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Why is Poland weaker than Russia?


Bobko 9 | 149
3 Aug 2018  #1
This is a historical question I've become somewhat obsessed with, though it may seem an absurd framing to modern observers. After having read some books this summer covering the "Time of Troubles" in Russia, and the reign of Sigismund III in Poland, I became engrossed in the the possible historical counterfactuals. What if Sigismund III did not insist on taking the crown of Russia himself, and allowed his son Wladislaw to continue to reign as Tsar of Russia? What if Poland had a more accommodating policy towards the Cossacks and Tatars, and instead focused more of its attention on Russia? What would the world look like right now if Sigismund was successful in building a Polish-Lithuanian-Muscovite Union?

Lots of questions, basically. Now I want to ask the forum members why they think Muscovy entered an ascendant position in European politics by the middle of the 17th century, while Poland became progressively weaker. Was it the authoritarian nature of Russian government which gave it an edge over the more decentralized, szlachta-run Poland? Was it pre-determined by pure demographics? Or can everything just be blamed on the Swedes?

Finally, do you think if a Polish-Lithuanian-Muscovite Union was formed that it could actually survive? Would the differences between the Catholic and Orthodox parts of the country eventually tear it apart? What language would they speak?

Thanks
Crow 137 | 7,589
3 Aug 2018  #2
You want truth? Brat will tell you. Because Polish western territories, together with people, were taken from Poland. If not for the Rome, Romans and Christianity, Russia would be joke for Poland. No, Russia wouldn`t even exist.

You asked and truth punched you in the face.
OP Bobko 9 | 149
3 Aug 2018  #3
If not for the Rome, Romans and Christianity, Russia would be joke for Poland. No, Russia wouldn`t even exist.

Sorry to rain on your parade, but the Rus state predates the founding of Poland under the Piast dynasty by at least a century and a half. That is, Russia would have "existed" whether Poland embraced Catholicism or not.
Crow 137 | 7,589
3 Aug 2018  #4
No, you didn`t understand.

Prior to founding of Rus and Piast states, Polish ancient linguistic area suffered great losses due to Romanization and Germanization (in itself result of Roman influence). So, Sarmats of ancient Poland were gradually weakened, losing equally territories and people. That all prior to any conflict between Poles and Russians after foundation of Rus and Piast states. See, if not for those loses, if not for such a abnormal pressure, today`s Poland would much bigger population then Russia. Not to say how would Poland look like if not for the loss of western lands. On 1 Russian, would be 3 Poles. At least. That even if we take in consideration Russian loses during Mongol invasion. See?

Not to say how are both- Poles and Russians, in fact, Sarmatian (read Serbian) offspring. So, stay calm, will you. Don`t upset me. Actually, all what is White on this planet is of Sarmatian origin. We Serbians from Lusatia and Balkan (Central Europe) are last bearers of that venerable original ethnic name of us all.

Brat loves you.
OP Bobko 9 | 149
3 Aug 2018  #5
all what is White on this planet is of Sarmatian origin

Hahahahahahahahahahahaha. Thanks for a good laugh.

So in your theory the Goths, which kicked Sarmatian ass from the West, and the Proto-Slavs that kicked their ass from the East, were black Africans, or yellow Asiatics??
Crow 137 | 7,589
3 Aug 2018  #6
I told you. You don`t have information. Didn`t read enough. Plus, you must have feeling.
Vlad1234 14 | 573
2 Jan 2019  #7
Finally, do you think if a Polish-Lithuanian-Muscovite Union was formed that it could actually survive?

This is what ultimately happened 2 centuries later, at the end of 18-th century. But this time it was Russian Empire which swallowed part of Poland and Lithuania rather than the opposite. Which language would they speak if Poland would join Russia in 17-th century? Probably situation would be similar to Ukraine and Belarus of 17-th century where many nobles (including those of Ruthenian origin) spoke fluent Polish and common people borrowed many words from Polish. So, basically there would be no principal problems with mutual understanding. Take in account that in 17-th century Polish and Russian languages were way more similar (and simpler) than now. Some part of their modern differences if the result of recent few centuries developments. Russian city of Smolensk (and vicinities) was under Polish rule for many decades. How long could it survive? I think it would largely dependent on how Polish nobles and kings would treat Ruthenian (Russian, Ukrainian, Belarussian) population. If they would proclaim a policy of Slavic brotherhood and religious tolerance, it could survive for a quite a long, I think, possibly for a centuries. Well, in my perception many Russians would welcome idea of Slavic brotherhood and union and mutual protection if Poles would conduct diplomacy clever enough.

