Return PolishForums LIVE
  PolishForums Archive :
Archives - 2005-2009 / News  % width 18

Revenge or Justice? Vetting Laws in Poland


Roxy 4 | 16  
4 Jun 2007 /  #1
From "Dateline" Show on SBS Television - Australia
Archives - May 30, 2007

Poles Apart

After the Berlin Wall came down - now 17 years ago - would you believe East Germans were horrified to discover how many of their fellow citizens had been spies for the notorious Stasi secret police. But now Poland is having its "Stasi moment" with plans to open hundreds of thousands of once-secret files, threatening to expose Poles who collaborated with the country's former Communist regime. Debate is currently raging over whether the process will turn into a full-blown witch-hunt. Even Poland's internationally acclaimed foreign correspondent, the recently deceased Richard Kapuchinski, has been labelled a collaborator. Here's Olivia Rousset.

The government wants to punish people who collaborated with the Communist regime

How will they know what's hear say and who really did?? Sounds dangerous to me.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
4 Jun 2007 /  #2
IMOH this will not only ruin people it will ruin Poland's credibility in the EU.
johan123  
4 Jun 2007 /  #3
If these individuals feel that their cooperation was justified and that the information given by them was not detrimental to others. Why should it be a secret? If I worked or lived a long side a communist party informer I have every right to know who the person was and what information was given to the authorities about my person.

As far as any legal proceedings are concerned, those guilty of nothing more than membership of the communist party have nothing to fear. They should ,in fact, be more than willing to open all the files in order to prove their innocence.

In order for Poland to move forward people, whose families and lives were destroyed by the former system, have the right to demand justice. The current confusion is a direct result of not bringing certain individuals to justice. Former high ranking party officials are now honourable members of the upper classes of Polish society. They had the financial capabilities to reposition themselves in free market Poland. Many of their children were educated at western universities. They themselves travelled abroad extensively, had access to foreign currencies and shopped in Pevex's shops. They will also be entitled to very handsome pensions.

These are the very same individuals today that seek to confuse and disinform Polish society about who cooperated. They were also the same individuals who changed, created ,rewrote and destroyed numerous numbers of secret police files prior to the election of this government. Poles have the right to know who they were and how they cooperated. They also have the right to demand compensation from the guilty.

What's more some European powers have little interest in clarifying any of the above for reasons that will be become known in the history books our grandchildren will read. I am afraid very few people in the west can begin to understand or comprehend what has happened. They should, however, consider their own history and decision making processes before lecturing Poles about how to treat former communist criminals. They should first explain the reasons behind the decisions taken after the second world war. The reasons behind " Yalta". The reasons behind the recognition of the illegal Polish government (put in place by Moscow) after the second war world.

The very same reasons today are being used to justify the EU's close cooperation with Russia. A Russia infiltrated with former KGB agents in all areas of economic and political life. A Russia who rewards cooperation with riches and punishes dissent with murder.
TheKruk 3 | 308  
4 Jun 2007 /  #4
i think if someone is guilty of wrongdoing and harm to their people they should be held accountable. But I do also fear a witchhunt. Sticky sticky. But traitors should be punished no matter how long after the fact.

I believe Johan has a good point but as I said oohh it is a sticky one to straighten out.
Varsovian 92 | 634  
4 Jun 2007 /  #5
The files contain lies and truth, all mixed up together.
There is little point diverting public attention from current political concerns. The regime change in 1989 was essentially a trade-off: we forget about the past and you go quietly ... with your ill-gotten gains.

Poland's now got high growth, a plummetting unemployment rate (for various reasons) and the EU is co-funding investments in Poland's infrastructure. Let's talk about getting the tax rates down and cutting expenditure on non-essential public services, while giving pay rises to decent doctors and nurses and kicking out nurses like the one who argued with me about her not wanting to pick up a pillow which had fallen on the floor when I could barely move in bed.

You can see what motivates me - getting good value out of govt now and in the future, not the settling of old scores between a bunch of liars and cheats - all of whom claim to have Truth on their side.
TheKruk 3 | 308  
4 Jun 2007 /  #6
The regime change in 1989 was essentially a trade-off: we forget about the past and you go quietly ... with your ill-gotten gains.

If that truly is the case then ok let the former collaborators rest in peace.
and very true poland could better use the money for more necessary programs, and paying less tax is one of them.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
4 Jun 2007 /  #7
Traitors should be finally punished.
Varsovian 92 | 634  
5 Jun 2007 /  #8
The present-day population of Poland should be punished continually by politicians concentrating on the past.

