Polish skinheads attack Russian diplomats' children in Warsaw

The teenagers were going back home from a movie theatre when a bus stopped nearby

We are already accustomed to the frequent news about Russian skinheads, now and then attacking dark-skinned students and people coming from Asia and Caucasus region. However, the skinheads may even attack Muscovites, whose nationality or appearance they do not like. According to the recent sociological surveys the actions of Russian fascists are to a certain degree approved by 30-40 percent of the population, with or without reservations. There must be some hope that the recent events in Poland will make at least some of these 40 percent change their minds…

A group of skinheads attacked Russian schoolchildren aged 16 to 17 at approximately 9 p.m. local time in Warsaw two days ago. The incident took place very late at night in one of the city's parks. The teenagers were going back home from a movie theatre when a bus stopped nearby. Fifteen skinheads got off the bus quickly. The leader aged 25-27 especially stood out.

The riff-raff started beating the schoolchildren without explanations. They stroked them down to the ground and started kicking them. Having checked the schoolchildren's documents to identify their nationality, Russians, the skinheads went on doing their business with vengeance. The ruffians took the schoolchildren's money and mobile phones. After that they got back to the bus in an orderly manner and went away.

According to the numerous mass-media reports and news agencies, there were witnesses watching the beating of the Russians, whose statement then made it possible to reconstruct the events quickly. But none of them stuck up for the children…

The schoolchildren, of whom there were three boys from Russia and one from Kazakhstan, received brain concussion and are at the hospital at the moment. Investigators hope that they will be able to answer some questions in the nearest future.

Meanwhile, the Warsaw police have already detained two people suspected of attacking the teenagers. The details of the arrest as well as the identity of the suspects are still to be reported.

Yesterday morning the consul of the Russian embassy in Warsaw, Vladimir Efremov, was interviewed by the “Echo of Moscow” radio station in connection with the incident. He claimed that such incidents were not rare, “not only in regard to the children of our employees but to foreign citizens as well, including Russians.”

He admitted that such incidents in regard to Russians have taken place before but were not capturing headlines. What makes Polish skinheads so active? Why do we draw so many parallels, comparing the Poles with their Russian "colleagues?"

One of the versions says that Polish skinheads first appeared among punks, the latter then becoming their major rivals in “ritual” fights. At first the activity of the young Nazis was coming down to provoking troubles at the rock gigs and football matches. Afterwards they moved into the street – they would beat everybody who differed in color of their skin, hair or clothes.

About two years ago the youth branch of the Nazi movement “Self Defense” (“Samoobrona”) was formed. By different estimates it incorporates many thousands of young people, thoroughly selected. According to those who left “Self Defense”, the idols of the movement were Stalin, Hitler, Ceausescu, and Franco. The “Self Defense” leader, Andrzej Lepper, might well have pretensions of a sort of a Polish “Fuhrer.”

The results of the sociological research do not look promising. According to the Institute of Sociology of the Warsaw University, every fourth person of African, Asian or Arab origin has suffered from aggression during his visit to Poland. As far as the birthday of Fuhrer is concerned, the Polish police are made especially alert on this day.

Igor Parfinenko

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Author`s name Olga Savka