Good News 2013-14

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The American Institute of Polish Culture


Embracing the Past

The American Institute of Polish Culture, Inc. Mrs. Blanka A. Rosenstiel founded the American Institute of Polish Culture (AIPC) in 1972 as a non-profit, tax-exempt Florida Corporation. The aims of the Institute are twofold -- first, to share with Americans the rich heritage of Poland, which has contributed in so many ways to the history of the U.S., and second, to promote the scientific, educational and artistic contributions of Polish-Americans. For over forty years our endeavors have received support from our members, donors and the enthusiastic participation of other ethnic groups in the community and the friendly cooperation of the press, all of which have helped to strengthen our leading role in the cultural life of the community. We plan to continue being a catalyst in promoting knowledge about Poland and Polish-Americans nationwide. Ongoing programs include: Each year, the Harriet Irsay Scholarship, established in 1992, awards ten to fifteen talented students $1,000 grants each. All majors and areas of study are considered and many applicants are of Polish descent. AIPC has awarded $275,000 in grants to worthy students over the last two decades. In 1998, the Institute spearheaded the establishment of the Kościuszko Chair of Polish Studies at the University of Virginia, for research and education and sponsorship of visiting scholars. In 2008, the Chair moved to the Institute of World Politics in Washington, D.C. The current Director of the Chair is Prof. Marek Chodakiewicz, Ph.D. AIPC has sponsored dozens of lectures at educational facilities throughout the years. As a result of four decades of collaboration with Florida International University (FIU) the Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland was established there in Miami in 2010. Lecture themes have included globalization, art, music, politics and economics. AIPC also established the ongoing lecture series at CREES (Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies) at the University of Virginia in 2005. The annual International Polonaise Ball serves as the main fundraiser for the Institute and is attended by guests from around the world. Each year themes explore the cultural ties between Poland and other countries, such as Spain, India, Greece, Japan, Great Britain, South America, and the Native Americans. Gold Medals recipients have included Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwsz; Dr. Andrew Schally, Nobel Prize laureate in medicine; James Michener, author; Senator Barbara Mikulski; and Professor Norman Davies, historian. Film: Polish film is a growing presence in international moviemaking, and AIPC helps to foster that growth in the U.S. by bringing contemporary Polish filmmakers and their work to Miami. Many of the films have won major awards and some were screened for the first time in the U.S. Art: The Institute has long been a champion of fine and contemporary Polish and Polish-American art, and has sponsored and organized several solo and group shows. For example, our historical exhibit, Perspektywa Polska, traveled nationwide to museums, universities for over 25 years. Publications: AIPC has translated and published many books including the five volume history of Poland, Saga of a Nation written by Pawl Jasienica and translated by Alexander Jordan, and the rare Accomplished Senator by Wawrzyniec Grzymala Goslicki (1530-1607). Our annual magazine, Good News, is distributed to all members and others, and the Institute also houses a public library with books in both Polish and English.

Board of Directors Officers/Directors Founder, President, Chairman and Chief Executive Blanka A. Rosenstiel Vice President Barbara Cooper Secretary and Treasurer Dr. Jerzy Kyparisis Directors Agnieszka Gray Gerald Jaski Steven Karski Janusz Kozlowski Rose Kruszewski Christopher Kurczaba Danuta Kyparisis Teresa Lowenthal Alexander Montague Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk Dr. Pat Riley Jaroslaw Rottermund Jacek Schindler Inga Luksza Senis Michael Skronski Marjorie Sonderling Executive Director Beata Paszyc Committee Chairmen Fund Raising Barbara Cooper Nominating Blanka A. Rosenstiel Public Relations Marjorie Sonderling Polish Studies Chair Gerald Jaski Scholarship Jaroslaw Rottermund Special Projects Beata Paszyc

Message from the President Dear Members and Friends, The 2013-2014 season has been one of so many memories, I am sure for many of you, but most especially for Poles and Polish-Americans. We have been part of and have witnessed extraordinary events - both wonderful and horrific - that have not only irrevocably changed world history, but have radically altered Poland and her people forever. I know that all of us have been touched directly by what has happened over these last decades. Our personal experiences and journeys have given us firsthand knowledge of the evil that man can visit upon his fellow man and the tenacity and ultimate victory of the human spirit. Those of us who survived circumstances we were thrust into against our wills have that one story that redefined who we were then into who we are now. For those of us who took part in the struggles for the liberation of Poland to a free, self-ruling country, our stories are literally the foundation of what Poland is today. And to those who have chosen a lifelong commitment of righting misinformation, of ensuring history is recounted accurately and fully, and to changing perceptions of our country, it is an ever evolving story. Every one of us has a personal history that in some way has been impacted by very specific world-changing events. These past months have been particularly stirring for so many reasons, in no small part because of all the anniversaries of events that began in the 20th century and the memories they have aroused:

• 75th anniversary of the start of World War II with the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939 • 70th anniversary of the major Polish rebellion against the Nazi and then the Soviet encroachment in the Warsaw Uprising on August 1, 1944 (the greatest military operation undertaken by Polish civil resistance during WWII) • 25th anniversary of the first organized discussion with heads of state about Solidarity’s role in the fall of communism at the Polish Round Table Talks on February 6, 1989 • 15th anniversary of Poland’s accession into NATO on March 12, 1999 • 10th anniversary of Poland joining the EU on May 1, 2004

Thus, this year’s Good News pays tribute to those who have lived through these events. The magazine’s overall theme is about “embracing the past and building the future” and I hope that the articles within these pages will resonant with you, and encourage you to share your memories with others. By telling and retelling our stories, we stay bound together and united in assuring our collective histories are never forgotten, and that the past will continue to play an integral role in the future. May all of us always find the time and courage to tell our story and to listen to those of our fellow man. My heartfelt appreciation goes to those who make AIPC successful in meeting all the goals we set for ourselves many years ago. To Beata Paszyc, Executive Director, and Lynne Schaefer, Executive Assistant, I thank you for bringing new and fresh perspectives to the Institute, and working as a great team to ensure that our mission always stays front and center. To the Board of Directors, I thank you for your commitment to support our endeavors and to find ways to help us flourish. And to all of our members, donors, and friends whose generosity year after year has provided the means for us to keep offering new programs and events, I thank you for your confidence and faith in what we do. I enjoy the opportunity to grow with you all, and imagine we will keep moving forward to an even more successful future. It is a true blessing to be part of someone else’s journey, so I am blessed beyond measure for being part of yours. With much gratitude,


Good News 2013-2014



Editor-in-Chief & Publisher: Executive Editor: Assistant Editor: Printed By:

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Beata Paszyc Lynne Schaefer StationAmerica, Miami, FL

Proofreading: Eileen Hall Graphic Design: Amanda Orr

Barbara Muze Beata Paszyc

Lynne Schaefer

Front & Back Cover: Designed & photographed by Beata Paszyc. Shot in Poznan, PL. The front cover's theme, "Embracing the Past," features portraits of famous Poles such as King Casimir, Frederic Chopin, Nicolaus Copernicus, Maria Sklodowska Curie, Queen Jadwiga, Tadeusz Kosciuszko, Czeslaw Milosz, Jozef Pilsudski, St. John Paul II, Irena Sendler and Wislawa Szymborska. Contributing Researchers and Writers: Inge Auerbacher; Darek Barcikowski; Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz; Jason Chohonis; Jadwiga Gewert; Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride; Dr. David Herman; Dr. Alma Kadragic; Dr. Piotr H. Kosicki; Matthew Kwasiborski; Barbara Muze; Andrew Nagorski; Jadwiga Palade; Beata Paszyc; Lew Randall; Lady Blanka Rosenstiel; Lynne Schaefer; Minister Radoslaw Sikorski; Charles Sothers; Pawel P. Styrna; Irene Tomaszewski; Wanda Urbanska; Tecia Werbowski All articles, including Did you know..., not given a by-line were researched and written by:

Beata Paszyc

Student Essays:

Julia Banasikowski Marcin Marszalek


Betty Alvarez Darek Barcikowski Beata Paszyc

Cassidee Collier Jason Tomczak

Lynne Schaefer

Stephanie Ichniowski Alex Gort

Sources: The following resources were used for research and photos. For a detailed list, please contact our office. Adas Israel Congregation, Washington, DC; The Autumn Man by Albert Slugocki (2013);; Children of Terror; The Chopin Foundation of the United States, Inc.; Code Name: Zegota. Rescuing Jews in Occupied Poland 1942 - 1945 (2010); Consular/Diplomatic Forum (2014);; Embassy of the Republic of Poland; Florida International University; The Fund for American Studies; Hollywood.PL: Beyond the Dream by Agnieszka Niezgoda and Jacek Laskus (2013); The Kosciuszko Chair of Polish Studies at The Institute of World Politics; Legacy of Polish Design by Andrea Austoni (2010); National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (NECO); Nurture the World; Polish Arts and Cultural Foundation; Polish Assistance; Polish Theatre of Toronto; Spitfire Liberator Films; The United States Holocaust Museum; University of Virginia Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES); Wikipedia Distribution: The American Institute of Polish Culture, Inc. 1440 79th Street Causeway, Suite 117 Miami, Florida 33141 (305) 864-2349 Co-Sponsored By: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland The Embassy of the Republic of Poland Editors Note: The photo on page 37 of the 2012-2013 Good News was incorrect. The correct caption is 'Major Jan Zumbach in his Spitfire.' We thank Peter Obst for bringing this to our attention. 2014 Š The American Institute of Polish Culture, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Good News magazine is published by the American Institute of Polish Culture for educational purposes only.

Good News 2013-2014


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Message from the President Ethnic Day at White House Woman of Many Faces Radiation Premier in Miami Experiencing Radiation Kosciuszko Chair 2013-2014 Harriet Irsay Scholarship Board of Directors Meeting Consular Information Notes from My Travels Polish Lectures at UVa Poland's Fight for Freedom Jewish Revival in Poland Warsaw Uprising 1944 Code Name: Zegota Thank You, Woz An Educational Marvel Hollywood PL: Beyond the Dream Canonization of Pope Lady Blanka: Woman of Influence Save the Date 42nd International Polonaise Ball Time Capsules Freedom Day Lech Walesa's Starring Role Last Goodbyes Men Behind Images An Opportunity Seized Meeting Walesa Let Your Story Be Heard Year of Jan Karski Polish Students at AIPES We Ask That You Listen Well Fourteen Minute Miracle Spitfire Liberator The Norblin Odyssey JPII: I was Looking for Your Christmas Party What Being Polish Means to Me Springtime Social A Granddaughter's Wish Chopin Foundation Against All Odds Children of Terror New Members Thanks to Our Donors Volunteers Delve Into a Book AIPC Membership

Ethnic Day at the White House By Darek Barcikowski


ady Blanka Rosenstiel joined a delegation of ethnic community leaders from across the US at the White House on February 7, 2014 for a series of meetings and discussions about issues that impact represented communities. It was the first time since Clinton was in office that the Polish American community participated in a White House event with such a large and geographically diverse representation. Representatives from the Polish American Congress, the Piast Institute, PANGEA Alliance and various Polish media outlets including Nowy Dziennik and the White Eagle raised questions pertaining to the inclusion of Poland in the US Visa Waiver Program (VWP), an issue that remains front and center on the Polish American agenda.

Ms. Aldona Baron, Mr. Grzegorz Fryc, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Ms. Lisa Wisniewski, Mr. Adrian Baron

For many, the day’s events did not evoke enthusiasm nor present a clear path to the VWP that the Polish Americans had expected. But as some noted, the meeting facilitated a discussion among a diverse group of community leaders, including many young Polish Americans, and served as a reminder that our ethnic group must work together more closely in order to have a strong, unified voice on the national political arena.

The Polish American contingency called on the Administration to come up with an alternative plan for delivering on the visa waiver promise made to the people of Poland and Polish Americans years ago. Currently, the Administration’s position on the issue is limited to overhauling the US immigration system with comprehensive reforms that would include the expansion of the VWP. “This is not enough,” said Michal Majcherczyk from Classic Travel in New Jersey, which hopes to expand its business to service the growing number of Polish tourists looking to visit the United States. “Tourism from Poland could add millions to the US economy and contribute to the creation of thousands of jobs,” argues Majcherczyk. “But travelers are discouraged by the expensive and burdensome visa process, and end up choosing other destinations such as Asia or Africa.” Lady Blanka Rosenstiel told a personal story of a family member who was denied a visa and could not attend a wedding in the US. “To me, this is unacceptable” she said, while also pointing out that Poland is one of only a handful of EU members whose citizens need a visa to come to the US. Subsequent discussions focused on transatlantic relations, trade and the role ethnic communities can play in advocating for immigration reform. The pivotal role Poland has played in shaping post-communist Europe and supporting US missions in the Middle East was also pointed out.

Mr. Marcin Bolec, Mr. Michal Majcherczyk, Mr. Leszek “Nick” Sadowski, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Ms. Barbara Anderson, Mr. Bogdan Chmielewski


Good News 2013-2014

A Woman of Many Firsts Maria Sklodowska was born in Warsaw, Poland on November 7, 1867. During her years at the Sorbonne in Paris, she met and married Pierre Curie in 1895. Maria Sklodowska Curie is perhaps the most famous of all women scientists and notable for her many firsts: •

She was the first woman in Europe to receive her doctorate in science.

Maria and Pierre Curie discovered polonium and radium, both of which emit special radiation. It was Maria who first used the term ‘radioactivity’ for this phenomenon.

In 1903, she became the first woman to win a Nobel Prize for Physics. The award, jointly awarded to Curie, her husband Pierre, and Henri Becquerel, was for the discovery of radioactivity.

She was also the first female lecturer, professor and head of Laboratory at the Sorbonne University in Paris (1906).

In 1911, she won an unprecedented second Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her discovery and isolation of pure radium and radium compounds.

She was the first person ever to receive two Nobel Prizes in different sciences.

She was the first Nobel Prize Laureate with a daughter who also received the Nobel Prize Laureate - Irene Joliot-Curie won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1935.

She is the first woman who has been laid to rest under the famous dome of the Pantheon in Paris (1995) for her own merits.

Radiation Artists Maria Nowotarska graduated from the Academy for the Dramatic Arts in Krakow, Poland and performed under the direction of most of the renowned theatrical directors. She also appeared in a number of films and TV productions. After emigrating to Toronto, Canada in 1990, she cofounded “The Salon of Poetry, Music and Theatre” where many original plays about celebrated Polish women have been presented. She also created an Actors’ Studio to introduce young people of Polish origin to the stage. Her awards include the Medal of Polish Senate, Cross of Merit by the President of the Republic of Poland, “Gloria Artis” medal, “Distinguished Advocate of Polish Culture” title by the Polish Minister of Culture and National Heritage, and the Gold Medal from the American Institute of Polish Culture, Miami in 2011.

Good News 2013-2014

Agata Pilitowska, a graduate of the Krakow School of Drama, has portrayed many famous and accomplished Polish women in over 100 stage productions throughout North America, South America and Europe. Her successful collaboration with her mother, Maria Nowotarska, and Kazimierz Braun in “The Salon of Poetry, Music and Theatre” in Toronto, Canada has earned her widespread acclaim and recognition. Her artistic achievements have been honored with the title of “Merited for Polish Culture” conferred by the Polish Government, and in 2006 she received the prestigious medal “Gloria Artis” from the Minister of Culture and the National Heritage of Poland.


Maria Sklodowska Curie

Kazimierz Braun holds a Ph.D. in Directing from the National School of Drama in Warsaw. His theatrical career as an Artistic Director and General Manager for over 150 productions for stage and television spanned over two decades in Poland. In 1985 he emigrated to North America. He is currently a tenured Professor at the University of Buffalo, NY. As a member of the Polish Theatre of Toronto, he has written a series of plays featuring celebrated Polish women for actors Maria Nowotarska and Agata Pilitowska. Prof. Braun has received many prestigious awards from foundations around the world, including the Guggenheim, Fulbright, and Turzański. He also received the Polish Gold Cross of Merit and the esteemed Polish medal “Gloria Artis.” Prof. Braun was awarded a “Special Recognition” by the American Institute of Polish Culture, Miami for his contributions to Polish culture in North America.

Radiation Premier in Miami


adiation: The Story of Maria Sklodowska Curie by Kazimierz Braun, had its Miami debut at the Florida International University campus theater on November 22, 2013. It focuses on an extraordinary Polish-French woman who, as a two-time Noble Prize winner, changed the world of science. The emotionally charged story is told with Marie Curie’s own words from an interview her daughter recorded in Passy, France in 1934, while her mother was a patient at the Sancellemoz Sanitorium, where she died later that year. Actresses Maria Nowotarska (Marie Sklodowska Curie) and Agata Pilitowska (Eva Curie) from the Polish Canadian Theater of Toronto presented two pitch-perfect performances with such skill and sensitivity that the audience was transported to Maria Sklodowska’s early days at the at the Sorbonne in Paris. There she met her husband, Pierre Curie, and together they identified radioactivity and other groundbreaking discoveries. The story emphasizes Maria’s brilliant mind, her accomplishments, her happiness surrounding the birth of her two daughters, and her utter despair when she tragically lost her husband. With crisp dialogue and seamless acting, her unquenchable thirst for knowledge and her amazing role as a woman in a male-dominated field are highlighted. The play also touched upon her personal struggles when news of an affair created an international scandal that threatened to derail her professional career. Nonetheless, she continued as she always had - strong-willed, focused, passionate and devoted to science and her children.

Radiation in Miami

Presented and sponsored by: The American Institute of Polish Culture; “Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland,” Florida International University, School of International and Public Affairs; The Chopin Foundation of the U.S.; The Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Miami; The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland; Roxy Theatre Group; and “What if Works Inc.”

“Maria Curie:

Although the entire play was spoken in Polish with English subtitles displayed in the background, the acting was so convincing and natural that several commented later that the language was secondary. The theater was filled to capacity of 170 people, mostly English-speaking FIU students and faculty. At the end of the performance, many had tears in their eyes as they gave a standing ovation to the actresses. It was a very moving theatrical experience and an unforgettable evening.

Overachiever who cooked, cleaned, discovered radium, and raised a Nobel Prize-winning daughter, but who never forgot how to make a good pierogi.

A meet and greet reception at FIU’s Sky Lounge followed the play and gave audience members a chance to chat with Ms. Nowotarska and Ms. Pilitowska. This event was made possible thanks to a great collaboration between the American Institute of Polish Culture and Professor Phillip Church, Dept. of Theatre, College of Architecture & the Arts, FIU; Christine Caly-Sanchez, Assistant Director, MEUCE, FIU; Charles A. Sothers, Arts Director, Roxy Theatre Group; and friends and volunteers who helped with this special performance in Miami. Thank you!

Eve Curie in recalling her mother


Good News 2013-2014

Experiencing Radiation By Charles Sothers


irst and foremost, it was an absolute pleasure to work with these international performers, the wonderful mother-daughter acting duo of Maria Nowotarska and Agata Pilitowska from the Polish Theater of Toronto. Personally, the experience was quite rewarding, as Miami is still in its early phase of becoming a national center for the arts, so the opportunity to witness a performance as well acted and prepared as Radiation: The Story of Maria Sklodowska Curie is a theatre lover’s dream.

of Poland’s beloved female scientists very quickly found a home at Florida International University. FIU’s performance space turned out to be perfectly-suited for the event, beautifully complementing the intimate production. If the idea of a foreign language theatre experience was intriguing, the actual performance was spectacular! Being able to witness the story of this amazing woman in the words that her daughter recorded in her native Polish language was well worth the small effort that had to be made to secure a venue. It was truly inspiring to watch these dedicated artists triumph both on stage and through, what turned out to be, a minor setback. I look forward to future productions by this “family affair,” as I came to know that Agata’s son, Maciej Lis, was also the technical designer and operator. I anticipate future collaborations with The American Institute of Polish Culture as they continue to bring fantastic cultural events like Radiation to Miami’s theatre community.

When I was first approached by my former college professor, Phillip Church, about this collaboration with The American Institute of Polish Culture, my non-profit youth arts organization, The Roxy Theatre Group, was situated in a location that could comfortably host the touring company from Canada. This was a great and rare opportunity for our organization, since we not only focus on the performing arts, but we also engage our students in academic pursuits. The fact that this presentation would be performed in Polish with English subtitles certainly piqued our interest. It was both unfortunate and a blessing that our old facility was flooded just before the technical rehearsal was to occur.

Charles Sothers is the Theatre Arts & Programs Director for the Roxy Theatre Group (RTG). Located in southwest Miami, RTG is a non-profit organization geared toward children ages 3 to 17 years old, yet catering to all ages. Programs focus on the performing arts and classes are offered in dance, drama and voice, culminating in on-stage productions. Visit RTG at

It was obviously unlucky because the event could have been cancelled, but a blessing too, because had the flooding occurred during the performance it would have been disastrous. Owing that the theatre community is such a collaboration of similar minds and spirits, the life story of one

Prof. Markus Thiel, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Prof. Phillip Church, Ms. Maria Nowotarska, Ms. Jessica Castillo, Ms. Agata Pilitowska, Mr. Charles Sothers, Mr. Rafael Martinez, Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Ms. Christine Caly-Sanchez

Good News 2013-2014


Ms. Lynne Schaefer, Mr. Mike Skronski

Dr. Renata Cymer, Dr. Rhiannon Thomas

Ms. Agata Pilitowska, Mrs. Barbara Cooper, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Ms. Maria Nowotarska, Mr. Emmett Young, Dr. Monika Krol

Mrs. Anna Landry, Mrs. Klaudia Juniewicz, Ms. Maria Nowotarska, Mrs. Katarzyna Maguire, Mrs. Joanna Wiela

Mrs. Elzbieta Wnuk, Prof. Stanislaw Wnuk

Standing: Mrs. Danuta Kyparisis, Prof. Stanislaw Wnuk, Dr. Wojciech Cymer Seated: Mr. Charles Sothers, Ms. Lynne Schafer, Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Mrs. Anna Landry, Mrs. Klaudia Juniewicz, Ms. Maria Nowotarska, Mrs. Katarzyna Maguire, Mrs. Joanna Wiela, FIU students


Good News 2013-2014

Kosciuszko Chair in 2013-2014 By Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz and Paweł P. Styrna Introduction The 2013-2014 academic year has been very successful and eventful, both for The Institute of World Politics (IWP) in general, and the Kościuszko Chair of Polish Studies (KC) in particular. As always, we would like to thank and recognize all the benefactors, friends, staff, and interns who make possible the KC at IWP through their generous funding and hard work. We are most grateful to Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and the American Institute of Polish Culture, the Tadeusz Ungar Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Zenon Woś, the Hon. Aldona Woś, Mr. Adam Bąk, Mrs. Ava Polansky-Bąk, Mr. John Niemczyk, the late Dr. Janusz Subczyński, Mr. and Mrs. Iwo Pogonowski, Mr. and Mrs. Władysław Poncet de la Riviere, the Polish American Veterans’ Association (PAVA) — in particular Mr. Antoni Chróścielewski, Dr. Teofil Lachowicz, and Mr. Christopher Olechowski — as well as many others. Last but not least, we owe our gratitude to our hard-working and dilligent interns from Poland who served as wonderful “ambassadors” of their native land - Mr. Bolesław Piasecki (Fall 2013), and Ms. Karolina Dobrowolska and Mr. Paweł Pawłowski (Spring 2014). Without the help of everyone mentioned here, the Chair cannot accomplish its noble mission of spreading appreciation for and understanding of the rich history and culture of Poland and the Intermarium. Thus, during the past year we have put out numerous publications, hosted many lectures, and welcomed several guests. Publications and Media Activism In June 2014, Dr. Marek Jan Chodakiewicz released his new book, Transformacja czy niepodległość? [Transformation or Independence?] (Gdańsk: Patria Media, 2014) in Poland. The work attempts to answer many important questions on the nature of the post-communist

quarter-century (1989-2014) in Poland. He continues his work ensuring that the voice of PolishAmericans is heard in the American historical, scholarly, and political discourse. In addition to writing numerous book reviews and articles on both history and current events, Dr. Chodakiewicz contributes columns on a regular basis to Najwyższy CZAS! and Tygodnik Solidarność (Solidarity’s flagship weekly). He also pens analyses for the internet hub and think-tank, the Selous Foundation for Public Policy Research (SFPPR: The topics addressed by Dr. Chodakiewicz include Vladimir Putin’s propaganda campaigns; the Tsarnaev brothers; the situation in Ukraine; the case of Edward Snowden; and the Syrian civil war. A complete listing of these publications may be viewed on the IWP website ( under Prof. Chodakiewicz’s faculty profile. The KC’s Paweł P. Styrna is also a regular contributor to the SFPPR News & Analysis Section, writing on issues related to Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, and the Smolensk Plane Crash. His letter to the editor, which criticized a dismissive op-ed about those skeptical of the official Moscow version of the Smolensk Plane Crash, was published by The New York Times on December 2, 2013. He published an article in the scholarly quarterly of the Polish Institute of Arts and Sciences of America (PIASA), The Polish Review (2013, Vol. 58, No. 4: pp. 3-27),

Mr. Pawel Styrna

Good News 2013-2014

Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz


As part of the Kościuszko Chair’s Intermarium series, the lecture “Between Extermination and Persecution: Christians in the Post-Ottoman Zone” took place on April 24th and featured Dr. Chodakiewicz, Mr. Vilen Khlgatyan and Mr. Aram Hamparian (Armenian National Committee of America), and was featured on Armenian TV. The speakers may be viewed starting at the 28-minute mark on-line. From April 27 - 29, 2014, Dr. Chodakiewicz participated in the US Army War College War Games on Ukraine. The exercise took place at the College’s Carlisle Barracks in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Dr. Chodakiewicz employed his historical expertise on Central and Eastern Europe and the post-Soviet zone, contributing many insights. Dr. Tania Mastrapa, the director of IWP’s Office of Professional Affiliations, attended the war games as an observer.1

HIH Price Ermias Sahle-Selassie

entitled “Defense of Western Civilization or “Polish Imperialism? Opinions on the Kiev Expedition in the American, British, Belgian, Polish, and Soviet Press: A Sample from April-May 1920.” In 2014, KC is also preparing to publish Mr. Styrna’s biography of forgotten Polish industrialist, Leopold Wellisz.

The Bąk Family Counterintelligence Library in Poland Thanks to the generous help of Mr. Adam Bąk, the KC has established a collection of American books of counter intelligence in Warsaw, Poland. This initiative will help train young Polish students of intelligence and counterintelligence in their craft.

Lectures KC-related lectures, such as the Intermarium series, have also been attracting growing media attention, and journalists and TV reporters are steadily becoming a permanent feature during these events.

The Annual Kościuszko Chair Military Lecture The subject of last year’s annual Kościuszko Chair Military Lecture, which was delivered by Dr. Chodakiewicz on Friday, September 27, 2013, was the heroic, Thermopylae -like Polish resistance against all odds at Westerplatte in September 1939.2

Dr. Chodakiewicz was mentioned by Dr. Alejandro Chafuen in his March 12, 2014 Forbes Op-Ed piece entitled “Russia in Ukraine: Putting Poland Back At the Front.” Dr. Chafuen referred particularly to Dr. Chodakiewicz’s recent lecture, “Ukraine: Code Orange,” on the Maidan revolt and the current crisis between Russia and Ukraine. Only two days before, on March 10th, Dr. Chodakiewicz was interviewed by the Al Jazeera network on the Ukraine crisis.

The Sixth Annual Kościuszko Chair Conference On November 2, 2013, we hosted the Sixth Annual Kościuszko Chair Conference dedicated to topics in Polish/Central and Eastern European culture, history, and current affairs. The event was divided into four segments: • HIH Prince Ermias Sahle-Selassie gave a lecture on “Agent Poeta on Ethiopia: The Case of Communist Secret Police Agent Ryszard Kapuscinski.” • Dr. Tomasz Sommer discussed “The Children of the Victims of the Polish Operation of the NKVD.” • Dr. Ewa Kurek delivered a presentation entitled, “Beyond Solidarity: Polish-Jewish Relations in WWII.” • Mr. Paweł Styrna lectured on “Persian Hospitality: The Poles from the Gulag in Iran.” The KC Annual Spring Symposium On Saturday, April 12th, KC hosted its Fourth Annual Spring Symposium, one of the Chair’s two semi-annual conferences devoted to the historical, cultural, geopolitical, economic, and other aspects of Poland and the Intermarium.

