Author facing suit over anti-Semitism book

Krakow’s public prosecutor is considering a libel suit against the American author of a book on Polish anti-Semitism.

“Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland After Auschwitz,” by Jan Tomasz Gross, has engendered serious debate in Poland about the postwar climate for Jews. The Polish edition came out Jan. 11.

Polish law mandates a three-year jail term for anyone who publicly charges the Polish nation with responsibility for the crimes of communism or National Socialism.

The prosecutor in Krakow, where Gross’ Polish publisher is based, decided to investigate “Fear” after reading press reports that “suggested the book may have broken this law,” Boguslawa Marcinkowska, a spokeswoman for the prosecutor, told the Bloomberg press agency by phone Monday.

“If proceedings begin, we may summon the author for questioning,” she said. “A decision will probably be made this week.”

The book’s distributor in Poland said the book sold out a day after its Polish edition came out. The potential lawsuit was a good thing, the distributor said, since “nothing else could have given the book such good exposure.” The English edition came out in 2006.

 

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