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Tags: poland | antoni macierewicz | trump | nato | warsaw

Poland Advances Democracy, Security Under Defense Minister Macierewicz

Poland Advances Democracy, Security Under Defense Minister Macierewicz
U.S. Defence Secretary Jim Mattis (R) speaks with Polish Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz prior to a meeting within a NATO Defence Council meeting at the NATO Headquarters in Brussels on June 29, 2017. (Virginia Mayo/AFP/Getty Images)

Edmund Janniger By Wednesday, 19 July 2017 10:29 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Poland has been upgrading its institutions as it advances its global influence. Under the leadership of Antoni Macierewicz, Poland’s Minister of National Defense, Poland has doubled the size of her armed forces, maintains a defense budget that meets and exceeds 2 percent of GDP, established the Territorial Defense — a new branch of the military — and is acquiring the Patriot system from the United States.

Minister Macierewicz additionally signed a momentous partnership agreement between Poland and Ukraine, enhancing defense capabilities and armaments sector cooperation. Thanks to Minister Macierewicz, Poland will soon increase defense expenditures to 2.5 percent of GDP.

Perhaps most notably, Minister Macierewicz was a key architect of the Warsaw NATO Summit, resulting in the forward presence of the U.S. and of NATO on the Eastern Flank. Moreover, Poland was recently elected as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Poland’s court system is also shedding its old communist rules in favor of those of an advanced democracy.

As U.S. President Donald Trump proclaimed commencing his July 6 Warsaw speech to the Polish people, “Together, let us all fight like the Poles — for family, for freedom, for country, and for God.” It is in that spirit that a bulwark of freedom and a beacon of democracy such as Poland may choose to reform its justice system. The proposed changes draw upon the best Western models. In virtually all democratic systems, the selection of judges relies upon the voice of the citizens, with varying degrees of directness.

In the United States, federal judges are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. Law and Justice lawmakers have proposed that the influence of the ultra-powerful National Council of the Judiciary on appointments be curbed, replacing it with a model similar to that in other advanced democracies.

Certain influence groups, including the so-called “Committee for the Defense of Democracy” (KOD), aim to disrupt democratic institutions and the rule of law, working hand-in-hand with the Kremlin propaganda system. It is not surprising that Civic Platform leaders, such as former Deputy Prime Minister Jan Vincent-Rostowski, boast of their positions within the Russian government.

The Polish people have suffered two atrocious occupations when Germany and its Russian ally divided Poland to begin World War II. Recognizing this, Minister Macierewicz, a heroic human rights activist and former political prisoner, knows the importance of national unity, fostering the values and traditions enshrined in the Tanakh and the Bible and leveraging the strength of the Polish people, as well as those of our international partners.

Most recently, some in the left-of-center media establishment have sought to spread disinformation about Polish military intelligence. The Military Information Services (WSI), a formidable vestige of Communist rule, maintained ties to Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate, engaging in iniquitous and often criminal activities. WSI existed in infamy until it was liquidated — as resolved by the Polish Parliament — by Minister Macierewicz, then at the helm of the Verification Commission. Subsequently, Minister Macierewicz founded new intelligence agencies, namely the Military Intelligence Service (SWW) and the Military Counterintelligence Service (SKW). SWW and SKW have proven to be highly-successful as well as entirely immune from foreign influence.

Colonel Oleg Gordievsky, the former KGB London bureau chief and an MI6 secret agent, noted: “The publication of the report of the verification of the military special services of Poland is compared by Russian intelligence officers who went over to the West to victory, which Piłsudski won against the Bolsheviks in 1920. Why? With the strength of nearly 400 pages of the report Russian agents were defeated. The intricately constructed web of influence built by Moscow for over 40 years was torn apart. The report makes it clear that agents trained by the Soviet Union, whose heir and de facto continuation is the Russian Federation, are 'burnt,' that is disclosed and prevented from operating.”

Stratfor, the renowned geopolitical intelligence firm, observed: “The move both removes Soviet influence and consolidates the twins’ power in the government. The release of the WSI report is one of the largest and most decisive moves along these lines. By naming people in the WSI who are connected to Soviet intelligence, Kaczyński ensures their names will forever be known for — alleged or real — Soviet ties. The move undermines the entire structure of the WSI and all of its former personnel, ensuring that it and those attached to it can never recover.”

It is likely more than a fluke or mere coincidence that some are attacking the Ministry of National Defense following the signing of the breakthrough memorandum with the United States on the acquisition of the Patriot system, undercutting certain interest groups in the defense industry. In a similar case in 2016, the District Court of Warszawa-Mokotów ruled that Agora SA, the publisher of the leftist “Gazeta Wyborcza,” apologize to Minister Macierewicz for promulgating false information. Notably, “Gazeta Wyborcza" has so far not observed the court’s verdict. Poland’s Public Prosecutor is currently looking into possible criminal charges regarding the latest series of disinformation.

Many will perhaps most vividly remember that it was Minister Macierewicz who in 1992, as Minister of Internal Affairs, spearheaded the de-communization of Poland. Following an investigation of national leaders of all parties, by resolution of the Parliament, Minister Macierewicz delivered a list of those who were identified in surviving records as collaborators of the secret police in the Polish People’s Republic. This is undoubtedly the root of attacks by “Gazeta Wyborcza," a publication vigorously defending Soviet-era dictators Wojciech Jaruzelski and Czesław Kiszczak.

As we celebrate three important sentinels in 2017 and 2018, we remember that Poland and the U.S. are nations that have withstood oppression and continue to chart their own courses. The Polish and American people will continue to decide their own destiny whether the socialist old guard and left-of-center pundits like it or not.

Edmund Janniger is the Director of the International Security Forum, an institution under the patronage of the Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Poland. His work at the Ministry of National Defense encompasses academic affairs and global engagement. Mr. Janniger holds the record as the youngest sub-cabinet official in Poland’s history. In the Parliamentary Office, Mr. Janniger has been the Deputy Chief of Staff to Minister Antoni Macierewicz and, during the 2015 elections, was the Deputy Campaign Manager for Law and Justice in the 10th District. Mr. Janniger has a proven track record directing complex political and policy-related matters. He holds an adjunct appointment at Marconi University, and was elected by the full Rutgers University Senate to three terms on its Executive Committee. Mr. Janniger splits his time between the Warsaw and New York metropolitan areas, has one young dog, and is an avid hiker. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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Poland has been upgrading its institutions as it advances its global influence.
poland, antoni macierewicz, trump, nato, warsaw
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 10:29 AM
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