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Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

Aberdare, United...
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287 posts
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Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

Just got back from Krakow and was dismayed to see several anti-Semitic bits of graffiti dotted around the city which at first angered me, then dismayed me. 80% of it was accompanied by the now familiar "WISLA SHARKS" footy crew logos so I just put it down to brain-cell deficient, teenage "tough guys" trying to gain respect with their crews.

I also encountered the attitude that "the government takes our money and gives it to the Jews" from 1 or 2 people which got me thinking this misplaced anger is due to areas such as Podgorze / Kazimierz becoming gentrified and the purchase of property for tourist use / luxury apartments forcing everyday residents out of the housing market?

Anyone else seen or heard this stuff and got any thoughts? As an idealistic tourist to the country, I appreciate all comments.

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dallas tx.
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1. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

no...not me!....never....i suppose it could be worse....they could be shooting em up like in western europe!

tyne and wear
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2. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

We've noticed lots of graffiti but couldn't understand any of it. It was everywhere and quite an eyesore. Sad if it's directed at a specific community

Aberdare, United...
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287 posts
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3. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

A star of David with a line drawn through it doesn't really need a translator unfortunately. Accompanying words roughly translate as "No Jews!" or " Jews Out!". Probably the work of bored, misinformed knuckle-draggers. See it now for free before it becomes a tourist attraction and you have to pay 15pln to view it.

Warsaw, Poland
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21 posts
4. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

This attitude is the result of the controversial decision by the Polish government to pay pensions to 50,000 Israelis.

timesofisrael.com/for-first-time-poland-to-p…

Edited: 1:23 pm, March 26, 2015
Aberdare, United...
Level Contributor
287 posts
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9 helpful votes
5. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

That would explain a lot of it. Obviously it's a far-ranging topic to discuss and given the (over) sensitive nature of TA moderators I'd probably be discussing it in vain on this forum. Thanks for the heads-up though.

Warsaw, Poland
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21 posts
6. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

Yes, this thread is not going to last long but I wanted to add that the anger you witnessed was not entirely misguided - Poland did not start this bloody war!! Why should we pay for the Nazi and Soviet oppression is beyond me, too.

Edited: 1:55 pm, March 26, 2015
Warsaw, Poland
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7. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

@"Niguel Z"

BS. This grafitti has been there waay before.

It has little to do with antisemitism - as I do not remember a single anti jewish attack in my lifetime (and if it would be it would become a world headline news within minutes). The abundance of this type of grafitti in Kraków (not in any other city like Warsaw, Wrocław, Gdańsk, Poznań etc.) has more to do with rivalry of football hooligans from two Krakow teams (Wisła vs Cracovia). One of them used to be traditionally Jewish, so their retarded rivals use the "anti-jewish" graffitti to offend the fans of the other team. Same situation (two teams, one formerely Jewish one) exists in Łódź, and similar kind of racist grafitti is present there. To my knowledge same king of hooliganism exists in UK agains (formerely) jewish football teams, eg.:

express.co.uk/news/uk/559960/West-Ham-Totten…

spiegel.de/international/europe/football-why…

This does not mean anti-semitism does not exist in Poland, it saidly does, as all other kind of racist opinions, but it is much less widespread than you would think based on some graffitti.

Warsaw, Poland
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8. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

@Niguel Z

Bu11shit^2

Polish citizens who were victims of Nazi and Soviet crimes do get pension from the polish government. Period. It does not matter (obviously) if they are jewish, catholic, buddhist or atheist. It also does not matter if they live in Poland, USA, UK or Israel. Simple, if you are polish, and you are victim of WW2, you get the pension. It does not have anything to do with people having racist views.

9. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

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Poland
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10. Re: Anti-Semitic Graffiti around Krakow

Sadly there is a major problem with football hooligans' graffiti in Krakow. Just today I myself have reported one such nasty scribble in my neighbourhood to the municipal police. They will remove it in a couple of days and I am pretty sure it will re-appear in another couple of weeks or so. As both Krakow city authorities and the police are a bunch of incompetent guys they seem unable to cope with the problem in an effective manner.

A poster above (137_036) has explained mostly correctly the origins and meaning of this "graffiti". I would add only one more to that - the football club in question was not even originally Jewish, it had some (a few) Jewish players prior to WW II. Hence the anti-Semitic slur stuck to them and continues to today, even though it is not directed against Jews anymore, just against hooligans associated with this football team.

Sadly because of incompetence of the city authorities and the police on the one hand and large sums of public money lavished on the football clubs, no strings attached, on the other hand, the solution to this problem is not in sight. Those groups of hooligans have deteriorated into proper gangs, dealing in drugs etc., and there are even regular fatalities in Krakow in their regular fights (they use machetes, large knives etc.). Anyway, they fight with each other, visitors are not involved. Such fights almost always occur in faraway districts of Krakow where a tourist would have no reason to go.

This has to be distinguished from the "government takes our money and gives it to the Jews" attitude also mentioned by OP, as it's completely different matter. Such attitude is some residual anti-Semitism present among a dwindling minority of mostly elderly people. I've never heard of any act of violence committed because of that. In fact a growing number of Jews settle in Poland and it is considered safer for them than many places in Western Europe. Among younger people the attitude towards Jews and Israel is mostly positive and gets better. A remark, typical for such residual anti-Semitism of elderly people, that this or another politician etc. is of Jewish origin is now usually met with a shrug and "so what?".

Hope that sheds some light. Altogether - I fully agree, this graffiti is shameful, but the story behind it is a bit more complicated than simple anti-Semitism.

Edited: 3:28 pm, March 26, 2015