President Lech Kaczynski
For many Poles he symbolised where old meets new, and Louis Jacob reflects on the impact his death in a plane crash has had on Poland
THE burial of Polish president Lech Kaczynski last Sunday has lead to a period of intense national reflection in Poland. Kaczynski was truly the epitome of that point where old meets new. He was charismatic and divisive.
He was also the archetypal symbol of a set of values and principles many had been striving to leave behind.
Young, forward-minded Poles who have felt the wonder of change which has recently been sweeping Poland have embraced the onset of prosperity and the possibility that the new Poland represents. It remains, for instance, one of the few countries which has maintained economic growth through these hard times and, with the resulting optimism, there is a tendency to steam ahead, to revel in progress and to leave everything old and outdated behind.