Fake Hungarian dissident

My comment to the obituary of Laszlo Rajk junior in The Telegraph, Laszlo Rajk, Hungarian architect, set designer and dissident whose father had been a prominent victim of the Stalin-era show trials – obituary, 26 November 2019.

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Lech Borkowski 5 Dec 2019 9:27AM
Ridiculous. Rajk senior was a criminal. Period.

Rajk junior led a privileged life. Fake dissident. Published books by T. G. Ash, a great friend of Communists and of an evolving Communism? Timothy Garton Ash is basically an agent of disinformation.

Children of top Communists playing the role of dissidents? Ha ha.

This obituary is indicative of a complete cognitive catastrophe. This is part of a wider approach to the subject of the Communist regimes of Eastern Europe, in which the real victims of Communism are eliminated, with children of top Communists presented as dissidents.

Communism has not collapsed. The most advanced form of dictatorship in history was reformed but not overturned.

Communist organisation of the state is alive and well. My wife Małgorzata Głuchowska, a pianist and piano teacher, was expelled from her job at the State School of Music in Zielona Góra (Państwowa Szkoła Muzyczna w Zielonej Górze, Poland, for political reasons in 2015. The authorities used the Occupational Medical Service to issue a fake medical statement prohibiting her from working in the school, the job she performed so successfully for twenty years. Same as in the Soviet Union.

I was similarly expelled from the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań in 2015 for political reasons as well, where I was an Associate Professor of Physics. I was the only faculty member with a western PhD (University of Florida 1995).

My parents were prisoners of Communist concentration camps in the area of Arkhangelsk in northern Russia after WWII. My father deserted from the Communist army under Soviet control on 13 January 1945.

Our family has been targeted and harassed for many years. Changes of government had no effect. Our daughter was targeted in her elementary school as well, in an action parallel to those carried out in our workplaces.

@LechSBorkowski

https://lsborkowski.com/pol/

Communist methods in Poland

From my two comments folowing the article Nato should de-escalate conflict with Russia and focus on inequality, says Jeremy Corbyn, by Tony Diver.


Lech Borkowski 2 Dec 2019 7:50AM

First you have to understand the situation and that implies understanding the post-WWII developments. Western leaders Churchill and Roosevelt signed the Yalta pact with Stalin. It was no better later on.

The West is completely and absolutely clueless as to what has happened and what is happening in Eastern Europe. Communist party members were welcomed as democrats post-1990. One of those sits in the office of the German Chancellor. I don’t think you would like to give any significant function to a Nazi, former or not. So why different and privileged treatment of the Communist totalitarians?

My wife and I were both expelled from our state jobs in Poland in 2015, school of music and university, respectively, for political reasons, for standing up for truth, law, common sense, and human dignity. In case of my wife a fake psychologist statement was fabricated to provide the excuse for her dismissal. The best pianist and piano teacher in Zielona Góra in western Poland has been fired by a typical Communist method. Same as in the Soviet Union. I was the only professor of Physics with a western PhD at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan. See here https://lsborkowski.com/pol/. Poland is run by the Communists who only pretend to be democrats.

The ‘transition to democracy’ and rule of law in 1989 was a fake one. Now Communist countries of Eastern Europe can control and subvert NATO as its members from the inside. NATO? Clueless, clueless, clueless.

@LechSBorkowski


Lech Borkowski 2 Dec 2019 8:04AM

[… ] I have just told you totalitarian methods have been and are in continued use in Poland. […]  You didn’t even ask for more information. The tv news you get or newspaper articles don’t tell you the ugly stuff. The campaign against us has been going for decades. Decades. Not one government. Many governments.

[…] I am afraid you don’t what to understand. All this juggling of labels of who is right wing or left wing in Eastern Europe is nonsense. The policy on the ground is the same totalitarian policy no matter what label is attached to the government in Poland.

John Paul II approved elimination of Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty

Another comment following Niall Ferguson’s article in The Sunday Times.

One reader asked me,

Ulysses9:

Interesting and challenging views in your comment. Do you have a reference or evidence for the Pope refusing to pray for the Polish victims of NKVD massacres?