Dr. Elizabeth Radziszewski


Good News 2013-2014

The first speaker, Mr. Michael Szpindor-Watson, a doctoral candidate in economics at George Mason University, spoke on the impact of climate change on the persecutions and expulsions of Jews in Europe from 1300-1795. He pointed out that while climate shocks exacerbated tensions between Christians and Jews and often led to the persecution or even expulsions of the latter, the same positive correlation was not true of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, which was known as the “Jewish Paradise” (Paradisus Iudaeorum). Dr. Elizabeth Radziszewski, Visiting Assistant Professor of International Relations at Lehigh University, delivered a presentation on “Competition, Accountability, and the Private Military Industry.” Although the topic of private military contractors has been a controversial one, Dr. Radziszewski pointed out that competition among several firms had a positive impact on the accountability and effectiveness of the private contractor firms.

Mr. Michael Szpindor-Watson

Dr. Wojciech Jerzy Muszyński of the Institute of National Remembrance (IPN) in Warsaw, Poland, deconstructed the attempts of post-modernist scholars and pundits to pin the blame for the vast and bloody crimes perpetrated by Marxists-Leninists on “nationalism.” As an expert of the Polish nationalist (anti-Nazi and anti-Soviet) underground during the Second World War, Dr. Muszyński spoke about Bolesław Piasecki, who started out as a radical nationalist in interwar Poland, continued as the leader of a small Piłsudskiite3 underground resistance outfit during the war, and ended up collaborating with the communists after the Soviet occupation. In communist-occupied Poland, Piasecki was best known as the leader of a small pro-regime “progressive Catholic” organization/publishing house, PAX. Dr. Muszyński explained all the seemingly sharp twists and turns in Piasecki’s political path — pointing out that the head of PAX had always been an “iron pragmatic” utilizing whatever ideology suited his ultimate goal, power — debunking the revisionist myth of communism as “socialist in form, but nationalist in content.”

Dr. Wojciech Jerzy Muszynski

Father Jarosław Wiśniewski, a Polish-born Catholic missionary, shared his experiences from the two decades he spent propagating the faith in the post-Soviet zone, including places such as Rostov on the Don, Uzbekistan, Sakhalin Island, and Kamchatka Peninsula. The Reverend highlighted the human rights abuses in post-Soviet Russia, including violations of religious freedom. He pointed out the Russian Orthodox Church is led by “KGB officers dressed in priestly robes” and has been waging a fierce battle against Catholicism, targeting especially (but not only) priests of Polish descent. Some were even murdered by “unknown culprits” or died in suspicious “accidents.” This is an insight into the mindset and modus operandi of the post-Soviet Russian ruling establishment.

Fr. Jaroslaw Wisniewski

Good News 2013-2014


The Intermarium Lecture Series

Guests at IWP

In 2013-2014, Dr. Chodakiewicz continued his lecture series on the Intermarium region, i.e. Central and Eastern Europe between the Baltic, Black, and Adriatic Seas.

This year, in addition to the list of distinguished guest speakers mentioned previously, Dr. Chodakiewicz met with the West Point cadets and several KC guests – Gen. Edward Równy (who received a Honoris Causa Doctorate from IWP during the Spring 2014 Commencement), Dr. Sebastian Gorka, Mr. Ralph Galliano of the Selous Foundation News & Analysis Section, and journalist Mr. David Satter.

Some of the lecture topics were the coming existential crisis in Russia and the world (Mr. David Archibald); the Slovak political elites (Dr. Piotr Bajda, Cardinal Wyszyński University, Warsaw); Cossack history (Mrs. Nathalie Vogel); sovereignty within the EU after the Lisbon Treaty (Mr. Tymoteusz Zych, Warsaw University); Ukraine: Between Scylla and Charybidis (Mr. Styrna); Non-kinetic warfare in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict (Mr. Vilen Khlgatyan, IWP, and Mr. Vahan Dilanyan, Political Developments Research Center); and the Smolensk Plane Crash four years later (Dr. Kazimierz Nowaczyk).

As the 2014-2015 academic year approaches, KC prepares to host its Annual Military Lecture in September 2014, the Seventh Annual KC Conference in November 2014, and the Spring Symposium in April 2015. We are also conducting numerous research projects and look forward to other events and publications which will further our mission. Once again, we wish to thank everyone who makes our exertions and achievements possible.

In addition, the KC devoted two special lectures to the Ukrainian crisis one on March 7th, delivered by Dr. Chodakiewicz (“Ukraine: Code Orange”) and a follow-up presentation, delivered jointly by Dr. Chodakiewicz and Dr. Sebastian Gorka on March 21st (“Ukraine: What is to be done”).

1 According to U.S. Army regulation 10–44, the mission of the War College is “To prepare selected military, civilian, and international leaders for the responsibilities of strategic leadership; educate current and future leaders on the development and employment of land power in a joint, multinational and interagency environment; conduct research and publish on national security and military strategy; and engage in activities in support of the Army’s strategic communication efforts.” (Wikipedia)

New Research Fellows

2 Both ancient and modern writers have used the Battle of Thermopylae as an example of the power of a patriotic army defending native soil. The performance of the defenders at the battle of Thermopylae is also used as an example of the advantages of training, equipment, and good use of terrain as force multipliers and has become a symbol of courage against overwhelming odds. (Wikipedia)

The Kościuszko Chair is pleased to welcome two new research fellows - Nathalie Vogel and Tomasz Sommer. During her fellowship, Nathalie Vogel will conduct a project on Cossack military history. A German political scientist, Nathalie has dedicated her career to the defense and the promotion of democracy and democratic movements around the world. Tomasz will continue working on the “Polish Operation” of the NKVD, a Soviet genocide of Poles in the late 1930s.

3 A Piłsudskiite was a supporter of Poland’s Marshal Józef Piłsudski, founder of the World War I-era Polish Legions and the first Chief of State of the Second Republic of Poland. The Piłsudskiites had a major influence on Polish politics in the interwar period. (Wikipedia)

Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz and General Edward Rowny host West Point cadets

For more information about the Institute of World Politics, the Kościuszko Chair of Polish Studies, publications and opportunities to donate, please visit their website at 11

Good News 2013-2014

Harriet Irsay Scholarship “I wanted to give something to people of Polish descent, so they would be able to improve themselves through education. We should help our own people, just like other nations help their students.” - Harriet Irsay

About Harriet Irsay

Scholarship History

Mrs. Harriet Irsay, born Jadwiga Pogorzelski, was a member of the American Institute of Polish Culture in Miami, Florida, since its inception in 1972. Soon after that, she joined the Board of Directors where she remained until 2008. In 1992, she established the Harriet Irsay Scholarship Fund as part of the Institute’s ongoing efforts to foster education and culture in America. Irsay, whose family owned the Indianapolis Colts since the 1970’s, funded many charitable causes. This scholarship is a tribute to her Polish roots.

Since 1992, the Scholarship Committee of the American Institute of Polish Culture has awarded scholarships to over 215 talented American students of Polish descent. Within the last few years, the Institute broadened the scope of majors and other requirements with the intent of reaching a larger population of students. We hope our readers will spread the word about the Scholarship and will continue to support the fund by making financial contributions. Pledges are invaluable in assisting the new generation of Polish-American students. All donations are fully tax deductible.

The Harriet Irsay Scholarship Fund awards a scholarship to American students, preferably of Polish heritage, who wish to continue their education after high school and through college. With an eye toward the future and the distribution of information regarding Polish culture, history and people, the grants are given to students from a variety of majors and academic disciplines. Since the launch of the program, over $275,000 has been awarded to students from all over the country.

For the academic year 2013/14, AIPC awarded 15 scholarship grants valued at $1,000 each. Recipients were asked to write an article on a Polish-related subject for publication in Good News. You will find a few of these articles in this magazine. Once again, we congratulate all the winners and wish them well in their future educational endeavors.

Mrs. Isray passed away in July 2008, but her legacy remains with the contributions she made of over a quarter million dollars. She is greatly missed and remembered for her generosity.

“To know that we know what we know,

and to know that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge.

Nicolaus Copernicus

Please help shape the future of students, preferably of Polish descent, by making contributions to the Harriet Irsay Scholarship Fund. Additionally, we are always looking to establish new scholarships. Please let us know if you are interested in starting a fund in your name at the Institute. If you would like to be part of the scholarship committee who dedicates its time to reviewing applications and selecting the most worthy students, please contact us for more information. To contribute to the Scholarship Fund, please see the Contribution Form at the back of this publication.

Good News 2013-2014


Scholarship Recipients Academic year 2013 – 2014

Margaret Adamczak Hofstra University, Law

Julia Banasikowski Notre Dame, Accounting

Savannah Carr University Florida, English

Cassidee Collier Harvard, Public Policy

Jakub Deptula Catholic University of America, Media Studies & History

Marta Deptula Virginia Wesleyan College, Art & Computer Science

Piotr Filochowski Curtis Institute of Music, Music & Violin Studies

Stephanie Ichniowski NY University - Tisch School of Art, Theatre

Paulina Iracka Arizona State University, Journalism

Paul Kmiec SUNY Purchase, Filmmaking

Marcin Marszalek Simmons College, Archive Management & History

Pictures not available: Catherine Huss University of St. Thomas, Catholic Studies

Jason Tomczak University of California, History

Matthew Stefanski American University, International Relations & History

Caroline Kieltyka St. Lawrence University, Government Policy & Environment

I will do my best to repay your generosity so other students of Polish descent benefit from this wonderful opportunity. Jakub Deptula 13

Good News 2013-2014

Scholarship Requirements Fields:

Required materials:

Must be attending school full-time in the US for studies such as: • Communication • Education • Film • Music • History • International Relations • Journalism • Liberal Arts • Polish Studies • Public Relations • Graduate students in business programs whose thesis is directly related to Poland • Graduate students in all majors whose thesis is on a Polish subject Scholarships are awarded on a merit basis to full time undergraduates or graduates who are American citizens or permanent residents, preferably of Polish heritage.

• Completed application • Original school transcript(s) sent directly from the school • Detailed resume or CV • An essay “Why I Should Receive the Scholarship” (200-400 words) • An original article written by the applicant on any subject about Poland (up to 700 words) • Three original recommendation letters from teachers or others who are familiar with the academic background and the applicant’s plans for the future. These letters must be originals on letterhead stationery, signed and mailed by the faculty directly to the Institute. No copies, faxes or unsigned letters will be accepted • $10.00 check or money order made out the American Institute of Polish Culture as a nonrefundable processing fee

“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great”

Zig Zigler (1926 - 2012)

ALL REQUIRED MATERIALS MUST BE IN OUR OFFICES NO LATER THAN JULY 31ST EACH YEAR NO EXCEPTIONS PLEASE The decision will be made by September 1ST each year. All applicants will be notified by mail of their status as soon as possible after that date. If you have any questions, please contact our office at 305-864-2349 or write to Scholarship applications may be obtained by downloading them from our website at or by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope with a request to: Scholarship Applications The American Institute of Polish Culture 1440 79th Street Causeway, Suite 117 Miami, FL 33141-3555

Please note that you may apply yearly if you are still in school; however, we can only award a student once.

Good News 2013-2014


Board of Directors Meeting


in Nowy Dziennik was extremely helpful in bringing attention to our scholarship. He and Janusz Kozlowski will continue pursuing new ways to advertise the scholarship’s availability and to solicit submissions from a broader spectrum of students and schools in the United States. Other members echoed the commitment to spread the word as well.

he Board of Directors’ meeting was held on April 10, 2014 in the Sunny Isles Boardroom of the Eden Roc Hotel on Miami Beach. Lady Blanka Rosenstiel could not be present, so therefore Beata Paszyc, the Executive Director of the American Institute of Polish Culture, had the honor of presiding over the meeting. She welcomed the Board members and thanked everyone for their support. She also gave thanks to Lady Blanka for entrusting her with the Institute’s activities for the last 15 years.

Mrs. Paszyc outlined AIPC projects and activities during the past year. The first topic was the Institute’s largest fundraiser, the International Polonaise Ball. The After the Minutes from the 2013 42nd Annual Ball, held on February 1, I have found meeting were approved, Chris Garvin, 2014 at the event’s new venue, the Eden a financial advisor for UBS who is man that among its Roc Hotel, was a wonderful success. aging AIPC special accounts, briefly There were more than 380 guests at the other benefits, discussed the financial statement of evening gala and over 200 at the next the Institute. He then talked about day’s Brunch. Many guests commented what UBS has accomplished over the that the choice of the hotel ballroom, prior six months, and how UBS plans the artistic program and entertainment of the giver. to grow the finances for the organiwere superb. Ms. Paszyc thanked the zation. Mr. Garvin encouraged Board Board members who financially contrib- Maya Angelou members who did not pay memuted to the Ball’s success. She also notbership dues not only to fulfill this ed that the rising costs of hotel services, obligation, but to enroll their friends and family as Instidécor, orchestra and other expenses prevent the Institute members as well. He reminded everybody that for tute from making a large profit. She challenged the Board the last 42 years, Lady Blanka has been the major financial to become more involved by encouraging new spondonor for the Institute, and he stressed the importance of sors and giving generously, with the goal in mind that the supporting an organization whose mission is to promote 43rd Annual Ball will double the net funds raised for the Polish heritage. Institute’s mission.

giving liberates the soul

The Harriet Irsay Scholarship report was presented by Jaroslaw Rottermund. During the 2013/2014 academic year, 35 students applied for the scholarship and from the completed applications, 15 students were selected to receive a $1,000 grant. The article placed by Mr. Rottermund

Then Ms. Paszyc talked about the Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland presented at FIU in collaboration with the European Studies Program of the School of International and Public Affairs. There were three events prepared for the 2013/2014 academic year:

Mrs. Danuta Kyparisis, Mr. Chris Garvin, Mr. Jacek Schindler, Mrs. Barbara Cooper, Dr. Jerzy Kyparisis, Mr. Janusz Kozlowski, Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Mr. Steve Karski, Mrs. Inga Luksza Senis, Mr. Jaroslaw Rottermund, Mrs. Agnieszka Gray


Good News 2013-2014

Contemporary Poland by Dr. Geneviève Zubrzycki, Director of Polish Studies, CREEES, University of Michigan, was an in depth examination of the renaissance of Jewish culture in Poland and the growing interest among non-Jewish communities. Ms. Paszyc went to talk about the ongoing functions of the Institute, such as creating and publishing the Good News, keeping the website current and updated, ensuring that there are volunteers available to staff events when needed, and the importance of increasing new membership while maintaining the Institute’s valued current membership. She explained that books have been donated during the year, and how this kind of contribution keeps AIPC in the public eye and is so needed by schools, organizations and libraries.

Mr. John Sullivan, Mr. Steve Karski, Mrs. Barbara Cooper, Mrs. Inga Luksza Senis, Mr. Janusz Kozlowski

The first, a lecture by the Ambassador of Poland in November, had to be cancelled because Amb. Schnepf accompanied Vice President Joe Biden to Poland.

Radiation: a Story of Maria Sklodowska Curie, is a play performed in Polish (with English subtitles projected onto a screen) by Maria Nowotarska and Agata Pilitowska from the Polish Theater in Toronto Canada. It was another educational and artistic event drawing a full house of 170 people - FIU students and faculty and AIPC friends and members. The evening was a huge success and several requests have since come in for similar events.

Another lecture, Making Sense of the Jewish Revival in

In closing, Ms. Paszyc thanked the Board members for all of their help and encouraged them to be as proactive as possible in getting more people involved in the organization. Next, New Business was discussed, including the complete renovation of the AIPC and Chopin offices that is to take place during the summer months. Another issue on the agenda was a selection of the next Ball’s theme. There was a lively discussion involving all members, but as Lady Blanka was not present, no final decision was made. After the meeting, a delicious lunch was served and then the meeting was adjourned.

Congratulations Are in Order! It gives us great pleasure to announce that AIPC Board Member, Alexander Montague, received the prestigious 2013 Ellis Island Medal of Honor in New York City on May 27, 2013. Alex has made an enormous impact on the lives of others through his contributions and generosity to humanitarian and charitable organizations throughout the world, regardless of culture, creed and country. His ongoing service aptly represents the ideals of this award. The National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (NECO) was created with the conviction that the diversity of the American people is what makes this nation great. Its mission is to honor and preserve this diversity and to foster tolerance, respect and understanding among religious and ethnic groups. Every year, NECO awards Americans from all walks of life to join the dozens of others who have come before them. Among the list of awardees are military generals, heads of state, sports legends, authors, artists, well-known performers and celebrities, as well as many other citizens who meet the criteria set forth by for the award. A worthy recipient lives a life dedicated to helping others, whether at a community or national level; preserves and celebrates the history, traditions and values of their ancestry group while providing themselves valuable citizens of the US; strives for tolerance and acceptance between ethnic, racial and religious groups in the US and abroad; and shares their personal and/or professional gifts for the benefit of humanity.

All of us at the Institute are honored that Alex has been part of our mission for many years. Congratulations for this much deserved recognition! To learn more about NECO and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, you can access their website at

Good News 2013-2014


877 440 1950 Miami office 1111 Brickell Avenue 11th Floor Miami, FL 33131

Ft. Lauderdale office 2801 NW 55th Ct Building 5w Ft. Lauderdale, Fl 33309

New Construction Re-roofing Leak Repairs Maintenace Services Solar Systems Waterproofing Rain Water Harvesting Roof Cleaning Skylights Gutters Installations Licensed & Insured CCC 1325516 CGC 1507049


Good News 2013-2014

Good News 2013-2014


Consular Information


his year marks the 10th anniversary of Poland joining the European Union in 2004. Since joining, many regulations and laws have been changed and amended; some of these changes relate to the application procedure for passports and visas. Effective June 2009, there is a requirement to appear in person before the Consul General to submit one’s passport application because fingerprints must be collected for the biometric database, which can only be done through Consulate Generals. However, in order to assist Polish citizens, the Consulate General in Washington, D.C. schedules visits of Consuls who are able to receive applicants in other states and cities in their jurisdiction, including the Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Miami. Consul Ewa Pietrasieńska and Mrs. Julia Konowrocki came

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Consul General Piotr Konowrocki, Hon. Vice Consul Beata Paszyc

to Florida in November of 2013, and March and May 2014 so Polish citizens could apply for passports during their visits. To make an appointment, applicants must contact the Consulate General in Washington, D.C. All of the information about passport applications for Polish citizens is available on the Polish version of the Embassy’s website: Consul Piotr Konowrocki, the Head of Consular Division in Washington D.C., visited the Honorary Consulate in Miami on February 25, 2014. He congratulated Hon. Consul Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and Hon. Vice Consul Beata Paszyc for their excellent service, hard work and dedication, often going beyond the call of duty to help Polish citizens. During the meeting, the Consuls also discussed the new regulations, their work and they expressed some of the concerns of Polish citizens and planned further cooperation between the two offices.

Consul Ewa Pietrasieńska, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mrs. Julia Konowrocki

As mandated by the Consular Section of the Embassy of the Republic of Poland, as of May 15, 2014 all Schengen States’ consulates, including Poland, in the U.S. will use the Visa Information System (VIS). The VIS is a central database for the exchange of data on short-stay visas (up to three months), with the objective to facilitate visa application procedures and checks at external borders as well as to enhance security.

For the purpose of the VIS, applicants will be required to provide their biometric data (fingerprints and a digital photograph) when applying for a Schengen visa. It is a simple and discreet procedure that only takes a few minutes. Biometric data, along with the data provided in the Schengen visa application form, will be recorded in the VIS central database. This technology will better protect visa applicants against identity theft and prevent false identifications, which in certain cases can lead to a refusal of a visa or entry to a person who is entitled to enter. Therefore, first-time visa applicants traveling to Poland who need a visa will have to appear in person when submitting an application in order to provide their fingerprints at the Consulate General. For any applications submitted within 5 years thereafter, the fingerprints already in the system can be used.

For more information on applying for a visa, please go to


Good News 2013-2014

Konsulat Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej Consulate of the Republic of Poland BLANKA A. ROSENSTIEL – HONORARY CONSUL

The Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland was established in October 1998. Honorary Consul Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and her deputy, Honorary Vice Consul Beata Paszyc, provide information and perform consular services free of charge. Although, the Honorary Consulate cannot by law issue, sign or verify any documents, we do provide general information. The recent changes in the law require that all passport applications MUST be submitted in person at the Consulates General in the appropriate territorial jurisdiction. However, the Consulate General in Washington, D.C. organizes trips to different locations including Miami, FL to enable Polish citizens to submit passport applications in person closer to their residence. The locations, dates and times are provided at the Embassy’s website:

Foreigners traveling to Poland who require a visa can also find all the information on the website and need to apply online as well as in person either in Washington, D.C. or at the Honorary Consulate in Miami, by appointment only. All documents are processed at the consular offices serving the state of residence in conformity with their territorial jurisdiction. Please refer to the list of Polish Consulates in the US. The Embassy of the Republic of Poland’s motto:

“To serve Poland – to build Europe – to understand the world” Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in New York, NEW YORK Consul General Ewa Junczyk-Ziomecka 233 Madison Avenue New York, NY 10016 phone: (646) 237-2100, (212) 686-1541 fax: (646) 237-2105, (212) 686-3219 e-mail:

Consular Division of the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in WASHINGTON, DC Head of Consular Division Piotr Konowrocki 2224 Wyoming Avenue N.W. Washington, DC 20008-3992 phone: (202) 234-3800 fax (202) 328-2152 e-mail: The Consular Division in Washington DC serves residents of Alabama, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Puerto Rico, American Virgin Islands and other US overseas territories.

Consulate General in New York, serves residents of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont.

Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Los Angeles, CALIFORNIA Consul General Joanna Kozińska-Frybes 12400 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 555 Los Angeles, CA 90025 phone: (310) 442-8500 fax (310) 442-8515 e-mail:

Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, ILLINOIS Consul General Zygmunt Matynia 1530 N. Lake Shore Drive Chicago, IL 60610 phone: (312) 337-8166 fax (312) 337-7841 e-mail:

Consulate General in Los Angeles, serves residents of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming.

Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, serves residents of Arkansas, Illinois, Indian, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin.

1440 79th Street Causeway, Suite 117 Miami, Florida 33141 Phone: (305) 866-0077 Fax: (305) 865-5150 E-mail:

Good News 2013-2014


Consular Meetings


he Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland regularly participates in Consular Corps meetings in Miami. These gatherings provide an excellent platform for Consuls from all over the world, as well as local business leaders and government officials, to discuss issues pertaining to consular activities and multinational collaborations. Speakers representing U.S. government, local and state authorities, scientists, educators and representatives of various businesses provide valuable information in the areas of their expertise. Some of

the fascinating speakers have included Ms. Karen Gilmore, Vice President and Regional Executive of Federal Reserve Bank; Mr. Thomas Regalado, the Mayor of the City of Miami; and Mr. Larry Williams, President and CEO of the Beacon Council. The meetings are a great occasion for Poland to be recognized as part of the dynamic international community represented in Florida. There are also many diplomatic, commercial, cultural and social functions in which the Honorary Consulate participates and promotes Poland in South Florida and the U.S.

Mr. Jose Antonio Zabalgoitia, Consul General of Mexico; Mr. Volkan Karagoz, Consul General of Turkey; Mr. Manuel Molina, Hon. Consul of Belgium; Mrs. Nathalie OlijslagerJaarsma, Consul General of the Netherlands; Mr. Philippe Letrilliart, Consul General of France

Mr. Sam Gonas, Esq., Mr. George De Pozsgay, Hon. Consul of Hungary; Mrs. Cami Green Hofstadter, Hon. Consul of Finland; Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Hon. Vice Consul of Poland; Ms. Joanna Tsuhuei Chang, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office

Did you know… A Consul is an official appointed by the government of one nation to look after the welfare of its citizens and its commercial interests in another country. Consular Work has a long, varied and most interesting development as it has evolved with a rich history of 2,524 years. Consuls date back to antiquity. The institution of Honorary Consuls had been regulated by customary law for centuries until Consular functions were defined and classified by the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations in 1963. Consul History Benchmarks Century Development 5th B.C. Eighth Twelfth Sixteenth Eighteenth Nineteenth Twentieth

1906 1928 1932 1949

1958 1961 1963

Greece posts citizens of host state as their representatives Rome calls their elected leaders “consuls” with creation of the Roman Empire Consular system in Asia Figure of today’s consuls in Europe Modern system of consulship begins to take form First career consuls in France; Establishment of first Consular Corps (France) Great Britain establishes is consular service; Consular system expanded around the world US grades its Consular Corps, E.O. by President Theodore Roosevelt Havana Convention - codification and privileges of diplomatic agents Harvard Law Institute - codification and privileges of diplomatic agents Yugoslavia proposes priority for codification of international law, U.N. General Assembly assigns petition to its International Law Commission U.N. General Assembly requests convention on International Relations Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations Vienna Convention on Consular Relations

Excepted from an article, “The Consul: A Brief History” by Manuel Morales, Jr., Consul General (Hon.) of Japan Reprinted with permission of The Forum, official publication of Consular Corps College, Vol. 1 No. 1, 2014.


Good News 2013-2014

Notes from My Travels By Lady Blanka Rosenstiel


pring arrived, and with some trepidation, I was driving to my farm in Virginia after seven months of absence. When I leave for the winter season, I leave with a bit of sadness and the hope for a safe return.

If you have never been on a trip by car from Miami to Charlottesville, it is really worth trying. It is is is rather relaxing going through five states on SR 95 looking at the beautiful countryside and passing cities. And all it takes is about 14 hours of driving time! I usually start around 11:00 a.m., stop at a few road rests and drive until about 8:00 p.m., when I’ll stay in a good motel for the night. The next morning I try to leave about 8:00 a.m. and reach Charlottesville, turning in Richmond onto Route 64 West by 2:00 p.m. Would you believe me when I say that while I drive for some 1,050 miles, I do not encounter one red light? What a change from big city driving!

Amb. John Davis, Mrs. Helen Davis, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mr. Marcin Cejrowski, Mr. Leszek Platta

months I spend there every year. There are lectures at the University of Virginia, concerts, exhibitions, the summer Opera festival at Ash Lawn (I am on the Board of Directors), various theatre all makes a community where one should feel blessed to be living in!

Charlottesville is a beautiful small city where history abounds and life is lived on the highest cultural level. It is a city developed during the time of Thomas Jefferson in the 1770’s, who built his home Monticello, which is now a museum. Jefferson was the architect of the Rotunda at the University of Virginia with hundreds of white columns (designed in the style he called American Palladianism) dotting the expansive lawn, where all important student events are held. Virginia is known as the “aristocratic state” for its history in the beginning of America, its large estates, mansions with columned porticos, but also for its beautiful rolling hills. I was lucky enough to discover Charlottesville in 1978 and purchased a large farm there as a summer home and to house my thoroughbred horses.

When I arrived I immediately got involved in the necessary work at the farm as reported by my manager. There were horses and dogs to check on, and the large float in the lake had to be inspected because it always needs repairs. I walked through the fruit orchards and the flower and vegetable gardens, and as usual, found a lot had been waiting for improvement at my return. But the more pleasurable activities seemed to take priority. Many dinners, concerts and events were organized by my friends. In Barboursville, Robert and Cindy Joskowiak were celebrating the 10th anniversary of cooperation with our Chopin Foundation by presenting Claire Huangci in recital. Ms. Huangci, who was superb, is the winner of the 2010 National Chopin Competition in Miami. It was an elegant, black-tie concert followed by a delightful candlelight dinner with ample supplies of wine from the renowned Barboursville Vineyards. Prof. Marek Chodakiewicz came from Washington, DC and a few friends from Charlottesville also attended with me.

Charlottesville is filled with cultural events and I have had the pleasure to participate in many of them during the six

Soon after I had house guests - Mr. Slawek Platta from New York and Messrs. Leszek Platta and Marcin Cejrowski from Poland, and with local friends - the former Ambassador to Poland, Mr. John and Mrs. Helen Davis, Dr. Marian and Prof. Maria Pospieszalski, Dr. Phil and Mrs. Marilyn Williams, Dr. Robert and Mrs. Janice Chevalier and Mrs. Joanna Tyka - we had a very special champagne dinner where lively conversation continued into the late hours. Good News 2013-2014


Prof. Maria Pospieszalski, Mrs. Joanna Tyka, Prof. Marek Chodakiewicz, Lady Blanka

Mrs. Virginia Cenedella, Lady Blanka

Ms. Content Sablinsky, Ms. Madison West

I was invited to attend a celebration of Poland’s Constitution Day and the 25th Anniversary of the Freedom and Democracy at the residence of the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland, Mr. Ryszard Schnepf, in Washington, DC. Approximately 250 guests attended and Ambassador and Mrs. Schnepf graciously received them all. There were moving and patriotic speeches given by the Ambassador, as well as the Secretary of State, Mr. Chuck Hagel (who happens to be of Polish descent!). The guests, among them the newly married Mr. Wladek Zachariasiewicz (who is 102 years old) with his bride, Sandra, were enthusiastic and very pleased to find a copious buffet of delicious Polish foods and wines.

