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Why are Poles/Poland disliked by Germans?


pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #1
Polls run in Germany regularly reveal that most Germans don`t like Poles.

ijab.de/aktuell/newsticker/n/show/deutsch-polnisches-barometer-2018-deutsche-und-polen-gemeinsame-geschichte-spaltet-die-europaeischen-nachbarn/
polityka.pl/tygodnikpolityka/kraj/1751244,1,polakow--lubi-tylko-jedna-trzecia-niemcow.read

The following reasons come to my mind.

Do you know any other?

Reason 1 - Historical.

Germans still bear a grudge against Poles for successful resisting the German attempt to recapture and colonize a part of Central Europe. Germans and Poles claimed the same territory and the result was the conflict which lasted, with intervals, since 972 till 1945. After many land shifts, with more than half of today`s Poland owned by Germans in the past, eventually Poles regained all disputed lands, even more than ever before. It is natural for a person to dislike their enemy with whom you wage a deadly war.

Reason 2 -Sociological.

Germans are said to be disciplined, orderly, law abiding, consequent in what they do. Many Poles are said to be chaotic, messy, disorganised, inconsequent, rebellious. When these two opposing characters confront each other, there is little chance for understanding and liking.

Reason 3 -Economical.

Germans had long cherished the notion of the so called Polnische Wirtschaft, in the sense of a badly run business, with incompetent leadership, lousy planning and poor performance. de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polnische_Wirtschaft_(Stereotyp)

Reason 4 -Psychological. (1)

Germans have always believed that due to their outstanding character traits (mentioned above), they are superior to other nations, especially those which don`t possess these features. If one feels superior, it is natural to despise and dislike someone whom you deem inferior, in this case Poles.

Reason 5 - Psychological-Historical (2)

Although Germans generally know little about the crimes their ancestors committed on ethnic Poles in occupied Poland, they did hear sth about it. Besides, Poles constantly return to these topics and demand compensation for material and human losses. You don`t like someone who doesn`t let you forget about past wrongs and even expects financial gratification.
Tacitus 2 | 864
3 Feb 2019  #2
It is natural for a person to dislike their enemy with whom you wage a deadly war.

Unlikely. If you ask most Germans below a certain age, they are rarely aware e.g. about the former German territories. The German article you linked gives imho the most important reason, there is still relatively little exchange between both countries - aside from those who emigrate for work. The language barrier is an obvious problem, and it will take time to change this. Both countries have increased their school and university exchange programs, so the next generation will feel more connected.

That being said, it is not surprising that the current view in Germany is not very friendly towards Poland. I mean what kind of news is the average German likely to hear from Poland? He hears about how PiS is undermining the rule of law, is pointlessly antagonizing Germany over long solved issues (e.g. reparations) and the refusal to help during the refugee crisis has also not gone over well.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #3
If one feels superior, it is natural to despise and dislike someone whom you deem inferior, in this case Poles.

IMHO it's the other way around....when you feel disrespected and don't get the attention you want and you think you deserve that's much more of a reason to dislike someone and call him "arrogant".

I really don't think you will find many Germans who will say they deem the Poles inferior! :)

PS: You can claim reasons 2 and 3 also for Greece (messy, unorganized, badly run etc.). But still many Germans like Greeks nonetheless and spend their holiday every year there to get fried in the sun.

I think that's the main reason, I agree with Tacitus on that. Poland as a holiday destination has surely room to grow and with meeting and getting to know each others the sympathies will rise.
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #4
Unlikely. If you ask most Germans below a certain age, they are rarely aware e.g. about the former German territories

Oh, I see. Similarly young Poles don`t know and don`t care about territieries in the East which once were under Polish control and today are in other countries.

there is still relatively little exchange between both countries - aside from those who emigrate for work.

Yes, immigration. I suppose it is another reason for negative feelings. Generally immigrants are disliked in any country because they are said to steal jobs and increase crime. As long as Poland is less developed/simply poorer than Germany, the immigration flow will continue and Poles will be disliked there

But still many Germans like Greeks nonetheless and spend their holiday every year there to get fried in the sun.

Good argument, but don`t forget that Germans didn`t have a 1000 -year- long territory conflict with Greeks. . WW2 occupation was too short to take it into consideration.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #5
So...is that in truth about polish dislike of Germany?

