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Penderecki, Poland's greatest living composer, accused of being SB informer


Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #1
Polish classical-music composer Krzysztof Penderecki has denied allegations that he was an informer for the communist-era authorities.
"I've never been a collaborator of the [communist] Security Services," Penderecki said in a statement sent to the PAP news agency on Friday. He added that he has "no knowledge" of the existence of secret files in his name pointing to his alleged work as an informant.

On Friday, the Niezależna website wrote that a recently discovered document signed by a high ranking intelligence officer during Poland's communist rule indicates that "Penderecki 'was used operationally' because of his frequent trips abroad".

Penderecki is one of Poland's famous musical composers. His work "St Luke Passion" will be performed on Saturday by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
Other people who have been accused of being collaborators include former president Lech Wałęsa.
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #2
has denied allegations that he was an informer

This is the whole problem with lustration. It should be carried out dispassionately while recognizing that communists were no better at record keeping than they were at food distribution and that most charged with interviewing and recruitng people had lots of incentives to fabricate information and little incentive to be truthful.

Instead it's inevitably carried out at the most venal and petty political level possible with the sole aim of damaging political enemies of the moment.

Better no lustration than the sad sideshow that it has been since 1990 which has revealed almost not a single bit of useful information.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #3
sad sideshow

The sad sideshow was the 1992 parlimenatry coup led by Wałęsa whose aim was to prevent the opening of police files. Had they been opened as in other post-commie countries, there would have been a year or two of mayhem but it woudl have made it possible to sort out who as a paid informer had actually hurt others, who signed something but never snitched and who did neither but was framed. By trying to sweep it all under the carpet, the matter keeps resurfacing and poisoning hte poltical stage at every turn. Here it is a quarter of a century later and still it remains a public issue.
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #4
The sad sideshow was the 1992 parlimenatry coup led by Wałęsa

Why do you glorify a simple vote of no confidence (for the most incompetent government in the immediate post communist period)?

there would have been a year or two of mayhem

which Poland could not really afford at the time time

it woudl have made it possible to sort out who as a paid informer had actually hurt others, who signed something but never snitched and who did neither but was framed

Just how do you think that would have worked? There is no evidence possible that most people would accept either way.

The big problem is that there has never been any political will to use the files for any other reason other than to hurt political enemies (regardless of what they did or didn't do in the communist period).

Communism was actually a lotmore.... soft in Poland than in some other countries in the region. At the time it made life more liveable in mnay ways. The cost comes after the fall in that it's much harder to sort through the mess and figure out who really needs to be punished...
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #5
that would have worked?

Why did it work in other countries? Czechoslovakia and the DDR were mega-police
states with far more informers and interal espionage and yet they somehow managed. You don't hear about the issue resurfacing there time and again. They did what they had to and were done with it!

that would have worked?

mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #6
Czechoslovakia and the DDR were mega-police states with far more informers and interal espionage and yet they somehow managed

That's why, the more overt and omnipresent the oppression the easier it is to pick out the oppressors when the system changes.

Poland had a lot more shades of grey which was better at the time (so that Solidarity could be formed and the church had more freedom than in CS or the DDR), but makes picking through the wreckage a lot harder... even if there was the will to do so impartially. There's no will for an impartial examination so the whole thing should probably be left alone...
Harry
7 Mar 2017  #7
Why do you glorify a simple vote of no confidence (for the most incompetent government in the immediate post communist period)?

Same reason that the PiSlamic State have turned a simple case of VIP-induced get-there-itis which led to the deaths of 96 people including Poland's most unpopular president in the free era into an international conspiracy aimed at assassination of the returned messiah. To put it simply, lying about history can be very effective when one is trying to convince the less intelligent to do something, all one needs to do is repeat the lie over and over and over again. For example, there were two twin brothers who in reality volunteered to prosecute dissidents for the commies but who now a significant number of people (mainly old and religious people) will tell you were the primary leaders of the resistance.

You don't hear about the issue resurfacing there time and again.

You might not, but the reality is very different. Here's an article from last month about the Stasi files:
dw.com/en/whos-still-afraid-of-the-secret-police-east-germans-shy-away-from-stasi-files/a-37405101
jon357 63 | 14,122
7 Mar 2017  #8
The PISlamic state tend to do this sort of thing as a distraction. When they publicise one of these 'micro-revelations', (which usually just mean that a perfectly innocent person had been interviewed by the authorities against their will and there's a record of that), there's invariably something else that they'd rather the evening news didn't talk about.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #9
which has revealed almost not a single bit of useful information

Only because it was stopped. If a tough law had been enacted barring former communist officials form public office fotr, let's say, 10 years, there would never have been a Kwaśniewski-Miller circus. PZPR CC officials as PMs, ministers and presidents in a Free Poland -- preposterous!!!, And many of POO's leading lights would have been manning check-out counters, working at McDonald's or as car-park attdendants rather than worming their way into cushy decision-making posts. A truly gresat, patriotic and Catholic Poalnd by now would have been firmly established as Europe's 4th or (if Brexit were to occur) 3rd EU eocnomy. As it is, PiS have had to start the whole process from scratch, and those who should have ended up on the trash heap of history were able to undeservedly get a new lease of life and are now trying to undermine and sobotage the good-change proejct. So it'll take a bit longer, but sooner than many people imagine it will succeed.
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #10
PZPR CC officials as PMs, ministers and presidents in a Free Poland -- preposterous!!!