Mr. Robert Joskowiak, Lady Blanka, Ms. Claire Huangci, Mrs. Cindy Joskowiak, Mr. Christian Joskowiak

from Stamford, CT, Mrs. Joanna Tyka, Dr. Maria Michejda, and Mrs. Kasia Zawistowski from Washington DC - and a few local Polish friends who all added to the festivity of cherrypicking. The large terrace overlooking the lake was the perfect place for everyone to enjoy a warm Spring day. And that was not all! There was another garden party with beautifully bedecked sun hats and elegant dresses hosted by the English Speaking Union at the home of Mr. William and Mrs. Patricia Taylor. It was a most enjoyable Sunday evening. Friends of mine who are originally from Miami, Mrs. Mary Forte and her sister Anna, had acquired a farm in The Plains, Virginia. Named Cedar Hill, Mary’s Alpacas, it is a breeding, show and fleecing farm, and is a fun place to visit. Do you know anything about alpacas? They are adorable and prized for their luxurious fleece that is woven into one of the world’s finest and softest wools. One of the cria (what babies are called) is named for my brother Waldemar! Mary came to my farm for lunch and we had such a good time. She is a wonderful business woman who I admire very much. And she speaks a few words in Polish - she has a Polish heritage too!

Back in Charlottesville, I joined Mrs. Virginia Cenedella at a concert presented by the Wednesday Music Club (whose President is Ms. Lynne Blair) at the private residence “Casa Maria” of Mrs. Cynthia Tremblay. Ms. Madison West, a young and graceful violinist, played with deep feeling and exceptional talent and was accompanied by pianist Ms. Content Sablinsky. After Beethoven and Tchaikovsky, she played a delightful but difficult composition, “Scherzo-Taratello, Op.16” by Wieniawski. I was very happy to hear such loud, appreciative applause. The light buffet dinner that followed gave all of us the opportunity to meet new friends and hear about plans for the future of this lovely organization.

Finally there was a charming candlelight birthday dinner on the terrace of the Farmington Country Club given by Mr. John Waterson for his beloved wife, Yvonne. It was an unforgettable ending to my brief stay in the glorious rolling hills of Virginia.

For many years I have hosted a special party in early June that I call “The Champagne Cherry Picking Party,” as the cherry trees are ready to be picked. This year we decided to combine it with a brief meeting of our Homeowners’ Association’s Board of Directors. The weather cooperated, it was sunny and comfortable, and many neighbors living on the farm attended. The meeting was jovial, champagne flowed and the snacks prepared by my cook, Maria Blacha, found many willing gourmands. I had a few house guests from Richmond - Mr. Ellwsorth and Mrs. JoAnn Benson, III

There could have been many more parties and events, but after all, I planned to be in Charlottesville for rest and a respite from every day obligations in Miami. It was time to start thinking about my return drive. I thank God for having so many good friends and charming acquaintances and for the opportunity to see Spring in its glory at Blandemar Farm Estates.

Blandemar Farm is an historic home built on 4,000 acres in 1790 for Colonel Charles Lewis, a friend of Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson said of Lewis..."one of the early patriots who stepped forward in the commencement of the Revolution, and commanded one of the first regiments in Virginia."


Good News 2013-2014

The Polish Lecture Series at the University of Virginia By Dr. David Herman


he University of Virginia’s Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES) is happy to report that 2103-14 witnessed a collection of unusually high-quality lectures in its Polish Lecture Series. Endowed through the kind generosity of Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and the American Institute of Polish Culture, and run by CREEES in consultation with Associate Professor Dariusz Tolczyk of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, the Series sponsors a variety of Polish-themed talks that expose American students and the Central Virginia community to the riches of Polish culture, history, and politics. The lectures complement Polish area studies courses offered at the University, which in the last few years have included Introductory Polish Language, Intermediate Polish Language, Graduate Seminar in Polish Literature, Poland: History and Culture, Eastern Europe through Literature and Film, and Understanding Eastern Europe (both of the latter centering on Poland but branching out to other Eastern European countries). The series gives the University of Virginia the ability to invite leading North American and European scholars in Polish area studies and strives to overcome the traditional blind spot in American cultural consciousness about Eastern Europe, which is too often unthinkingly equated with, and reduced to, merely Russian culture. Virginia is committed to breaking this stereotype. The series got off to a rousing start in September 2013 with the lively and engaging talk of Professor Piotr Kosicki of the History Department at the University of Maryland. Prof. Kosicki was formerly an ACLS/Mellon New Faculty Fellow in the Corcoran Department of History at the University of Virginia and is the recent recipient of a prestigious W. Glenn Campbell and Rita Ricardo-Campbell National Fellowship at the Hoover Institution at Stanford, as well as the editor, with Justyna Beinek, of Re-mapping Polish-German Historical Memory: Physical, Political, and Literary Spaces since World War II (Slavica, 2011). Prof. Kosicki addressed the paradox of communist-era Polish Catholic activists who operated both within limits set down by the state and yet remained active in international organizations that reached far outside Eastern Europe. November 2013 witnessed an event, although not directly sponsored by Lecture Series funds but closely related in spirit, as Maria Ivanova, Ph.D. (Moscow State University and an Instructor of Polish and Russian in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures), read a fascinating paper on “Ars Dissimulandi: The Early Modern Ruthenian Art of Dissimulation in Byzantine Perspective.” A specialist in Ruthenian thought of the 16th and 17th centuries, Ms. Ivanova looked at the understanding of lying, prevaricating, and remaining strategically silent in the theory and praxis of writers from early modern Ruthenia (referring to the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, nowadays Ukraine, Belarus, and Poland), including Melecjusz Smotrycki and Szymon Budny. On February 20, 2014, Professor Beth Holmgren of Duke University gave a delightful talk that brought smiles to all faces - “A Refining Palette: Good News 2013-2014


Ambassador John Davis

Children’s Book Illustration in Poland, 1960s1970s.” The speaker is a leading US Polonist and the author, most recently, of Starring Madame Modejska: On Tour in Poland and America (Indiana University Press, 2011). In her talk, which was richly illustrated with excerpts from her personal collection of Polish children’s books, Prof. Holmgren explored the liberating function performed by the renowned graphic art of Polish children’s literature. These graphics inspired the Polish youth of the 60’s and 70’s to use their imaginations freely, without boundaries and without fear of repercussions, by parading before them sophisticated, vibrant, and often grotesque or satiric images. Undoubtedly the highlight of the year was the April presentation by Ambassador John Davis, Chief of Mission of the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw from 1983 to 1990, a tenure which overlooked the rise of Solidarność and the collapse of communism. In his talk (videotaped and available on the CREEES site, Ambassador Davis, who generally knew firsthand and, in some cases, was good friends, a confidant and advisor to many of the Solidarity leaders (and not a few Polish government figures), showed his remarkable collection of personal photos from that time. He reminisced about the many small steps that led to the gradual dismantling of Polish communism, the first step in the collapse of communism across Europe, under Solidarity’s grassroots pressure, as well as his own low-key

hildren’s Book Illustration in Poland, 1960s-1970s of the most important labor of his career with the unfolding tale of one of the greatest turning-points in 20th-century history. At the end, some members of the audience were in tears. Because a key method of the Series is to build on courses offered at the University in a given semester, this year was one of the quietest in recent memory. This was not due to any decline of interest in Poland, but because of a quirk of scheduling. By chance, 5 of 12 Slavic-area faculty members and, more importantly, all of the History and Politics faculty happened to be on leave at the same time. This drastically reduced the usual number of Eastern European course offerings and consequently the number of students thinking about Eastern Europe and primed to attend thought-provoking lectures.

Polish children’s book illustration 1960’s - 70’s

Beth Holmgren

However, the program will be back in full force next year. One of the leading American practitioners of polonistyka, Clare Cavanagh, a distinguished Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures from Northwestern University and author of the prize-winning Lyric Poetry and Modern Politics: Russia, Poland, and the West (Yale University Press, 2010) as well as an acclaimed translator of contemporary Polish poetry, has already agreed to speak. This is just a preview of the diverse and cutting edge lecture series we are preparing for next season. CREEES takes great pleasure in acknowledging the generosity of

Professor ofrole Slavic and but important behind the Eurasian scenes. DavisStudies argued the American Institute of Polish Culture and above all its President, University that radical butDuke peaceful change is possible within Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, in supporting the Polish Lecture Series at societies when certain preconditions are in place and the University of Virginia. For years the Series has made it possible THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014, 5 PM both sides are willing to commit themselves to certain for us to share the wealth of Polish culture and history with eager MONROE 122

standards of behavior. But perhaps most moving was undergraduates and graduate students from a number of disciplines ers took the art worldthe bypersonal storm inside the of 1960s and 1970s, but relatively few non-Poles realizemembers of our Central Virginia community. simply the event, as a now retired as well as interested ecades also marked a golden agehis inlife Polish book illustration. PrewarWe masters and postwar man looked back on and interwove recollections are deeply grateful. treated Polish children to a parade of sophisticated, vibrant, and often grotesque images in e books. This lecture/show demonstrates how Polish illustrators conditioned children to Herman his Ph.D atthem the University of California, Berkeley 1993. He is currently an Asore playful worlds than the drab Dr. oneDavid in which theyreceived lived, connecting early on with the sociate Professor, Chair of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, and Director of the Cenhe theatrical, and the absurd. Specific illustrators highlighted include Janusz Stanny, Olga ter for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies at the University of Virginia. Dr. Herman has received and Bohdan Butenko. numerous awards, including the U.C. Berkeley Distinguished Graduate Student Instructor Award, and has olish Lecture Series: Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies published articles for journals such as the Slavic Review and the Russian Review.

Did you know… Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, Polish posters were not unified in craft or style, but represented the entire scope of artistic expression under horrific suppression. After Stalin’s death in 1953, the chokehold was lightened for the visual arts in Poland and poster art flourished. Since there was no longer intense scrutiny of creative output, artists produced powerful images depicting their individual beliefs or popular topics. Many posters contained subtle, and sometimes blatant, messages denouncing Poland’s oppressors but executed with beautiful painterly qualities using superb graphics, strong color combinations, and bold lettering that made them stand out throughout the world. To this day, Polish poster art is highly regarded and holds a unique and compelling place in the history of the form.


Good News 2013-2014

Poland’s Fight for Freedom By Pawel P. Styrna 1939 August 22 – 23: National Socialist Germany and the Soviet Union sign the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact in Moscow, thereby partitioning Poland and Central and Eastern Europe and providing Hitler with a “green light” to spark the war. September 1: Germany invades Poland without a declaration of war. September 3: Britain and France declare war on Germany, but Poland’s allies fail to come to her aid.

7 5 t h An n ive rs ar y of W W I I

September 17: The Soviets invade Poland from the east to seize the spoils secretly promised them by their Nazi allies.

The Katyn Forest Massacre

April – May: The Soviets murder approximately 26,000 members of the Polish elite, including military officers, policemen, teachers, and officials, during the Katyn Forest Massacre. This genocidal slaughter actually occurred at several execution sites in the USSR. Afterwards, the killing continues - slowly in the Gulag and swiftly as the Soviets evacuate prisoners in the summer of 1941. Meanwhile, the Germans exterminate by shooting about 40,000 of the Polish elite starting in September 1939 and ending in June 1941. Others are sent to concentration camps, where many die. May: First Polish political prisoners begin to arrive at the Auschwitz concentration camp.

1943 June 22: The Germans launch “Operation Barbarossa,” attacking their erstwhile Soviet ally. July 30: The Sikorski-Mayski Agreement signed in London between Poland and the USSR. Relations between the two countries are officially reestablished. The desperate Soviets agreed reluctantly to release some Polish prisoners, who would later form the core of the army of Gen. Władysław Anders.

The signing of the Nazi-Soviet Pact

October 2 - 6: The Germans defeat the Polish “Polesie Group” at Kock, the last battle of the September Campaign fought between regular forces.


November 6: The Germans arrest 184 Polish academics—professors at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków— deporting them to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp. Known as Sonderaktion Krakau (“Special Operation Kraków”). This wave of arrests was part of the combined German-Soviet effort to exterminate Poland’s elites. Good News 2013-2014


February 9 – late 1944: The Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) conducts a bloody ethnic cleansing campaign against Poles in Volhynia and Eastern Greater Poland, slaughtering approximately 100,000 – 150,000 Polish men, women, and children. 26

Poland’s Fight for Freedom April: The Germans discover the bodies of exterminated Poles at Katyn, making a public announcement to this effect. The Soviets accused the Germans of this atrocity, but, once the Polish government of Gen. Władysław Sikorski requested an international Red Cross investigation, Moscow severed relations with the Poles.

legal Polish administration prior to the entry of the Soviets. Tempest continues into the Spring of 1945, when the very same anti-Nazi insurgents commence their antiCommunist offensive to free Poland from Soviet occupation. Much of the countryside is initially freed, but the Red Army and secret police with their local stooges strike back and put the insurgents on the defensive. It will take years to pacify the countryside.

April 19 – May 16: The Warsaw Ghetto revolts against the German attempts to transport the Jews remaining in the ghetto to the death camps. About 13,000 Jews perish and another 57,000 are deported.

1944 January 4, 1944 – Spring 1945: The Polish Underground State launches “Operation Tempest” (Operacja Burza) to free Poland from the German invaders and establish a

7 5 t h An n ive rs ar y of W W I I

The Germans crush the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising (1943)

May 18: Free Polish forces take Monte Cassino in Italy following many failed Allied assaults on the German strong hold. July 22: The issuing of the Manifesto of the Polish Committee of National Liberation, a Soviet puppet government, in Lublin. August 1 – October 2: The Warsaw Uprising, in accordance with “Operation Tempest,” the Home Army rises against the Germans in Warsaw. The Red Army, deployed on the other side of the Vistula River, stood by and allowed the Free Poles to be wiped out. As a result, Warsaw was destroyed and approximately 150,000 – 200,000 Polish civilians massacred.

1945 January 17: The Soviets occupy Warsaw and after 3 months mercilessly leave remaining citizen to die. May 8: The Third Reich officially capitulates. Poland is now truncated and lost approximately 11 million citizens to extermination, expulsion, deportation, and flight. Between 5 to 6 million of her people perished, including between 2 to 3 million Christians and about 3 million Jews. The anti-Communist insurgency is in full swing.

Between 5 to 6 million

in Poland perished, including between

2 to 3 million Christians and about 3 million Jews. Warsaw after uprising. 85% of the city was destroyed


Good News 2013-2014

The Jewish Revival in Contemporary Poland By Jason Chohonis society. She explained how Jews are viewed as both “other” and “indigenous” in Poland, but by recovering Jewish history, progressive Poles can build pluralism and promote a model of the nation that is open regardless of ethnicity or race or creed. Poland’s attempts to build a civic nation, as opposed to a nation that is defined by ethnicity and religious creed, can be seen in the non-Jewish Poles’ appreciation and celebration of Jewish culture. From festivals celebrating Jewish food and music, the notion of Polish and Jewish identity continues to be intertwined and featured in political discourse. In a country with a complicated historical past, the idea of national identity continues to evolve and shift as Poles engage with their own historical legacy. With scholars such as Dr. Zubrzycki exploring the sociological and historical conditions that affect Poland today, Poland’s future, past, and national identity will be easier for scholars and students on either side of the Atlantic to understand and interpret.

Dr. Geneviève Zubrzycki


iami-Florida European Union Center of Excellence (MEUCE) takes an active role in educating the Florida International University (FIU) student body and Miami community at large about a bevy of issues that pertain to the contemporary European Union (EU). On February 4, 2014, MEUCE, as part of The Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland, hosted Dr. Geneviève Zubrzycki, an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan, who presented a lecture entitled Making Sense of the Jewish Revival in Contemporary Poland to an attentive crowd of FIU students and assorted professors. Dr. Zubrzycki, who also serves as Director of the Copernicus Program in Polish Studies and a Faculty Associate at the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies at Michigan, focuses her research on national identity, religion, collective memory, mythology and the politics of commemorations, and the place of religious symbols in the public sphere. Her award-winning book, The Crosses of Auschwitz: Nationalism and Religion in Post-Communist Poland, examines the historical memory of the Holocaust in post-communist Poland. Her latest book project delves into why there now exists a fascination with the Jewish culture in Poland, as is evidenced by a growing number of festivals and institutions affiliated with the Jewish religion and culture.

Dr. Stanislaw Wnuk, Dr. Rebecca Friedman, Dr. Geneviève Zubrzycki, Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Dr. Tudor Parfitt

Jason Chohonis is a Master’s candidate in FIU’s History Department and a graduate assistant with the Miami-Florida European Union Center of Excellence (MEUCE). His current responsibilities include the creation of a periodic newsletter for MEUCE to inform the public about the many opportunities available for those interested in Europe. He can be reached at

Poland today, unlike the Poland of 1931, is much more homogenous in ethnicity and religion, with 96% of the population identifying as ethnic Polish and 95% as Catholic. Dr. Zubrzycki informed students that a political debate currently exists within Poland over whether or not a pluralistic society can exist in such a homogenous nation. Dr. Zubrzycki postulates that for many, the historical presence of Jews in Poland is evidence that it can most definitely be a pluralistic Good News 2013-2014


Warsaw Uprising 1944 By Paweł P. Styrna

Peace is a valuable and desirable thing. Our generation, which has spilled so much blood in [numerous] wars, certainly deserves a period of

peace. But peace, like all the things in this one, but nevertheless a measurable one. We here in Poland are not familiar with the concept of peace at any price. There is only one thing in the lives of people, nations, and countries that is priceless. That thing is honor. Józef Beck (May 5, 1939)


he fate of the Warsaw Uprising of 1944 was, in many important ways, a reflection of the larger fate of Poland during WWII. The Warsaw Insurgents, much like the Polish Military in September and early October 1939, fought heroically against superior odds, sandwiched between two hostile invaders: - the German Nazis and the Soviet Communists. The Polish capital, like much of Poland, was largely devastated and many civilian inhabitants massacred, not to mention the slaughter of legions of Polish officers, soldiers, and resistance fighters – one of the most patriotic elements of the nation. Poles generally regret this massive bloodletting to which their nation was subjected during and after WWII. At the same time, they are intensely proud of the heroism and sacrifice of their ancestors who stood up to the fierce power and unbridled brutality of the two totalitarian enemies of their nation. Thus, they commemorate the Warsaw Uprising in spite of its failure and the accompanying destruction.

70 t h An nive rs ar y of Wars aw Upr is ing

world, has its price – certainly a high

The objective of Operation Tempest was to attack the retreating German forces and to reestablish a legitimate Polish administration in areas liberated by the Home Army, thereby denying the Soviets the ability to impose their own “order.” Since this amounted to an attempt to cooperate with the Soviets in spite of the Soviets, it was a departure from the traditional apPW or Anchor symbol of proach of the Polish anti-NaHome Army’s zi, anti-Soviet underground “Poland Fighting” resistance – the “principle of two enemies” – which maintained that both totalitarian regimes were equally detrimental to Polish independence. Helping either occupier against the other was not in the Polish interest. Since the Poles could not defeat both enemies, they should lay low and allow the Germans and Soviets to spill as much of each other’s blood as possible. However, General Tadeusz Bór-Komorowski, the commander of the AK, argued that such a stance would “clear all obstacles” preventing Moscow from “fabricating the impression of Polish popular support for the creation of a seventeenth [Polish] Soviet Republic [i.e., direct incorporation into the USSR].” A related motive behind Operation Tempest was to debunk, once and for all, the communist-manufactured propaganda canard (which enjoyed much currency in the West because of agents of influence and useful idiots) that the reluctance of the Polish independentist underground to sacrifice itself and Polish civilians to assist Moscow made the Polish resistance nothing more than “fascist” sympathizers and “Nazi collaborators.” In other words, communist propaganda goaded the Polish Underground State into acting against its own best interests.

The rising broke out in Warsaw, which had been under Nazi German occupation for almost five years, on August 1, 1944 and lasted until October 2nd, a total duration of sixty-three days! The insurrection was part of Operation Tempest (Burza) launched by the Home Army (AK) on January 4, 1944 when the Red Army, then driving the Germans westward, crossed the prewar Soviet-Polish frontier in the area of Sarny in Volhynia. 29

Good News 2013-2014

airdrop arms and ammunition to the Poles. Although much of this aid fell into German hands, a number of Allied airmen were killed during this operation, the failure of which was ensured by Soviet hostility to the airdrop.

In spite of all this, Gen. Bór-Komorowski decided to launch an uprising in Warsaw on August 1st. Initially the Poles temporarily recaptured much of their capital, especially the Old Town and City Center. Freedom and happiness once again reigned in the liberated parts of Warsaw. Meanwhile, the Red Army halted to the east of Warsaw. The communists had previously encouraged the Home Army to rise against the Germans, but the Soviets had no intentions of helping the Poles. Stalin was quite happy to exterminate the Polish resistance with German hands. The Nazis, however, had planned for the eventuality of a Polish uprising. They also had plenty of frontline units deployed in the Warsaw area. Soon, after bringing up reinforcements, the Germans counter-attacked (their forces included Russian, White Ruthenian, and Azeri auxiliaries).

70 t h Ann ive rs ar y of Wars aw Upr isi ng

From the very outset it became clear that Operation Tempest was becoming a victim of Murphy’s Law (“if something can go bad, it probably will”). Thus, in January 1944 in Sarny, the underground Polish county head (Starosta), upon introducing himself to the Soviet commander, was told bluntly, “What kind of a Starosta are you? You are a fool, Comrade.” As the Red Army occupied the lands of the Second Republic, the infamous Smersh and NKVD units captured, deported, and massacred Polish resistance fighters by the thousands. Even the AK units which helped the Soviets expel the Germans from Wilno on July 13, 1944 did not escape this fate. The AK officers were lured by the Bolsheviks under the false pretense of “negotiations,” seized, and deported to the Soviet interior, as were the remaining Home Army soldiers in Wilno. The Soviets recognized no legal niceties, only the Machiavellian dialectic of power and force.

As the Germans suppressed the uprising, their vengeance and brutality knew no bounds. They massacred approximately 200,000 civilians, expelling the rest from Warsaw (some of the expellees were deported to concentration camps, where they perished). The barbaric Nazis also systematically destroyed many of the city’s buildings – using flamethrowers and explosives – taking special care to demolish anything of significance to Poland’s cultural heritage.

The Poles defended themselves valiantly for over two months, contesting every square meter of the city, but they were left to their own devices in a hopeless situation. The Soviets, who eventually captured the Praga District of eastern Warsaw on September 14th, stood by on the banks of the Vistula River. The Western Allies viewed any assistance to the insurrectionists as a waste of military resources, but they nevertheless conducted a series of missions (as part of Operation “Frantic”) to Good News 2013-2014


Today Poles continue to debate the prudence of the decision to launch an uprising in Warsaw in August 1944. Some, particularly the heirs of the romantic-insurrectionary tradition, argue that the rising demonstrated the Poles’ willingness to resist foreign occupation and delayed the Red army’s westward march into Europe. Others point to the death and destruction, in addition to the fact that thousands of patriotic Polish freedom-fighters sacrificed their lives in the uprising. Regardless of how one judges the decision of the Polish leadership at the time, it is necessary to recognize that the Warsaw Insurrectionists fought and died so that Poland could be free. Hence, “glory to the heroes!”

Jewish prisoners of the Gęsiówka Concentration Camp liberated by the AK’s “Zośka” Battalion

Paweł Styrna earned his MA in modern European history from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2009. He works as a researcher for the Kościuszko Chair in Polish Studies at IWP, where he is also pursing an MA in Statecraft and International Politics. Mr. Styrna is the editor and co-author of Golden Harvest or Hearts of Gold? Studies on the Fate of Wartime Poles and Jews (2012), and is currently working on a monograph of the attitude of The New York Times toward Poland and a biography of prewar industrialist, Leopold Wellisz. He has also authored numerous book reviews for the journals Glaukopis and Sarmatian Review.

Code Name: Zegota By Irene Tomaszewski and Tecia Werbowski


After the death sentence was decreed for anyone helping Jews, Poles were exhorted in clandestine publications to defy this “law,” but initially no general strategy to do so was developed. By the summer of 1942, about a million of the Jews in Poland were dead. They had died of disease, starvation and random massacres, but after the German entry into the Soviet zone, they were systematically killed in mass executions.

he Underground movement in Poland arose spontaneously and regionally as soon as the German occupation began. Polish officers and soldiers who had not been put in prisoner-of-war camps buried their uniforms and their arms, then met secretly in their neighbourhoods to plan resistance. Cells were composed of men and women from established political parties, from former army units, or simply from their home districts. Eventually all of these small units, excluding the Communists on the extreme left and the fascists on the extreme right, united under one command. The military arm later became known as the Home Army – the AK (Armia Krajowa) – one facet of what became in reality an underground state.

For a long time, the leading members of the Jewish community and most of the Jewish population believed that their only hope lay in obeying German edicts until liberated by the Allies. It was hard to believe that the Germans planned the murder of an entire nation. The Germans kept hopes alive with constant reassurances that those being deported were only being “resettled,” and that once the required quota for resettlement was met, further deportations would stop. To reinforce their belief that they were only being resettled, Jews being transported were given extra rations of food and they were allowed to pack some belongings. The station at Treblinka was built complete with rest rooms and “Arrival” and “Departure” schedules. There were no departures. To further support this fiction, the Germans forced those who had been deported to write cards and letters describing their new and happy life in agrarian communities in the east.

Resistance was not new to Poles. From the late 1700’s, to 1918, their country had been partitioned and occupied by the Germans, the Russians, and the Austrians. But Poles had never accepted foreign rule, resisting, regardless of the cost. They resisted again, but no one at first expected the perversions and savagery that would be directed against the entire population. Nor was it immediately apparent that this time Germany was determined to carry out the unprecedented biological destruction of entire nations, most notably the Jews. Even in the context of daily terror, it was not long before the special brutality directed against the Jews was noted. Reports appeared both in the Polish Underground press and in communiques to the West.

Some Zegota members with code names


Good News 2013-2014

That help to Jews had to be coordinated, organized and supported on a larger scale occurred seemingly at once and spontaneously to a number of Polish resisters. They realized that the support of personal friends, or unplanned and unsupported help of strangers, was far from enough. But more help would not be easy. By this time, the Polish population had been pauperized. Working for ridiculously low wages, limited to very small rations, and living in a police state, their ability to help was severely restricted. Relentless terror and anti-Semitic propaganda were also taking their toll. With an ideology that turned every civilized concept of morality upside down, the Germans not only threatened with death all those who defied them but also rewarded those who cooperated with them. The Gestapo had paid informers from all ethnic groups, including Volksdeutsche, Poles, Ukrainians, Lithuanians and Jews, on its payroll. Some were motivated by racist ideology, some by greed and still others by threats to themselves or their families.

community. This already existed at a party level and contacts had already been made with the AK by the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB), a resistance group formed by the younger members of the Jewish Underground. Some of the Jewish leaders were already living on the Aryan side and the two most prominent, Dr. Adolf Berman and Dr. Leon Feiner, were invited to join in the first discussions of the Konrad Zegota Committee in Warsaw.

The idea of unifying the diverse efforts to help Jews was primarily the result of the efforts of two women, Zofia Kossak and Wanda Krahelska-Filipowicz. Kossak was a well-known, conservative Catholic writer, a member of a Catholic lay organization and intensely involved on a personal level in assisting Jews. Krahelska-Filipowicz, who also personally sheltered Jews, was a Catholic Socialist activist of long standing and well connected to important members of the AK.

Who was Konrad Zegota? There was no such person. In the conspiratorial life of the Polish Underground, virtually everything had a code name – a cryptonym – and the Council for Aid to Jews was no exception. Clearly, no conversations about anything to do with Jews could be risked, and “Zegota” was used not only in discussions, but on all documents, receipts, and memos. In time, Zegota came to signify all activities involving help to Jews.

While Kossak and Krahelska are generally credited with galvanizing a united front in the struggle to help Jews, they and the people they drew together were already deeply involved in this work, either at party levels, in community associations, or as individuals. The aim now was to unite all these forces and link them with the considerable Underground resources of the AK, and, just as important, to get funds from the Government-in-Exile in London and other sources.

The main links with the Polish Underground were through Aleksander Kaminski and Henryk Wolinski, both of the AK. Kaminski was editor of the Biuletyn Informacyjny (BI), the most widely read Underground newspaper. The BI had correspondents in practically every part of Poland, some “foreign correspondents” in other occupied countries including Germany and, most important, a permanent correspondent in the Warsaw Ghetto. Wolinski was head of the Jewish Section of the Underground Bureau of Information and Propaganda. He was the principal AK contact for Arie Wilner, the Jewish liaison of ZOB, and later for the Jewish leaders in Zegota as well.

