Obama to Poland: Sorry About Gaffe

He regrets the death-camp error, he writes in letter to president
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 1, 2012 8:04 AM CDT
US President Barack Obama smiles as he talks with Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski during an official welcome at the presidential palace in Warsaw on May 28, 2011.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – President Obama has apologized to Poland for the "Polish death camp" gaffe he made earlier this week, the AP reports. "In referring to 'a Polish death camp' rather than 'a Nazi death camp in German-occupied Poland,' I inadvertently used a phrase that has caused many Poles anguish over the years and that Poland has rightly campaigned to eliminate from public discourse around the world," Obama wrote in a letter to Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski yesterday. "I regret the error and agree that this moment is an opportunity to ensure that this and future generations know the truth."

Warsaw has been campaigning against phrases like "Polish death camp" for years; the language offends Poles because they did not run the camps, Nazi Germany did, and many Poles actually died in such camps. Komorowski was satisfied with Obama's apology, calling the letter "a very important moment in the battle for historical truth." (Read more Poland stories.)

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