CZECHOSLOVAKIA: PARTY FACTIONALISM OVER POLAND

Created: 11/21/1980

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

CZECHOSLOVAKIA: Party Factionalism Over Poland

Cseahoslovah leaders appertntly have differed over how toto then Poland, out Politburo member Bilak and otherdogmatic leaders seem to have prevailed thus far. fJJ>

Bilak evidently took the lead ln reversing the more conciliatory line toward Polandentral committee meeting in early October. He set forth the position that "antisocialists" are in the ascendancy in Poland and the party is in danger of losing control. Accordingormer party official, Bilak 'catalyzed- the meetingowerful speech characterizing developments in Poland as "counterrevolutionary." Although this approach did net have wide support, Bilak apparently even swayed party leadei ilusak intoougher position. emm*>

The ability of Bilak and the other hardliners to stay on top of this issue will largely influence the fate of the new economic reform program scheduled toanuary. Bilak reportedly is arguing that with "counterrevolution" rampant in Poland, now is not the time for "experiments." The reforms have strong support within the party, however,ompromise in either their scope or timing makes their implementation more likelyancellation. fMMi

Many officials are concerned over Czechoslovakia's own economic difficulties and consumer shortages and apparently are resisting giving assistance to Poland. Czechoslovak aid to date has consisted of only about half of the amount of foodstuffs requested.

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