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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 13, 1958


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    Ambassador Gajewski details a conversation with French Minister Pineau, including Pineau's skepticism of the Rapacki Plan, his support of carrying out talks with the East, and the importance of disarmament.
    "Code Message No. 502 from Ambassador Gajewski in Paris to Rapacki ," January 13, 1958, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Polskie dokumenty dyplomatyczne 1958 (Warszawa: Polski Instytut Spraw Międzynarodowych, 2011), Document #18, pp.39-40. Translated by Jerzy Giebułtowski.
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January 13, code message from the ambassador in Paris

regarding a conversation with the French minister of foreign affairs

on the Rapacki Plan

Top secret!

Code message No 502

from Paris, transmitted Jan. 13, 1958 20.00 hrs


Conversation with Pineau.

1) He told me that as regards the Polish plan, the official position is as follows:

a) In view of the development of missile arsenals the denuclearization of the four states in the heart of Europe is meaningless from the military point of view.

b) Politically, he finds the plan understandable and even interesting, but only from the point of view of Polish-German relations, as a chance to make some progress on the Oder-Neisse border and German reunification.

c) On the other hand, he is against the plan from the point of view of NATO – Warsaw Pact relations, because, in his opinion, is must necessarily lead to demands for other state to assume neutrality (for example, Hungary, Romania, Belgium, Italy and finally France) which – without a general resolution of the problem of disarmament and control – could upset the balance, which is in nobody’s interest. He referred to among others, to Togliatti’s demand to denuclearize Italy.

2) As regards talks with the East I am in favor. In diplomatic talks with the Soviet Union, he recently proposed a meeting of foreign ministers to be held before the top-level conference only to name the participants and the agenda, to which he attaches a great importance. During talks with the USSR, France raised [the issue of] Poland’s participation, while the Soviet side spoke of the participation of China and India. France will not agree to China’s participation, and could agree to India’s participation only insofar as the agenda were to include issues of the Middle East. Also France demands that Italy take part.

3) As regards the general development to the situation, he is rather optimistic, and believes that in the months to follow the talks will be resumed, and dismisses any threat of war.

c4)c He finds the subsequent Bulganin letters effectively harmful, however he is right on a number of points. He believes that the mixing of all kinds of problems in the Soviet proposals does not facilitate breaking the impasse, and disorients public opinion. Drafting a reply takes a lot of time and energy, necessitates correspondence exchange, which serves propaganda and not a real solution of problems.

c5)c The key issue is disarmament and control, which should be thought anew in view of the new technological and strategic situation. Also the issue of the ban on testing requires a new approach in light of the recent Soviet tests with the hydrogen bomb, where the detonator is not an A bomb, so that is there is practically no radiation.

h4)h  c6)c As regards Polish-French relations, he said that construction of a mine would be decided by the Council Ministers on the 15th of this month, and that he would be defending the case, but does not want to specify the result.2[1]6 He also inquired after the condition of the library.2[2]7

/–/ Gajewski

AMSZ, ZD. 6/77, w. 59, t. 827

26 During Polish-French talks in February 1957, there appeared the idea of France donating equipment to one of the coalmines in the Rybnik area (Zofiówka). The idea never materialized.

27 After the war, the issue of ownership of the Polish Library in Paris was tried by French courts. The controversy was between the émigré milieus and PRP authorities. The verdict of 1959 effectively, gave the Library to the emigres: see doc. no 231; see also PDD 1959, docs No 123 and 206.


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