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Poland Lithuania - current relations


lalala
27 Apr 2011  #31
Poland is not in Central Europe but Lithuania is... interesting,
and by the way,it seems there are several midpoints of Europe .one of them is in Poland en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geographical_midpoint_of_Europe

as for the last statement- i agree. but then why Lithuanians don't learn English.90% of Lithianians i met in GB couldn't speak a word of English.and if they don't- they should go back to Lithuania
Piast Poland 3 | 182
27 Apr 2011  #32
Poland is in Central Europe, whether you like it or not. Politically, culturally for the most part and geographically. Like someone said Poles have always lived there and have the right to use their language. Just as Lithuanians have where they live in Poland.
gumishu 11 | 4,955
27 Apr 2011  #33
Lietuva lietuviams.

that actually speaks for itself - if you exclaimed Polska dla Polaków in Poland you would be instantly deemed xenophobic nationalist (or worse)
hague1cmaeron 14 | 1,377
27 Apr 2011  #34
If you want to speak Polish - go back to Poland

This is the type of attitude that Poles in Lithuania are subjected to, sadly by most Lithuanian politicians. This is the consequence of a policy which unfortunately during wartime and later rid the country of its intellectuals, and subjected the majority of the population to sovietisation and anti Polish propaganda. This has unfortunately impeded the Lithuanians and rendered them incapable independent thought.
hubabuba - | 113
27 Apr 2011  #35
The peasants: Polish, Lithuanian, Ukrainian, Belorussian speaking were only "Ludzie Tutejsze" (local people). They did not belong to any "nation"

how will You explain the Kosciuszko uprising? "ludzie tutejsze"is a term used by Belarusian peasants just after the war, when the borders were changing
OP Jurgis 1 | 6
29 Apr 2011  #36
Thank you everybody for your answers.

Only general politics changed - Kaczyński's policy of strong Central Europe vs Tusk's policy of good relationship with Germany and Russia. Loss for Lithuania.

That explains a lot. I've heard of Kaczyński's and Tusk's rivalry. Is this shift of policy and confrontation visible clearly? Were those official views of the two?

- receiving back properties lost by Poles in Lithuania during WW2

This is an interesting problem. I do not know much about it and I could say that it is discussed less than others. The overall impression is that almost no lands are returned (not only to Poles, but to Lithuanians or Jewish people too). Have you had the same problems in Poland? If so how did it go?

On the other hand, they are trying to diminish the Polish influence in/on their country because they fear another Polish cultural colonization. That is why they are refusing to acknowledge the rights of Polish minority etc etc.

A very good point. I think Lithuanians in Poland consist less than 1% of the whole population. However 6% of Lithuania's population are Poles. Vilnius city municipality contains 19.4% Poles and Vilnius district - 62.5% according to 2001 Lithuanian census. Maybe the fear of polish cultural colonization is not present (because the gap between two cultures is not as big as it was), but Lithuanians definitely fear Polish influence.

I have to admit that I don't know the facts - but - are Poles in Lithuania enjoying the same liberties as Lithuanians in Poland (there is a small are north of Suwałki with Lithuanian majority)

I tend to think that Lithuanians in Poland have more liberties. If it is so then it illustrates the whole picture well. There are around 5000 Lithuanians and around 235000 of Poles in Lithuania. So there is "no danger" of giving Lithuanians their liberties, because they would never have even a small influence to Poland. Different with Poles in Lithuania. But the fact that Lithuanians in Poland claim that there are some problems with cultural preservation actually proves that Poland's policy towards Lithuania is not aggressive. Because if Poland would like to have bigger influence on Lithuania it should escalate these problems, favour Lithuanian minority with benefits and showcase it as an example.

That is a massive understatement. Lithuanian complex of Polish colonization is as big as Mount Everest.

Could you expand your thought? Why do you think it is like that?

One of the problems with this discussion is it confuses modern national identities with earlier identities.

Good point. Excuse me if I mixed up everything in my first post. In fact, I would say that imposing modern identities, circumstances or even way of thinking is one of the biggest mistake when disccusing about history. And it misleads the people and the whole discussion. That's why I intend to discuss the matters separately.

