Kaczyński turning Poland into ‘Franco’s Spain’

Sallie Anderson

Poland’s ruling party chairman, Jarosław Kaczyński, is attempting to turn the nation into a Roman Catholic dictatorship, Poland’s former foreign minister has actually stated.

” He [Kaczyński] wishes to develop a Catholic state of the Polish country. His vision is that of Salazar, or rather Franco, however including strong assistance from the United States,” Radek Sikorski, who is now an MEP with Polish opposition party Civic Platform, informed EUobserver in an interview.

  • Jarosław Kaczyński’s Law and Justice party has actually held power considering that 2015 (Picture: pis.org.pl).

” He [Kaczyński] believes he’s developing Bavaria [a German region] – strong customs and a modern-day economy, however, in fact, what may come out of this is Franco’s Spain,” Sikorski stated.

António Salazar and Francisco Franco were reactionary, authoritarian leaders in Portugal and Spain, respectively, up until the 1970 s.

Sikorski, who was Poland’s foreign minister from 2007 to 2014, likewise compared Kaczyński to Edward Gierek, a 1970 s Polish communist leader.

” He [Kaczyński] is anachronistic … he’s really 1970 s”, Sikorski stated.

” He’s a type of Gierek, who was a communist-nationalist, soft, spendthrift, although Gierek was in fact a moderniser, whereas this person [Kaczyński] is not,” Sikorskiadded


“Do you know how weird Kaczyński is?”, Sikorski stated.

“He doesn’t have an internet account. He doesn’t have a driver’s licence. He’s never been abroad, except as prime minister, and he lives alone with his cat,” Sikorski stated, of the 70- years of age Law and Justice (PiS) party chairman.

Sikorski talked to EUobserver on Thursday (7 May), soon prior to Poland was to hold a governmental election on Sunday.

Kaczyński had actually wished to “ram through the election” by postal vote, Sikorski stated, since the coronavirus lockdown would have assisted PiS-loyalist and incumbent Andrzej Duda maintainoffice


“If you were an OSCE observer, as I have been in other places, going to monitor the Polish election, first of all, you’d say: ‘There’s no level playing field in the media’. Secondly, you’d say: ‘The candidates have been unable to campaign’,” Sikorski stated, describing the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, a multilateral body based in Vienna.

“This election never had a chance to be democratic,” he stated.

Sunday’s vote was suddenly cancelled today, amidst PiS talk it may happen in July.

It was cancelled not since the EU had actually voiced issue, however since a PiS union partner had actually rebelled and since the Polish postal service might not provide 30 m ballots at brief notification, Sikorski stated.

” It was definitely not [due to] international pressure,” he stated.

The post ponement was itself dealt with in an undemocratic method, Sikorski kept in mind, revealing how things operate in Kaczyński’s”Catholic state of the Polish nation”


” What’s occurred, is that 2 [PiS] members of parliament have actually released declarations[saying the elections were off] That’s all. Technically speaking, absolutely nothing has actually altered,” he stated.

“Under the law, we’re still holding an election on Sunday and tomorrow will be the start of the pre-election ‘quiet period’, when people like me can’t speak to press. Afterwards, the Supreme Court is meant to invalidate the election, because it didn’t happen … it’s a complete shambles,” Sikorskiadded


“We’re in triumph-of-the-will territory,” he stated.

If the Polish vote can not happen prior to August, due to the pandemic, or other aspects, Duda’s term will end, developing a ghost president, and more”shambles”


The sane thing to do would be to state a “natural disaster”, which constitutionally mandated a vote 90 days after the catastrophe ended, Sikorski stated.

For its part, the European Commission, on Thursday, vowed to keep an eye on how Poland, and other EU states, dealt with elections throughout the infection emergency situation.

“Voters should be both shielded from health risks and their democratic rights should be protected,” a commission representative stated.

Kaczyński’s Poland has actually likewise encountered the EU centre on judicial reform, migration, environment, and usage of homophobic and xenophobic hate speech by PiS political leaders.

The EU commission has actually taken legal action against Poland in the EU courts and threatened sanctions over the judicial reforms, which, critics state, are turning Polish judges into PiS marionettes.

However the commission had “no instruments” that might actually stop the Kaczyński machine, Sikorski stated.

Kaczyński sect

Asked by EUobserver why Kaczyński’s vision was winning votes in Poland, among the most pro-European societies in the EU, Sikorski stated the “traditionalist and provincial” Polish Catholic church had actually contributed.

Kaczyński was “well organised” and had actually developed a “Bolshevik sect” around himself, while the Polish opposition was divided, Sikorski added, describing an extreme Russian motion, which took power in the 1917 Russian transformation.

And the truth Polish ballot laws offered winning celebrations reward seats in parliament likewise misshaped the photo, Sikorski stated.

“Kaczyński does not represent the majority of Polish society,” Sikorski kept in mind.

The nationalist-populist wave in Poland became part of a broader, global tide, Sikorski likewise stated.

“In Brussels, there’s a thinking that says: ‘Oh, this is Eastern European politics. This is somehow different’,” the Polish MEP stated.

” No. He [Kaczyński] is riding the exact same wave of reaction versus meritocracy, versus globalisation, versus combination that all the other political business owners have actually been making use of,” Sikorski stated.

“Kaczyński led the way,” Sikorski kept in mind, putting to one side Hungarian leader Viktor Orban, another EU authoritarian, as a diplomatic immunity.

“Chronologically, it was first Kaczyński, then Brexit, then Trump,” Sikorski stated, describing a PiS election success in 2015, the Brexit referendum in 2016, and United States president Donald Trump, who concerned power that exact same year, and who had likewise “given up on democracy”, Sikorski stated.

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