The Konrad Zegota Committee Of vital importance was to coordinate efforts with the Jewish Underground and thus establish a liaison with the Jewish

...Zegota not only helped materially, but also gave people hope. For the first time in years... they were not alone.

The Network In October 1942 the Delegatura’s official newspaper, Rzeczpospolita Polska, published the following announcement: We have been asked to make it publicly known that the initiatives of a number of social organizations from Catholic and Democratic quarters have led to the organization of

Miriam Peleg, Pole living in Israel Good News 2013-2014


the Civic Assistance Committee, which will provide relief to Jewish people suffering from the results of bestial German persecution. As far as means and opportunities allow, and taking into account the living conditions in an occupied country, the Committee will try to bring relief to the victims of Nazi outrages.1

of people from the AK, the Jewish Fighting Organization, and Zegota knew about Zurawia Street. Miraculously it was never raided, but there were some close calls. A Zegota officer, Tadeusz Rek, once approached the house when he realized that he was being followed. Without missing a beat, he walked past number 24 and knocked on another door pretending that he was looking for a room to rent. When he emerged, the shadow was still with him. He turned down another street and met fellow officer Leon Feiner on his way to the same meeting. Rek greeted him loudly and effusively, like a friend he hadn’t seen for several years. Then, arm on his friend’s shoulder, he guided him to a nearby cafe for a stiff drink.

This was the only public notice of the birth of Zegota. This announcement, revealing nothing except the existence of such a committee, was published at considerable risk. Had this information fallen into German hands, the Gestapo would have arrested and tortured as many people as required to uncover and break the organization. The idea of Zegota came into being because of individual humanitarian impulses, but its realization would not have been possible without an extensive network. Personalities, and they were without exception very strong personalities, were surrendered to principles. Individuals submitted to the collective, reaching out to expand the network horizontally. What little hierarchy there was, existed only to demand obedience to the discipline of the conspiracy. Most of all, the people in Zegota were not just idealists but activists, and activists are, by nature, people who know people.

Since 24 Zurawia was on occasion under surveillance, other premises were available, including the homes of two seamstresses, an electrician, and various other members. Perhaps the most unusual branch office was a fruit and vegetable kiosk operated by Ewa Brzuska, an old woman known to everybody as “Babcia” (Granny). Babcia hid Leon Feiner’s papers and money under the sauerkraut and pickle barrels, and secreted underground books and pamphlets in various nooks and crannies. She always had sacks of potatoes or something ready to cover Jewish children who found themselves running from the police. Two of those little smugglers now live in Canada.

Zegota could not stop the murder campaign of the Nazi government. They could not intercept and help every Jew who escaped from the ghetto. They could not even guarantee the security of those Jews who did come under their wing. Nevertheless, they were able to rescue thousands of people otherwise destined for death.

Julian Grobelny, Zegota’s first chairman, was actively helping Jews before he joined Zegota. He headed an Underground cell and his wife, Halina, worked with him accepting all the risks and responsibilities of their dangerous work. The Grobelny cell eventually had some 40 members, including Wlodzimierz Garlinski, director of a quarantine department on the Public Health Board. Nothing could be safer for Jews than to be under quarantine, and although this could only serve as a temporary respite, it gave Grobelny time to look for other quarters. When the Socialist Party entered the discussions for the formation of Zegota, Grobelny was an invaluable asset, not only for his great organizational skills, but for his ability to enlist help. One of his recruits described him as a great humanist, but he was not a person who asked for help; rather, he delegated assignments. To help a Jew could cost you your life, he used to say, so for the same life, you might as well help several Jews.

Zegota’s headquarters at 24 Zurawia Street was the home of a Polish Socialist, Eugenia Wasowska, and it also doubled as a temporary shelter. There were “office hours” twice a week

when couriers could drop in to pick up or ask for documents or money, arrange for housing or medical help, get clothing, or arrange for food deliveries to Jews in hiding. They would also find out the date and time of meetings and transmit this information to the members. The office was administered by Janina Raabe who had studied book binding in Paris and was co-founder of the Democratic Party’s underground press, and by Zofia Rudnicka, a lawyer.

As chairman of Zegota, Grobelny brought the same qualities to the organization that he had used in his own cell. He expanded the network, organized the operations, and also played a personal role in many activities, especially those involving children. Excerpts reprinted with permission from authors’ book, Code Name: Zegota. Rescuing Jews in Occupied Poland, 1942-1945: The Most Dangerous Conspiracy in Wartime Europe (Praeger, May 2010).

Raabe and Rudnicka looked after funds, meetings, and contacts for Jews with Poles. There were frequent personnel changes as people were arrested, killed, or, warned of danger, forced to lie low for a while. An incredibly large number 33

Good News 2013-2014

Thank you, Woz By Lew Randall


first met Steve Wozniak (or, as we all called him, Woz) in January 1979 when I went to work for Apple Computer. Apple had only one product then — the Apple II, which at the time was sold mainly to hobbyists and laboratory tinkerers.

Steve Wozniak, late 1970’s

Apple was to become a public company on December 12, 1980, with an Initial Public Offering (“IPO”) of 4,600,000 shares at $22 each, the biggest IPO since Ford Motor Company had gone public in 1956. A week or two before Apple’s Wall Street debut, Woz worried that many of his colleagues weren’t going to benefit as much as they should. In his opinion they had been shortchanged, for whatever reasons, in the distribution of Apple’s employee stock options. So he made up a list of persons who deserved a bigger share of good fortune, and offered to sell them his own personal Apple stock at $7 a share in private transactions, just days before the IPO. One night after work we all met to write Woz our checks and sign purchase agreements for the shares he was selling us. The next day there was a terrible flap; the investment bankers were furious and there was talk of postponing the IPO. But Woz had done his legal homework. Those private transactions couldn’t be undone, even if they violated the terms of Apple’s contract with its investment bankers. The IPO went forward. Each share Woz sold us for $7 became worth $22 when they went public a few days later.*

Our project was a small one, staffed by just seven employees - the project manager, Woz, me, and four other engineers. We were housed in an office on Bandley Drive across the street from Apple’s main building in Cupertino, California. Although Woz’s desk was officially in our office, we saw him irregularly, perhaps a few times a week. His days were mostly spent at his lab bench in the main building. When he did show up, we were always glad to see him. He was warm and friendly, and, for techies anyway, a source of good conversation. Although he was officially supposed to be working on our project, he was surreptitiously (as we later learned) spending time on something that turned out to be much more important - a controller for an external floppy disk drive that would turn the Apple II into a real computer. In those days a computer’s disk controller might consist of one or more circuit boards, with dozens of integrated circuits (“ICs”) on them. Controllers were special-purpose computers in themselves, and expensive. But Woz built one entirely on a single tiny board which fit a slot in the back of the Apple II. As I recall, he had invented an especially efficient encoding technique that required only seven ICs to implement. No one would have guessed that the cost of a disk controller could be reduced by 90% at one stroke. But Woz did it.

The following summer my wife and I were charmed to be invited to Woz’s wedding, which was held in a park under a sunny California sky. For live entertainment, Emmylou Harris and her band played for us as we sat on the grass. On our way down the receiving line, Woz welcomed us warmly.

Wherever smart people work, doors are unlocked.

I haven’t seen Woz for a couple of decades now, but I will always be grateful to have known and worked with a technical genius who was such a natural gentleman. Thank you, Woz.

Steve Wozniak

In my opinion, Woz’s disk controller turned the tide for personal computing. Now that a securities analyst, a scientist or an accountant could save a spreadsheet or a text file to a floppy disk, and reliably recover their work a week later, the personal computer became commercially useful. Without Woz’s controller, the Apple II might have remained a toy for most of us, and a useful tool only for geeks and techies.

*Since then, Apple stock has been split four times, and each of those old shares has turned into 56 shares. Today those $7 shares would be worth more than $5,000 each!

Lew Randall worked in Silicon Valley for 29 years as a software engineer, engineering manager and investor, before moving to the Puget Sound region in 1996. He was a member of the Board of Directors of E*Trade Financial Corporation from its inception in 1982 until 2012, and he has served on the Board of the Cato Institute since 2002.

Although he had every reason to be, Woz wasn’t overly impressed with himself. His natural modesty was engaging, as was his enthusiasm for work, which for him was more like play. He was unselfconscious, like a kid in a sandbox. He was also a lot more generous than most Silicon Valley entrepreneurs. Good News 2013-2014


An Educational Marvel By Beata Paszyc


ducation has always been of great significance to the Polish people. It was a prime concern of the Kings and Queens of Poland as early as the 12th century. The catalogue of the library of the Cathedral Chapter in Kraków shows that Polish scholars already had access to Western European literature starting in the year 1110. Yearning for education, even during the dramatic times of historical turbulence, kept Polish people unified and focused on the future. One esteemed school of higher education in Kraków is celebrating 650 years in existence this year.

Let it be a pearl of the inestimable

sciences so that it may bring forth men outstanding for the maturity of their counsel, pre-eminent for their

virtue, and well qualified in all the branches of knowledge. King Casimir the Great, May 12, 1364 Long, long ago… a far away land, the Kraków University, the oldest university in Poland and one of the oldest in Europe, was established. It was founded on May 12, 1364 by the Polish King Casimir the Great. The Studium Generale, as the University was then called, had just three faculties liberal arts, medicine and law. During the rule of King Casimir the studies of medicine and law were very active, but after the King’s demise in 1370, the University ceased to exist. Following the failed attempts to restore it in the 1390’s, the University was brought back to life by King Vladislaus Jagiełło on July 26, 1400. Queen Jadwiga, who died in 1399 just before the doors officially opened, contributed much to the restoration by leaving a considerable

The Founding of the University by Jan Matejko (1838–1893)

portion of her private estate to the University in her last will. The University’s internal structure was completed in 1397 with the formal establishment of the faculty of Theology, which was the most important one founded since the Middle Ages. During the 15th century the University flourished, attracting students eager to learn from all over Europe. Apart from the Poles, there were Ruthenians1 , Lithuanians, Hungarians, Germans, Czechs, Swiss, English, Dutch, French, Spanish, Italians, and even Tartars who were educated at the University. One of the most famous students, Nicolaus Copernicus, who publicly declared in the 1540’s that the Sun was at the center of the solar system instead of the earth, enrolled there in 1491. Over the next several decades, the University remained hugely successful. By the second half of the 16th century, however, the Reformation and religious division of Europe, combined with the creation of many new universities throughout the continent, led to a decrease in the influx of foreign students. At this point the University, became known as Kraków Academy. The 17th century was dominated by the struggle between the Academy and the Jesuits, who tried to dominate education in Kraków. This did not deter students, who continued to attend and to

King Casimir the Great and the University


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graduate from the Academy in that period, among them were Jan Sobieski, a future King of Poland and conqueror of the 1683 Relief of Vienna. The establishment of the Commission for National Education in 1773 (the world’s first Ministry of Education) introduced a new era in the history of the Kraków University. The Commission‘s main goal was to reorganize the educational system in Poland. Hugo Kołłątaj was in charge of the reforms and he reinvented the University during the years 1777–1786. He replaced the four original faculties with two colleges - the Collegium Morale (theology, law and literature) and the Collegium Physicum (mathematics, physics and medicine). He also introduced lectures in Polish (with the exception of theology), brought in distinguished scholars (including mathematician and astronomer, Jan Śniadecki), furthered the development of natural sciences, and initiated the construction of the astronomical observatory, the botanical garden and the university clinic. During that time the University changed its name again and was called the Principal School of the Realm.

future poet and Nobel Laureate of Literature (1996). The University became a safe haven for scholars who had been forced to leave universities in the cities of Lviv and Vilnius due to the change of Eastern Polish borders during WWII, as well as those who could not return to Warsaw because of its destruction by Nazi Germans. Under the communist regime, the University’s structure was completely changed; the communists eliminated the theological, agricultural and medical faculties.

Because of historical circumstances influencing the history of the University, it was renamed many times. During the partitions of Poland it found itself under Austrian domain, with German as the official language. It was not until 1817 that the University acquired its current name - Jagiellonian University.

The year 1948 marks the worst period in the post-war history of Jagiellonian University - the era of Stalinism. Communist officials prevented some of the well-known scholars from conducting their research, and in the following decades political turbulence impacted the history of the University. The years 1968 and 1981 witnessed waves of student demonstrations against the regime. But despite tumultuous times the Jagiellonian University remained an institution where many distinguished scholars continued their outstanding work in their respective academic fields and educated hundreds of thousands of students.

After Poland regained its independence in 1918, Jagiellonian University continued to develop and grow until the dark clouds of horrible strife came with the outbreak of World War II and the attack of Germany on the Polish soil on September 1, 1939.

On November 6, 1939, German authorities invited, under the pretense of a lecture, nearly 180 eminent scholars and academic staff of the Jagiellonian University to gather Today in Collegium Novum. But the invitation was The 21st century Jagiellonian University ema trap, and the German officers brutally Jagiellonian University Emblem ploys more than 540 professors, 730 assoarrested and deported the professors to ciate professors, 2,600 support academic concentration camps where many of them staff, and over 3,500 administrative staff, and provides eduwere killed. Another group of scholars met their demise afcation to about 50,000 students - 65% of whom are women. ter being captured by the Soviets (who invaded Poland on As expected, many of the students are European, but the UniSeptember 17, 1939), and were executed by the order of versity is also attended by students from all over the world Joseph Stalin in Katyn Forest (1940). Poland was occupied including the Americas, Africa and Asia. Many lectures are by Germans who demolished and then closed the Unioffered in foreign languages, such as German, French and versity, and yet the Polish people did not give up on eduEnglish, and there is a very successful School of Medicine cation. The student community of 800 strong, including a and several other majors where students from all over the young Karol Wojtyła who later became Pope John Paul II, globe can study in English. The new research facilities and soon started meeting in secret and continuing to learn until the end of the war. The University culture stayed focused labs are very modern with cutting-edge innovations. The reand indestructible. search conducted by knowledgeable professionals working there attracts the attention and interest of many internationSoon after the liberation in 1945, over 5,000 students enrolled ally acclaimed businesses. The Cracow Technology Park, has in Jagiellonian University, among them Wisława Szymborska, already been working with leading firms such as Motorola. Good News 2013-2014


Some present day highlights of the university are: •

A special study program to teach English for the blind and partially-sighted students has been created. These lectures, led by a professor trained in the UK, respond to the specific needs that people with disabilities have in the workplace.

Students of the university win many government grants, prestigious scholarships and are champions at many competitions in the areas of physics, mathematics, medicine (especially in cardiology), organ and skin transplants. Biotechnology, Biophysics and Biochemistry are also very strong and internationally recognized faculties. For example, the Medical Biotechnology Research Group discovered new mechanisms responsible for the formation of blood vessels and cell resistance to stress. This enables researchers to find new ways of treating tumors.

An archeological research group from the University who went to Guatemala in 2006 ended their dig with resounding success. They discovered a Mayan cultural center in the territory of Nakum, including a chief’s grave, containing many treasures such as a jade breastplate. The success is even sweeter since this was the first fully independent Polish archaeological project carried out in the land of the Mayans.

There is also the University Museum with an exceptional collection of old scientific instruments, university memorabilia, professors’ portrait gallery, and an interactive mathematics exhibition - the only permanent one in Poland. It is a visual testament to the exquisite work Jagiellonian University has continued to accomplish despite all of Poland’s political turmoil.

There are many large-scale developments taking place on the university campus, especially with new buildings being erected. This modern university hosts prestigious conferences, seminars, and flourishes as it is recognized as one of the best Universities in Poland and Europe.


Collegium Novum

The 650 year anniversary was celebrated in grand style. The centuries of unwavering vision of its leaders and faculty has made Jagiellonian University one of the finest bastions of knowledge in the world and in the magical and picturesque city of Krakow. 1 Ruthenian is an historical term for ethnic minority in the lands of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, which today are in Ukraine, Poland, Slovakia, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, Hungary and the Czech lands. (Wikipedia) Maximus Auditorium


Good News 2013-2014

Hollywood.PL: Beyond the Dream: Personal Roads to the Silver Screen By Irene Tomaszewski


hen Hollywood.PL was brought to my attention, I was not much attracted. Described as a “coffee table book” with all that implies – an overweight picture book with bits of bland text – it took a bit of nudging to give it a look. I will be forever grateful to the nudger. The idea for the book was casually mentioned at a boozy dinner in a Warsaw flat when the conversation turned to successful Poles in Hollywood. Photographer Jacek Laskus mused that he’d like to photograph them; journalist Agnieszka Niezgoda threw in a casual offer to interview them. This unpromising start turned out to be the miraculous conception of Hollywood.PL: Beyond the Dream: Personal Roads to the Silver Screen, a series of portraits and interviews with successful and engaging Polish artists working in film in America. Sure enough, the book is heavy with lots of photographs. But these are not just pictures; they are studies of artists, reflecting character, intelligence, mood, and spirit. Laskus is a gifted artist himself. And then there’s the text, every interview on par with the fabulous photographs. There’s one photograph taken not by Laskus but by Niezgoda with her cell phone; this plain black-and-white picture says so much about the man Good News 2013-2014

who, when asked about success, simply tiny minority and foreigners are almost says, “Maybe it’s a matter of talent, is non-existent. She writes “without an accent” so producers don’t realize she’s not it not?” American. Or that she’s a woman…until You won’t find any manufactured celeb- after they’ve read and liked her work. rities here. Hollywood.PL is about talent and complex lives; it is about emigra- Oscar-winning composer Jan A. P. Kacztion, about life in America and Poland, marek’s arrival in America is crazier and France and England, about culture shock more exciting than anything a Hollywood and adaptation, and about multiple script could dream up. And where do identities. It is also very much about you find a character like him? A youthful the artists’ skill and their passion for “anarchist” who hated the constraints of communist Poland, played with a their work. rock band, studied with Grotowski, and Niezgoda and Laskus were not interest- did anything to go beyond the “barren ed in name-dropping or scandals. They utilitarian horizon of socialism.” Asked sought out 23 artists - directors, screen- how to compare gloomy Eastern Europe writers, composers, actors, cinematog- to sunny California? In Poland, “the alraphers, production designers and ward- lusiveness of expression was alluring to robe designers - creative people who me. Americans are blunt, but effective.” realized their own dreams of success in He said much more. Read the rest. the dream capital of the world. Although they are not mere dreamers as quickly becomes evident. And if among this stellar cast there is a supporting player worthy of an award, it is the National Film School in Łódź - an oasis of freedom in communist Poland where all of these artists could watch film masterpieces denied to the public at large, where they could have free discussion, friendships untouched by the regime, and where they acquired the skills that placed them among the world’s best. It’s not easy to select a few for mention but here goes: A successful screenwriter, Agatha Dominik, made it in a field where women are a 38

Agatha Dominik

Zbigniew Rybczynski is an artist, a painter who applied to the film school in Łódź with no portfolio, only hundreds of rolls of his canvasses. He was accepted because “they never saw such a madman before.” He recalls pre-1989 Warsaw (“Buñuel’s surrealism”) and the great excitement of Solidarity. Now, he considers New York and the Mediterranean coast as the “heart of the world.” He loves living in Wrocław too, but then, he could live anywhere. Anna Biedrzycka-Sheppard, a costume designer who designed for Zanussi recalls a three-week hunt for materials for one costume in Warsaw. In a flash she was able to understand “a summer mink coat.” She relocated to London, a discouraging time working “a day job” in a clothing boutique. Then suddenly she was asked to design for Spielberg, for Polanski, Captain America and Quentin Tarantino, and now commands a design team of 80 people. All that balanced with love and devotion for her daughter. And on it goes. Oscar-winning production designer Allan Starski can work anywhere - New York London, Hamburg, Paris - he feels well wherever he goes. But he can only live in Poland. Cinematographer Adam Holender’s life would not be believed if filmed. He saw his first movie in a Gulag camp, starving prisoners shown decadent America. He arrived in this America, in 1966 New York, with a few hundred dollars and was struck by “a hypnotic impression of urban energy. Of severe poverty juxtaposed with opulent wealth, people of all races, mingling, bumping into each other, some of them nice, some rude. The heart of humankind!” He drove a truck until life imitated a Hollywood movie and, like an understudy, he stepped in for another cinematographer. From there he worked with the greats - Dustin Hoffman, Faye Dunaway, Al Pacino, Paul Newman. Unwilling to compromise his artistic integrity for money, any more than he formerly compromised with communism, he partnered in a profitable company producing commercials, leaving him free to choose only the scripts that interested him.

Jan A.P. Kaczmarek

There’s no Polish Hollywood without Roman Polanski, whose first impressions of America were that the people were genuine, friendly, and open to new talent. He noted the welcoming charm of Hollywood, especially by people who were already established. (Quite a contrast to his introduction to France.) An early memory - the Farmer’s Market in LA dazzling him with the incredible perfection of the fruit on display…which were totally tasteless! Just the opposite of Poland, where it was ugly but delicious. His “sentimental feelings for Poland grow” as time passes; he recalls friends, parties, vodka, food. But he left

without hesitation; he was “an optimist and arrogant,” as to be expected from the young. Great conversation. Agnieszka Holland did not come across as sympathique. However, reading on, I noticed that so many of the others talk about her with great affection, noting especially her generosity. Just as some people are photogenic while others are not, I came to the conclusion that she just doesn’t interview well. But her admirers more than made up for it. Buy this book for yourself and for everyone on your gift list. It is much more



Good News 2013-2014

interesting and long-lasting than flowers. If you teach, there is no better text for social history or studies of identity and memory. Niezgoda brings together people whose lives and views on life are as exhilarating to read as they must have been to live, people who have not been restricted by any borders while at the same time remaining comfortable in their affectionsfor their own, for the familiar.

And by no means is this for a Polish niche audience. Here you will find not only how people look at others, but also how others see them. Not a bad thing for anyone, and rare to find, perhaps only possible in a book about people who have successfully crossed cultural divides. Niezgoda and Laskus are to be congratulated, and thanked.

Adam Holender

Historical, political and so very inspirational. A journey of Polish film artists from their native country to Hollywood, whose struggles, sacrifices and successes are told in their own words. Beautiful photographs and moving conversations combine to capture the oftentimes eccentric and always poetic lives of some of cinema’s most accomplished artists. An exciting ride that’s left me a little more than what I was before taking it.

Roman Polanski

Carl Franklin, Director of Devil in the Blue Dress, Out of Time, One False Move, House of Cards Hollywood PL: Beyond The Dream: Personal Roads to the Silver Screen Conversations: Agnieszka Niezgoda, Photographs: Jacek Laskus Coffee table book / Hardcover / First Edition / 224 pages. ISBN: 9788393219216 $ 55.00

Reprinted with permission from Cosmopolitan Review, 6/16/14 Irene Tomaszewski is a writer and founding president of the Montreal-based Canadian Foundation for Polish Studies and program director of “Poland in the Rockies”. She is the author of Inside a Gestapo Prison 1942-44: The Letters of Krystyna Wituska. She co-authored Żegota: The Council for Aid to Jews in Occupied Poland 1942-45 and wrote the screenplay for a documentary by the same title produced by Sy Rotter for Documentaries International (Washington DC). Ms. Tomaszeweski was awarded the Lech Walesa Media Award in 2011 by President Walesa at AIPC’s International Polonaise Ball for her lifelong contributions in promoting Polish history and culture.

Good News 2013-2014


On the Canonization of Pope By Piotr H. Kosicki


n the fall of 1946, a novice priest from the small Polish town of Wadowice moved to Rome. None of his classmates or professors at the Collegium Angelicum could know that Karol Wojtyła, long known to friends for his love of theater and of poetry, would just three decades later become Supreme Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church. This was the beginning of the long and storied career of Pope John Paul II, who this past April became a saint. In his youth, Karol Wojtyła combined a finely honed sense of social justice with a deep passion for his faith and his country, as well as old-fashioned youthful fun. He loved soccer and skiing. Soccer helped to launch his life-long friendship with Jerzy Kluger that became emblematic of the dialogue that Wojtyła later as Pope promoted between Catholicism and Judaism. At age 9 he lost his mother, at 21 his father. By the time that he became a manual laborer in German-occupied Poland one year into the Second World War (1940) – working first at a chemical plant, then at a quarry, finally at a water-treatment plant – he had found other guiding voices in his life. These were the tailor and mystic Jan Tyranowski, in whose study circles Wojtyła developed a passion for the sixteenth-century poetry of Spanish mystic Saint John of the Cross; and the he was not just one of the rising stars of venerable, long-time archbishop of Kraków, Prince Adam Stefan Sapieha, who modern Polish Catholicism, but a leading had confirmed Wojtyła in 1938 and who, beginning in 1942, mentored him for light of a new generation of Catholic thinkthe priesthood in secret seminary courses in Kraków. ers of European and global stature.

By the end of the war, Wojtyła was a seminarian, an actor, a poet, and a phiKarol Wojtyła became a bishop at the exlosopher. Although he abandoned his clandestine acting in the underground traordinarily young age of 38. More than an Unia (Union) movement midway through the war to devote himself to spiritual intellectual, however, he was also a pastoral pursuits, this devotion also incorporated a deep appreciation of Polish culture and a personal dedication to intellectual and artistic creativity. Ordained a priest by Sapieha in November 1946 and at his archbishop's behest, Wojtyla immediately left Poland for graduate studies in Rome at the prestigious Collegium Angelicum. There, he studied under the Dominican father Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, one of the great minds of modern Catholic thought. Garrigou-Lagrange exposed Wojtyła to the writings of the “Angelic Doctor” of the Catholic Church, the medieval Dominican theologian St. Thomas Aquinas, whose Summa Theologica has become one of the cornerstones of Catholic belief and practice. To demonstrate his respect and piety, Wojtyła remained on his knees while studying Aquinas’s writings. It was a combination of this Thomist thought with the mysticism of Saint John of the Cross that gave rise to Wojtyła’s Ph.D. dissertation in 1948. For technical reasons, Wojtyła was granted his doctoral degree not in Rome, but in Kraków. In rapid succession, he began writing for the Catholic newspaper Tygodnik Powszechny (Universal Weekly) and teaching in the Kraków-based Jagiellonian University’s Theology Department (until its liquidation in 1954 by Communist authorities) and at Poland’s Catholic University of Lublin. In 1953, he published his “habilitation” thesis on the philosophy of German Catholic Max Scheler. By the time that he was appointed auxiliary bishop of Kraków in 1958, 41

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virtuoso, known to his students and many Catholic faithful as “Wujek” (“Uncle”). And so he was remembered by the scores of youth who accompanied him on organized hiking, skiing, and kayaking trips. (At the time, it was illegal for priests to lead such trips; hence, Wojtyła wore civilian clothes and asked not to be called “Father.”)

the Church. The first Polish Pope in history was also the first non-Italian Pope since 1523, and he quickly demonstrated a unique combination of intellectual, pastoral, and geopolitical acumen. He placed Communist Poland front and center in his international agenda, making the first papal pilgrimage in history there in June 1979, during which he spoke to a crowd of millions gathered in Warsaw’s Victory Square; he also visited key sites of symbolic significance, like Auschwitz and Częstochowa. This pilgrimage helped to galvanize a sense of national belonging and generate political ferment across Polish society, laying the groundwork for the emergence of the nationwide Solidarity trade union network one year later, in August 1980, which mobilized upwards of 10 million Poles.

The future Pope and saint’s hallmark was a delicate balancing of pastoral and intellectual life. He continued to teach at the Catholic University of Lublin (which now carries his name) until elevated to the rank of cardinal in 1967, and he made a point of directly advising and serving as a spiritual patron to a range of groups in Communist Poland, including the Catholic Intelligentsia Clubs that emerged in 1956 after the end of Stalinism.

It is important to understand that Poland, while central to By the time that Wojtyła became a bishop, the Roman the future saint’s program as Pope, served him in at least Catholic Church as a whole was undergoing a revolution, two ways. It mattered on its own terms as the Pope’s homewhich its new Pope John XXIII announced as an “updating” land, for which he invested a deep faith in the meaning of its (aggiornamento) for the Church in historical suffering. (From his June 2, 1979 its dealings with the modern world. Warsaw sermon – “It is impossible without John Paul II made No one behind the Iron Curtain was Christ to understand this nation with its past better qualified than the young Polso full of splendor and also of terrible difish bishop to rise to this challenge. It ficulties. It is impossible to understand this of a worldview... thus makes perfect sense that Pope city, Warsaw, the capital of Poland, that unFrancis would schedule John Paul II’s dertook in 1944 an unequal battle against promoting certain canonization this past April to cointhe aggressor, a battle in which it was abancide with that of John XXIII. Wojtyła’s doned by the allied powers, a battle in which be close readings of Thomas Aquinas it was buried under its own ruins.”) universal truths: that had made him one of the world experts on the Angelic Doctor’s idea But Poland also mattered as the capstone of the “human person,” which after of Saint John Paul II’s vision for the rest of and the the Second World War helped to give the world. He expressed this clearly in his rise to the international law doctrine encyclical from September 1981, Laborem . of human rights. Moreover, his work Exercens, in which the Pope made clear his on Scheler and other contemporary belief that human work, human dignity, and philosophers gave Wojtyła the necessary tools to illuminate human solidarity were all connected. It was Poland’s Solidarthe problems of the modern world in light of the intellectual ity movement that he understood to be the embodiment of foundations of the Church. As one of the nine Polish bishops universal values to be promoted worldwide. John Paul II thus to participate in the entire Second Vatican Council of 1962managed to preserve his predecessor’s emphasis on the 1965 – which he attended for the first time as an archbishop Global South while drawing inspiration from his homeland in 1964 – Wojtyła sat on the committee that prepared the behind the Iron Curtain. draft for the Church’s “pastoral constitution on the Church in the modern world.”

