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Vatican in the Shadow of the Red Star

My comment on the article Pope Francis ‘naive’ in deal with China to name bishops by Tom Kington and Didi Tang in The Times, 19 September 2020.


This is nothing new in the Vatican. Earlier popes appeased Communists in Eastern Europe in a similar way. It was done under the banner of ‘normalization’. It is worth reading “Memoirs” of Jozsef Mindszenty, the Hungarian cardinal who never bowed to the Communists. He described how the Communist regime was taking over the control over the Catholic Church in Hungary after WWII. Something very similar was done in other Communist countries.

Mindszenty was eventually stripped of his cardinal dignity for his resistance to Communist rule by pope Paul VI himself. Shocking and disgusting, if you ask me. Cardinal Casaroli was then making rounds between Rome and Communist capitals in Eastern Europe and making deals with them, sealing the Communist control of the church affairs.

The election of Karol Wojtyła from Poland as pope John Paul II in 1978 extended direct Communist control to the Vatican. Wojtyła was not opposing Communists. He was working with them and for them. Otherwise he would be eliminated early on.

Later, the legend of Wojtyła’s opposition to Communism was fabricated. Utter nonsense. John Paul II celebrated the 26th anniversary of his pontificate with a Red Army Choir’s concert in the Paul VI auditorium in the Vatican on October 15, 2004. The last song performed that evening was “Oka”, the anthem of the Communist First Division formed in the Soviet Union in 1943. The concert was broadcast on tv to Italy and Russia. BBC and some other media reported on the concert, but nobody expressed any surprise or feelings of unease over the concert. The “Oka” song was not mentioned publicly as well. The Italian announcer introduced it simply as a ‘Polish song’.

The subsequent turbo-propelled extra quick canonization of John Paul II is not a result of divine interventions. It was his Communist comrades who did the job. A posthumous life achievement award for his services.

Polish émigré writer Józef Mackiewicz wrote a book entitled “Vatican Under the Shadow of the Red Star”, Watykan w Cieniu Czerwonej Gwiazdy, in the 1970s. I don’t think there is an English translation of it though.

@LechSBorkowski

  • József Cardinal Mindszenty, Memoirs, New York: Macmillan (1974)
  • Józef Mackiewicz, Watykan w Cieniu Czerwonej Gwiazdy.
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Contempt for victims

My comment on the article My great aunt, the spy Ursula Kuczynski by Rosa Ellis in The Times, 11 September 2020.


Here are my reflections.

We are served a story of a family of intellectuals who worked for the genocidal Communist regime and who don’t care about responsibility for their actions. It seems they are very happy with what they did.

Victims of Communism are simply eliminated from the narrative. I read this as an expression of contempt for the victims.

I also have a family and three generations of my family suffered terribly under the Communist terror.

More recently, my pianist wife and I, a physics PhD, were fired from state institutions in Poland. The authorities ran an extremely vicious campaign against us. They employed typical Communist methods. Do our lives matter?

Also, I would like to correct the view expressed in some earlier comments that the Soviet Union was a British ally during part of WWII. That’s not true.

It is true that the British government and the British people viewed the Soviet Union as an ally, but this view was based on deception and self-deception. Soviet Union never ceased to be the enemy of western democracies.

@LechSBorkowski

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Self-limiting journalism

My comment on the article Belarus rebels must act while Putin wavers by Roger Boyes in The Times, 26 August 2020.


Mr. Boyes represents self-limiting journalism.

Roger Boyes refers to Solidarity in Poland and calls it a ‘self-limiting’ revolution. This concept is a Communist lie. Communists themselves created fake opposition to their own regime. The key ‘opposition’ figures came from the regime’s core.

One of them, Adam Michnik, is a son of the Soviet agent convicted for acting against the Polish state in the 1930s. None of the western journalists dared to point this out. Key figure in the media.

Tadeusz Mazowiecki, a Catholic activist, who was called ‘the first non-Communist Prime Minister’ in 1989-90. He was a three-time member of the Communist ‘parliament’, each time ‘elected’ with more than 95 per cent of the vote. Much better result than Lukashenko.

When the Red Army Choir gave a concert in the Vatican during the celebration of the 26th anniversary of John Paul II’s pontificate on 15 October 2004, nobody in the media asked any questions or expressed surprise. The last song performed encore that evening was “Oka”, the anthem of the Polish First Communist Division formed in the Soviet Union in 1943. There was not a single mention of it in the media.

The ‘free’ trade unions in Poland was a Bolshevik trick and was done on order from the Communist authorities. It was merely a re-run of the old Lenin’s concept. And, yes, it has been done in the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk out of respect for Lenin. Such is the gullibility of western journalists, that they will do everything to avoid noticing the lie.

There was not and there is no solidarity in Poland. Solidarity was a lie. My wife and I were liquidated from out state jobs in a perfectly Communist way in 2015. In September 2011, they first launched an incredibly vicious campaign against us at the State School of Music in Zielona Góra, where my wife Małgorzata Głuchowska worked, and Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, where I was employed as an associate professor of physics.

We didn’t back down. We recorded numerous violations of law and human rights. State documents were falsified, including student exam certificates, which we pointed out. We provided the top state authorities, the media, MPs, with detailed information. There was not a single helping hand. Neither from people around us, nor from the state structures or media. We have talked to numerous lawyers. There was not a single lawyer, that would agree to sensibly represent us, despite piles of evidence.

The state authorities forced my wife to see a state-appointed psychologist under the threat of her being fired. She didn’t have much choice. She went to chat with a psychologist, recording the two 40-minutes meaningless conversations. These recordings are now on YouTube. The prosecuting authority falsified the juridical process, when they received information and evidence from us. The falsification was of the most blatant type. Only someone guaranteed full impunity could do this.

Our evidence is also available on our website, some at the ResearchGate portal.

Our family was targeted because my parents opposed Communists and were imprisoned for many years in Communist concentration camps in norther Russia after WWII. I supported my parents’ choices. I was not politically active and I simply wanted to work as a scientist. I have a PhD from the University of Florida, a university much higher classified in world rankings than any of the Polish schools.

Poland is the same dictatorship as before 1990, only it is better camouflaged now. Political pluralism is fake in Poland. This camouflage suffices for journalists such as Boyes. They won’t ask questions, they won’t investigate, even if you provide them with piles of evidence.

@LechSBorkowski

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Red Army Street

I recorded this ride on the Red Army Street, ulica Armii Czerwonej, in Krosno Odrzańskie, Crossen and der Oder, on 2 May 2016.

Isn’t this interesting and important that Communist street names have been left unchanged in this town? Their presence contradicts the official narrative about the collapse of Communism. The names were changed in 2016-17.

For more than twenty five years after 1990 nobody bothered to implement the change. In Kołobrzeg/Kolberg on the Baltic coast, there was a street named after a Communist assassin Kniewski. It did not bother anyone either.

These street names were finally removed, when these Communist sentiments were too obviously exposed. The removal was not dictated, however, by a public outrage, but by a pragmatic desire to mask the lie about the collapse of Communism.

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Forty years and hundreds of protests later

My comment on the editorial article Is this the end for Europe’s last dictator? in The Telegraph, 11 August 2020.


Lech Borkowski
11 Aug 2020 4:38PM

We have been here before. Poland, for example, has seen hundreds of protests and hundreds of strikes. As a first-year student, I participated in a two-week student sit-in in Toruń, protesting about undemocratic methods of the Communist regime.

Forty years on, it is clear that the protests, strikes, and demonstrations in Poland in 1980-81 have been engineered by the Communists themselves, who have not lost control even for a minute.

When my wife and I tried to use rights, democratic and legal tools theoretically available to us in recent years, it turned out that they are nonexistent in the same way as forty years earlier.

I don’t see how Belarus would somehow turn out differently. The Communist deception runs very deep.

@LechSBorkowski

Research

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On the mechanics and engineering of Communist academic management

On 25 September 1963, the Polish Communist daily Trybuna Ludu printed the list of about fifty newly nominated university professors. The decision was signed by members of the State Council, with this collective body playing the role similar to that of the president of the state.

