Polskie Dokumenty Dyplomatyczne 1941 [Polish Diplomatic Documents 1941]
Volume Editor: Jacek Tebinka
976 + LXIV pp.
The nineteenth volume in the publishing series Polish Diplomatic Documents covers the diplomatic service’s activities in 1941.
The Polish foreign policy of the time was hugely influenced by the changing international developments. Following Germany’s attack of the USSR on 22 June and the US entry into the war (in response to the Japanese assault on 7 December), an anti-Nazi coalition came into being, leading many to refer to 1941 as a year of breakthrough in the war effort.
The most important event for Poland (affecting the domestic affairs, too) was the so-called Sikorski-Mayski treaty, resulting in a normalisation of relations with the Kremlin and formation of the Polish Army on Soviet territory.
The Polish authorities sought to keep as high profile as possible in relations with the Allies, with as many as possible diplomatic and consular posts. The biggest priority for Polish missions at the time was to bring relief to Polish refugees (whatever their ethnicity), who could be found not only Europe but also in faraway places such as Australia, Japan and Latin America.
The Polish diplomatic service also took measures seeking to organise relief for Poles staying at home, in occupied Poland; and another major line was an informational campaign to draw the attention of the international public opinion to the conduct of the occupying forces.
Much effort was devoted to reach the Allies and the world public opinion with the message that the Polish state must be restored, and a programme was presented of expanding Polish territory at Germany’s expense.
The volume presents materials kept at the Polish Institute and Sikorski Museum in London, and the Central Archives of Modern Records (AAN) in Warsaw (primarily, a microfilmed Hoover Institute, Stanford, collection available at AAN). Other content comes from the Józef Piłsudski Institute of America and the Polish Institute of Arts and Sciences of America, both in New York, and also from the UK’s National Archives in Kew.
The 407 documents in the volume, presented in chronological order, come with a preface, brief summaries of each document, a list of acronyms used, an annex presenting changes in the structure of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and indexes (by name and by subject).