My response:

If I remember correctly, the information about the reluctance of John Paul II to pray for the murdered by the NKVD, appeared in the closing chapter of “The Triumph of Provocation” by Józef Mackiewicz (1902-1985). The book appeared in Polish in 1962. In 1982 Mackiewicz wrote one more chapter dealing with the then-recent events in Poland. Cardinal Wojtyła was elected pope in 1978.

Since I don’t have the book with me, I can’t give you a precise quote. Józef Mackiewicz was very critical of the Vatican’s raprochement with the Communist regimes under Pope John XXIII and Pope Paul VI.

The Vatican envoy who negotiated church’s concessions with the Communist regimes in the 1960s and 1970s, Cardinal Agostino Casaroli, was elevated to the position of the Vatican’s Secretary of State by Pope John Paul II. This decision implies John Paul’s approval for the Vatican’s earlier policy towards Communists, in which Casaroli played a key role, as well as approval of the degradation of the Hungarian anti-Communist Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty, in which Casaroli again must have played a key role. As I wrote in an earlier comment, Pope Paul VI stripped Mindszenty of his title of Cardinal. Absolutely abominable decision which was the result of a long process. John Paul II must have approved and applauded.

The English edition of The Triumph of Provocation was published by the Yale University Press in 2009. It is interesting that the book was not translated for 47 years. When it appeared finally in English, the editors tried to alter the book’s message by adding a misleading commentary.

Magical thinking about the church and the Communists

My second comment on Niall Ferguson’s article Aftermath: the fall of the Berlin Wall — and its lesson for China 30 years on in The Sunday Times.


Pope John Paul II, whom the author mentions, did not oppose Communists. He collaborated with them. He celebrated the 26 anniversary of his pontificate in October 2004 with the special performance of the Red Army Choir, known otherwise as the Alexandrov Ensemble. The concert took place in the Pope Paul VI Auditorium and was broadcast on tv to both Italy and Russia. The last song performed that evening was “Oka”, the anthem of the Polish Communist Army formed in the Soviet Union in 1943. You can view the video of it on Youtube. This army was later the backbone of the Communist dictatorship in Poland.

The key figure in the Catholic church who staunchly opposed Communism was Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty, the Hungarian Primate, imprisoned by the Hungarian Communists from 1948 to 1956. From 1956 to 1971 he was a special guest of the American Embassy in Budapest, where he was granted asylum. Pope Paul VI stripped Mindszenty of his church titles, including the title of the cardinal, in 1973. The Vatican basically wanted Mindszenty to stop speaking against Communism and resign voluntarily. I recommend reading Mindszenty’s “Memoirs” published in 1974.

In Poland, just like in Hungary and other Communist countries, the church was firmly under the regime’s control. It benefited Communists to present the church hierarchy as a collection of independent figures opposed to the dictatorship. There was simply no way they would allow the advance of an anti-Communist on the ladder of the church hierarchy.

Pope John Paul II refused to pray for the thousands of Polish officers murdered by the Soviet NKVD in 1940.

So, instead of a thoughtful analysis, we have a mindless repetition of a fairy tale about the fall of Communism and Pope John Paul II alleged magical role in it.

The fall of the Berlin Wall plays a role analogous to that of a pretty lady accompanying an illusionist. Communism has not fallen and there is plenty of evidence that it didn’t.

@LechSBorkowski

Don’t ask, don’t tell. Communism and The Sunday Times

My comment on Niall Ferguson’s article Aftermath: the fall of the Berlin Wall — and its lesson for China 30 years on in The Sunday  Times, 3 November 2019.


“With a few proletarian exceptions — Lech Wałesa is the most obvious”

Wałęsa is a Communist stooge. The whole Solidarity movement was engineered by the Communists themselves. The leading so-called ‘dissidents’ came from the Communist inner circles.

One of those ‘dissidents’ is Adam Michnik, whose name is missing from the article. He is the son of a convicted Soviet agent, Ozjasz Szechter, who apparently was the First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Western Ukraine. He acted on Soviet Union’s behalf against the Polish state and was convicted in the 1930s.

Why omit this name from the article? Michnik was and remains key figure in Polish public life.

“the dissidents who led what Timothy Garton Ash called “the Refolution”, a mix of reform and revolution, were bourgeois intellectuals: Vaclav Havel in Czechoslovakia, for example, or Bronislaw Geremek in Poland.”

Timothy Garton Ash failed to even register a surprise, let alone ask questions about the mechanics of the ‘opposition’ to Communism.

