The Polish Provisional Government of National Unity to the Secretary of State 64

Excellency: I have the honor to inform you, that the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity would like to call the attention of Your Excellency to the following facts:

1. Notwithstanding the clearly and unequivocally formulated resolutions of Potsdam, the so-called “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski,65 though now deprived of formal recognition, in fact, still continue to exist and to discharge in a somewhat limited scope their former functions. It is an acknowledged fact, that the so-called “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski still continue to reside in London and to maintain official relations with some diplomatical representatives, by this fact enjoying a series of customary privileges.

2. The so-called “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski determinedly circulate the version, that, notwithstanding their lack of recognition by the Great Powers, they remain in possession of supreme command over the Polish Forces at present in Great Britain and on the Continent. A typical example of this state of affairs is General Bor-Komorowski’s order of the 28th of August 1945, wherein he still styles himself Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Army subordinated to the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski.

The logical consequence thereof is the discriminatory elimination of soldiers and officers who wish to return home, and their confinement to special camps. This, of course, tends to terrorize the rest and to transform the Army with but a recently glorious past, into docile tools spreading unrest and irritation all over Europe.

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3. At the same time, the emissaries of the Arciszewski “Government” well provided with large sums of money, lead among the émigrés Poles, and especially among the Poles in the British and American zones of occupation in Germany, fierce campaigns slandering the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity and the state of things in Poland. That serves as a background for enrolment activities in order to enlist men into military organizations, which cannot obviously lead to anything else but conspiring against peace and organizing all kinds of provocations and outrages, the aim of which is to stir up incidents or raise conflicts between the Allies.

4. The Polish Provisional Government of National Unity are in possession of undeniable proof, that the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski are still yet in position to send their emissaries to Poland and to communicate with them through the wireless.

The Polish authorities have actual proof of the existence in Poland of wireless stations which receive their instructions from the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski. The Polish authorities are furthermore informed of their wave-lengths, their signals and codes.

The said agents of the Arciszewski “Government” in utilizing for their own ends the whole Hitlerite arsenal, endeavour to raise dissensions in the country and to disturb what is desirable to all: the consolidation and the work of peaceful reconstruction. They do so by sowing hatred, trying to provoke anti-semitic riots, opposing the repatriation and the resettlement of the population and exhorting to civil war.

5. It is also not an unimportant fact, that the men of confidence of the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski still continue to exercise their control in several agencies and institutions under the protection of the Treasury Commission, and, that the Arciszewski “Government” still control the activities of the Social Assistance. This undeniably helps to artificially uphold their otherwise dwindling influence among the Polish emigration and, at the same time heavily encumbers the financial position of the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity, to which any form of control over these organizations is denied.

6. The Polish Provisional Government of National Unity are compelled to state, that the state of affairs as above described is not favourable to the bringing about of the so sincerely wished for stability of conditions and rapid return to normal peace-time activities.

The further “de facto” sufferance of the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski and of their having supremacy over the Polish military units—which are being turned into incubators of anti-democratic and fascist ideologies—must cause restlessness and irritation and so must result in what is contradictory to the spirit of the Potsdam resolutions.

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7. Simultaneously, the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity state that, under the resolutions of Yalta and Potsdam to which they have consented, they enforce the principles of democratic freedom, ensure the free activities of democratic parties and render possible the publishing of a vast number of newspapers of various shades of opinion. They have also enacted the amnesty. The Polish Provisional Government of National Unity endeavour to hasten the repatriation of Polish citizens, try to overcome economic difficulties being the results of war and of the huge devastations caused by the German occupation. They also aim at bringing back, in the shortest possible time, normal conditions of life which should enable the having free and unfettered elections to the Diet.

8. In view of what has been said above and in expectation that, at the session of the Council of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs various problems of the post-war period shall be discussed and settled in the spirit of the Potsdam resolutions, the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity have the honour to request to hasten the decision, that by now has matured, namely, to wind up the “Government” of Mr. Arciszewski completely and finally and to deprive them of all the prerogatives which they are still enjoying illegally and to the detriment of the cause of peace.

Especially, in logical consequence to the winding up of the Arciszewski “Government”, the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity expect a decision in the matter of the transfer of command over the Polish Forces abroad to the plenipotentiary representatives of the Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Army. It is understood, that the officers and soldiers who do not wish to pass under the orders of the Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Army should be demobilized and placed in camps without the competence of the Polish Commander-in-Chief.

The Polish Provisional Government of National Unity are deeply convinced, that this way of settling the matter would invaluably contribute to the cause of Peace and to the firm establishment of the democratic system in Poland and in all Europe.

  1. Copy transmitted to the Department as an enclosure to despatch No. 40, October 1, 1945, from Warsaw; in the despatch, Ambassador Lane reported delivery of the Polish note to the American Embassy in London on September 13 for transmission to the Secretary of State, who was in London for the First Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers, September 11–October 2. 1945 (860C.01/10–145). At the Fifth Meeting of the First Plenary Conference of the Council of Foreign Ministers in London, September 15, 1945, Soviet People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov supported the request of the Polish Provisional Government that the question of the Polish émigré government in London be examined by the Council. Consideration of the question was postponed until the Sixth Meeting of the Council on September 17, at which time it was agreed to accept the British proposal that the matter be dealt with through diplomatic channels and only be brought before the next session of the Council if the parties concerned were not satisfied. See vol. ii, pp. 202 and 203.
  2. Tomasz Arciszewski, Prime Minister of the Polish Government in Exile in London. The United States Government recognized the Polish Provisional Government of National Unity on July 5, 1945, and, at the same time, terminated relations with the Polish Government in Exile. For documentation regarding the liquidation of the affairs of the Polish Government in Exile, see Conference of Berlin (Potsdam), vol. i, pp. 714741, and vol. ii, pp. 11041135.