You might not have heard about this; after all, it has nothing to do with Boston or John Kerry’s nomination, or his speech, or the Republican reaction. But other parts of the world do continue to have their own concerns. Believe it or not, in some cases these still involve the Second World War, for which 2004 contains the sixtieth anniversary of various of its events. In particular, Sunday was the sixtieth anniversary of the beginning of the Warsaw Uprising of 1944 against the Nazi occupation, and German Bundeskanzler Gerhard Schröder paid a visit to Warsaw to participate in the ceremonies. (more…)
As everyone knows very well, Polish membership in the EU is now a full month old. So it would seem to be an idle exercise in frustration to go back and review the various crazies who were agitating against that up till the very end: the small-time farmers afraid of being displaced in the market by Western European producers who are both more efficient and more generously supported by funds from the EU’s Common Agriculture Policy; those die-hard anti-German paranoiacs who were convinced that, right after the fireworks had died down, the descendants and representatives of those who had been driven out of what were once German but are now Polish lands would be back demanding their property back.
Except that these “crazies” won’t go away, and may even be proven right! It is support from the countryside that is the main pillar behind the surging Samoobrona, or “Self-Defense,” party headed by Andrzej Lepper, which €S covered here back during our “When Good Post-Communist Regimes Go Bad” series back in April. What’s more, it seems that the old Germans from what was once Prussia, Pomerania, Silesia, etc. are getting ready to demand their land back, a tale told in this excellent, long article on-line on the Die Zeit website. (more…)