860C.001 Moscicki, Ignacy/38: Telegram

The Minister in Rumania (Gunther) to the Secretary of State

358. My 355, October 25, 4 p.m. Last night I had an opportunity informally to sound out the Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs Cretziano on this question. He was very emphatic that Rumania could not afford to give an excuse to either or both Germany and [Page 701]Russia to invade or otherwise make things more uncomfortable for Rumania such as would be afforded by the release now of ex-President Moscicki. He stressed the anger of the German Government over Moscicki’s action in resigning and designating his successor while in Rumania and told me of violent attacks in that connection in the German press upon Mr. Gafencu, the Rumanian Minister for Foreign Affairs. He is now informed that it is the intention to move ex-President Moscicki in the next day or two to Craiova. Speaking to him of rumors that ex-President Moscicki might be assassinated by Gestapo or OGPU agents he smiled and said but why should they want “one less President of Poland”. He added that the ex-President was being well guarded not only by their agents but by the Poles themselves and expressed the view that it would not be easy to assassinate him.

I have never heard either from his son nor from the Polish Ambassador here that ex-President Moscicki has any desire to go now to the United States but he does want to go to Switzerland for a variety of reasons. For one thing the ex-President, apart from Polish, speaks no language but German and is reluctant to use that in Rumania.

Your telegram number 208, October 25, noon, just received, would seem to have crossed my 355, October 25, 4 p.m. In the event that, in view of this telegram and my 355, October 25, 4 p.m., you have decided that the President’s message should be delivered, I can see no harm provided that you do not mind a negative or evasive reply. Also I can foresee the possibility that the King might ask me whether, should ex-President Moscicki be liberated and result in punitive action by Germany and/or Russia, you would be prepared to do at least as much as you have done for Finland. May I respectfully request further instructions.

Gunther