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Source: (consider it) Thread: WTF, Poland?]
LutheranChik
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How worried shoukd we all be by the white nationalist/neo- Nazi surge in Poland?

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lilBuddha
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Yes, because it is part of a trend and because 60 thousand people. Dumb fuckers.

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So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

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Ohher
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I wonder when white people will figure out that they constitute a minority of the world's population. Not the ideal bargaining position.

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From the Land of the Native American Brave and the Home of the Buy-One-Get-One-Free

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Golden Key
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# 1468

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Question (and we discussed this when there was a huge influx of refugees to N. Europe):

Does an ethnically-based country *have* to take in outsiders, people who aren't of their ethnicity? If so, is it ok to do it just when refugees or disaster survivors need, say, less than year, while people figure things out? Or are countries obligated to take in anyone on a permanent basis?

If the current citizens of an ethnically-based country can't/ don't/ won't accept the long-term presence of foreigners, does it do anyone any good to *push* them? At the very least, the citizens are apt to resent both the newbies and the gov't.

My country (US) is supposed to be a country of immigrants; but we don't always handle that well, either.

I'm not remotely defending mistreatment of immigrants, or white supremacists, or any of that. But the principle of taking in people in trouble keeps running into trouble. Pragmatically, is there a way to work this out, so that refugees, etc. are safe, and so that people used to a primarily ethnically-based country can cope, too?

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

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mousethief

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I think there is a line that is crossed at some point in history. On one side, "Germans" (to take an example) are people who speak German, in one of the many little kingdoms scattered across northern Europe. Then a nation-state is formed, and now a "German" is someone who is a citizen of that state. The German-speakers in Switzerland or Czechland or Austria are no longer Germans. But anybody moving to Germany from (say) Rwanda and naturalizing becomes a German (new meaning) even though they are not descended from German-speaking grandparents.

And I suppose the white nationalists, German-style, are those who want to jettison the new meaning and return to the old.

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“Religion doesn't fuck up people, people fuck up religion.”—lilBuddha

Posts: 63107 | From: Ecotopia | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
I wonder when white people will figure out that they constitute a minority of the world's population.

They have, and that is part of the problem.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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mousethief

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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
I wonder when white people will figure out that they constitute a minority of the world's population.

They have, and that is part of the problem.
The whites in Apartheid South Africa certainly knew it.

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“Religion doesn't fuck up people, people fuck up religion.”—lilBuddha

Posts: 63107 | From: Ecotopia | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
Golden Key
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mt--

I gather that Germany and Germans have never been particularly accepting of the Other. Resenting guest workers, resenting refugees, and then there was that whole WWII thing.

If they're simply not prepared to cope, don't want to cope, won't cope, might it be better if they just didn't let the Other in? Except maybe as tourists?

Same thing with Japan. Probably Sweden and Norway. (Remember that Breivik guy who shot up the summer camp? He was Norwegian. In Swedish author Stieg Larssen's "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" books, there were many Swedes like Breivik. And Larssen worked against them in real life.)

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

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Ian Climacus

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quote:
Originally posted by Golden Key:
Resenting guest workers

It was (to me) a strange expectation built up by the state that the gastarbeiter (guest worker) would pack up and go home once done. But believed. And the basis of the programme.

The world is fucked. And Poland is yet another example.

These people have covered their humanity with hate. I know fear of the other has been bred in us for however many years since we came down from the trees (perhaps before), but you'd hope people wouldn't be so quick to put hate into action, and blame the other for their own problems. But I guess the primal part comes out and some people cannot, or scarily do not want to, control it.

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Golden Key
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Ian--

Ok. I'm trying to look at this from many angles. Doesn't "guest worker" imply that you're going home at some point? Or weren't the workers told that when they signed up?

Or didn't they sign up until they were in Germany?

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

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Doublethink.
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quote:
Originally posted by Golden Key:
mt--

I gather that Germany and Germans have never been particularly accepting of the Other. Resenting guest workers, resenting refugees, and then there was that whole WWII thing.

If they're simply not prepared to cope, don't want to cope, won't cope, might it be better if they just didn't let the Other in? Except maybe as tourists?

Same thing with Japan. Probably Sweden and Norway. (Remember that Breivik guy who shot up the summer camp? He was Norwegian. In Swedish author Stieg Larssen's "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" books, there were many Swedes like Breivik. And Larssen worked against them in real life.)

To be fair to Germany, a year or so ago they took in 800,000 people in 12 months - and for all that it hasn't worked perfectly it has worked. (There is an argument they owe the world 8 million or more homes anyway.)

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All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell

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Golden Key
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DT--

Yes, they took in many refugees. What I understand from the news, over the last several years, is that it hasn't worked all that well. IIRC, Germany at least talked about not accepting any more.

