Return PolishForums LIVE
  PolishForums Archive :
Archives - 2005-2009 / History  % width 161

Poland and Lithuania


Prince 15 | 590  
22 Jan 2009 /  #61
If they win elections does that mean the people who voted for them had to be Polish?.

To be honest ... this political fraction is called "Polish Election Action in Lithuania" so we are not talking about politicans with Polish roots ... They have votes only in regions with noticable Polish miniority. Lithuanian press isn't happy that they exist. It is normal miniority and should have the same rights as miniorites in Poland. You see we have Lithuanian miniority in Poland ... this people are not people who consider themselves Polish or Poles with "origin". They claim to be Lithuanian. They live in Puńsk they have 2 languages in offices, they have their language in schools.

Poles bought houses in Wilno, Poland haven't invaded Lithuania, People who you mentioned ... lived there for centuries. I am talking about the people who live there and are Polish, this people haven't came there by force, they always have been living there or were invited (bought their houses, build univerisites ect. nobody wanted them to be Lithuanian) They have been making pro-Polish uprises (against Russia and Lithuanians from other regions who wanted to occupy them). They are not immigrants there, they should have the right for everything what other european miniorities have ... bilingula signs on roads, langage in schools ect.

Lithuanian "Poles" do have the same rights in Lithuania as Lithuanians, so where is the problem?.

The problem is that they don't.

If you like I can ask Lithuanians why? but it is just going to be a load of prejudiced historical stuff.

I like those not prejudiced because we don't want to incorporate them or something but I like Wilno I like their country side and some people.
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
22 Jan 2009 /  #62
Anyone else noticed how similiar is Lithianians description of their situation in history to the polish one? "Screwed between Poland and Russia.." Just replace Poland with Germany and there you go. :)

Absolutely! I meant for people to see it that way.
But i do think because Lithuania is a small country (About the same size as Ireland) it tends to be ignored by a lot of other countries.

I could explain the whole situation but to do that i would have to "make a few century trip back in time" and I'm not sure if anyone here really is interested in it.

Yeah i know what you mean, it is a long hard history...
but it might be interesting if we had the two histories, Polish and Lithuanian?.

On the whole though, as much as I don't agree with this "screwed between Poland and Russia" attitude

Lithuania has had a difficult time and it does get unnoticed but they do not help themselves by hating everyone (I will stop there as this thread is about Poland and Lithuania and not about me and Lithuania).

To be honest ... this political fraction is called "Polish Election Action in Lithuania" They have votes only in regions with noticable Polish miniority.

This is the bit I get confused at, there are not 50% Poles in Lithuania or Vilnius.

And according to Wiki
Poles (6.3%) in Lithuania and
Poles are the largest minority, concentrated in southeast Lithuania (the Vilnius region). Russians are the second largest minority, concentrated mostly in two cities. They constitute sizeable minorities in Vilnius (14%)

(I think that is Poles and Russians together?)

But it is not

more than 50% of people

Being Polish.

Could you explain what you mean, please?.
Prince 15 | 590  
22 Jan 2009 /  #63
We are talking about one paritcular region ... Wilno and surounding grounds. Poles win there ... from city most were expeled but in sourounding grounds Poles are in majority ... this is how Poles win regional elections. Even this source is right 14% - it is enought to have rights like 60 000 of Sorbs in Eastern Germany :)

Being Polish. Could you explain what you mean, please?.

I mean that this people don't claim to be Lithuanian with origin but claim to be Polish from Lithuania. :) They vote on POLES in Polish party not on Lithuanians with Polish origin in normal political movements.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puńsk

Puńsk (Lithuanian: Punskas) is a village with 1,050 inhabitants in the Podlaskie Voivodeship, Poland. Over 80% of the population of Puńsk is Lithuanian. It lies in the northeastern part of Poland, only 5 km (3 miles) from the border with Lithuania.

Puńsk has belonged to Poland since 1920. Until World War II the majority of its population were Jewish, today only a cemetery remains of them. With Lithuanian Culture House, Lithuanian high school and print house, Puńsk is an important centre of Lithuanian national minority in Poland.

One year later its offshoot - Lithuanian Youth Society was created. These organizations connect all of Lithuanians and represent their interests in and out of country.

They are normal Lithuanians ... not Poles with origin. :)

The same goes to Poles in Wilno and surounding grounds. I am waiting for bilingual schools, signs on roads and come back of Polish language on Wilno University.

