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Digital Archive International History Declassified

November 07, 1964


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

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    Zhou Enlai and Gomulka discuss the growing split between China and the Soviet Union.
    "Record of Conversation between Polish leader Wladyslaw Gomułka and Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai, Moscow," November 07, 1964, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Sygnatura XI A15, KC PZPR, AAN, Warsaw. Obtained by Douglas Selvage and translated by Malgorzata Gnoinska.
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Meeting between the CCP Delegation and the PUWP Delegation

Moscow, 11.7.1964

On November 7, 1964, a meeting took place between the party-state delegations of the PRC and the PPR which arrived in Moscow on the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution.  The meeting took place in the headquarters of the Polish Delegation.  It was initially announced by the Chinese comrades that this was to be an official visit.  It lasted from 19:15 hours until 21:30 hours.

From the Polish side, [the following comrades] participated in the meeting:

Cdes.  Wł. Gomułka, Zenon Kliszko, Adam Rapacki, Fr. Waniołka and E. Pszczółkowski.

From the Chinese side: Cdes. Zhou Enlai – Vice Chairman of the CC CCP and Prime Minister of the PRC State Council; Ho Lung – Member of the CC CCP Political Bureau, Vice Minister of the PRC State Council and Marshal of the People’s Republic of China; Kang Sheng – Deputy Member of the CC CCP Political Bureau and Member of the CC Secretariat; Liu Shaoqi - Member of the CC CCP and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the PRC; (the Ambassador to Moscow was not present during the meeting).

Zhou Enlai began to speak first after the heads of the delegations mutually introduced the participants of the meeting.  

Zhou Enlai: We are very happy that we have the opportunity to meet with the Polish comrades in Moscow.  We would like to hear the opinion of Cde. Gomułka.

Gomułka: We are also pleased that we can meet.

Zhou Enlai: (He, once more, expresses his satisfaction from the Chinese side.)

Gomułka: We positioned ourselves positively towards the initiative of the leadership of the CCP and the PRC government, as well as the CPSU leadership and the Soviet government, regarding the visit of the delegations to Moscow on the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution.  

We would like to see in this some kind of a beginning of a certain type of changes in mutual relations between the parties in the entire international communist movement.  We want this occasion, at which a series of party representatives met in Moscow, to become a good beginning for the creation of a better atmosphere in the mutual relations between the parties.  This is at least how we understand this initiative put forth by the CCP.

I think that it would be good if, on the occasion of this visit, Zhou Enlai presented his views on some issues on behalf of the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party.

Zhou Enlai:  We, just like you, also hope that, after the changes which took place in the Soviet government leadership and the CPSU, a good beginning will take place for outlining new mutual relations.  This, however, depends on both sides.  As far as other brotherly parties, this depends on many sides.  

Deputy Director of the Foreign Division of the CC PUWP, Cde. Kowalczyk, spoke recently with our ambassador.  Does Cde. Gomułka know anything about this?

Gomułka: I haven’t received the report yet.

Zhou Enlai: Our ambassador invited him for supper at the embassy.  We take very seriously what Comrade Kowalczyk, Deputy Director of the Foreign Division of the CC PUWP, said.

We had already expressed our wish and hope in our letter to the CC CPSU and the Soviet government.  We had expressed it for the second time in our letter to the CC CPSU and the Soviet government which we dispatched on the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution.  

The new leadership of the CPSU welcomed our propositions with delight and we understood that it would be ready to express its opinion while taking the opportunity of the occasion of the visit of the brotherly parties in Moscow.

We made an appointment with them for tomorrow afternoon; [it will be] in a smaller circle.  That is why we are still not sure what their views are and what steps will the leadership of the Soviet Union take in order to improve the relations.  After the meeting with the new leadership, if it takes place, we will relay to the Polish delegation, and especially to Comrade Gomułka, what we have learned.

We will briefly present our position:

Our wish is clear:  we desire for the two parties, the CCP and the CPSU, as well as the two countries, to unite on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and the proletarian internationalism in the fight against the common enemy and in our united fight.

We have the same wish as to the parties and countries of the socialist camp, they also have to unite on the same basis [Marxism-Leninism].

As far as the international communist movement [is concerned], our position is the same [that it has to unite on the basis of Marxism-Leninism.

