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Where the Streets Have New Names: Polish Party De-Americanizes Warsaw

A pro-Russian Polish party symbolically changed the names of the streets of Warsaw for one day, in a show of protest against the policies pursued by the United States, according to the Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza.

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The Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza reported that members of the pro-Russia Polish Party Zmiana (Change) decided to de-Americanize Warsaw for just a day by covering up street names in the Polish capital related to the United States and offering their own names instead. 

According to the Gazeta Wyborcza, the Zmiana Party posted a video documenting the move on its website, which was shot on so-called 'Anti-Presidential Day', which took place on February 15.

The footage shows the party members changing Warsaw street signs bearing the names of American politicians.

For example, a sign with the name "Wilson Square" was replaced with a sticker with the words "Square of NATO Victims." Also, "Hoover Square" was changed to "Square of Odessa killings," while "Washington Alley" was turned into 'Alley of Bombed-Out Yugoslavia."

Additionally, the party members decided to replace "the Alley of the United States" with "the Alley of Destroyed Syria," the newspaper said.

Gazeta Wyborcza quoted representatives of the Zmiana Party as saying that by carrying out the agit-prop protest they wanted "to de-Americanize public space".

On May 2, 2014, pro-Kiev radicals blocked anti-government protesters in Odesa's House of Trade Unions and set the building on fire by hurling Molotov cocktails inside. The tragic incident left some 50 people dead while the overall number of casualties exceeded 250.

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The NATO bombing of Yugoslavia was a series of air strikes launched by the alliance between March 24, 1999 and June 10, 1999.

This military operation, which was directed against Belgrade in response to alleged human rights abuses in separatist Kosovo, was conducted without the approval of the UN Security Council and claimed the lives of at least 489 civilians.

Poland's affinity for America dates back to the end of WWI, when the Polish diaspora in the United States played a significant role in prompting the re-establishment of Poland as a nation 123 years after it was partitioned out of existence by the Kingdom of Prussia, the Russian Empire and the Hapsburg Empire.

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