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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 13, 1981

SHORTHAND RECORD OF THE MEETING OF THE EXECUTIVE POLITICAL COMMITTEE OF THE CC OF THE RCP

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    Discussion in the Romanian Politburo of the situation in Poland and the declaration of Martial Law.
    "Shorthand Record of the Meeting of the Executive Political Committee of the CC of the RCP," December 13, 1981, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, ANIC, Fund CC of the RCP - Chancellery, File No. 101/1981, ff. 2-15.] Translated by Delia Razdolescu. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/111802
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Shorthand Record of the Meeting of the Executive Political Committee of the CC of the RCP December 13, 1981
Shorthand Record

Participants: Comrades Nicolae Ceausescu, Iosif Banc, Emil Bobu, Cornel Burtica, Virgil Cazacu, Elena Ceausescu, Lina Ciobanu, Nicolae Constantin, Constantin Dascalescu, Ion Dinca, Janos Fazekas, Ludovic Fazekas, Cornelia Filipas, Alexandrina Gainuse, Petre Lupu, Paul Niculescu, Gheorghe Oprea. Gheorghe Pana, Ion Patan, Dumitru Popescu, Gheorghe Radulescu, Aneta Spornic, Ilie Verdet, Stefan Andrei, Emilian Dobrescu, Nicolae Giosan, Suzana Gâdea, Ion Ionita, Ana Muresan, Constantin Olteanu, Cornel Onescu, Ioan Ursu, Richard Winter.
Invited to participate in the meeting, comrades: Marin Enache, George Homostean, Tudor Postelnicu, Eugen Florescu.

Comrade Nicolae Ceasescu:
Comrades, we wished to gather in this meeting in connection with the events taking place in Poland; Bîrlea, read these texts.

Comrade Stefan Bîrlea:
AFP transmits: The state of war was declared in Poland at 23:00 GMT, 24:00 local time, announced general Jaruzelski. He announced also the arrest of the extremist "Solidarity" leaders and of other members of illegal organizations, who will be delivered for Court Martial. The measure was adopted by the Military Council of National Salvation, specified Jaruzelski, in an address made during the six o'clock news, broadcast by the national radio station. Also arrested were "the persons responsible for the mistakes made in the "70s, namely, former first secretary Edward Gierek, former rime minister Piotr Jaroszewicz, as well as Zdzislav Grudzien, Jerzy Lukaszevicz, Jan Szydlak and T. Wrzazsczky", former members of the Political Bureau, who will be delivered for Court Martial.

The forces of order occupied at 4:00 GMT, 3:00 local time, the Warsaw section of the "Solidarity" independent trade union and arrested one of its leaders, Krystof Sliwinski, the leader of the international section of the trade union in Warsaw. Scores of cars with militiamen, military cares of the army and common vehicles filled with uniformed troops patrol the streets of the capital city. All phone and telex connections had been abruptly interrupted at 23:00 local time.
At the same time, AFP transmits further that General Jaruzelski declared on Sunday, in a radio-broadcasted message, that Poland should solve the crisis with its own forces, apparently excluding by this appeal a Soviet intervention. "We are a sovereign country. We must get out of this crisis by our own efforts, said the Polish prime minister. Addressing Poland's "allies and friends", he stressed that "the Polish-Soviet alliance will remain the crucial element" of Warsaw's policy. General Jaruzelski addressed international public opinion asking for understanding and added: "Our action does not endanger anybody".

General Jaruzelski asked the soldiers to be faithful to their oath of allegiance, stating: "The fate of the country depends on your attitude". He also asked the militia "to defend the country against the enemy" and the workers to give up to their imprescriptible right to go on strike so as to allow the country to overcome the crisis".

In a dramatic appeal addressed to the men and women of Poland, whom he called his brothers and sisters, general Jaruzelski demanded that no drop of Polish blood should be shed and everything possible should be done to avoid a civil war.

General Jaruzelski's message, read with a grave and sad voice, was preceded and followed by the national anthem. The Polish radio station gave no futher information and broadcasts Chopin music.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
This is about all the information we have got up to this hour. What else do you have?

Comrade Tudor Postelnicu:
Comrade General Secretary, may I report that besides the information supplied immediately by the Polish ambassador, he transmitted that they have no radio connection and he would ask us to listen only the communiqués broadcast by "Radio Warsaw", I repeat, "Radio Warsaw", and he will receive instructions today on the way he should act.

