SESSION OF THE CPSU CC POLITBURO, 16 APRIL 1981 (EXCERPT)CITATION SHARE DOWNLOAD
get citationBrezhnev tells of his conversation with Kania. He gives his opinion on how the Soviets should proceed with regard to Poland after a meeting of the Sejm. The Politburo agrees with Brezhnev's decision to inform the leaders of the Warsaw Pact of the developments in Poland. [Original available in the National Archive RADD/READD Collection]."Session of the CPSU CC Politburo, 16 April 1981 (excerpt)" April 16, 1981, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, TsKhSD, f. 89, op. 42, d. 41, ll. 3; first published in CWIHP Special Working Paper 1. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/111891
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SESSION OF THE CPSU CC POLITBURO
16 April 1981
Cde. L. I. BREZHNEV presiding.
Also taking part: Cdes. Yu. V. Andropov, M. S. Gorbachev, V. V. Grishin,
A. A. Gromyko, N. A. Tikhonov, D. F. Ustinov,
K. U. Chernenko, P. N. Demichev, V. V. Kuznetsov,
M. S. Solomentsev, I. V. Kapitonov, M. V. Zimyanin,
K. V. Rusakov
. . . .
2. On Cde. L. I. Brezhnev's Discussion with the PZPR CC First Secretary, Cde. S. Kania (by telephone)
BREZHNEV: Yesterday I spoke by phone with Kania. Notes from the discussion
were distributed. The comrades have already looked through them, so I will be brief.
From the conversation with Kania it was clear that after the Sejm the friends were in a more upbeat mood. They had greater self-confidence. This in itself is no small thing.
But it would be impossible to overlook the fact that the situation, as before, remains
extremely difficult. The current lull is clearly only a short-term phenomenon. It was in this spirit that I, as you could see, spoke with Kania.
In general it's very important that we now maintain the right tone in our relations with our friends. On the one hand, we shouldn't badger them without need, and we should avoid making them so nervous that they throw up their hands in despair. On the other hand, we should exert constant pressure and tactfully draw their attention to the errors and weaknesses in their policy, and we should offer comradely advice about what they should do.
Comrades Andropov and Ustinov had a highly productive meeting with Kania and
Jaruzelski. This sort of practice, it would seem, should be continued until the crisis begins to subside. Perhaps we should think about holding a similar confidential meeting in the near future with the participation this time of Cdes. Suslov and Rusakov.
Our Commission, I realize, is constantly meeting and considering what should be done. They promised that they will soon offer some ideas and proposals. Along with this very important work, we must also continue preparing a broader one might say strategic analysis, which will permit us to stand back from the daily flow of events and take a longer-term perspective on the course of events in Poland and around it.
And one final thing. I wanted to ask the comrades whether it's worth informing our
closest friends about the discussion that took place. They are very alarmed by the situation in Poland, and for them it will be important to know about the actions we have taken.
If there are no objections, that's what we'll do.
ANDROPOV: The discussion was very rich in content.
CHERNENKO: During this discussion, clear and precise instructions were given to the comrades representing the PZPR leadership, and, moreover, Leonid Il'ich spoke approvingly about certain of their measures. That's very good.
USTINOV: The Polish friends received exhaustive instructions.
TIKHONOV: Now it's important that they correctly follow these instructions.
BREZHNEV: I definitely think we should inform the leaders of the other fraternal parties about this conversation with the Polish leaders.
The members of the Politburo support that proposal.
* * *
A decision is adopted:
1. To approve the telephone conversation that the CPSU CC General Secretary, Cde. Brezhnev, had with the PZPR CC First Secretary, S. Kania.
2. To consider it worthwhile to inform the leaders of other fraternal parties about the
content of the discussion, taking account of the exchange of views at the session of the CPSU CC Politburo.
3. To instruct the CC Department to prepare an informational document about this