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 SOURCE:    https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/full-transcript-president-bidens-speech-warsaw-russias-invasion/story?id=83690301

Full transcript of President Biden's speech in Warsaw on Russia's invasion of Ukraine 
     VIDEO > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O729ZiRwK50  

 #ABCNews #PresidentJoeBiden #Warsaw    Biden delivers remarks on Ukraine crisis from Warsaw | ABC News  31,473 views  Mar 26, 2022 ::  By ABC News   March 26, 2022, 4:51 PM

"Kierkegaard" "Faith sees best in the dark"
 - https://www.patheos.com/blogs/unsystematictheology/2015/09/faith-sees-best-in-the-dark-joe-biden-and-kierkegaard/
 - https://qz.com/501014/philosophers-explain-the-meaning-of-the-kierkegaard-quote-that-comforts-joe-biden/
 - https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kierkegaard/ 
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%B8ren_Kierkegaard 

Pope John Paul II
[ Poland :  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poland > 
SOURCE:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poland#History

History : Main article: History of Poland  ( Prehistory and protohistory )

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov%E2%80%93Ribbentrop_Pact  < MOLOTOV




Main articles: Bronze- and Iron-Age PolandPoland in AntiquityEarly SlavsWest SlavsLechites, and Poland in the Early Middle Ages

  A reconstruction of a Bronze AgeLusatian culture settlement in Biskupin, 8th century BC

The first Stone Age archaic humans and Homo erectus species settled what was to become Poland approximately 500,000 years ago, though the ensuing hostile climate prevented early humans from founding more permanent encampments.[34] There is evidence that sporadic groups of hunter-gatherer Neanderthals penetrated southern Polish regions during the Eemian interglacial period (128,000–115,000 BCE) and in the subsequent millennia.[35] The arrival of Homo sapiens and anatomically modern humans coincided with the climatic discontinuity at the end of the Last Glacial Period (10,000 BC), when Poland became habitable.[36] Neolithic excavations indicated broad-ranging development in that era; the earliest evidence of European cheesemaking (5500 BC) was discovered in Polish Kuyavia,[37] and the Bronocice pot is incised with the earliest known depiction of what may be a wheeled vehicle (3400 BC).[38]

The period spanning the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age (1300 BC–500 BC) was marked by an increase in population density, establishment of palisaded hamlets (gords) and the expansion of Lusatian culture, which held strong ties to Nordic and Hallstatt material culture.[39][40] A significant archaeological find from the protohistory of Poland is a fortified settlement at Biskupin, attributed to the Lusatian culture of the Late Bronze Age (mid-8th century BC).[41]

Throughout antiquity (400 BC–500 AD), many distinct ancient ethnic groups populated the territory of present-day Poland, notably CelticScythianGermanicSarmatianSlavic and Baltic tribes.[42] Furthermore, archaeological findings confirmed the presence of Roman Legions sent to protect the amber trade.[43] The Polish tribes emerged following the second wave of the Migration Period around the 6th century AD.[28] They were Slavic in origin, but also encompassed assimilated peoples who previously inhabited the area.[44][45] Beginning in the early 10th century, the Polans would come to dominate other Lechitic tribes in the region, initially forming a tribal federation and later a centralised monarchial state.[46]

Piast dynasty

Main articles: History of Poland during the Piast dynastyChristianization of Poland, and Kingdom of Poland (1025–1385)

Poland under the rule of Duke Mieszko I, whose acceptance of Christianity under the auspices of the Latin Church and the Baptism of Poland marked the beginning of statehood in 966

Poland began to form into a recognizable unitary and territorial entity around the middle of the 10th century under the Piast dynasty. Poland's first historically documented ruler, Mieszko I, accepted Christianity as the rightful religion under the auspices of the Latin Church with the Baptism of Poland in 966 AD.[47] In 1000, Bolesław I the Brave, continuing the policy of his father Mieszko, held a diplomatic congress and established the metropolis of Gniezno followed by dioceses in KrakówKołobrzeg, and Wrocław.[48]

Otto III, Holy Roman Emperor, assented to the creation of bishoprics and bestowed upon Bolesław royal regalia and a replica of the Holy Lance, which were used for his coronation as the first King of Poland in circa 1025.[49] He expanded the realm considerably by seizing parts of German Lusatia, Czech MoraviaUpper Hungary and the eastern provinces.[50] However, the transition from paganism proved difficult and was not an instantaneous process for the rest of the population as evident from the pagan reaction of the 1030s.[51] His son, Mieszko II Lambert, lost the title of king and fled amidst the struggles for power in 1031, but was reinstated as duke in 1032.[52] The unrest led to the transfer of the capital to Kraków in 1038 by Casimir I the Restorer.[53]

The earliest known contemporary depiction of a Polish monarch, King Mieszko II Lambert of Poland, who ruled between 1025 and 1031

In 1076, Bolesław II briefly re-instituted the office of king, but was banished in 1079 for murdering his opponent Bishop Stanislaus, who was then proclaimed a martyr and patron saint.[54] In 1109, Bolesław III Wrymouth defeated the King of Germany Henry V at the Battle of Hundsfeld, thus stopping the German advance into Poland. The clash was documented by Gallus Anonymus in Gesta principum Polonorum, the oldest Polish chronicle.[55]

In 1138, Poland fragmented into several smaller principalities when Bolesław divided his lands among his sons.[30] These comprised the Duchies of Lesser Poland, Greater Poland, SilesiaMasovia and Sandomierz, with Pomerania ruled by vassals. The division allowed each province to develop its own cultural identity and wealth, but made the country more vulnerable militarily.[56] In 1226, Konrad I of Masovia, one of the regional dukes, invited the Teutonic Knights to aid in combating the Baltic Prussian pagans; a decision that led to centuries of warfare with the Knights.[57]

In the mid-13th century, the Silesian branch of the Piast dynasty (Henry I the Bearded and Henry II the Pious) nearly succeeded in uniting the dukedoms.[58] Their efforts were hindered by the Mongols, who pillaged the southern and eastern regions of Poland, and defeated the combined Polish forces at the Battle of Legnica (1241) where Henry II was killed.[59] The Mongols raided twice more in the second half of the century, but were defeated and driven out by the Poles. In 1264, the Statute of Kalisz, or the General Charter of Jewish Liberties, introduced unprecedented rights for the Polish Jews, leading to a nearly autonomous "nation within a nation".[60] Cities began to grow during this period and new settlements were granted town privileges under Magdeburg Law, which also favoured German migration into Poland.[61]

Casimir III the Great is the only Polish king to receive the title of Great. He built extensively during his reign, and reformed the Polish army along with the country's legal code, 1333–70.

In 1320, after an earlier unsuccessful attempt at unification by Przemysł IIWładysław I the Short consolidated his power, took the throne and became the first king of a reunified Poland.[62] He was the first sovereign crowned at Wawel Cathedral with Szczerbiec ("Jagged Sword"), which symbolised the permanent restoration of kingship.[63] His son, Casimir III (reigned 1333–1370), gained wide recognition for improving the country's infrastructure, reforming the army and strengthening diplomacy.[64][65] He also extended royal protection to Jews, and encouraged them to settle in Poland.[64][66] Casimir hoped to build a class of educated people, especially lawyers, who could codify the country's laws and administer the courts and offices. His efforts were finally rewarded when Pope Urban V granted him permission to open the University of Kraków in 1364, one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in Europe.[67] Under his authority, Poland was transformed into a major European power.[68]

The Black Death, a plague that ravaged Europe from 1347 to 1351, did not significantly affect Poland, and the country was spared from a major outbreak of the disease.[69][70] The reason for this was the decision of Casimir to quarantine the nation's borders. Furthermore, the concept of Golden Liberty began to develop under his rule – in return for military support, the king made a series of concessions to the nobility and establishing their legal status as superior to that of the townsfolk.[71] When Casimir the Great died in 1370, leaving no legitimate male heir, the Piast dynasty came to an end.[72]

In November 1370, Casimir's nephew and closest male relative, Louis of Anjou, was crowned king at Wawel.[73] He ruled Poland, Hungary and Croatia in a personal union. Like his uncle, Louis I had no sons and persuaded his subjects to acknowledge the right of his daughters to succeed him in both Poland and Hungary by granting privileges.[74] Upon his death and a two-year interregnum, his younger daughter Hedwig (in Poland known as Jadwiga) became the first female monarch of the Kingdom of Poland in 1384.[73] However, she was stylised as "king" during her reign because the Polish law had no provision for a queen regnant, but did not specify that the monarch had to be male.[75][76]

Jagiellonian dynasty

Main articles: History of Poland during the Jagiellonian dynastyKingdom of Poland (1385–1569), and Renaissance in Poland

The Battle of Grunwald was fought against the German Order of Teutonic Knights, and resulted in a decisive victory for the Kingdom of Poland, 15 July 1410.