Moreover, compared with the other press agencies (TASS), "France Press" confirms that the Soviet radio and television system interrupted its programs and broadcast officially that the "state of war" had been declared in Poland. There is however, controversy, as some have announced the "State of war", "state of emergency" and others called it "state of urgency".

Anyway, there are problems which have been announced officially.

Comrade Constantin Olteanu:
Comrade General Secretary, may I report that besides the broadcast news, an announcement was made that in some districts, in central institutions, executive positions had been taken over by military commissars. At the same time, it was announced that, US Secretary of State Haig, on a tour in several countries, interrupted his visit and contacted the foreign ministers of England, the Federal Republic of Germany and France, to take council with them on the positions to be adopted vis-à-vis the events in Poland.

An announcement was also made that the town of Gdansk is isolated, not only due to interruption of phone connections, but in all other respects.

Comrade Stefan Bîrlea:
A "TASS" agency statement was also received, reading:
Speaking over the radio on December 13, in the morning, W. Jaruzelski, first-secretary of the Central Committee of P.U.W.P., chairman of the Council of Ministers, Minister of Defense of the Polish People's Republic, announced that because of the anarchy threatening the country, of the irresponsible actions perpetrated by the extremist forces of the "Solidarity", striving openly to seize power, announced that by decree of the State Council of the Polish People's Republic, the state of war was instituted in the country as of December 13, at 00:00 hours.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
This is how they also declared the "State of war"!

Comrade Stefan Bîrlea:
The TASS statement reads further: The Military Council for National Salvation was created and commissars were appointed to control the activity of the state administration bodies - from ministries down to communes. The commissars are also entitled to discharge from office the persons who are not fulfilling their duty.

The decision was made to intern the "Solidarity extremist leaders and the members of illegal anti-Socialist organizations. A group of persons responsible for the social, political and economic crisis in Poland have also been interned. Gierek, Jaroszewicz, Grudzien, Szydiak and others are among them.

W. Jaruzelski said that the Party and the Government are consistently working for the creation of the Front of National Consensus, for the union of all the people's patriotic forces in the name of the salvation of Poland.

He called for the creation of calm in the country, for the normal functioning of the national economy, for the re-establishment of trust in and respect for the state bodies of power.

W. Jaruzelski made an appeal for unity in the ranks of the Party, the leading force in society, which is consistent units pronouncement of the consolidation and further construction of socialism in Poland.

He emphasized that the Polish people highly appreciated the friendship with the Soviet Union and with other countries of the socialist community, and their fraternal aid. Poland, said W. Jaruzelski, would remain an indestructible link of the socialist community.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Let's wait and see what else happens - in fact, I wanted to have this problem discussed at the Tuesday meeting of the Executive Political Committee - I would like to read here some of my considerations on Poland, expressed in may talks with Sergei Kraiger, Lionel Jospin and Bettino Craxi.

The material is not yet prepared - I wanted to have one more look at it - it is reproduced from the respective shorthand records, but it is interesting as it enables us to agree on certain points of view.

Comrade Stefan Bârlea:
The problems related to the situation in Poland are complicated indeed. It's hard to say how things came to this. The causes which created this situation and numerous are complicated, because, they are linked, partially, to Poland's history and traditions, to that fact that in one form or the other, these traditions and history have not been taken into account.

Economic problems have been really a pretense because the situation in Poland was quite good economically. Several mistakes have been made in Poland, of course, but have been obtained very good results in socialist development and in the economy, in general. But over the last year the situation has not improved; on the contrary, it has worsened. One could not say that we witnessing some protest against socialist construction and against the forms of socialist construction in Poland. I would say that the Polish United Workers' Party has distorted certain socialist principles, including of the principles of Party organization and in this lies a certain estrangement from the working class, a fact one can see in the past composition of Party bodies, of the Party itself, which has neglected to take the necessary measures for the strengthening of the organizational force in the ranks of the working class. This made possible the penetration of the Party by petty bourgeois, intellectual elements, people with a petty bourgeois mentality, alien, in fact, to the working class, which caused the lack of unity, of conception, of clear orientation in the Party.

At the same time, one cannot ignore the existence of some forces that have never chimed with socialism, and here comes first the Catholic Church, which lies, in fact, at the origins and is the initiator of that movement which became "Solidarity". The action started with religious services. The "Solidarity" Congress opened, in fact, with a service in the Cathedral.

Anti-socialist forces have long existed in Poland, which have organized themselves, and against which the Polish Party and State have not taken any measures, but tolerated them instead.
Important concessions have been made to the Catholic Church, which play a clear reactionary role. By the election of a Pope, in the person of a Pole, the very activity of these elements from the ranks of the Catholic Church has been stimulated.

