Transcript

THE FOREIGN SECRETARY reported that he had now received a further communication from the Polish Government. This was under examination, and [the Foreign Secretary] sought clarification or guarantees on a number of important and difficult points.

The following points were made in the course of the discussion which followed:

(a) Did the Russians really want an independent Poland? Or had they in view a puppet Government under Russian control and a Soviet Republic? The Foreign Secretary said there were increasing signs which pointed in the latter direction (in other words, he thought they wanted to make Poland a Soviet Republic under their influence).

(c) If no settlement were now reached between Russia and Poland, and the present Polish Government were in consequence to break up, the result would be a certain strain, or even some degree of estrangement, between Russia and the Western Powers. This would be calamitous, and might carry in it the seeds of future wars. It was therefore incumbent upon us (it was our responsibility) to make every endeavour to secure an arrangement if possible. Further, there was no ground for holding that Russia would not in fact adhere to an arrangement reached, or that she took a light view of treaty obligations. And she had much to gain by maintaining the good relations established at the Moscow and Teheran Conferences. Generally we had reason to believe that Russia wanted to co-operate with the United States, and with this country.