Because I always ever meet Poles using the history as a reason to distrust/dislike Germans, never the other way around....
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #6
it is not surprising that the current view in Germany is not very friendly towards Poland.

Let`s be frank, current events in Poland, which are indeed unthinkable for an average German, don`t create new bias but strengthen the old one which existed for centuries..
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #7
So...it's really more about the Poles than the Germans, right?
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #8
Because I always ever meet Poles using the history as a reason to distrust/dislike Germans, never the other way around....

That`s interesting. Now I do believe you because, being a disciplined/ law-abiding German, why should you be distorting the truth ?

But...

What if Germans hide their true feelings in fear of breaching the rules of political correctness? It has been gaining more and more popularity in Germany recently. With so many minorities and foreign ethnicities in the country, Germans have learnt to express their opinions about them more carefully, trying to avoid being stigmatised as racists and xenophobes. Simply speaking they hide their true beliefs about Poles, too.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #9
What do you think the Germans in these surveys did? The reason why you started that thread....

Do you think disliking Poles is stigmatized in Germany?

Wouldn't that be rather cool (for Poles)? :)
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #10
So...it's really more about the Poles than the Germans, right?

No. I really want to discuss German attitude. I don`t know why you suspect some hidden agenda here. There isn`t such. If Polish attitude seems to be alluded to, it is just a coincidence because the topics are so close to each other.
Rich Mazur 5 | 3,343
3 Feb 2019  #11
Germans should be daily on their knees thanking the Poles and the Russians for not applying the treble damages principle of law. Under that principle, the court can award the prevailing plaintiff triple the amount of the actual damages. As Poland and the USSR lost the combined 30 million people as a result of the war activities perpetrated by Germany, the winning side should have executed 90 million Germans following their surrender. We did not, thus placing Germany in the state of perpetual gratitude.

In that context, giving Eastern part of Germany to Poland was an equivalent of denying a child second serving of ice cream. It also makes Germans' liking Poles a moot point not worth discussing.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #12
No. I really want to discuss German attitude.

Do you? Then why do you dismiss Tacitus' and mine opinion about that?
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #13
What do you think the Germans in these surveys did? The reason why you started that thread....

Sorry, I meant not surveys but your contacts with your compatriots after you wrote

I always meet Poles using the history as a reason to dislike Germans, never the other way around....

Do you? Then why do you dismiss Tacitus' and mine opinion about that?

I don`t, I am still discussing things. If I dismissed anything, I would be much more straightforward, asking you to stop lying etc . I simply want to make sure and that takes some time. Please, be patient.

It also makes Germans' liking Poles a moot point not worth discussing.

Does it mean we are not going to read you in this thread?
Rich Mazur 5 | 3,343
3 Feb 2019  #14
It will depend how the thread will evolve. They always do.
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #15
I agree with Tacitust. getting to know each others the sympathies will rise.

Yes, but instead of talking about the reasons why Germans dislike Poles, you both concentrated on ways of reducing bad emotions between nations. There will be time for that, too, but in the initial phase of the discussion, I think we should look through reasons - if they hold water etc.

So far, you didn`t agree with reason number 1 [historical ], number 2 (sociological) and 3 - [psychological.]

Tacitus - Unlikely. If you ask most Germans below a certain age, they are rarely aware e.g. about the former German territories.
Bratwurst Boy - I really don't think you will find many Germans who will say they deem the Poles inferior!
Bratwurst Boy - You can claim reasons 2 and 3 also for Greece (messy, unorganized, badly run etc.). But still many Germans like Greeks nonetheless


Germans should be daily on their knees thanking the Poles and the Russians for not applying the treble damages principle of law

Well,, this is not really the topic of this thread. We are not talking about what Germans should feel but instead what they actually feel about Poles and why.

Oops, this forgetfulness of mine is killing me. When thinking what to write in the thread, I had planned to mention religion but eventually I forgot. Sorry.

So,
Reason 6 - Religious

Firstly, when we talk about practiced religious beliefs, Poles are catholics, while most Germans admit to connections with protestantism by tradition. I suppose it may provoke a little distrust or slight suspicion when two denominations meet, let`s not forget that one of most destructive wars in Europe`s history had a religious context.