Poland the center

faith, solidarity, human person

It is thus important to understand that, when Wojtyła was elected Pope in October 1978, he was no unknown; quite the opposite. In the wake of his extensive work with bishops and theologians from around the world at Vatican II, Wojtyła emerged in the Council’s aftermath as one of the most trusted advisors to Pope Paul VI, with whom he proceeded in lockstep in that pontiff’s encouragement of a diplomatic opening to the Soviet Bloc, of international development in the Global South, and of a renewed emphasis on human life. Nonetheless, when a Polish cardinal was elected Pope on October 16, 1978, this marked a revolution in the history of Good News 2013-2014


His solution to the challenges facing the modern Catholic Church, and to those threatening social justice and human rights, was one and the same: firm support for the Solidarity trade network, uncompromising condemnation of the Communist regime that crushed it in December 1981, and a sense of mission in promoting the example of Solidarity elsewhere throughout the world. This coherent worldview inspired a wide range of advocacies, from ground-breaking Catholic-Jewish and Catholic-Muslim dialogues to – late in the Pope’s life – deep concern for the materialism and socalled “culture of death” that he perceived in the liberalism and capitalism that had triumphed over Communism. At the very end of his life, he bore witness in yet another way through his very public suffering of Parkinson’s disease.

Dr. Piotr H. Kosicki specializes in the transnational history of 20th-century Europe, focusing primarily on Poland and religion, politics and the history of ideas. The recipient of a Ph.D. in History from Princeton University, Dr. Kosicki is currently preparing a book entitled, Europe Between Catechism and RevoluDr. Piotr Kosicki tion: Catholicism, Poland and the Social Question, 1891-1991. His research includes the thought and politics of Pope John Paul II and the European Christian Democracy. Of particular interest is the historical memory of mass violence, especially as it pertains to Polish-German and PolishRussian relations, and the revolutions of 1989 in the global perspective. Dr. Kosicki has held a Fulbright Fellowship and a Chateaubriand Fellowship, and has published an edited volume and dozens of articles in five languages.

These are the lessons of the life of Saint John Paul II. From the moment of his death in April 2005, cries were heard of Santo subito! from Catholics around the world. This past April, Pope Francis made a lasting testament of the pastoral commitments of John XXIII and John Paul II by canonizing them together. An intellectual, an artist, and a pastor as well as a Pope and a saint, John Paul II made Poland the center of a worldview that was nonetheless fundamentally geared toward promoting certain values that he understood to be universal truths: faith, solidarity, and the human person.

John Paul II was famous for his jokes. His personal doctor told a story that while traveling one time, the Holy Father did not feel well after eating potato pancakes. As a remedy the doctor suggested a little bit of cognac. The Pope asked the doctor at what altitude they were currently flying. When the doctor responded with the answer the Holy Father raised his hand and said, “Sorry, I can’t. My boss is too close.”

Love is All You Need... Groom at 102! On Valentine’s weekend 2014, Wladyslaw (Walter) Zachariasiewicz and Sandra Rovsek-Crabb wed at the Polish church in Silver Spring, MD outside of Washington DC. There is nothing extraordinary about two people in love getting married, nothing except the fact that Walter just turned 102 years old!

in the making of a documentary about the Pope. The bride and groom are both extremely proud of promoting the legacy of Saint John Paul II and their philanthropy centers on helping the less privileged.

He is a long time friend of Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and an active member of AIPC. A great patriot and compassionate man of faith, Walter is a legendary Polish–American activist who received the Gold Medal award from AIPC in 2006 for his many achievements. He is a survivor of a Siberian gulag, spent years in Kazakhstan and Europe, then landed in NY where he worked for the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. He met his bride years ago at John Paul II Foundation meetings where they are both active members. His wife Sandra, a youthful 71 years old, worked in the fine art export field in Hollywood, CA and assisted

Our heartfelt congratulations and wishes for much health and happiness!


The beaming couple on their wedding day!

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Congratulations to the American Institute of Polish Culture in Miami, FL From the Koproski Family Foundation Stamford, Connecticut Alexander & Patricia Koproski Lisa & William Irwin Susan Koproski, Nikki & Allie Cavaliere Gregory, Michele, Gregory Jr., Samantha & Jessica Koproski Beth, Brian, Ronan & Juliet O’Rourke

POLISH ASSISTANCE, INC. - POLSKA BRATNIA POMOC Providing assistance since 1956 to needy persons of Polish origin 15 East 65th Street, New York, New York 10065 Tel. 212-570-5560 Fax 212-570-5561 e-mail:  You are cordially invited to attend our 56th Bal Polonaise to benefit Polish Assistance on Friday, January 30th, 2015, Grand Ballroom of The Plaza Hotel, New York City See details on

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Lady Blanka - “Woman of Influence”


ill Cunningham, in his New York Times Evening Hours column, highlighted Polish Assistance’s 55th Bal Polonaise as one of the “February Revelry” celebrations in New York. The annual fundraiser was held on February 8, 2014 in the Grand Ballroom of the magnificent Plaza Hotel in New York City. The gala benefited Polish Assistance, Inc. a nonprofit organization that provides financial aid to needy people of Polish descent since 1956. Consistent with the ball’s theme of “Women of Influence,” Lady Blanka Rosenstiel was the Guest of Honor. Among many accolades, she was recognized as the Honorary Consul of The Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland, Founder and President of the American Institute of Polish Culture Inc. and the Chopin Foundation of the United States. “We wanted to recognize Lady Blanka and her dedication to the promotion of Polish history and culture in the US and around the world,” explained Mrs. Jadwiga Palade, President of Polish Assistance. “She has certainly had a great impact on us, as well as on Polish American youth. We are particularly honored that over the years she has been an unwavering supporter of Polish Assistance and is currently a member of our Board of Directors. She is especially committed to helping those who fall on hard times.”

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel escorted by U.S.M.M.A.Midshipman Nicolas Grippo

Our strength comes from those who influence us. These individuals lead and inspire us to do more.

penthouse. All were very strong women of influence whose dedication to helping those less fortunate was continued by Mrs. Teresa Sulimirski and is now carried on by Mrs. Palade.

Lady Blanka, in her acceptance speech, stressed the importance of continuing to promote the causes that she has spearheaded for so many years. She encouraged the next generation to get involved and become the new leaders, promoting who we were, who we are, and most of all, who we can and will become. She asked the guests to Jadwiga Palade help those who are less fortunate through The Master of Ceremonies, Chevalier Cesare causes such as Polish Assistance. For young L. Santeramo, K.C.S.J., saluted Lady Blanka. He acknowlPolish professionals, PANGEA Alliance is edged that he, Lady Blanka, Chevalier Robert J. Campbell, an organization that promotes entrepreneurship and innoM.D., K.C.S.J. and current Board members, Mrs. Nina Mlodzvation as well as connects young Polish professionals around inska de Rovira, Mrs. Nina Thiessen and Mrs. Wanda Wolinthe world. There are opportunities to be involved at many ski can be seen in the earliest copies of Bal Polonaise Souvelevels, and Lady Blanka is a well known woman of influence nir Journals which is a reminder of their enduring dedication among them. She was joined by two very special guests from to Polish Assistance. During the awards program, the White California - her brother’s daughter and son-in-law - Dr. and Eagle Award was presented to Mr. Witold Sulimirski and Mrs. Raphael Ornaf. the Amicus Poloniae Award was presented to Mr. William J. Nareski II. It was with great pleasure that both Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and Mrs. Jadwiga Palade recognized a number of guests While Polish Assistance paid tribute to its honorees and who attended both organization’s Balls in 2014. Among celebrated them, they also recognized those who over the them were Consul General Ewa Junczyk-Ziomecka, Mrs.Nina years were a driving force behind the mission of the organiMlodzinska de Rovira, Mr. Marcin Cejrowski, Mr. Grzegorz zation. Women of Influence from our past whose legacy conFryc, Dr. and Mrs. Krzysztof Kolasa, Mr. and Mrs. Christotinues to this day include the founders of Polish Assistance pher Kurczaba, Esq., Mrs. Irena McLain-Laks, Dr. and Mrs. - Countess Maria Dembinski, Mrs. Aniela(Nela) Robinstein, Piotr Mencel, Mrs. Jadwiga Palade, Mr. and Mrs. Krzysztof and Mrs. Helena Rubinstein, the cosmetic queen of AmerPlocienniczak, Drs. Tadeusz and Ann Pyz, and Mr. and Mrs. ica who hosted the first three balls in her New York triplex Christopher Skibicki. Mr. Darek Barcikowski of the Bialy Orzel 45

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Mrs. Irena McLean-Laks, Mrs. Danuta Plocienniczak, Mrs.Jadwiga Palade and Lady Blanka Rosenstiel

Countess Jadwiga Krasicka, Mrs. Nina Mlodzinska de Rovira, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mrs. Bianca Ornaf Standing: Guest, Mr. Grzegorz Fryc, Dr. Raphael Ornaf, Mr. Marcin Cejrowski

publication from Boston attended both events and was Lady Blanka’s partner in dancing the Polonaise which opens the Ball.

its 43rd International Polonaise Ball in the Grand Ballroom at the Eden Roc Hotel in Miami on Saturday, February 7, 2015.

Plans are already underway for next year’s gala events. Polish Assistance will hold its 56th Ball Polonaise on Friday, January 30, 2015 in the Grand Ballroom of The Plaza Hotel in New York City. The American Institute of Polish Culture will hold

On behalf of Polish Assistance and its beneficiaries, we salute and thank Lady Blanka for her many years of support. More information about Polish Assistance can be found on

“Rich in tradition, generous in compassion” Six words that have defined Polish Assistance for over half a century. Honoring a mission statement that fully commits to providing financial relief, help in daily living, and assisting the needy and, in many cases, the elderly and infirm, Polish Assistance continues to inspire with its generosity and devotion to people of Polish origin in the US.

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Save the Date The 43rd International Polonaise Ball

Poland Fascinated with Brazil Exploring the Americas

at the luxurious Eden Roc Hotel - a Miami treasure Saturday Ball, February 7th, 2015 at 7:00 pm Sunday Brunch, February 8th, 2015 at 10:30 am - 2:30 pm Reservations and more information available at 305-864-2349 or e-mail us at or Please also visit our website for tickets at 47

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The 42 nd International Polonaise Ball Argentina & Poland in Love with Tango Saturday, February 1, 2014

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, President Lech Walesa, Mrs. Dorota Schnepf, Ambassador Ryszard Schnepf

Pres. Lech Walesa, Mr. Andrew Nagorski, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mr. Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski, Mrs. Maria Teresa Carrizo Sliva

T he 42nd International Polonaise Ball

organized by The American Institute of Polish Culture and under the patronage of Ryszard Schnepf, the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland, was held in historic Eden Roc Hotel in Miami Beach on February 1, 2014. The Ball was a celebration of Argentina & Poland In Love with Tango and brought over 380 guests together from all over the world including Argentina, Canada, Germany, Poland, Scotland and the U.S. The Eden Roc’s Promenade Ballroom sparkled with hundreds of lights and yards of gauzy chiffon. A feathered Polish white eagle with white and red fabric swags

and a yellow Argentine sun with white and blue swags framed the stage, where the Frank Hubbell Orchestra played beloved dance tunes and smooth jazz melodies.

Amb. Ryszard Schnepf, Dr. Mark Rosenberg, Pres. Lech Walesa, Mr. Nabil Achkar

It is a tradition that the Ball is opened by the stately Polonaise dance with Lady Blanka Rosenstiel and President Lech Walesa leading a procession of distinguished guests. At its conclusion, the official segment of the Ball began with a welcome speech by Lady Blanka in which she asked the guests to begin preparing for a special Ball celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Institute.

Mr. Gregory Fyrc, Mr. Leszek Ladowski, Countess Barbara Pagowska Cooper, Dr. Damian Valenzuela Mayer, Mrs. Agnieszka Gray, Mr. Keith Gray, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Marquisa Maria Alonso, Marquise Alexander Montague, Mrs. Teresa Lowenthal, Mr. Paul Lowenthal, Mrs. Emma Algarra, Count Rodney Hildebrant, Count Matthew Meehan

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Mr. Paul Landrum, Mrs. Karen Landrum, Mrs. Debby Furton, Provost Kenneth Furton

Mr. Soloman Yakoby, Mrs. Lana Yakoby, Mr. Zygmunt Staszewski

Mr. Kamil Blaszczak, Mrs. Cheryl Schindler, Mr. Jacek Schindler

Mr. Douglas Evans, Ms. Carol Jaeger, Mr. Mikolaj Bauer, Ms. Ewa Osiowy

Mr. Daniel Higueras, Ms. Eva Marina Ovejero, Dr. Damian Valenzuela Mayer

Dr. Witold Zajewski, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel

Next, the Ambassador of Poland awarded Amicus Polonaie for outstanding efforts to promote cooperation between Poland and the U.S. One was given to Mr. Nabil Achkar, Secretary of the Consular Corps in Miami and First Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Interaudi Bank, who said in Polish,

Mr. Piotr Gulczynski, Mrs. Katarzyna Gulczynski

“Long Live Poland” (“Niech zyje Polska”) and the other to Dr. Mark Rosenberg, the President of Florida International University. Both gentlemen share a passion for service to the community-at-large, and a desire to ensure that Florida continues to embrace many diverse cultures and people.

Mr. Jordi Verite, Mrs. Alex Verite

Mrs. Agnieszka Gray, Mr. Keith Gray, Mrs. Inga Luksza Senis, Honorary Consul John Petkus


Ms. Maria Cruz, Mr. Michael Antczak

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Mr. Henrique Vollmer, Mrs. Helene Vollmer, Mrs. Juan-Leigh Meyer Grocholski, Mr. Gabriel Grocholski

Hon. Consul Marek Pienkowski with a Polanie dancer

Seated: Ms. Victoria Golden, Mrs. Euphrosyne N. Parker Standing: Dr. Ashby Moncure, Mr. Ryszard Lewinski

Mrs. Maggie Villacampa, Mr. Jorge Villacampa

Mrs. Valeria Rosenbloom, Dr. Dipnarine Maharaj, Dr. Jacqueline Gouvea

Malambo perfomers with Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mrs. Beata Paszyc

Seated: Mr. Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski, Mrs. Magdalena Pogonowski Standing: Mr. Wojciech Putz, Mrs. Dorota Pogonwoski-Henne

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Marquisa Maria Alonso, Marquise Alexander Montague

Mr. Piotr Nowak, Ms. Marta Lefik, Mr. Donald Hyun Kiolbassa, Ms. Kinga Plich, Mr. Grzegorz DÄ…bek


Seated: Mrs. Carmen Cason, Deputy Consul Gustavo Terrera Standing: Mayor Jim Cason of Coral Gables

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Governor Charlie Crist, Pres. Lech Walesa

Consul Pawel Pietrasienski, Consul Ewa Pietrasienska, Ms. Elzbieta Golebiewska, Hon. Consul John Petkus

Mrs. Barbara Muze, Mrs. Jadwiga Gewert, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Ms. Lynne Schaefer

Mr. Thomas Gallinar, Ms. Luccia Lowenthal

Amb. Ryszard Schnepf, Mrs. Dorota Schnepf

Mr. Juan Avila, Dr. Ewa Jachimowicz, Dr. Tomasz Osolkowski


Ms. Nina Mlodzinska de Rovira, Mr. Allen Bozek

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Mr. Ali Torabi, Countess Brigitte Cooper, Mrs. Agnieszka Gray, Mr. Keith Gray, Countess Barbara Pagowska Cooper, Ms. Renata Lobodzinski, Countess Izabella Budys, Countess Janelle Cooper

Seated: Ms. Isabell Wnekowicz, Dr. Krystyna Wnekowicz, Dr. Janina Styperek, Mrs. Wioletta Imber Standing: Mr. William Wnekowicz, Dr. Januariusz Styperek, Dr. Ludmila Wrobel, Mr. Ludwik Wnekowicz, Mr. Victor Imber, Dr. Jerzy Wrobel

Seated: Ms. Agnieszka Konsorska, Countess Izabella Budys, Ms. Renata Lobodzinski, Mrs. Viola Kruszelnicki, Dr. Renata Cymer Standing: Mr. Jacek Tatara, Dr. Jolanta Tatara, Mr. Krzysztof Kruszelnicki

Dr. JJ Centurion, Mrs. Bunny Centurion, Ms. Lili Jimenez, Mr. Ron Sellers, Ms. Susan Warriner, Mrs. Teresa Lowenthal, Mr. Paul Lowenthal

Seated: Ms. Lynne Schaefer, Mrs. Barbara Muze, Mrs. Anna Lukaszek-Guerrero Standing: Prof. Stanislaw Wnuk, Mrs. Elzbieta Wnuk, Mrs. Jadwiga Gewert, Dr. Maria Sarach-Kozlowski, Mr. Janusz Kozlowski, Mrs. Joanna Wiela, Mr. Ignacio Guerrera, Mrs. Katarzyna Zielinski, Mr. Douglas Evans

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Ms. Katarzyna Kardas, Mr. Phil Sauer, Ms. Cheryl Model, Cpt. Danny Kipnis


Ms. Gabriela Goodrich, Mrs. Krystyna Nagorski, Mr. Andrew Nagorski, Dr. Alma Kadragic, Dr. Maria Michejda, Ms. Katarzyna Zawitkowska

Seated: Mr. James J. Klein, Ms. Bianka Ukleja, Mr. Carlos Enrique Sanches, Ms. Ania Navas Standing: Mrs. Anna Ukleja, Dr. Andrzej Ukleja

Seated: Mrs. Margorzata Woo, Ms. Helena Kolenda, Mr. Richard Merwin, Mrs. Slibicki Standing: Mr. Marek Chojnacki, Ms. Ewa Osiowy

Mrs. Jadwiga Lobrow, Mr. Chester Lobrow, Countess Cheryl d’August, Count Andrew d’August, Dr. Ania Pasck-Lobrow, Dr. Tomasz Lobrow

The Gold Medals, the highest honor bestowed by the Institute, went to two outstanding individuals. Mrs. Maria Teresa Carrizo Sliva, a prima ballerina from Argentina who married a fellow dancer of Polish descent, has given her expertise and love of dance to countless performers and groups throughout the world. She founded the very successful company, New Century Dance Company in Miami, and her choreography continues to inspire and excite audiences with its artistry, vibrancy and originality. Mr. Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski, born and educated in Poland, eventually settled in the U.S., where his long career as a civil/industrial engineer with over 50 patents to his credit have earned him the highest honors in his chosen fields. He is a prolific writer of Polish and European history, author of several atlases, an accomplished lexicographer, and his editorials, columns and reviews have appeared in hundreds of publications throughout the world.

Ms. Lucia Puentes, Mr. Aldo Martin, Ms. Ann Centurion, Mr. Rafael Portuondo, Ms. Francesca Lowenthal, Mr. Randy Shaw

The Lech Walesa Media Award was presented personally by the legendary Solidarity leader to author Mr. Andrew Nagorski for his dedication to the cause of freedom and writing about Poland’s history and culture. As the senior editor of Newsweek from 2000 to 2008, Nagorski handled the expansion of the news magazine to several countries, including Newsweek Polska in 2001. In 2011, Poland’s President Bronislaw Komorowski Baron Cyril Woods, Ms. Helve Massakas, Dame Lorna Woods, Judge E. Wayne Bachus


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Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mr. Jan Karaszewski with Polanie dancers

Dr. John Stack, Mrs. Nancy Stack Savoie, Ms. Emily Gresham, Dr. Rebecca Friedman, Mr. Pedro Botta

awarded him the Cavalier’s Cross for his reporting from Poland about the Solidarity movement. A Special Recognition was also given to Dr. Witold Zajewski, a family practitioner in the Chicago area, for his ongoing support, medical care giving and charitable contributions to the Polish-American community. During the dinner, which was an homage to traditional Argentinian grill with the delicious wines supplied by Mr. Damian ValenzuelaMayer of the Latin American Invest Corp of Argentina, the guests were treated to remarkable performances by the New Century Dance Company. Seductive and dramatic tangos depicting old-as-time stories of love won and lost were skillfully choreographed and danced especially for the Ball in honor of the love Poland and Argentina have for this passionate dance. That some of the dancers were Mrs. Carrizo Sliva’s children was an extra special touch. Guests were then treated to rousing malambos performed by two “gauchos,” each man competing against the other with complicated percussive footwork while playing large animal hide-covered drums to create thrilling, yet melodic music with a compelling beat. One of the men used a boleadoras (two long leather lassos with a wooden ball on one end - one lasso for each hand) that he whirled in complex

Tango dancers of the New Century Dance Company

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Argentinian Malambos performers

Mr. Thomas Ross, Countess Entrude de Suiza

Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz, Ms. Francesca Graham

Mrs. Maria Teresa Carrizo Sliva and family

Seated: Mr. Steve Karski, Mrs. Barbara Tomkowski, Ms. Sonia Tomkowski, Mr. Zdzislaw Wieckowski Standing: Mr. Robert Niziol, Mr. Zbigniew Slabicki, Mr. Slawomir Tomkowski

Mrs. Frances Burzynski, Mr. Janusz Burzynski

City and the White Eagle in Buffalo. Several members of the PANGEA Alliance, a non-profit organization that promotes entrepreneurship and innovation as well as connects young Polish professionals around the world, also attended. How refreshing it was to have so many young guests - the future of Polonia who are already making significant strides in business, entertainment, government and education. It was a wonderful mix of people from all walks of life!

formations, striking the floor in rhythmic beats and creating another layer of complex music. The standing ovations proved just how wonderful all of the performances were. Around midnight, the Polish-American Folk Dance Company “Polanie� from Sarasota, Florida performed a graceful and regal Polonaise as befitting this 17th century dance, and invited all guests to join them in a colorful procession on the dance floor.

Once again, the American Institute of Polish Culture hosted an evening of traditional grandeur and timeless elegance enjoyed by many members and old and new friends in very modern and stylish Miami.

There were many new faces at the festivities including a large group of government and community officials from Rzeszow, Poland, friends and family of the Latin American Invest Corp., the Polish American Business Club, and editors and journalists from the Polish newspapers Nowy Dziennik in New York

Ms. Emma Kiworkowa, Mr. Mariusz Bernartowicz

Mr. Mike Skronski, Ms. Kim Fontaine-Skronski

Baron Jason Psaltides, Mr. Nabil Achkar Mr. John Orietta, Mrs. Hoda Orietta


Dr. Carlos Gomez, Yvonne Gomez, Mrs. Holly Gomez

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A Very Special Brunch Sunday, February 2, 2014


n Sunday, 200 guests attended a lovely and sumptuous brunch in the Eden Roc’s ballroom. Several attendees from the Ball, including all of the awardees, and many others spent three hours meeting new people and catching up with long time friends. President Lech Walesa graciously posed for photographs with guests and signed his autobiography, The Road to Truth. The Polanie folk dancers performed graceful numbers in traditional Polish costumes and the Frank Hubbell Band provided the melodies. It was a fitting finale to another wonderful International Polonaise Ball weekend.

Mrs. Donna Kyparisis, Dr. Jerzy Kyparisis, Ms. Iga Henderson, Mr. Leonard Nock

Countess Janelle Cooper, Countess Barbara Pogowska Cooper, Pres. Lech Walesa, Countess Brigitte Cooper

Father Tomasz Jegierski, Father Ian Boyd

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel with a government deligation from Rzeszow, Poland

Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Miss Nel Velez-Paszyc, Pres. Lech Walesa, Amb. Ryszard Schnepf

Mr. & Mrs. Andrew Nowakowski, Mrs. Agnieszka Kaczkowska, Mr. Andrew Weitz, Mr. Leszek “Nick” Sadowski

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Mrs. Maria Teresa Carrizo Sliva, Mr. Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski, Mr. Andrew Nagorski

Mrs. Willman, Mr. Andrew Hubert Willman, Ms. Otilia Capraru

Mrs. Ela Piotrovsky, Mr. Ralph Piotrovsky

Mrs. Teresa Szczepanik, Ms. Eva Kwasnik, Ms. Eva Kordos

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Pres. Lech Walesa, Dr. Patricia Riley

Ms. Daniela Hartman, Mrs. Alexandra Bobrek, Mr. Cristina Bobrek, Ms. Cecelia Lawinski


Mr. Bogdan Panek and family

Mrs. Agnieszka Gray, Ms. Lucy Dolinski

Mr. Artur Zielinski, Mrs. Katarzyna Zielinski

Ms. Charlene Delaney, Ms. Delores Strand, Ms. Martha Pachnik

Time Capsules

Events that changed the face of Poland By Beata Paszyc

Ju ly and Au g ust , 1 9 8 0 The government-imposed rise in food prices launches an avalanche of strikes in shipyards and factories across the country. The workers in a Gdansk shipyard protest the lay-offs of their leaders, including Lech Walesa. They call for freedom for political prisoners and for legal formation of independent trade unions. On August 31st, Walesa and Vice Prime Minister Mieczyslaw Jagielski sign an agreement.

Novemb er 1 0 , 1 9 8 0 After months of government-incited uncertainty, the 3 millionstrong Independent Self-Governing Trade Union Solidarity, or NSZZ Solidarnosc, is officially registered.

May 1 3 , 1 9 8 1 A Turkish militant, Mehmet Ali Agca, shoots and severely wounds Pope John Paul II at St. Peter’s Square in Rome. The Polish-born Pope is considered the spiritual father of Solidarity, and the assassination plot is believed to originate in Moscow.

D e cemb er 1 3 , 1 9 8 1 A long-feared military intervention orchestrated by Moscow is finally enforced. The communist government imposes nationwide Martial Law marked by wide-spread arrests, curfews, wire-tapping, postal censorship, and heavy tanks patrolling the neighborhoods. Thousands are detained and hundreds killed. It lasts until July 22, 1983; however even after Martial Law was lifted, some of the political prisoners were not released until the general amnesty in 1986. 57

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Time Capsules

Events that changed the face of Poland May 1 4 , 1 9 8 3 The communist militia beats to death a recent high school graduate, Grzegorz Przemyk, a son of an opposition poet. Thousands attend his funeral to demonstrate their resistance and solidarity with the young martyr.

Ju ne, 1 9 8 3 John Paul II visits Poland for the second time since he became Pope in 1978. He calls on the communist government to stop political persecutions and to respect human and civil rights. He meets with Walesa.

D e c e mb e r 1 0 , 1 9 8 3 Lech Walesa receives the Nobel Peace Prize. Closely watched and interrogated by the government, he is not permitted to leave the country. His wife Danuta accepts the prize in Sweden on his behalf.

O c tob er 1 9 , 1 9 8 4 The communist Secret Police kidnap and murder Father Jerzy Popieluszko, a popular defiant priest detested by the regime for helping the persecuted and preaching resistance.

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Time Capsules

Events that changed the face of Poland Spr i ng and Su m me r, 1 98 8 By the late 1980’s both society and the communist government find themselves losing momentum. The attempts to introduce reforms that would narrow the economic gap between communist Poland and the West seem futile. A new wave of strikes breaks out in shipyards, factories and mines. The Ministry of Interior resumes talks with Solidarity.

Novemb er 3 0 , 1 9 8 8 To the astonishment and delight of the public, the government agrees to a televised debate between Walesa and Alfred Miodowicz, one of the top communist party officials. The charismatic Solidarity leader overshadows the old-school demagogue and wins the debate.

Febr u ar y to Apr i l, 1 98 9 On February 6th the unimaginable comes true. The communist leaders and the dissidents - the oppressors and the oppressed - meet to talk. The historic “round table talks� lead to a gradual power shift, and Solidarity is promised 35% of the Parliament seats, an independent newspaper, Gazeta Wyborcza, and television time.

