restricted access Document No. 47: Transcript of CPSU CC Politburo Meeting, April 30, 1981
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275 Document No. 47: Transcript of CPSU CC Politburo Meeting April 30, 1981 After another high-level Soviet visit to Warsaw, the Kremlin leadership meets to discuss the results, and finds more reason for worry. Although Mikhail Suslov sounds a self-congratulatory note about the utility of these bilateral meetings, the Poles continue to make what Moscow views as intolerable concessions to the opposition. High on their list of concerns during this period is the “horizontal movement” within the PUWP which aimed at promoting more democratic procedures at all levels without interference from the central authorities. As CPSU ideology chief, Suslov was particularly upset at this stark departure from Leninist doctrine, as indicated below. For his part, Brezhnev gives voice to a feeling of not just frustration but outright distrust in Kania and Jaruzelski that is growing among the Soviet leadership. […] 2. On the results of the negotiations between the CPSU delegation and the PUWP leadership. Brezhnev: As you know, several days ago, following our decision, Cdes. Suslov and Rusakov left for Warsaw. Also part of the delegation was USSR Ambassador to Poland Cde. [Boris] Aristov. In accordance with instructions, the CPSU delegation held a discussion in which members and candidate members of the Politburo and members of the PUWP Secretariat took part from the Polish side. I think that the first conclusion that comes out of the information from the comrades is that we acted properly in sending such a delegation to Warsaw at a time when the Polish comrades were preparing for their plenum and congress. I think that in the future we should also not preclude the possibility that individual Politburo members or a group of members could go [on such a visit], or do as Cdes. Andropov and Ustinov did by meeting somewhere outside Warsaw or Moscow. The value of that kind of thing is undisputable. And now we give the floor to Cde. M. A. Suslov, who will inform us of the results of the discussions with the Polish comrades. Suslov: Our negotiations with the PUWP leadership showed that the Politburo decision concerning our delegation’s trip to Poland was very useful and timely. L. I. Brezhnev’s discussions with Kania and also the discussions held by Cdes. Andropov and Ustinov during their meeting with Kania and Jaruzelski at Brest have played a big role in stabilizing conditions in Poland. For our part, we sharply criticized the actions of the Polish leadership with respect to Solidarity and the anti-socialist elements, their indecisiveness on this matter, and their attempts somehow to smooth over the situation and not focus on the main ques- 276 tions. We expressed ourselves critically with respect to the so-called “horizontal structures.” We particularly emphasized the need for a decisive battle with Solidarity and its reactionary right wing, headed by KOR, which in fact wants to turn Solidarity into a political party. Andropov: The Polish friends, Kania in particular, support the “horizontal structures,” and that will lead, as you know, to the collapse of the party. Suslov: Unquestionably, the “horizontal structures” will sow complete discord within the organizational structure of the PUWP and be utterly at odds with Leninist organizational principles for the construction of a Marxist–Leninist party. Cdes. Kania and Jaruzelski took part in these discussions along with members of the Politburo and the secretaries of the Gdańsk and Katowice voivodeship committees . They all deeply thanked the CPSU CC, and especially L. I. Brezhnev, for their constant concern and assistance. Brezhnev: I believe they are now holding a plenum. Suslov: Their plenum ended early this morning. As far as our advice about not excluding Olszowski, Grabski and other comrades from the plenum, they went along with it. Our criticism has a particular influence on the Polish leadership, especially on matters related to preparations for the congress and on other matters . Of course, the Polish leadership should have a certain amount of trust in us, and there should also be a degree of trust on our part. True, for many it is impossible to believe what they promise they will do, but in any case we should in some way support and encourage them on certain questions. Brezhnev: In general, we have little faith in them since although they listen to us they do not do as we advise. Rusakov: I must say that L. I. Brezhnev’s meeting with our Polish friends had exceptional significance. In addition, the discussions held by Cdes. Andropov and Ustinov played a big...