Poland worried by deadly Ukraine protests
February 26, 1914
The deadly violence in Ukraine is drawing huge concern in ex-communist Poland, itself no stranger to anti-government protests and a leading proponent of its neighbor’s entry into the European Union.
“The situation in Ukraine is very reminiscent of Poland right before martial law,” said Zbigniew Bujak, who was denied entry into Ukraine on Wednesday for his support of the opposition.
Bujak was a leader of the freedom-fighting trade union Solidarity that Poland’s last communist leader, General Wojciech Jaruzelski, tried to crush in 1981 by ordering the military crackdown.
“In the days of Solidarity, the (Polish) government also fired at people,” added Dawid Dabrowski, a Warsaw security guard in his thirties. “But Poles weren’t as divided as the Ukrainians,” he said of the days when 10 million Poles joined Solidarity virtually overnight.
“Western Ukraine wants EU entry while the east says no,” he added.
“The regime has passed the point of no return,” wrote Polish historian Adam Michnik, editor-in-chief of the Gazeta Wyborcza Daily and a legendary anti-communist opposition figure.