And there was resentment to guest workers (Turks?) long before these refugees.

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

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Ian Climacus

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GK: I'm no expert, but from what I understand:

- there originally was a 2 year stay limit; this was changed (60s?) as business preferred to keep good workers
- in the 70s there was a trend towards integration, but paradoxically it was believed they would still go home (e.g. at some point Turkish classes were even offered in schools with the view they could return to Turkey)
- trouble in Turkey led to many staying and bringing their families in
- note these guest workers were often poorly educated (and children and grandchildren continue this somewhat)
- stir xenophobia and racism in and what do you have...

Re the recent intake, from my view of course not want everything went well, but Germany did take in a lot of people in one year. If only my government was so generous.

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L'organist
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The OP asks how worried should we be? I'd say fairly but not shocked.

Poland has a long and shameful history of bigotry, prejudice and violence towards anyone who is seen as "other": at the end of WWII many ex-concentration camp returnees experienced hostility when they attempted to return to their former homes and villages but it was in Poland that there was widespread and systematic violence, with anti-jewish rioting in most large cities including Krakow, Bialystok, Szczecin and Czestochowa, and a full-scale massacre at Kielce. Poland had official anti-semitism long before the arrival of the nazis.

The far right in Poland makes a point of proclaiming its links to the RC church and its influence is spreading to other places; earlier this year Father Jacek Miedlar, a polish priest, was invited to speak at a Britain First rally in the UK.

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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lilBuddha
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The current Polish government is Right Wing and has used nationalism as a source of power. Just as Trump and the Brexiteers have. It is part of a troubling trend of playing to the worst of populism to gain/keep power. That it will bite most of them in the arse in the long run is cold comfort.

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So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Rosa Winkel

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# 11424

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A protest against Merkel a few months ago in Saxony was telling: people were saying "when are we going to be integrated?". The end of the GDR saw millions made unemployed via Treuhand, i.e. the privatisation of state industries. The concerns of those affected (effectively) by the reunification of Germany have unfortunately turned racist, seeing as the social-democrats introduced anti-unemployed legislation and contributed to austerity in Germany. With less trust for the Linke (who in Berlin as part of a coalition also carried out privatisations) the AfD were going to benefit.

Here in Poland we have a worse situation, with no effective left-wing party (I like Razem but they got about 4% in the last election) giving an alternative to austerity; in fact, it is PiS who are actually putting forward what could be loosely termed as social-democrat policies (child benefit for families with 2+ children, the aim of course being to have more white RC babies, as well as a lower retirement age) to go along with more privatisation, cuts to welfare and attacks on democracy, and support for the ONR/NOP/Młodzież Wszechpolska marches.

Here in Wrocław in 2010 NOP (a party who say that they are "worse than fascism") did a demo on November 11th, which about 650 attended, opposed by 650 of us, the mayor and the main newspaper in Poland, Gazeta Wyborcza. In 2011 Gazeta Wyborcza and the mayor didn't support the counter-demo, so there were about 200 of us opposing around 6,000 Neo-Nazis, fascists, patriots and football hooligans, who through flares and rockets at us. Since then here, as well as in Warsaw, anti-fascism has been limited to small counter-demos elsewhere, and small initiatives.

For young people, being right-wing is now trendy. Clothes to commemorate simplistic versions of the past in order to support patriotism are standard (the PW logo, the "damned soldiers" - WWII anti-communist paramilitaries who included massacres of Jews, Ukrainians and Lithuanians among their work). Like with eastern Germany, the lack of a party that gives social answers to social questions has led to people turning to the right.

To add to that, civil society is very weak here, an effect of 1945-89, though it wasn't strong before then. Many are appalled by what is happening, but there is a strong sense of resignation. My wife interviewed people involved with Solidarity and many said that people now have a lot less solidarity than in the 1980s. With no trust in the public sense, people feel helpless.

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The Disability and Jesus "Locked out for Lent" project

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
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Poland has a history which it is hard for someone from the UK to identify with. Fluid borders, not an island, with frequently hostile neighbours. From my experience there, I am sure there is plenty of straight xenophobia which many here would abhor. There is also a long history of death and oppression when neighbouring cultures interact; we may be aware here of some of what happened with Germans and Russians during WW2 - less perhaps of what happened in former Poland /Ukraine in and around 1943. With this in mind I can understand to some degree, some Poles' enthusiasm for keeping different cultures apart. Those people, with their experience, look on our experiment with multiculturalism as a disaster in the making.

(x-post with someone who knows what they are talking about - I am just a visitor...)

