February 19, 2003


The shame! We've mischaracterized the French (Tony Blankley, Jewish World Review, Feb. 19, 2003)
[T]his Monday, in the European Union meeting, M. Jacque Chirac...revealed himself to be a vulgar, unsubtle, bullying thug. According to the Associated Press, M. Chirac "launched a withering attack ... on eastern European nations who signed letters backing the U.S. position on Iraq ..." He accused them of acting irresponsibly by expressing their opinions. France, which can't stop talking herself, would silence others who speak but rarely. [...]

The list of countries under the French whip is ironic: Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Romania and Bulgaria. All these countries were on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain during the Age of Communism.

They were unlucky enough to be occupied by the Soviet Red Army in the closing months of WWII and thus lived in enforced slavery for half a century. But geography was destiny. France was occupied by American, British, Canadian and other British Empire troops, and was thus saved from such a fate by their English-speaking liberators.

It is worth recalling that while French soldiers were throwing down their rifles in 1940 as the Germans advanced, the flower of Polish manhood charged into the invading Nazi tanks on horseback in the last and most gallant cavalry charge in history. Of course, they were killed to the last man. While the Poles were dying with their boots on, the French were living on their knee-pads (during which, they cheerfully ferreted out and shipped their French Jews off to the German death camps).

How dare the French attempt to blackmail the Poles -- of all people (and the Czechs and Slovaks, who they helped to sell out at Munich).

He left out the French refusal to be part of the NATO military structure during the Cold War, which would have let them off the hook had WWIII commenced, a war that would have determined whether these countries were liberated or remained under Soviet tyranny. Posted by Orrin Judd at February 19, 2003 3:45 PM

The Poles hardly covered themselves with glory in WWII. They were happy to gobble up part of Czechoslovakia in 1938.

Posted by: Jed Roberts at February 19, 2003 5:11 PM

Mr. Roberts;

Didn't the Poles also do the best job of shipping off the Jews to the death camps, even better than Germany itself? Not a good thing to bash France for if you're using Poland as your examplar.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at February 19, 2003 7:15 PM

About 1 in 4 Poles died under Hitler, not all of them Jews.

But, it's true, they did grab Teschen when Czechoslovkia was down.

But it isn't true that Polish cavalry charged panzers. The Poles have a more or less justified reputation for foolhardiness masquerading as gallantry, but they are merely romantics, not idiots.

Posted by: Harry at February 19, 2003 8:08 PM


The Polish Cavalry charge did happen, but neither by design nor choice was it intended to be against German armor.

On 9/1/39, elements of 18th Uhlans Regiment attacked and overran the German 20th Infantry Div. (mot.) only to be counterattacked by German armor.

It was there, in the battle of Krojanty, that German armored columns virtually annihilated Polish cavalry troops attempting to challenge them. This was instantly exploited by propaganda: German - as an example of Polish stupidity, and Polish - as an example of gallantry and devotion.

Posted by: Erik at February 20, 2003 5:31 AM

AUTHOR: Annoying Old Guy
EMAIL: aog@thought-mesh.net
URL: http://blog.thought-mesh.net
DATE: 02/20/2003 08:59:00 AM
AUTHOR: Annoying Old Guy
EMAIL: aog@thought-mesh.net
URL: http://blog.thought-mesh.net
DATE: 2/20/2003 08:59:00 AM

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at February 20, 2003 8:59 AM

Mr. Roberts:

Poland had the fourth largest military at the end of WWII. Polish forces fought with the British in North Africa, Italy and Western Europe. France adopted Vichy and followed a path of cooperation with the Nazis. Take a look at Polish military casualities compared to those of the French. If I ever had to go war I'd rather have a Pole at my side then a Frenchman running off to the rear.

Posted by: Thomas J. Jackson at February 21, 2003 12:30 AM