Bronisław Geremek was a Communist party member.

I suggest the motto for the The Times: Don’t ask, don’t tell.

Communism beyond the Berlin Wall

My comment on the article Thirty years ago, I watched the Berlin Wall come down by Anne McElvoy in The Times.


The text is chaotic. It is raising questions and doubts rather than bringing answers. More noise than signal.

Egon Krenz’s son among friends? That’s interesting.

“Many of my friends hailed from families who were part of the nomenklatura, the bureaucratic establishment.”

In other words, you were surrounded by the young members of the Communist dictatorship’s inner circle.

“More overtly dissident friends lived in a niche society mixing with each other, passing Samizdat books around […]”

Would the author explain, please, whether and how did the group of “dissident friends” differ from the circle of dictatorship’s young members?

At the end of the article the author writes “Next week I will go back to Berlin and catch up with the old friends and the old stories. And as an honorary Ossi […]”

Catching up with Egon Krenz’s son and the like? What does the phrase “honorary Ossi” mean? Does it refer to both the guards of the Concentration Camp East Germany and the prisoners alike? The same word for both the perpetrators and the victims?

Note that Communists’ victims are eliminated from this narrative.

Now, let us do a little Gedankenexperiment. Imagine an analogous text about the Nazi regime. Replace names of the Communist officials with the Nazi ones. Substitute friendship with young people from the Communist inner circle for friendship with the young from the Nazi core. Eliminate victims of Nazism from the story about Nazism. How would you react to such article?

In sum, this narrative is not reliable.

In November 1989, I was a doctoral student at the University of Florida in the US. Having returned to Poland in 1995, I gradually learned that the Communist system of repression remained in place. I was refused participation in a Polish-American scientific conference in the field of my PhD studies. No explanation was given. I was constantly harassed and acutely discriminated in my university job. Later, when I openly demanded that my rights, declared theoretically in the constitution, be respected, I was expelled from the university. The year was 2015. I come from a family persecuted under Communism. My wife was also dismissed from her job for political reasons in 2015. Typical Communist methods were used against her as well.

There is much more to Communism than the Berlin Wall.

Look who is not speaking

Comment on The Times article ‘East was best — and then the Soviets sold us out,’ says East Germany’s last leader by Peter Conradi.


The subject of the ‘fall of Communism’ is misunderstood and mis-narrated, to put it mildly. You should look at it critically and ask lots of questions.

Notice the absence of stories about Communism’s victims. Instead you get stories about those replaced in 1989-90 who ran the criminal state. Then, with the partial exception of East Germany, it becomes a narrative about an internal power struggle among the Communists themselves.

Communism, as implemented in Eastern Europe, is the most advanced form of dictatorship ever implemented. Note the present tense in the preceding sentence. Has it really collapsed like a house of cards, undone by internal dissenters originating from the core of the Communist regime?

I come from a Polish family persecuted by the Communists and I can firmly say that the Communism has not fallen. The people, the organisation, the methods are all in place and functioning. The symbolic layer has been repainted, though not entirely. The simplistic announcements that Communism has fallen, if anything, indicate a failure of an intellectual enterprise.

@LechSBorkowski

All the fairy tales that are fit to print

My comment on Roger Boyes’ article Don’t be surprised at Poles returning home in The Times, 15 October 2019.


Being The Times’ correspondent in Warsaw in the 1980s, Roger Boyes failed to ask critical questions and notice some of the most obvious things. And now he continues to build on those mistakes.

Let me remind him and others in the media that both Kaczynski and Orban come from families privileged under Communism. Kaczynski’s father was a Communist party member. His mother had a job at the Institute of Literary Studies in Warsaw, which was reserved for the most trusted and privileged few. In their early years, Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his twin brother Lech played in a film for children. This is a firm stamp of approval for the reliability and trustworthiness of the Kaczynski family in the eyes of the Communist dictatorship. The Kaczynski brothers were later trained by the Communists for their political roles in the fake opposition to Communism.

Roger Boyes was reporting from the 1980s Warsaw that the Solidarity movement was an authentic one and and opposed to Communism. It wasn’t on both counts.

Fast forward to 2019 and Boyes writes “Leaders like Kaczynski (who actually pulls the strings from the back benches)”. I am sorry, but this is not true. This is a fake story. A former Communist apprentice, who would be fully emancipated now into running the show of his own? That’s a real joke.

