The August Trials: The Holocaust and Postwar Justice in Poland
Andrew Kornbluth is at it again. The book title refers to the Decree of August 31st, 1944, in which newly-Communist Poland held more than 32,000 trials for war crimes and for those that had collaborated with the Nazis. Most of these “August trials” or “August cases” took place before 1956. (p. 7).
WERE THE TRIALS OBJECTIVE? HAVING IT BOTH WAYS
Author Andrew Kornbluth (p. 132, 274, 301) claims to have found no evidence of “politically-motivated prosecutions” in Lublin and Krakow. He even cites a case, from the Lublin Appellate Court, in which an NSZ defendant got a lighter sentence (pp. 250-251), and, from this, concludes that pro-Communist courts “displayed no special partisanship”. On what planet is Kornbluth walking on?
In any case, it appears that Kornbluth wants to have it both ways: To him, the trials were objective insofar as they were not influenced by Communism, but were simultaneously not objective because they indicted “few” Jew killers. As will soon become obvious, Kornbluth is quite a storyteller.
JEWS DON’T ALWAYS GET THEIR WAY, SO THEY BAD-MOUTH THE COURTS
Time and time again (e. g, p. 135, 161-162, 304), Andrew Kornbluth laments the fact that significantly fewer Polish Jew-killers were convicted than Poles that had collaborated with the Nazis against other Poles. The author opines that sentences for acts against Jews were generally lenient. (p. 200). Finally, Kornbluth jumps to the conclusion that Poland’s postwar Communist government did not care about Polish crimes against Jews. (p. 8). He presents not a shred of evidence to support his bold claim.
Could the disparity in convictions and sentences simply be because many Jewish accusations were dubious? In addition, this is a question of the glass being half-full or half-empty. Kornbluth admits that, “…it is likely that several dozen Poles were executed for denouncing, capturing, and killing their Jewish neighbors during the war. Thousands more had their lives disrupted by arrest, trial, and prison terms up to ten years.” (p. 274).
While admittedly several dozen Poles were executed for killing Jews, NOT A SINGLE JEW WAS EVER EXECUTED FOR MURDERING A POLE! So what is Kornbluth whining about?
RUNNING AWAY FROM THE TRUTH ABOUT POLISH ACTS AGAINST JEWS
The author cites the following work by Domanski:
Here is how Kornbluth characterizes Domanski, “But its main purpose is to repeat the key element of the myth of the war–that insofar as crimes against Jews are concerned, Poles had no agency whatsoever. The author describes the Polish countryside as being under ‘total German occupation’ and the representatives of the village administration–the headmen, watchmen, firemen, and others–as being utterly captive to German orders. The Blue Police [POLICJA GRANATOWA], too, were either helpless pawns or treated Poles as badly as they did Jews. The Jews themselves engaged in crimes ranging from theft to denunciation. German policemen and informers lurked everywhere, enforcing total compliance with Nazi regulations.” (p. 272).
Andrew Kornbluth is beside himself! He cannot escape his blame-Poles-at-all-costs mentality. He cannot even imagine that there could be another explanation for the usual Jew-killing accusations made against Poles. Then again, it seems as though Jews in general have a very hard time internalizing the implications of the Nazi German terror directed at Poles. Kornbluth never lived through the Nazi German occupation of Poland, so he is hardly in a position to moralize and point fingers at Polish conduct.
FALSE ACCUSATIONS AGAINST POLES
Kornbluth brings up the case of the Hryciow (Hryc) brothers, accused of killing Jews. (p. 246). He complains about the judge not believing the Jewish accusers. In actuality, the accusations were a total farce. See:
MOVING THE GOALPOSTS TO KEEP BLAMING THE POLES. GERMAN GUILT DILUTION
Most Jews that accuse Poles are oblivious to the German orders governing Poles and Jews. Kornbluth is not, but the facts do not matter to him. He gets a little creative in his Polonophobia as he writes, “Firemen and others who found themselves on the dock could always point in their defense to the standing orders of the Germans for all Jews to be arrested. But the high degree of initiative required to ferret out Jews in hiding, especially when no Germans were present, the robbery that invariably preceded death, and the implacability of the perpetrators all suggest that the exterminationist rationale of the occupiers had been internalized.” (p. 54). Wow! Kornbluth must be omniscient. As if only Jews were robbed, and as if he psychically “saw” every single Jew being robbed before being killed. And who can even measure, let alone do an objective rating of, “degree of initiative” or “implacability”? So what makes Kornbluth imagine that he is free to insinuate that the Poles had adopted the “exterminationist rationale” of the Germans? Clearly Kornbluth is mistaking his editorializing and Judeocentric armchair moralizing for scholarship–all in order to effectively equate Poles with Nazi Germans. Then again, he is far from the first Jew to try to do so. Lo and Behold! Once again, Poles find themselves on the same side as the Nazis.
POLE-AGAINST-POLE ACTIONS VS POLE-AGAINST-JEW ACTIONS: DISHONEST COMPARISONS
But wait, it gets even better. Kornbluth’s boundless imagination continues to amaze. He tells us that Pole-on-Pole crimes were generally done by people in desperate straits, while those against Jews were not. (p. 18). On what basis does Kornbluth pretend to know this? His omniscience must extend to mind-reading! Who is he to say that a Polish szmalcownik that blackmailed a fugitive Jew, for example, did not so out of a desperate need of money? Or that a Pole who bought post-Jewish property, at a German-sponsored auction, did not do so in order to alleviate his crushing poverty? Kornbluth refuses to see this: He has drifted into an “only Jews were really victims” mindset.
