On 2 August this year, In Wrocław various patriotic groups organized a protest in defence of the filmmaker Grzegorz Braun, and also against using the administration of justice for systemic defence of communist criminals against art. 2 and 19 of the Constitution of the Republic of Poland. Grzegorz Braun informed about his being sentenced in a talk with the Catholic Association of Journalists and the issue was publicized from the beginning by the portal It concerns the event from 6 years before. The filmmaker says that on 12 April 2008 he had been attacked by 5 policemen who refused to prove their identity. He made an official complaint about this issue, and later…..he was accused of mugging at the functionaries. The filmmaker was sentenced to fine of over 3 thousand zlotys. So, he appealed to the court of higher instance. After reconsideration of the case by the court of the first instance, a judge remitted the case. Everything lasted three and a half year. Then the filmmaker started demanding compensation, thinking that for three and a half year he had been nagged by the police, procurators, courts, he was threatened with imprisonment.

During the last court trial, a policeman entered a court hall, who had arrested the filmmaker 6 years before and talked to a judge for a while. According to the court, Braun probably called a functionary ‘a bandit’ or ‘a thief’. As the filmmaker explained in an interview with, it was not true. He had never used the word ‘thief’, and speaking about ‘a bandit’, he had referred to the events from 6 years before, when he was arrested with the breach of law – as he states. Braun left the court room in a protest, for which the court sentenced him for 7 days in custody. Although the filmmaker came to serve the imprisonment willfully, he was not taken by a penal institution. Next, because of the intervention of the court, he was taken into custody by the police. Earlier – during the absence of the filmmaker – functionaries searched his flat.

What is astonishing is the fact that the administration of justice has been dealing with this issue for so many years and imposes punishment incommensurable to an offence and towards the former officers of the Safety Services, judges are so worried about their health and good well-being. Moreover, one should mention 20 years of attempts to judge Czesław Kiszczak for the massacre of miners from Silesian mines ‘Wujek’ and ‘Manifest Lipcowy’. Not earlier than in 2012 did the District Court sentence Kiszczak for two years of imprisonment in suspension. However, he made an appeal about the verdict and the court decided to examine whether the health of Kiszczak allows for judging him.

Finally the appeal court decided on the basis of the opinion of the legal doctors that the illness of the defendant is a long-term obstacle to be present in the court (recently Kiszczak, being healthy and in good health condition, has appeared at the funeral of Wojciech Jaruzelski).

The proceeding of the court towards Grzegorz Braun make us suspect that the issue has a wider context. The filmmaker is famous for films devoted to communist nomenclature. One the last ones: ‘Transformation. From Lenin to Putin’ is not only a lesson of history, but first of all, shows how various manipulation techniques were used to influence the behavior of millions of people in the Soviet Russia. As Braun notes, ‘transformation’ took place and still takes place in our country. In the latest part of the cycle about ‘transformation’ entitled ‘Nomenclature, de-information and controlled crisis’ he shows the backstage of events in the years: 1956, 1962 – the crisis in Cuba, 1968 – from Polish March to the invasion into Czech Republic in August. The whole project consists of 5 parts, the last of them tell about the turn of the 80s and 90s of the last century. Grzegorz Braun admits that he deals with the history of the so-called transformation of political system in order to understand better who and how organizes our life. ‘It is only an attempt to perceive some repeatable elements in this history, some permanent variants of a game, permanent tricks which have also been tested on us’ – he explains. Shortly speaking, his ‘Transformation’ shows methods of the functioning of the totalitarian system, such is, surveillance and de-information which are characteristic for political parties aiming at maintaining the authority at any cost.

On the portal Maciej Lisowski, the director of the Foundation LEX NOSTRA, referring to the case of Braun, stated that the proceeding of the court towards the film director is a disgrace for the Polish administration of justice. He asks: ‘How can one keep a man in the state of allegation for so many years, later acquit him, and next sentence him again to the most drastic punishment in the form of imprisonment for his leaving the court hall? I understand that the court felt insulted with the fact that Mr. Grzegorz did not want to participate in the theatre which he was given, and, in relation to it, he was sentenced to the punishment like an unruly actor’.

Well, judges should care about seriousness of the court, but they are often separated from the reality which is proven by the fact that only 20 per cent of the society believe in their reliability and impartiality.


"Niedziela" 32/2014

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Fr Jaroslaw Grabowski • E-mail: