Facebook blocked the English-language account of the Institute of National Remembrance on Feb. 6, 2021, with the social media giant reportedly indicating the ban was for a post made seven months ago concerning German crimes against Polish children and the plans for the Germanization of Polish children.
(UPDATE: Facebook has unblocked the Institute of National Remembrance’s account and said the ban was a mistake.)
“The IPN protests against censoring information on German crimes during World War II,” the institute responded to the ban in a statement.
IPN announced Facebook’s censorship of information concerning German crimes, as well as the ban, through its Polish-language Facebook account.
“Facebook has once again blocked a post by the Institute of National Remembrance regarding German crimes against Polish children. On Feb. 6, Facebook banned the English-language account of the Institute of National Remembrance. The reason was a post from seven months ago discussing German plans to Germanize Polish children.
In the banned post, we wrote about German plans to Germanize children, referring to authentic documents. Despite the submitted appeal, the account has been disabled since Saturday morning.
In fact, the current situation is similar to one from mid-January when Facebook blocked foreign promotion of the IPN’s film about the German camp in Łódź and 3,000 children imprisoned there.
The Institute of National Remembrance protests against censoring information on German crimes during World War II.”
Although there has been a wave of tech censorship targeting conservatives in recent years, usually historical pieces on the crimes committed by Nazi Germany during World War II are not controversial and not usually subject to censorship. However, this was not the first time Facebook has taken action against the institute.
The institute had recounted the crimes committed by Germans to Polish children during the war.
“During World War II, in so-called ‘Aktion Zamość’ alone, the Germans took 30,000 children from their parents, sending them to camps (including a special one in Łódź) and industrial plants in Germany. Others were handed over to German families for Germanization. The crime, one of the cruelest during World War II, was among the charges against the defendants in the Nuremberg Trials. A symbol of this operation is the fate of Czesława Kwoka, who, deported from the Zamość region, was sent to Auschwitz, where she was killed with a phenol injection. She was 14 years old.”
In the blocked post, IPN had also referred to authentic documents. Despite an appeal to verify the decision, the account remains banned.
This is not the first such action by Facebook in the last few weeks. In mid-January, Facebook blocked the ability to promote IPN’s film abroad about a German camp in Łódź to which 3,000 Polish children were sent. The film was accused of having a “political character”. When the film ban was highlighted by media, Facebook decided to unblock it.
Title image: 14-year-old Czesia Kwoka is one of the children from the Zamość region who was murdered in Auschwitz with a phenol injection into the heart, source: Auschwitz Museum.