Wake up, Poland! German-Led "EU" Before WWII?

This work, reviewed by me a few weeks ago on Amazon, focuses on Poland’s economic growth between WWI and WWII. It also shows intriguing parallels between the kind of economic hegemony pursued by Germany before launching WWII, and the European Union today.
Review of Poland Between Two Wars: A Critical Study of Economic Changes, by Dr. Ferdynand Zweig. 1944. Secker & Warburg, London
Reviewer: Mr. Jan Peczkis
Poland’s Economic Growth in the Second Republic (1918-1939); European Union Prefigured
The Partitioning powers had left Poland destitute and with very little industry. To the contrary: They had sought to suppress these developments. (p. 12).
Poland made strides in the improvement of her standard of living. The introduction of health and social services caused the rate of mortality to reach a Western level. (p. 20).
The port of Gdynia was constructed almost from scratch. Even in 1931, Gdynia took sixth place out of twelve Baltic ports. By 1938, it took first place in terms of mercantile marine traffic on the Baltic. (p. 94).
Polish agriculture largely consisted of small, patchwork quilts of land holdings that were often too small to be farmed efficiently. This caused disguised unemployment. For instance, eight adults to an agricultural holding existed even though only four were actually needed to perform the work productively.  The considerable surplus of farming labor could not be absorbed by the industrial sector, as the latter was not growing fast enough for this purpose. Emigration was a limited option.
The movement to replace the Jewish middleman with peasant cooperatives has been criticized as one that actually added to Poland’s poverty. If so, this process is understandable as a form of surgery that temporarily adds to the morbidity of the patient, but is necessary for his eventual recovery. As it turns, the problems with replacing Jews with Poles owed not to the Jew-replacing process itself, but to the manner of its implementation. Zweig characterizes the co-operative movement as one that “…grew rapidly and made impressive progress, but was too hastily organized and lacked efficiency.” (p. 126).
The State owned 93% of the railways, 70% of the iron production, etc. In 1937, 40.1% of the holdings of active joint-stock companies consisted of foreign capital. (p. 121). This was, in descending order, French, American, German, Belgian, Swiss, British, and Austrian. (p. 122). Much of this foreign ownership, notably the German, predated Poland’s reacquisition of independence in 1918.  (p. 122).
Poland’s strategy for rapid industrialization took a middle path between central and regional planning. It had some analogies with the Tennessee Valley Authority in the upgrading of a backwards area with public works, albeit with emphasis on heavy industry. (p. 77-on). It was an ambitious plan that would have left Poland completely transformed and satisfactorily industrialized in a fifteen-year period ending in 1954. (p. 79).
In 1929, the American Messrs. W. A. Harriman & Company offered to electrify Poland, down to small towns, including the construction of hydroelectric plants. However, their demand for a 60-year monopoly proved too great. Even so, this project bore fruit on a smaller scale until stopped by WWII. (p. 97).
The productivity of the Polish miner, per worker per day, grew steadily during the interwar years. By 1937, it surpassed that of its British, Belgian, French, and German counterpart. (p. 140).
On the eve of WWII, Poland made great strides in military industry. Zweig comments (quote) The munitions industry, which had been entirely absent in Poland, was developed to considerable dimensions…Two plants for the manufacture of aircraft engines were opened in Warsaw and one in Rzeszow…several factories for the production of aeroplanes were set up (at Poznan, Lublin, Biala Podlaska, and near Warsaw)… (unquote). (p. 91).
There were large-scale plans for the draining of the Polesian marshes (Pripet Marshes) and their conversion into arable land. This was to be analogous to the famous Dutch work on the Zuyder Zee. (pp. 137-139).
In the decade before launching WWII, Germany gradually increased her power over Europe through economic means. Germany’s share of the foreign trade (imports and exports) of Bulgaria, Yuguslavia, Romania, Greece, and Hungary generally doubled or trebled between 1929 and 1939. (p. 24). Zweig assessed this situation as follows, (quote) Goering, Schacht, Clodius, Funk, and other Nazi leaders began travelling from one to another of the East-Central European capitals, to detach the countries from the Western democracies.  The game was very easy to play, especially after the Great Depression, when the plight of these states was desperate and no help was forthcoming from the Western Powers…It may be frankly admitted that before the present war [WWII] Germany came very near to realizing her dream of establishing her LEBENSRAUM in “Mitteleuropa” by means of economic predominance and monopolistic exploitation. (unquote). (pp. 24-25).
The parallels with the modern European Union (EU) are striking and disturbing. Wake up, Poland!

By piotrbein