The Polish leadership encouraged to a certain degree this state of affairs and even considered that half of the Vatican was theirs when the Pope was elected in the person of a Polish citizen.
In our opinion, this constellation of factors triggered the events that have taken place. "Solidarity" is in fact the outcome of the activity of all those factors and, first of all, of the Catholic Church that had a decisive role and under whose patronage "Solidarity" was born. This proves that it is not a working-class organization, but a class, Catholic organization, combined with many anti-Socialist elements, who, due to the mistakes made by the Party, were able to influence a certain part of the working class in Poland.

If we analyze what has been said at the "Solidarity" Congress, we see that political problems come first, including of those related to the national feeling, which has always been very strong in the Poles.

All through the post-war period, the Polish Party and State have neglected the national feeling of the Poles. The Polish Party and State, instead of being the representative of the national feeling - understood correctly, not in a narrow nationalist sense, but as a socialist and democratic feeling of the people - have been neglectful of that feeling and this carelessness was exploited by the Catholic Church, by the reactionary forces in Poland. The Church assumed the right to be the representative of the national feeling of the Poles. Hence, it is necessary for the Party, for the Polish state to pay due attention to the feelings, to the problems of national, cultural and historical interest and to ensure that they - the Party and the Government - become the representatives of these concerns, of these feelings and that they take this weapon from the hands of the Catholics and of the "Solidarity".

I have mentioned all this to make clearer the special nature of the situation in Poland. Of course, this cannot justify the facts, but it points out the fact that certain traits of the socialist society, the traditions have been ignored, that the history and the traditions of the Polish people have not been taken into account.

Starting from this situation, we think it necessary, first and foremost, that the Party should focus its attention on the working class, should strengthen its ranks within the working class and base its policy on the working class, on the peasantry.

Little has been done in this direction. A few steps have been taken to approach the workers, but, in my opinion, this is insufficient. To tell you what we think about it, off the record, we think that Poland, and not only Poland, should have had, under the present circumstances, at the helm of the Party, an activist come from the ranks of the workers.

I have to tell you that at the meeting held last December, we insisted on the fact that we should rely on the working class and that the Party should become, at the same time, the representative of the people's national feeling.

Of course, we have also believed that the Poles themselves should solve their own problems, that things should not go as far as an intervention from outside. Such an intervention would complicate even more the situation both in Poland and internationally. It is no less true that through the agency of some elements, a rather strong foreign support has been given to the creation of the existing situation, to the development of "Solidarity". At the same time, I say that the activity carried out abroad does not justify in any way what has happened in Poland. The Polish leadership is to be blamed. But now the problem is not to encourage in any way from the outside and not to support those elements that question the building of socialism and Poland's alliances, because this would mean to push it to an internal confrontation with possibly very serious consequences.

The Poles should look for solutions by themselves; agreement among themselves will ensure socialist development and help them to find democratic forms of leadership likely to meet the demands of the people's masses and not give only the impression, but create the pre-requisites for the participation of the Poles in leadership. I have the impression that some measures have already begun to be taken, including of measures concerning self-management. But the Party and the Polish State should act more firmly, with greater determination, in the direction I have mentioned.

We think that things are still complicated. The State, the Party have made, nevertheless, too many concessions to the anti-Socialist forces in Poland and, now, they must recognize their positions. Of course, we should add also the questions of educational, political, ideological work, with everything that they imply. We do not believe that, under the present circumstances, a good solution for Poland would be a national union with "Solidarity". Thus union should be done with the workers, with the peasants, not with "Solidarity".

Time is too short to examine now, and nobody has examined yet, not even the Poles, how all this was possible. And it would be difficult for us to examine it for them. These are only a few aspects of what we know already. We have always had good relations with Poland. Among other things, in 1939, when Poland was divided between Hitler and Stalin, the Polish Army, or what was left of it, passed through the territory of Romania. Even the present chairman of the Council of Ministers passed through Romania as a simple officer of the army. But, starting from this point, the Poles should be left to solve their problems by themselves. They try now to accommodate themselves with "Solidarity", but "Solidarity" should not be encouraged to seek an internal confrontation because it might lead to a very serious situation.

The problem presents itself thus: what is the ideological basis of the "Solidarity" movement?
I was and I am an old trade-union member. I have been a trade-union member for 50 years. The intervention of the Church in the trade-union movement has always had a clearly reactionary nature. It is difficult to accept the idea that, under the present circumstances, the Catholic Church may become a progressive force in the trade-union movement, since it has never been that. The more so now.

