The Secretary of State to the Minister in Poland (Gibson)
131. Yours 118, March 1st 6 p.m.42 You are instructed to present the following note to the Government of Poland.
“The Government of the United States has observed with deep regret a number of instances of opposition and arbitrary interference by responsible Polish officials towards reputable American enterprises engaged in carrying on their legitimate business pursuits in Poland. Bearing in mind the great difficulties which Poland has been facing during the past year in the formation of her Government, it has been assumed that this regrettable situation was to be ascribed to a lack of governmental organization and not to any formulated policy of opposition. However, the growing number of cases which have recently been brought to the attention of the American Government where Americans have been denied that consideration which is to be expected for the citizens of a friendly Government, have raised in the minds of American citizens and of the American Government officials a question as to whether the Polish Government is in fact countenancing a policy of hostility toward American business.
The American Government is the more surprised at this attitude in that the Polish Government, through its representatives in America, has been systematically encouraging American business interests to establish trade relations with Poland. It has been repeatedly declared by the Polish Government and her accredited representatives that not until Poland succeeds in reestablishing her industries, export trade and banking connections, and thereby make[making] herself independent of foreign relief measures, will her economic and political future be made secure. The soundness of these statements is so obvious that the American Government has assumed that they represent a sincere expression of governmental policy and that reputable Americans desirous of establishing mutually profitable relations would find a friendly welcome in Poland.
The Polish Government has in its possession correspondence on a number of cases where Americans have been either denied permission to carry on business, or refused licenses for exports, or to establish agencies or branches. Some of these people have left Poland with the [Page 412] unwilling conviction that either the Polish authorities do not desire them to do business or by their dilatory tactics have made it impossible for them to do so. The Polish Government must realize that the effect produced upon American business by these reports must inevitably be unfortunate as to their practical results. American citizens do not desire preferential treatment nor do they seek unusual privileges. On the other hand, it can hardly be expected that the sympathetic responsiveness of the American Government and its people towards Poland’s requirements and problems will continue undiminished if it becomes undeniably apparent that the Polish Government is neglecting to encourage and to develop sound business connections of trade and exchange, and that the repeated avowals of Polish need of American assistance are not realized in the treatment of American citizens coming on commercial errands to Poland. Furthermore, unless there is a manifest departure from the present attitude, my Government will feel obliged, as a matter of duty to its citizens, to inform American business interests and individuals who apply for passports for Poland of the present hostile attitude of officials of the Polish Government towards American business interests.
In thus frankly bringing to Your Excellency’s attention my Government’s concern at the unfortunate situation which is seen to be developing, I am directed to say that my Government trusts that effective steps may be taken to safeguard those enterprises whose legitimate activities are, according to the statements of your Government, essential to the economic rehabilitation and the future prosperity of your country.”
- Not printed.↩