Ewa Kurek, who has claimed that Jews had fun in the ghettos, was denied an honor through the intervention of the Polish government.
By: AP and World Israel News Staff
Polish officials have intervened to prevent an author accused of anti-Semitism from receiving an award at the Polish consulate in New York.
A private, US-based, Polish organization had planned to present the awards next week to three people, one of whom, Polish author, Ewa Kurek, has claimed that Jews had fun in the ghettos during the Holocaust.
Her remarks can be perceived as a form of Holocaust denial.
Never Again, an anti-racism association in Warsaw, raised alarm this week about the nature of Kurek’s writings. Polish media have reported on the controversy.
The initiative threatened to become another public relations headache for the Polish government, which has been dealing with an international backlash to a recently enacted law that outlaws blaming Poland for any crimes committed during the Holocaust. The law angered Israel and is seen by many as an attempt at historical revisionism.
Andrzej Pawluszek, an adviser to Poland’s prime minister, said Wednesday that the award was never a government initiative, but authorities decided to stop an event that would have been divisive.
One of the others set to receive an award at the event was Matthew Tyrmand, an American political activist and contributor to Breitbart News.
Tyrmand expressed relief that the Polish government opted to intervene and deny the honor being bestowed on a “divisive” person such as Kurek.
“Common sense prevailed,” Tyrmand said. “Nobody wanted to be in a room with her, including me.”