Polonia Institute Open Letter to politicians, dignitaries and activists called for “help” by Polish opposition.
Honorable Gianni Buquicchio, President of the Venice Commission
Honorable Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission
Honorable Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission
Honorable Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament
Honorable Thorbjorn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe
Honorable Lamberto Zannier, Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
Honorable Vassilios Skouris, President of the European Court of Justice
Honorable Guido Raimondi, President European Court of Human Rights
Honorable Salil Shetty, Secretary General of the Amnesty International
Honorable Ruthven Gemmell, President of the Council of Bars and Law Socities of Europe
Honorable Sara Chandler, President of the FBE and Member of Human Rights & Freedom Commission
Honorable John McCain, United States Senator
Honorable Dick Durbin, United States Senator
Honorable Ben Cardin, United States Senator
On October 25, 2015 Poland held its regularly scheduled parliamentary elections. The elections were won by the Law and Justice party, running on a platform that included a wide array of structural reforms of the country’s institutions. The program was accepted by clear majority of Polish voters, and for the first time since the end of communist rule in Poland, one party was able to form a majority government.
This success in the parliamentary elections came in the aftermath of the Presidential election victory of Law and Justice, whose candidate, Andrzej Duda, won both rounds of elections held during the same year, on May10th and May 24th. Poland gave the Law and Justice party a clear mandate to govern the country and implement its platform.
But the losing side never was set on accepting the people’s decision. Even before the elections in October, a new Commissioner for Human Rights was sworn in, and new judges were named to the Constitutional Court, including 5 positions whose terms had not yet expired–a clear violation of law, with intent to appoint 14 of the 15 judges by the losing party. Additionally a new mass movement called “The Committee for the Defense of Democracy” was founded in November 2015, even before the Law and Justice party formed its government.
Here is some background. When the Soviet occupation of Poland ended in 1989, Poland was the only country in the former Communist bloc that did not hold any of its puppet rulers responsible. An infamous “thick line” policy was implemented that awarded the Communist elites safe passage into the new “free Poland” and a clean start.
The professional group that needed the most scrupulous accounting for its previous deeds was the judiciary. In 1940’s and 1950’s and then again in the 1980’s it was involved in judicial acts of terror that resulted in thousands of people executed by judicial murder, and perhaps millions being terrorized, losing their jobs and being unable to find another. But the line of judges that were brought to office by Stalinist authorities was allowed to stay, on the premise that “the group will clean up its act.” It never happened.
One method of carrying out the Communist occupation must be mentioned, as it was especially cruel: the children of the prosecuted were denied education, while the Communist elites sent their children to study at the best western universities, where they pretended to be average Poles with “ordinary Polish” attitudes mistakingly assumed there to be representative, and often forming long lasting friendships exploited until today’s times.
This is the current situation in Poland. We invite your further inquires.
One thing we must make clear. Nobody will break the Polish nation’s resolve to reform its institutions and especially the judiciary. If the Law and Justice party is prevented from carrying it out by foreign “friends” of Poland, or rather the friends of the post-communist regime, then the party that is elected next will come with an even deeper reform program, and stronger commitment. As President Trump said in Warsaw on July 6th this year: “Many tried, but the Polish nation cannot be broken.” The Fake News brought to you by Mr. Petru and Mr. Schnepf of the opposition will not distort nor subvert Polish Democracy.