Polish magazine triggers storm with explicit anti-Muslim cover

Published: February 19, 2016
The front page of Polish weekly "W sieci" with the title "Islamic rape of Europe" on February 18, 2016 PHOTO: AFP

The front page of Polish weekly "W sieci" with the title "Islamic rape of Europe" on February 18, 2016 PHOTO: AFP

WARSAW: A right-wing Polish magazine cover emblazoned with the headline “The Islamic rape of Europe” triggered a storm of criticism on social media Thursday, with some comments comparing it to World War II fascist propaganda.

The cover of the news weekly “w Sieci” (In the net) showed a posed photo of a blue-eyed blonde woman, wrapped in an EU flag, looking terrified as she is groped by hairy-armed men.

German probe blames migrants for New Year’s Eve violence

The magazine said the cover referred to a rash of sexual assaults against hundreds of women, allegedly by men of North African and Arab origin, during New Year’s Eve celebrations in the German city of Cologne.

But the publication drew fierce criticism on Twitter, with one user comparing it to what they described as a World War II-era Italian fascist propaganda poster vilifying Africans.

Another Twitter user said the “sick cover” was fear-mongering.
“‘Islamic rape of Europe’, screams Polish magazine. They obviously forget Nazi depictions of Poles in the 1930s,” said one Twitter user.

“w Sieci” makes no secret of its support for the Poland’s new right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) government.

At the end of 2015, it had a circulation of 76,000, a decline of 1.16 per cent over 2014, according to the specialist website press.pl.

In the category of news weeklies, it lay a distant third, with the top-selling title, Newsweek Polska, selling 120,000.

Two Pakistanis, Syrian man injured in gang attacks in Cologne

The populist PiS won an unprecedented majority in October’s general election campaigning, among others, on an anti-migrant platform.

Party leader and ex-premier Jaroslaw Kaczynski played up migrant fears before election day by claiming refugees were bringing “cholera to the Greek islands, dysentery to Vienna, various types of parasites” in comments that critics said recalled the Nazi era.

The PiS government has been among the staunchest opponents of an European Union quota plan to distribute refugees across the bloc.
Surveys show a majority of Poles share this view.

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Reader Comments (34)

  • Pakistan Zindabad
    Feb 19, 2016 - 11:02AM

    This is not the Propaganda. They believe it by heart. And they are blind by faith to see Muslim Victims.Recommend

  • jay
    Feb 19, 2016 - 1:41PM

    Europe is doomed soon their will be demand for Shriah or sperate space for worships etc etc, Recommend

  • Sara weis
    Feb 19, 2016 - 1:42PM

    @Pakistan Zindabad: I don’t think so. 9 out of 10 Islamic immigrants see women as sex objects. I have experienced it my self. Please sort out the mess back home and return to your countries. Pakistanis please go back. We are tired of you.Recommend

  • XY
    Feb 19, 2016 - 2:20PM

    @Jay “Europe is doomed soon their will be demand for Shriah or sperate space for worships etc etc”

    Going by your logic India would be doomed much before the Europe, no ? Recommend

  • indian
    Feb 19, 2016 - 4:07PM

    India is already doomed for allowing the pakistanis to stay back even after they demanded and got separate homeland for themselves.Recommend

  • Syedpk
    Feb 19, 2016 - 7:07PM

    @Sara weis,

    I dont know where to begin.

    1. Get geography lesson, Pakistanis are not that great in numbers in Europe, and what you far rights are worried about right now is Arabs (Syrian and Iraqis) and North Africans. You dont even know who you are hating.

    2. Second get current affairs lesson, its middle easterns and north Africans along with Afghans who are currently migrating and giving you headache , with a really minute no of Pakistanis, which is almost negligible.

    I live in Europe have traveled through the whole continent (atleast the EU side), Right wings fascists like you are really small in numbers so stop pretending that you and your mindset represents majority of Europeans.

    @ Pakistan Zindabad,

    You are no different than the European right wingers.Recommend

  • Ahad
    Feb 19, 2016 - 7:14PM

    Poland knows better about its rapidly declining population (highest in EU).

    Syrians are hamites. They are the suitable alternative to replenish population levels with Indo Europeans without major home grown fertility movements.

