Friday, February 23, 2007

Thin Skin

As both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush can attest, the American president is often the target of all sorts of vicious barbs. However, it looks like Poland isn't used to such abuse.

Poland's conservative government Tuesday lashed out at a German left-wing daily that satirized Polish President Lech Kaczynski, as officials demanded that political leaders in Germany condemn the newspaper.

Prime Minister Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz attacked the article in the Tageszeitung daily as "disgusting."

"It's hard to imagine that someone in Poland could publish similar comments about other heads of state. A reaction is necessary," he stormed.

Andrzej Krawczyk, an official in Kaczynski's office, said he was in touch with German Chancellor Angela Merkel's officials over the article....

Polish Foreign Minister Anna Fotyga said that the "lack of reaction from Germany's principal politicians is disturbing."

"Never before, even in press attacks on Saddam Hussein or (Belarus) President Alexander Lukashenko, have we had to deal with an attack on such a scale and using such language," Fotyga added....

The Tageszeitung daily, which is close to Germany's opposition Greens party and anti-globalisation groups and which is known for its lack of reserve in voicing opinions, published an article June 26 headlined "The Polish new potatoes" as part of a series entitled "Rogues who want to rule the world."

Huh? Imagine how much time it would take for George W. Bush to explicitly repudiate everything that any American paper (baby seal clubber, Communist, or in between) should choose to print.


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