The Fall of Communism in Poland Essay

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Everyone has certain rights and with those rights come certain responsibilities which one

must fulfill in order to preserve their responsibilities. Those involved in the Polish Solidarity

Party, which began as an independent labor union, had rights and responsibilities which they

satisfied and in doing so, they created a new and improved Poland. Previous to the formation of

the Solidarity Party, the Communist regime controlled Poland. Communism, based on the ideas

and teachings of Karl Marx, is a system in which everyone is seen as equal and wealth is

distributed equally among the people. The Cold War brought Communism into Poland in 1945

and was wide-spread in Eastern Europe throughout the 20th century despite several
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These “free elections” were not truly free; they were rigged to

ensure the victory of the Communists in Poland .The Soviet Union took over and imposed

Communism in many countries during Cold War. “Poland and Eastern Europe sank behind an

‘iron fence’”. Pope John Paul II, born as Karol Józef Wojtyła, the first non-Italian Pope in over

four hundred years, was not only a great Pope, but an exceptional activist. Wojtyła had an

immense influence on the Solidarity Party and was a mortal enemy of Communism. It was

enforced in the article, “Solidarity, Pope John Paul II, and the Orange Alternative: Bringing Down Communism in Poland”:

The Pope was motivated by a belief that Catholicism and the individual conscience stood diametrically opposed to Communism's suppression of religious, economic and political freedoms, which established the state as an alternative to a higher being. He saw Christianity as an inseparable part of Poland's rich cultural history, and sought to re-establish a society where Poles could freely embrace their national and religious identity.

Barnes and Whitney wrote in their article “Pope John Paul and the Fall of Communism”,

“The Polish Communists underestimated how much Wojtyła's involvement grew—how, as his

consciousness was raised, he shaped his sermons as challenges to the regime”. Wojtyła was an

extreme advocate for human rights and “Be not afraid” became his rallying cry. Following a


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