Polish government says no to Airbus
In a surprise move, the PiS government has cancelled the contract for the delivery of 50 French-made Caracal helicopters worth roughly 3.1 billion euros. Now Paris wants to limit military aid to Poland and President Hollande has cancelled his visit to the country. Is Warsaw snubbing a time-honoured partner or reacting to unfair treatment?
French tried to con Warsaw
Gazeta Polska Codziennie staunchly supports the Polish government's course:
“French commentators talk of France being humiliated, betrayed and stabbed in the back by Poland. … But it's interesting that Kuwait signed a contract to purchase 30 Caracal helicopters for 4.5 billion złoty [around a billion euros] in August. … In the contract the French also offer a full assistance and service package. … We don't know all the details of the contract, but according to the information available to the public Poland would pay around 80 percent more than Kuwait. So who has been humiliated, betrayed and stabbed in the back by whom here? Who is acting with evil intent? The West has shown once again that if we don't put up a fight it will treat us like a colony.”
Another diplomatic faux pas
Dziennik Gazeta Prawna, on the other hand, laments that the PiS has yet again made a fool of itself on the international stage:
“The first and most obvious conclusion here is that the government of the Law and Justice Party never misses an opportunity to provoke conflict. It always tries to get its way by screaming and banging with the hammer, so to speak. It could try smiling and using persuasive arguments instead - but that would be less visible to the public. The fact that it didn't wait until the visit was over in two weeks' time to announce its decision makes it look amateurish. Now the whole thing comes across as a direct insult and an invitation for the French to retaliate. And this is not the first diplomatic faux pas made by this leadership.”