Even more suspicion might be caused by differences in everyday religious life. While Poles still cling to the Church, take active part in religious ceremonies, etc, most Germans prefer not to be involved in such things. In result, they view Poles as very conservative and tradition-oriented, even on the verge of being sort of narrow-minded.

Also, I must have been sleepy when starting the thread because I probably deleted the part of one of reasons, namely

Reason 3 -Economical.
Germans had long cherished the notion of the so called Polnische Wirtschaft, in the sense of a badly run business, with incompetent leadership, lousy planning and poor performance. de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polnische_Wirtschaft_(Stereotyp)


The full version is:

Reason 3 -Economical.
Germans had long cherished the notion of the so called Polnische Wirtschaft, in the sense of a badly run business, with incompetent leadership, lousy planning and poor performance. de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polnische_Wirtschaft_(Stereotyp) Besides, Poland has always been poorer than Germany and Germans can see it without leaving their country: Poles` favourite cars are second hand ones, first driven by Germans, Polish second hand clothes outlets sell wear imported from Germany etc etc. Where`s the reason for dislike here? Again, contempt towards your poor relatives might cause suspicion and dislike because you never know what they might do, e.g, come to you and demand part of your weatlh just because it is proper to help the needy..
JeLaime
3 Feb 2019  #16
Oh come on, we have to live in the now. Why hate Germans today for what happened during the WWII? Same for Germans, please don't hate on Central and Eastern Europeans, they are hard working unlike the Muslim people that you invited. Turks are hard-working Muslims, but Middle Eastern/Arbic Muslims are totally different than them.

I am certain that modern Germans hate Poles less than the British. Now, the damp islanders beat up on Central Europeans. Even a very beautiful Polish girl was abused till he killed herself by the ugly British girls in her class (you have to look hard to find good-looking British lasses).

"Your people will steal our jobs" -- my British (ironically Jewish - the persecuted now persecutes!) live-in host family said to teenage me about accepting of Central and Eastern European countries in the EU. How "welcoming", not!
Ironside 47 | 9,574
3 Feb 2019  #17
Do you know any other?

they're dicks, that all. lol
If you're looking for some other reasons you missed some more obvious:

- ideological - some Germans are lefties/proegssivies hence they view the Polish people like all lefties as if .....

- ignorance - basically they don't know much about Poland or anything really. It goes the other way around but to the much lesser extended.

- They are collectivists at heart like a hive with orders and ranks and authorities - where the Polish people are individualists.

the British.

dude, stop writing off-topic garbage. That is a separate issue connected to mass immigration and such. You want to discus the Brits, go to an appriopate thread. Geez what a noisy brat!
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #18
Ironside
- ideological - some Germans are lefties/proegssivies hence they view the Polish people like all lefties as if .....
- ignorance - basically they don't know much about Poland or anything really.
- they are collectivists at heart like a hive with orders and ranks and authorities - where the Polish people are individualists.


Out of these 3, I like two which seem credible and suit further discussion - ideological and collectivist vs individualist. Thanks, that`s the stuff I wanted to read when I started the thread.

As for ignorance reason, I don`t understand why it might be a source of dislike when you don`t know sth or somebody. Poles like a few nations in Europe but it doesn`t mean they know so much about them.
Ironside 47 | 9,574
3 Feb 2019  #19
I don`t understand why it might be a source of dislike when you don`t know sth or somebody

If you don't know someone your likes and dislike are guided by stereotypes and prejudices. Prussia produced tonnes of those, Nazi's propaganda added some more. It just doesn't go away completely.
Rich Mazur 5 | 3,343
3 Feb 2019  #20
The title question is so beyond and above that I am shocked nobody so far attacked the very reason why anyone would even ask anything so moronic.

The most barbaric nation on earth, Germany, attacks its peaceful neighbors, causes unimaginable suffering, death and destruction, and now we discussing if the barbarians like or dislike their victims. Have you lost your minds?

My idea of executing the barbarians after the war is actually less crazy. Any aggressive and barbaric country would think twice if my idea was actually accepted as a norm.

