WARSAW, Poland (JTA) — A group of Warsaw residents celebrated the first day of spring by burning the effigy of a Jewish woman.
A video from last week’s incident was removed from YouTube. A Polish prosecutor reportedly will investigate the incident, the Wporst news website reported.
The recording features a group called Conscience of the Nation TV burning and drowning the effigy in the Vistula River. The puppet symbolizes what is ugly, cold and bad, the Warsaw group wrote in describing a video of the event.
“This mug [face], this big nose, so well known in Polish history,” one of the participants commented.
The custom of drowning a puppet depicting Marzanna, symbolizing winter, on the first day of spring is a popular element of Polish folklore practiced especially in small towns. Marzanna has never been connected to any national minority living in Poland.
The Center for Monitoring Racial and Xenophobic Behavior informed the local prosecutor’s office of the incident.
“During the Second World War, one of four Warsaw residents died because they were Jewish. By imitating the Nazis today you have to be either a complete idiot or the last pig. But certainly not a patriot,” the center said in a statement.
Last week, Conscience of the Nation TV had what it called an Antisemeeting.