How ... errr ... forward-thinking.
davidpeake 14 | 451  
5 Jun 2007 /  #9
This will just keep coming up in the news forever if nothing is done. I do beleive the Czech goverment opened all there files up for everyone to see.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
5 Jun 2007 /  #10
but what about people that were involved because of threat to their families ect... Im not nieve enough to think that all were involved for these reasons but I dont honestly see anything good coming out of it...

Let sleeping dogs lie and get one with life thats what I say...anger breeds hatred and thats not the right direction for an up and coming country to go, but thats an outsiders view
johan123 1 | 228  
5 Jun 2007 /  #11
The regime change in 1989 was essentially a trade-off: we forget about the past and you go quietly ... with your ill-gotten gains.

This is a lie!

Let sleeping dogs lie and get one with life thats what I say...anger breeds hatred and thats not the right direction for an up and coming country to go, but thats an outsiders view

What's more some European powers have little interest in clarifying any of the above for reasons that will be become known in the history books our grandchildren will read. I am afraid very few people in the west can begin to understand or comprehend what has happened. They should, however, consider their own history and decision making processes before lecturing Poles about how to treat former communist criminals. They should first explain the reasons behind the decisions taken after the second world war. The reasons behind " Yalta". The reasons behind the recognition of the illegal Polish government (put in place by Moscow) after the second war world.


The present-day population of Poland should be punished continually by politicians concentrating on the past.
How ... errr ... forward-thinking.

These are the very same individuals today that seek to confuse and disinform Polish society about who cooperated. They were also the same individuals who changed, created ,rewrote and destroyed numerous numbers of secret police files prior to the election of this government. Poles have the right to know who they were and how they cooperated. They also have the right to demand compensation from the guilty.

What's your family background Varsovian!
lef 11 | 478  
6 Jun 2007 /  #12
Let sleeping dogs lie and get one with life thats what I say...anger breeds hatred and thats not the right direction for an up and coming country to go, but thats an outsiders view

You may want to tell that to our Jewish friends, who still are trying to draw blood to events that occurred some 60yrs ago. The situation is a bit different in Poland in the fact that hard line communist who were nothing more than thugs in the previous system have resurfaced and are taking up key posts in government and business.

Poles may well hate the Russians and Germans but nothing more worse than a traitor in your own ranks.
Varsovian 92 | 634  
6 Jun 2007 /  #13
Cardinal Wyszynski's family did alright under Communism as well.
Ergo ... his family should be dispossessed of land in Konstancin.
No - can we just fast forward to economic growth please.

The damage was done, the previous elite has handed/is handing over the reins to their friends and family - let's punish them too for the sins of their fathers, shall we?
johan123 1 | 228  
6 Jun 2007 /  #14
The damage was done, the previous elite has handed/is handing over the reins to their friends and family - let's punish them too for the sins of their fathers, shall we?

These are the very same individuals today that seek to confuse and disinform Polish society about who cooperated. They were also the same individuals who changed, created ,rewrote and destroyed numerous numbers of secret police files prior to the election of this government. Poles have the right to know who they were and how they cooperated. They also have the right to demand compensation from the guilty. [/quote]

let's punish them too for the sins of their fathers, shall we?

Those guilty of crimes against the people should be punished !

Revenge or Justice? Vetting Laws in Poland

Both! Justice can always be complimented by revenge.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
6 Jun 2007 /  #15
johan123

you are right I dont understand but I dont see the point in raking up things, what about the Poles that fort with the Germans in WWII because they feared for their families and were told either fight with us or we kill your family????- what about them or are they exempt from bad treatment
johan123 1 | 228  
6 Jun 2007 /  #16
Amathyst we are not considering whether or not Joe Bloggs should be punished! W

We are concerned with people that held positions of power and influence!

Former high ranking party officials are now honourable members of the upper classes of Polish society. They had the financial capabilities to reposition themselves in free market Poland. Many of their children were educated at western universities. They themselves travelled abroad extensively, had access to foreign currencies and shopped in Pevex's shops. They will also be entitled to very handsome pensions.

Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
6 Jun 2007 /  #17
what about the Poles that fort with the Germans in WWII

Many of them were simply killed.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
6 Jun 2007 /  #18
Amathyst we are not considering whether or not Joe Bloggs should be punished! W

I understand

We are concerned with people that held positions of power and influence!

Again, now I understand

Archives - 2005-2009 / News / Revenge or Justice? Vetting Laws in PolandArchived