Therefore, starting from the ideological basis of this movement - and Walesa has never made it a secret that he is financed by the Catholic Church and that he has got the blessing of the Pope - we should have seen its nature. It is difficult to speak of a movement that aims at improving and perfecting socialist development. One cannot build up socialism with the Cross! And even the first bourgeois-democratic revolutionists said this. We must always have in view palpable situations and, therefore, I said that one should take into account the realities in Poland, the strong influence of the Catholic Church, as well as the fact the "Solidarity" knew how to take advantage of the Poles' national feeling; Communist Party did not take advantage, but ignored this feeling.

This state of affairs has not been understood by the Poles, that is, they did not understand that they had to carry on a political, organizational activity; I do not mean administrative measures, as such problems cannot be solved in an administrative way. They are very complex problems. To appreciate a social movement, we should see its positions and who is supporting it. Only then shall we be able to understand better the nature of each action of the respective movement.
In Poland there are numerous problems to be solved. It is obvious that there existed a well-arranged plan for the destabilization of the economy in Poland. This situation was not created accidentally; as of last July, systematic actions have taken place to destabilize economic life in Poland. The Party and the Government should focus first and foremost on the resumption of economic activity, the introduction of order, of discipline in production, as a pre-requisite of Poland's further development in the socialist way. As a matter of fact, coal production decreased by 60 million tons. Were this output exported at an official price - and coal is in demand on the market - Poland would have sufficient financial means to pay its debts in 3-4 years and ensure its economic development.

The problem is that the Poles should start working, since without working nobody can make a living. Poland has other riches besides coal, it has a quite good industry able to play, as well, an important part.

I would like to mention among other things the a year ago we said in Moscow, at the meeting which took place there, that the situation of Polish agriculture is the outcome of a mistaken agrarian policy, namely the encouragement of private property and the neglect of the socialist sector in agriculture. This had a negative effect on economy, in general, and on the population's supply with the necessary products.

There are problems of leadership, of creating the democratic framework, of the participation of the masses in the leadership of society; the problem of democratizing the economy and the state is, too, a pre-requisite of socialist development.

At the same time, at the Moscow meeting, we insisted very much on these problems. The reply to the actions of "Solidarity" should consist of the creation of workers' councils in enterprises, the participation of the workers in the management of economic activity from top to bottom, and from bottom to top.

This is how we regard the problems in Poland.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
These are excerpts - as I already said - from three shorthand reports; my talks with Kraigher, with Jospin and Craxi. Of course, I did not manage to see the material; we want to put the finishing touches to it and to discuss it on Tuesday in the meeting of the Executive Political Committee.

I think, comrades, that we should give the Party some guidelines concerning the situation in Poland. Now, of course, there are new problems, but these are the general considerations. And, as far as I am informed, the French and Italian socialists have appreciated this thing; they even discussed it together and said that the problem has been approached correctly. Therefore, I insisted with both of them on these problems.

Comrade Janos Fazekas:
You acted well.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
Craxi himself said that the Pope was directly concerning himself with Poland and had met in Rome with the leaders of the Catholic Church.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Of course, we shall wait and see the developments in Poland.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
I spoke with comrade ambassador in Warsaw and he reported to me that at 9 o'clock, that is 10 o' clock in Romania, Comrade Jaruzelski convened them for a briefing on this problem.
Secondly, he told me that people in Warsaw are walking in the streets, normally, there is no bustle; just quietness and calm.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
You spoke on the phone.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
Yes; we have direct "TO" (operational) connections with embassies.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
They probably cut phone connections between private citizens.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
To be sincere, Poles are used to it, they like it.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
They could live without it, they would not feel comfortable without it…!

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
They are probably nor surprised, as they were not at work. But let us see what they will tell the ambassadors.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
They caught all of them in Gdansk; they were all there because they wanted to organize a big demonstration on December 17.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
The quiet is anyway only apparent, merely superficial.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
The "Solidarity" people were in Gdansk?

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Sure.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
In fact, they intended to catch them in Gdansk and now, they are isolating them. As a matter of fact, they have now installed military commissars too.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
The problem will arise tomorrow, when work is resumed; they do not have problems in the streets. Anyway, they started it too late…!

Comrade Ilie Verdet:
These problems are older.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
And not only these problems; in fact, everything happening in Poland of late has contributed to this situation.

