This article originally appeared at RT
Increasingly anti-Russian rhetoric from Poland’s president Bronisław Komorowski is mostly an effort to scare the population into re-electing him, Russia Insider international affairs editor Alexander Mercouris told RT.
RT: On Sunday, Bronisław Komorowski said the upcoming Victory Day parade in Moscow is a symbol of instability in the world. What do you think of that statement?
Alexander Mercouris: I think that at one level they are simply appalling. To talk about the victory over Nazism, a victory which liberated Poland and ensured that Poland today is a real, existing country, as a destabilizing factor in world affairs is nothing short of astonishing. At another level, of course, it’s a political scaremongering by a Polish politician who wants to remain president.
RT: Will the tense relations affect the V-Day celebrations?
AM: Some people in Western Europe have been busy politicizing this anniversary in the most extraordinary way. What is happening on May 9 ought to be an event that should unite the whole of Europe. But what has happened is that because of the Ukrainian conflict and because of residual resentment, one suspects, of the disproportionate role Russia played in World War II victory, which some people want to downplay, it is being made into a cause of division. That is an absolute tragedy when you consider what that war meant and what that victory meant for millions upon millions of people.
RT: How do you see Russian-Polish relations develop?
AM: At this particular moment in time there is a very strong move within Poland to try and distance it from Russia and to create a kind of Russian scarecrow, basically to help certain Polish politicians. However, I have some knowledge of Poland, and I am confident that over time, relations between these two countries will improve. I have no doubt of it because that is very much in Poland’s interest, and of course it is also, I think, something that would be a benefit to the whole of Europe.
RT: Komorowski said Poland cannot forget about Russia’s threat – do you think there is any threat?
AM: No, Poland is not being threatened, and for Mr Komorowski to speak in that way is, as I said, complete scaremongering, done frankly very much with an eye to internal Polish politics. Also, with an eye to the kind of policies Poland has itself been following in Ukraine, where it has been playing, or rather, overplaying a very ambitious game which is well beyond its strength and which is going badly wrong.
The problem with this sort of scaremongering is that it creates tensions between Poland and Russia which are emphatically not in Poland’s interest. And I think there are a lot of people in Poland who are aware of this and who are becoming very concerned about this, even if they are not the dominant force in Poland at the moment.