Monday, May 1, 2017

Polish POV, Really?

As I said not for once, I like Polish culture and, for me being a product of Soviet culture, we all grew up with heavy Polish cultural presence in USSR. Sadly, the times of Pub 13 Chairs or of Sopot music festivals of 1960s and 70s are long gone and we are left with Polish politicians who are either total nutjobs who went full James Forrestal, such as Poland's Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz, or we get smooth operators such as Poland's Peasant Party's big honcho Władysław Kosiniak, who came up with a "brilliant" idea: he proposed to increase political sanctions on Russia while removing economic ones (in Polish). Make no mistake, Kosiniak's rationale behind this harebrained scheme has nothing to do with Russia--it has everything to do with Poles who, in Kosiniak's words "suffer" from economic sanctions on Russia. Duh!

I can only scratch my head in disbelief. Poland was one of the initiators of the coup in Ukraine, she also was a major driver behind West's sanctions on Russia. Anti-Russian hysteria in Poland, especially among elites, rivals that in US and now Polish politicians who have to deal with the loss of Russia's large market want to remove sanctions? We have to clarify here what sanctions. As you may remember, Russia responded to EU sanctions with her own counter-sanctions. Now it begins to hurt Polish farmers but the immediate question is this: guys, these are yours, not Russia's, politicians who joyfully slapped sanctions on Russia, so talk to Warsaw or Brussels, not Moscow. Russia didn't start it, you did. Now, when it hurts (and it will hurt even more with Nord Stream-2 moving ahead) Poland wants sanctions, economic ones, removed and yet slap additional political sanctions on Russia. Talk about being hypocritical to the point of a complete loss of any rationality. 

The history of this sanctions question is very simple: Poland, who wants to feel herself a real big honcho in EU, thought that she, with obvious support of US Polish diaspora and US-European financing, will be well positioned for dictating her, Polish, conditions to both, Russia and EU. What Poland, of course, forgot was the fact that she is an economic dwarf when compared to Russia. Russia easily compensated for the loss of Polish agricultural products and today, in 2017, really doesn't feel that she needs Poland in any economic capacity. Poland barely registers in Russia's foreign trade and that is the way it should stay until all sanctions are completely and unconditionally removed, which, as we all know, is not going to happen. Well, too bad. So, Poland has to deal with "suffering" completely on her own and remember that one reaps what one sows. That is, there are consequences for everything one does.

Once Nord Stream 2 is completed, Poland will be bypassed by it and will become simply completely unimportant to Russia's economy, especially against the background of ongoing import-substitution in Russia, which, however slowly begins to bear its fruits--literally and figuratively speaking. Poland made her choices and Russia respects them in a sense that, as old Russian proverb goes--nasilno mil ne budesh (one can not coerce someone to love one). Polish pride and follie de grandeur will continue, as they always did historically, but this time they will continue within Poland's worst case scenario of becoming irrelevant. The only commodity Poland will still have to sell will be her visceral Russophobia and her territory for NATO bases but this is a separate issue altogether.

UPDATE: meanwhile Poland is having some issues with EU in general, and Mr. Macron in particular. I guess Poland needs a "cultural enrichment" by EU through welcoming "refugees". No? 

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