You may recall that we’ve discussed once already the accusations against Solomon Morel, now 86 years old, and the Polish request to Israel to extradite him back to Poland to face war crimes and genocide charges. Morel is accused of having been responsible for the deaths of 1500 German soldiers in a camp after the war. When the accusations first surfaced in 1994, he left for Poland for Israel where he remains today. Israel has now officially refused for the second time the request for his extradition.
There are some steaming Poles. Ms. Ewa Koj, the Polish prosecutor on this matter, expressed her disappointment with Israel’s position, stating that all crimes against humanity should be tried. “There should be one measure for judging war criminals,” She said, “Irrespective whether they are German, Israeli or any other nationality.”
Allow me to repeat that. “German, Israeli or any other nationality.”
To put that quote in perspective, let’s quote from the letter Israel’s Justice Ministry wrote to the Poles in denying Morel’s extradition:
“In light of the facts, there appears to be no basis to charge Mr. Morel with serious crimes, let alone crimes of `genocide’ or `crimes against the Polish nation.’ If anything, it would seem to us that Mr. Morel and his family were clearly victims of crimes of genocide committed by the Nazis and the Polish collaborators.”
Jedwabne is what shames the Poles and lends credence to the guilt some of them feel about their treatment of the millions of Jews who lived in their midst. There, a massacre of Jews by Poles took place, and the story has surfaced again in recent years, not allowing a reinvigorated and hopeful post-Soviet-era Poland to forget a sorry chapter in their past. The desire to bring Morel to trial may be driven by just motives, but the giveaway sentence is the one placing the Israelis next to Germans on the list of war criminals. That, as they say, is the money quote.