In 1385, Jadwiga was expected to marry William Habsburg of Austria, but the noble lords were apprehensive about the match believing that it would not secure national interests against the Luxembourgs, who controlled Bohemia and Brandenburg.[77] She eventually wedded the Lithuanian Grand Duke Jogaila (Władysław II Jagiełło), thus forming the Jagiellonian dynasty (1386–1572) and the Polish–Lithuanian union that spanned the late Middle Ages and early Modern Era. The partnership brought the vast multi-ethnic Lithuanian territories into Poland's sphere of influence and proved beneficial for the Poles and Lithuanians, who coexisted in one of the largest European political entities of the time.[78]

In the Baltic Sea region, the struggle of Poland and Lithuania with the Teutonic Knights continued and culminated at the Battle of Grunwald in 1410, where a combined Polish-Lithuanian army inflicted a decisive victory against them.[79] In 1466, after the Thirteen Years' War, King Casimir IV Jagiellon gave royal consent to the Peace of Thorn, which created the future Duchy of Prussia under Polish suzerainty.[30] The Jagiellonian dynasty at one point also established dynastic control over the kingdoms of Bohemia (1471 onwards) and Hungary.[80][81] In the south, Poland confronted the Ottoman Empire and the Crimean Tatars, and in the east helped Lithuania fight Russia.[30]

Poland was developing as a feudal state, with a predominantly agricultural economy and an increasingly powerful landed nobility. In 1493, John I Albert sanctioned the creation of a bicameral parliament composed of a lower house, the Sejm, and an upper house, the Senate.[82] The Nihil novi act adopted by the Polish General Sejm in 1505, transferred most of the legislative power from the monarch to the parliament, an event which marked the beginning of the period known as "Golden Liberty", when the state was ruled by the "free and equal" Polish nobility.[83]

Wawel Castle in Kraków, seat of Polish kings from 1038 until the capital was moved to Warsaw in 1596. The royal residence is an example of Renaissance architecture in Poland.

The Protestant Reformation movements made deep inroads into Polish Christianity, which resulted in the establishment of policies promoting religious tolerance, unique in Europe at that time.[84] This tolerance allowed the country to avoid most of the religious turmoil that spread over Europe during the 16th century.[84] In Poland, Nontrinitarian Christianity became the doctrine of the so-called Polish Brethren, who separated from their Calvinist denomination and became the co-founders of global Unitarianism.[85]

The European Renaissance evoked under kings Sigismund I the Old and Sigismund II Augustus a sense of urgency in the need to promote a cultural awakening.[30] During this period Polish culture and the nation's economy flourished; changes and contributions to architecturecuisine, language and customs were made at the behest of Sigismund the Old's wife, the Italian-born Bona Sforza, daughter of the Duke of Milan.[30] In 1543, Nicolaus Copernicus, an astronomer from Toruń, published his epochal work De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres) and thereby became the first proponent of a predictive mathematical model confirming the heliocentric theory, which became the accepted basic model for the practice of modern astronomy.[30]

Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth

Main articles: History of Poland in the Early Modern era (1569–1795)Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, and Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth

The Warsaw Confederation extended religious freedoms and tolerance in the Commonwealth, and was the first of its kind act in Europe, 28 January 1573.

The 1569 Union of Lublin established the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, a more closely unified federal state with an elective monarchy, but which was governed largely by the nobility.[86] The Warsaw Confederation (1573) guaranteed religious freedom for the Polish nobles (szlachta) and townsfolk (mieszczanie).[87] However, the peasants (chłopi) were still subject to severe limitations imposed on them by the nobility, and confined to private folwark farmsteads.[60] The establishment of the Commonwealth coincided with a period of stability and prosperity, with the union thereafter becoming a European power and a major cultural entity, occupying approximately 1 million km2 (390,000 sq mi) after the Truce of Deulino.[88] It was the largest state in Europe at the time.[89] Poland was the dominant partner and acted as an agent for the dissemination of Western culture, Catholicism and Polish traditions through Polonization into areas of North-Eastern Europe which it controlled following the union. Certain factions of Lithuanian nobility were apprehensive about the merger, fearing that it would lead to the loss of Lithuania's cultural identity.[90]

In 1573, Henry de Valois, son of Henry II of France and Catherine de' Medici, was proclaimed King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania in the first election.[91] He hesitantly instituted the Henrician Articles which determined the principles of royal governance, thus further limiting the power of a monarch.[92] Henry's reign was brief; he was dethroned in 1575 after fleeing to succeed his brother, Charles IX, in France.[92] His successor, Stephen Báthory from Transylvania, proved to be a capable military commander. Báthory's involvement alongside Sweden and successful campaign in the Livonian War against Ivan the Terrible granted Poland more territories in Livonia (in what is now Latvia and Estonia).[93]

The Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth at its greatest extent after the Truce of Deulino. During the first half of the 17th century, the Commonwealth covered an area of about 1,000,000 square kilometres (390,000 sq mi).

In 1592, Sigismund III of Poland succeeded his father, John Vasa, in Sweden.[94] Under his authority, the Commonwealth and Sweden temporarily united in what was known as the Polish-Swedish union. Sigismund was a talented figure, but a Catholic fanatic and a despot who hoped to reintroduce absolutism.[95] He was a strong advocate of Counter-Reformation, funded the Jesuits, and furtively supported repressions against the Protestants and other religious minorities. In 1599, he was deposed in Sweden by his Protestant uncle Charles, which ended the union.[96] Sigismund's long reign in Poland was described as the Silver Age due to his investments and patronage over artists, scholars and architects.[97] In politics, he undermined parliament and imposed expansionist policies.[98]

Taking advantage of a civil war in neighbouring Russia, Sigismund invaded the country in 1609.[30] In 1610, the Polish army and winged hussar units under the command of Hetman Stanisław Żółkiewski seized Moscow after defeating the Russians at the Battle of Klushino.[30] The humiliated Vasili IV of Russia was caged and sent to Poland where he paid tribute in Warsaw and was later murdered in captivity.[99] The Poles were eventually driven out of ruined Moscow after two years by a local uprising. Sigismund also countered the Ottoman Empire in the southeast; at Khotyn in 1621 the Commonwealth forces under Jan Karol Chodkiewicz achieved a decisive victory against the Turks.[100] Their defeat and subsequent Janissary revolt marked the downfall of Sultan Osman II.[101] Sigismund's liberal son, Ladislaus IV Vasa, successfully defended Poland's territorial possessions, but his death ended the centuries-long era of relative stability.[102]

King John III Sobieski defeated the Ottoman Turks at the Battle of Vienna on 12 September 1683.