If not enthic cleanising of Poles after the war (Punishment for being on allies side) ... there would be hard to find Lithuanians in Wilno.

As to the city (Wilno) without surounding grounds.

pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilno

Before WWII (Nationality declared by citizens) 1931

Poles - 65,9 % (128 600 people), Jews 28 % (54 600), Russians 3,8 % (7 400), Whiterussians 0,9 % (1700), Lithuenians 0,8 % (1579), Germans 0,3 % (600), Ukrainians 0,1 % (200), iothers 0,2 % (400)

2001 (nationality declared by citizens)

Lithuenians 57,8 %, Poles 18,7 %; Russians 14 %, Whiterussians 4 %, Jews 0,5 %, others 5 %.

So Poles are in majorit in sourounding grounds and are strong miniority in the city. It is enought to have the rights like all miniorites in other european countries.
Bratwurst Boy 9 | 10,432  
22 Jan 2009 /  #64
Interesting article:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish_minority_in_Lithuania

If that is true it seems that the lithuanian Poles were on the soviet side as he SU collapsed and Lithuania sought to get free...hence the tensions.

But they are in the EU now....there are rules and laws for all minorities in each member states!
Prince 15 | 590  
22 Jan 2009 /  #65
Lithuania

% of Poles by municipalities

If that is true it seems that the lithuanian Poles were on the soviet side as he SU collapsed and Lithuania sought to get free...hence the tensions.

Give me some quotations :) It is not true.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
22 Jan 2009 /  #66
It's interesting that Lithuania has such a large Polish presence, yet I haven't spotted any Lithuanian Poles either here on PF or in my experience of working with both Poles and Lithuanians in the United Klingon, or at least none who have said they are from Lithuania. I have worked with a small number of Russians from Lithuania who generally seemed to have a sense of superiority over both Lithuanian Lithuanians and Poles.

Lithuanian jazz was said to be the best jazz the USSR had to offer back in those days, but I still reckon Polish jazz p155ed all over the Lithuanian stuff! Am I allowed to say that?
Bratwurst Boy 9 | 10,432  
22 Jan 2009 /  #67
Give me some quotations

...according to surveys conducted in the spring of 1990, 47% of Poles in Lithuania supported the pro-Soviet Communist party (in contrast to 8% support among ethnic Lithuanians), while 35% supported Lithuanian independence.[25]

Prince 15 | 590  
22 Jan 2009 /  #68
Well it is first time I hear about it but if this source is reliable :

In 1950s the remaining Polish minority was a target of several attempted campaigns of Lithuanization by Communist Party of Lithuania, which tried to ban any teaching in Polish language; those attempts where however vetoed by Moscow which saw them as too nationalistic

When Lithuania declared its independence from the Soviet Union in 1990, Gorbachev sought help from the Polish minority[29]. Polish minority, still remembering the 1950s attempts to ban Polish language,[25] was much more supportive of the Soviet Union and afraid that the new Lithuanian government might want to reintroduce the Lithuanization policies

and

this situation is further aggravated by fringe Lithuanian extremist nationalist organization Vilnija. The organization was formed in 1988, and its primary aim was the Lithuanization of ethnic Poles living in the Eastern part of Lithuania. The organization's goal is also to counter perceived growing Polish influence in Lithuania, which Vilnija sees as a threat to that nation. Vilnija has been seen by Polish government and media to often organize or support anti-Polish actions.

[hr]

In my opinion regions with strong Polish society should be protected form forced Lithuanisation atempts, discrimination in offices (offices in buildings build by Poles from Lithuania), bilingual signs on roads (as everywhere in Europe where are old miniorities) ect.

Poland doesn't want to incorporate Lithuania but Polish miniority should have rights on European level.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
22 Jan 2009 /  #69
"Poles" from Lithuania want control of Vilnius.

Could you explain this one ?
osiol 55 | 3,922  
22 Jan 2009 /  #70
It looks like Lithuania's attempt at proving that it is a cohesive nation state. Too much diversity may undermine Lithuanian feelings of nationhood. Perhaps they should look at Belgium and how its population is mixed French and Dutch, yet maintains its distinction. Lithuania, though, has had a much rockier history over recent times, and still rightly fears Russia particularly, far more than Poland.
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
23 Jan 2009 /  #71
% of Poles by municipalities

Very interesting map, I have been all over Lithuania but never south of Vilnius.
I never knew there were so many Polish Lithuanians.
It does justify Lithuanian and Polish signs being put in place.

