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Production of fake narratives

Comment on the article We must support the citizens of Belarus during this brutal state crackdown by Renatas Norkus, Arkady Rzegocki, and Dr Jonathan Eyal in The Sunday Telegraph 7 February 2021.


Lech S Borkowski comment in The Sunday Telegraph 8 February 2021

Lech S Borkowski, comment in The Sunday Telegraph 8 February 2021

8 Feb 2021 12:21AM

“Just like Poland, whose solidarity movement four decades ago sparked a series of revolutions ending Soviet rule in Central and Eastern Europe and paved the way for a peaceful transition to democracy in the region at the end of the 1980s”

This is a false statement and a key element of recent mythology. The Solidarity movement was organised by the Communist regime in order to create excuse for moving to the next stage of dictatorship, dictatorship ‘below-the-line’. In this next phase, the repressive acts are more carefully hidden and masked. There is, however, a clear evidence of continued abuse, if you know where to look.

Leading members of the Polish ‘opposition’ came from within the regime itself.

The West failed disastrously to decode even the most basic elements of this comedy.

The Polish state continues to use Communist methods and violate human rights. In 2015, the state authorities issued a fake statement that my pianist wife Małgorzata Głuchowska cannot continue as a piano teacher in a state school of music and must be fired. The documents fabricated by the Regional Centre for Occupational Medicine in Zielona Góra in what is now western Poland, contain a a Soviet-style statement by a psychologist accusing my wife of unspecified delusions. These are Communist methods which the West chooses not to see and not to report. The sound recordings of two conversations with the psychologist, to which my wife was subjected under the threat of losing her job, are available on Youtube. The top Polish authorities received detailed information about our case, but chose to protect the perpetrators.

Our family is targeted because my parents were prisoners of Communist concentration camps in northern Russia and I have always supported the hard choices they made. I was expelled from the Physics Dept. of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan in 2015 after two decades of harassment, bullying, and mistreatment. I have a PhD from an American university. You can read more here: https://lsborkowski.com/pol/

Lies, falsifications, and production of fake narratives, the entire mythology of a heroic ‘opposition’ are well rehearsed in Eastern Europe. There was no transition to honesty and authenticity. People are so used to lies and falsifications in everyday life that violating the laws does not bother anyone.

Similar comedy is being played in Belarus now. Those coming on the streets in Belarus fulfil regime’s wish.

The current article is also subordinated to the Communist/Russian narrative, from which the occupation of Eastern Poland by the Soviet Union since 1939 and the subsequent genocidal treatment of the Polish population and anyone resisting Communism is absent.

Belarus known today is a Communist creation. It has nothing to do with the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The ambassadors of Lithuania and Poland commit an act of historical forgery here.

My parents lived in Eastern Poland, which was later divided into Ukrainian, Belarussian and Lithuanian Soviet ‘Republics’. They were stripped of their Polish citizenship as a result of the illegal Yalta deal, conducted behind the back of the Polish government. Unfortunately, the governments of Great Britain and United States participated in this act, against the will of the people, although they had neither the moral nor legal right to do so.

https://twitter.com/lechsborkowski

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Komsomol rock

My comments on the article Joanna Stingray, the California girl who rocked Russia and spread the word by Marc Bennetts in The Times, 1 January 2021.


Lech S Borkowski comment 1 The Times 1 January 2021
Lech S Borkowski, comment 1, The Times 1 January 2021
Lech S Borkowski comment 2 The Times 1 January 2021
Lech S Borkowski, comment 2, The Times 1 January 2021

Stingray stuffed reel-to-reel tapes and lyrics into her leather jacket and boots to evade Soviet customs guards. “I was so enchanted by the music that I was completely blind about the dangers of being caught,”

I am pretty sure she was under careful surveillance. If she managed to get tapes out of the Soviet Union, it was because she was allowed to. I am not saying she necessarily collaborated with the Soviet intelligence. Nevertheless, the Soviets must have decided it was in their interest to let the tapes out.

@LechSBorkowski

P.S. The article doesn’t dwell on such mundane bits as a permit to stay. These are the informative bits.


