The Ambassador in Poland (Lane) to the Secretary of State
[Received October 28—3:03 p.m.]
477. British Ambassador37 informs me that Oct 25 he told Bierut under instructions from Bevin that it was hoped elections would be held by February; that electoral provisions of Constitution of 1921 and electoral law of 1922 would be upheld; that Popiel’s Christian Labor Party would be given opportunity to organize; and that sufficient newsprint would be made available to all parties.
According to Bentinck, Bierut said that elections could not be held until middle of 1946 due to transport difficulties and impossibility of repatriating Poles from abroad before that time; that electoral provisions cited would be upheld; that he hoped Popiel and Feldczak faction of CLP38 would fuse; and that sufficient newsprint would be furnished all papers although Govt could not subsidize them.
Bentinck said to me he had no confidence in Bierut’s assurances due to latter’s reputation for evasion. He agreed with my personal opinion that it is a mistake for us to urge on Poles a definite date for elections so as not to assume responsibility for results of future conditions which we cannot predict. He said his Govt suggested February because it was Mikolajczyk’s idea.
The coincidence of dates suggested will in my view be helpful neither to Mikolajczyk nor the British Govt and I would suggest that we avoid suggesting any date or approximate date to Polish Govt.