This is our wish, but this is only a wish.  Its realization requires time and substantiation [skonkretyzowanie] since the existing divergences are relatively big and they cannot be immediately eliminated.  I can speak more specifically:

We think that the resignation of Khrushchev is a good thing.  The change will surely bring a certain type of changes in the policy of the party and the Soviet government.  This change will surely have some influence on the internal situation of the Soviet Union and on the relations between the parties, as well as on the fight against the enemies.  The most important [thing] is how far-reaching this change will be and how big of an influence will it have; but this, we will have to see.  This is our position; the position of the CC of our party and the Chinese government, because, first of all, we support all positive steps undertaken by the new leadership of the party and the Soviet government; and secondly, if it will be possible to “push” them towards something better, then we will make such efforts.

For example, we proposed the initiative to the USSR to send out invitations to all parties to participate in the celebrations of the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution, so in this way it [the USSR] would show the expression of unity and it would make it possible for the parties to celebrate this holiday jointly and to meet together.  The CC CPSU acknowledged that this initiative of ours was a good thing.

We cannot, however, be sure if they think the same as us and if they [would] take the same steps.  For example, today Cde. Gomułka asked me why the representatives from Albania didn’t come.  I already said that, on the one hand, they [the Soviets] did not invite them, and, on the other hand, they [Albanians] didn’t want to come.  We think that we had already fulfilled our duty by putting forth our initiative.  And, if this is not carried out here [by the Soviets], then this is a totally different matter.

We also proposed that all the countries of the socialist camp dispatch their party-state delegations to Moscow.  We were in contact with your ambassador [about this], so he should have relayed this to you.

Comrade Gomułka said that the Soviet Union and China must undertake the steps towards strengthening the unity right now.  The Central Committee of the CCP and the Chinese government like this statement.  

In our initiative, we mentioned 12 socialist countries, except for Yugoslavia, because it did not sign the Moscow Declaration from 1957 and it did not sign the Statement from the Conference in 1960.  That is why we did not mention Yugoslavia.  But, they invited the state delegation from Yugoslavia.  After its arrival to Moscow, this delegation called itself a party-state delegation.  This does not correspond with our propositions and that is why we are not pleased [about that].  This proves that, although he [Brezhnev] accepted our initiative, he does not think like us.  And, some changes may still [be yet] to come despite the fact that he accepted our initiative.

We were at the Academy yesterday.  We prepared a speech to be presented at the Academy.  Our speech is in the same spirit as our letter to the new leadership.  We expressed a wish that, in case we could not give the speech at the Academy, the speech [should] be published in the newspaper for the public information.  Brezhnev said that he had to think about it.  I think that they will give us an answer tomorrow, and that is why I cannot express my opinion today.  Today, for example, there was a banquet.  We also prepared the text for a toast which was maintained in the same spirit of unity expressing our wishes and congratulations.  The CC CPSU informed us that it did not welcome any speeches from the delegations of the brotherly countries.  Respecting certain views of the hosts, we did not adhere to our wish and we did not give the speech at the party.

The party was in the form of a cocktail party, and that is why some of us talked to the comrades from the CC CPSU.  It turns out that some of the Soviet comrades talked to us in a demagogic manner.  

Foreign correspondents had already found out about some of these pronouncements and one does not have to wait long for their reaction.  We will see what they say; today we cannot foresee [what will happen].

We wish to explain [to you that] offering congratulations and wishes of unity is not an easy thing for us [to do].  The communists must take these matters seriously, as Cde. Deng was saying.  There are parties which hold serious positions and one has to approach these matters with utmost seriousness.  I am not saying this as if we were to lose hope.  The efforts must be made by both sides; this is a long process.  If there is order [stability], then it already means a lot.   As I was already saying in the beginning, we will have to wait and see how some matters will develop.  

The basic divergences are so big that all problems cannot be resolved immediately.  

We are convinced that imperialism, reaction [reactionary forces] and their serfs are undoubtedly exploiting the split between the Soviet Union and China, the split within the socialist camp, and in the international communist movement.  We have to act differently in order not to bring joy to them and [in order] to go against their wishes.  

That is why we are willing to stay longer in Moscow if this will be possible and necessary.  We will make all the efforts in order to improve the situation.  But, when it comes to the fundamental matters, we have to restrain ourselves.  We think that if a certain type of matters cannot be explained [resolved] at once, then they have to be put aside.  Perhaps we will be able to undertake at least a few steps towards the unity; we’ll see.

We would like to, if at all possible, to conduct the meeting with Comrade Gomułka, and the Polish delegation, and to exchange views.