But they are in the EU now....there are rules and laws for all minorities in each member states!

Ha ha ha ha, there was a E.U. funded bus to educate people about equality for other people and they planned to raise the rainbow gay flag in Vilnius but there was strong objection and they were not allowed to do anything and practically run out of the country

Could you explain this one ?

A lot of "Polish" from Lithuania want Vilnius to be part of Poland (again).

--------------------------------------------------------

I think Lithuanains are afraid of loosing there country again.
And now they are E.U. this will probably change, I think but it takes time.
lesser 4 | 1,311  
23 Jan 2009 /  #72
Perhaps they should look at Belgium and how its population is mixed French and Dutch, yet maintains its distinction.

Actually a lot of Flemish would love either Flemish state or join Netherlands. This is completely artificial state, two societies without much of contact. I have heard from few Flemish that only one thing keep Belgium united, this is king of Belgium.

Ha ha ha ha, there was a E.U. funded bus to educate people about equality for other people and they planned to raise the rainbow gay flag in Vilnius but there was strong objection and they were not allowed to do anything and practically run out of the country

So the people educated the EU in the end, free of charge!

"Polish Election Action in Lithuania"

Often democracy really fail in ethnically diverse states. For sure Lithuanian nationalism was strong in the beginning. Thus Polish minority still vote for national party. Politically they are really behind the times. The same about German minority in Poland.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
23 Jan 2009 /  #73
Maybe Belgium is just too uninteresting for me to have really noticed this!

I reckon that it is within Lithuania's interests to officially recognise its Polish and Russian minorities. Pretending they're not there or trying to convince these minorities that they don't exist could undermine Lithuania's identity further. Perhaps the example of Finland and its Swedish minority and their status may have been a better idea than bringing up Belgium. What Lithuania fears most is Russia. If Poles in Lithuania wanted territory to be given to Poland, that would actually weaken everyone's position other than that of Russia.
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
23 Jan 2009 /  #74
Pretending they're not there or trying to convince these minorities that they don't exist

What makes you think that Lithuania pretend that Lithuanian Poles do not exist?.
I think Lithuanians are very aware of their Polish population.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
23 Jan 2009 /  #75
What makes you think that Lithuania pretend that Lithuanian Poles do not exist?.

Nothing.
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,446  
28 Jan 2009 /  #76
What do Lithuanians think of General Żeligowski? Would the average Lithuanian nowdays even know who that was?
Husaria - | 15  
31 Jan 2009 /  #77
Instead of Polonizing Vilnius why don't Lithuanian Poles move to Poland?
Mr Grunwald 29 | 1,957  
11 Feb 2009 /  #78
They don't want to have the moving thing wich happened in 1945? They like the place that must be quite obvious
Nerijus  
8 Aug 2009 /  #79
I am Lithuanian who lives in Vilnius. First I came here as a student. It took me 6 years to be there to realize that I in different cultural and language environment. As a student I've been so engaged in university circles that nothing strange can be noticed as everyone here spoke Lithuanian that perfectly; no problems in shops or at barber's etc. These first four years I uttered no word neither in Russian nor Polish. Vilnius question as such was like a deep history issue and so clear to me, though I must admit that I knew practically nothing. And moreover I think that is the typical case of ordinary Lithuanian who came here whether to live or study in Vilnius. This can illustrate "our deep knowledge of history" decently enough Lithuanian state was establish in form of GDL, Vilnius became entity's capital and considered as such until Poland took it from Lithuania somewhere in the beginning of 20 century for 20 years or so.

First shock encountered was at my first job in Vilnius. It was a small firm of 50 or so employees. Very few were native Lithuanians. I thought everyone is Russian as everyone spoke to me in Russian. Very few understood Lithuanian, even fewer had a good command or comfortable with it. One thing more the Russian they spoke was very different from what the one I learnt at school, but that was mainly pronunciation. After a year I was fluent in spoken Russian because of that unplanned immersion. And then when I get in good terms with some employees I learnt that most of them Polish! I grew up near Polish border an have been in Poland several times before and I had the idea what Polish was and sounded like, so it made me wonder why they are you not talking Polish among a peer group? All they do is t0 make their Russian sound Polish. They have a heart for Russian culture too, they discuss Russian political issues, they know Russian sports events, supports Russians at various competition and so on. But if you ask them they will most definitely I am Polish.

