Is Germany a friend or foe? New poll asks Polish citizens what they think of their neighbor

By Grzegorz Adamczyk
2 Min Read

A new poll from Poland asks Poles for their attitudes on Germany, and the results show the country is nearly evenly split on the question of whether Germany is a friend or foe.

The SW Research survey found that only 20 percent felt that Germany was friendly towards Poland while 23 percent said the country was hostile. However, 36 percent felt Germany harbored neutral feelings about Poland and 22 percent had no view on the matter. That means the majority of Poles either have no opinion or believe Germany is “neutral.”

Unsurprisingly, the older the voters the more likely to be skeptics of Germany. The number of voters over 50 who felt Germany was hostile to Poland was 25 percent, whereas among the 18-24 age group, it was only 11 percent. 

Polish-German relations have been affected lately by the reparations issue. Poland has published a report which quantified the losses it suffered at the hands of Germany at €1.3 trillion and has filed an official claim for compensation with German authorities. 

The actual claim Poland has submitted officially, as a diplomatic note, is broader.

It demands the return of Polish heritage that had been taken from Poland during World War II, compensation for assets seized by Germany from Polish banks, and the return of official minority status for Poles living in Germany, including covering the right to education in the Polish language.

The note also calls for measures to commemorate Polish victims of World War II in public space and for the educational curriculum in Germany to cover the German aggression and occupation of Poland. 

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