Unfortunately for Poles they've got quite a tong-breaking language. I would got a hard time to speak it comfortably. I don't know if it played any role centuries ago.
FromPetrzalka
2 Jan 2019  #8
Russians (in politics) don't like cooperating, they prefer to be powerful and have puppet states/governments.

I think some of the Russian language was based on Old Church Slavonic, which itself evolved into... Bulgarian and Macedonian.
If some Russian acts snotty you can tell him that he ses Bulgarian letters which is more or less true. ;)

Btw, work/job is "rabota" in Bul = "rabota" in Russian, while most other Slavic languages around Russia use some version of "praca". Russians owe a lot of their culture on Bulgarians/Macedonians. I think even the religion.
ZlotyLew
2 Jan 2019  #9
"What if Sigismund III did not insist on taking the crown of Russia himself, and allowed his son Wladislaw to continue to reign as Tsar of Russia? What if Poland had a more accommodating policy towards the Cossacks and Tatars, and instead focused more of its attention on Russia? What would the world look like right now if Sigismund was successful in building a Polish-Lithuanian-Muscovite Union?"

What it would look like is we would all be where we should be: allies, on the right page and all would realize who the true enemy is: the west and the usa in particualr who sold poland out multiple times and continues to feed polish politicians with fale promises of arnaments and new yaltas. we would also all have the same religion and cyrylic writing and understand eaxh other easier thsn the ukrainians. basically stuff like ls srudio would have been also possible in poland as well as worldscale mafia. it would be pretty cool actually. i always wanted to be russian even in the usa growing up being made fun of as polak i always felt russians were left alone or feared more or there was less to make fun of due to the power of the empire than being a simply small narion polak there.

oh and vor v zakonyes would be in poland too if thst was the case not jsut the countries next door. something tof eel and respect at least unlike the term pollack or toilet cleaner.
jon357 63 | 14,122
2 Jan 2019  #10
as well as worldscale mafia. it would be pretty cool actually

There's no significant appetite in Poland for closer links with the gangster state that is Russia.
jon357 63 | 14,122
2 Jan 2019  #11
It's more about desperation and lack of opportunities/hope as well as crushingly dull small town/village life in Russia. You used to see something similar in Poland until a few years ago, however increased affluence and sophistication have vastly reduced that sort of thing.
Arowarok
2 Jan 2019  #12
I am 100% Poh or born here Jon. Also, I want to add that Russian culture their literacy, their music, their philosophy and architecture is amazing and some of tye most unique in the world. it is like their cukture absorbed the bets from both east and west and fused it into something completely their own. I mean chekov. Have you ever read Chekov? Genius. Even, Rasputin, and Ivan the terrible are fascinating..
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
2 Jan 2019  #13
So was Stalin, but it aint going to make anyone in Poland like the Russians any time soon, unless they are commies themselves of course, but they aint Polish and should be deported to Siberia, along with the the Banderas supporting monkeys.
jon357 63 | 14,122
2 Jan 2019  #14
Most in PL, as demonstrated by CBOS polls, have a distaste for Russia. Understandable given their treatment of Poland and Ukraine.

some of tye most unique

WTF...
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
2 Jan 2019  #15
have a distaste for Russia

You are being very polite bless
jon357 63 | 14,122
2 Jan 2019  #16
I know a Polish woman who won't even eat pierogi ruskie because of the name.
Vlad1234 14 | 573
2 Jan 2019  #17
Russians owe a lot of their culture on Bulgarians/Macedonians. I think even the religion.

Rusyns accepted Christianity from Constantinople when Kievan grand prince Vladimir married Byzantine princess in 10-th century. Formally Christian Church in 10-th century still was united as the Great Schism happened only in the beginning of 11-th century. The "Christianity of the Greek rite of passage" what they call it in 10-th century which predated the Orthodox Christianity in 11-th century after the Great Schism.