Grebenshchikov was a Komsomol member, the youth wing of the Communist Party. Presenting these guys as independent or contesting the system is ridiculous. Authorities had everything under control, including fabrication of fake dissidents. They played and recorded because the authorities wanted them to.

@LechSBorkowski

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Neural correlates of consciousness

My comment on Hitler and Stalin by Laurence Rees review: a tale of two tyrants by Robert Gerwarth in The Telegraph, 26 October 2020. Polish version: Neuronalne korelaty świadomości.


Lech S Borkowski comment on a book review by Robert Gerwarth in The Telegraph 26 October 2020
Lech S Borkowski, comment on “Hitler and Stalin by Laurence Rees book review” in The Telegraph, 26 October 2020

WWII and associated developments are typically viewed from mostly a military perspective. Started on [date], ended on [date]. [number] mln killed.

My family comes from eastern Poland, which suffered three occupations during WWII and afterwards: the Soviet one 1939-1941, the German 1941-1944 and again the Soviet one from 1944 on.

The war has not ended in 1945. My parents and other family members were imprisoned in concentrations camps in the Soviet Union for many years after WWII. One of my uncles was tortured to the point of not knowing his own name. He was permanently damaged. Technically alive, dead as a human being.

My mother suffered terribly as well. WWII was terrible enough, but the real hell came post-1945. The war against our family has never really ended. More recently, my wife and I were fired from our jobs in Poland in 2015, because the neural correlates of our consciousness exhibited features proscribed for elimination by the ruling class installed as a result of the Communist occupation.

Our families suffered from both Nazis and Communists. My wife’s grandfather fought against the German invasion in 1939, was later imprisoned by the Soviets in 1940-41, then fought with the Allies on the western front, and again imprisoned by the Communists when he returned to Poland in 1947.

While WWII understood as a military campaign ended in 1945, the violence associated with it continued in non-military forms against civilians. Poland understood as a civilization developed over the centuries, has been wiped out. Now the same name is being used by the Communist fake.

@LechSBorkowski

Research

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WWII history reduced to caricature

My second comment on Hitler and Stalin by Laurence Rees review by David Aaronovitch in The Times, 23 October 2020. Polish version: Druga wojna światowa zredukowana do karykatury.


Lech S Borkowski, WWII history reduced to caricature, comment The Times 26 October 2020
WWII history reduced to caricature, my comment on Hitler and Stalin by Laurence Rees book review, David Aaronovitch in The Times 26 October 2020

26 October 2020

I would like to return to the second paragraph of the review, on which I commented already earlier. The entire article is based on the concept of symmetry of the two dictatorships.

“One of the Polish cities the Soviets annexed was Lwow, which they incorporated into Ukraine.”

Ukrainian Soviet “republic”.

“As the German forces neared Lwow the local NKVD — the internal security police — massacred 4,000 political detainees in Brygidki prison. A few weeks later the occupying Germans egged on local Ukrainians to murder 4,000 Jews by way of retaliation. It was a bloody symmetry, of a kind.”

This is a misrepresentation. There is no symmetry here. Those killed by the Soviets were Polish citizens of Polish and Ukrainian ethnicity. Those killed by the Germans were also Polish citizens. Omitting their citizenship is beneficial to the Communist narrative. Soviet Union worked through their agents before WWII, such as the father of a contemporary prominent figure in the Polish media, on promoting support for the annexation of eastern Poland. The occupation by the Soviet Union of eastern Poland in 1939-1941 and again post-1944 was appropriately manipulated by Moscow. Declaring that Poland was dead, omitting the victims’ citizenship, and focusing on their ethnicity instead, while eliminating Poles from the picture, is part of that Communist narrative.

The Nazi occupiers also killed professors of the Polish universities in Lwów.

Poland was the only significant country which fought against both of these totalitarian states.

@LechSBorkowski

P.S. Note the captions under pictures of the dictators:

“Adolf Hitler always planned to attack the USSR”
“Joseph Stalin refused to listen to warnings about German aggression”

Communist caricature of WWII.

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Communist narrative of WWII in The Times

My comment on Hitler and Stalin by Laurence Rees review — bloody fantasy versus cruel rationalism, book review by David Aaronovitch in The Times, 23 October 2020. Polish version: Komunistyczna narracja drugiej wojny światowej w The Times.