Comrade Ilie Verdet:
Sure; it is difficult to say all this now; they started by arresting those people, saying that they were guilty.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
It's a political measure.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
I think they are settling some political accounts! They fear a reorganization of forces, of the Party because they lost a lot of confidence and older activists, communists are trying - according to our information - to reconstruct the Party on healthy bases and they want to prevent them doing this too. This confirms also the measures taken against some old activists.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
These are known facts.

Comrade Ilie Verdet:
Our Party active should also know those things.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
However, there is no state of war.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
Rather a "military state"; maybe the translation was not good.

Comrade Constantin Olteanu:
May I report, Comrade General Secretary. The Polish Constitution does not contain the notion of "state of emergency" and "state of necessity". They have only "state of war".

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
So, this is the explanation for this "state of war"!

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Yes, their Constitution stipulates only the "state of war". They declared that they "make an appeal to the union of the people and the building up of socialism in Poland". They have the right to do anything.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
Of course, they have this right; they even appointed military commissars.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
They also created the Military Council. The Plenary Meeting of the Polish United Workers' Party, which took place recently, decided to confer exceptional powers to the State Council; the decree was approved by the plenum of the Central Committee of the Party.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
In fact, at that plenary meeting they announced firmer, more drastic measures and even exceptional measures, which are to be taken.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
So, these are almost all the problems. Let's see what they are going to say. It doesn't seem that they thought, for the moment being, of asking for help. Of course, it depends on the developments. We should follow them!

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
From the statement one understands clearly that they want to solve the problems by themselves and it would be well if they did it.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Were they to ask for help, they would ask for support, first of all, at home.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
Absolutely, and from the army.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
At the present moment, the army is the only force there, so they keep it in the forefront.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
We had a delegation there recently, and people seemed afraid to speak. People were timorous.

Comrade Ludovic Fazekas:
You said that they did not know how they might resist any longer.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
These are the problems for the time being. Let's see the developments.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
The comrades will fetch immediately the material communicated by our ambassador.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
We must see the official statements.

It's clear that things were going from bad to worse. Therefore they took firmer measures. They wanted to force matters.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
You are refering to "Solidarity".

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Sure!

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
They even offered them the possibility of organizing themselves, and in the press, to disorganize Party life.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
They created their own center in Gdansk.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
They have much greater difficulties now than they would have had if they did things well from the very beginning!

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
They took some measures, but cut them short.

Comrade Janos Fazekas:
Instead on focusing on counterattacks, they deall with other problems.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
They sent there, nevertheless, an armed force.

Comrade Janos Fazekas:
With money from the West.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
And the reviews they published in thousands of copies.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
In the Party, there was the idea that they should change the situation, and yet on the other hand they encouraged the others.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
If they don't draw political conclusions, they will not be able to solve these problems. Of course, they will manage to bring order, but if they do not draw political conclusions concerning their position, their political and educational activity, they won't be able to do anything, for, in fact, the great majority of their activists agreed with "Solidarity". They thought that with "Solidarity" they might compel the Soviets to draw conclusions and state their position. But this is not the way to solve things! Even if they draw conclusions, they will have to wait a few years, because there are still basic problems unsolved by Polish society. And - as I have already said - the Catholic Church uses them against the Party. In fact, it was not the Party that represented Poland, but the Church.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
Catholicism in Poland is very strong. They will face quite complicated problems.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
They will take measures; they will close the factories, the schools and they will have no problems. Actually, all this problem is closely linked to history.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
They were wrong anyway!

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
When one talks with them, they say "no", and publicly they say another thing. As a matter of fact, Poland was occupied several times, they had a lot of problems.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
Four times.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
To be sure that they are concerned with these problems. Then, they also have this problem with the border and with the ten million people who are abroad…

Comrade Janos Fazekas:
Fourteen million.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
…and most of them are in the United States of America they have a very strong influence on the whole country.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
They should carry out a sustained ideological activity.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Sure, but they have to clear some problems. Actually, all the prblems concerning national independence, the other problems, they should be the problems of the Party, of state policy. If they are left with the Catholic Church, it's no good. That is why the Catholic Church has got autonomy. In fact this is the country with strongest Catholic influence; Catholicism in Poland and the Pope is almost the same thing as it happens in Iran with Islam, with Khomeini.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
The most active Catholics are the Poles.