Today's Gazeta Wyborcza re-prints an open letter of Lithuanian intellectuals "Litwini do Litwinów"

That is very interesting. I found the Lithuanian version of this letter and it makes me curious why only these people signed it. I there some sort of polish intellectuals position concerning these issues?

tautmyla:
Lietuva lietuviams.

that actually speaks for itself - if you exclaimed Polska dla Polaków in Poland you would be instantly deemed xenophobic nationalist (or worse)

Do you regard this as a victory or a loss? Maybe it is only a matter of ones beliefs, but do you not think that these accusations would be too radical? This is important because currently some Poles are appealing that Lithuania is breaking EU minorities laws. I agree that you need to follow and obey agreements, but you always need to see the whole picture. However that is why in my first post I mentioned that defending minorities laws could be used as a political weapon, but used in such a way to remind laws and justice.

I am not saying it is like that now, I'm only strengthening my main point. Maybe it would be easier to solve minorities problems if countries would neglect the instant deems of someone being xenophobic and promote patriotism, but at the same time raise the respect for minorities. Or do you think that patriotism and well being of minorities are incompatible?

This has unfortunately impeded the Lithuanians and rendered them incapable independent thought.

Maybe not only those things which you mentioned. But there is a huge problem of Lithuanians being incapable of independent thought. It is a serf/bondman syndrome. Are there any signs that Poles have the same problem?

Thinking more about the subject and discussing it with you I feel that a loss of respect of Polish and Lithuanian nations for each other is a harmful thing for both. The current problems could be solved somehow, but in my opinion they are not big enough to seriously damage Poles or Lithuanians lives, but it is big enough to cause moral degradation. Because if some future events would threaten our nations they could not trust each other properly.
hague1cmaeron 14 | 1,377
29 Apr 2011  #37
I am 100% in agreement with your sentiments; there is a lot in the history of the two nations that should link them together. In regards to what you describe serf/bondman syndrome I think that there would a degree of residue left over from the previous two centuries that colours the perceptions of Poles in their view of the Russians and Germans.
z_darius 14 | 3,971
29 Apr 2011  #38
Thinking more about the subject and discussing it with you I feel that a loss of respect of Polish and Lithuanian nations for each other is a harmful thing for both.

I know no Lithuanians and I heve never been to your country but I heard wonderful stories form my dughter. She visited your country last year and she was warned not to speak Polish inLithuania as people would treat her poorly.

According to her, nothing could be further from what she exerienced. She spent 3 weeks in Lithuania, and all Lithuanias she met were wonderful and very helpful even though she did not hide the fact the she is Polish. She travelled with a Polish fella and Lithuanian people offered them car rides when they missed a bus, some offered shelter for a night or two and one couple invited them to their home for a week and showed a few interesting places of interest. Many spoke Polish.

She visited about a dozen EU countries + Turkey and Tunesia last year. She disliked Ukraine (people nasty towards Poles), didn't fall in love with Tunisia, and she hated the Islamic Republic of Belgium that she said felt like a gutless eunuch :) She's back in Canada but the two areas in EU she liked the most and plans to visit again were Sicilly and Lithuania.

It would seem the Polish-Lithuanian bullshhit comes from the politicians and from the dumbasses on both sides of the border.
GrzegorzKoziol
29 Apr 2011  #39
1) Lech Kaczynski was a true Pole and a patriot, Komorowski and Tusk will never fill his shoes. He had guts, Komorowski is weak

2) In a normal election Komorowski would lose, only reason he won is because it was months after death of Kaczynski and Polish people were still mourning his death

3) Komorowski is not even a true Pole, he's from Lithuania, he spent most of his life in Lithuania, his family also is from Lithuania

4) Komorowski and Tusk have some stupid policies, like trying to get Poland to join EU... big mistake, since the EU is failing now and Poland would not benefit only Germany and France benefit from EU because they are biggest country and thus have most power in the EU..Poland would be **** on and disrespected, Polish people don't want to re-live that. Poland was the only country to grow it's GDP the last 2 years in

5) Komorowski and Tusk are weak and fail to confront Russia and Putin on Kaczynski's death

6) Komorowski calls Russia a "potential strategic partner"

7) Polish people will not re-elect these 2 clowns
alexw68
29 Apr 2011  #40
1) If Kaczyński was so bloody strong, why did he get steamrollered by his daughter's husband into granting him łaski for his suspicious business activities? Don't confuse a short temper with strength. The man was utterly out of his depth on the European and global stage (though he did show statesmanship in the Georgia episode, if you forget the way he slandered his pilot for diverting to Baku)

2) Hypotheses don't win elections, normal or otherwise. Were you here at the time of the Presidential elections? Did you see the sackcloth and ashes? I was, and I didn't - certainly not to the level required to make this fantasy of yours fly.

