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'Poland: A Knight Among Nations' - Book about Poland by an American Author, dated 1907


Sokrates 8 | 3,348
3 Jun 2010  #31
Interesting, so all the British, French and even German statesmen who's comments i'm parroting were thought by commies as well?:)
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544
3 Jun 2010  #33
The areas were annexed, not occupied...

But isn't it just nitpicking on words, just like with the issue whether KatyƄ was a genocide or not? Tell me, what exactly is the difference between annexed and occupied in this particular situation?
TheOther 5 | 3,749
3 Jun 2010  #34
what exactly is the difference between annexed and occupied in this particular situation

I use the Wikipedia definitions, if you don't mind.

Occupation:
Military occupation occurs when the control and authority over a territory passes to a hostile army.

An occupied geo-political entity is not necessarely dissolved.

Annexation:
Is the de jure incorporation of some territory into another geo-political entity. Annexation is a unilateral act where territory is seized and held by one state that tries to make its move legitimate by being recognised by the other international bodies (i.e. countries and intergovernmental organisations).

The annexation of the Polish territory was recognized by most nations; thus the country officially ceased to exist.
OP madparasol 2 | 12
4 Jun 2010  #35
I don't get it. I post what I think is an interesting subject. Provide a link to the book which spotlights the Poles under the Partition years through American eyes. Yet somehow this thread has mutated into a bickering over semantics, neo-nazism and overall absolutely nothing that has to do with the topic.

All I ask for is some opinions on the book.
TheOther 5 | 3,749
4 Jun 2010  #36
The content looks interesting, that's all I can say at the moment.

Yet somehow this thread has mutated into a bickering over semantics, neo-nazism and overall absolutely nothing that has to do with the topic.

Welcome to the world of PF... ;)
OP madparasol 2 | 12
4 Jun 2010  #37
Annexation is a unilateral act where territory is seized and held by one state that tries to make its move legitimate by being recognised by the other international bodies (i.e. countries and intergovernmental organisations).

Well done! Great definition to a meaningless word in this case.

"seized and held by one state that tries to make its move legitimate by being recognised by the other international bodies"

Gee..i wonder how hard it would have been to convince the Royal Seeded Europe that a Democratic Poland was bad for business.

Lets take a step back and see what was happening at the time.

"Stanislaw August's process of renovation reached its climax on May 3, 1791, when, after three years of intense debate, the "Four Years' Sejm" produced Europe's first written constitution."

"Destruction of Poland-Lithuania

Passage of the constitution alarmed nobles who would lose considerable stature under the new order. In autocratic states such as Russia, the democratic ideals of the constitution also threatened the existing order, and the prospect of Polish recovery threatened to end domination of Polish affairs by its neighbors. In 1792 domestic and foreign reactionaries combined to end the democratization process. Polish conservative factions formed the Confederation of Targowica and appealed for Russian assistance in restoring the status quo. Catherine gladly used this opportunity; enlisting Prussian support, she invaded Poland under the pretext of defending Poland's ancient liberties. The irresolute Stanislaw August capitulated, defecting to the Targowica faction. Arguing that Poland had fallen prey to the radical Jacobinism then at high tide in France, Russia and Prussia abrogated the Constitution of May 3, carried out a second partition of Poland in 1793, and placed the remainder of the country under occupation by Russian troops." countrystudies.us/poland/11.htm

The Polish Partitions were systematic means for the Autocratic States to make sure that Poland did not become a democracy. They did not want to see a strong Poland because they feared it and knew that they couldn't control it to serve their ends.

BTW
The book mentions that it was during the last years of the Sobieski rule that the Commonwealth started to decline.
pg.152

archive.org/stream/polandknightamon00vannuoft#page/152/mode/2up
TheOther 5 | 3,749
4 Jun 2010  #38
"seized and held by one state that tries to make its move legitimate by being recognised by the other international bodies"

The nations that partitioned Poland tried and succeeded in making their moves legit, because "Amid the distractions of the French Revolution and its attendant wars, however, no state actively opposed the annexations" (from the source you mentioned: last paragraph).

The Polish Partitions were systematic means for the Autocratic States to make sure that Poland did not become a democracy

That and simple imperialism.
Chicago Pollock 7 | 505
4 Jun 2010  #39
Wow! I mean...wow! you most certainly are a "pollack" polak...

