Cover

“It’s not madness, it’s a cynical tactic to destroy our state,” observes Gazeta Wyborcza in an editorial after Jarosław Kaczyński, leader of Poland’s biggest opposition party Law and Justice (PiS) accused Donald Tusk’s government of complicity in a “terrible crime” and demanded his resignation at a press conference on October 30.

Kaczyński was referring to an “explosion scenario” for the Smoleńsk air crash in which 96 Polish officials, including president Lech Kaczyński [Jarosław’s twin brother], were killed on 10 April 2010. On October 30, Warsaw daily Rzeczpospolita ran its front page suggesting that traces of TNT and nitroglycerin had been found in the wreck of the presidential plane. It later admitted that it had made a mistake after prosecutors refuted the allegations, prompting Gazeta Wyborcza to call the affair a “big dud”.

Kaczyński remained unperturbed, however, and stuck to his version of events, claiming to have “his own sources” that corroborate an explosion scenario. According to Gazeta Wyborcza columnist Mirosław Czech —

The PiS leader has shown that confronted with an easily detectable error, he can’t behave in a rational way.

Another writer for the same daily notes that

Meticulously fashioned by Law and Justice PR experts since spring, Jarosław Kaczyński’s image showing him listen with a benign smile to a debate about Poland’s future fell to pieces like a house blown up by [Rzeczpospolita’s] TNT.

Gazeta Wyborcza's editorial warns that Kaczyński wants to “overthrow Polish democracy” —

Law and Justice intends to reap the harvest of hatred it has been inciting for years. [...] Proponents of the Smoleńsk religion do not see Poland today as their own state, they nevertheless want to take power in it.