I would like to talk about one particular matter; about the matter which is more pressing for us.  There is this passage in yesterday’s letter from Brezhnev:  they [the Soviets] feel that the situation had already matured in order to convene an international conference of the communist parties.  We look at this differently.  We think that the situation has not matured yet and that many more efforts are needed.  The conference, which they planned to call for December 15, is illegitimate [unlawful].  It should no longer be mentioned.  Now, we have to work towards [having] bilateral meetings, maybe multilateral ones, [and towards] creating [favorable] conditions; and this all requires time.  The convening of a conference would mean sealing [przypieczętować] the split; we do not agree to this.  We will not participate in such a conference, and many parties will not participate in it either.

We also know that the Polish party is also feeling certain difficulties towards such a conference.  I do not know if I understand your position well.

This is how much I would like to say today.  Perhaps other members of the delegation would still like to add something.  In any case, we want to state, once more, that we think that our meeting today is only the beginning of meetings with each other.  We hope that, while here [in Moscow], we will meet several times [and] exchange our views.

Gomułka:  First of all, on behalf of our delegation I would like to thank Comrade Zhou Enlai for presenting, in a very general manner for now, the position of the CCP on some matters.

First of all, I will present the general position of our party.

We were, and we continue to be, in favor of the unity of the communist parties and the socialist countries.  We also think that such unity should be based on the principles of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism.  

We represented this position in the past; we represented it during the time when there were still no differences of opinions; we represented it at the moment of the most heated dispute; and we represent it until today.  We express it publicly at times.  

We think that we shouldn’t do anything that would exacerbate it [the disunity] more given the situation which currently exists.  The imperialists are already benefiting and would benefit from this.  Many examples could be mentioned here [which testify to the fact] that the breakup in our camp, [and] in the international communist movement, encourages the imperialists towards the intensification of the aggressiveness against our socialist countries.  It is enough to mention, as one of the very glaring examples, the American aggression against North Vietnam [and] the bombing of Vietnam [in August 1964 following the Tonkin Gulf incident].  This [American aggression] is somehow related to the breakup within our camp.  In our opinion, if there were no breakup, then the imperialists would have to think very hard whether to take such provocative steps as they did towards Vietnam.

Therefore, the restoration of the unity is not the matter of wishes of this or another party, but it is a necessity which is dictated by life itself.  If we don’t do this [now], we will all pay for it [later].

We publicly emphasized many times that it was only the enemies who were happy with the disputes that are taking place within the international communist camp; the imperialists are rubbing their hands with pleasure.  That is why we think today, as well as in the past, that the restoration of unity depends, foremost, on the two biggest parties within our camp; it depends on the leadership of the CCP and the CPSU.  If the dispute continues between the two biggest parties and the two biggest countries in our camp, then it is difficult to imagine how the unity can exist in our movement.

I was pleased when our ambassador in Beijing, [J.] Knothe, repeated the [following] words of Zhou Enlai [to me]:“I am pleased with the formulation that the restoration of the unity depends foremost on the two parties.”

It just so happened that our countries are distant geographically, and that we are more familiar with the position of the CPSU than with the position of the CCP.  It is clear that I don’t want to speak for the CPSU.  I am not authorized to speak on behalf of another party.  I can only speak on behalf of our party.  But, as much as I understand the position of the current leadership of the CPSU, I know that they desire unity and reaching an understanding with the CCP [and] the People’s [Republic of] China.

We treat the changes in the CPSU leadership and the Soviet government as their internal affair.

We have always thought, we think today, and we will continue to think that a party should not meddle in the internal affairs of another party [and that] a country [should not meddle] in the internal affairs of another country.

Objectively [speaking], the situation is such that the departure of Cde. Khrushchev has created, in some sense, a better climate for the talks, for rapprochement, and for working out a common platform for the most important problems which exist in our movement [and in our] camp.

Comrade Zhou Enlai presented us with some facts, which, in his opinion, are said to attest to a not-so-good will of the CPSU towards the rapprochement and paving the path towards an understanding; namely, the issues of the speeches in the Academy, at the banquet, and the issue of inviting the Yugoslav delegation.

I didn’t know about this; no one told me that.  In a sense, I can understand the Soviet comrades, because in a situation when one party, even as important of a party as the CCP, were to give a speech, then why couldn’t the PUWP, as well as all the 12 parties, which participated in the celebrations of the October Revolution and were now at the Academy, to also give speeches?  We would somehow feel hurt if we arrived unprepared and the Soviet comrades told us that other parties would be giving speeches.  One speech could have possibly taken place if one party would wish and congratulate [the USSR] on the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution on behalf of all the others.  But, this would also require [prior] consultation.  

