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Letter to the HR Foreign Affairs Committee Members
Honorable Rep. _______________________
U.S. House of Representatives
Foreign Affairs Committee
Please reject Bill H.R. 1226! Please do not forward this anti-Polish legislation to the House of Representatives for further consideration! Poland, the strongest ally of the United States in Europe, is the primary target of this deceiving and legally erroneous bill. As the country with the largest pre-war population of Jews, Poland is targeted by Jewish restitution organizations for “heirless property” restitution worth tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars.
I urge you to reject Bill H.R.1226 on legal grounds for the following reasons:
During WWII, Poland suffered proportionally the greatest human and material losses but was never compensated for these losses.
Over the years, Poland has resorted to various means to resolve private and communal property claims, including the return of properties to their rightful owners and monetary compensation.
According to the 1960 treaty between the government of the U.S. and Poland regarding claims of nationals of the United States, Poland compensated American nationals whose assets had been nationalized or wrongfully seized, and the United States provided indemnity to Poland against any further property claims. Therefore, Bill H.R. 1226 violates the terms of the 1960 bilateral treaty.
Poland returned Jewish communal property pursuant to the 1997 law on the relationship between the Polish State and Jewish religious organizations. Over 2,500 communal properties, including synagogues, cemeteries and cultural centers, have been either compensated for or returned.
All Jewish Holocaust survivors of Polish origin are eligible to receive a monthly pension from the Polish Government according to the law on war veterans and victims of war and post-war oppression. Thus, Holocaust survivors who were Polish citizens during WWII have been receiving financial assistance from the Polish Government regardless of their current place of residence. So, the claim for heirless property compensation in order to assist Holocaust survivors is duplicative with respect to Poland.
Restitution for heirless property is against the law of the United States, Western legal tradition and Polish law. In all Western countries, the US included, heirless property escheats to the state.
According to the Congressional Authority Statement, Bill H.R. 1226 is authorized pursuant to the Commerce Clause of Article 1 Section 8 Clause 3 of the Constitution of the United States. The Commerce Clause has nothing to do with this bill, which is based on the legally non-binding Terezin Declaration concerned with the well-being of Holocaust survivors.
I urge you to reject Bill H.R. 1226 on moral grounds for the following reasons:
With respect to heirless property claims, Bill H.R. 1226 has no basis in law. Therefore it relies on highly logically-questionable moral justification exclusively.
Some Holocaust organizations and scholars have been engaged for years in discrimination of Polish victims and distortion of Holocaust history by diminishing the suffering of Polish victims in WWII, disregarding Polish witnesses to history, marginalizing and suppressing the voice of Polish victims, eliminating ethnic Poles from the definition of Holocaust victims, and sidelining German genocide of ethnic Poles in Holocaust education.
There is not a single museum anywhere in the United States commemorating the millions of Polish victims of the German WWII genocide while there were 75 Holocaust museums worldwide as of 2011.
Some Holocaust scholars and educators have been overemphasizing and widely promoting questionable research and biased education about Polish co-responsibility for the Holocaust of the Jews, while effectively suppressing research and education about Jewish collaboration in killing Jews and Jewish killings of ethnic Poles.
The majority of Holocaust scholars and educators have never publicly objected to or unequivocally condemned the spread of major Holocaust falsehoods such as “Polish concentration camps” or “Polish death camps.” Such inactions on their part constitute Holocaust distortion in its pure form and amount to Holocaust denial in accordance with paragraph 5 of the definition of Holocaust denial adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.
The use of the term “Polish concentration camp” is deceptive and offends millions of Polish people, whose relatives were brutally murdered by the German occupying forces in the concentration and death camps set up and operated by the German Third Reich.
Some Holocaust researchers engage in brutal smear campaigns against Poland by accusing the Polish people, before the entire world, of Polish complicity and culpability for German crimes committed on the Jews.
In order to showcase a moral justification for “heirless” property claims against Poland, a worldwide smear and disinformation campaign has just been launched under the pretense of opposition to the amendment to an anti-defamation bill passed by the Polish Parliament.
On January 27, 2018, one leading Israeli politicians Yair Lapid announced: “these were Polish death camps and no law will change it.” This terrible Holocaust lie did not prompt condemnation by the US Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Instead, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum expressed “deep concern” over the adopted legislation, falsely interpreting the law in order to accuse Poland of making it illegal “to reference the complicity of some Poles in crimes against the Jews committed during the German occupation.” Those who resort to such dishonest methods have no right to refer to and call for moral justice.
According to the Israeli War Crimes Commission less than 0.1% of Poles (often Polish Germans) collaborated with Nazi Germany. 99.9% of the Polish people DID NOT!
Bill H.R. 1226 is morally offensive because it treats the Polish State and the Polish Nation as perpetrators of the German crimes committed against the Jews rather than the victim of German WWII atrocities. Poland suffered the most of all countries during WWII. Polish citizens, both Poles and ethnic Jews, experienced physical destruction like no one else. Through Bill H.R. 1226 one victim frames the other victim as the perpetrator in order to extort compensation in blatant disregard of the historical truth. That is not moral, and that is not just.