Ju ne 4 , 1 9 8 9 In semi-free elections, Solidarity wins nearly all of the allotted seats in Parliament. Although the communists now realize how unpopular they have become, because of the round table agreement, the Parliament appoints General Wojciech Jaruzelski, a top communist military official, to become President.


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Time Capsules

Events that changed the face of Poland Au g ust 2 4 , 1 9 8 9 Tadeusz Mazowiecki, a long time opposition activist and member of the round table talks, becomes the first non-communist Prime Minister in 50 years.

Janu ar y 1 , 1 9 9 0 New Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Leszek Balcerowicz introduces sweeping economic reforms - free market replaces the old socialist economy. For many the large scale privatization, the abundance of new products, services and market-controlled prices are a blessing, but others find the new, competitive reality shocking and confusing.

D e cemb er 2 3 , 1 9 9 0 The communist President resigns. After an aggressive campaign, Lech Walesa wins the popular election and becomes the President of Poland.

S eptemb er 1 6 , 1 9 9 3 After years of tough negotiations with Moscow, the government finally forces the Russian military out of the country. The last Soviet tank leaves Poland, ending half a century of occupation.

March 1 2 , 1 9 9 9 Poland officially joins NATO, sealing its military allegiance with the West.

May 1 , 2 0 0 4 Poland becomes part of the European Union. Although some citizens fear economic disadvantages and the loss of sovereignty resulting from this step, for many Poles the EU membership opens new doors and creates new opportunities.

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Time Capsules

Events that changed the face of Poland Apr i l 2 , 2 0 0 5 Poland mourns the death of its beloved son, Pope John Paul II. His role in the country’s transition to freedom cannot be overstated. He leaves behind a legacy of moral revolution and national unity.

Ju ne 4 , 2 0 1 4 President Barack Obama, the Presidents of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Lithuania and Ukraine, the King and the Queen of Belgium and other high-ranking delegations attend the main ceremony marking the 25th anniversary of Poland’s liberation from communism (“Freedom Day”) at Castle Square near the Royal Castle in Warsaw.

Thank you, Poland,

for your triumph, not of arms, but of the human spirit. 61

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Freedom Day


n Wednesday, June 4, 2014, all eyes were on Warsaw, Poland’s Castle Square to witness an historic event in celebration of 25 years of freedom. The leaders and dignitaries of many countries came together to honor the end of the tyranny that shackled Poland for so long, and as a unified front for all people of all nations, to know that freedom is possible and must be a natural birthright of the world. The President of Poland, Bronislaw Komorowski, said, “Poland and many other countries found themselves under the domination of the Soviet Union, in a world ruled by Stalin... but our dreams of freedom and ambitions survived. The source of our strength was national tradition.” He paid tribute to those who fought for freedom, “First we numbered tens, then hundreds, then thousands. In 1980, after the victorious strikes initiated by shipyard workers, we numbered 10 million.” In addition, “Poland’s fate was decided by the entire nation, who won by means of voting cards without using violence or spilling even one drop of blood.” The overthrow of communism inspired similar processes in the rest of east Europe, which led to the disintegration of the Soviet empire. “The wish for freedom is contagious, that’s why all tyrants fear it. Freedom seen from close up inspires human strivings. Its triumphant march began in Poland.”

World leaders and delegates at the Royal Castle celebrating the Polish Day of Freedom.

between liberty and oppression, between solidarity and intolerance, Poland’s progress shows the enduring strength of the ideals that we cherish as a free people.” He praised the success of the Polish economic and social transformation. “Here we see the strength of free markets and the results of hard reforms - gleaming skyscrapers soaring above the city and superhighways across this country, high-tech hubs and living standards that previous generations of Poles could only imagine. This is the new Poland you have built - an economic “Miracle on the Vistula.”

During his speech, President Barack Obama noted, “Poland reminds us that sometimes the smallest steps, however imperfect, can ultimately tear down walls, can ultimately transform the world. But of course, your victory that June day was only the beginning. For democracy is more than just elections. True democracy, real prosperity, lasting security -these are neither simply given nor imposed from the outside. They must be earned and built from within. And in that ageold contest of ideas, between freedom and authoritarianism,

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President Obama ended his speech in appreciation. “Thank you, Poland, for your triumph, not of arms, but of the human spirit, the truth that carries us forward. There is no change without risk, and no progress without sacrifice, and no freedom without solidarity. Dziękuję, Polsko! God bless Poland.”




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Lech Wałesa’s Starring Role By Andrew Nagorski

Which is exactly why back in Moscow, the leadership was increasingly alarmed by Solidarity’s rise. On a daily basis I monitored the Soviet media’s ominous pronouncements about the dangers that this labor movement represented. At the end of August, Krysia arrived at Sheremetyevo Airport at almost midnight on a flight that had been delayed several hours. Coming to meet her, I watched as she maneuvered our children and the luggage through a long customs line. To my relief, the customs officer, a young woman, saw how exhausted our children were and started waving through her luggage without inspecting them. But at the last minute, she told Krysia to open her purse and plucked out a key chain. It bore no inscription, only a picture of Lech Walesa and Pope John Paul II. Suddenly furious, she demanded all the luggage back and spent the next three hours combing through everything. It didn’t matter that Solidarity was an officially recognized trade union in Poland at the time. To her, Walesa and the Pope represented a mortal threat to the Soviet system. As it turns out, she was absolutely right. In fact, I’d argue that in the history books that will be written outside of Poland about the broad sweep of the twentieth century, only two Poles will be inevitably mentioned: the men pictured on Krysia’s key chain. They will be hailed as the prime movers of the events that led not only to the roundtable accords and the first semi-free elections of 1989 but also to the chain reaction of tumbling communist regimes throughout the old Soviet bloc—and the disintegration of the Soviet Union itself.

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n 1981, when I was Newsweek’s Moscow bureau chief, my wife Krysia and our children spent most of August visiting her family in Czestochowa. I joined them for a week, and was immediately infected by the sense of excitement that was evident everywhere. Poles reveled in their rediscovered freedoms, with Solidarity openly challenging Gen. Wojciech Jaruzelski’s regime at every turn. While many people worried about the possibility of a government clampdown and in the West there was increasing talk about a possible Soviet invasion, the general mood was one of defiance and hope—banishing the sense of pervasive fear that was characteristic of countries in the Soviet bloc.

For those of us from the Western press who were fortunate enough to chronicle these seismic events, Walesa’s central role was never in doubt. That is not to say that we knew what the outcome would be any earlier than anyone

else did. We were not prophets and, like many Solidarity activists, we assumed that there was a long struggle ahead. Most of us would never have predicted in those early days that the Soviet system would crumble as quickly as it did. And those of us who reported from Poland understood that Walesa, his advisors and followers were often at odds with each other. But Solidarity garnered its strength from a remarkable coalition of workers and intellectuals who dedicated themselves to a common cause even as personal rivalries, tensions and jealousies were all too evident. Nonetheless, in the emerging narrative of Solidarity, Walesa was always front and center. One reason is that every narrative needs its central character and Walesa fit the part perfectly. His very imperfections—his quirky, often amusing, sometimes prickly personality, along with his sometimes peculiar utterances that were hard to deconstruct in Polish and even more so to translate into English or any other language (“I am for and even against…”) made him a complex hero. But as the electrician who scrambled over the wall of the Gdansk shipyard, he embodied the story of the workers challenging and exposing the myth of the workers’ state. The fact that Walesa was as capable of directing his jokes at himself as at his opponents endeared him to the journalists all the more. Writers like self-awareness, they like irony. But what they really like most is someone who has a sense of mission, who is willing to risk everything to win everything. And a character who can truly inspire at those critical moments which later are seen as history’s turning points. The narrative arc of Walesa’s story in the 1980s basically wrote itself. While now most people recall Walesa and Solidarity’s highs and lows—the triumphant agreement on August 31,


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The mood was hardly triumphant. Later that day, about 3,000 people gathered for an emotional mass at St. Brigid’s Church nearby, with Walesa and Home Army veterans in front of the altar. As the faithful spilled out of the church, some began to chant Solidarity slogans. But spotting a cordon of police, the crowd quietly dispersed. Back in his apartment, Walesa was philosophical about the palpable lack of energy or optimism of the movement’s followers that day. “You have to wait for the right moment,” he told me. When I had parked my car in front of his apartment building, secret policemen pulled out their cameras with long lenses and openly shot photos of me. The message was clear: we’re watching everyone who has anything to do with Walesa and Solidarity, especially you foreign correspondents. But, of course, even then Walesa’s international reputation accounted for the fact that he was able to live above ground and operate in the open, while someone like Zbigniew Bujak, the leader of Underground Solidarity, was the country’s most wanted fugitive. During that same period I was able to interview Bujak, but only after activists organized an elaborate chain of people to convey me to our rendezvous point in a way to throw off anyone trying to tail us. I was escorted through crumbling courtyards and switched cars three or four times.

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It was readily apparent that there were tensions between the underground and Walesa, with Bujak issuing strike calls at times that were immediately countermanded by Walesa. In some ways, the tensions within Solidarity could rebound to the movement’s benefit; Walesa could argue that the government needed to ease up because otherwise the militants would be hard to control. But as with everything Walesa did there was a strong element of personal ambition.

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1980 legalizing the union, the imposition of martial law on December 13, 1981 and the elections on June 4, 1989— certain moments in between are most vividly etched in my memory. On a warm day in August 1985, when the Jaruzelski regime was boasting that the country was “normalized” and that Solidarity was “broken,” I returned to Gdansk to observe how Walesa and others were marking the approaching fifth anniversary of the accords that had led to the initial flurry of hope for the now banned movement. At 2 p.m., the end of the first shift at the shipyard, Walesa walked out of the gate wearing a “Man of Iron” t-shirt and holding a bouquet of flowers. He placed the flowers at the foot of the memorial to the workers who died in the protests of 1970, as a small group of supporters, no more than 150 in all, clustered around him. Raising their hands in the V-forvictory sign, they joined Walesa in singing “Poland is not yet lost.”

After 1989, I asked Bujak about that period and how much he was aware of Walesa’s motives. The former underground leader shook his head. “I underestimated to what extent Lech was worried about my standing and how far he was willing to go to lower it,” he said. As Andrzej Celinski, who was part of the Solidarity leader’s circle of intellectual advisors in the early days, told me later: “He was fighting not only for victory, he was fighting for his position after the victory over the communists. And that was during the worst period, when no one dreamed of victory.” Most of us who were covering the events in Poland were hardly surprised by Walesa’s personal behavior that so often mixed personal ambition with his ambitions for Solidarity. He could think large—for his country and for himself. After the 1989 elections when he decided that Solidarity had to take charge of the government and the country’s catastrophic economy, many of his own followers thought he was committing a huge mistake. He was willing to gamble otherwise. It’s only when history airbrushes national heroes that people forget that most of them had very complex, often difficult personalities, and with rare exceptions, were never completely selfless even as they performed seemingly miraculously feats, defying incredible odds. In fact, their personal ambitions were a key ingredient in their victories. Walesa wore both his personal strengths and weaknesses on his sleeve, not bothering to disguise his mercurial emotions as more polished leaders do. In his case, normal rules didn’t necessarily apply. Many Western journalists made the mistake of starting an interview with Walesa the same way they would with any contentious leader—by asking him a vague, broad question, thinking that would put him at ease, before asking anything more pointed. Nothing irritated Walesa more. He considered such questions a waste of his time and often would cut the interview short. I remember one colleague returning from Gdansk completely frustrated and angry, having been cut off after about three minutes. My advice to any colleagues who asked: start Walesa off right away with a challenging question. He would almost always then become emotionally engaged.


But Walesa also could easily charm Western journalists. When he stayed in Buckingham Palace and joked that he couldn’t find Danuta in their huge bed, many Poles back home cringed. The journalists in London loved it. More significantly, he knew how to rise to a historic occasion. Stepping up to the podium to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress on Nov. 15, 1989, he intoned “We the People,” echoing the opening words of the U.S. Constitution. From that moment on he had every member of the Congress standing and applauding wildly. From that moment, he represented not just Poland; he represented the drive for freedom everywhere. Yes, Walesa’s reputation faded a bit as he offered a far less impressive performance as president. And as a former president, he continues to let slip more than the occasional off-the-cuff remark that comes back to haunt him. But much of the world hasn’t followed that saga. Poland and its struggles is no longer the center of

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international attention that it once was, precisely because it is now seen largely as a post-communist success story. And the man who is still most associated with the struggle to give Poland the opportunity for that success is Lech Walesa. This article appeared in a special edition of the Polish magazine Focus (Sept. 17, 2013). Reprinted with permission.

Andrew Nagorski is an awardwinning journalist who spent more than three decades as a foreign correspondent and editor for Newsweek. From 2000 to 2008, he handled the expansion of foreign language editions, including Newsweek Polska, which has become Poland’s leading news magazine since it began publication in 2001. In November 2009, Poland’s Foreign Minister, Radoslaw Sikorski, presented Nagorski with the newly-created Bene Merito award for his reporting from Poland about the Solidarity movement in the 1980’s. In 2011, Poland’s President, Bronislaw Komorowski, awarded him the Cavalier’s Cross for the same reason. This year, he received the Lech Walesa Media Award from the President himself during AIPC’s 42nd International Polonaise Ball in Miami. Nagorski’s most recent non-fiction book, Hitlerland: American Eyewitnesses to the Nazi Rise to Power, has received rave reviews in numerous publications throughout the world. His first novel, Last Stop Vienna, about a young German who joins the early Nazi movement and is then propelled into a confrontation with Hitler, was on the Washington Post’s bestseller list.

CR Cosmopolitan Review

For English readers interested in things Polish, CR brings you book and film reviews, commentary and feature articles you will not find in your local – or national – newspapers. Where else will you read about HOLLYWOOD.PL and the brilliant alumni of the National Film School in Lodz; the loving Maharaja who sheltered Polish children and the beautiful cabaret star, Ordonka, who accompanied the orphaned children; the rediscovery of Stefan Norblin’s art in India; historian Alexandra Richie’s monumental history of the Warsaw Uprising; a profile of Zamosc, the Renaissance citta ideale commissioned by Jan Zamoyski and designed by Bernardo Morando; and the enchanting and innocent romance of an American boy and a Polish girl in postwar Europe.


For these and many more articles on cultural and historical topics, by writers who live in Poland or anywhere where the Polish diaspora can be found, and all in English, there is only one place to go: Cosmopolitan Review, because Poles are found everywhere in our cosmos.

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Last Goodbyes It is with great sorrow that we say goodbye to our dear friends and Board members who were an integral part of the Institute throughout the years. They will live on in our memories. Our thoughts and prayers go to their families. Count Wlodzimierz Grocholski passed away in June 2014. He was a longtime friend to the Institute, serving as its Director in the 1970’s. Wlodzimierz was born on December 10, 1936 to a noble family; he was the eighth of the ten children of Adam Remigiusz Grocholski and Barbara Swiatopelk-Czetwertynska. As the Executive Director of AIPC in Miami he worked to promote Polish culture and heritage in South Florida. He and his beautiful wife, Magdalena, and their five children often participated at the Institute’s activities and events, including the holiday parties and the International Polonaise Ball. In the mid-90’s Grocholski patented a dehydration system, a technology for drying fruits naturally. A man of deep faith and strong convictions, he was unrelenting in defending his values. With extraordinary charm and unbeatable wit and intellect, his home was always open to all. He was absolutely unique in every way - a true Renaissance Man. He will be remembered for his elegance, charisma, wonderful sense of humor and exuberance.

Count Wlodzimierz Grocholski


Former Director of AIPC, George Riabov died after a prolonged illness in March 2013. Mr. Riabov’s expertise as a scholar and historian of Russian art made his contributions in the early years of the Institute immeasurable. He was the driving force behind extremely successful art events that were recognized throughout America for their sophistication and elegance, and his seemingly endless knowledge of art’s role in antiquity to current times was highly regarded. Besides the Institute, his exhibits, lectures, and tours were sponsored by the Smithsonian, MOMA, the United Nations, Department of State and other educational institutions. Olga Zoltan summed up her brother’s character perfectly in a letter to Lady Blanka in 2014. “George was an idealist, a dreamer, extremely devoted to his country of birth, especially to the town of Torun. Thank you, and your Institute, for providing him the opportunities to be immersed in the culture of his youth.”

George Riabov


Dr. Zygmunt Turski, a great supporter and friend of AIPC for many years, died in September 2013. Born on September 23, 1918 in Warsaw he became a decorated WWII veteran. Lieutenant Colonel Turski fought in major battles that lead to liberating Poland, including the Warsaw Uprising of 1944, and was on the front lines of offenses against Berlin. Professionally he was a Chemical Engineer and was awarded several patents. He also held a doctorate in literature. Dr. Turski generously volunteered his time and was active at the Institute in Miami, where he was a Vice President and headed the Special Projects department. His fields of expertise were Polish – Jewish relations and historical errors. He wrote numerous newspaper articles about those subjects, as well as complied a list of historical errors and omissions. His long involvement with the Board of Education paved the way for him in correcting the many mistakes and oversights that books contained and the misinformation that was being erroneously taught in schools. Dr. Turski will be remembered as a kind and patriotic man, and he will be greatly missed. •••••••


are the loved to die. For love is immortality. Emily Dickinson

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Dr. Zygmunt Turski

Men Behind Images By Beata Paszyc


picture is worth a thousand words. “Pictures speak louder then words.” We hear these said quite often and we agree with the sentiment. An image is perceived instantly and intensely, and evokes an immediate response in our perception. A single picture can convey complex notions as we absorb a large amount of data quickly. Maybe not all of us however realize that these sayings were coined in the early 1900’s. The expression, “Use a picture... it is worth a thousand words” appeared for the first time in a 1911 article quoting newspaper editor Arthur Brisbane discussing journalism and publicity. A similar phrase, “One Look Is Worth A Thousand Words,” appeared in a 1913 newspaper advertisement for the Piqua Auto Supply House of Piqua, Ohio. It is believed by some that the modern use of the phrase stems from an article by Fred R. Barnard in the advertising trade journal Printers’ Ink, promoting the use of images in advertisements that appeared on the sides of streetcars. The December 8, 1921 issue also used, “One Look is Worth A Thousand Words.” No matter how these phrases began, one thing remains the same. An image can stir your emotions, bring back memories, and put a smile on your face or a tear on your cheek. Do you ever wonder who was behind the image, or, rather, who stood in front of it and took a photograph that captured a moment? Or whose mind created such a universally recognized symbol? What was their perception, their thoughts as they looked through the view finder and clicked instantly on a shutterfly or began drawing pictures that could stand for a cause?

There are two names that come to my mind whose images have become synonymous with the Solidarity movement. SOLIDARNOŚĆ Jerzy Janiszewski, the man behind the Solidarity logo, was part of the free trade union movement and was actually at the shipyard during the strikes in August 1980. He witnessed the dynamics of people fighting for their right to be represented by the trade unions and watched people helping each other, bringing food and money to the gates of the shipyard. He was given the challenge to create a logo which would show the unified force of the people for the cause they represented. He chose not to do a slogan, but just one powerful word: SOLIDARNOŚĆ. He has said, “… for me the logo represents the power of the union of the people who had been present in the shipyard of Gdansk during the strike. It represents what I have lived through the energy, the hope… these thousands of people who had resisted and those who had supported them, perceived the logo as the symbol of their union, of the compromise that had been born among them and those who helped them to overcome the fear by turning it into a dynamism that gave them greater confidence into their fight to freedom.” Janiszewski took his inspiration from the hand-painted signs that appeared on the walls of buildings in Gdansk, signs that gave hope and showed society that everyone was in ‘the fight’ together. The lettering symbolically depicts people marching close to each other and supporting each other. His logo was enthusiastically accepted by the workers, yet Janiszewski never thought that this 67

Apocalypse Now

symbol would ever leave the walls of the shipyard. He was wrong. Today millions of people around the world see SOLIDARNOŚĆ and know immediately what it is. An independent graphic designer, Janiszewski left Poland for Germany during Martial Law. In 1993, the city of Paris gave him an artist atelier where he worked until 1996. He moved back to Poland for couple of years, but eventually settled in Spain. Throughout his career, Janiszewski has created hundreds of logos, posters, and graphics for publishing houses and advertising groups, as well as cities and companies. He has worked with several television stations, such as the BBC, Canal+, TF1, TVP, and continues to produce images for government agencies like the Embassy of France in Warsaw, Pompidou Centre, UNESCO, Amnesty International. He has also designed several stage sets and open air installations.

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His first US exhibit, “The Graphic and Fine Art of Poland’s Jerzy Janiszewski: The Artist Whose Graphic Design Changed History,” ran from December, 2012 to January, 2013 at the Charles Krause Reporting Fine Art Gallery in Washington, DC in cooperation with the Embassy of Poland. The exhibit included a rare Solidarity poster from 1980, buried underground for seven years, hidden from the prying eyes of the secret police. Media response to the opening show was positive, with it being among Artforum’s “Critics Pick” and chosen as one of the “10 Best Gallery Exhibitions” of 2012 by The Washington Post. Jerzy Janiszewski has designed many more memorable logos, one for the Polish Presidency of EU as well as the one for this year’s celebrations of 25 years of Freedom. The man behind the logo has created an enduring symbol that represents Poland and her peoples’ heroic fight for freedom in the 20th century.

on the cover of Newsweek, and his work documenting the Solidarity movement graced the pages of such internationally recognized magazines as Time, Der Spiegel and Forbes. Niedenthal was born in 1950 to a family of Polish WWII refugees in London. His father, who was born in Lviv, was a public prosecutor in Vilna before the war. After 1945 he was forced to settle in the United Kingdom, where he started working for the Ministry of Education, earning him the “Member of the Order of the British Empire” from Queen Elisabeth II. He was influential in helping Polish people displaced to England receive scholarships. Niedenthal’s mother worked for the émigré Polish Telegraphic Agency. He first visited Poland in 1963 and traveled there frequently thereafter; yet he never imagined that later on in life he would leave England and relocate to Poland, the motherland of his Parents.


He started his adventure with photography at age 11 when he got his first camera while in a boarding school, and spent a lot of time documenting the life of the school. His fascination with photography led him to the London College of Printing, one of the most prestigious photography schools in the UK. After graduating at 22, he landed a job at Features International, specializing in photojournalism and creating books depicting peoples’ lives. During a visit to Poland 1973, he decided to stay and be a freelance photographer. A colleague once quipped that, “Chris lived from communism,” since he visually documented the most important events of that era. Interestingly enough, to avoid some red tape, he was the only accredited foreign photographer who lived in Poland during that time.

Chris Niedenthal is another noteworthy person behind the image. This photographer, who captured the iconic “Apocalypse Now” picture taken during the first days of Martial Law in 1981, was also behind the camera during Pope John Paul II’s first pilgrimage to Poland in 1979. His photo of this historic occasion was used

But it is the human interest photos, the moments depicting the simple lives of people - a child sleeping quietly in the field, laundry drying on a clothesline, drab blocs of apartments where the majority of Poles lived in

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Marshal Law, ZOMO, May 3, 1981

every city, empty shelves in the grocery stores - that detailed the stark reality. When the 1980’s began Niedenthal threw himself in the midst of the shipyard strike in Gdansk. He and his friend, war correspondent Michael Dobbs, were allowed in the shipyard, yet Niedenthal was forbidden by the authorities to take photos. He reminisces about one time, “They took us in, sat us down - me next to a guy with a mustache who I later found out was Lech Walesa, whom I knew nothing about. I just interpreted the conversation between Dobbs and the director of the shipyard.”

Strike, Aug. 15, 1980 Lenin Shipyard, Gdansk - relaxing workers

However, he did take some “forbidden photos” that day of debating shipyard workers, exhausted men resting on the grass, and strikers with tension etched into their faces. Photos he took later circulated the globe - a triumphant Walesa on the gate of the shipyard, the signing of the documents, and people clamoring to be part of history in the making. He literally photographed everything. If you leaf through issues of Newsweek during 1980 and 1981, most of the photos of Poland are by Niedenthal. So how did the picture of “Apocalyse Now” come to stand for Martial Law? After midnight on December 13, 1981, another photographer alerted Niedenthal that something was up and they should head to downtown Warsaw immediately. The roads were blocked by militia, so they spent the night at an abandoned apartment, only to find out in the morning that the phone lines were cut off and the one available TV station showed General Jaruzelski announcing Martial Law. Fearing they might get arrested, they left the apartment and encountered a procession of church goers, who, despite the law against groups congregating, went on. Then Niedenthal noticed something that grabbed his attention. A movie theater named Moscow had a big billboard announcing the film “Apocalypse Now” by Francis Ford Coppola, with gray tanks and uniformed militia milling about the snow in front. The imagery so encapsulated the situation in Poland that he had to shoot it. Afraid of getting too close to the action, he found a building across the street and took a photo from a hallway window, freezing a moment of terror that all Poles faced daily during those gloomy days.

Warsaw butcher shop, 1980’s

Being a photographer myself I know that each photo taken has a story, a thought that crosses my mind when I click to preserve a moment. And it stays with you, carving a memory that you hope will affect the observer with the same intensity as it was taken.

breath away will be remembered. Let us mindfully place them in our “virtual gallery” of faces, places and landscapes that we carry in our memory.

Next time an image stops you in your tracks, look closely for the creator’s name; perhaps you will learn a bit about As we all go through life and see a mul- them and grow a healthy respect for titude of pictures, only the ones that their work. Their life stories just might be strike a personal chord, that take our as compelling as the image they created.

These mental photographs of emotionally charged events are the visual soundtracks of our lives...

It is images like these that we carry in our minds, powerful and unsettling, until memory begins to lose its grip. These mental photographs of emotionally charged events are the visual soundtracks of our lives, and they enrich us by showing places, events and people we would otherwise not be able to experience. Though distant, they touch our hearts and minds.

Poland, 1960’s


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An Opportunity Seized By Radoslaw Sikorski, Poland’s Foreign Minister on April 29, 2014 to commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the EU on May 1, 2014 hen Poland’s prime minister and top diplomat signed the EU accession treaty, little can they have known that the benefits would be this immense, both for Poland and the Union

A decade ago, Poland and nine other countries joined the European Union. This was made possible thanks to our tremendous efforts to meet the membership criteria. We did not join the EU on a whim. We became part of the Union because we carried out comprehensive reforms, practically remodeling our country from the bottom up. In less than a decade, we built a democracy and a free market economy – two pillars of a united Europe. Poland made this leap by embarking on the path of systemic transformation, which began in 1989. On the 4th of June we will mark the 25th anniversary of the first pluralistic, partially free elections in our country – and the first polls in this part of Europe open to anti-communist candidates – after decades of totalitarianism. Back then, reeling from 40 years of communist rule, Poland was economically and politically bankrupt – and a headache for the world’s leaders. Today, we are helping to fix problems in Europe and beyond. We have proven that by staying the course, it is possible to turn the tide of history. And even while we celebrate our successes, we serve as a source of inspiration – be it in Ukraine, Tunisia or Myanmar – regardless of nationality, color, or creed. This jubilee year, I hope you will be inspired by the story of Poland’s road to freedom and European integration. Suffice it to say that during these ten years of EU membership, Poland’s GDP skyrocketed, increasing by 48.7%. Even in 2008–2013, during the depth of the global financial

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crisis, our economy grew by 20% – by far the best result in the EU. All this goes to show that Poles have made good use of this historic opportunity. In 2012, cumulative foreign investments in Poland were worth an estimated 178 billion euros, almost quadrupling since 2003. During the ten years of EU membership, Poland created two million jobs. The numbers speak for themselves.

This jubilee year, I hope you will be

on most EU-15 economies. The biggest winners were those who boosted trade with our region or opened up their labor markets to the new members. Indeed, all EU countries – both acceding states and those already present in the Union – gain most by tapping into the potential offered by the internal market, in particular the free movement of goods and people. A fact worth recalling, especially when faced with a torrent of cheap and mendacious Eurosceptism. Ten years is no more than an historical eyeblink. A quarter of a century covers a single generation. And yet, in this short time, we have managed to transform our part of Europe. Looking back at our success, we hope it can be replicated by those currently implementing tough reforms in our neighborhood – and often paying for it in blood, like the heroes of the Maidan. Poland’s example proves that their struggle is worth every effort.

inspired by the story of Poland’s road to freedom and European integration.

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But integration also brought benefits to our partners. It is wrong to claim that EU expansion was behind Europe’s economic downturn. In fact, macroeconomic data shows that the “Big Bang” enlargement had a positive impact

Reprinted with permission from the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Washington, DC


Meeting Walesa By Dr. Alma Kadragic


he first time I saw Poland was in June 1983 when Pope John Paul II returned to his homeland during martial law after the Solidarity Union had been abolished and its president was working at the Gdansk shipyard as an electrician, allegedly an ordinary person according to the Communist government.