From the middle of the 17th century, the nobles' democracy, suffering from internal disorder, gradually declined, thereby leaving the once powerful Commonwealth vulnerable.[103] The Polish and Catholic domination of present-day Ukraine resulted in the 1648 Khmelnytsky Uprising, which engulfed much of the eastern parts of the country and led to the creation of a Ukrainian Cossack state allied with Russia.[104] This was followed by the Swedish Deluge during the Second Northern War, which marched through the Polish heartlands and decimated the country's population and infrastructure.[105] Finding itself subjected to almost constant warfare, the Commonwealth fell into decline, further weakened when Prussia declared independence in 1657.[105] The government became ineffective as a result of internal conflicts, rebellious confederations and corrupted legislative processes.[105] However, under John III Sobieski the Commonwealth's military prowess was re-established, and in 1683 Polish forces played a major role in the Battle of Vienna against the Ottoman Army.[106]

The lesser nobility fell under the control of magnates, and this, compounded with two relatively weak kings of the Saxon Wettin dynastyAugustus II and Augustus III, as well as the rise of neighbouring countries after the Great Northern War only served to worsen the Commonwealth's plight.[107] Despite this, the personal union of Poland and Saxony gave rise to the Commonwealth's first reform movement and laid the foundations for the Polish Enlightenment.[108] The fundamental internal reforms brought a much-improved economy, significant population growth and far-reaching progress in the areas of education, intellectual life, art, and especially toward the end of the period, the evolution of the social and political system. The most populous capital city of Warsaw replaced Gdańsk (Danzig) as the leading centre of commerce, and the role of the more prosperous urban population increased.[109]


Main articles: History of Poland (1795–1918) and Partitions of Poland

Stanislaus II Augustus, the last King of Poland, ascended to the throne in 1764 and reigned until his abdication on 25 November 1795.

The royal election of 1764 resulted in the elevation of Stanislaus II Augustus (a Polish aristocrat from the Poniatowski family, connected to the Familia faction of magnates) to the monarchy.[110] 

His candidacy was extensively funded by his sponsor and former lover, Empress Catherine II of Russia.[111] 

The new king spent much of his reign maneuvering between his desire to implement necessary reforms to save the country from internal disorder, and the necessity to remain in a political relationship and at peace with surrounding states.[112] This led to the formation of the 1768 Bar Confederation, a rebellion of nobles directed against the Polish king and all external influence, which ineptly aimed to preserve Poland's sovereignty and privileges held by the nobility.[113]

The failed attempts at reform as well as the domestic turmoil caused by the Confederation proved the country's weakness and provoked its neighbours to intervene.[114] In 1772 the First Partition of the Commonwealth by Prussia, Russia and Austria took place; an act which the Partition Sejm, under considerable duress, eventually "ratified" as a fait accompli.[115] Disregarding the territorial losses, in 1773 the king established a plan of the most necessary reforms, in which the Commission of National Education, the first government education authority in Europe, was inaugurated.[116] Corporal punishment of schoolchildren was officially prohibited in 1783. Poniatowski was the head figure of the Polish Enlightenment, encouraged the development of industries, and embraced "republican" Neoclassical architecture.[117] For his contributions to the arts and sciences he was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Society, where he became the first royal member outside British royalty.[118]

Constitution of 3 May, enactment ceremony inside the Senate Chamber at the Warsaw Royal Castle, 1791

The Great Sejm (1788–1792) convened by Stanislaus Augustus successfully adopted in 1791 the 3 May Constitution, the first set of modern supreme national laws in Europe.[119] However, this document, accused by detractors of harbouring revolutionary sympathies, generated strong opposition from the Commonwealth's aristocracy and conservatives as well as from Catherine, who, determined to prevent the rebirth of a strong Commonwealth set about planning the final dismemberment of the Polish-Lithuanian state. Russia was aided in achieving its goal when the Targowica Confederation, an organisation of Polish nobles, appealed to the Empress for help. In May 1792, Russian forces crossed the Commonwealth's eastern frontier, thus beginning the Polish–Russian War.[120]

The defensive war fought by the Poles ended prematurely when the King, convinced of the futility of resistance, capitulated and joined the Targowica Confederation, hoping to save the country. The Confederation then took over the government. Russia and Prussia, fearing the reemergence of a Polish state, understanding, that despite the current influence they still cannot control the country, arranged for, and in 1793 executed, the Second Partition of the Commonwealth, which left the country deprived of so much territory that it was practically incapable of independent existence. In 1795, following the failed Kościuszko Uprising, the Commonwealth was partitioned one last time by all three of its more powerful neighbours,[121] and with this, effectively ceased to exist.[122] The 18-century British statesman and philosopher Edmund Burke summed up the partitions: "No wise or honest man can approve of that partition, or can contemplate it without prognosticating great mischief from it to all countries at some future time".[123]

Era of insurrections

Main articles: Austrian PartitionPrussian Partition, and Russian Partition

The partitions of Poland, carried out by the Kingdom of Prussia (blue), the Russian Empire (brown), and the Austrian Habsburg Monarchy (green) in 17721793 and 1795.

Poles rebelled several times against the partitioners, particularly near the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century. An unsuccessful attempt at defending Poland's sovereignty took place in 1794 during the Kościuszko Uprising, where a popular and distinguished general Tadeusz Kościuszko, who had several years earlier served under Washington in the American Revolutionary War, led Polish insurrectionists. Despite the victory at the Battle of Racławice, his ultimate defeat ended Poland's independent existence for 123 years.[124]

Tadeusz Kościuszko was a veteran and hero of both the Polish and American wars of independence.[125]

In 1807, Napoleon I of France temporarily recreated a Polish state as the satellite Duchy of Warsaw, after a successful 1806 uprising against Prussian rule. By the Treaty of Tilsit, the duchy was ruled by his ally, Frederick Augustus I of Saxony. The Polish troops and generals aided Napoleon throughout the Napoleonic Wars, particularly those under Józef Poniatowski, who became the only foreign Marshal of the French Empire shortly before his death at the Battle of Leipzig.[126] In the aftermath of Napoleon's exile, Poland was again split between the victorious powers at the Congress of Vienna in 1815.[127] The eastern part was ruled by the Russian tsar as Congress Poland, which temporarily held a liberal constitution. The Prussian-controlled territory of western Poland came under increased Germanization. Thus, in the 19th century, only Habsburg-ruled Austrian Poland and the Free City of Kraków in the south, allowed free Polish culture to flourish.

In 1830, the November Uprising began in Warsaw when young non-commissioned officers at the Officer Cadet School rebelled.[128] Although the numerically smaller Polish forces successfully defeated several Russian armies, they were left unsupported by France and the newborn United States. With Prussia and Austria deliberately prohibiting the import of military supplies through their territories, the Poles accepted that the uprising was doomed to failure. After the defeat, the semi-independent Congress Poland lost its constitution, army and legislative assembly, and its autonomy was abolished.[129]

During the European Spring of Nations, Poles took up arms in the Greater Poland Uprising of 1848 to resist the Prussians.

Initially, the uprising manifested itself in the form of civil disobedience but eventually turned into an armed struggle when the Prussian military was sent in to pacify the region. Subsequently, the uprising was suppressed and the semi-autonomous Grand Duchy of Posen, created from the Prussian partition of Poland, was incorporated into Prussia, and in 1871 into the German Empire.[130]

In 1863, a new Polish uprising against Russia began. The January Uprising started as a spontaneous protest by young Poles against conscription into the Imperial Russian Army. However, the insurrectionists, despite being joined by high-ranking Polish–Lithuanian officers and numerous politicians, were still severely outnumbered and lacking in foreign support. They were forced to resort to guerrilla warfare tactics and failed to win any major military victories. Consequently, the Poles resorted to fostering economic and cultural self-improvement. Congress Poland was rapidly industrialized towards the end of the 19th century, and successively transformed into the Russian Empire's wealthiest and most developed subject.[131][132]

Second Polish Republic

Main articles: History of Poland (1918–1939)Battle of Warsaw (1920), and Second Polish Republic

Chief of State Marshal Józef Piłsudski was a hero of the Polish independence campaign and the nation's premiere statesman from 1918 until his death on 12 May 1935.

Following World War I all the Allies agreed on the reconstitution of Poland that United States President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed in Point 13 of his Fourteen Points.

A total of 2 million Polish troops fought with the armies of the three occupying powers, and 450,000 died. Shortly after the armistice with Germany in November 1918, Poland regained its independence as the Second Polish Republic (II Rzeczpospolita Polska). It reaffirmed its independence after a series of military conflicts, the most notable being the Polish–Soviet War (1919–1921) when Poland inflicted a crushing defeat on the Red Army at the Battle of Warsaw, an event which is considered to have halted the advance of Communism into Europe and forced Vladimir Lenin to rethink his objective of achieving global socialism. The event is often referred to as the "Miracle at the Vistula".[133]

During this period, Poland successfully managed to fuse the territories of the three former partitioning powers into a cohesive nation-state. Railways were restructured to direct traffic towards Warsaw instead of the former imperial capitals, a new network of national roads was gradually built up and a major seaport, Gdynia, was opened on the Baltic Coast, to allow Polish exports and imports to bypass the politically charged Free City of Danzig. Also, the Polish government embarked on the creation of the Central Industrial Region (Centralny Okręg Przemysłowy). The project's goal was to create an industrial center in the middle of the country that included steel mills, power plants, and factories.

