Skip to comments.Poland: This Time, The President Should Apologize
Posted on 05/30/2012 6:51:41 PM PDT by Bill Russell
Picture a scenario, where members of your family helped a new neighbor establish a household. Just after helping that neighbor, your family experienced a long illness which caused your entire family to be quarantined and your home foreclosed upon. Then, after several years, you were finally able to return home, plant a garden, and rebuild your familys life. Just as your household was beginning to prosper again, a heavily armed neighbor named John Wayne Gacy took over your front yard. Instead of using his own house and its crawl space to commit his horrific crimes, he used your yard and included some of your family among his victims. Then, as you risked life and limb to tell all of your neighbors about the terrible crimes Gacy was committing in your front yard, your other neighbor, named Ted Bundy, took over your back yard and your house. Mr Bundy then grabbed the best educated of your family, took them to his yard, and killed them.
While members of your family helped other, long established neighbors keep Mr Gacy out of their yards, Mr Gacy decided he wanted the rest of your house and some of Mr Bundys yard. Soon everyone was fighting with Mr Gacy. Finally, the new neighbor, whose family has grown rich and large, joined the fight against Mr Gacy. In doing so, the new neighbor made a deal with Mr Bundy to help win the fight. The new neighbor and Mr Bundy agreed that your back yard would belong to Mr Bundy, and that Mr Bundy would exercise control over your household decisions after the demise of Mr Gacy. For many years, Mr Bundy insisted on taking all the credit for getting rid of Mr Gacy, and acted insulted if anyone remembered the sacrifices of your family. But finally, years later, the new neighbors and others finally got around to paying tribute to the brave members of your household who were instrumental in telling the neighborhood about the terrible crimes of Mr Gacy. But in delivering the honors to your family members who fought so bravely against the evils of the Gacy crimes, the new neighbor attributed the evil of those crimes to YOUR familys name.
Few people reading this metaphor would imagine such a wild scenario involving some of historys most notorious serial murders could happen in real life. The sad thing is, it is based on the real world experience of Americas most loyal ally, Poland.
Shortly after Generals Tadeusz Kosciuszko and Kazimierz Pulaski fought so valiantly under George Washington in Americas War of Independence, their own home country of Poland was erased from the map and partitioned between Austria, Prussia, and Russia. It was 125 years before the Polish nation was re-established by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. On September 1, 1939 Germany invaded Poland from the west. On September 17, 1939 Russia invaded Poland from the east. Hitler and his SS (Gacy) immediately began establishing the NAZI death camp system, including the notorious Auschwitz. Stalin and his NKVD/KGB/FSB (Bundy) systematically arrested and deported nearly 26,000 military officers, policemen, and cadets and murdered them at a place called Katyn, near Smolensk, Russia. The Russians also arrested hundreds of thousands of Polish teachers, intellectuals, civic leaders and students and sent them to the gulags in Siberia, with the intent of working and starving them to death.
Contrary to popular characterizations, the Nazis did not enjoy a cakewalk into Poland. The fledgling Polish Army and Air Force inflicted over 60,000 casualties on the Germans during the initial invasion. Poland never surrendered during the Nazi occupation and the Polish Home Army maintained an active resistance throughout the war; there was no Vichy Poland. The Polish pilots who escaped to England formed the two highest scoring squadrons of the Royal Air Force during the Battle of Britain. The Polish underground smuggled the German secret code machine ENIGMA to the Allies.
When Stalin decided to use the Poles he was starving in his Gulags to fight against the Nazis, they revolted as soon as they were armed. They marched out of Russia, and across Iran and Iraq to fight under British command in Jordan. They formed the Polish II Corps and later routed the Nazis from the mountain top of Monte Casino in Italy.
America entered the war in Europe in 1941. True to the form of the new neighbor in our metaphor, Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the Yalta Agreement with the affable Uncle Joe Stalin. This deal gave nearly half of Polands territory to the Soviet Union and doomed two more generations of Poles to Soviet oppression.
Finally, our metaphor culminates in the incompetence of President Obama in delivering the Medal of Freedom honors to Jan Karski, one of the many brave Poles who risked death by torture to tell the world of the Holocaust. In doing so, Mr Obama referred to the Nazi death camps as POLISH death camps.