Alma Kadragic, Lech Walesa, October 1983

in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Romania, and Yugoslavia. Members of the crew and translators also worked in Moscow as I did myself in 1985 after Gorbachev came to power and in 1988 when we went to Chernobyl for the twoyear anniversary of the crisis.

I was a producer in the London bureau of ABC News and went to Warsaw to manage coverage of the Pope’s visit for Good Morning America. I am not Polish; my parents emigrated to the US from Yugoslavia; because I spoke Serbo-Croatian at home, I was able to catch on to Polish fairly quickly. When you know one Slavic language, insist that everyone speak only Polish to you, listen to local radio and watch TV, pretty soon you are actually speaking and eventually reading Polish.

Mostly we covered the unraveling of Communism in Poland, from the murder of Priest Jerzy Popieluszko in l984 and the trial of his secret police killers a few months later to the Round Table talks in 1988 that led to the first free elections in the Warsaw Pact on June 4, 1989 when the Communists lost every contested seat in Parliament.

As a news junkie, I had watched the Polish drama from New York and then London and found the reality of Poland interesting. In Warsaw I learned the bureau chief would be leaving soon and asked for the job two weeks later back in London. Two months I received the position and arrived in Warsaw for the second time.

At the beginning of 1990 I left ABC News to become an entrepreneur and use my knowledge of Poland to develop a public relations and marketing company. Among the clients of Alcat Communications Warsaw was Dell Computer. Michael Dell, a business genius still in his 20s, came to Warsaw for the opening, and President Walesa attended the VIP reception. We took a photo together with Joan Edwards, the US Commercial Counselor.

Soon I was driving with a cameraman and a soundman (using cumbersome U-matic recorder and Sony camera) the nearly four-hour drive to Gdansk where Lech Walesa lived. The crew knew him very well. Before martial law, as the leader of the shipyard strike and the head of Solidarity, Lech was always before the cameras and always being interviewed.

Years passed. My company participated in the development of the Polish economy until 2003 when I sold it and left Poland. I didn’t return until 2011 when I was invited to attend the Polish PR Association’s celebration of 15 years of its code of ethics.

So we went up the stairs to the apartment – actually two apartments combined given his huge family – and entered, having been observed by the police in the car in front of the building and others nearby. Every word said in that apartment was recorded and heard by various arms of the Communist government. First of all, Lech Walesa, but also the Western journalists who interviewed him and the diplomats who visited, knew that nothing was secret.

I was back in Warsaw on June 4, 2013 to receive the Officer’s Cross for Service from President Bronislaw Komorowski for my work as a journalist in Poland in the late 1980s. I saw President Walesa again in February 2014 at the American Institute of Polish Culture’s International Polonaise Ball in Miami Beach. I looked at him. He saw me, smiled, and gave me a kiss. I get kissed only by Polish Presidents. The American Presidents I have covered have no idea who I am.

We did the interview, Lech speaking Polish and recorded on one channel, and an ABC translator who simultaneously rendered his words into English, providing audio on the other channel. That allowed editing for American audiences with Polish low in the background and English as the primary sound. When it was over, my crew insisted that I take a photo with Lech. Apparently, this was what all the foreigners did, so I agreed. When we stood together, he tickled me, which is why I’m giggling in that picture.

Alma Kadragic earned a Ph.D at City University, New York, then joined ABC News as a writer, later becoming a producer and bureau chief. From 1990-2003 she was in Poland with ABC and ran her own public relations firm. She taught journalism and PR in the UAE’s, and developed two master’s programs in 2005-2013. In 2013 Dr. Kadragic relocated to Miami and opened her company.

I remained in Poland as ABC bureau chief until the beginning of 1990. Along the way we covered the developing revolutions 71

Good News 2013-2014

Let Your Story Be Heard The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is seeking to increase awareness in the Polish-American community in the United States, primarily to Poles who were persecuted by the Nazis and their allies. The Museum is interested in their experiences and in telling their stories, and we hope to encourage Polish Catholic survivors and their families to donate artifacts, documents, oral histories, films and photographs. All of these can only enhance the Museum’s collection, help teach the lessons of the Holocaust and stand as hard evidence of what happened for ages to come.

occupied countries. We want to document the persecutions - of other racial “enemies” of the Third Reich, of political and religious enemies, of homosexuals, of the mentally and physically disabled, and of those who were simply opposed to the Nazi ideology and methods. We want to document eyewitness accounts of deportations, confiscations, lootings and/or illegal sales of property of all people targeted by the Nazis. We seek first person accounts about how these individuals and groups were presented in newspapers, magazines, journals, newsreels, movies, the kinds of posters in public spaces, and what radios were broadcasting.

The Department of Oral History at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is conducting video and audio interviews of nonJewish survivors of Nazi persecution, as well as witnesses to it, who currently live in the United States and Canada, but who once lived in Nazi

Will you help us? If you have a story to tell or know somebody who does, please contact Ina Navazelskis, Program Coordinator, at

Did you know… On April 27, 2014, US Polish Ambassador Ryszard Schnepf’s mother and grandmother were honored for their extreme acts of bravery in saving the lives of several Polish Jews in Warsaw during WWII. Mrs. Alicja Szczepaniak Schnepf and her late mother, Natalia Szczepanik, risked their own lives (and that of younger sister, Barbara) to shelter families in their oneMrs. Alicja bedroom apartment. During those dark days, they often Szczepaniak Schnepf had to distract the Nazis from noticing how many people were actually living in the tiny apartment or from hearing noises coming from the apartment’s only closet. They managed to keep the neighbors from learning what they were doing, and stayed calm and focused under the constant threats to all Poles of immediate death if caught harboring Jews. Adas Israel Congregation in Washington DC recognized their heroism at its annual Garden of Remembrance event, and both women were lauded as Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem - Mrs. Szczepanik on January 1, 1981 and Mrs. Schnepf on November 13, 1991.

Good News 2013-2014


You live but for a while and time is a transparent pearl filled with breath. Halina Poswiatowska

The Year of Jan Karski


he Polish Parliament proclaimed 2014 as the Year of Jan Karski in September 2013, and the US soon followed their lead. On April 1st, the United States Senate unanimously passed S. Res. 371 honoring “the legacy and accomplishments of Jan Karski on the centennial of his birth.” The Honorable Pat Quinn, Governor of Illinois, proclaimed April 24, 2014 “Jan Karski Day” in Illinois, for Karski’s “tremendous efforts to oppose the Nazi occupation of Poland and to stop the Holocaust.” The Canadian House of Commons unanimously adopted a motion recognizing Jan Karski as a “Hero of Humanity risking his life to reveal the truth of the Holocaust.” It’s a source of pride for all Poles and people of Polish identification around the globe to see Jan Karski join the pantheon of great Poles who are also global heroes. Karski, who has been called “Humanity’s Hero” and “One Man who Tried to Stop the Holocaust,” earned his place in this company for his courageous mission on behalf of the Polish Underground during World War II. The hard work of many organizations and individuals who cherish the values of courage, integrity and compassion for the oppressed has helped give him his rightful place in history.

Natalia & Jan Mrozek celebrating the centennial of Jan Karski’s birth on April 24, 2014

Georgetown University followed by a dramatic reading of Remember This: Walking with Karski, featuring Oscar-nominated actor David Strathairn as Karski. The Foundation hosted a reception following Strathairn’s remarkable performance. In September 2014, the focus of attention turned to Chicago where The World Knew: Jan Karski’s Mission for Humanity, an exhibition created by the Polish History Museum in cooperation with the Jan Karski Educational Foundation, opened for a four-month run at the Illinois Holocaust Museum. On September 19th, a conference devoted to Karski, Memory and Responsibility, was held at Loyola University Chicago.

Leading the charge in America is the Jan Karski Educational Foundation (JKEF). The Foundation grew out of the successful Jan Karski US Centennial Campaign, which placed Karski’s name in nomination for a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom in December 2011, which was bestowed by President Barack Obama on May 29, 2012. The year 2013 brought the official launch of sister foundations in the US and Poland and the publication of the new US edition of Karski’s 1944 classic, Story of a Secret State, by Georgetown University Press.

The centennial year was marked by a series of new publications, whether by or about Karski. In January, a new centennial edition of Karski’s magnum opus The Great Powers and Poland: from Versailles to Yalta was published by Rowman & Littlefield. A new edition of the Thomas Wood and Stanisław M. Jankowski’s biography Karski: How One Man Tried to Stop the Holocaust was released in the summer. In Poland, thanks to the efforts of the JKEF’s Polish partners, Fundacja Edukacyjna Jana Karskiego (FEJK) and the Polish History Museum (PHM) in Warsaw, Tajne Państwo, the Polish edition of Story of a Secret State, was published by ZNAK. Wydawnictwo Poznańskie published Wielkie mocarstwa wobec Polski 19191945. Od Wersalu do Jałty, the Polish edition of The Great Powers and Poland. Also, the National Bank of Poland issued a series of commemorative coins devoted to Jan Karski, and the Polish Postal Services issued a commemorative stamp.

The year 2014 has been a year-long celebration of Karski. The Embassy of the Republic of Poland in the United States, under the leadership of His Excellency Ryszard Schnepf, together with the Jan Karski Educational Foundation, hosted a celebratory reception at the Embassy to celebrate Karski on the eve of the anniversary of his birth, April 23rd. At that time, the Amicus Poloniae honor was presented to Dr. Richard Brown, head of Georgetown University Press, and six collaborators for their work on the new edition Story of a Secret State. Thomas Sneeringer, who worked tirelessly on behalf of Poland for the US Congress back when Poland regained its independence, and who on behalf of the JKEF, was also presented this award.

“We’re optimistic that these and many other ongoing efforts will foster a better knowledge not only of Karski but of Poland’s remarkable and too-little-known efforts during World War II,” said Foundation President Wanda Urbanska.

On April 24th, a panel discussion on the “Responsibility to Protect” doctrine, inspired by Karski’s work, was held at

To learn more about Jan Karski (1914-2000), visit


Good News 2013-2014

Join Lady Blanka Rosenstiel in




With The Fund for American Studies

This scholarship fund, created by Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, provides funding for college students from Poland to attend the American Institute on Political and Economic Systems (AIPES) in Prague, Czech Republic each summer. The premier leadership program, sponsored by The Fund for American Studies, is designed to explore the political, economic and cultural issues of the world as it grows under democratic principles. AIPES embodies diversity and culture as its cornerstone to educating future leaders. Make a contribution today, and provide a student from Poland with an unparalleled educational experience. Contact Ed Turner at 202-986-0384 or to contribute to the Lady Blanka Rosenstiel Scholarship Fund today! Visit to learn about all of the programs sponsored by The Fund for American Studies.

Polish Students Sponsored at AIPES By Matthew Kwasiborski


ady Blanka Rosenstiel has been sponsoring Polish students going to the American Institute on Political and Economic Systems (AIPES) since 1999. Twenty-five percent of the Polish students (36 of 120) who have benefited from this great academic and cultural experience have received scholarship support from this generous sponsorship.

of the Prague Leadership Institute; Mr. Steven Kashkent, Charge d’affaires of the Embassy of the United States; Mr. Jakub Kulhanek, Deputy Defense Minister of the Czech Republic; and Ms. Eliska Coolidge of Coolidge Consulting. The Fund for American Studies hosted 30 alumni at the conclusion of the AIPES 2014 Institute. The alumni gathered in Prague to celebrate the founding of TFAS International exactly twenty-one years ago, and also joined the weekend class for educational and networking opportunities. Our Polish participants also had a great opportunity (along with their colleagues) to present their cultural heritage to the rest of the group. Each year AIPES hosts a cultural presentations evening, so that the students are able to share their country’s history and culture.

AIPES was launched in 1993 by The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) in partnership with Charles University. The program now takes place each summer in Prague, Czech Republic. It was the first international program organized by TFAS, which continues to host other programs around the world for students in the Middle East, Asia, and Latin America. This summer, AIPES 2014 welcomed 86 students from 37 countries to Prague for the 22nd annual Institute, which ran from July 12th to August 4th. We were pleased to have five outstanding Polish students - Lukasz Dabros, Antoni Napieralski, Klaudia Szkaluba, Katarzyna Walusiak, and Liwiusz Wojciechowski - join us this summer for the Institute. While attending AIPES, these five students and the rest of the AIPES class studied conflict management, the political economy of liberty, and political philosophy. We have four outstanding faculty members from Georgetown University, the California State University/San Marcos, and King’s College London.

On August 4th, the AIPES 2014 students attended a formal graduation ceremony at the beautiful 14th century Carolinum, a great symbol of Charles University. We were honored to have the Honorable Gjorge Ivanov, President of the Republic of Macedonia, as our keynote commencement speaker and recipient of the AIPES Freedom Award. As new graduates of AIPES, our five Polish students now join the ranks of nearly 14,000 alumni of The Fund for American Studies, representing more than 100 nations around the world. The Fund for American Studies wishes to thank the American Institute of Polish Culture, especially Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, for their continued support of Polish students attending AIPES. We are proud of all of our Polish alumni, and we hope that the future leaders of Poland continue to attend AIPES thanks to the generosity of our longtime supporters.

In addition to the challenging curriculum, students attended several guest lectures given by prominent regional figures. The series included presentations given by Dr. Petr Just, pro-rector of Metropolitan University Prague; Dr. Pavol Demes, former Slovak Foreign Minister; Mr. Pepper DeCallier, President

There are no miracles. There is only what one does oneself. Tamara de Lempicka

Did you know… NURTURE the WORLD was founded in 2012 by Monika Jablonska, a Polish attorney, after her involvement with the World Food Program to end worldwide hunger. That work inspired her to find ways to raise funds to use in nurturing hungry children through the sales of sustainable products. To launch her vision she created a tote bag stamped with "Share the Love with Children," and since then she and her team have added other wearable products like jewelry and tee shirts to spread the word and to vastly improve lives, communities and the environment. NURTURE is active in Poland, Brazil and the US in supporting extremely low-income communities to feed the children. Ms. Jablonska says it best. "I believe that by sharing the love with others and giving back you are not only benefitting less fortunate people of this world, but you are also bringing happiness, love and peace to your own life" You can make a difference by visiting NURTURE at and


Good News 2013-2014

“We Ask That You Listen Well”


Good News 2013-2014

S cholarship

Kraków experienced many riots during the Martial Law. Alina Mazur remembers “my husband said that there were Solidarność activists on our block [the union was suspended but went underground to conduct many anti-Communist activities] and they [the military] blocked the street to catch them. At that time we were coming back from church.” The military used tanks and ZOMO2 for such activities. Alina’s daughter, Anna, who was very young at the time, was home by herself and remembers it vividly. “Suddenly tanks rolled onto our street, and they released so much tear gas that I was standing on the balcony and my eyes watered up and I was very scared because there was so much gas and my parents weren’t home.” Upon her return, Alina remembers, “I came back home, we didn’t expect anything like that to happen, we just went to church and the poor kid’s home by herself, her chin moving up and down because of fear, there were tanks outside, and ZOMO in their helmets beating people in the street.” Fear was widespread among the population since this was not an isolated incident, but by that time a common occurrence. The morale of the population was sinking and the state of events seemed more like anarchy rather than a military order.


he indomitable presence of Pope John Paul II, as well as the adamantine spirit of Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko and Cardinal Wyszyński, provided moral pillars in the struggle against communism. Local clergy was incredibly important as well. The Church provided a safe haven where people could gather and be comforted.






By Marcin Marszałek A provocation took place outside the Lord’s Arc church. “My husband went to Fatima worship [May 13th]” remembers Alina, “and there were agitators there and they started a riot. People came out of the church and other people were throwing rocks and firecrackers. One firecracker landed next to his leg and he barely ran away in time before it exploded.” During that time, militia arrived at night to take people from their homes. Przemek Maziarz remembers his fear of being taken. “We were scared. I was terribly afraid that they would come and take me too and make me fight. They would come at 2 or 3 a.m.. They were taking reservists, but I also found out they took people who had not been in the military for years or never went through basic training, and I never knew what kind of people.” At that time, the regime increased its attempts to infiltrate the church. Party members recorded masses long before Martial Law but the party stepped up its efforts to limit priests’ voices. The clergy took a very welcoming stance to the party spies and their reports. “Priests often fished out these people but did not throw them out of the church, but welcomed them. It happened dozens of times and the priest would say: ‘Oh, I see we have a friend from the militia. We ask that you listen well’” In a sense, it was a sort of self-induced martyrdom; the priest seeing such a person could tone down their homilies but many did not. One of the priests from Przemek’s parish was in trouble several times. “Fr. Sylvester was summoned to the police station numerous times and was interrogated. There was always something; supposedly he was working to antagonize against the people’s rule.” Other priests were not so lucky. A priest that Alina knew, Jancarz, lived a different story. He was in Myślowice and held masses for the fatherland every week on Thursdays [as inspired by Bl. Jerzy Popiełuszko]. As Alina recalls: “Jancarz died of supposed heart troubles at a young age and he was a very well-liked priest. There were young priests who died for no apparent reasons. That’s how Popiełuszko died.” 1 Excerpted from an Oral History essay entitled, Solidarity, the Catholic Church and Martial Law in People’s Republic of Poland: Examination of What Oral Testimonies Reveal About the Role of the Church in Everyday Life by Marcin Marszalek, September 2013 2 Zmotoryzowane Oddziały Milicji Obywatelskiej (ZOMO) were paramilitary-police formations during the Communist Era in Poland. (Wikipedia)


A Fourteen Minute Miracle By Stephanie Ichniowski

Recipient S cholarship Irsay

The assembled crowd began spontaneously singing a native religious hymn in what was a supposedly and officially an atheistic country, declaring their kinship with the Pope and interrupting the sermon with a sustained fourteen-minute ovation. This unyielding show of support by the people of Poland presented in front of the repressive Communist regime, demonstrated to the world that the Poles were ready for change. While the government attempted to limit the impact of the event, their attempts to control the message was impossible, given that one-third of the total Polish population saw and heard John Paul II live during his visit to their homeland. In addition and perhaps most importantly, an unemployed electrician from the Gdansk shipyards, Lech Walesa, was an attendee during the service in Victory Square, and began to realize the potential power of sustained mass opposition to oppressive communist rule.

Historians believe that the Pope’s nine days in Poland in 1979 served as the inspiration for the Solidarity Trade Union movement that eventually led to a regime change in Poland in 1989 and ultimately the fall of communism throughout Europe. Walesa recalled in a later interview that when the Polish “felt so totally discouraged and so helpless, there came John Paul II… who awoke the people…organized the people.” Fourteen miraculous minutes that rallied an oppressed nation and transformed the world.


In June 1979, John Paul II undertook a pilgrimage to his home country of Poland. Communist leaders, understanding that ninety percent of Poles were affiliated with the Catholic Church and fearing an end to their oppressive rule, attempted to prevent the visit from the outset. The Polish government quickly recognized, however, that world pressure would make it virtually impossible to prevent the first Polish Pope from returning to his homeland. In what has become known as the Polish Novena (or nine day visit), the Pope celebrated mass at Victory Square in Warsaw before over one million people, delivering an uplifting homily that resonated with those present. While John Paul II’s religious centric message was not unexpected (“Christ cannot be kept out of the history of man in any part of the globe.”), his statement to those assembled, “Be not afraid!” led to an unprecedented reaction of the citizens of communist Poland.



ecently, the Roman Catholic Church declared that Pope John Paul II would be recognized as a saint. In general, as part of the canonization process, two miracles attributed to the candidate’s intercession must be confirmed before sainthood is established. While two medical recoveries that defied scientific explanation were accepted by the Church as part of the qualification process, a third fourteen minute “miracle” prompted by John Paul’s action, led to a realignment of the world’s political and social structure and initiated a free and open society within Poland.

Pope John Paul II Pilgrimage to Poland in 1979


Good News 2013-2014

Spitfire Liberator


new film with premiers scheduled in September and October 2014 in select North American cities (which may include Miami), Spitfire Liberator: The Alex Herbst Story is a documentary about a courageous fighter pilot who fought in the legendary RAF 303 Squadron during the Battle of Britain.

As a young man, Witold Aleksander Herbst’s story may not be unique to citizens of Poland during WWII. But with a history of escaping Nazi attacks in his homeland, secretly making his way to England, joining the elite 303, flying 141 missions as an escort/protector of B17 bombers over Germany and defending against air strikes during the Normandy Invasion certainly makes his story fascinating. That Captain Herbst lost his entire family, was shot down 3 times and thought deceased, then forgotten in time, and yet recently celebrated his 95th birthday only makes his life story more captivating. After WWII, Mr. Herbst emigrated to the US and currently resides in the Seattle, Washington area. He has been awarded many medals for valor and heroism, including the Cavalier Cross of the Order Polonia Restituta from the President of Poland. His autobiography, Under British Sky (1997) is available in Polish. Today he is the oldest Polish pilot from WWII still living. Spitfire Liberator: The Alex Herbst Story tells the story of one man’s life long love of flying that has never abated. Mr. Herbst takes the viewer on a journey of his past through Poland, Romania, Turkey, France, England to present day in the US, which, very fittingly, includes the aviation industry. The film was written, produced and directed by Slawomir Ciok. For more information, access

The Autumn Man by Albert Slugocki (published June 5, 2013) A South Florida friend of AIPC has written a compelling autobiography of survival, adventure, valor, sorrow, redemption and peace. Albert Slugocki's story is right out of a movie and makes for a fascinating read. Starting from his early days in Poland during WWII to joining the French Foreign Legion with combat in Indochine and then as a political refugee in the US who fought in Korea; from the US Army Special Forces as a Green Beret in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos to the Funeral Guard of Honor corps for assassinated JFK and the White House; from serving as a US Deputy Marshall in the special action squad to the jungles of the Amazon and captaining a cargo service between Brazil Good News 2013-2014


and Peru; to founding a humanitarian organization supplying medical supplies and care to over 20,000 people, Mr. Slugocki has lived a truly extraordinary life. Visit The Autumn Man and Mr. Slugocki at www.

The Norblin Odyssey By Lynne Schaefer



lonaise Ball held on February 2, 2013 in Miami celtween Poland and India. In researching the shared history of both countries for unique stories that illustrate the

in both countries--Norblin. A family name, though originally during the mid-1700’s and then again to the Indian art world in the late 1900’s.

Jean-Pierre Norblin de La Gourdaine was born in France in tablishing a name for himself as a painter of note. He stud-

Jan Piotr Norblin Self Portrait

but most especially in his homeland, Poland. His skill in portraitures was widely recognized. His ability to capture the beauty, essence and character of his subject was lauded and

by Prince Adam Kazimierz Czartoryski. He fell in love with his adopted country and achieved great success there, becoming known as Jan Piotr Norblin, one of the most important painters of the Polish Enlightenment period.

and other notables. Norblin also created hundreds of contemporary art pieces for posters and book covers, and was a master of theatrical scenery painted in the stunning and stylized art deco form that was a hallmark of the visual arts during the 1940’s. However, during the early days of WWII -

Norblin worked for many of the Polish noble families as a cluding the Radziwills in Nieborow and King Stanislaw August Poniatowski’s palace. In 1790 he established an art school many of the historical changes of the last years of the PolishLithuanian Commonwealth. His commissioned portraits for the wealthy and elite enabled him to create a spectrum of

of Poland was his hurried on-scene sketches that immortalized most of the major events as they unfolded, and marked him as a painter-chronicler of history. Events such as the Warsaw Uprising of 1794, the hanging of Targowica traitors Massacre of Praga all ensured Norblin a solid place in Poland’s cultural world. Then in India... Stefan Norblin de la Gourdaine, or Stefan Norblin as he was

Stefan Norblin Palace Mural


Good News 2013-2014

became hugely successful throughout India. Norblin’s Maharajah of Jodphur’s palace, Umaid Bhawan. Several of and powerful works, and earned Norblin a place in India’s vast history of celebrated painters. dia, Stefan Norblin, his wife and infant son moved to San traits of famous and wealthy people, many of Polish birth. Works include a cover of Time magazine and a life-sized

Poster of Zakopane by Stefan Norblin

Poster of Krakow by Stefan Norblin

the Pentagon.

enjoy success with the Magnolia Jazz Band. He also cut

Now in America...

his childhood guitar hero, Franny Beecher of the Comets,

Andrew Norblin, the son who came to the U.S. with his par-

Rockabilly Hall of Fame. Norblin does not consider himself a rockabilly musician and of course he’s not Canadian, but he is thrilled that it all led to becoming close friends with

1950’s, he fell instantly in love with a new American music style - rock & roll - and felt a kinship with one of the early bands - Bill Haley and the Comets. Norblin was so inspired by the guitarist’s playing that he bought a guitar, taught himself how to play and put himself through college for economics by playing six nights a week in a jazz combo. He taught economics and music over the next few decades, playing music.

As for Andrew Norblin’s famous parents, he began to donate several of his father’s pieces to the Polish Arts and hibit, Art Beyond Time: Stefan Norblin, in Poland in 2012. A documentary, Chitraanjali: Stefan Norblin in India, was filmed, released and played to the sold out crowds throughout Europe and Southeast Asia. His mothers

In the late 1980’s Norblin made the decision to commit -

who was considered the Marlene Dietrich and Marilyn Monroe of her day, made many movies, and these are throughout the world by a new audience eager for early

missing urns containing their ashes. Thought to have been were discovered in a pauper’s crypt in Colma, a very small town in the San Francisco Bay area, in early 2013. They were taken to Warsaw to be interred with a formal Polish state funeral and sevuary much to the pride and joy of Andrew Norblin. They

Maharajah of Jodphur portrait by Stefan Norblin

Good News 2013-2014

Andrew Norblin


John Paul II: I was Looking for You By Jason Chohonis Germany, and following the war he worked to better the lives of thousands in Poland during the period of Soviet occupation. In 1978, Karol was elected to the Papacy by the College of Cardinals, where he would serve until his death on April 2, 2005. He also took the name John Paul II in honor of his immediate late predecessor (John Paul I who only served for 33 days) and also of the late Pope Paul VI. The first non-Italian Pope since the 16th century, Pope John Paul II played a pivotal role in the liberation of Poland from the communist rule with his first pilgrimage to the country in 1979. The documentary covers this trip in detail and the abundance of commentary makes it clear that John Paul II was instrumental in the rise of the 1980 Solidarity movement in Poland. One historian said, “When Pope John Paul II kissed the ground at the Warsaw airport he began the process by which communism in Poland – and ultimately elsewhere in Europe – would come to an end.”

St. John Paul II


n May 6, 2014, the Miami-Florida European Union Center of Excellence (MEUCE) collaborated with the American Institute for Polish Culture and the Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Poland to present a film showcasing one of Europe’s revered sons. As part of FIU’s European Film Festival, John Paul II: I was Looking for You explores the life of the Pope through historical data, personal stories and the Pope’s own words. Students and faculty in attendance were able to learn a great deal about the influential Pope, who was canonized as a Saint on April 27, 2014 in Vatican City. Filmed entirely in Polish with English subtitles, the documentary represents the largest production of its kind in Poland’s film history, and features over 90 days of shooting in 13 different countries. Interviewees include some of the most esteemed religious leaders in the world, such as the 14th Dalai Lama and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, Bartholomew I. John Paul II was born Karol Józef Wojtyła on May 18, 1920 in Wadowice near Krakow, Poland, a tumultuous time for a nation sandwiched between two great European military powers - Russia and Prussia. Karol become a priest during World War II when Poland was occupied by Nazi

Pope John Paul II’s contributions were not limited to the field of politics. In addition to the role he played in the demise of communism, as a pilgrim he visited 129 counties and canonized 483 Saints, more than any of his predecessors of the previous 500 years combined. His efforts to create an active dialogue between those of the Catholic faith and other Christians, Jews, and Muslims led to camaraderie and communication between often antagonistic religious systems. It is assured that many of the citizens of Poland, as well as multitudes around the globe, remember Pope John Paul II with sublime reverence. The FIU audience was captivated by this well-filmed documentary which took an objective and interesting viewpoint of the Pope so dear to so many people regardless of their religious affiliation. The story and legacy of this charismatic Pope left the audience in a reflective mood, moved by his incredible impact on the world, and his wisdom, grace and larger then life persona.

Mrs. Danuta Kyparisis, Ms. Ewa Granatowska, Ms. Guadalupe Cruz, Mrs. Christine Caly-Sanchez, Mr. Jason Chohonis, Mrs. Beata Paszyc


Good News 2013-2014

Christmas Party “Christmas is not just a time for festivity and merry making. It is more than that. It is a time for the contemplation of eternal things. The Christmas spirit is a spirit of

giving and forgiving.”