This evidently was not foreseen in the program.  I don’t know if the Chinese comrades turned to the Soviet comrades, prior to [their arrival], about their desire to give a speech.  [If that would be the case] then, we would also be contacted and we could have coordinated such a thing.  However, since there was no prior consultation, then announcing the speech on the last day would surely create difficulties.

We know the position of the Soviet comrades regarding the suggestion of the Chinese comrades of not to invite Yugoslavia.  The Soviet comrades informed us about it.  We deemed it the internal decision of the CPSU and the Soviet government whose right it is to invite delegations from every country to its national holiday – the 47th anniversary of the October Revolution.

Two issues should be distinguished here: the participation of a delegation of some country in celebrations of a national holiday and the participation of a delegation and party in specific party conferences.

The Soviet comrades did not invite Yugoslavia to a party conference, but they invited it to participate in its national holiday.  Our party also expressed its view that if the CPSU and the Soviet government wanted to invite the Yugoslav delegation, then this was their business and we absolutely had no reservations.  If, however, the point was to invite the Yugoslav party to participate in an international conference, then the opinions of other parties would have to be heard; and this is already a matter of consultation.

I asked Comrade Zhou Enlai about Albania today, because I understood the initiative of your leadership in such a way that individual parties and countries would turn to the Soviet ambassadors in their countries with the desire to participate in the celebrations of the October [Revolution] holiday.  And, this is how other parties must have understood this, because our ambassador in [North] Vietnam informed us that the Vietnamese party at once announced its desire to dispatch their delegation to Moscow, and it immediately obtained an invitation.  Had the Albanian party also approached [whom] [trans. note— Gomułka is not clear in here.  Albania could not have approached the Soviet ambassador, as did other parties, since Albania didn’t have one due to the fact that there were no diplomatic relations between Albania and the Soviet Union at the time since they were broken off on 3 December 1961], and [expressed that] it also wanted to come, I am convinced that, of course I cannot speak on behalf of the USSR, it would have been invited; even though I cannot guarantee it.  The Albanian comrades not only did not do that, but already after the resignation of Comrade Khrushchev they made a series of attacks on the new leadership of the party and the Soviet government.  

Comrade Zhou Enlai was right to say that neither an understanding nor rapprochement can be achieved if the other side does not want to do so.  The Albanian side clearly showed that it did not want this rapprochement.  It showed this particularly through its campaign in the press against the new Soviet leadership.  The Association of Soviet-Albanian Friendship invited, as far as I know (I don’t know exactly, but this was to be done), the Albanian delegation.  And, no one came even at this social level.  Therefore, one should have an objective view and this is the objective approach towards the absence of Albania; [this is] all the more since it does not maintain diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union.  I hope that Comrade Zhou Enlai will share this opinion since there are no excuses for the Albanian comrades.

What do we consider to be the first and most fundamental condition to create such an atmosphere which would further the talks, the rapprochement, the agreement of opinions and the elimination of the divergences?

First of all, the renunciation of all public attacks of one party against another party.  We were pleased to learn that after the statement of the Soviet comrades regarding the departure of Comrade Khrushchev, the polemics between the CCP and the CPSU were stopped in the press and on the radio.  The Soviet comrades told us recently that they also prohibited the publishing of any articles which would maintain an unfavorable spirit towards the CCP and the Chinese government.  Today, however, we found out about an unpleasant thing.  The Soviet comrades told me that the Chinese press had reinstated, since a few days ago, unfriendly publications towards the USSR in the form of reprints of articles from other parties, and especially from the Albanian one.  Therefore, [we see] here some kind of deterioration; this is a bad phenomenon.  One would like to think that this was of a temporary nature, because if these types of publications begin [to appear] again, then this will create an atmosphere not conducive to the talks.  And, as far as I am informed, the Soviet comrades would like to create such [a friendly] climate.  Our party and we are working towards this [goal] very much; besides, not since today.

Both you and we are in agreement that we are basing [our policies] on the Declaration and the Statement from 1957 and 1960 [respectively].  But, very significant differences have emerged, haven’t they?  We should explain to each other what constitutes these real differences and those illusions [phantasms].  And this seems to us the most essential, most important and fundamental matter.  