Lech S Borkowski, comment on book review by David Aaronovitch in The Times 24 October 2020
Lech S Borkowski, comment on book review by David Aaronovitch in The Times 24 October 2020

This review starts with a caricature and is a bit of a caricature of history itself. It is a bad idea to use a cartoon to illustrate this subject. I understand, however, that the author is interested in conserving the narrative favorable towards the Communists. Although the cartoon uses insults about each of the leaders, it performs a very important function. It goes well with the grand Communist narrative.

A much better illustration would be the picture taken by a German soldier during the joint Communist-Nazi victory parade in Brześć nad Bugiem/Brest on the Bug river. It shows a banner praising the Red Army written in Cyrillic, two swastikas on each side above the banner, and a slightly raised sickle and hammer positioned centrally above the banner.

The picture is available in the German archives.

The author calls the Soviet leader a “defensive nationalist”. Imagine you heard this phrase out of context. Who would you have associated it with? Quite possibly you would have thought about leader of a western country.

This is another example of the Communist narrative, in which Soviet Union is to be presented as a defensive power, not the bloody genocidal regime that it was.

Also, note the language of the following fragment:

“As the German forces neared Lwow the local NKVD — the internal security police — massacred 4,000 political detainees in Brygidki prison. A few weeks later the occupying Germans egged on local Ukrainians to murder 4,000 Jews by way of retaliation. It was a bloody symmetry, of a kind.”

There was nothing “local” about NKVD. Decision to murder thousands of prisoners, citizens of Poland, was issued from Moscow. This is genocide and should be called this way. In the chaos of the first days of the German advance the Communists decided to give priority to killing the prisoners. The Soviet army retreated chaotically, abandoning equipment and arms along the way. They just could not retreat fast enough. The murder of the prisoners in eastern Poland, however, proceeded with precision and care.

@LechSBorkowski

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Communist narrative in The Sunday Times Travel section

My comment on the article Exploring Poland’s Lake District by Emma Thomson in The Sunday Times, 27 September 2020. Polish version: Narracja komunistyczna w The Sunday Times.


Lech S Borkowski comment The Times 27 September 2020
Lech S Borkowski, comment in The Times, 27 September 2020, part 1
Lech S Borkowski comment The Times 27 September 2020 part 2
Lech S Borkowski, comment in The Times, 27 September 2020, part 2

The article is representative of the Communist narrative. This is a region whose inhabitants either escaped or were expelled later in a totalitarian action. Practically the entire population of this large region was purged. The region was split by an arbitrarily drawn border and the Soviet enclave of “Kaliningrad” was installed north of it. The Koenigsberg of Immanuel Kant and several hundred years of history were annihilated.

“The capital of the region is the “garden town” of Olsztyn”

It is not a garden town. It is full of Communist blocks of flats. This was East Prussian Allenstein before WWII.

My wife’s grandmother Wera Głuchowska and her son Witold, my wife’s father, then a little boy, happened to be in Allenstein as refugees in 1945, just as WWII was coming to an end. Their home was in Iwacewicze, town in eastern Poland under Soviet occupation, presently under Belarussian control. Food was extremely scarce. Wera died of disease and exhaustion in 1945, after the war ended. She is buried in a neglected cemetery behind the church of St Joseph (current name, I am not sure of the German name). An office of the Polish Institute of National Remembrance is located just across the street from the church. The name is misleading, however. A short walk to this cemetery is enough to expose the lie. This has nothing to do with remembrance and everything with forgetting and subjugating to the official propaganda.

This cemetery bears witness to a great tragedy. Graves of little children who came to the world in the aftermath of WWII, graves of older Polish folk, who died in a foreign land instead near their farms in the fields, where they grew up and farmed. Graves of pre-WWII Prussian inhabitants, whose descendants fled, were killed, or were expelled. Most neglected, their boundaries sometimes difficult to recognize.

“The farm near Utka was bought by her great-grandparents for a small sum when the borders were redrawn after the Second World War. This previously German region became Polish, the Germans left, and residents from modern-day Lithuania moved south.”

