February 14, 2008

Weak Polish Excuses For Failing to Return Property

I have left recent postings on this site by someone who argues that Poles need not return Jewish Property. Some of his arguments include:
1. Jews worked for the Communists that oppressed Poles after the War.
2. Jews abandoned their property.
3. Poles also lost property.
My response to these shallow arguments is that such excuses are specious. At best they constitute ignorance to sound reasoning or they a revival of polish antisemitism. I shall give the writer the benefit of the doubt and assume that he is not thinking straight. I shall try to help him by responding to his three main points.
Here is my response to number one. Perhaps some Jews worked for the communists after World War II. Whether that is true or not is irrelevant. Most Jews fled from Poland because Poles continued to attack and kill Jews after the War. Some Jews took the side of the communists because the communists were oppressing the Jews less than the Poles. Whatever the reason, such an excuse does not give Poles the right to steal people’s property. It is like saying that it is ok to shoplift at WallMart because they do not fairly compete with local stores. One thing does not have anything to do with the other. Likewise if some Jews were communists in Poland and oppressed Poles, that has nothing to do with stealing the property of Jews.
My response to number two is as follows. Some Jews abandoned their property because they were murdered by the Nazis. Some Jews abandoned their property because they were attacked and killed by Poles after the War. I can assure the writer that not one Jew abandoned his property with the intention of giving it to the Pole that presently occupies his property. So taking someone property because they fled is not logical. A just society, viewing the injustices of the past, should welcome the opportunity to return property to their rightful owners.
My response to number three is as follows. Poles should also get back any property illegally taken from them. That is just and fair. But to use that as an excuse to not return Jewish property is like saying two wrongs make a right.
The bottom line is that the Poles must return the Property of Ben Neuman to his rightful heirs. Anything less is illegal, immoral, and unjust!

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