Map of Poland during the Interwar period, 1921–1939 

The inter-war period heralded a new era of Polish politics. Whilst Polish political activists had faced heavy censorship in the decades up until the First World War, the country now found itself trying to establish a new political tradition.

For this reason, many exiled Polish activists, such as Ignacy Paderewski (who would later become prime minister) returned home to help; a significant number of them then went on to take key positions in the newly formed political and governmental structures. Tragedy struck in 1922 when Gabriel Narutowicz, inaugural holder of the presidency, was assassinated at the Zachęta Gallery in Warsaw by a painter and right-wing nationalist Eligiusz Niewiadomski.[134]

In 1926, a May coup, led by the hero of the Polish independence campaign Marshal Józef Piłsudski, turned rule of the Second Polish Republic over to the nonpartisan Sanacja (Healing) movement to prevent radical political organizations on both the left and the right from destabilizing the country.[e] The movement functioned with relative stability until Piłsudski's death in 1935. Following Marshal Piłsudski's death, Sanation split into several competing factions.[138] 

By the late 1930s, due to increased threats posed by political extremism inside the country, the Polish government became increasingly heavy-handed, banning a number of radical organizations, including communist and ultra-nationalist political parties, which threatened the stability of the country.[139]

World War II

Main articles: History of Poland (1939–1945)Invasion of PolandPolish contribution to World War II, and War crimes in occupied Poland during World War II

Polish Army 7TP tanks on military manoeuvres shortly before the invasion of Poland in 1939

World War II began with the Nazi German invasion of Poland on 1 September 1939, followed by the Soviet invasion of Poland on 17 September.

On 28 September 1939, Warsaw fell.

As agreed in the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, Poland was split into two zones, one occupied by Nazi Germany, the other by the Soviet Union.

In 1939–1941, the Soviets deported hundreds of thousands of Poles. The Soviet NKVD executed thousands of Polish prisoners of war (inter alia Katyn massacre) ahead of the Operation Barbarossa.[140] 

German planners had in November 1939 called for "the complete destruction of all Poles" and their fate as outlined in the genocidal Generalplan Ost.[141]

Poland made the fourth-largest troop contribution in Europe[f] and its troops served both the Polish Government in Exile in the west and Soviet leadership in the east.

Polish troops played an important role in the NormandyItalian and North African Campaigns and are particularly remembered for the Battle of Monte Cassino.[145][146] Polish intelligence operatives proved extremely valuable to the Allies, providing much of the intelligence from Europe and beyond,[147] and Polish code breakers were responsible for cracking the Enigma cipher.[g] 

In the east, the Soviet-backed Polish 1st Army distinguished itself in the battles for Warsaw and Berlin.[149]

Pilots of the 303 Polish Fighter Squadron during the Battle of Britain, October 1940

The wartime resistance movement, and the Armia Krajowa (Home Army), fought against German occupation. It was one of the three largest resistance movements of the entire war,[h] and encompassed a range of clandestine activities, which functioned as an underground state complete with degree-awarding universities and a court system.[156] The resistance was loyal to the exiled government and generally resented the idea of a communist Poland; for this reason, in the summer of 1944 it initiated Operation Tempest, of which the Warsaw Uprising that begun on 1 August 1944 is the best-known operation.[149][157]

Map of the Holocaust in German-occupied Poland with deportation routes and massacre sites. Major ghettos are marked with yellow stars. Nazi extermination camps are marked with white skulls in black squares. The border in 1941 between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union is marked in red.

Nazi German forces under orders - from Adolf Hitler - set up six German extermination camps in occupied Poland, including TreblinkaMajdanek and Auschwitz. The Germans transported millions of Jews - from across occupied Europe to be murdered in those camps.[158][159] 

Altogether, 3 million Polish Jews[160][161] – approximately 90% of Poland's pre-war Jewry – and between 1.8 and 2.8 million ethnic Poles[162][163][164] were killed during the German occupation of Poland, including between 50,000 and 100,000 members of the Polish intelligentsia – academics, doctors, lawyers, nobility and priesthood. During the Warsaw Uprising alone, over 150,000 Polish civilians were killed, most were murdered by the Germans during the Wola and Ochota massacres.[165][166] 

Around 150,000 Polish civilians were killed by Soviets between 1939 and 1941 during the Soviet Union's occupation of eastern Poland (Kresy), and another estimated 100,000 Poles were murdered by the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) between 1943 and 1944 in what became known as the Wołyń Massacres.[167][168] 

Of all the countries in the war, Poland lost the highest percentage of its citizens: around 6 million perished – more than one-sixth of Poland's pre-war population – half of them Polish Jews.[18][169][170] About 90% of deaths were non-military in nature.[171]

In 1945, Poland's borders were shifted westwards. Over two million Polish inhabitants of Kresy were expelled along the Curzon Line by Stalin.[172] 

The western border became the Oder-Neisse line. As a result, Poland's territory was reduced by 20%, or 77,500 square kilometres (29,900 sq mi).

The shift forced the migration of millions of other people, most of whom were Poles, Germans, Ukrainians, and Jews.[173][174][175]

Post-war communism

Main articles: History of Poland (1945–1989)Polish People's RepublicHistory of Solidarity, and Polish Round Table Agreement

At High Noon, 4 June 1989 — political poster featuring Gary Cooper - to encourage votes for the Solidarity party in the 1989 elections

At the insistence of Joseph Stalin, the Yalta Conference sanctioned the formation of a new provisional "pro-Communist" coalition government in Moscow, which ignored the Polish government-in-exile based in London.

This action angered many Poles who considered it a betrayal - by the Allies.

In 1944, Stalin had made guarantees to Churchill and Roosevelt that he would maintain Poland's sovereignty and allow democratic elections to take place.

 However, upon achieving victory in 1945, the elections organized - by the occupying Soviet authorities - were falsified - and, were used to provide a veneer of legitimacy for Soviet hegemony over Polish affairs.

The Soviet Union instituted a new communist government in Poland, analogous to much of the rest of the Eastern BlocAs elsewhere in Communist Europe.
 The Soviet influence over Poland was met with armed resistance from the outset which continued into the 1950s.[176] 

Despite widespread objections, the new Polish government accepted the Soviet annexation of the pre-war eastern regions of Poland[177] (in particular the cities of Wilno and Lwów) and agreed to the permanent garrisoning of Red Army units on Poland's territory.

  [Poland's] Military alignment within the Warsaw Pact throughout the Cold War came about as a direct result of this change in Poland's political culture.

In the European scene, it came to characterize the full-fledged integration of Poland into the brotherhood of communist nations.[178] 

The new communist government took control with the adoption of the Small Constitution on 19 February 1947. The Polish People's Republic (Polska Rzeczpospolita Ludowawas officially proclaimed in 1952. In 1956, after the death of Bolesław Bierut, the régime of Władysław Gomułka became temporarily more liberal, freeing many people from prison and expanding some personal freedoms. Collectivization in the Polish People's Republic failed. A similar situation repeated itself in the 1970s under Edward Gierek, but most of the time persecution of anti-communist opposition groups persisted. Despite this, Poland was at the time considered to be one of the least oppressive states of the Eastern Bloc.[179]

Labour turmoil in 1980 led to the formation of the independent trade union "Solidarity" ("Solidarność"), which over time became a political force.

Despite persecution and imposition of martial law in 1981, it eroded the dominance of the Polish United Workers' Party and by 1989 had triumphed in Poland's first partially free and democratic parliamentary elections since the end of the Second World War.

 Lech Wałęsa, a Solidarity candidate, eventually won the presidency in 1990.