The name of the place in Polish is Ukta, not Utka. It is quite an achievement to falsify so much history in two sentences. “Borders were redrawn”? By whom? Who did that? Why? No mention of an illegal Yalta agreement to which, sadly, the British government were part.

The phrase “bought by her great-grandparents” is meant to suggest a legal transaction as well as create an air of a long Polish history of the place. The sentence “This previously German region became Polish, the Germans left, and residents from modern-day Lithuania moved south” is a classic example of a totalitarian story-telling. The tragedy of the people is presented like a simple house sale. It was anything but.

This is the Communist narrative subordinated to the Soviet/Russian narrative.

The phrase “residents from modern-day Lithuania moved south” is simply a lie. I am a son of those “residents”. They were indeed residents, but not of Lithuania. Post-WWII, they resided in Communist concentration camps in northern Russia, Arkhangelsk region, for quite a long time. They were lucky to get out alive. Before that, they were citizens of Poland. They were stripped of their Polish citizenship by the Soviet occupiers. Both of my parents lived in eastern Poland, now marked as part of Belarus.

I was born in Kętrzyn/Rastenburg and grew up among refugee families from eastern Poland. We had a very small flat in former German barracks. Among our neighbours was a quiet German-East Prussian family. They may have been evicted from their house or farm. They left for Germany in the 1970s. Two of my childhood friends also moved to Germany during that time. They had a Polish father and a German mother.

As time went by, I gradually realised the enormity of the tragedy of all the people in that war.

And what are we served by The Times? No mention of vandalised country houses, ruined farms. It is all sweet and beautiful. “Bought for a small sum”. Really? This area is not my place and not my heritage.

@LechSBorkowski

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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.


Lech S Borkowski comment The Times  12 September 2020
Lech S Borkowski, comment in The Times 12 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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Politruk’s speech

My comment on Michael Binyon’s Belarus has gone its own way without the fires of nationalist rage in The Times, 22 August 2020.


The author writes about his visit to Belarus in 1967. I was denied permission to see my relatives in 1984. The author was clearly acceptable to the Communist authorities. I was not.

This non-article is like politruk’s speech. Politruk is a Communist political officer whose main job is to talk, to talk and talk, without saying anything. This is talking as an exercise of power, preventing anything substantive to be expressed by anyone.

The text conforms to the general rules of Communist writing. It is more important what has not been written, rather than what has. It is more important who and what was eliminated from the narrative.

Belarus has not gone ‘its own way’. Belarus is a Communist country. The article’s title clearly follows the Communist narrative, in which Communism is presented as a solution to nationalist tensions. In a similar sense each totalitarianism can be presented as a solution to democratic disputes and differences of opinion.

You can write a similar article praising e.g. Chinese policies of suppressing the Uighur identity.

My Polish grandparents’ house stood on their farm near the current Lithuanian-Belarussian border. It was within borders of pre-WWII Poland. The farm was confiscated by the Soviets and almost entire family was sent to different Communist concentration camps.

The author writes ‘booming tractor and ball-bearings factories’. The Communist authorities refused to connect my relatives’ house to the electric grid. It is a shame The Times prints Communist lies.

@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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Another obituary of Sergei Khrushchev

Another Sergei Khrushchev obituary. The Times, July 1, 2020. I posted nearly identical comment as under his obituary in The Telegraph. I added the first sentence

Sergei Khrushchev clearly continued to serve Soviet Russia during his years in the US.

I also posted another comment in response to a reader’s remark.


Someone in a comment below suggested that Solzhenitsyn should be in every western high school syllabus. No, he shouldn’t be. He was iconized undeservedly. There are reasons to doubt his whole legend.

You should read “Alexander Dolgun’s Story. An American in the Gulag” by Alexander Dolgun (1975), written by an American Embassy employee kidnapped from the street in Moscow by the Soviet secret service. Interestingly, Solzhenitsyn appears at the end of the book. Khrushchev’s name appears in the book as well.

The prosecutor who signed the fake accusations against Dolgun was Roman Rudenko, head of the Soviet delegation at the Nuremberg trials.

@LechSBorkowski

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