Trybuna Ludu 25 września 1963, mianowani przez Radę Państwa na profesorów
Trybuna Ludu 25 September 1963, the list of persons nominated to professorship

The nominees have been promoted from an appropriately lower rank of the academic hierarchy, with one exception.

mgr inż. Teobald Olejnik nominacja na profesora, Trybuna Ludu, 25 września 1963
mgr inż. Teobald Olejnik awarded the title of associated professor; Trybuna Ludu, 25 września 1963

Teobald Olejnik of the Technical University of Poznań carrying the title of magister inżynier, mgr inż., or something like an MSc Eng, has been promoted to profesor nadzwyczajny, which can be translated roughly as an associate professor. The surprising bit is the promotion from a non-PhD degree directly into a state professorship, skipping the intermediate stages.

This extremely privileged treatment by the Communist authorities must have been a reward for a particularly loyal and valuable service performed by Mr. Olejnik. I tried to find some information on the individual. He was born in 1906 and died in 1990. He was 57 at the time of his nomination. And still no PhD?

A one-page document from the Department of Engineering and Management dated 2015, sheds some light.

One of the departments created at that time was the Department of Economics and Industrial Enterprises Planning, initiated by Prof. Teobald Olejnik, who also headed the Institute of Organisation and Management, established in 1970.

In Communist-speak, “initiated by” does not have the usual meaning. It means rather that the person was the designated initiator.

We learn from a short biographical note that Teobald Olejnik received an honorary doctorate from the Poznań University of Technology. He was also described as a “social activist”, which can be read as a somewhat veiled reference to his serving the Communist dictatorship. We can also see that immediately following his professorial nomination, he held the post of a deputy rector from 1963 until 1972. Again, this type of professorial just-in-time nomination, is a clear mark of Communist privilege.

The 2015 biographical note does not address doubts about Olejnik’s Communist turbo-nomination and an apparent lack of a PhD. A casual reader would not realize the extent of the dictatorial mechanics and engineering behind the man’s career and academic honors.

A search of the Scopus database does not reveal any of his publications.

 

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The Trabant of a mass

My comment on LGBT protest upstages Duda’s swearing-in as Polish president by Oliver Moody in The Times, 6 August 2020.


My report from Poland on that day would be completely different.

I would first note that the day before, on August 5, the Polsat News tv channel broadcast an advertisement for a model kit of the Trabant, the car of the East German Communist regime. I posted a copy of the ad on my Tweeter feed. You can buy your child a little toy symbolic of the totalitarian regime to play with. This is nothing unusual in Poland, as you might notice at gas stations, at other shops, or at the Warsaw airport, where you can buy models of other Communist cars as well. This link with the Communist past is not accidental. It signifies a real and present continuation of Communism, which is carefully masked by a pseudo-democratic spectacle.

The Trabant model kit advertised on Polish Polsat News tv channel, 5 August 2020
The Trabant model kit advertised on Polish Polsat News tv channel, 5 August 2020

The next day, on August 6, the same Polsat News channel, along with other stations, broadcast live the entire holy mass at noon, celebrating the inauguration of Duda’s second term in office. Religious ceremonies have been integrated into the state choreography over the past thirty years in a way similar to post-1990 Russia. As a tool of the state, a way to conquer history and ideas.

Polsat News, Warsaw, Poland, 6 August 2020. Live broadcast of the Catholic mass on the day of the presidential inauguration
Polsat News, Warsaw, Poland, 6 August 2020. Live broadcast of the Catholic mass on the day of the presidential inauguration

The holy mass seemed as real as the Trabant kit.

The cultural conflict referred to in the article is non-existent. It would exist naturally in normal circumstances as a lesser issue but here it is being artificially whipped up and played as a provocation, as a decoy. Political technologists in Poland are veterans of deception and production of a fake narrative. They are veterans of provocation. They know how to bait western media, who will jump at every opportunity to reinforce their own prejudice. Prejudice, however, is not a good cognitive guide.

"Welcome to the Party" poster at the Auchan supermarket in Zielona Góra, Poland; Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro; 12 March 2015
“Welcome to the Party” poster at the Auchan supermarket in Zielona Góra, Poland; Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro; 12 March 2015

Popularization of the Trabant kit is not an isolated incident. Not long ago, you could buy the “Welcome to the party” poster with Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Mao and Castro drawn as party guests having fun. A local restaurant presented pictures of Lenin, Stalin, and the post-WWII Polish Communist leader Bierut in a painted decoration of its windows. There was no problem, although there is a law forbidding to glorify and propagate totalitarianism and its symbols.