We are fully aware that, what happened after the whole polemics [and] the discussion between the communists, in which a [negative] language started to be used, [a language which is] foreign to us, the communists, will not facilitate improving the relations.  Much residue remained after such discussion and this will make it difficult to work out a united position and to take a joint path.  As far as the matters of ideology [are concerned], it will perhaps be difficult [to achieve] the identity of views [and] positions.  In any case, a longer period of time is needed for these positions to get as close to each other as possible.  But, we think that, even in face of the differences of a certain types of views in ideological matters, the most important thing is to work out a united position and a uniform action [policy] towards imperialism [and] towards the aggressive moves [of the imperialists].  It is the most important thing to have a unified position on this point.  One can differ on many issues, but if there is a common enemy, [then] one has to be together. After all, this occurred, for example, during World War II, when the Soviet Union had to ally even with the imperialist nations, with the US, England, and France, against a common enemy, the Nazi Germany and Japan.  Sure, I don’t doubt that even now the countries which are at odds with one another would also unite in face of war, if it were to break out.  But, the point here is not to wait for the outbreak out of a war, is it?  We need a unified position.  Our party had never had the slightest doubts as to the position of the CCP and the Chinese government in matters of war and peace; we did not doubt that you base [your policy] on peace [politics].  At the same time, it seems to us that we are both realizing that only through a unified action of our parties [and] our socialist camp, can we create a necessary force in the world which would be able to paralyze the military intentions of the imperialists.  Now, a somewhat new situation has evolved related to the recent nuclear test carried out by the PRC [on 16 October 1964].  I think that this should be a factor which must further the rapprochement and the unified activity between the USSR and the PRC, instead of distancing them from each another.

We know the previous position of the CC CCP on the issue of convening the Editorial Commission for preparing an international conference.  Personally, I think that there are many misunderstanding which are taking place here, and that, in our opinion, the Chinese comrades did not assess rightly the intentions by which some of the parties were guided [and which] expressed their consent of participating in the work of the [Editorial] Commission.

Comrade Zhou Enlai is correctly saying that something has changed after the departure of Comrade Khrushchev.  And, wouldn’t the Chinese comrades see it as appropriate to draw proper conclusions and change their attitude regarding the abovementioned Editorial Commission (we adopted such a name which we agreed upon)?  I would personally say that, even if Comrade Khrushchev were to stay in his position, then the matters would develop in such a way as formulated in our letter from July 30.  Therefore, even before the changes there was no such a situation in which he [Khrushchev] could impose on other parties his views on this issue.  To be sure, we perhaps shouldn’t even talk about this today, because it is no longer topical.  In any case, in our opinion, there is a need for a conference.  It existed before and it exists today.  The point here is not to prejudge the date of the Conference since the first deadline was rather unrealizable.  However, the need exists to prepare the Conference, to get in contact with other parties, to consult on how to convene it, what matters to discuss, and to bring about such a Conference.  And, if we come jointly to an understanding that such a need exists, so why reject from the start the deadline of the meeting of several parties?  (Rapacki: The point here is to discuss the method.)  It seems to us that nothing should stand in a way in order to come to an understanding in this matter.  Perhaps some would care about the composition of the parties, which are to assemble and to discuss the problems, but even this issue could be agreed upon; just the same as it was in the original conception.

In our opinion, there should also be a new view on the part of the Chinese comrades in light of this new situation.  It seems to us that, regardless of the need of [convening] such a meeting, this would also be one of the expressions of goodwill on the part of the Chinese comrades [that is wanted,] to discuss, consider and achieve mutual understanding.  

It is difficult to predict how the world events will develop.  In any case, the faster we begin to act on the fundamental matters, while having the uniform position, the better for us.  (Rapacki: No one wants a split.)  Correct.  But the facts remain facts.

Comrade Zhou Enlai expresses hope that we would be able to consult with one another, to exchange our views, etc.  I get the impression that you deserve a return visit from us.  If we didn’t repay the visit, it would be right for you to have grievances against us.  (General amusement.)

Zhou Enlai:  The point here is not the return visits.

