860c.01/6–2845: Telegram

No. 492
The Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Harriman) to the Secretary of State ad interim

2313. Secret for the Acting Secretary.

Following is briefly my reaction to the Polish Agreement. I am somewhat disappointed that the outsiders did not get seven instead of five posts in the new Govt—one additional Socialist and one from the Christian Labor Party. I believe this could have been done if the outside Socialists had taken a stronger position in the negotiations with the Warsaw reps. Zuławski if his health had permitted would [Page 728] have been accepted. There appears to be a gentlemen’s agreement that the Christian Labor leader, Popiel will be admitted to the Govt on his return from London. The Socialists also hope to consolidate their party and obtain stronger representation in the Govt at a later date.

I feel that Mikołajczyk is better off not to be Prime Minister under the present difficult situation both economic and political and that he has as strong a position as he could hope for as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture which latter post will necessitate his traveling around the country. With four new members of the Peasant Party in important posts in the Govt he should be in a position to exercise substantial influence.

The matter which gives all concern is the retention of the independent Ministry of Internal Security under a Communist.1 This Ministry is developing a secret police on the Russian style. The manner in which this Ministry is administered is the crux of whether Poland will have her independence, whether reasonable personal freedoms will be permitted and whether reasonably free elections can be held.

Mikołajczyk does not expect the full freedoms which he would like for Poland and the Polish people. On the other hand he is hopeful that through the strength of the Peasant Party a reasonable degree of freedom and independence can be preserved now and that in time after conditions in Europe become more stable and Russia turns her attention to her internal development controls will be relaxed and Poland will be able to gain for herself her independence of life as a nation even though he freely accepts that Poland’s security and foreign policy must follow the lead of Moscow.

During the course of the negotiations I spent a good many hours with the principal Warsaw leaders, Bierut, Morawski and Gomulka. … Mikołajczyk recognizes the importance of the Communist Party and of these men particularly the two Communists in the all important relations with Russia and says that he is ready to work closely with them even though they represent only a very small fraction of the Polish people.

I feel that Mikołajczyk and his associates have been wise in accepting the best deal they could make on their own and not coming to Clark Kerr and myself for direct assistance on improving the present agreement since it is the future decisions that are all important. It is impossible to predict the trend of events in Poland but I believe that the stage is set as well as can be done at the present time and that if we continue to take a sympathetic interest in Polish affairs and are reasonably generous in our economic relations there is a fair chance that things will work out satisfactorily from our standpoint.

  1. Stanisław Radkiewicz.