Zielona Góra in Poland, Krawiecka Street, Restaurant front. 21 December 2015
Zielona Góra in Poland, Krawiecka Street, Restaurant front. 21 December 2015
Communist leaders Lenin, Stalin, and Bierut pictured in the restaurant windows. Zielona Góra, Poland, Krawiecka Street, 21 December 2015
Communist leaders Lenin, Stalin, and Bierut pictured in the restaurant windows. Zielona Góra, Poland, Krawiecka Street, 21 December 2015

The falsification of state documents, including school and university certificates, is a fact. This is not even hidden. This is the way it was before 1990. It remained this way. There was no rush to truth and authenticity. The new ruling class is the same as the old ruling class.

So, whether it is Duda in the office or non-Duda, it does not matter. Also, the constitution has a similar importance as before 1990, i.e. none. It never mattered since 1944.

@LechSBorkowski

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Moscow’s unlikely admirer

My comment on the article The Pope is Beijing’s unlikely admirer by Dominic Lawson in The Sunday Times, 26 July 2020.


4 August 2020

I would like to take issue with a couple of items in this article.

the pre-eminent Catholic commentator George Weigel

On May 14, 2020 The Wall Street Journal published a false story by George Weigel. In the article Pope John Paul II’s Soviet Spy, he claimed that Irina Ilovayskaya Alberti, a widow of an Italian diplomat, was his agent in the 1980s Soviet Union.

Weigel does not provide the basis of his revelation. This pre-eminent commentator participates in fabricating a fantasy. Irina Alberti, who had an unrestricted access to JPII, was able to travel to the Soviet Union several times a year and meet with the so-called ‘dissidents’. If anything, this indicates the Soviets’ approval of her persona and her contacts with the pope. In summer 1984, when I applied for a permit to visit my relatives living in eastern Poland occupied by the Soviet Union since 1944, the Soviets refused. I was neither a pope’s acquaintance, nor a political or social activist.

Back to the current article:

This is part of the Holy See’s long campaign to achieve full mutual diplomatic relations with Beijing, which Vatican diplomats imagine will give them leverage with a leading world power. But it was a concession Francis’s predecessors would not have made — especially not the fiercely anti-communist John Paul II.

The legend of JPII being ‘fiercely anti-communist’ does not survive closer scrutiny. In fact, the opposite is true. JPII closely collaborated with the Communist authorities and was strongly supported by them. He was employed continuously at the Catholic University in Lublin from 1954 to 1978, when he was elected pope. His employment at the Catholic University occurred at the time when the authorities reduced the number of faculties from five to two.

Also, JPII was not keen to pray for the souls of Polish officers murdered by the Soviet NKVD in Katyn and other sites in 1940.

JPII celebrated the 26th anniversary of his pontificate in the Vatican on 15 October 2004 with a special performance of the Red Army Choir, also known as the Alexandrov Ensemble. The concert was broadcast to both Italy and Russia. The last song performed that evening as an encore was “Oka”, the anthem of the Polish Communist Army formed in the Soviet Union in 1943. This army was the main force behind the dictatorship in Poland. You can view the concert’s video on Youtube. This was both the celebration of Karol Wojtyla’s highly successful service as well as an admission of his subordination to Moscow, although western media correspondents failed to grasp the spectacle’s message.

The turbo-charged process of JPII’s canonization a mere few years after his death in 2005 is also very telling. It was not the divine hand that steered the process of making him saint. The devil’s advocate must have been asleep at the wheel as well.

Finally, let me quote from the closing paragraph of the article The Catholic Church in Communist Poland by Elizabeth Valkenier in The Review of Politics, Vol. 18, No. 3, 305-326 (July 1956):

This self-assumed task of convincing Catholics both inside and outside Poland that the Church’s mission is quite compatible with socialism, as well as the care taken not to break with the Holy See, seems to indicate that the pro-regime Catholics have a much more ambitious aim than the establishment of a national church. Their hope seems to be to have Catholicism serve not only the Polish regime but also world revolution.

