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A Conversation
With The Honorable
Anna Maria Anders

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The greater-Washington area Polonia experienced a unique opportunity here on February 8, 2017 at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland under the auspices of Ambassador Piotr Wilczek. Anna Maria Anders, a Polish Senator and Secretary of State in the Chancellery of the Prime Minister as Government Plenipotentiary for International Dialog engaged in commentary and conversation with the intimate 80-count audience. She was here to conduct official government business on Capitol Hill and to network with Polonia on many pertinent issues, always attending as many Polish-American cultural, historical and memorial events as possible whenever visiting the U.S.

In Photo: Poland’s Plenipotentiary Envoy. The Honorable Anna Maria Anders, a Senator of the Republic of Poland, and Secretary of State in the Chancellery of the Prime Minister as Government Plenipotentiary for International Dialog, is pictured addressing the Polonia audience at the Embassy of Poland.

Secretary Anders is the daughter of the renowned World War II Polish General Wladyslaw Anders. She is a citizen of Poland, Great Britain and the United States, and still maintains a residence in Boston, MA where she lived with her late husband Robert Costa, a Colonel in the U.S. Army, and in which her son Robert now serves with the 101st Airborne Division in Iraq. For much more detailed information about Anders and her commission, please refer to “An American Face in Polish Politics” – Polish American Journal, August 2016, which is too lengthy to recount here.

DSCN0738forweb    After being warmly welcomed and introduced by Ambassador Wilczek, Minister Anders began the evening’s candid conversation with the audience by presenting an overview of the charged social, news media, and political situations in today’s Poland – “which is very similar to what is happening right now in the U.S.”

In photo: l-r Gen./Amb. Edward Rowny, Consul Gen. Zygmunt Matynia and Min. Anders conversing.

Minister Anders said that Poland is being strongly criticized in different ways by the European Union (EU) for not fully participating in accepting refugees who comprise the tidal wave of people fleeing the Middle East and elsewhere – “which is causing a huge immigration debacle and crisis in Europe.” She added that Poland is mainly focused on its “Poles in the East Program” to repatriate the descendants of the 43,000 Poles exiled East – mainly to Kazakhstan – by Poland’s Russian occupiers during World War II. A trial group has already arrived and is undergoing assimilation. Recently 300,000 Ukrainians immigrated to Poland and are now being integrating into Polish society. The very large number of marginalized and suppressed Poles marooned in Lithuania in the political aftermath and redrawn borders of World War II are also being invited back to the Polish Fatherland as immigrants.

Concerning Poland’s intense and years-long U.S. Visa Waiver quest, Minister Anders opined that “it’s been shunted by the U.S. given the present state of tumultuous world-wide events, especially noting the negative visa-free travel atmosphere generated by recent and on-going terrorist attacks in Europe and the U.S. The terrorist attacks also raise questions about mass immigration in general.

DSCN0772forweb     Given the gravity of a resurgent and menacing Russia, invited units of the U.S. Armed Forces have arrived recently onto the territory of Poland on a rotational basis. “Ideally they would eventually be stationed there on a permanent basis,” spoke Anders, who is actively lobbying key U.S. Senators for the more permanent presence. Coordinating Western NATO troops are also being welcomed by allied countries in the immediate geographic region to counterbalance the huge and ominous buildup of the bordering and restless Russian military forces.

The confident Senator-Minister Anders adroitly represented, projected and defended Poland’s ruling Law and Justice governmental policies during her initial presentation … and the always interesting Q&A session. She was much  appreciated by the applauding guests.

In photo: Ambassador Piotr Wilczek presenting floral bouquet to Min. Anders

Text & Photos:
Richard P. Poremski                    
Polish American Journal
Washington, DC Bureau