J. C. Penney (“Christmas Thoughts”) Mr. John Wayne, Jr., Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mr. Mike Skronski


and new. Children sat in rapt attention when our guest pianist, 9 year old Miss Tu-Anh Nguyen from Boca Raton, played Chopin and a Polish Christmas song, ”Lulajze Jezuniu”, which was Chopin’s favorite. Then they did what children do the world over - found the sweets and goodies and played together. The Chopin Foundation’s Barbara Muze played a medley of Polish Christmas songs which inspired many guests to sing their old favorites! Lady Blanka thanked everyone for another successful year and wished all a healthy and joyful New Year. It was a perfect evening of merry-making and good wishes.

his is exactly why we meet with members and friends of AIPC and the Chopin Foundation during the holidays every year to celebrate Christmas. For all of us, the times spent with our extended family are made of happy smiles, renewed friendships and making plans. In celebrating the season, we are also honoring the spirit of all the Christmases that came before us and the traditions of giving and forgiving that have helped us move forward to successful futures. On December 28, 2013 guests gathered in our offices to taste delicious Polish goodies and catch up with friends old

Ms. Malgorzata Chibowska, Mrs. Barbara Cooper, Ms. Janelle Cooper, Mr. Mikolaj Spenceley-Prada, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Mrs. Magdalena Mangra, Mr. Pawel Mikulec, Ms. Monica Mangra

I stopped believing in Santa Claus when I was six. Mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph. Shirley Temple Good News 2013-2014


Baron Jason Psaltides, Dr. Pat Riley, Mr. John Sullivan

Mr. Bernard Kmita, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel

Mrs. Barbara Muze, Ms. Lynne Schaefer

Ms. Iga Henderson, Ms. Alicja Schoonover, Ms. Magdalena Sambor, Mrs. Inga Luksza Senis

Mr. Morton “Buddy” Cohen, Mrs. Diane Cohen, Mrs. Jadwiga Gewert, Mr. S. Peter Capua

Mrs. Maria Blacha, Mr. Wojciech Plater

Miss Tu-Anh Nguyen

Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Lady Blanka Rosenstiel

Mr. Mark Greenberg

Alicja, Zosia, Nel, Stasiu


Good News 2013-2014

What Being Polish Means to Me By Cassidee Collier


I also have very fond memories of the summer breaks from school. Each Catholic Church in the area (at one point, there were about ten) would hold its own picnic (we also referred to it as a “block party”). These were two or three day festivals that brought together the town for Polish food, Polka music, and Bingo games in the church hall. It was always a highlight of the summer; it was one of the things that united our small town the most.

Good News 2013-2014


When I was in middle school, I received word that a new family member would be joining our clan. It turned out that my cousin, Tom, who always had a fascination with the Polish language and culture, had recently returned from a trip abroad where he a met a Polish girl named Dorota. Before long, he asked for her hand in marriage and they began a full-scale Polish wedding in my hometown. The event was nothing like I had ever witnessed. Tom and Dorota were decked in traditional Polish dress, everyone said Polish prayers, and guests hit the dance


That education deepened as I continued to grow. I was raised in a small coal mining town in Pennsylvania, where my 6,000 fellow residents represented a melting pot of Polish culture. In school, my classmates weren’t Smiths, Millers, Andersons, or Johnsons. Instead, they were Zielinskis, Kaczmareks, Stankiewiczs, and Kwiatkowskis. In fact, it wasn’t until I went to college that I realized not every American had tongue-twister last names; that was something that was unique to the Polish heritage that surrounded my upbringing.

S cholarship



y first food memories aren’t of McDonald’s, Happy Meals or Domino’s pizza. Instead, they’re of my grandmother’s Polish cooking. When I was young, I remember gathering around the dinner table as my gram’s heaps of freshly made pierogis, cabbage, and sauerkraut were served to my siblings and me. We would feast on it for days as we got our first taste (literally and figuratively) of Polish culture.


floor while a Polka band played music into the wee hours of the night. In the summer of 2008, my university lined me up with an internship in the Czech Republic, and immediately I made it a goal to visit Poland while I was abroad. About eight weeks into the summer, it happened. I hopped on a night train in Prague and arrived bright and early in Krakow the following morning. It was exciting to think that after all of the conversations I had with Tom and Dorota about Poland, I was experiencing the country first-hand. I wandered through the Wieliczka Salt Mine and was taken aback by the intricacy of each design. I peoplewatched in Main Square as I enjoyed my lunch at an outdoor terrace, and I strolled outside Wawel Castle. The trip was one I’ll never forget, and upon arriving home I met with Tom and Dorota and told them about my travels. My next journey took me to Nicaragua, where I have been serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer for the past two years. One of the most important cultural aspects I value most about Nicaragua is the amount of pride people take in their roots. They are tight-knit and deeply patriotic; if you ask them, they are not Latino or Central American as much as they are “Cien por ciento Nicaragüense” (“One hundred percent Nicaraguan”). Each student in school knows the national anthem, the national bird, the national tree, the history of the country, and the words to Ruben Dario’s poems. It is refreshing to see they are so proud of what being Nicaraguan means. This lesson I am learning in the Peace Corps is one that will affect me throughout my life. My Polish heritage is special to me, and I look forward to raising my future children with the same sense of pride of their roots. I want them to understand the food, the culture, and the traditions that characterized the lives of their ancestors. And of course, maybe they too can enjoy pierogis before they eat hamburgers.

A Springtime Social


he annual Spring / Easter party hosted by AIPC and the Chopin Foundation was celebrated in our offices on Tuesday, April 22, 2014. Over 75 members and friends attended, including some new faces, and, as always, giddy children hoping to find sweet treats from the Easter bunny. Guests enjoyed platters of hors d’oeuvres, dainty sandwiches, chocolate eggs and other goodies along with refreshing beverages and wine.

held in Miami February 20 – March 1, 2015. She was also very pleased to announce the long awaited renovations of our North Bay Village offices. After 35 years in the same building, we are getting a complete face lift – floor to ceiling – courtesy of the new building owners. Lady Blanka promised that the next office party would be in celebration of our newly refurbished spaces and the continued success of APIC and Chopin.

Lady Blanka welcomed all to the party and announced the exciting upcoming year of scheduled lectures and events, including the National Chopin Piano Competition to be

The festivities concluded with the world-renowned pianist and Chopin Foundation board member, Augustin Anievas, delighting party guests with a superb piano performance.

Ms. Carmen Cuenca, Mrs. Lisa Seite, Mr. Peter Seite, Mrs. Jadwiga Gewert

Mr. Augustin Anievas, Mrs. Carol Anievas

Dr. Irena Siemiginowski, Ms. Lucy Dolinski, Ms. Eva Kwasnik

Mrs. Beata Paszyc, Mrs. Barbara Cooper, Mrs. Inga Luksza Senis, Miss Nel Velez-Paszyc, Ms. Janelle Cooper, Mrs. Magdalena Mangra

Lady Blanka Rosenstiel, Ms. Eva Kordos

Peace is not just the absence of war. Like a cathedral, peace must be constructed patiently and with unshakable faith.

Pope John Paul II


Good News 2013-2014

Mr. Marek Raczkowski, Mrs. Maria Raczkowski

Mrs. Carol Sadowski, Mr. John Sullivan

Ms. Lynne Schaefer

Mr. Wojciech Minicz, Ms. Agnieszka Glowacka

Kevin Montero Monal, Mr. Yohann Montero, Mrs. Joanna Wiela

Mrs. Ela Piotrovsky, Mr. Ralph Piotrovsky

Did you know… One hundred and seventy five years ago, one of the world’s most highly prized timepiece companies was created in Switzerland by two Poles - Antoni Patek and Franciszek Czapek. The five-year partnership produced some of the finest pocket watches made in the early 1840’s with exquisite workmanship, metals and precious gems of the highest quality available, and a design aesthetic that had few competitors. In 1845 Czapek left the firm and an up and coming young French watchmaker and inventor, Adrien Philippe, joined Patek.

The Supercomplicator (dubbed the “Holy Grail of Watches”) made for wealthy banker, Henry Graves in 1933, will be auctioned by Sotheby’s in November 2014, with a presale estimate of $17,000,000.

It wasn’t long before their beautiful pieces caught the attention of European royalty and the wealthy, and won awards for production excellence and futuristic design. In addition they became known for making all the components themselves, ensuring that every single aspect of each creation met their exacting standards of utility and beauty.

named appropriately “The Supercomplication,” making it the most expensive timepiece ever sold. A 1943 chronograph wristwatch with a moonphase display and perpetual calendar sold through Christie’s Geneva for $5,500,000 in 2010, and in 2013 an online auction of a 1953 chronograph watch garnered $611,000.

Owning a Patek-Philippe remains the epitome of prestige and luxury for high society and others who value timeless classicism with extraordinary design and engineering. During the last fifteen years, these watches have broken all records at auctions. In 1999, Sotheby’s US received $11,000,000 for a watch that performs 24 functions,

Patek, Czapek, and Philippe created an innovative company during an exciting period of great change and opportunity - the Industrial Revolution - and now, almost two centuries later, their craftsmanship, sublime taste and elegance, and savvy business ethics continue to be recognized with the greatest respect and devotion worldwide.

Good News 2013-2014


A Granddaughter’s Wish By Julia Banasikowski

World War II began suddenly with the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939. On September 19th, just two days after the Russians invaded Poland from the east, the beloved Polish city of Wilno was seized by the Soviet Union and would never again be returned to Poland. My grandfather, Edmund Banasikowski, fought for the Home Army during this time. In 1944, he took part in the Battle of Wilno. He wrote a book about his war experiences, Na Zew Ziemi Wileńskiej. For his military accomplishments, he received medals such as Virtuti Militari, the Cross of Merit, and the Cross of Valor.

Recipient S cholarship Irsay

In his memoir, my grandfather wrote that Wilno represents “a significant episode of Polish history, but one that is more and more forgotten.” It is important to learn from history and to pass on what we have learned to future generations. I have learned from my grandfather and others about the importance of the city of Wilno in Polish history. I have a great appreciation for the sacrifices he and millions of Poles have made throughout history in fighting for Polish freedom and for lands that belonged to Poland, including Wilno. I intend to commemorate these actions as well as teach my children about them.


As the main governmental site of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Wilno has had a major influence on Eastern European culture, architecture, and politics since its foundation in 1323. In 1385, the Kreva Act established a union between the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland and Grand Duchy of Lithuania, a first step towards a greater alliance between the two nations. 1387 was also a significant year—King Władysław II Jagiełło christened Lithuania, marking the start of his dynasty. A period of fast development, including erections of castles, churches, universities, banks, arsenals, and hospitals, began in 1569 with the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and ended in the Third Partition of Poland in 1795. However, from 1795 until the German occupation in 1915, Wilno belonged to the Russian partition. After World War I, from 1922-1939, Wilno was officially a Polish city.



uring my brief travels through Poland, I have seen many monumental sites of this historic nation. The Old Town of Warsaw, the Kraków Marketplace, the Tatra Mountains of Zakopane, and the Shrine at Częstochowa, among others, are all familiar to me. If I were to choose a place I would want to see in Poland, I would prefer to go back in history and to focus on a city that most of the world no longer considers part of Poland. It is a city that has endured centuries of strife and war-torn suffering, taken by one European empire and then claimed by another, and which was once in Poland’s possession herself. My grandfather fought for the city of Wilno and its surrounding areas during World War II and always longed for that territory to be returned to Poland until he died in 2010. It is now my dream to go back to Wilno, which lies in current-day Lithuania, to see the place that my grandfather held dear to his heart and to see the land that should rightfully belong to Poland.

If I were to go to Wilno, I would walk to the Old Town down the medieval roads winding in and out of Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and classical buildings. From there, I would visit the Gates of Dawn, one of the most important sanctuaries dedicated to Mary for Poles. I would go to the Wilno University, Major Edmund Banasikowski established by King Stefan Batory in 1579, where Piotr Skarga was the first rector and where Adam Mickiewicz, Juliusz Słowacki, and Czesław Miłosz graduated. I would like to see historic Polish churches such as Church of the Holy Spirit and St. Anne’s Church. I would stop by the famous Rossa Cemetary where Gen. Józef Piłsudski’s heart lies next to his mother’s. At the end of the day, I would climb to the top of the Three Crosses monument on Bleak Hill, so that I could see the panorama of Wilno in the light of the sunset.

Edmund Banasikowski (right) rides through a Polish city around 1939


Good News 2013-2014



In 1975, the first National Chopin Competition started a new era for classical music in the United States. That event, for the first time, gave young American pianists a chance to go to Warsaw, Poland, to represent the US in the International Chopin Piano Competition. It was also the beginning of the Chopin Foundation of the United States, which took over the competition and has been presenting it in Miami every five years since.

Both before and after the competition, the Chopin Foundaton’s concerts will be presented as usual. This includes the Chopin For All FREE concerts in Fort Lauderdale and Coral Gables, and the Chopin Salon concerts at La Gorce Country Club, Miami Beach.

So much has changed since 1975. The National Chopin Piano Competition has established its reputation as one of the most esteemed music events in the country and the Chopin Foundation has expanded its activities to include an annual concert series, and a much appreciated scholarship program for young pianists.

At the same time our regional branches in San Francisco ( and Seattle ( carry out our mission in their respective areas with music festivals and Young Pianists Competitions. For details, please visit their websites.

Jadwiga “Viga” Gewert Executive Director

When in Florida, San Francisco or Seattle, please join us to listen to the music of Frédéric Chopin live in concert. Please visit to find out more about our programs.

In February 2015, the Foundation will present the Ninth National Chopin Piano Competition, and for ten days the Competition will again transform Miami into the “Chopin music mecca” for the whole country.

2014 - 2015 SEASON CALENDAR Join us in South Florida for an exciting new season filled with great events and wonderful artists!

Chopin for All FREE Concerts

Presented by Southern Wine & Spirits of America Saturdays at 3 pm at Broward County Main Library, 100 S. Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale Sundays at 3 pm at Granada Presbyterian Church, 950 University Drive, Coral Gables October 11 & 12 Ivan Moshchuk, a talented young American pianist November 8 & 9 Melos Buza emerging young international exchange pianist from Kosovo April 25 & 26 A Winner of the 2015 National Chopin Piano Competition May 16 &17 A Winner of the 2015 National Chopin Piano Competition June 20 & 21 A Winner of the 2015 National Chopin Piano Competition

Chopin Salon Concerts

Ivan Moshchuk

Melos Buza

Intimate concerts followed by wine reception and post-concert dinner. La Gorce Country Club • 5685 Alton Road • Miami Beach

Salon Concerts and Receptions are FREE for Members. Sumptuous dinners only $55. Non-Members also welcome! Please call for membership & ticket info: (305) 868-0624

November 16 April 12

Margarita Shevchenko, acclaimed Russian Pianist and 2015 Chopin Piano Competition Juror A Winner of the 2015 National Chopin Piano Competition

Contact: • 305-868-0624 •

Good News 2013-2014


Margarita Shevchenko

Only Once Every Five Years. Only in Miami! GALA OPENING CONCERT

Featuring all Nine Jurors of the 2015 National Chopin Piano Competition Friday, February 20 - 8 pm • Admission $45/$35 (Chopin members & students free)

Agustin Anievas, USA - Chairman of the Jury

Sergei Babayan, Armenia/USA

Dean Kramer, USA

Ian Hobson, USA

Krzysztof Jablonski, Poland

Jon Nakamatsu, USA

Kevin Kenner, USA

Margarita Katarzyna Popowa-Zydron, Poland Shevchenko, Russia/USA

Ninth National

CHOPIN Piano Competition COMPETITION SESSIONS February 21 to 26 - 9:30 am to 5 pm Admission: FREE FINALS - PART 1 Saturday, February 28, 7 pm Admission $25/$15 (Chopin members & students free)

FINALS & AWARD CEREMONY Sunday, March 1, 3 pm Admission $35/$25 (Chopin members & students free)

Both days of Competition Finals Feature Concerto Performances with the Chopin Foundation Orchestra, Grzegorz Nowak, Conductor All events of the Ninth National Chopin Piano Competition take place at the Miami Dade County Auditorium 2901 W Flagler Street, Miami, Florida 33135

Contact: • 305-868-0624 • 89

Good News 2013-2014

Against All Odds By Jason Tomczak

Painting of Professor W.F. Reddaway by Philip Alexiusde László

Good News 2013-2014

Professor W. F. Reddaway, who wrote of the First Partition as “a case of lynching,” now watched as Poland was carved up in a brutal fourth partition. As a result, many of the volumes’ contributors were casualties of the war. Professor Roman Dyboski, who had spent seven years in Siberia (1914-1921), was thrown

Recipient S cholarship Irsay

Part of the process of destroying the state entailed exterminating the intelligentsia of Poland. Nazis rounded up professors and sent them to concentration camps. The Soviets replaced Polish scholars and professors with communists. The professors who wrote of the tragedies of Poland’s past for The Cambridge History of Poland found themselves swept up in the most brutal era of Poland’s history.


On September 1, 1939, Germany invaded Poland, and as Poland attempted to defend itself, the Soviet Union invaded from the east. Hitler and Stalin had signed a pact, splitting Poland between them, for the extermination of the Polish state. Stalin wanted to ensure that it could never stand in the way of Soviet power again, as it had in 1920. His secret police, the NKVD, made thousands of arrests, and crippled the army by deporting captured officers, sending many to killing sites, the most infamous being Katyn. Hitler wished to destroy Poland’s very existence, and implemented his hatred in the form of a brutal occupation, forcing Jews into ghettos and Poles from their lands, and creating institutions of mass murder throughout the entire country.



n 1936, the Cambridge University Press commissioned a two-volume work on the history of Poland to be a comprehensive and detailed account of the evolution of the Polish state. The first volume of The Cambridge History of Poland was to cover everything until Jan Sobieski’s death in 1696, and the second to the death of Józef Piłsudski in 1935. The publisher hoped to finish it within four years; however the fates of the Polish professors who worked on the book would mirror the tragic events that transpired in the decade ahead.


into a camp, one that he would not survive. Professor Dembiński, who wrote of Stanislaus Augustus’s attempts to save Poland, and Professor Estreicher, who described Austrian Galicia, died in concentration camps. Professor Siemeński died at a German concentration camp and Dr. Komornicki died shortly after being released from one. Professor Reddaway would die of natural causes.

Professor Roman Dyboski (1883 - 1945)

On June 22, 1941, Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union. As the front moved eastward, the occupation of Poland became even more terrible, with the decimation of the Polish people, the colonization of Polish lands by German settlers, and the implementation of the Final Solution. Though the war was at its height, the British publisher went ahead with the publication of The Cambridge History of Poland. The volume covering 1696 to 1935 was published in 1941. The volume contains references to WWII, identifying 1772 and 1939 as among the darkest years for Poland. The end of the book simply states that the Polish nation will derive inspiration from Piłsudski. An introductory note was inserted, explaining that the second volume would be published when “favorable times return.” It would take nine years. In those nine years, Nazi Germany would be defeated, the heroic Warsaw Uprising was crushed and Poland’s borders were redrawn. The eastern borderlands were annexed by the USSR and Poland was shifted west to the Oder. Nonetheless, the work was finally published in 1950. Professor Halecki, a chief editor, wrote an introduction mourning the loss of so many eminent scholars and valiant men. The Cambridge History of Poland was written before, during, and after the most horrific tragedy in Polish history. Its authors were deported, executed, starved, forced into hiding, or became refugees. That the work was completed in the face of such odds is a testament to the strength and resilience of the Polish nation.

Children of Terror By Inge Auerbacher and Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride


During a visit to Bozenna’s home on New York’s Long Island, they went for a walk. Two shadows formed in the dimming sunlight. Inge, being taller, stepped back slightly in order to equalize the height of the shadows. As the shadows became twins, Bozenna said, “Look Inge, can you tell the difference?” Thus the idea was born that they write a book together, comparing their lives and experiences as children growing up in a time of terror. Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride has spent the last 22 years traveling to schools, synagogues and museums to talk about her WWII experience as a child. She educates audiences with her first-person perspective of surviving the horrors of the war. She highlights the facts that during the Holocaust, eleven million innocent people were killed. Much has been written about the six million Jews, but little is known about the five million “others,” among them millions of Christian Poles. Why We Tell Our Story “We want the future generations to know more about the Holocaust and the different people it affected and consumed. The book took two and a half years to write and many sad and horrible events of the war had to be revisited. We want the book to become a class room reader along with Ann Frank. We have learned that some schools are already using it. That was our main goal in writing the book. It was painful and we constantly had to remind ourselves of our goal: to educate the students, be it a Jew or a Gentile, about hate and what it leads to.

7 5 t h An n ive rs ar y of W W I I

ozenna Urbanowicz, a practicing Roman Catholic from Poland, and Inge Auerbacher, an observant Jew from Germany, were born in 1934 a few months apart from each other. As adolescent girls, one was sent to a Nazi concentration camps, the other to a slave labor camp. They met many years later in the US when they participated in a high school seminar on the Holocaust and felt a strong similarity in their experiences and an immediate bond.

We are aware what our generation did and suffered for it, but we forget how it affected the children, the most vulnerable of humanity. We carry secret scars that no doctor can heal. No antibiotics are available to heal our memories. We want to warn our readers of the consequences of hate. Hate can be cured by large doses of love and tolerance, but it must be started early in life. It begins with parents, teachers and the people we meet

every day in our lives journey. The media must play a positive role for our youth. The students and young people must see the positive values of being good and decent. Religion should be elevated to a noble state in life. No one should be made ashamed of who he is or what he believes in. Maybe, just maybe, The book, published in 2009 by iUniverse, is available at Amazon. we can then find com, fine booksellers, and in E peace on earth as book form. There is also a 2011 it was meant to be. film produced at Rider UniverMaybe, just maybe, sity about the authors and their ordeals that can be viewed “Love Thy Neighbor” on Youtube. will really live in us as it was meant to. Maybe “Never Again” will mean just that. How wonderful that would be. That is the kind of world children should live in. “Peace” and “Shalom” to all our friends. May you be with God, always.”

In March 2014, Bozenna visited South Florida and paid a visit to AIPC. She graciously donated copies of her books to our library.


Good News 2013-2014

New Members August 2013 - September 2014 W And to all members....

e welcome our new members, appreciate their support and sincerely hope that they enjoy the events and publications of the American Institute of Polish Culture in Miami. We are always ready to embrace new ideas and projects, and continue to sponsor, organize and produce new events. But we do need all of our members’ help.

We are especially honored to have many long-time members who, throughout the years, have helped us grow the Institute into a respected resource for Polish history and culture in the U.S. and abroad. Your dedication to our mission, participation in events, and ongoing interest in our publications is greatly appreciated and we thank you all for being part of our past and part of our future.

We ask that you encourage family members, friends and colleagues to join AIPC. And students (up to 30 years of age) get a free membership. If each member brought at least five new members into the Institute, there’s no doubt we could expand our scope of works throughout America even more!

Student Members

Veronica Cieslak Valentina Kasia Demare Chris Garvin Joanna Helenowska-Gittler Katarzyna Kardas Constance Malinowski Michel Pawlowski Barbara Muze & Grenville Thomassey Joanna Wiela & Yohann Montero

Good News 2013-2014


Piotr Filochowski Marta Gorecka Michelle Jaremko Paul Kmiec Nicole Kuruszko Emily Leven


Sonya Matejko Maurice Maultz Benjamin Schultz Anna Urbaniak Kathryn Zabinski


Thanks to our Donors... ...for opening your hearts and never thinking twice about giving. Your generosity makes it possible for us to continue with our current programs and to develop new ones that enrich lives, such as the International Polonaise Ball, 40th Anniversary Chronicle, Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland at FIU, publication and special project funds, as well as the Harriet Irsay Scholarship Fund. We are truly grateful.

Thank you Donors in 2013-2014 Mr. Juan Carlos Avila Mrs. Ruby Bacardi Mr. & Mrs. Ellsworth Benson III Mr. Allen Bozek Mrs. Barbara Cooper Ms. Alice Goldstein Ms. Margareta de Gea Grezell Mr. & Mrs. Keith Gray Mr. & Mrs. Amedeo Guazzini Ms. Iga Henderson Count Rodney Hildebrant Ms. Ardith Hodes Mr. & Mrs. Zbigniew Jarosz Mr. Steven Karski Mrs. Rose Kruszewski

Mr. & Mrs. Frank Lennox Mr. & Mrs. Paul Lowenthal Count Matthew Meehan Mrs. Maria Alonso & Mr. Alex Montague Mr. Marek Montwill Mrs. Euphrosyne N. Parker Dr. Marek Pienkowski Mrs. Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk Dr. Pat Riley Ms. Alicja Schoonover Drs. Januariusz & Janina Styperek Ms. Mary Ellen Tyszka Dr. Damian Valenzuela

Other Donors Cardio-Care, Inc. Clientele East West Luxury Limousine & Concierge Florida International University Gray and Sons Jewelry Krakus Deli Latin American Invest Corp. New Century Dance Company ReMax Executive Realty Southern Audio Visual StationAmerica

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals.� Marie Skladowska Curie


Good News 2013-2014

Volunteers V

olunteers are the backbone of many non-profit organizations and events, and their dedication, skills and generous donation of their time are beyond measure and essential to the success of AIPC. We hope you will consider becoming a volunteer for us. Typical duties include proofreading our publications, preparations for the Annual International Polonaise Ball, promoting Institute activities and events, recruiting new members and students for the scholarship program, and archiving documents and other materials. Volunteers are welcome to use the Institute’s library and other educational resources.

Monika Bajcar Maria Blacha Douglas Evans Jadwiga Gewert Janusz Kozlowski Inga Lukas Senis Teresa Lowenthal Monica Mangra Yohann Montero

Barbara Muze Ela Piotrovsky Jaroslaw Rottermund Alicja Schoonover Mike Skronski Bianka Ukleja Joanna Wiela Katarzyna Zielinski

Please call if you would like to donate some of your free time. We would love to see you!

In American society today, we need to have volunteerism. I truly believe that it is the glue that will hold us together and it will be the energy that will take us into the 21st century.

Contact: (305) 864-2349 or

U.S Senator Barabara Mikulski


TShirts custom printed with your favorite portrait, Con painting, children, pet or grandchild. ay! d tac o t us Family Reunions or your own creations. st u t tod tac Promote your business! ay! n o C

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Good News 2013-2014


Delve into a Book members. from Conrad And His Contemporaries; general history; American Culture The Accomplished Senator, which might have

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." ~Saint Augustine

famous , in which you can read about the history of Poland from the inception of the state to the 19th century. Please look over the list on this page and order today to take advantage of our current

ALL OF OUR BOOKS CAN BE ORDERED AND PURCHASED ONLINE: I am interested in learning more of Poland’s history and culture. Please send the following book(s) to me at the address below (prices do not include postage): ___ The Piast Poland, by Paweł Jasienica (out of print) ___ Jagiellonian Poland, by Paweł Jasienica The Commonwealth of Both Nations, by Paweł Jasienica: ___ I. The Silver Age ___ II. Calamity of the Realm ___ III. The Tale of An Agony ___ The Polish Presence in America, by Julian Żebrowski ___ The Accomplished Senator, by Wawrzyniec Goślicki ___ True Heroes of Jamestown, by Arthur Leonard Waldo (10 in stock) ___ Madame Curie-Daughter of Poland, by Robert Woźnicki (10 in stock) ___ Conrad and His Contemporaries ___ , by Jan Dobraczyński ___ , by E.S. Urbański ___ Boxed set of 5 Volumes, by Pawel Jasienica (6 in stock)

$25.00 $25.00 $25.00 $25.00 $35.00 $35.00 $20.00 $20.00 $14.00 $12.00 $22.00 $125.00

Sub-Total _______ Discount (______) Florida residents add 7% sales tax _______ CHECK FOR TOTAL PAYMENT ENCLOSED $ _______

NAME _______________________________________________________________ ADDRESS ____________________________________________________________ CITY_______________________________STATE________________ZIP___________ More info: (305) 864-2349 fax: (305) 865-5150 or mail your order to the AIPC 1440 79th Street Causeway, Suite 117, Miami, FL 33141

Good News 2012-2013


Good News 2013-2014

The American Institute of Polish Culture Membership and Contributions Title (Please check one): Mr.

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Please designate the amount and the programs which you would like your donation to fund:

Membership includes a free copy of the Good News publication, a discount on books published by AIPC, member-only open-houses and announcements for all cultural events organized by the Institute.

 Blanka Rosenstiel Lecture Series on Poland at FIU

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Signature ________________________________________ Date____________________________ Please make checks payable to: The American Institute of Polish Culture, Inc. 1440 79th Street Causeway, Suite 117, Miami, FL 33141, Tel: 305.864.2349, www.



Congratulations on the 42nd Anniversary of the

American Institute of Polish Culture and

Best wishes for continued success from

Barbara S. Cooper

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