@LechSBorkowski

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The Times presents GDR Communist Party member as victim

My comment on Heart of darkness: classified tapes offer a glimpse into inner workings of the Stasi by Oliver Moody and Sabine Schu in The Times, 15 July 2020.


So the woman on tape was an East German Communist Party member and she was teaching the Freie Deutsche Jugend, the youth wing of the SED, Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands, i.e. the party she was member of?

Being in that position she did not have to be recruited to inform. She had a highly ideological and important position. Informing was part and parcel of her social position and party membership. The description in the article does not strike as particularly realistic.

There is also a reference to Poland. In Poland, the Communists organised fake opposition groups. Some members of these fake opposition groups were members of elite Communist families and otherwise well privileged people.

You need to take a broader view and examine other evidence. Polish transformation of 1989-90 was fake.

@LechSBorkowski


The second short remark is a response to another reader’s comment, who wrote:

“However I did visit the museum of ‘The Russo-German War 1941-45″ on Unter den Linden and was surprised by the absence of Soviet propaganda. The portrayal of events, at least to my Western eyes, were accurate.”

“The portrayal of events […] was accurate”.

I am sorry, but your eyes are not the right benchmark, especially if you accept the museum’s exhibition title as adequate description of WWII.

There was nothing in the museum about imprisoning, deporting and killing Polish citizens under the Soviet occupation? About the killing of Polish resistance members?

@LechSBorkowski

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Reports of demise through incompetence are exaggerated

My comment on Bumbling Stasi agents made up reports and put lovers on payroll by Oliver Chu, Sabine Schu in The Times, 11 July 2020.


Reports of demise through incompetence are exaggerated. Stasi papers as reputable source?. You need more than that to make a case.

There is plenty of evidence that the ‘collapse of Communism’ was staged.

@LechSBorkowski


Where do we start? Maybe like this:

“Communist MP with 98.92 percent of the vote becomes the first non-Communist PM of Poland”.

@LechSBorkowski


“One young agent, codenamed Erich, told trainees in 1985 how he had been tasked with infiltrating groups of students in Berlin and Leipzig and monitoring them for signs of “state-destructive activities”. He felt intellectually out of his depth but his handlers went to great lengths to make him seem “interesting” to his classmates, even discussing whether to insert a subversive chapter into his thesis in order to attract attention.”

This does not ring true. I have also been a student during 1980, although in Poland, and have not seen any state-destructive activities. I studied at three different universities in three cities. There were plenty of eyes everywhere and to suggest that there was difficulty in obtaining information about people and their activities is laughable. Communists eliminated private life.

First you need to know that Communists did all they could to eliminate from universities people hostile to the dictatorship. This applies to both staff and potential students. Preferential treatment was given to children of the Communist class, policemen, the army people, etc.

The point of the story seems to stimulate the idea that there were secret groups plotting the overthrow of Communism.

Those pockets of ‘resistance’ were likely to have been organized by the Stasi, just like the entire Solidarity movement was manufactured in Poland by the Communists. The leading roles in the ‘opposition to Communism’ were played by the Communists themselves. Adam Michnik, celebrated in western universities, is a son of a Soviet agent, who was imprisoned in the 1930s for his activities against the Polish state. Tadeusz Mazowiecki, Catholic obediently serving the Communist state, was a three-time member of the Communist ‘Parliament’, each time ‘elected’ with more than 95 percent of the votes. He was hailed as Poland’s first non-Communist Prime Minister after WWII, which is complete nonsense. Hanna Suchocka, another PM in the 1990s, was also a member of the Communist Parliament.

“the Stasi was fretting about pockets of pro-democratic resistance that would ultimately bring down the Berlin Wall in 1989.”

This is disinformation.

@LechSBorkowski


These tapes are not a reflection of reality. They may have been fabricated with the intention to deceive. The intention to depict the Communist apparatus as powerless is a long-standing decption. Stalin, when asked by the Polish general Sikorski about the whereabouts of thousands of Polish officers missing in 1941, replied he didn’t know. They have been murdered by their Communist forces in 1940.

The same tricks are being used today in Poland, the country of evolved Communism. The same Communist apparatus in disguise is running the state and pretends to be powerless when it suits them.

@LechsBorkowski

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