An item in the 8th August issue of The Independent cites Jerzy Byzczynski – or ‘George’ Byczynski, as he appears to call himself at the moment – calling upon Polish workers in the UK to donate “Polish blood” instead of participating in a planned migrant workers’ strike. Your journalist lauds this as a “protest of a more positive kind”.
Byczynski is the chair of Patriae Fidelis (“loyal to the fatherland”), a UK based front organisation for the National Movement, which is a coalition of Polish far right and neo-fascist groups such as the All-Polish Youth and National-Radical Camp (ONR). Although Patriae Fidelis often presents itself as an innocuous support group for Poles living in the UK, a slogan on its website gives you an inkling as to which way the wind blows: “I am Polish, therefore I have Polish duties” – a quotation from Roman Dmowski, chief ideologue of the pre-war National-Democratic Party, which was violently hostile towards Jews and the workers’ movement.
It should come as no surprise, then, that Jerzy Byczynski and his latest front group, the British Poles Initiative, are no fans of strike action and would rather donate some “Polish blood”. Polish migrant workers should ignore Byczynski’s scab call and go ahead with the migrant strike, which will hopefully be joined by workers of other nationalities.
Update as of 11 August 2015: The Independent did not print my letter. Instead, it ran another article in support of the “Polish blood” campaign, once again favourably citing Jerzy Byczynski (Patriae Fidelis) as offering a “positive alternative” to the migrant strike. It is not as if nobody warned The Independent now.
Also on board: Joanna Dabrowskia, chair of the Conservative Friends of Poland. Plus Ella Vine, self-proclaimed ‘community leader’ and chair of the Labour Friends of Poland: in an article for Progress, the organisation that represents the pro-business Blairite faction of the Labour Party, she came out in support of Byczynski’s “Polish blood” campaign.
Evidently, any alliance will do if it helps to suppress workers’ self-activity…