"The camps in which millions of Jews were killed were not Polish"

The Statement by the Prime Minister of Poland, Mateusz Morawiecki, on the Crisis with Israel

Wczoraj premier Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Mateusz Morawiecki, wygłosił telewizyjną wiadomość dla Polaków na temat niedawnego kryzysu dyplomatycznego z Izraelem w związku z Holokaustem.

Yesterday, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland, Mateusz Morawiecki, addressed a televised message to the Poles about the recent diplomatic crisis with Israel in relation to the Holocaust.

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Today the YouTube channel of the Prime Minister has published the message the English language:

For your interest, I offer you the English translation of his message (you can read here the original text in Polish):

Dear compatriots, ladies and gentlemen:

Our Nation was marked by great suffering during the Second World War. The whole country was under German and Soviet occupation. Virtually all Polish families mourned the loss of their loved ones.

Poland was the first victim of the Third Reich. Death and suffering in German Nazi concentration camps were a shared experience among Jews, Poles and many other nations.

The Holocaust was an unimaginable crime. Attempts to deny it must always have an unequivocal condemnation. The Polish law has been persecuting for years people who try to deny the suffering suffered by the victims of the Nazi terror. Similar solutions operate in many other countries in Europe and the world.

The denial of the Holocaust is not limited to denying German crimes, but includes other forms of falsification of history. One of the worst forms of this lie is to diminish the responsibility of the real perpetrators and attribute this responsibility to their victims.

We want to fight against this lie, in all its forms. That is why we are amending the Law of the National Memory Institute.

The camps in which millions of Jews were killed were not Polish. This truth must be protected because it is part of the truth about the Holocaust.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Our government condemns all crimes committed on Polish soil in World War II, regardless of the nationality of the perpetrators and the nationality of the victims.

We will never limit the freedom of the debate about the Holocaust, we owe it to all those who have experienced it.

For years we have been doing a lot to be the guardian of the memory of the crimes of that totalitarian regime, both in our country and abroad.

The Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp was one of the many German concentration camps. This is another place near the Soviet Katyn, where the Polish intelligentsia was assassinated on a large scale. Jews and representatives of other nations died there.

After the war, the field was destroyed, and where the door was, the villa remained. However, thanks to Polish participation, the memory of Gusen's criminal past has been saved.

The Polish state and the Poles ensure that the German concentration camps survive as the testimony of the Martyrdom of the Nations, for the memory of those who have been killed and as a living warning.

Fighting against false claims about the participation of the Polish state in the German crime machine, Poland is on the side of truth.

Dear compatriots:

The Holocaust was also an unimaginable Polish tragedy. Among the six million Polish citizens who died during the Second World War, three million people came from the Polish Jewish community. This means that Poland, like no other European country, is obliged to protect the truth about Holocaust crimes.

Therefore we continually reminded the world of the mission of Captain Pilecki at Auschwitz, the heroism of the Żegota, the Polish organization that saved Jews, or the ruthless punishments that the Polish underground state for denouncing or assassinating Jews. The death penalty for the Poles who hid the Jews was proof that the Nazis knew that the Poles would help their Jewish brothers.

It was our compatriot, Jan Karski, who tried unsuccessfully to awaken the conscience of Western public opinion, informing him of German crimes.

We understand the emotions of Israel. We need a lot of work to make our common history, often complicated, be able to tell us together. The culture of the Polish Jews is an inseparable element of our Polish heritage.

Today, when the world is once again struggling with the problem of anti-Semitism, the Polish Government says clearly: there is no place for hatred and distortion of history.

Spreading the truth about the Holocaust is not only the task of Israel, but also the task of Poland. It is a battle for the universal truth that is a warning to the whole world.


(Photo: Flickr Kancelaria Premiera. Mateusz Morawiecki greeting survivors of the Holocaust on January 27, Commemoration Day of the Holocaust Victims)

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