Dictionary of East European History since 1945

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transfer of the Polish population from the east and the expulsion of Germans from the western lands. Mikolajczyk argued that, although he was head of the government-in- exile, he had no authority to agree to any such resolution, since it would have to be approved by the postwar Polish parliament. He also pointed out that the proposed new borders would make Poland utterly dependent on the Soviet Union for its future security. However, after his visit to Moscow, Mikolajczyk became convinced that Poland had no other choice except to acquiesce in the proposal.

In April 1943, after the discovery of the graves of massacred Polish officers in the Katyn woods (see Katyn Woods Massacre), the London Poles were denounced by Joseph Stalin, and relations with the Soviet government were broken off. When three out of the four parties participating in the London-based Polish government-in-exile rejected the new borders on November 24, 1944, Mikolajczyk resigned as prime minister.

In June 1945, Mikolajczyk returned to Warsaw and was named copremier with the communist Wladislaw Gomulka (see Gomulka, Wladislaw) in the provisional Polish government, but he was soon outmaneuvered by the communists and received a barrage of false accusations. In the 1947 elections, conducted under great communist terror, the Peasant party was a loser. When the attacks on Mikolajczyk's person were renewed, he fled to the West once again.


Bregman Aleksander, ed. Faked Elections in Poland as Reported by Foreign Observers ( London, 1947); Bliss Lane A., I Saw Poland Betrayed ( New York, 1948); Korbonski Andrzej , "Poland 1918-1990," in Joseph Held, ed. The Columbia History of Eastern Europe in the Twentieth Century ( New York, 1992); Mikolaj-czyk Stanislaw, The Rape of Poland: Patterns of Soviet Aggression ( New York, 1948).

Military Policies in Communist Poland. Nowhere in Eastern Europe was Soviet intrusion into society as open and as brutal as it was in the Polish military establishment. Most Polish officers and noncommissioned officers remained loyal to the exiled government in London after the defeat by Germany. About 14,000 regular and reservist officers were captured by the Soviet army in 1939, and most of them were massacred in the Katyn woods in 1940 (see Katyn Woods Massacre).

In 1943, Polish communists in exile in the Soviet Union formed the Kosciuszko division and recruited former prisoners of war into the ranks. The division was eventually joined by various communist guerrilla bands who were fighting the Germans within Poland. When the war ended, Soviet officers, who commanded all the Polish forces, were recalled to the Soviet Union and were replaced by reliable communist cadres.

After the establishment of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) on April 4, 1949, Joseph Stalin decided to strengthen his hold on the Polish armed forces. On November 6, Marshal Konstanty K. Rokossowski (see Rokossowski, Konstanty), a Soviet officer of Polish ancestry who had spent four years in the Soviet


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