The Solidarity movement heralded the collapse of communist regimes and parties across Europe.[180]

1989 to present

Main articles: History of Poland (1989–present) and 2004 enlargement of the European Union

Poland became a member state of the European Union on 1 May 2004.

shock therapy program, initiated by Leszek Balcerowicz in the early 1990s, enabled the country to transform its socialist-style planned economy into a market economy.[181] 

As with other post-communist countries, Poland suffered temporary declines in social, economic, and living standards,[182] but it became the first post-communist country to reach its pre-1989 GDP levels as early as 1995, largely due to its booming economy.[183] Poland became a member of the Visegrád Group in 1991,[184] and joined NATO in 1999.[185] Poles then voted to join the European Union in a referendum in June 2003,[186] with Poland becoming a full member on 1 May 2004, following the consequent enlargement of the organization.[187]

Flowers in front of the Presidential Palace following the death of Poland's top government officials in a plane crash over Smolensk in Russia, 10 April 2010

Poland joined the Schengen Area in 2007, as a result of which, the country's borders with other member states of the European Union have been dismantled, allowing for full freedom of movement within most of the European Union.[188] On 10 April 2010, the President of Poland Lech Kaczyński, along with 89 other high-ranking Polish officials died in a plane crash near Smolensk, Russia.[189]

In 2011, the ruling Civic Platform won parliamentary elections.[190] In 2014, the Prime Minister of PolandDonald Tusk, was chosen to be President of the European Council, and resigned as prime minister.[191] The 2015 and 2019 elections were won by the conservative Law and Justice Party (PiS) led by Jarosław Kaczyński,[192][193] resulting in increased Euroscepticism and increased friction with the European Union.[194][195] In December 2017, Mateusz Morawiecki was sworn in as the new Prime Minister, succeeding Beata Szydlo, in office since 2015. President Andrzej Duda, supported by Law and Justice party, was narrowly re-elected in the 2020 presidential election.[196] Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2022 led to over half a million Ukrainian refugees arriving in Poland, with very long queues at border crossings; Poland granted temporary protection to all refugees fleeing the conflict.[197]


John Paul brought the message - here to Warsaw -  in his first trip back home as pope in June of 1979. 

It was a message about the power, the power of faith, the power of resilience, the power of the people. In the face of a cruel and brutal system of government, it was a message that helped end the Soviet repression in the central land in Eastern Europe 30 years ago. [see Polish history above]

It was a message that [we will] overcome the cruelty and brutality of this unjust war. When Pope John Paul brought that message in 1979, the Soviet Union ruled with an iron fist behind an "Iron Curtain". Then a year later, the solidarity movement took hold in Poland. While I know he couldn't be here tonight, we're all grateful in America and around the world for Lech Walesa. [Applause] It reminds me of that phrase from the philosopher Kierkegaard, "Faith sees best in the dark." And they were dark moments. [ see Kierkegaard above]

Ten years later, the Soviet Union collapsed and Poland and Central and Eastern Europe would soon be free.

Nothing about that battle for freedom was simple or easy. It was a long, painful slog.

Fought over not days and months but years and decades. But, we emerged anew in the great battle for freedom. A battle between democracy and autocracy.
Between liberty and repression. Between a rules-based order and one governed by brute force. In this battle, we need to be clear-eyed. This battle will not be won in days or months either. We need to steel ourselves of a long fight ahead.

Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, Mr. Mayor, members of the parliament, distinguished guests, and the people of Poland, and - I suspect some people of Ukraine that are here. We are [applause], we are gathered here at the royal castle in this city that holds the sacred place in the history of not only of Europe but human kind's unending search for freedom. [ "royal castle" Warsaw, Poland ]

For generations, Warsaw has stood where liberty has been challenged and liberty has prevailed.

In fact, it was here - in Warsaw - when a young refugee who fled her home country from Czechoslovakia was under Soviet domination, came back to speak and stand in solidarity with dissidence.

Her name was Madeleine Korbel Albright.
 She became one of the most ardent supporters of democracy in the world. She was a friend with whom I served. America's first woman Secretary of State.

She passed away three days ago. She fought her whole life for central democratic principles.

And now - in the perennial struggle for democracy and freedom, Ukraine and its people are in the front lines.

Fighting to save their nation and their brave resistance is part of a larger fight for essential democratic principles that unite all free people.

 The rule of law, fair and free elections, the freedom to speak, to write and to assemble.

 The freedom to worship as one chooses. The freedom of the press. These principles are essential in a free society. [Applause] 

But they have always, they have always - been under siege. They have always been embattled.

 Every generation has had to defeat democracy's moral foes.

 That's the way of the world, for the world is imperfect, as we know. Where the appetites and ambitions of a few forever seek to dominate the lives and liberty of many.

My message - to the people of Ukraine - is a message I delivered today to Ukraine's foreign minister and defense minister, who I believe are here tonight.

We stand with you. Period! [Applause]

Today's fighting in Kyiv and Melitopol and Kharkiv are the latest battle in a long struggle. Hungary, 1956. Poland, 1956, and then again, 1981. Czechoslovakia,1968.

Soviet tanks crushed democratic uprisings, but the resistance continued
 - until finally in 1989, the Berlin Wall and all the walls of Soviet domination, they fell. They fell! And the people prevailed.

But the battle for democracy could not conclude, and did not conclude with the end of the Cold War.

Over the last 30 years, the forces of autocracy have revived all across the globe.

Its hallmarks are familiar ones -- contempt for the rule of law, contempt for democratic freedom, contempt for the truth itself.


Today, Russia has strangled democracy and sought to do so elsewhere - not only in his homeland.

 Under false claims of ethnic solidarity, there's [they have] invalidated neighboring nations.

 Putin has the gall to say he's 'denazifying' Ukraine. It's a lie. It's just cynical, he knows that - and, it's also obscene.

President Zelenskyy was democratically elected. He's Jewish. His father's family was wiped out in the Nazi Holocaust.

And,  Putin has the audacity, like all "autocrats" before him, to believe that "might will make right".

In my own country, a former president - named Abraham Lincoln - voiced the opposing spirit to save our union in the midst of the Civil War.

He said let us have faith that "right makes might".
Right makes might. 

Today, let us have that faith again. [Applause]

   Let us resolve - to put the strength of democracies into action -  to thwart the designs of autocracy.

Let us remember - that the test of this moment - is the test of all time.

 A criminal [ "Putin"] wants to portray "NATO enlargement" as an "imperial project" aimed at destabilizing Russia.

Nothing is further from the truth. NATO is a "defensive alliance". It has never sought the demise of Russia.

 In the lead up to the current crisis, the United States and NATO worked for months to engage Russia to avert war.

 I met with him in person, talked to him many times on the phone. [ "Biden" "Putin" "meeting" "June" "2021"  image ]

Time and again, we offered real diplomacy and concrete proposals to strengthen European security, enhance transparency, build confidence on all sides.
  ( But Putin and Russia met each of the proposals with disinterest in any negotiation, with lies and ultimatums. ) 

Russia was bent on violence from the start. ... I know - not all of you believed me - and us - when we kept saying, they are going to cross the border, they are going to attack.
 Repeatedly,  he [Putin]] asserted we had no interest in war, guaranteed he would not move.
 Repeatedly saying he [Putin]] would not invade Ukraine.
  Repeatedly saying Russian troops along the border were there for "training".   -
All 180,000 of them.

There's simply no justification - or provocation - for Russia's choice of war.

It's an example, one of the oldest human impulses, using "brute force" and "disinformation" to satisfy a craving for absolute power and control.

 It's nothing less than a direct challenge to the rule-based international order established since the end of World War II.

 And,  it threatens to return to decades of war that ravaged Europe before the international rule-based order was put in place.

We cannot go back to that. We cannot.

 The gravity of the threat is why the response of "the West" has been so swift and so powerful and so unified, unprecedented and overwhelming.
   Swift and punishing costs are the only thing that are going to get Russia to change its course.

 Within days of his invasion, the West has moved jointly with sanctions to damage Russia's economy.

Russia's Central Bank [target ]  is now blocked from global financial systems, denying Kremlin's access to the war fund [ Iran Russia ] that's stashed around the globe.

(   [ 55° 45′ 47″ N,  37° 37′ 17″ E ]  global financial systems > https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_financial_system  )

We [ the West, the U.S. ]  have aimed at the heart of Russia's economy by stopping the imports of Russian energy to the United States.