3) Ah, the old 'true Pole' canard. Aren't you just a little embarrassed by resorting to that level of argument? Ah, whatever, two words for you: Adam Mickiewicz.

Oh, and sorry: 4). Too ridiculous to quote in full, I'll save your blushes. Just two points: a) EU subsidies helped a lot with business development, don't imagine they didn't. Political self-regard comes a distant second to improved infrastructure and other facilities for everyone who isn't a politician; b) if Poland posted two years of growth since 2008, the only EU member to do so, where's the problem with EU membership? It clearly didn't hold the country back.
Gregrog 4 | 100
29 Apr 2011  #41
Jurgis - here you have long article about relations between our countries - history background, constitution base, denationalisation, administration, education, citizenship and relations of both countries. Sadly it is in Polish, so you have to use google translator or something similar.

Obeying laws of polish minority in Republic of Lithuania
stosunki-miedzynarodowe.pl/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=903%3Aprzestrzeganie-praw-polskiej-grupy-etnicznej-w-republice-litewskiej&catid=84%3Apolityka-zagraniczna&Itemid=114
z_darius 14 | 3,971
30 Apr 2011  #42
We have to find the solution.

The solution is simple - get civilized.

None of the problems described took place in Lithuania even though, surprisingly, a lot of people spoke Polish very well. Within minutes they decided which language would have been the easiest for all and nobody was bittching about anybody's lack of the ability to speak Lithuania. They just had a god time.

And that is the main difference between Ukrainians, who allegedly like Poles, and Lithuanians who allegedly don't. Your post, referring to someone you never met, and based on a two sentence paraphrase of a week long visit to Ukraine, in such a thick and primitive manner is a further case in point. While I can communicate with Ukrainian speaking persons, she can't and I'm glad she didn't waste any time or money of Ukrainian phrase books. I bet they don't contain "fukc you" which at this point appears to be the only thing one might want to say to a Ukrainian.
Nathan 18 | 1,363
1 May 2011  #43
And that is the main difference between Ukrainians, who allegedly like Poles, and Lithuanians who allegedly don't.

I hate dumb tourists from Poland. If you are dumb, why travel? Stay at home and learn your fifth language. Lithuanians seem to have more patience than I do.

I bet they don't contain "fukc you"

You see, it would have been worth it. But it is difficult for those who speak four languages - it might have caused her a stroke.
Seanus 15 | 19,707
1 May 2011  #44
Kozioł, you are a total buffoon. Poland joined the EU in May 2004 whereas Tusk came into power in Oct 2007. Komorowski is a recent addition to the highest circles. Stupid policies? ROTFL

I agree that politicians have inflamed the situation but there didn't seem to be any problems between Poles and Lithuanians when I was there in Vilnius and in Kaunas.

I was talking to a student of mine who talked of Polish hypocrisy. He wasn't happy with how his countrymen still cling onto Lithuanian territory as if it had never passed hands. He is happy with the current borders of Poland and wasn't too perturbed when I told him that the Lithuanian administration now require Poles to register their names in Lithuanian language. I can't talk to the accuracy of this but I've heard it from different sources.

I'm glad that Lithuanians have carved out a semi-strong identity for themselves. They are more secure now and will no longer be treated merely as a sandwich state between Russia and Poland.
Sokrates 8 | 3,346
1 May 2011  #45
Genocide is always the answer.
Seanus 15 | 19,707
1 May 2011  #46
No, building ties based on common heritage is. The problem with Slavs is almost always nationalism. Just look at the Balkans. Also, Mickiewicz was born in what is now Belarus and also strongly identified with Lithuania where he spent a very long time. Why not jointly celebrate such a man? Dzień Mickiewicza :)
Sokrates 8 | 3,346
1 May 2011  #47
No, building ties based on common heritage is.

After you kill off the natives of course.

The problem with Slavs is almost always nationalism.

The problem with Scots is almost always nationalism.

Also, Mickiewicz was born in what is now Belarus and also strongly identified with Lithuania where he spent a very long time. Why not jointly celebrate such a man? Dzień Mickiewicza :)

Because Lithuania is small, why build ties when we can murder them and not share anything?
Seanus 15 | 19,707
1 May 2011  #48
Too many have already suffered through hateful approaches. Time to correct that.

