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Digital Archive International History Declassified

November 14, 1945


This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    Stalin advises Polish officials Gomulka and Mintz on the political and economic situation in Poland.
    "Meeting of J.V. Stalin with V. Gomulka and G. Mintz Regarding the Situation in Poland," November 14, 1945, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, APRF, fond 45, opis 1, delo 355, listy 8-11; published in [Eastern Europe in the Documents of the Russian Archives 1944-1953] vol. 1 (1944-48), ed. T.V. Vololeitina et. al., (Moscow: Siberian Chronograph, 1997), pp. 301-303; translated by Daniel Rozas.
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Distributed to V. Molotov, L. Beria, G. Malenkov, A. Mikoyan, and A. Vyshinskii.

Moscow     14 November 1945


To com. MOLOTOV for chetverka [apparently, Stalin's inner circle of four, which probably consisted of the persons listed above: Beria, Malenkov, Mikoyan and Vyshinskii (in addition to Molotov himself)].

The discussion took place without being recorded (the Poles deemed it unnecessary to keep a record of conversation), thus I am sending you the contents of the discussion in the form of questions and answers.

QUESTION FROM POLES. Has there been a change in the Soviet leaders' attitude toward Poland and, in particular, toward Polish communists?

ANSWER FROM COM. STALIN. This did not and could not change. Our attitude toward Poles and Polish Communists are as friendly as before.

QUESTION. Should we adopt a law for nationalizing large industry and banks?

ANSWER. Following Benesch's adoption of such a law, the time has come when this law must be adopted in Poland as well.

QUESTION. Should we allow foreign investment in Poland in the form of concessions or in some other form?

ANSWER. This matter is very serious, and it must be carefully examined by the Poles themselves.

Note: The Poles have not said that they have rejected the Soviet proposal for joint enterprises. I have the impression that the Poles would have no objection to making concessions to foreign capital under this scenario.

QUESTION. Should we adopt the PPS [Polish Socialist Party] proposal for repealing grain procurement and announcing a free market without price regulations?

ANSWER. However regrettable it may be, sooner or later the Poles will have to take this step, since, under a non-Soviet system and in the absence of war, it is not possible to maintain for long a system of grain procurement and price regulations.

QUESTION. Would I object if the Poles accepted a loan from the Americans or the English, and would I allow this loan to be accepted under the conditions that would more or less limit Poland's utilization of the loan?

ANSWER. The loan can be accepted, but without any types of conditions that would limit Poland's rights in the utilization of the loan.

QUESTION. Can we conclude a pact of mutual assistance with France?

ANSWER. You can, but it must fully conform to the spirit of the mutual assistance pact concluded between Poland and the USSR.

QUESTION. Should we pursue further the question of Teshin and can the USSR support Poland in the negotiations on Teshin with Czechoslovakia?

ANSWER. I don't advise you to pursue this question further, since, after receiving Silesian coking coal, Poland no longer has an argument for the transfer of Teshin to the Poles, in light of which the USSR cannot support the Poles in this matter. It would be better to eliminate quickly this contentious issue with Czechoslovakia, limit the matter to the resettlement of Teshin Poles in Poland, and re-establish good relations with Czechoslovakia. On the question of resettling Teshin Poles in Poland, the USSR can support the Poles in the negotiations with Czechoslovakia.

QUESTION. Should representatives of the VKP(b) [All-Union Communist Party of Bolsheviks] be invited to the PPR [Polish Workers Party] Congress that will be taking place in the near future?

ANSWER. It would be better not to invite, so that opponents would not be able to say that the PPR Congress is taking place under the control of the VKP(b).

QUESTION. Can we announce at the PPR Congress that the PPR is continuing in the line and tradition of the Polish Communist Party, which had been liquidated even prior to the war?

ANSWER. This should not be done because the Polish Communist Party has in actuality become an agency of Pilsudchiks, even though opponents have painted it as the agency of the VKP(b). It would be better to announce at the PPR congress that the PPR is a new party and that it is not tied to the line and traditions of the Polish communist party.

QUESTION. Are we correct in thinking that it would be expedient to postpone general elections in Poland for another year?

ANSWER. I think that it would be better to hold elections no later than spring of 1946, since further postponement of elections would be very difficult both due to internal and international reasons.

QUESTION. Osubka-Moravski is acting badly. If he does not improve in the near future, we would like to replace him prior to the organization of the elections with Mr. Lange (the current Polish ambassador to the USA, a moderate PPS-ist, and well disposed, in the Poles' opinion, toward communists). What can you suggest?

ANSWER. If you have no other option and if it is impossible at present to put forth the candidacy of Bierut (the Poles believe this combination to be inexpedient), then you can make an attempt with Lange, with the goal of using Lange to dismantle the PPS. Consult with Wanda Lvovna, who is closely familiar with Lange.

The rest of the discussion dealt with questions regarding the shipment of 30 tons of seed grain from the Rokossowski reserves and fulfilling the Poles' request for railroad transport. But you already know about these matters.