To date, the United States has sanctioned 140 Russian oligarchs and their family members, seizing their ill-begotten gains, their yachts, their luxury apartments, their mansions. We've sanctioned more than 400 Russian government officials, including key "architects of this war". These officials and oligarchs have reaped enormous benefit from the corruption connected to the Kremlin. And now they have to share in the pain.   [  "architects" of Russia Ukraine war  ]

The private sector has acted as well. Over 400 private multinational companies have pulled out of doing business in Russia. Left Russia completely. From oil companies to McDonald's. As a result of these unprecedented sanctions, the ruble almost is immediately reduced to rubble. The Russian economy -- that's true, by the way, it takes about 200 rubles to equal $1.

The economy is on track to be cut in half in the coming years. It was ranked, Russia's economy was ranked the 11th biggest economy in the world before this invasion. It will soon not even rank among the top 20 in the world.

Taken together [applause] these "economic sanctions", a new kind of economic statecraft with the power to inflict damage that rivals military might.

These international sanctions are sapping Russian strength, its ability to replenish its military, and its ability to project power.

And it's Putin, it is Vladimir Putin who is to blame. Period.

At the same time, alongside these economic sanctions, the Western world has come together to provide for the people of Ukraine with incredible levels of military, economic, humanitarian assistance.

In the years before the invasion, we, America, had sent over $650 million, before they crossed the border, in weapons to Ukraine, including anti-air and anti-armor equipment.

 Since the invasion, America has committed another $1.35 billion in weapons and ammunition.

 And,  thanks to the courage and bravery of the Ukrainian people, the equipment we've sent - and our colleagues - have sent have been used to devastating effect to defend Ukrainian land and air space.

Our allies and partners have stepped up as well.

But - as I've made clear, American forces are in Europe -- not in Europe to engage in conflict with Russian forces.

 American forces are here to defend NATO allies. Yesterday I met with the troops that are serving alongside our Polish allies to bolster NATO's front line defenses.

The reason we want to make clear is their movement on Ukraine -- don't even think about moving on one single inch of NATO territory.

 We have sacred obligation. We have a sacred obligation -  under [ NATO]  Article 5 -  to defend each and every inch of NATO territory with the full force of our collective power.

And earlier today,  I visited your "national stadium" [ Warsaw Poland ] , where thousands of Ukrainian refugees are now trying to answer the toughest questions a human can ask. My God, what is going to happen to me?   What is going to happen to my family?   I saw tears in many of the mothers' eyes as I embraced them. Their young children, their young children, not sure whether to smile or cry.

I didn't have to speak the language - or understand the language -  to feel the emotion in their eyes, the way they gripped my hand, little kids hung on to my leg,
 praying with a desperate hope that all this is temporary.

 Apprehension that they may be perhaps forever away from their homes. Almost a debilitating sadness that this is happening all over again.

But, I was also struck by the generosity of the people of Warsaw -- for that matter, all the Polish people -- for the depths of their compassion, their willingness to reach out [applause], for opening their hearts.

I was saying to the mayor, they were opening their hearts and their homes simply to help.

I also want to thank my friend, the great American chef Jose Andres, and his team for help feeding those who are yearning to be free. But helping these refugees is not something Poland or any other nation should carry alone. All the world's democracies have a responsibility to help. All of them. And the people of Ukraine can count on the United States to meet its responsibility. I have announced two days ago, we will welcome 100,000 Ukrainian refugees. We already have 8,000 a week coming to the United States of other nationalities.

We will provide nearly $300 million of humanitarian assistance, providing tens of thousands of tons of food, water, medicine and other basic supplies.

In Brussels, I announced the United States is prepared to provide more than $1 billion in additional humanitarian aid. The World Food Programme told us that despite significant obstacles, at least some relief is getting to major cities in Ukraine. [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Food_Programme

But not Metripol -- no, excuse me -- not Mariupol because Russian forces are blocking relief supplies.

   "Pro-Russian Ukrainians"  - SOURCE:  https://time.com/11005/many-ukrainians-want-russia-to-invade/ 

Many Ukrainians Want Russia To Invade

IMAGE: A woman waves a Russian flag as armed servicemen wait near Russian army vehicles outside a Ukrainian border guard post in the Crimean town of Balaclava

   March 1, 2014. Baz Ratner—REUTERS
 MARCH 1, 2014 10:50 PM EST  ... To many in Ukraine, a full-scale Russian military invasion would feel like a liberation. On Saturday, across the country’s eastern and southern provinces, hundreds of thousands of people gathered to welcome the Kremlin’s talk of "protecting pro-Russian Ukrainians" against the revolution that brought a new government to power last week.
So far, that protection has come in the form of Russian military control of the southern region of Crimea, but on Saturday, Russian President Vladimir Putin got parliamentary approval for a broad military intervention in Ukraine. As that news spread, locals in at least four major cities in the east of Ukraine climbed onto the roofs of government buildings and replaced the Ukrainian flag with the Russian tricolor.  
(PHOTOS: Crisis in Crimea: Unrest in Russian Stronghold)

For the most part, what drove so many people to renounce their allegiance to Ukraine was a mix of pride and fear, the latter fueled in part by misinformation from Moscow. The most apparent deception came on Saturday morning, when the Russian Foreign Ministry put out a statement - accusing the new government in Kiev of staging a “treacherous provocation” on the Crimean peninsula.

It claimed that “unidentified armed men” had been sent from Kiev to seize the headquarters of the Interior Ministry police in Crimea. But thanks to the “decisive actions of self-defense battalions,” the statement said, the attack had been averted with just a few casualties. This statement turned out to be without any basis in fact.

Igor Avrutsky, who was the acting Interior Minister of Crimea during the alleged assault, told TIME the following afternoon that it never happened. “Everything was calm,” he says. Throughout the night, pro-Russian militiamen armed with sticks and shields had been defending the Crimean Interior Ministry against the revolutionaries, and one of the militia leaders, Oleg Krivoruchenko, also says there was no assault on the building. “People were coming and going as normal,” he says.

But the claims -  coming from Moscow were still enough to spread panic in eastern and southern Ukraine.

 On Saturday, pro-Russian activists in the Crimean capital of Simferopol staged a massive demonstration in the city, calling on residents to rally against the “Nazi authorities” who had come to power in Kiev.

  “What’s happening in Ukraine is terrifying,” says one of the organizers of the march, Evgenia Dobrynya. “We’re in a situation now where the country is ruled by terrorists and radicals.”
https://crimearf.info/yalta-was-scrambled-by-the-deputies-of-the-state-council-of-crimea-what-conclusions-did-you-draw-from-what-you-saw-and-heard/  ]

That is the picture of Ukraine’s new government propagated in the Russian media, the main source of information for millions of people in eastern and southern Ukraine. For months, Russian officials and television networks have painted the "revolutionaries" as a fascist cabal intent on stripping ethnic Russians of their rights.

Much of the coverage has amounted to blatant scaremongering. The key posts in the new government, including the interim President and Prime Minister, have gone to pro-Western liberals and moderates, and they have pledged to guarantee the rights of all ethnic minorities. But some of their actions have given Russia plenty of excuses to accuse them of doing the opposite.

Within two days of taking power, the "revolutionary leaders" passed a bill revoking the rights of Ukraine’s regions to make Russian an official language alongside Ukrainian.

That outraged the Russian-speaking half of the country, and the ban was quickly lifted. But the damage was done.

With that one ill-considered piece of legislation, the new leaders had convinced millions of "ethnic Russians" that a wave of repression awaited them.

 So, it was no surprise on Friday when a livid mob in Crimea attacked a liberal lawmaker who came to reason with them. Struggling to make his case over the screaming throng,
Petro Poroshenko was chased back to his car amid cries of “fascist!”

Making matters worse has been the role of nationalist parties in the new government, including a small but influential group of right-wing radicals known as Pravy Sektor (Right Sector), which embodies some of the greatest fears of Ukraine’s ethnic Russian minority. Its leader, Dmitro Yarosh, has openly referred to Russia as the “centuries-old enemy of Ukraine,” and has spent years training a small paramilitary force to fight what he calls “Russian imperialist ambitions.”