Scots are more patriotic :)

What does size have to do with it? Mickiewicz and Piłsudski worked hard to get closer to Lithuania and they didn't consider size as a factor.

If size is important, then why be so pally with The Vatican?

Lithuania is, by far, the most Catholic of the 3 Baltic states. Doesn't that mean anything to your badge culture?

Aha, so it's a nice country if you are Polish. Thanks for confirming that :)

What kind of abuse?

As a Scot more specifically.

Please keep to one subject. I'm not going to move many more of your off topic comments.
Nathan 18 | 1,363
1 May 2011  #49
I dont see the point here, if they got angry over something like that they're retarded.

And if someone makes retarded people angry, then the person has to be a moron squared. *Lithuania is close to Poland and languages are important*
PennBoy 76 | 2,437
1 May 2011  #50
Lithuania is, by far, the most Catholic of the 3 Baltic states. Doesn't that mean anything to your badge culture?

People these days are Catholic on paper, atheists in practice. The Czechs have long been non believers i don't see god punishing them for their crime, quite the opposite.
Seanus 15 | 19,707
1 May 2011  #51
It seems to be that way, PB. Latvians have a greater mix which implies that they think more about it based on various factors and don't just jump on the bandwagon.

One thing in common between Poland and Lithuania? The great bread. I can imagine Brits laughing at this kind of comment but bread is hugely important in Poland and the Baltic states. Like God's own food.
Ironside 47 | 9,586
1 May 2011  #52
The problem with Slavs is almost always nationalism.

Lithuanians aren't Slaves.
Problems with all the sates between Russia and Poland is that those states had been connected with Poland for about 500 years, including about 300 years as a part of the common powerful civilisation.

At the same time they have common past with Russia, being colonised, destroyed, modelled and changed by Czarist Russia Assyrian like empire and then by butchers and live destroyers - Soviets!

No wonder that people in those states are confused, even Poles are confused.
Re-establishing common ground would be very difficult, and Russians are working hard to prevent this from happening.
pawian 157 | 8,616
2 May 2011  #53
Re-establishing common ground would be very difficult, and Russians are working hard to prevent this from happening.

Yes, the affairs and relations are really messed up here. Lithuanians don`t want Polish influence but stick to Poland in case Russians strike. Poles want to defend their minority in Lithuania but simultaneosly are afraid Lithuania might fall prey to Russian imperialism again. Russians would like to extend their rule over the Baltics again but are afraid of new Cold war with the rest of Europe.

It will take not years but decades to solve that all.
Gregrog 4 | 100
2 May 2011  #54
I hate dumb tourists from Poland. If you are dumb, why travel? Stay at home and learn your fifth language. Lithuanians seem to have more patience than I do.

Really? Fifth language? My friends, who many times went to Ukraine to buy fuel, cigarettes and other cheaper stuff had to know one thing to connect with Ukrainians - "tradycju znajuł? 20 hrywien" - "know the tradition? 20 hrywna" which they had to pay to every policeman they met. I wonder what will happen during Euro 2012 when half of Europe will go there - do they will have to know Ukrainian?

Oh Nathan - you will be so pissed off :)

Tell me please why when somebody know 4 languages, the 5th had to Ukrainian? Is this obligatory?

He is happy with the current borders of Poland

You see, I'm also glad of current borders, but when I hear that in other countries Poles are treat like that I can't sit and feel that everything is fine. When somebody will call me to attack other country to reclaim land that was lost 70 years ago I will call him a foul, and If he would force that I would opposite him hard.

You are referring to one guy, one opinion - as many Poles as many opinions:) He only forgot that there live Poles too.

Also, Mickiewicz was born in what is now Belarus and also strongly identified with Lithuania where he spent a very long time.

Problem is that Poles sees history differently to Lithuania's. For Poles Commonwealth was a great success, for them it was destruction of Lithuania. It's too big differences.