I strongly urge you to reject this legally flawed and immoral Bill. H.R. 1226 causes pain and suffering to Poles all over the world and exacerbates their WWII trauma.
|HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES // FOREIGN AFFAIRS COMMITTEE|
|REPRESENTATIVE||DISTRICT||FOREIGN AFFAIRS CONTACT PERSON||PHONE||FAX||ADDRESS|
|Ami Bera||CA-7th||202-225-5716||202-226-1298||1431 Longworth HOB, Washington, DC 20515|
|916-635-0505||916-635-0514||8950 Cal Center Dr, Building 3, #100, Sacramento, CA 95826|
|Ann Wagner||M-2nd||202-225-1621||435 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Bradley S. Schneider||IL-10th||202-225-4835||202-225-0837||1432 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Brad Sherman||CA-30th||202-225-5911||202-225-5879||2181 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|818-501-9200||818-501-1554||5000 Van Nuys Blvd., #420,Sherman Oaks, CA 91403|
|Brendan F. Boyle||PA-13th||202-225-6111||202-226-0611||1133 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Brian Fitzpatrick||PA-8th||202-225-4276||202-225-9511||514 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Brian Mast||FL-18th||202-225-3026||202-225-8398||2182 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Christopher H. Smith||NJ-4th||202-225-3765||202-225-7768||2373 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Daniel M. Donovan||NY-11th||202-225-3371||202-226-1272||1541 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Dana Rohrabacher||CA-48th||202-225-2415||2300 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|714-960-6483||101 Main Street, Suite 380, Huntington Beach, CA 92648|
|Darrell Issa||CA-49th||202-225-3906||202-225-3303||2269 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|760-599-5000||760-599-1178||1800 Thibodo Road, #310, Vista, CA 92081|
|David N. Cicilline||RI-1st||202-225-4911||(202) 225-3290||2244 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Dina Titus||NV-1st||202-225-5965||2464 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Edward R. Royce, Chairman||CA-39th||202-225-4111||202-226-0335||2310 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|626-964-5123||626-810-3891||1380 S. Fullerton Road #203, Rowland Heights, CA 91748|
|Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member||NY-16th||202-225-2464||202-225-5513||2462 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Francis Rooney||FL-19th||202-225-2536||202-226-3547||120 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Gerald E. Connolly||VA-11th||202-225-1492||703-354-1284||2238 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Gregory W. Meeks||NY-5th||202-225-3461||202-226-4169||2234 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Ileana Ros-Lehtinen||FL-39th||202-225-3931||202-225-5620||2206 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.||WI-5th||202-225-5101||202-225-3190||2449 Rayburn HOB, Washington, DC 20515|
|Joaquin Castro||TX-20th||202-225-3236||202-225-1915||1221 Longworth House, Washington, DC 20515|
|210-348-8216||727 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd, #B-128, San Antonio, TX 78206|
|Joe Wilson||SC-2nd||202-225-2452||202-225-2455||1436 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|803-642-6416||803-642-6418||1930 University Parkway, #1600, Aiken, SC 29801|
|Karen Bass||CA-37th||202-225-7084||202-225-2422||2241 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|(323) 965-1422||(323) 965-1113||4929 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010|
|Lee Zeldin||NY-1st||202-225-3826||202-225-3143||1517 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Lois Frankel||FL-21st||202-225-9890||1037 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|561-998-9045||561-998-9048||2500 N. Military Trail, #490, Boca Raton, FL 33431|
|Mark Meadows||NC-11th||202-225-6401||202-226-6422||1024 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Michael McCaul||TX-10th||202-225-2401||202-225-5955||2001 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Mo Brooks||AL-5th||202-225-4801||256-355-9406||2400 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Norma J. Torres||CA-35th||202-225-6161||202-225-8671||1713 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|909-481-6474||909-941-1362||3200 Inland Empire Blvd, #200B, Ontario, CA 91764|
|Paul Cook||CA-8th||202-225-5861||202-225-6498||1222 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|760-247-1815||909-797-4997||14955 Dale Evans Parkway, Apple Valley, CA 92307|
|Robin Kelly||IL-2nd||202-225-0773||202-225-4583||1239 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Ron De Santis||FL-6th||202-225-2706||202-226-6299||1524 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Scott Perry||PA-4th||202-225-5836||202-226-1000||1207 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Steve Chabot||OH-1st||202-225-2216||202-225-3012||2371 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|(513) 684-2723||(513) 421-8722||441 Vine Street, Rm. 3003|
|Ted Deutch||FL-22nd||202-225-3001||202-225-5974||2447 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515, Cincinnati, OH 45202|
|Ted Lieu||CA-33rd||202-225-3976||236 Cannon HOB|
|323-651-1040||5055 Wilshire Blvd, #310, Los Angeles, CA 90036|
|Ted Poe||TX-2nd||202-225-6565||281-446-0252||2132 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Ted Yoho||FL-3rd||202-225-5744||202-225-3973||511 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Thomas Garrett||VA-5th||202-225-4711||202-225-5681||415 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Tom Marino||PA-10th||202-225-3731||202-225-9594||2242 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Tom Suozzi||NY-3rd||202-225-3335||202-225-4669||226 Cannon HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Tulsi Gabbard||HI-2nd||202-225-4906||202-225-4987||1433 Longworth HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|William Keating||MA-9th||202-225-3111||202-225-5658||2351 Rayburn HOB,Washington, DC 20515|
|Committee on Foreign Affairs c/o Oren Adaki||202-225-1500||5103 O'Neill Building,Washington, DC 20515|
|Longworth House Office Building, 9 Independence Ave SE, Washington, DC 20515|
|Cannon House Office Building, 27 Independence Ave SE, Washington, DC 20003|
|Rayburn House Office Building, 45 Independence Ave SW, Washington, DC 20515|