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294 Document No. 50: CPSU CC Letter to the PUWP CC June 5, 1981 After months of mounting frustration at their inability to get through to Kania and Jaruzelski, the Kremlin decided to raise the stakes by presenting this formal communication to the entire Polish leadership. Its effect was amplified by recollections of a similar letter to the Czechoslovak leadership in July 1968 just before the Sovietled invasion. In its sweeping portrayal of the dangers facing the PUWP and Poland itself, the letter points to the particular threat posed by the upcoming Polish party congress which Moscow fears will be used by “forces hostile to socialism” to undercut the party and reduce Soviet influence. Whether the Kremlin passed discreet signals to hard-liners such as Tadeusz Grabski, or whether they simply took their cue from the letter, the congress featured an overt attempt to oust Kania from office (see next document). But the move failed when other senior party members rallied to support the first secretary against what they perceived as patent outside interference in Polish affairs. Kania’s resulting boost in standing thus was a further blow to Moscow’s attempts to force the Poles to get tough on the opposition. “The Offensive of Anti-socialist Forces Threatens Our Joint Security” Dear comrades, the CPSU Central Committee is writing this letter to you feeling deeply concerned about the future of socialism in Poland and about Poland as a free and independent country. Our action is dictated by the interest which we entertain as party members in the affairs of the party of Polish communists, the entire fraternal Polish nation and socialist Poland as a member of the Warsaw Pact and CMEA. Soviet and Polish communists fought side by side against fascism and have been linked throughout the postwar years. Our party and the Soviet people have helped their Polish comrades to build a new life. We cannot remain unconcerned about the mortal danger which now looms over the Polish people’s revolutionary achievements . We say this openly: Certain trends in the development of the Polish People’s Republic, especially in the ideological sphere and with respect to the previous leadership’s economic policy, have already aroused our concern for several years. In complete accordance with the spirit of the relations existing between the CPSU and the Polish United Workers’ Party, we discussed these subjects with [Polish] leaders during talks at the highest level and at other meetings. Unfortunately , these friendly warnings and some profoundly critical statements made within the PUWP itself were not taken into account and were even ignored. As a 295 result, a profound crisis has arisen in Poland which has spread through the country ’s entire political and economic life. We have fully understood the changing of the entire PUWP leadership, the efforts to overcome certain grave errors connected with the violation of principles of socialist construction with the object of restoring confidence in the party on the part of the masses, above all the working class, and the strengthening of socialist democracy. Since the first days of the crisis we believed that it was a matter of importance that the party oppose in a determined manner any attempts by the enemies of socialism to take advantage of the difficulties which had appeared to further their long-term aims. However, this was not done. Continual concessions to anti-socialist forces and their demands have led to a situation in which the PUWP has been falling back step by step under the pressure of the internal counter-revolution, which has been supported by imperialist foreign centers of diversion. A Criminal Plot Against People’s Power The situation has not only become dangerous but has led the country into a critical situation. It is impossible to assess it differently. The enemies of socialist Poland do not conceal their identity nor, especially, do they conceal their intentions. They are waging a struggle for power and are already in the process of achieving it. They have been gaining control of one position after another. The counter-revolution has been using Solidarity’s extremist faction as a strike force. By deceiving them, it has involved workers who have joined a vocational trade union in a criminal plot against the people’s power. A wave of anticommunism and anti-Sovietism is developing, imperialist forces are making increasingly bold attempts to interfere in Poland’s domestic affairs. The serious danger which looms over socialism in Poland also constitutes a threat to the very...


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