Gomułka:  To be sure, we are speaking as the state-party delegations, but even at the [level of] party relations it happens that due to some deficiencies in the officially recorded matters, some residue remains.  That is why we would like to announce our visit with the comrades.  When – this is yet to be decided.  We came here without any specific program.  No one presented it to us, because it did not exist at all.  We understood it in this way that we would be able to exchange views on certain matters at this occasion.  We attach great importance to the results of your talks with the leadership of the CPSU.  We also don’t think that our role is of no significance.  We are very interested in the results of these talks; we would like to take part in achieving this rapprochement; we would like to make our own contributions to the rapprochement between the parties; and to the restoration of the unity within the camp.  But, we did not come here with the purpose of staying in Moscow for some time.  On November 20th, we have the CC Plenum, and, as you know, the preparations require a lot of work.  We cannot arrive the day before the Plenum; we have to be there at least 8 days ahead of time.  It is difficult to judge how long we will stay and how long we will need to stay here.  We can explain many things to each other until this time.

Let us end at this. We presented our view on the fundamental matters as much as we could, albeit in a very general manner, and we became familiar with the position of the CCP which was represented by Comrade Zhou Enlai.  

Zhou Enlai: Thank you for your information regarding these matters.  This will contribute to [our] better understanding of the position of the PUWP.  First of all, we think that we share a mutual position on two points.  First, as Comrade Gomułka was saying, even though fundamental differences exist between the CPSU and the CCP, as also [happens] between other parties, we have to act together against [our] common enemies, and especially when, for example, the Americans are showing their very aggressive face.  This is the position which we held in the past and which we hold also today.  I told [CPSU Politburo member Anastas Mikoyan that we had to have a unified position in face of [common] enemies.

Secondly, as Comrade Gomułka was saying, everyone is sincerely hoping for strengthening the unity between the CPSU and the CCP in this current situation and at this moment.  We also have the same desire to strengthen the relations with other parties.

We will be meeting with the leadership of the CPSU.  The Polish and Chinese parties also must meet and to contribute to the realization of this wish.

These two issues unite us since the strengthening of the unity is certainly not beneficial to our enemies.  

Since we already have convergent views on these two points, then it will be easier for us to talk about more specific matters.  I will discuss them only briefly today.

1) We want to see the improvement of the relations between the CCP and the CPSU as well as the improvement of the state relations between both countries. We want to “push” and to add efforts, but this is not such an easy thing.

Comrade Gomułka stated that this depends on both sides.  Comrade Gomułka said that he heard from the Soviet comrades that they also wished for that.  We met with their leadership yesterday.  They also told us so.  We are thus saying that we want to contribute [our] strengths, and we will, in order to improve the situation; but here I would like to explain two matters.

First, as Polish comrades know, very big and fundamental divergences exist between the CCP and the CPSU.  Comrade Gomułka also said that, in his opinion, the gradual elimination of the divergences requires time.  We also think that this is a matter of time.  We therefore share a mutual view on this issue.  But, for example, the Polish comrades know very well where the public polemics came from.  I am only talking about the public polemics as to the fundamental, and not secondary, matters.

Twenty days have passed since the resignation of Khrushchev, and the CPSU also published articles in “Pravda” (preliminary articles) which contained a series of issues regarding fundamental matters with which we don’t agree.  A series of important issues were also broadcast in radio programs, in the press, and in the statements of Comrade Brezhnev; we don’t agree with them.  We will explain our positions on these important matters; this is the duty of our party.  The divergences still remain despite the fact that Khrushchev is gone.  We have not yet given an answer.  Our congratulatory letter did not contain an answer.  This proves that the change in the leadership of the CPSU does not yet signify the end of the disputes.  But, even though there are still differences on the fundamental issues, this does not mean that nothing can be done in the area of strengthening the unity between the CPSU and the CCP as well as other parties.  We think that much has to be done in this area.  I will quote one example.  We invited the party-state delegations from all the socialist countries for our national holiday.  Khrushchev was still around.  At that time, we did not discuss, either in our publications, articles or pronouncements, the issues which contained fundamental divergences.  We directed the blade of these materials against the common enemy.

Your delegation took part in the celebrations and your ambassador serves as the witness to what I had said.  This means that we were able to create such [favorable] conditions.  Khrushchev was [still the leader of the USSR] at the time.

The situation is more favorable after Khrushchev resigned.  I want to say that there are [favorable] conditions, but if there were no efforts from either side, we would not be able to create such a situation; we could not afford to talk about these essential matters.  

Comrade Gomułka brought up this matter, so I would like to explain.  We made a proposition to the CPSU to invite all [socialist] countries for [their] holiday, but we did not talk about a speech.  We did not invite other delegations to our holiday to give a speech either.  Liu Shaoqi, the deputy prime minister, proposed the speech.  The blade of this speech was directed against the enemies.

