Comment on the article ‘Plunder,’ a Gripping Reflection on What the Nazis Took and What It Would Mean to Take It Back, review of Menachem Kaiser’s book.
Dwight Garner in The New York Times, March 8, 2021.
I hope Kaiser recovers his family property. I am very familiar with ‘Kafkaesque hurdles’ in Poland. You need to understand the presence of the red elephant in the room. My wife and I extensively dealt in recent years with state administration, law, legal issues, prosecution office, and through correspondence, with top state officials. The Kafkaesque process is symptomatic of fundamental, deeper issues. This is not anomaly. This is actually modus operandi of the state that does not want to follow its own laws.
In other words, the legal processes and enforcement of the law have been taken outside the law. The law functions only as a theoretical concept. There is theory and there is experiment. Experimental data do not agree with theory.
We have spoken to many lawyers. I would not describe any of them as a ‘normal lawyer’. Kaiser’s difficulties are neither weird nor accidental. They are systemic.
In many ways, WWII hasn’t ended in 1945. I am currently paying mortgage on an apartment in Zielona Góra (German Gruenberg). My presence there is an indirect consequence of WWII. My parents lived in eastern Poland before WWII. They were both prisoners of Communist concentration camps in northern Russia after WWII. Their family properties are located within current Belarussian borders. Their farms were seized by the Soviet authorities during their post-1945 occupation of the area.
Whichever way you look, WWII does not want to go away.