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Digital Archive International History Declassified

June 10, 1944

MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION BETWEEN HARRIMAN, STALIN, AND MOLOTOV, 'POLAND'

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    Ambassador Harriman and Joseph Stalin discuss questions regarding the Polish government.
    "Memorandum of Conversation between Harriman, Stalin, and Molotov, 'Poland'," June 10, 1944, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Container # 172, W. Averell Harriman Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/219914
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    https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/219914

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SECRET

Conversation             June 10, 1944

The Kremlin

Present: The American Ambassador, Mr. Harriman

 Marshal Stalin

 Mr. Molotov

 Mr. Page, Second Secretary of Embassy

 Mr. Pavlov, Secretary to Mr. Molotov

Subject: Poland.

I stated that I knew Marshal Stalin did not like to talk about the Poles and in reply to his question “Why not?” remarked that the last time he had said so. Marshal Stalin smiled and said that there were many good Poles. I inquired whether Mr. Molotov had conveyed to him the President’s message on the Polish situation. He replied in the affirmative. I asked him whether the message was clear. Mr. Molotov briefly reviewed for Marshal Stalin the President’s message regarding Mikolajczyk’s visit to the United States. I added that the President would tell Mikolajczyk that he must look to Moscow and come to a firm understanding with the Russians; that that was not possible so long as such men as Sosnkowski remained in the Mikolajczyk Government. I said that the President did not feel that he could be very helpful during the election months. Marshal Stalin said he realized that it was especially difficult for him at the present time. I said that the President had complete confidence that Marshal Stalin would work out the Polish question in accordance with the Tehran discussions. The Marshal stated that the Soviet attitude regarding Poland had not changed since Tehran. In response to Stalin’s question I said that the President’s had remained the same, remarking, however, that the President was puzzled with respect to the status of Lwow. The President did not have suggestions to make in this respect and believed that this question was one to be settled between the Russians and the Poles. He felt sure that is the Marshal gave sympathetic study to the frontier question an understanding could be reached with the Poles. Marshal Stalin stated that is anything arose in Polish-Soviet relations he would keep the President informed. I said that the President was very anxious to be kept informed and that I knew he would appreciate that message. The Marshal state that he was bound to keep the President advised.

The Marshal stated that he had been much interested in meeting the four representatives of the Polish National Council who had recently arrived in Moscow. I said if they desired to see me I was authorized to receive them unofficially, although of course I would not seek such an interview. I inquired whether the Marshal thought such a meeting would be useful. He thought the meeting would be very helpful. The Marshal commented that the representatives were “living” people and not émigrés and that they would have a great deal to tell me. I said that perhaps Stalin could find a way to have them approach me. Molotov replied that they had returned to Moscow yesterday and that he would suggest to them that they see me tomorrow. I remarked that it might be well not to say that I was willing to meet them. Marshal Stalin agreed.

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