Disinfo: Polish authorities are trying to change the way the Poles perceive the WWII events


The historical policy carried out by Polish authorities manipulates the history of Poland during the years of WWII – their main goal is to achieve a radical change in perception of WWII events by the Poles.


This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism – it accuses Poland and other Western states in the falsification of WWII history and attempts to “wipe out the decisive role of the USSR in victory over Nazi Germany”. At the same time, Russia tries to promote the idea that the USSR did not play any negative role in the events of 1939. See examples referring to the Kremlin’s disinformation on the Ribbentrop-Molotov pact here, here and here.

There is no evidence of substantial difference in perception of the key WWII events between the official Polish historical policy, opinions of mainstream Polish historians and attitudes of a predominant part of the Polish society.

See similar examples of the Russian historical revisionism concerning Poland here and here.


  • Reported in: Issue164
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 01/09/2019
  • Language/target audience: Polish
  • Country: USSR, Russia, Poland
  • Keywords: Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, Historical revisionism, WWII


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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Poland did not invite Russia to the anniversary of the WWII outbreak because of the will of the US

The Russian delegation was not invited to take part in the Ceremony of the 80th Anniversary of WWII outbreak because of the United States’ will. The current interpretation of the WWII events is imposed on Poland by the “overseas ideologist” – Polish authorities are completely subordinated to the position of the USA.



Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative claiming that the United States fully control the foreign policy of Poland. See other examples of this message here, here and here.

Poland's decision not to invite the Russian delegation to WWII commemoration ceremony has to do with Russian aggression against Ukraine. Krzysztof Szczerski, Chief adviser to the Polish president, stated in March 2019 that the anniversary ceremony will be held “in the company of countries with whom Poland now cooperates closely for peace, based on the respect for international law, for the sovereignty of nations and of their territories”. This point was reiterated by Jacek Sasin, Polish Deputy Prime Minister in July, who said: "I think it would be inappropriate to mark the anniversary of the beginning of the armed aggression against Poland with the participation of a leader who today treats his neighbours using the same methods."

Inquiry into Russia’s involvement in the MH17 case is unfounded

The accusation of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) regarding Russia’s involvement in the crash of the “Boeing” Malaysian MH17 plane is unfounded, biased and unilateral.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative doubting the integrity and findings of the investigation process of the MH17 downing.

The criminal investigation in the case was led by the Joint Investigation Team - JIT - since in 2014. On 28 September 2016, the JIT announced that flight MH17 was shot down by a missile from the 9M38 series, which was launched by a BUK TELAR missile system. The system was transported from the Russian Federation to an agricultural field near the town of Pervomaiskyi in Eastern Ukraine, from where the missile was launched. After firing, the system - with 1 missing missile - went back to the Russian Federation. On the 24th of May 2018, the JIT announced its conclusion the BUK TELAR used to shoot down MH17 came from the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade, a unit of the Russian armed forces from Kursk in the Russian Federation.

USSR refused reparations in favour of the Polish People’s Republic

According to an agreement reached during the Potsdam Conference, Poland should have received reparations from the USSR’s share. During the implementation of the reparations program, the USSR took into account the difficult situation of Poland, the German Democratic Republic, and it refused receiving the reparations. USSR refused in favour of the Polish People’s Republic as well.


Мisinterpretation of historical facts. The refusal of the USSR from reparation was not in favor of the Polish People's Republic. On the contrary, the PPR also refused reparations under pressure of USSR.

Following the results of the Potsdam Conference, the USSR received the right to seize property and valuables from the eastern zone of Germany, as well as take German assets in Bulgaria, Hungary, Eastern Austria, Romania and Finland. Britain, the US and France pledged to transfer to the Soviet Union about a quarter of the dismantled equipment from the western zone. At the same time, Moscow was supposed to satisfy the reparation claims of Poland from its share (15%).  In practice, the implementation of these provisions was not always consistent with Poland's expectations.