POLAND: RIGIDITY AND RESTIVENESS

Created: 4/23/1982

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SPECIAL ANALYSES

POLAND: Rigidity and Restiveness

As martial lav enters its fifth month, the regime seems no closer now than in December to finding workable solutions to Poland' political and economic problems. Increased hostility toward the authorities, the lack of action by the government, and the steady deterioration of the standard of living have given rise to some popular resistance and new pressure from the Church. Although some conciliatory gesture could be under dieoueeiot, the regime's response to these pressures will be continued reliance on coercion. The Central Committee may ehed some light on thepartyfeuduig and on party leader Jaruselskl's near-term plane. 1

The predominant attitude among the people remains one of disgruntled resignation. Nevertheless, there recently have been signs of increasing defiance. These include several short work stoppages, protests byand intellectuals over the firing of the popular rector of Warsaw University,rlef--and probablyby tho clandestine Radio Solidarity onpril that reflected the ingenuity and tenacity of Solidarity activists.

The Church also has put the governmentind byarefully crafted program for national accord Although it isestatement of old demands, the proposal reflects the Church's determination to push the regime to moderate its policies. In addition, it calls attention tothe regime's failure to devise its own program.

The authorities also can find little satisfaction with recent economic performance. Small increases in production in February and March and the rebound inhavo been largely offset by the growth of industrial capacity that is going unused because of shortages of imported Western materials and equipment.

^ percent decline in real income this year would cause additional unrest amonq the workers. The food situation is no longer gettin^^*

become ^

Wo Hew Policy Initiatives

tBethe authorities seem to oe impeded by the same sterile thinkinq and burcaucrarir maneuvering that have afflicted previous regime" SltoSS1 evJdeatlysfieS, howeverriT" the SSlillV^contral Political control, and histPreserve it probably will prevent him rrom

am^rfiT i* the fe?imo believe that the repressive

Jo? r 0JftMrtial Uwtained" possibly SfiXIJff: to contain popular disaffection and deter

h^Vi"8their politicalltfM;. Tne government appears to beosition to

anno."P'^on, and it ha.3 8tifffr, Bf>tences on Solidarity activistsof martial law offenses. I

8 EffS! overrule is another

W6!; Politburo member Olszewskiaruzelski personally and complained about the incompetence of Inexperienced military Olszewski's supporters claim that the party remains uncertain what direction It should take and is

*oUlltee

an

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2

'on Che other hand, are simirariy criticallaming him for inept handling of the dissolution of the Polish Journalist Association. He evidently is being urged to become foreign minister again, but he will resist accepting that politically unimportant post.

Altnough tne Soviets wouia ixko toeturn to normal party rule, they clearlytable Poland under military rule to an erratic Poland under civilian rule.

Political and Economic Prospects

If the military regime comes under increasedit would be more likely to resort to its familiar tactics of coercion than to seek political solutions. The people are becoming less afraid of military rule, and this may lead to more *requent_deflance, although not necessarily greater violence.

broader opposition to tho regime probably will not seriously threaten the regime's control, it will encourage more political infighting and reinforce the position of hardline elements who oppose ending martial law restrictions. To encourage West Europeans to reduce sanctions and grant credits, the government may considerarge number of internees, reducing someorillingness to accepttrade unions. It might even formally abolish martial law, although tight security controls would be maintained.

pril 2

Original document.

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