When the good guys observe the Geneva Convention, the barbarians are given green light to proceed without the down side. In facts, Germany never had a down side so much that the victor, the US, after rebuilding the barbarians, is now whining about "unfair" trade practices. Sick.
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #21
why anyone would even ask anything so moronic

Please, relax, remember we don`t want to hurt you.

Germany, attacks its peaceful neighbors,

When was that? Should we also remember that once Swedes attacked and destroyed Poland and hold it against them?

we discussing if the barbarians like or dislike their victims.

Yes, we are discussing it because "barbarians" are long gone and I don`t feel being a victim. Do you think some topics are taboo?

PS. On second thoughts, , actually, yes, I was a victim of the German occupation of Poland in the sense that my parents forced me to learn German in order to survive the next potential conflict that was predicted in Cold War times. I generally disliked that duty and indeed felt like a victim.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #22
If you don't know someone your likes and dislike are guided by stereotypes and prejudices.

Wise words! I would agree...

When you don't know anybody personally, all you have to fall back on are stories...
Lyzko 20 | 6,340
3 Feb 2019  #23
Very simply, the reasons are because Germany has always believed herself to be superior to nearly everybody, including the Poles:-)
OP pawian 153 | 8,460
3 Feb 2019  #24
If you don't know someone your likes and dislike are guided by stereotypes and prejudices. .

Yes, indeed but it works both ways, for like and dislike, as you rightly suggested.
Therefore, we can`t take it into consideration because this thread is about dislikes only.

Very simply, the reasons are because Germany has always believed herself to be superior to nearly everybody, including the Poles:-)

This means you agree with Reason 4.
Rich Mazur 5 | 3,343
3 Feb 2019  #25
Please, relax, remember we don`t want to hurt you.

Comment too stupid to respond to.

When was that? Should we also remember that once Swedes attacked and destroyed Poland and hold it against them?

1939. No.

Yes, we are discussing it because "barbarians" are long gone

No, they are not. Until the last one who fired a shot or supported the war in any way or liked Hitler is dead, they are not gone.

I don`t feel being a victim.

The thread is not about you. It's about Poland.

Do you think some topics are taboo?

No.
Please, notice that I answered all of your questions. I even dignified the rhetorical ones. I hope you will reciprocate.
Slavictor 9 | 201
3 Feb 2019  #26
Dislike? Perpetuation of it creates a dialectical situation which can be massaged and amplified to produce an outcome desirable to a third party while weakening the two principals. Keep at each others throats guys. Good boys.
Spike31 2 | 904
3 Feb 2019  #27
"Many Poles are said to be chaotic, messy, disorganised, inconsequent, rebellious"

This empty statement can be dated back to Goebbels propaganda.

"messy"

I pass through Germany on a fairly regular basis and I can vouch that Polish cities and cleaner than German towns.

law abiding

More like : "orders must be obeyed at all times" than law abiding citizens.

consequent in what they do

This is true, I won't argue with that. Despite losing 2 world wars their still trying to enforce their "mittleeuropa" project in Central Europe.

You don`t like someone who doesn`t let you forget about past wrongs and even expects financial gratification.

Sure. Poles should forget and never mention those unbelievable atrocities because this could upset poor Germans ;-) Pawian, have you ever considered you may be a victim of a Stockholm syndrome?
Ironside 47 | 9,574
3 Feb 2019  #28
Germany has always believed herself to be superior to nearly everybody

Phew, that is a very cheap rhetoric. Nearly everyone believed itself to be superior to one or other or anybody else, historically speaking. You're confusing Nazi's anti-scientific dogma about races with a general attitude that was prominent in the 19th century but not only then. Snap out of it, will you.
Bratwurst Boy 5 | 10,015
3 Feb 2019  #29
I think Spike here thinks himself and Poland superior to Germans, am I right? :)
Rich Mazur 5 | 3,343
3 Feb 2019  #30
Pawian, have you ever considered you may be a victim of a Stockholm syndrome?

Even worse. This thread is an attempt to reverse things by an apologist.
Many people did terrible things. But the image of the educated, intelligent, and well-mannered men commanding defenseless women and their children to strip naked in the dead of winter to make disposing of their corpses easier after they are gassed is the image that will never leave me and and should be on the front page of every German school textbook forever. Like in that Pavlov experiment, when I hear German on TV, I think another war movie.


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