From the book:

"Ancient Poland had no middle class, no bourgeoisie, A class so necessary for the perpetuity of a nation. It was in consequence of this inequality in the national character, and as a result of certain fatal diplomatic mistakes, and a false political method, that Poland was reduced to a state of internal anarchy in the 18th Century. She then easily fell a prey to the three neighboring monarchies."
Ironside 47 | 9,571
4 Jun 2010  #41
Ancient Poland had no middle class, no bourgeoisie

I have never heard about the book before but my conclusion is the same, interesting !!
Matyjasz 2 | 1,544
4 Jun 2010  #42
The annexation of the Polish territory was recognized by most nations; thus the country officially ceased to exist.

According to your definition of occupation, an occupied geo-political entity is not necessarily dissolved. Which means that it CAN be dissolved. Moreover, if you really want to pick on words, it doesn't say anything about recognition from other states, which means that basically both words could be used interchangeably…Well at least in this particular case.

Either way, what I do find interesting is why did you feel the urge to bring this subject up?
TheOther 5 | 3,749
4 Jun 2010  #43
Which means that it CAN be dissolved

Yes. And if this happens and is generally accepted by other nations, then it's called annexation. can we get back to the book please

why did you feel the urge to bring this subject up?

Because there are a few folks here on PF who tend to insist that only the Polish version of history is correct. One has to challenge that occasionally. :)
OP madparasol 2 | 12
4 Jun 2010  #44
It's probably still true today, thus the Polish Diaspora.

I was referring to this portion of your comment...but I'm sure you don't seriously believe this. right?

Touché on your response.

I don't contend with what the author wrote in the book (to be honest I'm an amateur historian). One thing I know is that there wasn't simply a single thing that let Poland to its political fate but a conglomerate of serious political errors both internal and external starting about 100 years before its ultimate fate in the 18th century.
MediaWatch 10 | 945
5 Jun 2010  #45
This is probably a true statement.

Indeed the Poles are human and I'm sure over their history of ONE THOUSAND years, they made their share of mistakes and errors.

I can think of a bunch of mistakes the Poles made.
OP madparasol 2 | 12
5 Jun 2010  #46
Because there are a few folks here on PF who tend to insist that only the Polish version of history is correct. One has to challenge that occasionally.

Good point.

There is not a single country on the face of this planet that does not have its own version of its own history. Whether it be true or false or somewhere in the middle. Compare Japanese history through the eyes of the Chinese or American history through the eyes of a Native American Indian tribe...in each case you will hear two different historical versions.

Ultimately you come to "historical truth" when every angle of an issue is exposed, dissected and analyzed.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,013
5 Jun 2010  #47
I don't think there exist the "one and only truth" everybody has to agree with. Viewpoint and time matter. History is no algebra!
OP madparasol 2 | 12
5 Jun 2010  #48
Indeed the Poles are human and I'm sure over their history of ONE THOUSAND years, they made their share of mistakes and errors.

In the words of Alexander Pope (1688-1744)

"To err is human, to forgive divine"

I don't think there exist the "one and only truth" everybody has to agree with. Viewpoint and time matter.
History is no algebra!

I agree with what you say but do you refer to truth or opinion? Because when you say "viewpoint and time matter" that is very gray area...there rarely is a single viewpoint of an event whether historical or not (i realize that this may be an opening to some sort of a joke here :))

Lets say you have an event that was witnessed by 5 (random number, obviously 1 or 2 would have been useless to my point being given) parties, if you ask each of the 5 parties what they saw, they will tell you their individual versions of the event. Hence if you get all the 5 answers you can start piecing the jigsaw puzzle and get a more vivid and accurate picture of the issue as a whole. You would be much closer to the truth in that regard than if you simply took one version of the event as the truth.
Chicago Pollock 7 | 505
5 Jun 2010  #49
ALL CHIEFS AND NO INDIANS!

Continuing from the book:

"Unity is not a Polish virtue. Neither is subordination for the common weal. Every one must lead. There have always been plenty of Princes, Marshals, and Generals in Poland: of obedient privates, very few."
OP madparasol 2 | 12
5 Jun 2010  #50
hey, i can pull random quotes too. if you're gonna do that then at least write down the page number and relevance or the point you're trying to make.

but at least you're reading. i'm proud of you!
greencitizen - | 1
10 Jun 2017  #51
Good Points will come back with comments after reading the book


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