    Tech them and integrate them to build Poland.Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Feb 19, 2016 - 7:22PM

    British empire also doomed when they allowed Indians to stay back even after they demanded and got homeland for themselves.Recommend

  • Acorn Guts
    Feb 19, 2016 - 8:49PM

    The thing that I really find offensive about this cover is how they’ve used ‘rape’ so insensitively. I’m willing to ignore Islamophobic aspect of the cover but rape is a step too far. They should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.Recommend

  • HZR
    Feb 19, 2016 - 9:39PM

    The magazine has depicted what happened on the streets of cologne…Recommend

  • Anonymous
    Feb 19, 2016 - 10:01PM

    XY “Going by your logic India would be doomed much before the Europe, no ? ”

    India is a gone case. Nehru and Gandhi destroyed India when they let these people stay back in India. I won’t be surprised if Sharia is implemented in some parts of India. However, Europe can still reverse this systematic rot before it gets irreversible.Recommend

  • sterry
    Feb 19, 2016 - 10:40PM

    @Sara weis: You probably already know that most of the illegal refugees are not Pakistani but rather Arabs, Afghans, Iranians and Somalis who are fleeing unrest in their countries. The Europeans have decided to reward those who choose to get there via human smugglers illegally by giving them asylum instead of checking genuine refugees in Africa and Burma. This hypocrisy bothers many people in need who don’t have thousands of dollars to ay human smugglers to get into Europe. Now that large groups of Arab men were groping and raping Western women in Germany and other parts of Europe, the Europeans are back tracking since they see problems in integrating people with different cultural values. The situation would be worse with the same number of Indian men smuggling to Europe. After all India is known as the rape capital of the world. Try to understand the problem and not just spew your Indian propaganda.Recommend

  • faisal
    Feb 19, 2016 - 11:13PM

    Europe is not duty bound to take in, feed and clothe illegal immigrants. They should go to muslim countries. Why isn’t saudis accepting them?Recommend

  • ali2k5
    Feb 19, 2016 - 11:24PM

    @Sara weis:
    It is not in our faith to disrespect women … but in other school of thought or perception or point of veiw … feminists see men as sex object … what are ur thoughts about it ??Recommend

  • 3rdRockFromTheSun
    Feb 19, 2016 - 11:27PM

    It may be racist, but I am sorry – it does represent the feeling the average European has, which are based on confirmed and verified recent events.

    Both parties are at fault – the Europeans for their naivety in opening their borders without thinking the whole thing through in realizing the social and demographic impact of the sudden surge of migrants; and those “economic” refugees (not those whose lives are in mortal danger in their home countries due to the Syrian conflict) who flock to Europe illegally just too seek a better life.

    Truth as they say hurts! I say this as a South Asian immigrant to North America – and I immigrated the legal way.Recommend

  • True
    Feb 20, 2016 - 12:20AM

    @Sara weis: why don’t you stay away Pakistan and its matters… why are you poking your miserable nose into a Pakistani news portal??? Just stay away from us…Recommend

  • G. Din
    Feb 20, 2016 - 12:41AM

    It is a depiction of what happened in Cologne. It is based on real life incidents. How can anyone object to it?Recommend

  • Parvez
    Feb 20, 2016 - 1:14AM

    When an irresponsible media exploits a ‘ situation ‘ to increase sales ( as is quite apparent here ) …….. the down side to this is usually not considered but it is far more potent than the temporary increase in sales of the publication. Recommend

  • Acorn Guts
    Feb 20, 2016 - 1:18AM

    @Sara weis: I doubt that our return to our homeland would satisfy your intolerance. Once we leave there will be problem with other nationalities until it’s just the natives who remain and then they’ll start judging natives by how many generations they’ve been around. I’m sorry for your bad experiences but let me assure you it’s not 9 out of 10 Pakistani men who are bad, it is 1 out of 10 like with any nationality.Recommend

  • Woz ahmed
    Feb 20, 2016 - 1:43AM

    The cover is disturbing and insulting.

    For some reason liberal papers like dawn & et have ignored the cases in the UK of Pakistanis involved in ‘grooming’ . Like any crime only a percentage is ever caught , but the number of cases in the UK is disturbing.Recommend

  • Noah A Lefevre
    Feb 20, 2016 - 5:52AM

    @Sara weis: Your problem is ignorance and that’s an incurable disease. Even reading your letter is an insult to intelligence. Were you an educated and intelligent person, your perspective about humanity would be absolutely different. Get a life and wisdom if you can!Recommend

  • wb
    Feb 20, 2016 - 11:01AM

    @Noah A Lefevre:

    Actually, everything you said about Sara is untrue. But everything you said about Sara holds absolutely well to you and your ilk.Recommend