All the fairy tales that are fit to print.

Communist capitalists

On 9 October 2019, The Times published the article Putin’s enemy Mikhail Khodorkovsky on Citizen K, the film that tells his story. Here are my comments posted on the newspaper’s website.

Comment 2 is a response to another reader’s post, who argued that

1. careers in politics or economy were reserved for the Communist party members.

2. “after the regime change the people who were best placed to become political and business leaders were the ones who had worked their way up under the old system.” This was argued to be entirely logical. Some dissidents have also made good careers but there enough of them to replace the incumbents.

3. The same thing happened in Germany after WWII, where only the top Nazis were purged.


Comment 1

Isn’t it funny that throughout entire Communist block the best way to achieve capitalist and/or political success is to be a Communist or come from Communist circles?

Khodorkovsky’s story is not credible.

Knowing how stories are fabricated in Poland, for example, where Communists where presented as liberals, enlightened democrats and pro-capitalist, I would remain highly skeptical of the article’s subject.

Comment 2

Paragraph 1. You suggest a surprisingly limited scope of control exercised by the Communist dictatorship. Only two areas of activity are mentioned, politics and economy. What about the judiciary, the military, lawlessness enforcement (not to be confused with the law enforcement in a normal country), education, science, etc.? Was there an area of activity remaining outside a strict control?

There was not.

Also religion was no exception.

Paragraph 2. “So of course after the regime change …”. What regime change? You mean the new guys, who are the same as the old guys? There was no regime change. Change was superficial and involved mostly the stage props. The control remained in the same hands.

The “leading dissidents” were performing the roles assigned to them by the Communists. In Poland the entire Solidarity movement of the 1970s and 1980s was created by the Communists themselves. The dissidents were fake.

The future “capitalist reformer”, “author of the big-bang transition to capitalism” was an earlier member of the Communist party and a former employee of the Institute of the Fundamental Problems of Marxism and Leninism in Warsaw.

I remember how some years ago the Polish Minister of Internal Affairs at the time and a former Communist Party member explained that those working in the Communist secret services where natural partners of western businesses, because of their knowledge and qualifications.

You write “it is entirely logical”. Whose logic do you follow?

The last sentence of Paragraph 2 contradicts the first one.

There was no regime change. The regime hasn’t changed not only at the top, but in the middle and in the lower layers of the hierarchy as well. In other words, the Communist system of the selection of the cadres remained firmly in place. These cadres remained fully operational in the same sense as before 1990. They are fully operational today. I happen to know this first-hand.

Paragraph 3. “The same thing happened in Germany after the war.” No, it has not. Germany after WWII and the Communist countries post-1990 are two different things.

@LechSBorkowski

Trust 2019

My comment to The Times article Anti-Putin protesters jailed for six years, 7 October 2019.

——

These protests seem to be mostly meaningless. Fake opposition is the most basic thing in Russia and other East European countries.

The same story is being repeated over and over again. Like a well known fairy tale children keep listening to, the West listens to, reads and watches tales of ‘protests’ and ‘opposition’. And Russia obligingly supplies these stories. But are there any true stories here?

One ought to remember what Operation Trust was in the 1920s Soviet Union and how it was replicated in countless variations over the years. The political and social situation in Eastern really is fundamentally different from the West. Think of China, a Communist country with a capitalist makeup. There are ways to camouflage the political life and stage it theatrically. After all, the whole Communist politics was a theatrical play.

So, has a magical return to authenticity in public life in Russia and other East European countries occured or not? It has not.

Take the example of Poland. The Communist regime in Poland created fake opposition movements in the 1970s and 1980s, complete with street protests and prison sentences, and staged a fake collapse in 1989. The first ‘non-communist’ prime minister, Tadeusz Mazowiecki for example, was a three-time deputy to the Communist parliament, each time elected with 96-99 percent of the ‘vote’. There is a long list of post-1990 leaders whom graduated from the same political school but pretended to represented change. The Communists were leading ‘transition to capitalism’ themselves. The Communist party headquarters were even converted to a stock exchange to symbolize the change.

Today’s ‘nationalist’ political leaders in Poland and Hungary are Communist-trained functionaries.

@LechSBorkowski

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