Church of 2008 Holds Service
Under the Posters Proclaiming
"The Kikes Will Not Continue to Spit on Us."
February 12, 2008
WARSAW - This
was not a pogrom, but it was close. Sunday's incident in
Krakow at the Basilica
of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
was rife with overtones of hatred. "The Jews are
attacking us! We need to defend ourselves," shouted Prof.
Bogoslav Wolniewicz, to stormy applause.
people gathered for special services Sunday at the
church, organized by the Committee Against Defamation of
the Church and For Polishness, along with the
anti-Semitic Radio Maryja. Local residents were informed
of the service by posters that proclaimed: "The kikes
will not continue to spit on us."
The huge church
was packed. People sat on the stairs and stood in the
aisles. The service opened, as usual, with prayer and
song, but after about half an hour, the 91-year-old
bishop of Krakow, Albin Malysiak, began inflaming the
crowd with his sermon.
"A man who does
not love his homeland, but some sort of international
entity, apparently also does not love his nearest and
dearest," he said.
Radio Maryja staffers ascended the dais, headed by Jerzy
Robert Nowak, the station's expert on Jewish affairs. He
spoke about the new and controversial book by Jan Gross,
"Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland after Auschwitz." Nowak,
who was less ambiguous than the bishop, said to applause
from the crowd: "It's important that we carry our fight
to its conclusion, because Gross and his supporters are
marginal, and we will not permit anyone to punish Poland.
Leave us in peace. Leave us alone."
directed their anger at Gross, at Jews in general, at
Jews from Brooklyn in particular, at Poles who are
willing to sell them anything for money, at Righteous
Among the Nations Wladyslaw Bartoszewski, at a minister
in the Prime Minister's Office responsible for
Jewish-Polish affairs; and at the newspaper that, in
their eyes, represents the Polish left, Gazeta Wyborcza,
and its editor, Adam Michnik.
questions from the audience at the end, mostly of the
"how do we defend ourselves against attacks on the church
and on Poland" variety. "The best thing is to get
organized," Nowak responded.