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Polish love for Ukrainians is also an innovation

Reader comment on item: How Ukrainian Refugees Could Inadvertently Erase the West

Submitted by Malcolm (Israel), Jul 10, 2022 at 05:20

In the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, which precipitated World War II, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany agreed to split up Poland between themselves. Eastern Poland was annexed to Lithuania in the north, Belarus in the center and to Ukraine in the south. (That included restoring to Lithuania Vilnius, its historic capital, which reborn Poland had seized after World War I.) After the war, Poland was "compensated" with territory in the west, taken from Germany. This was territory in which Poles had been living before medieval Poland was split up between Russia, Prussia and Austria in the late eighteen century and where about 10% of the population was still Polish. Its German population was expelled and replaced with Poles expelled from the areas annexed by the Soviet Union, but also with Ukrainians that the post-war Polish government moved from areas adjoining the new border with Ukraine, so as to anticipate any further Ukrainian designs on Polish territory. Given that not so remote history, the current manifestations of eager fraternity between Poles and Ukrainians are also a phenomenon worthy of notice.

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