The Polish government’s decision to make accusations of involvement in the Holocaust against its people illegal is historical revisionism of the worst kind, suggests The New York Times' editorial board. Poles’ victimhood to Nazi atrocities alongside Jews is indisputable, but so is their role in anti-Jewish pogroms and killings. The country must come to terms with its involvement in these crimes. Criminalizing the discussion of them is a violation of free speech as well as a worrying attempt to re-write history. This decision reminds of autocratic regimes twisting the truth to suit their interests.
Poland is right to clarify its limited role in the Holocaust, and the backlash against it has been excessive, asserts Oded Even Or of Haaretz. Polish people did have a hand in the Holocaust, but this came under a Nazi-controlled government. Their people also showed great heroism in protecting Jews from persecution. In fact, 6,500 Poles were labeled as “righteous among nations,” more than any other nationality. The country’s role in the Holocaust is two-sided, outrightly condemning it for what happened on its soil is wrong.