Yes! How _DARE_ they win free and fair elections, the nerve!

A truly gresat, patriotic and Catholic Poalnd by now would have been firmly established as Europe's 4th or (if Brexit were to occur) 3rd EU eocnomy

Boy, you hate religious freedom, don't you?

As it is, PiS have had to start the whole process from scratch

And have yet to accomplish anything very impressive (as they cover up their own files).
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #11
How _DARE_ they win free and fair elections

Soviet stooges who oppressed the Polish nation did not deserve to be on equal footing with decent anti-communist Poles.The KOR/PZPR clique not only made victimisers and victims equal (which in itself was a travesty of justice!) but adtually provided the vicitmisers with a head start and added benefits.
jon357 63 | 14,122
7 Mar 2017  #12
Soviet stooges who oppressed

You're digging a hole for yourself here, Po...

on equal footing

The thing about democracy is that not everyone likes the result of every election. Perhaps you'd like to compromise democracy in Poland.
Harry
7 Mar 2017  #13
Soviet stooges who oppressed the Polish nation did not deserve to be on equal footing with decent anti-communist Poles.

I'm glad we finally agree on something; it's clear that if those twin brother who volunteered to prosecute dissidents during the commie era had been banned from politics, Poland would have been a far nicer place.

Where do you stand on the topic of those who collaborated with the SB being forced to give back (or sell back, at the price paid plus interest) formerly state-owned property which they 'acquired' as a result of their collaborating with the SB?
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #14
not everyone

As with de-Nazificaiton, in post-war Germany, Nazi criminals were not allowed to stand for election but were put on trial. Why was there no true de-communisaiton in Poland? Becuase the victimisers made sure to cover their tracks and save their backsides. That had nothing to do with democracy. Not treating them as the cirminals they were is what proved a threat to demoracy.
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #15
Why was there no true de-communisaiton in Poland?

Because the downside has always seemed to outweigh the potential upside?
jon357 63 | 14,122
7 Mar 2017  #16
put on trial.

No grounds to try some of those names you try to besmirch.

communisaiton

Socialism is very far from being a crime...

threat to demoracy.

The extreme regime that exists now is certainly a threat to democracy; in fact they despise it
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #17
those names you try to besmirch.

Kwaśniewski and Miller were in the Cental Committee of the PZPR. They were the equivalent of the top officials of the Nazi party in Germany. The Nazis were not allowed to rebadge themselves as for instance the German Naitonal Party of whatever, as the PZPR crowd did, by calling themselves "social democrats".

Poland did not have socialism, It was a subjugated neo.colonial Soviet satellite deprived of sovereignty and ruled from Moscow by proxy stooges such as Kwaśniewski and Miller. Now there are idiots about who would canonise the traitors if they could.
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #18
Kwaśniewski and Miller were in the Cental Committee of the PZPR. They were the equivalent of the top officials of the Nazi party in Germany

Maybe to irrational hysterics. The communist system was generally terrible but not in the same universe as the nazis (Stalin and Ceausescu and Hoxha maybe were).

The Nazis were not allowed to rebadge themselves as for instance the German Naitonal Party of whatever, as the PZPR crowd did, by calling themselves "social democrats".

The Nazis lost a war. The PZPR helped guide Poland out of communism in a peaceful manner. Maybe you wanted other people to die in the streets fighting, but a violent transition would have been far worse for Poland.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,626
7 Mar 2017  #19
Now there are idiots about who would canonise the traitors if they could.

Couldn't agree more. The repeated idolising of someone who willingly signed up to prosecute enemies of the PZPR is a perfect example.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #20
The PZPR helped

The PZPR conspired with soft-on-commies KOR-ites to make sure they wold not pay for their crimes and the power-craving KORites went along. The neo-Trotzkyite "dissidents" achieved the political power they sought whilst the ex-commie Katyń conspirators* took over all the basic strategic areas and....lived happily ever after at the expense of the majorit of Poles. That's how it really was. Or you can believe the prettified fairy-tale version of how the brave,noble commies peacefully gave up power for the good of Poland with no thought to their own selfish interests and dynastic future. Hopefully all that will soon change. Better late than never.

* The whole PZPR and their stooges were engaged in the 45-year conspiracy of silence on the Katyń massacre, although everyone knew the truth from the word go..
mafketis 20 | 7,180
7 Mar 2017  #21
The PZPR conspired with soft-on-commies KOR-ites to make sure they wold not pay for their crimes

Would you have preferred blood in the streets? Even if it was your own?