Andrew Kornbluth makes the following disingenuous comparison, “Moreover, whereas Polish-on-Polish crime was generally atomized and furtive, Polish-on-Jewish crime, especially in the countryside, was a solidarizing and highly visible effort in which numerous locals and sometimes entire communities took coordinated part in full view of their neighbors.” (p. 18, see also p. 39 and p. 77; Emphasis is Kornbluths). This laughable comparison completely ignores the reality of German policies. For instance, thanks to the German death penalty that sometimes wiped out entire villages in reprisal for a single act of aid to a Jew, villagers had to band together to decide whether or not to find and kill a Jew that one of the villagers had been suspecting of hiding. Some solidarizing event! It also ignores Jewish conduct. For instance, when bands of Jewish bandits preyed on Polish villagers, it behooved the villagers to engage in the “solidarizing event” of forming a posse for self-defense.
DID SO FEW POLES ACTUALLY DIE BECAUSE OF POLISH COLLABORATORS?
Finally, Kornbluth’s Judeocentric concept of collaboration shows up, once again, as he devalues Poles killed by other Poles. He comments, “Moreover, outright murder was strikingly rare in Polish-on-Polish crime.” (p. 18). Oh, really? Has he ever heard of the multitudes of Polish Underground members murdered by the Germans as a result of information provided by Polish collaborators?
THE FACTS BE DAMNED: POLES ARE INEVITABLY “COMPLICIT IN THE HOLOCAUST” NO MATTER WHAT: RUNNING HISTORY BACKWARDS
The following statements of Kornbluth are priceless, “Neither when acting against Poles nor when acting against Jews did local offenders give any sign of desiring a German victory or a prolonging of the occupation. While a contemporary audience can agree that the Holocaust was a key German war aim and that any contribution to it, no matter the perpetrator’s intent, was necessarily an act of collaboration, it is highly doubtful whether any of the perpetrators of the anti-Jewish crimes considered themselves to be collaborators.” (p. 19). (Emphasis added). So history now runs backward, and Poles are slandered no matter the facts. That is exactly how the Holocaust supremacists want it.
SINGING THE PRAISES OF GROSS, GRABOWSKI, AND ENGELKING
Andrew Kornbluth repeats the claims of Jan T. Gross, Jan Grabowski, Barbara Engelking, Alina Skibina, and Dariusz Libionka without as much as a glimmer of questioning. He praises the totally-debunked DALEJ JEST NOC. (p. 272). With the exception of Domanski, quoted above, Kornbluth completely ignores the Polish scholarship that has demolished the credibility of the likes of DALEJ JEST NOC.
GRABOWSKI’S VOODOO NUMBERS YET AGAIN
One gets an idea about the quality of Kornbluth’s research by his repetition of Grabowski’s totally made-up number of 160,000 to 250,000 fugitive Jews. (p. 14). Then Kornbluth backtracks a bit, now saying that “tens of thousands” of fugitive Jews were killed by Poles. (p. 16). A slight difference.
To pile-on the anti-Polish innuendo, Kornbluth only cites regional studies that estimate a <15% survivorship of fugitive Jews in German-occupied Poland. (p. 16). He conveniently ignores other regional studies that support a much higher 33%–50% Jewish survivorship rate. For examples, see:
STANDARD UNTRUTHS ABOUT THE POLISH ANTI-DEFAMATION LAW
In common with many Jewish authors, Andrew Kornbluth is exorcized about Poland standing up for herself and criminalizing the mendacious attempts to shift the blame for the Holocaust from Nazi Germany onto Poland. He repeats the lies about this law being one that prevents Poland from being criticized, and one that (horror of horrors) inhibits academic freedom. (p. 1, 3). There is the standard whine about Poland’s heroic narrative. (e. g, p. 269).
In raising the stink, Kornbluth conveniently forgets that the Polish Anti-Defamation Law was modeled on the pre-existing Jewish-sponsored laws that criminalize Holocaust denial in many nations. One could just as easily conclude that the laws against Holocaust denial are less about preventing masses of people from potentially questioning the 6 million figure (a negligible risk), as they are about endowing the Jews’ Holocaust with an aura of importance and untouchability.
TROTTING OUT ALL THE OLD CHESTNUTS AGAINST POLES
Andrew Kornbluth casts all the standard aspersions against Poland’s prewar government, and engages in the usual Zydokomuna denialism. We even hear that Dmowski was a “virulent racist”. (p. 12). [Since use of this label is so popular nowadays, why not?] The author then takes the usual dump on the Catholic Church. (e. g, p. 290). Kornbluth repeats the complaint, for the umpteenth time, of Cardinal August Hlond’s 1936 “Jews are freethinkers” statement (p. 13), while of course avoiding the fact that many prewar Polish Jews had in fact turned to atheism.
The schlocky quality of Kornbluth’s scholarship also shows up in his dusting off of hoary, long discredited arguments. There is the old saw about Armia Krajowa (Home Army) Commander Grot “Rowecki” and his (long-misquoted) “Poles are antisemites” statement (p. 44), and the equally-irresponsible accusation of subsequent A. K. Commander “Bor” Komorowski giving a veiled order to kill fugitive Jews. (p. 72). For refutation, see:
PLAYING THE TWO-FACED JUDEOCENTRIC GAME
Andrew Kornbluth praises the IPN insofar as it once agreed with the Jewish side on the Jedwabne affair, but now impugns the IPN for being “politicized” because it no longer toes the Jewish line. (p. 270). He expresses a feigned puzzlement over negative Polish reactions to Jewish restitution claims (p. 270, 273), as if the Holocaust Industry and its extortionist program did not exist. It is par for the game.