Comrade Nicolae Ceasescu:
And the most reactionary! It's not like that in Italy; they have there a more progressive position in many respects, but in Poland they placed themselves in clearly reactionary positions.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
Comrade Ceausescu, General Jaruzelski's briefing of the ambassadors is over, our ambassador is back and is writing his note. As soon as he is ready, they will convey it.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
It should be fetched here immediately!
Of course, a positive thing is that they want to solve their problem by themselves. Unfortunately, it happened now, they should have done it in 1980, in summer; they should have restored order then. If they appeal to foreign help, they would estrange the masses.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
In fact, they are totally against the Germans. They tried to do some military exchanges and they had some problems.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
Against the Russians as well.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Nevertheless, the only ones left are the Russians, but this will cause problems.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
Internationally.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
Domestic problems, first of all.

Comrade Ilie Verdet:
This will "add grist to the mill" of the others.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
The Hungarians are not willing to go. For instance, recently, at the ordinary meeting of the Military Committee of the defense ministers of the Warsaw Treaty member-states, the Hungarians refused to sign an Appeal.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
What Appeal?

Comrade Ilie Verdet:
It's known.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
We discussed it in the Standing Bureau of the Executive Political Committee; the comrades do not know about it.

The Soviets wanted to introduce in the general communiqué on the meeting a view on Poland, saying it was necessary, as the security of the socialist states was in jeopardy and that they should intervene to safeguard security. As a matter of fact, to approve intervention, Of course, the other delegates were prepared to agree. We were against and the Hungarians said that they would ask their people at home.

Of course, we said that we do not accept such a thing and we did not. The, they wanted to issue a separate communiqué. The Hungarians said that if the Romanian comrades do not sign, neither would they.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
Very nice!

Comrade Nicicolae Ceausescu:
It is true that there, the Soviet declared what happened to them, and the Hungarian asked what did he mean by that - he pounded the table - and said "you are offending the Hungarian people" and so on.

Comrade Constantin Olteanu:
He added that they would not sign this declaration precisely because had learned the teaching of the 1956 events.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
A foreign intervention is not acceptable anyway.

Comrade Petre Lupu:
Who would agree to it…?! They have problems enough.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Of, course, the Bulgarians might send a company or a battalion; the Czechs wouldn't, practically it is only the Soviets left. The Germans don't want to send anything.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
We should also release these communiqués to the press.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Have we released any news?

Comrade Eugen Florescu:
Nothing up to now, Comrade General Secretary.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
We must give what we have got at six o'clock this morning. We can release it as a piece of information now.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
We should broadcast it on the radio and television, including the part with "they have taken measures", and all they say here.

Comrade Cornel Burtica:
We will release a Polish press agency report.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
We must mention that, speaking on the radio and television, general Jaruzelski transmitted the following official communiqué, and give this part too. Comrade Popescu should see it.

Comrade Elena Ceausescu:
Let's see what our ambassador transmit from the meeting, what reports he has got.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
Sure. We must wait. Has their agency transmitted anything?

Comrade Stefan Bârlea:
"PAP" did not transmit anything.

Comrade Niclae Ceausescu:
We'll wait and see what happens in the meantime.
In fact, in Poland, this entire problem is also a direct outcome of the disagreements between the Americans and the Soviets.

Comrade Gheorghe Radulescu:
Yes. You are right, this is the main problem.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
The Americans want to use the "Polish problem" to create difficulties for the Soviets. They have an interest. They even say that they want to create problems, "to maintain this situation".

We have got now fresh information. In fact, it is the same as the morning news.

Comrade Stefan Andrei:
They said that only one radio station and one TV channel would be on air.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
So, we haven't released anything?

Comrade Eugen Florescu:
No.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
When is our first broadcast?

Comrade Eugen Florescu:
At 1:00 p.m.; we give a short piece of information, as you said, with Jaruzelski's statement.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
So, they haven't announced by this morning their measures, although they took them last night. They have taken the measures first and then they announced them.

Comrade Constantin Olteanu:
May I report, Comrade General Secretary, that foreign press agencies started to broadcast last night; we have got the first news from 2:30 a.m.

Comrade Tudor Postelnicu:
"AFP".

Comrade Janos Fazekas:
In fact, "Solidarity" gave a first report up to December 17, when they were going to make a coup.

Comrade Paul Niculescu:
They beat them to it.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescu:
They gave them a lot of time, they armed and organized themselves. Measures should have been taken much earlier.

For the moment being, comrades, we do not take any measures. Sure, take the necessary measures and let's attend our own business.

And we'll see what might happen. Now, the meeting is over.
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[SOURCE: ANIC, Fund CC of the RCP - Chancellery, File No. 101/1981, ff. 2-15.]
Translated by Delia Razdolescu