Opening Old Wounds

The European Union has faced cultural hurdles in getting member countries such as Poland to agree to a proposed population-based EU voting system, due to historical bitterness over Germany’s Nazi past. With a population of 82 million, Germany has the largest population of any EU member country. At the 2007 EU summit, the Polish Prime Minister stunned other EU leaders by claiming that Poland (with a current population of 38 million) has 28 million fewer people today as a result of World War II (1939-45). He accused the Germans of “incomprehensible crimes” against his country, as it was Germany’s invasion of Poland in 1939 that triggered the outbreak of war. While his views might not necessarily reflect the general feelings of the Polish population, his comments indicate that such attitudes still exist seven decades after the event.

In Asia, one of the challenges in achieving economic integration is a sense of resentment and suspicion felt to a certain degree towards the Japanese, due to Japan’s military occupation of such countries as China (in the 1930s) and Korea (1910-45). The Japanese called their attempt to dominate the Asia-Pacific the “Co-Prosperity Sphere”. Despite modern-day relationship-building efforts, there are considerable historical obstacles to overcome.

Is the past just the past? How should world leaders look beyond culturally engrained historical antagonisms to cooperate on modern-day issues? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

28 thoughts on “Opening Old Wounds

  1. Modular Kitchens have changed the idea of kitchen nowadays because it has provided household ladies with a comfortable yet a sophisticated space in which they will invest their quality time and space.

  2. Great paintings! This is the type of information that are supposed to be shared around the net. Shame on Google for now not positioning this submit upper! Come on over and visit my web site . Thanks =)

  3. I will immediately grab your rss as I can not find your e-mail subscription link or newsletter service. Do you have any? Kindly let me know in order that I may just subscribe. Thanks.

  4. Very interesting information!Perfect just what I was looking for! аЂа‹аЂ Washington is the only place where sound travels faster than light.аЂ аЂа› by C. V. R. Thompson.

  5. I’m usually to running a blog and i actually respect your content. The article has really peaks my interest. I’m going to bookmark your web site and keep checking for new information.

  6. Aw, this was a seriously nice post. In thought I would like to put in writing like this in addition – taking time and actual effort to create a very great article… but what can I say… I procrastinate alot and by no indicates appear to get some thing accomplished.

Leave a Reply