Shock number two. They hate being Lithuanians!!! They hate Lithuania and Lithuanian culture as a such they reject any idea of being somehow marked as Lithuanians and I have no absolute idea what other part of Lithuania is about. None of them even read Lithuanian article in paper or listen to Lithuanian radio. Most Lithuanian from my accent can say where I came from, but they have a very vague idea even if I name the place. Imagine situation something that is a good in taste for Lithuanian person whatever it might be accent, song, cultural event for them is nothing. This Lithuanian you know (mean ridiculous). They are very quick to ridicule any political issue in Lithuania and very few can aware of that that it hurts the person who cares!

Sunburst number one. There is a new Polish generation that is coming up that is perfectly bilingual not in Polish Russian and local Polish, but in good Polish and good Lithuanian along with English and Russian as foreign languages.

Sunburst number two. Simply not knowing Lithuanian means you not IN in Lithuania. So as more and more Lithuanian Poles speak decent Lithuanian they can revive the idea of Lithuanian nationality not in terms of modern Lithuania but GDL, where were do stand meant more than what language you spoke.

As my personal opinion is concerned, I think Poland is making a mistake when concentrating on "protecting" Polish secondary education in Eastern Lithuanian (which is of high standard at the moment), rather than sending or financing teachers in all Lithuania to teach Polish as foreign language, and it will do very good for Poland in terms they want to be a respected regional power and subsequently revive Polish as lingua franca at least here.
lesser 4 | 1,311  
8 Aug 2009 /  #80
The idea of national state is perverted itself. No wonder that it have so many negative consequences.
equinox 1 | 4  
8 Aug 2009 /  #81
It's a big mistake to equate the historical Lithuania ( "Litwa" ), or the Grand Duchy (GDL), with the modern, small, ethnic country called Lithuania. They are different animals, which happen to share the same name. As GDL expanded out from its core Baltic territory (14th cent onwards), the ethnic Baltic component dropped down to 50% and, by the 17th century, sunk all the way down to 10%. The vast majority of GDL's inhabitants were Ruthenians: Eastern Slavs, the ancestors of modern-day Belarusians (and to a smaller degree Ukrainians). The official acts in the historic Lithuania were issued in Ruthenian to make it understandable to the population. The upper class consisted of Lithuanian, Polish and Ruthenian nobles. The non-Polish nobles frequently Polonized over the course of time.

Most historical characters who called themselves Litwin ( "Lithuanian" ) or hailed from Litwa ( "Lithuania"), were not ethnic Lithuanians, there were Ruthenian by ancestry ( "Rusini" ). The attempt to make Mickiewicz a modern-day "Lithuanian" is an example of this blunder. Mickiewicz's distant ancestry was Ruthenian, or Eastern Slavic, with other small admixtures (possibly Tatar and Jewish). "Mickiewicz" derives from the Ruthenian form "son of Micko", where "Micko" is a diminutive for "Michailo" ( Michael ), akin to Hrycko - Hrihory ( Gregory ), Petko - Piotr ( Peter ), etc. He was a Polonized noble with Ruthenian ancestry, not a Lithuanian in the modern sense. In his famous verse, he proclaimed his love for the historical, multi-ethnic province of Lithuania, not the modern-day, ethnic Lithuanian state. Mickiewicz native language was Polish (obviously, given his mastery of it), but he spoke a bit of Lithuanian, Ruthenian and Russian.
McCoy 27 | 1,269  
8 Aug 2009 /  #82
equinox,

v good post
Marek11111 9 | 816  
8 Aug 2009 /  #83
the relations between Poles and other eastern countries is based on polish relations from middle ages where Poles ware thinking that they are better then Ukrainians or Belorussians and and Lithuanians, with that thinking Poland disappear from a map but if Poles would take different approach and give equal rights to all nations in their borders Poland would be the gratest power in Europe even in the world.

in my opinion people from eastern Europe feel resentment towards Poles and Polish people did not talk about the recital policies they had.
McCoy 27 | 1,269  
9 Aug 2009 /  #84
Poles ware thinking that they are better

they were and still are
Nerijus  
9 Aug 2009 /  #85
Do you think that we all so silly here in Lithuania and do not see the difference between modern Lithuania and GDL. We perfectly aware that Mickiewicz didn't speak or write any Lithuanian whatsoever. I haven't met any Lithuanian who thinks that Mickiewicz was Lithuanian. The thing is that Mickiewicz stared to create historical myth about Lithuania which was very handy for national movement to take off. So it did. At the time all Belorussians and Lithuanians were one nation with two different languages that are not mutual intelligible strangely enough. There were also political Lithuanian nation to which Mickiewicz belonged, which was totally pro Polish in the days thinking.

Look at posts that followed mine they all with an air to ridicule Lithuania. What do you expect? Is it friendly discussion or the bunch of writings to undermine Lithuania and Lithuanians?

I agree that GDL nothing like Lithuania, but it was GDL that took the name from Lithuanian tribe first, not the otherwise. Where is the problem? That Lithuania calls itself in some ways succesor of GDL? Who else then? Beloruss? They don't care!

What drives Polish people crazy is that Lithuanian do not think that the Commonwealth for them was a good thing. Try to think hard why (they might be wrong)? Why Lithuania not so keen in "celebrating the world's second modern constitution and the first in Europe"? Think hard! It will do you a lot of good. Why Lithuania is not so quick buy a myth that the Commonwealth was first prototype of EU? Think hard!
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544  
9 Aug 2009 /  #86
It's a big mistake to equate the historical Lithuania ( "Litwa" ), or the Grand Duchy (GDL), with the modern, small, ethnic country called Lithuania.

True. But than again it's the same story with the Commonwealth and Poland, which similarly to Lithuania and GDL, also thinks of itself as a natural heir of Rzeczpospolita, even though Pl is a homogeneous country these days.

What drives Polish people crazy is that Lithuanian do not think that the Commonwealth for them was a good thing. Try to think hard why (they might be wrong)? Why Lithuania not so keen in "celebrating the world's second modern constitution and the first in Europe"? Think hard! It will do you a lot of good. Why Lithuania is not so quick buy a myth that the Commonwealth was first prototype of EU? Think hard!

I'm actually more than very interested in hearing your story, Nerijus.
lesser 4 | 1,311  
9 Aug 2009 /  #87
Look at posts that followed mine they all with an air to ridicule Lithuania. What do you expect? Is it friendly discussion or the bunch of writings to undermine Lithuania and Lithuanians?

I think that this is yours Lithuanian-centric perspective cause that you wrongly interpret posts above. All I wanted to write is that I find such constructions like GDL or KofP more pleasant than modern national state. While Lithuania is just one of many such states.
David_18 68 | 982  
9 Aug 2009 /  #88
Lithuanians are normal hardworking people like everyone else in the world.

Ofc some Lithuanians don't like to talk about the past, since Lithuania was more of a puppet state to Poland.

Maybe Lithuania was underrepresented in the polish-lithuanian commonwealth. But remember without Poland, Lithuania would't probably exist today.

What would have happend with Lithuania if it would't have joined Poland in a union some hundreds years ago?
McCoy 27 | 1,269  
9 Aug 2009 /  #89
What drives Polish people crazy is that Lithuanian do not think that the Commonwealth for them was a good thing

believe me it doesnt drive us crazy. people who know something about the union are aware why Lithuanians dont find it such a great time as Poles do. but most people dont really care what you think and feel. when someone says Lithuania we think about our history and Vilnus. sleep well cause we dont give a flying fvck about you.
Nerijus  
9 Aug 2009 /  #90
But remember without Poland, Lithuania would't probably exist today.

Not quite. With adoption of Constitution of May 3, 1791 Lithuania became nothing more than a province of Poland like Masaovia or Masuria and only then Vilnius became legally Polish city.

So I am pretty much sure if had not been the partitions there I would have been talking with you here in Polish happily.

What would have happend with Lithuania if it would't have joined Poland in a union some hundreds years ago?

Noboby's here to answer this. They became the province of Russia or Germany? Is there any better to became a province of Poland? There was extreme attempts to make it Russian or Polish. They became neither.

All I wanted to write is that I find such constructions like GDL or KofP more pleasant than modern national state.

I agree up to the point. Each of them carries there own functions, wouldn't it be beautiful to have something in between?

Archives - 2005-2009 / History / Poland and LithuaniaArchived