In the past week, [ circa March 1, 2014 ] Ukraine’s new leaders have been scrambling to figure out what to do with Yarosh. His role in the revolution was too significant for them to write him off. Having suffered dozens of casualties in fighting off police during deadly clashes in Kiev last month, his militia members are idolized as heroes by many supporters of the revolution across the country. “It’s a real problem,” says the pro-Western lawmaker Hrihory Nemiriya, whose fellow members of the Fatherland party now hold the interim presidency and premiership. “Right Sector people are very popular, but they are not in the government.”

Yarosh has, however, been offered top positions in Ukraine’s security structures. Zoryan Shkiryak, a revolutionary lawmaker involved in the negotiations over Yarosh’s role in the government, says the right-wing militant was in the running to become deputy prime minister overseeing the security services. “That was on the table,” Shkiryak tells TIME. After much debate, Yarosh was offered the role of deputy head of the National Security Council, but rejected it as beneath him. In his only interview with the Western press, Yarosh told TIME last month that he planned to turn Right Sector into a political party and run for office. “He could run for president,” adds Nemiriya.

Even that possibility has been enough to horrify the Russians in the east and the south, and Moscow has played on those fears to claim that Nazis are coming to power. On Saturday, when Putin asked his upper house of parliament to allow an invasion of Ukraine, the lawmakers had no trouble coming up with a justification. “What’s happening in Ukraine is a true mutiny, a plague of brown-shirts,” said one of the senators, Nikolai Ryzhkov.

In the Crimean capital of Simferopol, that logic took hold. Thousands of people marched through the streets of the city on Saturday carrying enormous Russian flags and chanting “Fascism will not pass!” Dobrynya, the organizer, said her greatest concern was the role of Right Sector in the new government. “We’re supposed to accept these radicals deciding who is going to rule Ukraine? That can’t happen. So thank God we have these wonderful guardians now,” she said, gesturing toward the battalion of Russian marines who were guarding the Crimean parliament building. In four other cities of eastern Ukraine, major demonstrations called for Russia to send similar contingents to protect them from the “fascists.” Now, with the approval of his obedient legislature, Putin seems to ready to oblige, surely comforted by the fact that cheering crowds would come out to greet the Russian tanks if they do roll over the border into eastern Ukraine.  ..."

 But we'll not cease our efforts to get humanitarian relief wherever it is needed in Ukraine and for the people who've made it out of Ukraine. Notwithstanding the brutality of Vladimir Putin, let there be no doubt that this war has already been a strategic failure for Russia already. Having lost children myself, I know that's no solace to the people who've lost family but he, Putin, thought Ukrainians would roll over and not fight. Not much of a student of history. Instead Russian forces have met their match with brave and stiff Ukrainian resistance. Rather than breaking Ukrainian resolve, Russia's brutal tactics have strengthened the resolve. Rather than driving NATO apart, the West is now stronger and more united than it's ever been.

Russia wanted less of a NATO presence on its border but now he has a stronger presence, a larger presence with over 100,000 American troops here along with all the other members of NATO. In fact, Russia has managed to cause something I'm sure he never intended. The democracies of the world are revitalized with purpose and unity found in months that we've once taken years to accomplish.

It's not only Russia's actions in Ukraine that are reminding us of democracy's blessing. It's our own country, his own country, the Kremlin, it's jailing protesters. Two hundred thousand people who have allegedly already left. There's a brain drain leaving Russia. Shutting down independent news. State media is all propaganda. Blocking the image of civilian targets, mass graves, starvation tactics of the Russian forces in Ukraine.

Is it any wonder as I said that 200,000 Russians have all left their country in one month. A remarkable brain drain in such a short period of time. Which brings me to my message to the Russian people. I worked with Russian leaders for decades. I sat across the negotiating table going all the way back to Soviet Alexei Kosygin to talk arms control at the height of the Cold War. I've always spoken directly and honestly to you, the Russian people. Let me say this, if you're able to listen. You, the Russian people, are not our enemy. I refuse to believe that you welcome the killing of innocent children and grandparents, or that you accept hospitals, schools, maternity wards and for God sake's being pummeled with Russian missiles and bombs. Or cities being surrounded so that civilians cannot flee. Supplies cut off and attempting to starve Ukrainians into submission.

Millions of families are being driven from their homes, including half of all Ukraine's children. These are not the actions of a great nation. Of all people, you, the Russian people, as well as all people across Europe still have the memory of being in a similar situation in the late '30s and '40s. Situation in World War II still fresh in the minds of many grandparents in the region. Whatever your generation experienced, whether it experienced the siege of Leningrad or heard about it from your parents and grandparents. Train stations overflowing with terrified families fleeing their homes. Nights sheltering in basements and cellars. Mornings sifting through the rubble in your homes. These are not memories of the past. Not anymore. Because it's exactly what the Russian army is doing in Ukraine right now.

March 26, 2022, just days before we're at the 21 -- you were a 21st century nation, with hopes and dreams that people all over the world have for themselves and their family. Now, Vladimir Putin's aggression have cut you, the Russian people, off from the rest of the world, and it's taking Russia back to the 19th century. This is not who you are. This is not the future you deserve for your families and your children. I'm telling you the truth, this war is not worthy of you, the Russian people. Putin can and must end this war. The American people will stand with you, and the brave citizens of Ukraine who want peace.

My message to the rest of Europe, this new battle for freedom has already made a few things crystal clear. First, Europe must end its dependence on Russian fossil fuels. And we, the United States will help. [Applause] That's why just yesterday in Brussels I announced the plan with the president of the European Commission to get Europe through the immediate energy crisis. Over the long-term, as a matter of economic security and national security and for the survivability of the planet, we all need to move as quickly as possible to clean, renewable energy. And we'll work together to help to get that done so that the days of any nation being subject to the whims of a tyrant for its energy needs are over. They must end. They must end.

And second, we have to fight the corruption coming from the Kremlin to give the Russian people a fair chance. And finally, most urgently, we maintain absolute unity, we must, among the world's democracies. It's not enough to speak with rhetorical flourish of ennobling words of democracy, of freedom, of quality, and liberty. All of us, including here in Poland, must do the hard work of democracy each and every day -- my country as well. That's why [applause], that's why I came to Europe again this week with a clear and determined message for NATO, for the G7, for the European Union, for all freedom-loving nations -- we must commit now to be in this fight for the long haul. We must remain unified today and tomorrow and the day after. And for the years and decades to come. It will not be easy. There will be costs. But it is a price we have to pay because the darkness that drives autocracy is ultimately no match for the flame of liberty that lights the souls of free people everywhere.

Time and again history shows that. It's from the darkness moments that the greatest progress follows. And history shows this is the task of our time, the task of this generation. Let's remember the hammer blow that brought down the Berlin Wall, the might that lifted the Iron Curtain were not the words of a single leader, it was the people of Europe, who for decades fought to free themselves. Their sheer bravery opened the border between Austria and Hungary for the Pan-European Picnic. They joined hands for the Baltic Way. They stood for solidarity here in Poland. And together it was an unmistakable and undeniable force of the people that the Soviet Union could not withstand. And we're seeing it once again today for the brave Ukrainian people showing that their power of many is greater than the will of any one dictator.

So in this hour, let the words of Pope John Paul burn as brightly today. Never ever give up hope. Never doubt. Never tire. Never become discouraged. Be not afraid! [Applause]

A dictator bent on rebuilding an empire will never erase a people's love for liberty. Brutality will never grind down their will to be free. Ukraine will never be a victory for Russia, for free people refuse to live in a world of hopelessness and darkness. We will have a different future, a brighter future, rooted in democracy and principle, hope and light. Of decency and dignity and freedom and possibilities.

  For God's sake, this man ( Putin ) cannot remain in power.  

God bless you all. And may God defend our freedom, and may God protect our troops. [Applause] Thank you for your patience.

Thank you. Thank you.

< end >

  TITLE: Russia Is Facing a "Tech Worker" Exodus ...  

With founders and developers scrambling for the exit, the Russian tech scene is taking a major hit.