  • SHAH
    Feb 20, 2016 - 11:37AM

    @Sara weis:
    In the 1930s Poland was the start of extremism and the real cause of unrest which created the conditions for Europe to go to the extreme of killing each other.. You think you are better than others and some sort of supreme humans, and others are criminals?? what you showed on Mag covers; At that time you and Europe targeted the Jews and now the Muslims.. Its okay, we know, once again you are doomed; and you are trying to find a scapegoat in Pakistanis.. Its okay again, as you dont know Pakistanis and their capabilities.. and mix them with some who may be sore for you. We thank you for targetting Pakistanis as you did the Jews; you know what Jews are today and what they can do to you and your Polish dented mind. You have picked Pakistanis because they are dominant and visible due to their hard work and tireless efforts; that is what is bothering you..; Pakistanis are, hardworking and very clear minded people focusing on their objectives.. time will tell.. as some in our neighborhood will and shall be taught.. in very short time, soon. Time has come that Pakistan and will dominate, technologically and economically countries like Poland who try to grow bigger than their shoes..So, please with kind words, dont be mentally retarded and blind to the reality and wake up, stop dreaming; The sooner you do the better for you Poles; you shall be woken and shall put in your rightful place; History does not and cannot be erased, and Poles know what happened in the past and will happen again, if you keep dreaming what you now are, reflecting your mind on magazines. Still there is time, and repair the damage you are incurring. Peace, love and harmony is the key and better for all of us, you and me, and we must work towards it. Recommend

  • Factnotfiction
    Feb 20, 2016 - 2:46PM

    @Sara weiss, tell your people to leave “Israel”. Its one rule for the Joden, and another for everyone else. You think you are a superior race of people. If it wasn’t for the ancestors of todays “Pakistanis” your people wouldn’t have a homeland (The army that captured Jerusalem under Allenby contained Punjabi muslims), and in WW2 the ancestors of those who are now “pakistanis” fought in virtually every theatre of war.

    ET if you value freedom of speech, the let this comment through. Recommend

  • Lafanga
    Feb 20, 2016 - 3:43PM

    What can you tell us about the Pakistani culture in Rochdale, England, If you are not aware, just google and get enlightened..Recommend

  • hari
    Feb 20, 2016 - 5:28PM

    Precise depiction of ground reality in Europe.Recommend

  • Sara Weis2
    Feb 20, 2016 - 9:41PM

    Sara Weis is Indian troll. See the count.Recommend

  • Meep
    Feb 21, 2016 - 3:45AM


    Can’t you guys spit venom at Pakistanis from TOI or something?Recommend

  • Mostly Bull
    Feb 21, 2016 - 7:53AM

    @ “The situation would be worse with the same number of Indian men smuggling to Europe….”

    Indian men are NOT smuggling themselves/being smuggled into Europe in comparable numbers as those from the Land of Pure…(some Purity now…ain’t it?….)…..

    In a hypothetical situation that they do, don’t see how it would make the situation ‘worse’….!!!
    mate, it can’t get much worse..unless the lot of you in LoP decide to make for Europe lock, stock and the nuculear barrel included……!!!!!!

    Go on then….and good luck…!!!! you might want to check with Ibrahim and Hafeez first….!!! very experienced Eurapists …those two…..!!!!Recommend

  • Feb 21, 2016 - 3:16PM

    Pakistani Mullahs love such magazine cover.Recommend

  • Alll
    Feb 22, 2016 - 2:47AM

    Why all the Muslims seek asylum in Europe?Recommend

  • buba
    Mar 31, 2016 - 12:29AM

    We have large population of Vietnamese people in Warsaw they don’t give us problems, they respect us and our culture, they don’t treat women like sex obejects. And we will welcome people like Vietnamese with great appreciation, because they respect culture of the host, they integrate really well. So yes we will tkae migrants, but we will not take muslim migrants, we can choose who we take in.Recommend

  • Ahad
    Mar 31, 2016 - 5:18PM

    @buba: Sure, you have right to say who goes amd comes in your country, but you have also every right to re-read what I wrote. Recommend

  • Hert
    Jul 9, 2016 - 1:23AM

    “blue-eyed blonde woman” woman’s eyes are closed.

    it’s also an odd choice considering how right leaning groups usually say rape victims were at fault and if a woman was raped wearing just a flag they definitely would have said she was asking for it. shameful.Recommend

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