Comment about nationalism is a bullshit:)
Coming to Mickiewicz - tell me please why Belarusians would like to call him someone important to them? Had he done something important to this country? Same to Lithuania. Is this one line of text enough? "Litwo, ojczyzno moja" - same as

"Podkarpacie, ojczyzno moja"
"Pszczyna, wiosko moja"
It is reference to region, land, which used to be part of commonwealth. He was a Pole, wrote in Polish so what he has common with present day Lithuania? Sorry, no way:)
gumishu 11 | 4,955
2 May 2011  #55
Komorowski is a recent addition to the highest circles. Stupid policies? ROTFL

of course he meant euro-zone - and Tusk once sprang up with a plan to join the eruo-zone as soon as possible - firstly Poland was not ready in terms of inflation rate and other economic factors - then the slowdown came - and it is believed own currency saved a lot businesses in Poland and helped economic growth - countries which recently adopted euro or were in the process suffered badly (Slovakia, Lithuania, Latvia) - if Poland made a decision to join euro-zone back then we would need to wait 3 years with a next to stiff exchange rate euro-to-zloty which could prove very harmful - there is also a very difficult decision to make which rate of official euro-to-zloty exchange rate to aim for (there is a difficult balance - and Poland and Eurozone have antagonistic interests in that matter)

I am a lay person in those econimic matters so I'm writing from my best understanding - hope it makes sense
Seanus 15 | 19,707
2 May 2011  #56
I was only going on what he had written.

Poles and Lithuanians tend to follow different sports with football being the exception. Poles prefer winter sports and volleyball whereas Lithuanians are big on basketball. They have a super team and I enjoyed watching them in the last WC in Turkey.
Mr Grunwald 19 | 1,541
2 May 2011  #57
whereas Lithuanians are big on basketball.

No big surprise, their quite tall (all my tall family members were of the Lithuanian extraction in the family)
Seanus 15 | 19,707
2 May 2011  #58
I-S, I know they aren't Slavs. I was referring to the Belarussian aspect through Mickiewicz and also the Balkans.

Greg, the land itself doesn't change but the ownership of it does. If the process of handing over goes smoothly then I'm all for it provided the relevant consent has been received. As long as they did it in a more cordial and tactful manner than Britain handled the creation of Israel. Britain is the perennial f***-up nation when it comes to foreign affairs of that kind.

Mr G, tall they are :)
OP Jurgis 1 | 6
13 May 2011  #59
Obeying laws of polish minority in Republic of Lithuania

Thanks, I will ask someone to translate it.

I'm glad that Lithuanians have carved out a semi-strong identity for themselves. They are more secure now and will no longer be treated merely as a sandwich state between Russia and Poland.

Good point. This identity forms a backbone of the country. And currently Lithuania is trying to establish it. The problem is that it might be too harsh, which raises reaction on other states and vice versa. Just like you mentioned some polish hypocrisy.

But it is a hard thing to treat a nation equally, by not applying past parameters to present day. Also by knowing that they are not equal by power, size or even intellectual resources.

Lithuania is, by far, the most Catholic of the 3 Baltic states. Doesn't that mean anything to your badge culture?

This means a lot not only to the culture but to the very essence of what is the country itself.

Re-establishing common ground would be very difficult, and Russians are working hard to prevent this from happening.

tere

It will take not years but decades to solve that all.

Interesting reasoning. Do you think that a strong common ground would be a good step? Or maybe this is unsolvable in a political level?

Problem is that Poles sees history differently to Lithuania's. For Poles Commonwealth was a great success, for them it was destruction of Lithuania. It's too big differences.

As I was learning history at school I was thrilled why are the topics after Lublin have less and less feeling of "great success", later that made sense to me. On the other hand I couldn't say that Lithuanians see that period as a destruction of Lithuania. The saddest thing for Lithuanians, in my opinion, is not that Poland was the bigger power of the Commonwealth but that Lithuanians elite were abandoning their identity.

This is still an interesting topic for me, and especially the period of the modern Lithuanian nation appearance. My second question would be about XIX century conservatism and conservatism tradition in the emerging countries of modern Lithuania and Poland.

Sadly The Commonwealth was eliminated by the time of the French revolution and the beginning of conservatism. But the identity never vanished and was constantly demonstrated in the uprisings. Even in the 1863 uprising there were more aristocratic "white's" and more democratic "red's", at least it was so in Lithuania. And then suddenly at the beginning at the XXth century nationalism takes top.

What was the effect of conservatism in occupied Commonwealth, especially the western parts of Poland? Was it the impetus for the uprisings? Was there a way for Lithuania to declare it's independence and construct it's modern nation in more conservative way? Or would it definitely have led to a union or even incorporation into Poland?

I would be glad if you would share your opinions.
Malopolanin 3 | 134
13 May 2011  #60
We should invade Lithuania in the name of peace and human rights protection.


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