Don’t miss the 5000-word research from Haaretz (the Times of Israel runs a 600-word summary) exposing that a group of dedicated Polish Wikipedia contributors erected and maintained for 15 years until now, a fictional WW II Nazi extermination camp for Poles in the middle of Warsaw. The hoax also lives outside of virtual reality with real commemorative meetings (and tears?). Let’s ask have several questions about that.
First, how can one be pleased with good results if one knows they are based on falsehood?
You get a good mark for your exam but you cheated. Well, you needed the mark but it won’t give much internal pride. But feeling good about oneself was not the goal here.
You try to trick someone into believing in your religion. Why would you want someone to believe in falsehood? Well, you probably reason that an important part of your religion is true and that the end (getting him to join) justifies the means. And you must be not so honest.
You falsely claim that you were no perpetrator or co-conspirator, and not even an innocent bystander, but actually a prime victim. How can that take away your guilty conscience? Well, you probably deny any guilt anyway and this way you can get, in the war for sympathy, some satisfaction in defeating the real victims whom you hate. Winning from people you abhor doesn’t need to come through a just fight.
Another question to ask is, is this a isolated case? No, it isn’t.
Many Japanese pretend to be WW II victims like the Jews. At the end of WW II, two of their main cities were flattened with nuclear bombs (what we would since call a crime against humanity) but all through the first half of the 20th Century, Japanese soldiers were more vicious aggressors than the Nazis. They were the villains now playing the victim.
Some Germans also tried to sell themselves as victims of WW II, Hitler, the Nazis. Problem is that Germany as a whole, enthusiastically embraced the Third Reich. Sure, after the war, Germany laid in ruins. Millions of Germans had died. But it was clear for all to see that it had been the aggressor and a monstrous one at that, not just concerning their sustained hatred for Jews.
(Most Germans may have been unaware of the death camps and the official extermination program, but Hitler incessantly talked about killing them all to enthusiastic crowds and there was no revolt against the burning of the synagogues throughout the land, to name a few points.)
Also Poland lost a lot to the Nazi invaders. Millions died. Much of its art and landmarks had been purposefully destroyed. The Nazis considered the Poles and their cultural heritage as ‘racially’ inferior. But there was no program to exterminate them and most Poles stood by in silence while Europe’s Jews were exterminated in their midst. Something that couldn’t have been done in the Netherlands — from where the Jews were railed to Poland for a good (but evil) reason.
NB: Modern Germany shows that as a People it has repented. There is still a large group of German Nazi sympathizers and Jew-haters but the State and the people fight them beautifully. If I had to live outside of Israel, Heaven forbid, Germany would be at the top of my wish list.
Also the Christian world has to a certain extent admitted to have been on the wrong side of history for millennia. They have not yet as far advanced as Germans but there is a beginning to be appreciated.
Germany and Christians not only show that repentance is possible. Their atonement is also an indictment to the Japanese, the Poles and many Muslim countries. Why haven’t they begun doing the same yet?
My final question. What does this Polish fable tell us about reality?
That Poland harbors a sizable group of Poles who hate truth and Jews and that the Polish Nation as a whole does a bad job fighting them.