New Polish government blacklist targets civil and media organizations

Marcin Warchoł claims that the Tusk administration is aiming to exclude from public discourse those institutions that dissent from its political stance and offer differing viewpoints, in an effort to mute them and exclude them from public engagement.

New Polish government blacklist targets civil and media organizations
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Revelations that the Polish Ministry of Culture, under Bartłomiej Sienkiewicz, was compiling a black list has been labeled as “a scandal and an attack on civil society” by Marcin Warchoł, the ex-justice minister in the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) government.

“It’s the destruction of social organizations and media institutions. It’s not just public media anymore, but also private associations and foundations that do not speak with Donald Tusk’s voice are to be attacked. It’s simply about closing the system,” Warchołd told television wPolsce.pl.

wPolityce.pl acquired the list through correspondence exchanges between the ministry and one of its contacts, where discussions about reducing funding and severing ties with various media outlets and organizations were detailed, Remix News reports.

The entities on the blacklist encompass Caritas Polska, a Christian charity; Ordo Iuris, a Catholic legal think tank; TV Republika, an independent broadcaster; conservative publications such as Do Rzeczy, Sieci, Fronda, and Tygodnik Solidarność; alongside numerous Catholic and conservative civil society organizations.

Marcin Warchoł claims that the Tusk administration is aiming to exclude from public discourse those institutions that dissent from its political stance and offer differing viewpoints, in an effort to mute them and exclude them from public engagement.

Conservative commentator Rafał Ziemkiewicz informed the website DoRzeczy.pl that “he is proud of seeing the weekly magazine Do Rzeczy blacklisted and that he would have been more upset had the weekly been sponsored by the ministry under minister Sienkiewicz’s stewardship."

Ziemkiewicz further stated that the government is suggesting there was corruption involved with civil society organizations and media outlets receiving grants funded by the public.

He added that the Tusk administration's conduct reminds him of the provisional government's actions following the February Revolution in Russia in 1917. That government believed detaining the Tsar's family and conducting a thorough investigation into Rasputin would suffice, yet the populace anticipated measures addressing their actual issues, like food and safety.

When questioned about his views on why organizations such as the Christian charity Caritas were being blacklisted, Ziemkiewicz suggested that it indicated the government now viewed the Catholic Church as an adversary.

He explained that the Church was targeted for attack whenever it vied for funding against charitable and ideological projects advocating for LGBT rights, which received backing from the current parliamentary majority.

“Anything that comes from conservative circles is to be condemned and combatted,” concluded Ziemkiewicz.

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