A soft landing is derided by armchair warriors, but all in all it was a deal worth making.

the brave,noble commies peacefully gave up power for the good of Poland

Please, I'm not an idiot. They did the right thing, the motives are less important. That's Realpolitik. Whinging and whining and complaining because the country has changed does not help anyone.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,626
7 Mar 2017  #22
* The whole PZPR and their stooges were engaged in the 45-year conspiracy of silence on the Katyń massacre, although everyone knew the truth from the word go..

So why on earth do you support any political party that has anything to do with the PZPR and their stooges if you feel so strongly about it, Polly?
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #23
blood in the streets

Highly unlikely. With Gorbachev in power and the conviciton the USSR would not invade, the PZPR gang realised they represented a tiny minority unlike the 10-million strong Solidarity and, knew how much they were hated. Back then the SB types wouldn't have dared to march in the streets to protect their pensions as they did under Kijowski, Petru and Schetyna.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
7 Mar 2017  #24
political party that has anything to do

I do not support such parties which mainly include SLD, PSL and POO nor earlier formations such as ROAD, UD or UW. Buzek's AWS had some ex-commies in hteir ranks but nothing compared to the co-ruling UW. PiS are the most commie-free of the lot!
delphiandomine 83 | 17,626
7 Mar 2017  #25
PiS are the most commie-free of the lot!

But they still have plenty of connections, including many with strong PZPR connections in their families and in their personal lives.

the PZPR gang realised they represented a tiny minority unlike the 10-million strong Solidarity and, knew how much they were hated.

You've forgotten that Jaruzelski was highly respected by the Polish Army and that he had the capability of turning them on their fellow people, as 1981 saw. If Jaruzelski had wanted civil war, he could have had it.
jon357 63 | 14,122
7 Mar 2017  #26
Kwaśniewski and Miller were in the Cental Committee of the PZPR

Very good.

They were the equivalent of the top officials of the Nazi party in Germany.

No, Po, unless they killed six million people and tried to impose their rightist ideology by force.

Maybe to irrational hysterics. The communist system was generally terrible but not in the same universe as the nazis

Quite.

if you feel so strongly about it, Polly?

One day, someone will post the whole ugly story about Po
Harry
8 Mar 2017  #27
PiS are the most commie-free of the lot!

PIS's leader is a man who volunteered to prosecute dissidents during the commie era. PIS's chief of the parliamentary commission for justice is a man who actually did prosecute dissidents during the commie era for crimes such as "acting to disseminate leaflets, magazines and all kinds of literature". PIS's illegally installed as the head of the Constitutional Court is married to a former SB snitch. PIS's choice as Poland ambassador in Poland was an SB snitch. PIS's choices for Constitutional Court judges include a former member of the Party (back in the day when the Party was the PZPR rather than PIS).

If Jaruzelski had wanted civil war, he could have had it.

It wouldn't have been civil: the Czech army was on full alert and would have been more than happy get some revenge for the three Polish invasions of the last century.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
8 Mar 2017  #28
Jaruzelski had wanted civil wa

Jaruzelski was a coward. He tried to induce the USSR to back him up and enter if he couldn't manage alone, but failed. And Free Poladn failed by allowing Jaruzelski, Kiszczak et al to get off scot-free. (Kiszczak received a suspended sentence but spent no time behind bars).

You and your ilk seem bent on prettifyng, sugar-coating and exoneraitng history's most evil system (in terms of victim body count). Your PZPR was an heir to the bloodbaths of Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and the rest. By not openly condemning their crimes, the Polish bolshies became effectiveve accomplices and accessories to their mass murders. As the consummate apologist, you downplay and try to justify their crimes and exaggerate their alleged merits. The bottom line of what you are saying is: IT IS RIGHT AND PROPER THAT THE VICTIMISER/OPPRESSORS WERE REWARDED THE WAY THEY WERE AND THAT THE VICTIMS WERE ADDITIONALLY PUNISHED!
mafketis 20 | 7,180
8 Mar 2017  #29
He tried t

Why do you hate Poland so much? You're narrative paints it as the most hopelessly stupid country in the world.

Poland's peaceful negotiation out of communism was one of the great achievements of the 20th century, and power mad toxic little dwarves who had no part in it want to denigrate it so they can rewrite history and that way become the heroes they were not at the time.

Was the process flawed? Yes. Was it still an amazing achievement? Yes. Does obsessing about the flaws and trying to rewrite history serve any useful purpose besides bloating up the ego of a certain party leader? No.

Whose interest is served by retroactively portraying it as some great portrayal? Not yours and not Poland's.
Harry
8 Mar 2017  #30
He tried to induce the USSR to back him up and enter if he couldn't manage alone, but failed.

There are Czech army officers who very much disagree with you on that point: they had been issued with maps of Poland and live ammunition for the 'exercise'.

Your PZPR was an heir to the bloodbaths of Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and the rest.

If that's true, perhaps you can explain PIS's habit of appointing to senior positions people who were members of the PZPR and why PIS's leader signed up to take part in the persecution of dissidents under the PZPR?


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