanks.


  13. The Polish government has intervened to prevent historian Ewa Kurek from receiving an award at the Polish Consulate in New York. Kurek is accused of anti-Semitism.

    I have read everything from her and listened to what she has to say. So, in short: Is she an "antisemite" for literally! quoting mainly Jewish! witness acounts which happend to cast f.e the Judenräte in a less than favourable light? Seriously....

    What makes me angry is the following: I consider Jews to be normal people. Not too good but also not too bad,normal human beings. Poles are also normal human beings, its ok to criticize us for our shortcomings. With Jews and also with the state of Israel, there seems to be a strange double-think. One side can terorize the other verbally (through slander, like Netanyahu, Ruderman Foundation, Azari,people from the Jewish community inside Poland hating the yearly Independence Day March because they also happen to be raging leftists), if the other side reacts its called "antisemitism" (on the rise, of course, what else?) I despise double standards.

    About the power thing: Well, lets look at it in the long run-Who is having the kids in Israel? The ultra-orthodox, who do not really care about Poland. In the US there are more and more Latinos who will, in the future, probably not be as willing to share power with the Jewish community in the US, even less to finance the support of Israel. In Western Europe, the future will be Muslim, who happen to hate Jews. It looks rather bleak for the Jewish community. Not rally smart to spit in the face of the only nation who was, about 10-15 years ago, seriously willing to take in Jews once again should ever such a need arise. Of course,these warm feelings are in the past now. Anyways, Poland should build up its strenght, especially on the PR front, and just tell the truth, loud and clearly. One day, we will all laught about this episode of madness.


Bieganski the Blog exists to further explore the themes of the book Bieganski the Brute Polak Stereotype, Its Role in Polish-Jewish Relations and American Popular Culture.
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