[ 13. November 2017, 21:10: Message edited by: mark_in_manchester ]

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(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Rosa Winkel

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quote:
Originally posted by mark_in_manchester:
experiment with multiculturalism

The anti-communist ideology is a strong component of those who attended the demo in Warsaw or the smaller ones here in Wrocław. What those who attended don't know, or pretend not to know, is that Poland owes its "Poland for the Poles" state not just to Hitler, but also Stalin, who (as well as Władysław Wolski who was head of repatriation after WWII) wanted an ethnically pure Polish state, with saw the end of the pre-war multicultural Poland which contained large proportions of Ukrainians and Belarussians. Hitler of course put paid to the other big minority.

The first post-war PM Bołesław Bierut regularly quoted the fascist Roman Dmowski, Maciej Giertrych (who was on the Advisory Council) supported Franco and martial law in Poland, the anti-semitism of Bołesław Piasecki (the founder of the fascist ONR and PAX, a RC organisation who worked with the post-war state) influenced the anti-semitic campaign of 1968. Nationalist authoritarism ruled Poland for a long time, and while work has been done to come to terms with this (such as the excellent Polin museum in Warsaw) it's very small.

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mrWaters
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It is probably also hard for most of you to imagine, just how uniform Poland is. Nowadays, it is still uncommon to see someone who isn't caucasian, even in a big city. In small towns, it is almost unheardof. Similarly, at least culturally, everyone claims to be a good, straight Catholic.

Unfortunately, right-wing political parties are actively promoting their simplified version of history. It is tragic how many young people fell into that trap.

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simontoad
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# 18096

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I'm here to defend the Germans, or some of them. When I was playing a game called Hattrick, an association football dream-team type game, I discovered an anti-nazi group and joined it. It was a bunch of Germans who were dedicated to discovering nazi and other racist symbolism used by player-run teams in the game. They knew their stuff, telling me about band names and song references that constituted badges of identity for the nazis. We found that much of the nazi stuff comes out of countries in the former Soviet Union or states under their sway during the cold war. This was not exclusive though, Scandinavian metal heads were another group that featured.

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Human

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
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Germany does not allow duel citizenship, nor is ethnicity allowed to be declared. That noted there are many immigrants. The most visible is Turkish, there may be some 3 millions. If someone speaks German and shows enculturation, application for citizenship may be made.

My cousins who live in the west, had mandatory education about the war and holocaust. It is a very sensitive subject about which there is awareness. It is not something easily talked about: the loyalty to the Hitler regime and taking part in atrocities. There are always hooligans; a main prejudice is about Osties, still 28 years after the 2 Germanies were united. The country has a very different configuration: smaller, racialism banned including Nazi symbols and holocaust denial, home schooling also banned because it has been neo-Nazis who wanted to do it. This sort of thing. Germany today isn't the same.

The suffering in Soviet times was significant in the East. There denial of Nazi and communist atrocities was routine. Like I think in the American south we see denial of the legacy of slavery and racist segregation today. The surface racism is extinguished, the latent variety is well existing.

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mark_in_manchester

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Rosa W - I think you may be the only not-right-wing Pole I have spoken with. The folks I know here also go easy on Franco (and even Pinochet); their reasoning being the memory of communism, the huge number of deportations (especially from former Poland-Ukraine) and resulting deaths, and their idea that right-wing dictators killed people in smaller numbers.

When making comparisons to Stalin, this bald logic is hard to refute. I can't push too hard with these folks - I'd break friendships. I roll my eyes at their Reagan-worship and make noises about what was happening in 1980s central America. But to them, a small number of deaths were necessary to prevent (as they see it) a very large number of deaths. And Poland has suffered a very large number of deaths.

Do you refute their view? Has their view of history been exploited for contemporary political purposes?

It's not easy to look into this from outside. We're rich, an island, and we don't have a history of Soviet communist colonialism.

quote:
saw the end of the pre-war multicultural Poland which contained large proportions of Ukrainians and Belarussians.
I imagine the moving of the Eastern border took care of a lot of that. My friends also tall me about the forced moving of Ukrainian Poles from the (new) eastern border (where there was fighting with Ukrainian partisans, supported by local Ukrainians) to the lands in the West, formerly part of Germany. Hence Orthodox churches in the West of Poland...

[ 14. November 2017, 17:13: Message edited by: mark_in_manchester ]

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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mrWaters
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quote:
Originally posted by mark_in_manchester:
I imagine the moving of the Eastern border took care of a lot of that. My friends also tall me about the forced moving of Ukrainian Poles from the (new) eastern border (where there was fighting with Ukrainian partisans, supported by local Ukrainians) to the lands in the West, formerly part of Germany. Hence Orthodox churches in the West of Poland...

Not sure where are all those Orthodox churches in the west of Poland but you are largely right. My own family was one day forced to pack in 2 hours and step on a train. Half a year later they arrived in Silesia.

Additionally, Ukrainians and Belorussians were not really assimilated into Poland during the interwar period. There was also a large Jewish population, however unfortunately vast majority of them died during the war.

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