Russian and Bulgarian indeed have many lexical similarities and I would whish they would be practically the same language, but unfortunately Russian and Bulgarian are in no way as close as Russian and Polish. I will give you just a one example. Polish has seven cases and Russian has six (which are practically the same as in Polish) while Bulgarian does have...NONE!
mafketis 20 | 7,170
2 Jan 2019  #18
who won't even eat pierogi ruskie because of the name.

I thought that the ruskie wasn't Russian but Ruthenian... Rusyn)
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
2 Jan 2019  #19
pierogi ruskie

My family never used the word ruskie to describe them either, just potato and cheese so it was a revelation to me when I first came to Poland that people referred to them as ruskie.
jon357 63 | 14,122
2 Jan 2019  #20
wasn't Russian but Ruthenian... Rusyn

I think it's the name that gave her the habdabs rather than the origin.

Growing up around Ukranians, I just knew them as pierogi.
mafketis 20 | 7,170
3 Jan 2019  #21
the name that gave her the habdabs rather than the origin.

no, I mean that pierogi ruskie means 'ruthenian pierogies' (ruski is an older form of rusiƄski...)
Vlad1234 14 | 573
3 Jan 2019  #22
What if Poland had a more accommodating policy towards the Cossacks and Tatars, and instead focused more of its attention on Russia?

What history teaches us is that to have excellent diplomatic skills often more important than to have an excellent army.
Spike31 2 | 860
3 Jan 2019  #23
Why is Poland weaker than Russia?

That depends how you measure it.

Let's start with economy. If you look at a size gross domestic product, Russia has a bigger economy due to have 3.5 times as many citizens as Poland.

Yet, if you look at GDP per capita, then Poland is richer: Russia $10,608 per person, Poland $14,468 (this number will rise by 5% this year) despite the fact that in 1989 USRR had higher GDP than Poland.

When it comes to military power Russia sits on 2nd/3rd place due to its nuclear capabilities and the size of an army. There's no doubt about it. Yet most of the military equipment like tanks and air force remembers better days...

And let's not forget that USRR has placed a countless agent d'influence in key places around the world. Russia can still use many of them for their political purpose.
mafketis 20 | 7,170
3 Jan 2019  #24
Let's start with economy

The Russian economy is still based on primitive resource extraction and elements of Russian culture (absence of rigorous property rights) mean that only fools or criminals invest in the economy.
jon357 63 | 14,122
3 Jan 2019  #25
The Russian economy is still based on primitive resource extraction

Henry Kissinger's famous quoue about Russia: "Upper Volta plus nuclear weapons" still stands true. Except Upper Volta is of course now called Burkino Faso.

no, I mean that pierogi ruskie means 'ruthenian pierogies'

I think we're at cross-purposes. It's the word 'ruskie' in the name that she disliked; although educated, I doubt she knew the origin of the dish's name.
ZloteLwy
3 Jan 2019  #26
Like I said, theyre culture was and always will be ahead of anything Poland produced. Their authors or literacy like Dosteyevsky and Chekov, their arts, architecture, history, music (ever listened to the powerful war songs or even their anthem. and compare that to the gay sounding Polish one), they are really fascinating people. nothing can destroy them and read how they riught in ww2. read about the battle of stalingrad. theyre the o ly ones who can fight like that and live on leaves for days.
Spike31 2 | 860
3 Jan 2019  #27
Like I said, theyre culture was and always will be ahead of anything Poland produced

Well, the history has proven otherwise. The main advantage of Russia over Poland was always a sheer brutality, primitive force and a bigger numbers.

As much as I value Russian writers such as Dostoyevsky (although I have to admit that the best writer ever born behind our eastern borders was an Ukrainian named Nikolai Gogol) when it comes to it, a Russian culture have not influenced Polish culture in any significant way. Even when it was brutally enforced on Poles.
dolnoslask 5 | 2,423
3 Jan 2019  #28
Russian culture have not influenced Polish culture

That's the difference between cultured and savage nations, savage primitive barbarians throughout history have invaded raped and pillaged cultured nations, Russia happens to be one of them, no different to vikings, vandals and the likes of Saladin, Genghis khan.

Communism / Socialism also has its way to breed barbarian monsters , Pol Pot, Stalin, Hitler
Vlad1234 14 | 573
3 Jan 2019  #29
Communism / Socialism ... Hitler

?????????????
Tacitus 2 | 841
3 Jan 2019  #30
Some people like to pretend that Hitler was a communist.

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