Angry Polish PM: “We cannot accept such words”
An embarrassed White House has admitted Barack Obama made a colossal error Tuesday while posthumously awarding the Medal of Freedom to Jan Karski, a resistance fighter against the Nazi occupation of Poland during World War II.
Obama referred to a “Polish death camp” while honoring the Polish war hero — a remark that drew immediate and fierce complaints from Poles who said Obama should have called it a “German death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland,” to distinguish the perpetrators from the location.
Outraged Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski called it a matter of “ignorance and incompetence.”
During the ceremony honoring Medal of Freedom recipients, Obama said that Karski “served as a courier for the Polish resistance during the darkest days of World War II. Before one trip across enemy lines, resistance fighters told him that Jews were being murdered on a massive scale and smuggled him into the Warsaw Ghetto and a Polish death camp to see for himself. Jan took that information to President Franklin Roosevelt, giving one of the first accounts of the Holocaust and imploring to the world to take action.”
Sikorski tweeted that the White House would apologize for “this outrageous error” and that Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk would address the matter on Wednesday. “It’s a pity that such a dignified ceremony was overshadowed by ignorance and incompetence.”
Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk’s strong statement on Barack Obama’s error can be read HERE.
We agree with Poland’s strong rebuke. From our perspective, THIS was also an embarrassment.