AND THE GERMANS ARE STILL DECEIVING
It would be best to ignore this film. However, if the Polish Television felt tempted to eliminate it, my boycott would be a sin of neglect. I managed to stay in front of TV, for the sake of a purely civilian duty. However, let’s start from the beginning.
Come, I will tell you a fairy tale….because as Prof. Szewach Weiss noticed, it is all about chronology…
There were five German friends, like in a fairy tale, who would give heaven to one another: two brothers, a Jew and two girls. Their story is told by the film ‘Our mothers, our fathers’. They are ordinary, even by their appearance, the ones with whom everybody can identify, friendly, human and normal, like every normal man – a German man, a Pole, a Ukrainian man or a Russian man can be. In a while they must get separated because two brothers serve in Wehrmacht and are sent to the Eastern front. The invasion to Poland is completely ignored, as if a real war had started just from the confrontation with Soviet Russia. On the boundless steppes of Ukraine and Russia the brothers with their friends are enjoying some freedom, adventure, the whole war appears to them as a hygienic operation of the German civilization on primitive beautiful areas of Eurasia. Certainly, on the way, there are sad experiences, from which the young Germans draw very bitter conclusions. And one of the brothers (an officer, the commander of a division) gets an order to kill a prisoner of war – a Soviet commissioner, which raises his noble resistance, and a Nazi soldier kills a Jewish child, and in the background henchmen chase the whole group of Jewish people. Certainly, as months and years are passing by, the war becomes different for them, than they imagined. And they imagined themselves bringing freedom on their rifles. In the film there is a statement that the Russians were welcoming them as saviors at the beginning of the war and only the bad character of Nazis, who gave an order to murder people, changed this image. And what? In another case, if Hitler had not appeared to be a fanatic murderer, would have Werhmacht taken a message to united Europe in the 40s of the previous century? Oh, how beautiful and instructing fairy tale is for ignorants of any nationality…..
Melodrama on the service of propaganda….because as Prof. Szewach Weiss noticed, it is all about proportions….
It is a film made professionally and in the convention of a fairy melodrama, so nice for an average viewer. Well, if such a melodramatic military film was to become only an entertaining movie, it would be all right. But it is not so! This fairy tale is dangerous. Let’s recall the words of a minister for propaganda of the Third Reich, dr. Goebbels, appreciated by Hitler, who stated that a lie often repeated, finally becomes the truth. The intention of the makers of this film is propagating a false picture of one’s history. And here what the film suggests. Well, it is the Germans’ fault. But what kind of the Germans? Those young ones whose fate we are watching with liking or those who are shown as Nazi fanatics, dangerous and penetrating the whole life of pre-war and war Germany? The answer is obvious for the film-makers: it is the fault of the Germans- fascists, those who will not forgive any ordinary German man or a Jew. Because as Prof. Szewach Weiss noticed, it is about proportions…
The four German friends like and respect their Jewish friend, one of the girls even loves him and there is also one Nazis man who persecutes him. What symptomatic proportions there are. That is in this way: The Germans were bad but there were also the good ones, accidentally dipped in a septic tank full of the criminal history. And other nations……Where there are other nations! Poles, and only they are shown in a shameful way in the film, as a personalization of the worldly disgusting anti-Semitism and, in addition – so that everybody would see – with headbands of the National Army on their sleeves. After all, it is a deliberate operation in order to befoul the memory about the National Army , and also showing its soldiers as film zombie. Whereas Soviet soldiers are somewhere in background and were treated with dignity in the film narration.
Our Polish anti-Semitic mothers and our Polish anti-Semitic fathers…
….as I understood Szewach Weiss, the Germans do not have right to expose a testimony of morality for any of oppressed nations…..
– I am appealing to the Germans: let us, Jews, conduct a dialogue with democratic Poland in this matter. It is not your business – said Prof. Szewach Weiss in a discussion which took place in a TV studio after the emission of the last episode of the film ‘Our mothers, our fathers’.
It could be possible to analyze the whole after-film discussion, but it is not a place for it. But only briefly. Somebody said that the film is tendentious, but it is interesting to watch. Somebody else added that it really has an anti-fascist character. ‘If I was a German viewer, I would be crowing with delight’ – he concluded. Somebody else noted that the film is an aftermath of the German ignorance, and somebody else said that the German television made a lot of money for this libel… Yes, because Poland appears in the film as something not essential between Russia and Germany. It is a war of titans. Russians are opponents, with whom one can build a new wonderful world after the war. Only Poles are somehow indolent and stupid, and also anti-Semites. Even the commander of the National Army shows his nobility towards a Jewish man and a military comrade in a rude way, by throwing a pistol at his feet at parting. The latest generations of the Germans gets a false image of the Second World War and strengthens the stereotype of a Pole – anti-Semite, a German man Nazis of undefined identity, a Russian man who became adamant only because crimes had been done to the Russians. The Germans in the film do not murder Poles at all!
This film should be watched again in details, in order to have an attitude towards false information. I am not strong enough to face this professionally made propaganda film again. We should have any illusions about the degree of the film- makers’ ignorance. They knew well what they were doing and for what purpose. And the sponsor of the film production knew well what he was spending money on. In this situation neither a discussion in a studio, nor mars face expression of the operator Piotr Kraśko, nor a watchful eye of a cameraman capturing anxiety and stress in German guests will not bring us satisfaction. Because if the Germans have well-being in mind, so do we. But it cannot be built on the falsehood nor a mythology, on fairy tales or melodrama.