“… to see those on the other side burn”

Warszawskie getto

I have no idea what will come out of the latest dispute over the Institute of National Remembrance – whether it is going to quiet down eventually, grow even more heated, or maybe continue until the so-called “good change” finally goes away.

But I have no doubt whatsoever that what will remain in the Polish-Jewish relations, what will cast a long shadow over this and the next generation, is the sadistic glee of many Polish right-wing activists (including politicians of the ruling party and journalists that support it), who have just discovered how ghettos operated and learned about the existence of the Judenrats.

The pugnacious cackle of those who retweet the Hannah Arendt quote with an air of satisfaction, who share – without any trace of remorse – Nazi propaganda films featuring ghetto policemen beating their fellow prisoners, the jokers sneering at people who faced imminent death, lectures preached by fat know-it-alls, who know better how people should have behaved in the ghetto and camp, how they should have opposed the Nazis – all that is going to remain for a long time.

When it comes to despicability, you are a good match for those who stood by the wall on the Aryan side in April 1943, happy to see those on the other side burn.

Piotr Paziński