The Soviet comrades of the CC CPSU informed us that if the brotherly parties wished to give a speech, then the Soviet comrades would create [favorable] conditions [to do so]. The main content of this speech boils down to the need for unity in the fight with the common enemy.  Besides, our speech contained a high assessment of the October Revolution.

After a few days have passed, they informed us that a series of brotherly parties did not intend to make speeches and that is why they would not invite the CC CCP to give one either, although they said that they would think about it.  I asked the leadership of the CPSU whether I could give a speech, and I said that if that were impossible, perhaps our speech could be published in the press.  We did not pressure the CPSU to express their consent, because we were told that they still had to consult the matter among each other.  The issue of our giving a speech at the Academy was to be, as they informed us, consulted with other brotherly parties.  In light of this, we gave the texts of our speeches to the comrades in the CPSU.  Brezhnev said yesterday that the [Chinese] ambassador informed him that after the arrival of our delegation we would be consulting the matter, and that is why I asked him.  He said that he wanted to meet with other parties and that is why I gave him my statement.  The Academy took place yesterday and we have not received any reply, and most likely, I will not give a speech.  I asked Brezhnev during the break at the Academy whether he became familiar with my statement.  He said that he hadn’t had the time yet [to do so].  I asked him to read it carefully and to publish it in a newspaper.  It was then when he gave another answer, that is, that he had to consult it with his comrades and that is why I told you [the Poles] that I haven’t received an answer from him yet.

What I am saying here is that, even though we may have our goodwill, some difficulties still persist.  This does not mean, however, that we no longer wanted to come here with the wishes, with congratulating [the Soviets] and to conduct meetings.

When it comes to the Yugoslav delegation, then, of course, it is their [Soviets’] business.  The Soviet comrades informed us that they only invited a state delegation.  We did not protest this, because we are not authorized to do so.  We also did not proceed as to give up coming here due to this reason [the Yugoslavs], because this would not correspond with our own proposition.  But, once I was already here, I realized that they invited a party-state delegation of Yugoslavia.  

Gomułka: Until now, I was of the understanding that this was a state delegation.

Zhou Enali:  It was officially published in the paper [that it is otherwise].

Gomułka: This does not change things, because it is their delegation.

Zhou Enlai: What I tried to say here is that the issue had not been successfully resolved.

The issue of Albania had a somewhat different aspect.  We want some kind of a rapprochement between the Soviet Union and Albania after the resignation of Khrushchev.  This is a matter of unified efforts.  We talked with the Albanian comrades and we told them that we had hopes that they would send their delegation to the USSR.  We also told the Soviet comrades to invite the Albanian delegation.  We think that our position is fair.

Objectively speaking, the USSR must come out with the initiative of inviting Albania.

Gomułka: Why?

Zhou Enlai:  Because the Soviet Union broke off its diplomatic relations with Albania [on 3 December 1961].  Khrushchev began the attack [on Albania] for the first time at the [October 1961] XXII Congress.  We both participated in this congress.  My speech at the XXII Congress was very moderate.  We expressed the wish of not attacking publicly any parties which were not invited and [therefore] absent.  What conclusion did Khrushchev draw from my words? He thought that public polemics was necessary.  He did not ponder our suggestions.  You [already] know how the situation developed afterwards.  Therefore, if one is to talk about the pronouncements and about the initiative, then he made this turn himself.  The Albanian comrades did not express their wish to come and [therefore] they are excused.  We expressed our wish to both of the sides, and we received such answers: from one, that it wouldn’t invite, and from another, that it wouldn’t come.

That is why we are informing you today.  That is why we do not agree with the reprobation of the Albanian comrades, because I personally talked [to the Soviets?] regarding this matter.  I have been [trying to] take care of this matter [ever] since the XXII Congress and I would like to resolve it today.  We can no longer [try] to persuade Khrushchev, because there is already a new leadership and that is why we began to have hopes.

I will yet talk to Brezhnev.

As far as publishing articles of the brotherly countries, we think that either none should be published, or they should all be published.  The members of our party must be well informed about these matters.

Gomułka: And to broadcast on the radio?

Zhou Enlai: We also published your opinion in our press and we broadcast it on the radio.

Gomułka: [But this was a] positive opinion!

