Thursday, June 23, 2011

Our Moms are from Sopot

The Polish and German governments recently held a joint sitting chaired by Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Donald Tusk in a clear sign of improving relations. Many important decisions were taken. For example, it was decided that indeed the Nord Stream pipeline to take Russian gas straight to Germany along the Baltic seabed would not block expansion of Poland's Swinoujscie port.

Common roots were also found: Merkel's and Tusk's mothers were apparently both born in the Polish city of Sopot, the German Zoppot before WWII. It was not, though, established whether their grandfathers served together in the Wehrmacht.

Tusk, in line with his view that everything is fine and dandy, said the unusually close friendship between the governments had resulted in increased trade between the two economies since he took power in 2007. I would rather bet on the fact the German economy is handling the EU's crisis much better than other Polish trading partners and hence its growing importance, but whatever.

The message of love was quickly picked up by other institutions. Out of several Polish cities, Wroclaw (or Breslau, as the Germans used to have it) was picked as the 2016 Capital of Culture as clearly the most "European" of the lot.

The Polish football association PZPN also decided to move Poland's friendly with Germany from a Warsaw where the stadium is not ready to...Danzig (or Gdansk, according to its current Polish name). AND they plan to hold it in September.

I guess anyone who visits Gdansk for the September 1 anniversary celebrations of the German attack on Poland in 1939 that started WWII could stay until the football match. Unfortunately, for the Poles, odds are the outcome will result in another German victory....

1 comment:

  1. Nice twist at the end. Ha ha ha !! :-)

    I think the Polish did the Zoppot tourist board a favour changing the name to Sopot. The German name sounds like a Martian colony.