Apparently, even the Poles know what's happening here............I just received this missive (unsolicited) from Michael Wisniewski, director of the Europa 21 Foundation. The English is a bit awkward, but his message is crystal clear. I have not corrected it -- it remains unedited.
View from Poland
It was the worst what American government was able to do.
This decision was announced on 17th September, when Poland was commemorating the 70th anniversary of soviet invasion. Day, when Soviet Union allied with nazis and stabbed our country in the back. This was effect of Nazi- Soviet Pact that was signed on 28th August in Moscow. After this day all dreams about resisting against Hitler perished - two evil empires combined their powers to destroy our freedom and sovereignty.
At the same day, 70 years later, Obama bowed to Kremlin. It was something that created really great turmoil in all Poland. What is worse - people here feel that they were betrayed. It's not only about the anti-missile shield. It's about polish attitude towards USA. United States were seen as the great defender of freedom and democracy all around the world. United States support Israel against Ahmadinejad's threats.
After 9/11 Poles expressed solidarity with USA without any hesitation. Despite the fact that we were risking alienation from some of our European partners. And after we joined US-led coalition against terrorism, we were verbally attacked by Jacques Chirac and Gerhard Shroeder - leaders of two major European powers. But our position was clear and firm - we would stay with USA and fight against common enemies - enemies who attacked our ally and the whole free world. No other country had so special status in Poland - almost 80% Poles sympathized with US. Poland is not great military power - but have some influence on the eastern Europe and was a real stronghold of American interests in this region. Whatever Germans, French or other UE countries would do - Poland always stood arm to arm with US.
Now it belongs to the past. It's not only about this incident, but it was something that created great outrage here. It's impossible to remain so positive towards US now – people are reacting emotionally. Even most pro-US media and journalists comment, that our close relations with USA was mistake. That we were wrong and we should focus on our closer neighbours - like France or Germany.
But some people understand - as I am, that this is wrong reaction. Wrong, because people don't recognize, that "America" (United States) is only a country, and have a policy that is set out by current government. All I can say is that Obama would undermine strong support for American world's policy not only in Poland and Czech Republic - but also in the whole region. This process cannot be revised under this government (Obama). But US won't lose Poland as ally. Because many people would realize this simple fact, that we can't blame US, but we can only blame Obama's administration. And Obama is not United States. What is more - many Americans understand, that Obama's foreign policy hurts US interests all around the world, and USA is the country, that would lose the most from his policies. So we should understand it here, in Europe - that the mayor victim is not Poland - but US...
The most sad thing is just seeing, how all anti-US groups in Europe, the same groups that some years ago shouted about American imperialism have their moment of triumph. They also point Poland saying with satisfaction - "look, US is moving back - you and your policy lost". Yes, it's their time. But we believe - that in future everything would change. Because US deserves a change now...
director of Europa 21 Foundation (Poland)