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March 21, 1990

Working Record of the Talks of the Prime Minister T. Mazowiecki, with CIA Director W. Webster

This document was made possible with support from The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars


Working record of the talks of the Prime Minister T. Mazowiecki, with CIA Director W. WEBSTER
Washington, March 21, 1990

Referring to the program of the Prime Minister's visit to in the USA, director WEBSTER informed about President Bush's considerable satisfaction with the course of the discussion.

In response, Prime Minister T. Mazowiecki referred to his talks in the Department of State of the United States. "We are very interested,” he said, “in relaxing the COCOM limitations, especially in view of the situation in telecommunications and banks."

"The Poland’s interest is justified," W. WEBSTER replied, “we have held a number of talks on this issue toward the differentiation of COCOM. We want to do something for Poland without sacrificing security at the same time. We want to support you, but we do not want to transfer technology where, for security reasons, it should not be. We appreciate Poland's efforts to become independent of the KGB, but they will not give up attempts to obtain technology."

Asked by the guest for an assessment of the situation in Lithuania, the Prime Minister said: "This is a difficult problem. I hope that [although] there will be some friction, but in the end, Lithuania's independence will be achieved. We expressed our position publicly - we took note of the Lithuanian declaration and expressed the hope that Lithuania and the USSR will regulate their relations. This is a difficult precedent for Gorbachev, and I hope that this will stabilize somehow. Of course, Poland looks at these endeavors with sympathy, although the situation of Poles in Lithuania is complicated, sometimes there are controversies with the Sajudis movement, which we are trying to moderate."

"Gorbachev warned Lithuania," said director WEBSTER, "the Poles are demanding Vilnius."

“Lithuania must guarantee,” the Prime Minister continued, “the Soviet interests. Moscow must recognize their independence. [But] it takes time."

"Will time allow Gorbachev,” said WEBSTER, “to do all this so that he does not lose ground with the hardliners at home. To date, the Lithuanians seem to know how far they can go. We have a lot of Lithuanians in the US. On the one hand, we want to offer give them words of encouragement, but at the same time we are trying to dissuade the Lithuanians from taking to the barricades. Because they would not too much support from anybody. We have had a bad experience when we failed Poles one day." Then the CIA director asked questions about the problems with ethnic groups in Poland, comparable to the Bulgarian-Turkish and Romanian-Hungarian conflicts. Prime Minister T. Mazowiecki said:" Until recently, the existence of national minorities was denied in Poland. We have dropped this practice. I do not think that this could cause any serious conflicts".

"Is there a connection between the existence of a German minority and the recognition of borders?", Director W. WEBSTER asked.

"I do not see it," said T. Mazowiecki, “but Chancellor Kohl saw it in his statement."

"Has the number of Alliance voters strengthened opposition to the Polish Western border in the GDR?", W. WEBSTER inquired.

"Personally, I do not think, the Prime Minister replied, it was a more vote [of confidence] for Kohl, who is pushing for reunification, rather than the border question." He then expressed his concern about the events in Leipzig.

"The elections strengthened Kohl's position as chief of a reunited Germany," W. WEBSTER commented. “After all he did speak in favor of the Polish border."

"He did," T. Mazowiecki replied, “but he [still] should sign something else." He then presented his concerns about the possible application of Article 23 of the Constitution.

"This is the subject for the 2+4 conference," said the CIA director said, “where the USA will back the Polish position.

I have some signals,” he continued, “that your government and intelligence services are interested, as we are, in cooperating with each other in certain areas, such as the fight against terrorism. We will be happy to go in that direction."

Mazowiecki and CIA Director W. Webster discussed relaxing COCOM restrictions and Gorbachev’s response to both Lithuanian independence and German reunification.

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Document Information


Personal papers of Ryszard Wojtkowski. Contributed by Tomasz Kozłowski and translated by Jerzy Giebułtowski.


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The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars