We know now, thanks to sterling work from Bartek Wieliński in Wyborcza that the Polish Government had detailed intel from America about Putin's plans to invade Ukraine. In November. How did they plan for the humanitarian crisis the war would inevitably lead to? They spent twelve million on pictures of lightbulbs.
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As the Russian tanks piled up, Morawiecki in his wisdom, thought it was in Poland's best interests to disparage our allies. Nice going Matty. Brings to mind the story of the scorpion and the frog. Poland's PM just can't resist the urge to hurt people even when it's not in his interest. This is how PiS do things. Not content with screwing up their response to the pandemic and consistently and emphatically turning living people into dead ones, they then took one look at the influx of traumatized Ukrainian millions and went, "Ah it'll be okay, the people will figure something out."

And we did. As we all know, disasters come in threes, so when the giant flying spiders from Mars invade Earth, I'll sleep better knowing PiS will no doubt leave it to us to negotiate with our arachnid overlords. The Pole are good in a crisis? No, the Poles are great when they aren't being passive. The Ukrainian catastrophe has shaken Poland from its lethargy. Tragedy has a habit of doing that.

The PRACTICAL SILESIAN WIFE has a four year old Ukrainian boy in her hospital who asks anyone who enters his room "not to shoot him" and yes, it will again be those at all levels of the medical profession who get to take up the load when 1.7 million more people start getting sick. Schools too, I've already seen the challenges being faced by local Gliwice headmaster Krystian Szatka and members of his staff such as Basia Labryga who are doing their best to educate and console students such as Anastasiia, Kateryna and Daria.

Anastasiia and Kateryna are living on their own, working in a shop after school to pay the bills. Their respective families are back in eastern Ukraine sheltering in a basement. "Are you angry?" I asked them. "No, just sad," said Kateryna. "I want to hug my mother." At least the young boy who lives in my sister-in-law's home has his mother. Daniel is fourteen but looks older and was nearly co-opted into fighting the Russians because of his manly size. Fourteen eh? When I was that age, my main anxiety centred around acne and why I couldn't save Princess Toadstool in Super Mario. Fighting the Russian army in an hostile urban situation wasn't really on my radar. At least Daniel had good people around him, food in the fridge and as cities go, Gliwice is a good place. I don't know anyone here who isn't helping, emotionally,

financially or physically, ferrying people to and from the border and finding them space to live in what must be one of the greatest humanitarian aid operations since Dunkirk. A grass-roots mobilisation of decent, hard working people, or as Silesia's foremost writer said to me the other day, "a little less conversation, a little more action." Which brings us neatly to our good friend Matty, the Prime Minister, who back in December was hosting talks with Marine Le Pen, a politician so far to the right that one day she walked out of her home in Paris and landed in Moscow. Luckily for her a kind goblin gave her lots of gold so she could carry on bravely telling men like Matty that the EU is really Freddy Kruger in disguise whose real aim is to drown every puppy in Poland. In an interview with "Rzeczpospolita", Wielinski tells us, "Le Pen declared that Ukraine is in Russia's sphere of influence. All the while, knowing about Russia’s plan to invade Ukraine, Morawiecki did not react."

This PiS government is a fake entity. When a crisis arrives, they are useless. Worse than useless, during the pandemic they did more to help the virus than help us. They attack the EU yet warmly welcome Russian proxies who come to "talk."

When the war is over, we will have to give serious thought to mobilizing ourselves the way we have done over the last four weeks to avert the next humanitarian disaster heading our way; PiS's victory in the 2023 election.

***

Every day, 400 journalists at Gazeta Wyborcza write verified, fact-checked stories about Polish politics and society, keeping a critical eye on the ruling camp’s persistent assault on democratic values and the rule of law; the growing cultural tension between religious fundamentalism and human rights; and the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic. Our journalists are on the front lines in 25 Polish cities, reporting from the streets, hospitals, and courtrooms about issues that move public opinion.

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