ALEKS BOUGHT A one-way ticket out of Russia on February 21, right after Vladimir Putin recognized the breakaway Ukrainian territories of Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states. A software developer working remotely for a European tech firm, Aleks—who asked that his full name be withheld—says that was a sign that worse things were coming. “I thought, Putin won't stop there,” he says. “He'd probably try to take Ukraine by force. Which is, well, basically what happened.”

Confronted with the likelihood of crippling sanctions, a plummeting ruble, and a country turning aggressively inwards, Aleks made it to the airport with his wife and hopped on a plane to Georgia, where he has some relatives. He was among the first Russian technology workers to make a run for neighboring countries at the outset of the Ukrainian war, but he soon realized he would by no means be the last. Over the past few weeks, throngs of fellow Russian techies have joined him in Tbilisi, making rents soar. “The property market is empty. You can't find anything, and if you can, it will cost you three or two times more than it used to cost a month ago,” he says. But for the time being, Aleks’s future is there. Going back to Russia scares him too much.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has precipitated a humanitarian crisis of unprecedented magnitude, with the displacement of more than 10 million Ukrainians fleeing their country, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. But tens of thousands are also leaving Russia, worried that Putin’s wartime regime will destroy their livelihoods, career prospects, and individual freedoms.

Many members of this self-exiled crowd are technology workers. Because of their interconnectedness with the global digital economy, they were quick to feel the pain from sanctions and the departure of Western technology companies, and they have an easier time making a living from their laptops regardless of location.

According to RAEK, a Russian technology trade group, between 50,000 and 70,000 tech workers have already fled Russia, and 70,000 to 100,000 more could leave in April. With flights to the West canceled, they have wended their way to countries where Russian citizens can still travel visa-free.

Konstantin Vinogradov, the London-based Russian-born principal of global VC firm Runa Capital, has teamed up with other industry figures to create a “talent pool” website that helps anti-war technology workers from Russia, Belarus (which is supporting Moscow’s military maneuvers), and Ukraine find suitable jobs elsewhere.

“Mostly they are software engineers and data scientists. There are plenty of people from large Russian tech organizations like Yandex, VK, Sberbank,” Vinogradov says. “But there are plenty from smaller ones.”

Around 2,000 people have entered the pool, and Turkey, Armenia, and Georgia are the top destinations for those who have already relocated. A New York Times article says the Armenian government estimates that some 80,000 Russians have entered the country since the start of the war on February 24, and 20,000 of them are still residing there; the Georgian minister for economic affairs put that number at between 20,000 and 25,000, which he said was similar to 2020 figures. Many of these people plan to move elsewhere: 90 percent of the participants in Vinogradov’s talent pool indicated the UK, Germany, and the Netherlands as their preferred final destinations.

Vinogradov says that some of the Russian tech workers he has spoken to have left Russia because they are opposed to the war and to Putin on moral grounds. “You can't ignore politics anymore, because it's not even about politics: It’s about ethics,” he says.

... But the descent of Russia to the status of global pariah has made it harder for technology workers to do their jobs. As companies including Microsoft, Intel, Apple, Netflix, and Meta’s Facebook and Instagram have pulled out of or limited their services to Russia—or, in some cases, have been pushed out by Moscow itself—doing business as usual has grown harder by the day.

Jacob Udodov, CEO of the Latvian team-collaboration software company Bordio, employs five Russians, two of whom have relocated from the country so far. He says that he had to provide all his Russia-based staffers with VPNs to allow them to access some services, and to make sure they’ll be able to keep working in case Russia decides to heavily censor the internet. Bordio has already had to adjust, because it runs social media campaigns for European customers, and Udodov says Russian employees became unable to work on those projects after Facebook prevented all Russia-based accounts from posting ads, on March 4. (On March 21, a Russian judge declared that Facebook’s parent company, Meta, was carrying out extremist activities.)

Paying Russian-based employees has also become harder due to Russia’s exclusion from the international payment network, SWIFT, Udodov says. “We tried several banks before we found the one which sent the money through,” he says. ”I'm not sure it’s going to keep supporting these payments to Russia—I'm not sure about April’s paycheck.”

Udodov pays his staff in dollars, which has somewhat cushioned them from the financial toll of the ruble’s 30 percent crash in value since the start of the war.  Other Russian tech employees, whose salaries have options that are tied to companies' share prices, may be faring worse.

According to one Russian technology worker who has also left the country, and who asked not to be named, such a brutal, sudden hit on their livelihood is the last straw that convinced many Russian tech workers to pack it in. “For a long time there was this kind of balance where the state did horrible things, but if you didn't interact with it, if you didn't go into the areas where the state claimed dominance, you were more or less left alone. So we don't touch politics—they don't touch our money, we get to build our assets and live our lives,” they say. “By waging this war, they went into our sphere. They devalued our money, they devalued our assets, they made everything we invested in illiquid and cheap. That was a wake-up call.”

The ongoing crackdown on free speech—with Moscow going as far as outlawing calling the war a “war”—and the likely state capture of any remaining technology companies were also spurs for leaving, the tech worker says. “When the Russian state turns militarist, bad things happen to Russians,” they say.

In 2019 the International Data Corporation estimated the value of the Russian IT industry at $24.8 billion. The sector employed 1.3 million people and accounted for 2.7 percent of the country’s GDP, roughly as much as the energy supply sector. It is hard to gauge what impact the tech exodus will ultimately have. Even if startup founders and elite developers leave, big Russian tech companies such as Yandex, email provider Mail.ru, or social network VK might benefit from the disappearance of competitors, and from providing replacements for technologies that are now unavailable because of Western sanctions. Those companies will also take advantage of an upsurge of laid-off tech workers who decide not to flee because of personal reasons, lack of language or coveted coding skills, or ideological alignment with the regime.

“Russia is a big country, a well-educated country,” says Sergey Sanovich, a research associate at the Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton. “Those workers will be replaced by people who are less politically involved. The replacements will be less talented, less high-quality, and less oppositional.”

Putin’s government has signaled that it regards technology workers as a strategic asset, and it has tried to stem exits by introducing new financial incentives for tech companies and announcing that IT workers would be exempt from conscription. Vinogradov says that, paradoxically, those promises had the “opposite effect” on some tech workers.

“They perceived that there would be a massive draft for the army and they needed to relocate immediately,” he says. Exiting Russia is still possible, as long as one can find a flight, but press reports suggest that Russians who leave the country are facing aggressive questioning by border officials regarding their motives.

Konstantin Siniushin is a Latvia-based tech investor who in the early phases of the crisis helped organize charter flights to Armenia for 300 Russian startup workers. He says that in the long run, Russia’s tech sector will split into two parts: Those happy to cater to the internal market, and those who “will write letters to their friends who have left and constantly ask how to resettle abroad.”

Right now, those who have left are still working out what their future will look like. In Tbilisi, Aleks says, Russian tech workers have not really coalesced into a real community yet.

“People are still in a panic. We don't even have our savings anymore, and opening new bank accounts is hard.” he says. “When things become a little more calm, we'll probably have a proper community here—but not yet.”

Updated 3/23/2022 11:00 AM ET: This piece has been updated to clarify Vinogradov's claims about where those in the talent pool have relocated to.

  dirty little Russian < GOOGLE >  [  Putin's "PRESTIGIOUS" Russian Soldier  ]

KING Vladimir V. Putin DEMONSTRATES HOW IT'S DONE! ... and, suffers the same fate as: Anwar Sadat [ assassination ]


 SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KMGi_Group

"... KMGi Group

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

On February 27, 2022, Konanykhin promised in a Facebook post to pay a $1,000,000 bounty for the arrest of Vladimir Putin for war crimes. The site removed his post later on. [60]
 "...  Alex Konanykhin February 27 at 1:13 PM · 
I promise to pay $1,000,000 to the officer(s) who, complying with their constitutional duty, arrests Putin as a war criminal under Russian and international laws. Putin is not the Russian president as he came to power as the result of a special operation of blowing up an apartment building in Russia, then violated the Constitution by eliminating free elections and murdering his opponents. As an ethnic Russian and a Russia citizen, I see it as my moral duty to facilitate the denazification of Russia. I will continue my assistance to Ukraine in its heroic efforts to withstand the onslaught of Putin's Orda.  ..."