FROM THE DESK OF
OF THE UNITED STATES OF POLAND
August 13, 2021
The Honorable Antony Blinken
Secretary of State
United States State Department
2100 C Street
Dear Mr. Secretary,
I share your concern about media freedom, included in the State Department’s August 11, 2021 statement.
With equal concern for the freedom of media, Poland watched the closure of President Trump’s Facebook account, banning of the New York Post’s Twitter account or exclusion of the Parler portal from the media space in the US by Big Tech.
These examples show that large corporations must be tamed and that the lack of public scrutiny leads to abuses of free speech and media freedom.
As a child growing up in communist Poland I remember how we listened to the free media coming from the Voice of America from Washington at the time.
I believe this sentiment guided the decision of KRRiT (the Polish FCC) of 2015 when TVN was given the opportunity to deal with the Scripps Network corporation in defiance of art. 22 of TVN’s articles of association which speaks about the limit of capital from outside Europe.
It was a carte blanche that a few years later gave Discovery Inc. 100% ownership of TVN in Poland and unprecedented access of an American corporation to the Polish market.
Discovery Inc. offered Polish audiences an interesting and professional programme offer, but not in the information segment. This segment is particularly important for the Polish people, who have been bombarded by government media propaganda for 76 years.
Discovery’s flagship daily news program TVN Fakty in Poland is anchored today by the grandson of the head of the propaganda department of the Gomulka era communists, who confiscated the property of Polish Jews. Two weeks ago, a TVN/Discovery journalist, like a communist agitator, intervened in Cuban protests in Washington, creating a scandal embarrassing for Poland’s image. A year ago, another TVN journalist took an active part in the scuffle during the protests for COVID19.
I do not intend to defend the PIS political party in power in Poland, but as a political scientist I understand why the issue of compatibility with capital ownership laws in the media has been raised now.
The lexTVN law stems from the fear of a repeat of the situation that occurred during the 2020 presidential election in Poland, when another US corporation, Facebook, interfered in the Polish presidential election by blocking accounts of candidates, shadow banning posts, and limiting the reach of posts by candidates.
As an independent ‘telling like it is’ candidate of the Nation for the presidency, I was eliminated from the election by a US corporation. My 700 000 followers Facebook account was blocked for the period of 2.5 months out of 3 months of the presidential campaign.
The result of these actions was a total breakdown of the Polish system of electoral democracy. The date of the election was changed beyond the time allowed by the constitution and as a result Mr Duda was illegally elected president, contrary to the constitution and the rule of the law.
That is why, on the basis of the petition of the Polish people, I have taken over the office of President ad interim, until fair and legal presidential election in Poland free from foreign interference are held.
These are the facts that cannot be found in news reports of TVN Fakty or government controlled TVP. This is what the “free” and “reliable” media in Poland look like today.
So let us work on the solution to this issue together.
I hereby propose that we create a task force to mediate the lex TVN act. I propose that the group include a representative of the U.S. Department of State, a representative of the Polish Government, an opposition representative, a representative of Discovery Inc. and myself as the mediator.
I am confident that together we can find solutions satisfactory to all the parties involved.
As President of the United States of Poland, I am a Polish citizen and an American citizen. Like Polish-American revolutionary Casimir Pulaski – I am a man of “two hearts” which beat equally for both nations. America has given me freedom, Poland has given me hope. Pulaski fought for freedom Ours and Yours. So, like Pulaski, I say: let us fight together for freedom of press – Ours and Yours.