Is poland a'beispiel fur die demokratie auf der ganzen welt'?

The US President’s concern about the development of Poland at the press conference with the Polish President Duda was not heard on state television. Picture: US Embassy Warsaw

The Polish Broadcasting Council KRRiT has filed a lawsuit against the news program "Wiadomosci" of the state broadcaster TVP for the distortion of the U.S. President’s remarks

There was a distortion of the words of US President Barack Obama, which is a kind of lie, said the chairman of the council Jan Dworak.

The American president scolded the Polish government on Friday at the NATO summit for interfering with the interception court – but in Warsaw they don’t want to admit it. "Obama declared that Poland was still a beacon of democracy, there was no criticism of the Polish government," said Polish Minister of State Witold Waszczykowski on the radio on Monday.

"I have expressed to President (Andrzej) Duda our concern about certain events and the impasse around the Polish Constitutional Court", according to Barack Obama on Friday.

But the viewers of the Polish state TVP were not informed about this sentence. In addition, one sentence was mistranslated . This is how the audience hoards: "Poland is and will be an example for democracy all over the world", while Obama said more admonitively: "Poland is an example and should remain an example of democratic procedures that exist all over the world." Barack Obama’s speech was translated into Polish by the U.S. Embassy on Monday to make it accessible without filters to Poles whose English is not good enough.

Dworak mentioned in an interview that even the communist leadership in Poland in 1977 did not dare to change the words of American President Jimmy Carter at a press conference in Warsaw in any way. The government, which has ruled alone since November "Law and justice" (PiS) has effectively paralyzed the Constitutional Court with amendments to the law, which now has hardly any possibility to reject controversial laws of the government under Prime Minister Beata Szydlo. Since January, the EU Commission has therefore been conducting a rule-of-law procedure against Poland.

However, Poland does not want to mess directly with the U.S., which in the future will send troops to Poland’s eastern borders on behalf of NATO in order to deter Russia. Beata Szydlo therefore avoided a discussion about Obama’s speech: "Poles don’t pay me to interpret, they pay me to govern", declared the Minister President.

Party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the actual ruler on the Vistula, saw only praise in Obama’s words and warned that now "pitiful political forces" agitated against the government. In Poland, the accusation of the "Treason" and the "Nestbeschmutzung" quickly brought out by voices close to the government.

Gregorz Schetyna, the head of the former ruling party "Burger platform" , therefore carefully affirmed that Obama’s criticism did not give his party any satisfaction. Newsweek’s Tomasz Lis speaks out more sharply, speaking of disinformation on the part of the state broadcaster, which has been run by a former PiS politician since the beginning of the year.

It is also significant that on the occasion of the NATO summit on Friday and Saturday, an exhibition on Poland’s path to the Atlantic Alliance only featured people who were sympathetic to the PiS. Leading politicians, such as the then President Aleksander Kwasniewski and the former politician Bronislaw Geremek, were not mentioned because they come from other political camps. "A mess", Katarzyna Kolenda-Zalewska, a journalist for the liberal TVN channel, called it an outrage.

The Party "Law and Justice" won the elections in October – and thus apparently also the sovereign right over the reality in the country. At the same time, Jaroslaw Kaczynski is convinced that the media world abroad is determined by a few influential people. He believes that the negative coverage of the Washington Post by columnist Anne Applebaum was directed by her husband, former Polish minister Radek Sikorski. Kaczynski himself stated in an interview that they would now hire a good PR agency, which now had to better represent Poland’s government policy in the world.

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