File No. 763.72/12497
The President of the Polish National Committee ( Dmowski ) to the Secretary of State
Sir: In connection with my letter of the 18th instant, in which I have respectfully submitted to the decision of the Government of the United States the question of recognizing the Polish Army, under the supreme political authority of the Polish National Committee, as autonomous, allied and co-belligerent, I now have the honor to communicate the contents of the letter dated October 15, 1918, from [Page 880] Mr. Balfour to the representative of the Polish National Committee in London:
I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note of the 25th instant, in which you announce the creation of a single Polish National Army and the appointment by the Polish National Committee of General Joseph Haller as its commander in chief. At the same time you request His Majesty’s Government to recognize Polish forces engaged in fighting the Central Powers as possessing status of a co-belligerent army. I have the honor to state that His Majesty’s Government gladly acceded to this request and they henceforth recognize the Polish Army as autonomous, allied and co-belligerent.
I take this opportunity of informing you that His Majesty’s Government have not failed to follow with interest and appreciation the unremitting efforts which the Polish National Committee has made since its recognition by the Allied countries in fortifying its compatriots throughout the world in their resistance to Central Powers and to all compromise with them in the solution of the Polish question. The confidence of His Majesty’s Government in the loyalty of the Committee to the Allied countries remains unshaken.
His Majesty’s Government have repeatedly announced their desire to see the creation of a united and independent Polish state and they were glad to join in the declaration by the great powers at Versailles on June 3, 1918, that the creation of such a state with free access to the sea constitutes one of the conditions of a solid and just peace. I need hardly assure you that the sympathies of this country have been and are with the people of Poland of whatever politic class or creed, in all the sufferings to which they have been subjected during the war. It admires their firm refusal to allow Germany and Austria-Hungary to dictate the future status and boundaries of their country and it looks forward to a time when the present provisional arrangements will come to an end and a Poland free and united will shape its own constitution according to the wishes of its people. That this happy moment may be near at hand is the most earnest wish of His Majesty’s Government.
I have the honor, etc.
I have also the honor to inform you that Baron Sonnino, Italian Minister for Foreign Affairs, in a letter to the Polish National Committee, recognized the Polish troops fighting on the side of the Allies as a single, autonomous, allied and co-belligerent Polish Army.
I remain [etc.]