There are those who will argue that it was just a slip of the tongue and the Poles are just being too sensitive. However, this is not the first time Mr Obama has directly insulted Poland and its brave people. It was less than three years ago that Obama announced his agreement with Mr Putin to cancel the missile defense shield in Poland, on September 17, 2009: the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland in World War II.
I am no fan of Mr Obamas foreign policy by apology. I believe that his penchant for apologizing to Americas adversaries, when no apology was warranted, has denigrated Americas image on the world stage and has made Mr Obama appear weak and unwise. But Poland has been a true and faithful ally to the United States and has stood by us in Iraq and Afghanistan. Mr Obama has directly insulted them in a way which strikes at the very core of the Polish psyche. Poland deserves an apology from the President. Unfortunately, Mr Obama has weakened himself so much that he cannot do anything that will open him to more criticisms of weakness in this election season, especially after the way Putin has given him such a thorough diplomatic smack-down in just the last two weeks. In the short term, all Poles can do is to hope Americans will work towards electing a President this November who can distinguish between friends and adversaries. Then, maybe, we can get back to being a good neighbor.
William T Russell is a former Republican Congressional Candidate in the 12th Congressional District of Pennsylvania. He is an internationally published columnist and has been a featured guest on a number of national television and radio news shows. He is a retired Lieutenant Colonel from the US Army and has served in Desert Storm, the Iraq War, and the Balkans. His wife, Katarzyna (Kasia) Russell, is the granddaughter of a Polish survivor of Stalins gulag, and the daughter of a regional leader of Solidarity in Poland. Both Bill and Kasia were in the Pentagon on 9/11. Email him at Bill_Russell@hotmail.com.
Obama should have stuck with , “ Punches above their weight “ LOL
Well stated, thank you sir. I think it is important to note and emphasize that what the media calls a “verbal slip”, was no verbal slip but part of the text published by the White House and read by Obama off a teleprompter. It was a deliberate distortion, such as the same one committed several years ago and repeatedly by the New York Times and the newspapers parroting its line, which caused an international scandal which any half awake American, and certainly those in Washington, should have been aware of.
And when the International Red Cross investigated the Katyn Forest murders of the Polish Officer Corps, FDR Joined with his buddy Stalin and lied through his teeth saying it was the Germans. Even Churchill would not speak the truth tho he was much more reluctant to deny the Russians were the murderers.
I learned some things reading this, tho.
Obama will never apologize to an ally, only to an enemy.
This is should make getting his grades a must
Bill, I am honored to be published alongside you. Your work is quite good. I aspire to this level of writing skill. Please go see my works on this subforum and offer creative criticism or whatever you wish to note. :)
No, Poland should apologize for not understanding the statement./sarc.
Those simpletons in Poland just don’t get Obama’s nuance.
Well yeah. They’re just pollacks. A bit miffed at his glossing over how a large number of them were murdered, claiming they did it themselves. Gee. What’s the big whoop? We get to reelect a black guy and make us some more history!
Those dumb crackers need to get over themselves.
His history is that he will never apologize for anything that he has done or said, but he will be quick to 'apologize' for America for any, and all, things that were not done on his watch.
The opposite of the characteristics that one would desire in a leader.
On behalf of my fellow Americans, I apologize to the Polish people that we currently have an imbecilic jerk acting as the current POTUS.
I hate our culture of getting bent out of shape over everything anyone says.
That said, Obama is an idiot. He even makes Clinton’s foreign policy record look good.
BH Obama, Nobel Peace Prize recipient. Top 10 that’s one of the most absurd things that as ever happened. That would be like giving George Lucas an Oscar for directing the last Star Wars prequel.
“That would be like giving George Lucas an Oscar for directing the last Star Wars prequel.”
I should have added, BEFORE he even directed it. Since Obama was given the award after being Prez for 5 minutes, before he could even F anything up.
Bump to the top of the list. :)
“That said, Obama is an idiot.”
You ain’t kiddin’!
“BH Obama, Nobel Peace Prize recipient. Top 10 thats one of the most absurd things that as ever happened.”
It was a big “F*CK YOU” to GWB.