JAN EMIL SKIWSKI'S AND FELIKS BURDECKI'S IDEA OF A UNITED EUROPE (PRESENTED IN THE MAGAZINE 'PRZELOM', PUBLISHED IN KRAKÓW UNDER GERMAN OCCUPATION IN 1944-1945
The fact that the publishers and journalists of the magazine 'Przelom', which appeared in Kraków in 1944-1945 collaborated with the German authorities has by now been established beyond any doubt. This article tries to establish why Jan Emil Skiwski and Feliks Burdecki decided to collaborate with the Nazis, and in particular to reconstruct the motives that impelled them to carry on even when Germany's military situation was absolutely desperate. Odd as it may seem, their texts indicate that their belief in the ultimate victory of Hitler's Germany remained intact until the very end. This conviction made them try again - though obviously without any success - to persuade the Polish underground to stop fighting the Germans. The Poles, they argued, should stand up in defence of Western values that are threatened by the Soviets. Furthermore, Skiwski and Burdecki conjured up a vision of a Europe united after the war with victorious Germany helping other nations adopt and implement the doctrine of national socialism. The theme of 'united Europe', recurs not only in practically every new issue of 'Przelom'. It is also conspicuous in other publications written by that pair of journalists and in their memorandum addressed to Joseph Bühler, Head of the Propaganda Department of the General Gouvernement. Skiwski and Burdecki were no doubt part of a broader front of collaborators who accepted the destruction of traditional national states and the reconstruction of Europe according to a fascist model.
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