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395 Document No. 72: Transcript of CPSU CC Politburo Meeting on Rusakov’s Trip to Eastern Europe October 29, 1981 In this discussion, the Politburo mulls over the growing realization that Jaruzelski is proving to be just as passive as his predecessor. They decide that they may have to summon him to a meeting. Another growing problem is the need to provide economic help to Poland which is exacerbating shortages in other sectors. Konstantin Rusakov , a member of the Politburo Commission on Poland, offers a fascinating account of a recent visit to several Eastern European countries where each party leader has made clear his disappointment over Moscow’s decision to cut back on oil deliveries for the sake of Poland. The GDR’s Erich Honecker was especially outspoken, prompting a mix of reactions at this session. The Poles, meanwhile, have also been asking for military support. But both Andropov and Ustinov are unequivocal that there can be no question of introducing Soviet troops into the country. […] 2. On the results of Cde. K. V. Rusakov’s trip to the GDR, ČSSR, HPR and BPR. Brezhnev: All the comrades present here know that at the instruction of the CPSU CC Politburo Cde. Rusakov left for the GDR, Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Bulgaria to inform our friends on several matters, in particular on the measures we have taken and will take in connection with the Polish events. Cde. Rusakov went to those countries and reported to the Politburo on the results of his travels in a note, which you have. Perhaps Konstantin Viktorovich has something to add to what he put in his note. In that case, please do. Rusakov: I held discussions with the leaders of four fraternal states, as instructed by the Politburo. The talks dealt with two questions: the first question related to Poland. In my note the course of the discussions with the leaders of the fraternal countries on the Polish question is laid out in detail. One can say that all the leaders of the fraternal parties are unanimously in agreement with us regarding the measures we are taking with respect to Poland, and also with respect to the situation that has unfolded in Poland. In a word, one can say that on this there is total unanimity of views. During the course of the talks the leaders of the fraternal countries broached economic questions as well. The main question concerned a cutback in supplies of fuel, especially oil. Cdes. Kádár, Husák and Zhivkov, even though they said that this would be difficult for them, nevertheless treated our proposal with understanding , and responded to our request by saying that they would find a solution to the situation and would accept what we proposed. For the sake of further 396 clarity, I asked the comrades the following question: may I report to the Politburo that you agree with the point of view I expressed? The comrades answered, yes, you may. My conversation with Cde. Honecker took a different shape. He immediately said that a cut in oil supplies would be unacceptable for the GDR; that it would cause serious damage to the national economy and the GDR as a whole; that it would strike severely the GDR economy; and that we [sic] would be utterly unable to make ends meet. He even declared that they could not accept this and asked for a written reply from Cde. Brezhnev to two letters they had sent. In this way, the question became very complicated and it was essentially never resolved. Cde. Honecker again produced as proof that they provide us with bismuth and uranium, that they maintain a Group of Forces, and that things are becoming especially complicated because the Polish People’s Republic is not supplying coal, which is supposed to be coming from us. In this regard, as Honecker put it, the German people’s living standard is dropping significantly and we do not know how to explain it. They will have to review all plan targets. Brezhnev: I think that we should approve the discussions Cde. Rusakov conducted with Cdes. Honecker, Husák, Kádár and Zhivkov, and in our subsequent practical work take into account the impressions expressed by our comrades on the Polish question. As you know, we decided to limit oil supplies to our friends. They all took it with difficulty and Cde. Honecker, for example, as you see, is still waiting for an answer to the letters he sent us...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9786155211157
Related ISBN
9789637326844
MARC Record
OCLC
191932687
Pages
602
Launched on MUSE
2014-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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