In Poland, the history of World War II and its consequences are distorted according to the political climate, former prisoner of the Auschwitz concentration camp Bogdan Bartnikowski said in an interview with TASS.
"History is distorted depending on political views," he said, pointed to a theory that the Polish authorities have been spreading recently, which claims that the Red Army’s arrival in the country in 1945 did not mean liberation but rather just more occupation. Bartnikowski, who became a military officer after the war, noted that he had a different view of those events.
"Poland was part of the Warsaw Pact," the former Auschwitz prisoner specified. "Today, it can be said that Poland hosts US troops at its own free will. However, it also can be said that we are occupied," he pointed out.
"There was no occupation back then," Bartnikowski went on to say. "We had our own authorities that were not independent in some political matters because we had the Warsaw Pact. Similarly, today Poland must obey certain NATO decisions," he noted.
"I believe that one should make friends in one's vicinity, not overseas. We should have as good relations as possible with our neighbors to the east and west, regardless of the horrific events of the past," Bartnikowski added. "I have a warm feeling for Russians and I would like our countries to have good relations. Politics is one thing but human ties are quite another," he stressed.