Zhou Enlai: We publish both positive and negative ones.  We published the speeches of Kosygin and Brezhnev.  We broadcast [them] on the radio.  [We also published] Kadar’s statement, and he attacked us [in it], didn’t he?  Your speech [was published] on the same occasion.

Gomułka: It is hard to say that Kadar attacked you in his statement.  There was a subjective twist, but not an attack.

Zhou Enlai: In any case, this is their criticism of us.  Why, then, wouldn’t we publish Albania’s critique of the USSR?  The French party also had their position, so did the Italian one.  We published everything.

Kliszko: The language, which is being used in these articles, is a very important matter.

Zhou Enlai: As far as the language, we have to look into the past. Much was said over there.

Kliszko: That’s true.

Zhou Enlai: We cannot behave in such a way as we are getting close to one, but distancing [ourselves] from another.  There is already new leadership in the CPSU, but even after these changes, the newspaper, “Sovetskaia Pechat”, had already published an article attacking the Japanese communist party.  Therefore, if we are to talk about those things, we should talk about them from the point of view taken as a whole.

Both sides must make the efforts.  Comrade Gomułka is also of this opinion.  Even though difficulties exist and even though the matter is not simple, [nevertheless] we will not give up our efforts.  And, even though they expressed their opinion today about a certain matter in such a way that it felt like an insult, it would still not make us give up [our] efforts.  

Gomułka: An insult?

Zhou Enlai: I will talk with you after my meeting with the Soviet comrades.  Suffice it to say, even a group of American journalists, who were present at the party, got the picture [trans. note—it is not quite clear what Zhou Enlai is referring to here.  It’s hard to discern whether he is happy or sad about the fact that the Americans took the picture].  

But we do not despair.  We did not despair [even] when Khrushchev was around.  We believed that the Soviet people and the party prefer positive factors.  And all parties should have such faith.  This is where the strength of our camp and our movement [lies].  Efforts must be made, but this takes time.

We think at the same time that we shouldn’t hurry with convening the conference.  I don’t want to say here that such a conference will not be needed in the future.  However, [favorable] conditions must be created [for such conference].  Were the conference to take place on December 15, we would not accept it, because this was not consulted with us.  As to some parties, which are announcing their [desire] for participation, then we understand their intentions.  For example, we understand the Polish position and there was no misunderstanding here.  You want the conference, because you don’t want the split.  However, Khrushchev imposed his will on other parties more than once.  This is the past and we don’t have to talk about him, but it is [also] better not to talk about December 15.  If the Soviet comrades once more put forth the issue of December 15, then it means that they want the split.

Comrade Gomułka was talking about a unified position and a uniform action.  Brezhnev also referred to the Statement from 1960 yesterday.  However, the Statement is also our unified position.  Comrade Gomułka participated in the conference in 1960 and [therefore] he knows very well about it.  All agreed with the Statement.  It proclaims that consultations must take place between the parties and only then can the conference [take place].  We must make efforts in order to return to this position.  Even though this will take time, and the steps will be slow, nevertheless this will bring benefits in the end for our united fight against our enemies.

Here is my explanation as to the major issues.

As to the goodwill of Comrade Gomułka, which was expressed in [his] speech on the occasion of Tsedenbal’s visit in Poland, then we are happy about it, we have respect for your statement and that is why we hope that Comrade Gomułka will stay here longer and that we will meet and talk [more], because there is also a need for talks between China and Poland, and not only between the CPSU and the CCP.  These are the matters which are connected to the interests of the entire movement and the entire socialist camp.  The parties have an equal right and we would like to hear your opinion.  That is why we don’t want a return visit, but a meeting.

Gomułka: We are not fighting about the deadlines. (General animation, laughter.)

Zhou Enlai: Perhaps you could come to sample Chinese dishes the day after tomorrow?

Gomułka: We are on for the 9th, the day after tomorrow.  We will set the hours later since the hosts are preparing a joint lunch on that day.

Zhou Enlai:  In this case either before or after that lunch.  Our ambassador will be in contact with your [ambassador].  But this is not the end of our talks.

Kliszko: It’s just the beginning.

Gomułka: I reserve the right to return to this [issue] which Zhou Enlai does not want to hear about.  I have such right and I will use it.

Zhou Enlai: The difference of opinions will bring about a discussion, because without a difference there would be no discussion.

Rapacki: And there wouldn’t be any point of meeting.  (Again animation, laughter.)

Gomułka: (Warmheartedly thanks Comrade Zhou Enlai and proposes the toast to friendship and the success of the talks).