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November 20, 2015 5:59 pm

Polish Prosecutors Announce Probe of Anti-Refugee Rally Over Burning Effigy of Orthodox Jew

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An effigy of a Jew at an anti-immigration protest in Poland. Photo: Screenshot.

An effigy of a Jew at an anti-immigration protest in Poland. Photo: Screenshot.

Polish prosecutors have launched a probe into a nationalist anti-refugee protest in the city of Wroclaw where demonstrators burned an effigy of an Orthodox Jewish man, ABC News reported on Friday.

Prosecutors said they launched a probe of Wednesday’s demonstration, attended by dozens at a portable stage in front of city hall, at the request of Wroclaw Mayor Rafal Dutkiewicz.

According to a spokeswoman for the prosecutors, investigators were trying to determine whether protesters broke the law by publicly insulting people based on ethnicity, race, religion or nationality — which is punishable in Poland by up to three years in prison, according to the report.

Jonny Daniels, founder and executive director of Holocaust education initiative From the Depths, said the incident marked a pattern of antisemitic incidents in the country, which he said are often ignored by the authorities.

“Unfortunately, this incident is following a pattern of antisemitic events in Poland that are simply not being taken seriously by the authorities,” he said. “You have antisemitic graffiti all over major cities like Kraków and antisemitic chants at football games and none of these are ever dealt with.”

“Poland needs to deal harshly with these acts of racism, be it, from the smallest incident to the burning of an effigy, because unfortunately as we’ve seen in the past when right wing extremists demonize a race and jokingly burn an effigy of them, it doesn’t take too long until they start burning actual people,” he told the Algemeiner.

Polish Chief Rabbi Michael Shudrich noted the odd juxtaposition of burning effigies of Jewish people at a rally meant to protest against an influx of refugees from the crisis in Syria — who are mostly Muslim.

“This is just one more example showing how the hatred for migrants comes from the same place as the classic hatred for Jews,” he said.

The incident came only a few days after Polish media reported on a banner hung in the city of Poznon, which was quickly removed, that called for an “Islamic Holocaust.”

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  • Barbara

    Two questions?
    What remarks has the pope made regarding this?
    What would Jesus do?

  • HaroldT

    Nothing has changed in 80 years. Still the same Nazi’s.

  • Alex

    I’m wondering if a Christian were burned in effigy by muslims, would the authorities be so quick to bemoan the “racism” of it all and prosecute the muslim? I tend to be lieve that they wouldn’t. Instead, the Christians would be given endless lectures on “tolerance” and “understanding Islamic culture.”

    Only Jews have been able to cultivate White, European guilt to such a degree that people whom they dislike can be fined, go to jail, or both for saying/doing something that upsets them.

    “Remembah the Holocaust!! Never again!”

  • Fred

    Although Poland at times tries to distance itself from the Holocaust as a bystander , it was a participant and did not need prodding. Galizia is full of mass graves where the locals murdered their neighbours & “friends “. When one of the murderers wore a Kaftan to church the Priest admonished him for the wrong wear. After the war one should remember Kielce where Jews were murdered. The revival of Catholicism again was a revival of the Jew Christ killer. Anti Semitism is part of the Polish psyche. now they are getting the Muslim “refugees” they may experience their comeuppance .

  • Wilfred M. Weinstein

    These poor pitiful Poles should be forgiven. It is in their DNA. They got it from their parents or grandparents. The latter were well known with some angelic exceptions to be Hitler’s willing executioners. And furthermore to quote the late great Abba Eban in reference to Israel ‘ s neighbor. “They never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity”.

    • Florres

      Far longer than grandparents.