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Friday, September 23, 2016

Open letter to the Polish journalists Association, concerning Anne Aplebaum’s piece in The Washington Post

The following letter written by Bronisław Wildstein was found on the pages of Radio Poland:

“Since the Law and Justice (PiS) party came to power in Poland, and even before, Washington Post’s Anne Applebaum, the wife of [former Polish Foreign Minister] Radosław Sikorski, is manipulating the facts and even lying, promoting black propaganda against the government of Poland.
I have already pointed out, that the toleration by this supposedly serious daily of a biased journalist, who purports to be an expert on Polish reality without informing [readers] about – her personal involvement in the events she is describing – is a violation of the standards, which the daily claims to honour. Lately, however, Applebaum went a step further.
Her lies, with no basis in reality, about general Błasik, who was allegedly present in the Tupolev’s cockpit, urging the pilot to land saying: “Be bold, you’ll make it”, should be remembered in the annals of history as ruthless political propaganda. It is an example that in the 21st century, in the US – a country which prides itself in its democratic traditions – one is free to use [Reich Minister Joseph] Goebbels-like methods in a political fight, publishing the most explicit and disgusting lies in a paper, which declares itself a defender of public morality.
This lie is also slander towards the people who died in the catastrophe, accusing them of causing it, putting all the blame on them.
Another explicit lie – although one of a lower-rank – is the insinuation, that the “Smoleńsk” feature film was created on government orders. It was in fact produced against the will of the then government, and pressure from the most influential communities in the country.
Suing Applebaum in the US court of law would be costly and burdensome. The families which she lied about, probably have no possibility to do so. The Polish Journalists Association, of which I am a member, should however react, and present an official protest against such explicit lies, and demand it be published in the The Washington Post.”

Link to piece by Anne Aplebaum