Tuesday, August 25, 2015

ADSS 1.109 Papee to Tardini: German-Soviet Pact

ADSS 1.109 Casimir Papeé, Polish Ambassador to the Holy See, to Domenico Tardini, Secretariat of State.

Reference: AES 6836/39

Location and date: Rome, 22.08.1939

Summary statement: News of an imminent German-Soviet Pact will not change the balance of power in Europe.  Russia will not get involved in a European conflict and would not invade Poland.

Language: Italian


Written note by Monsignor Tardini.

The Polish Ambassador came this morning.  He said to me:
1. That he does not place a great deal of importance on the German-Soviet Pact.
2. That Russia wishes to remain outside a European conflict.
3. Therefore Russia itself would not intervene against Poland.

During the afternoon the Ambassador sent me the following note:

The announcement of the imminent conclusion of a non-aggression pact between Germany and the USSR, did not make much impression in Warsaw political circles since, on the whole, this does not bring about any changes in the balance of power in Europe.  This announcement demonstrates the wish, on the part of the Russians, to withdraw from the European theatre, a fact that had already been clearly stated during the Anglo-French-Russian negotiations.  This does not have any influence at all and does not alter Poland’s attitude. (2)

(1) Casimir Papeé (1889-1979), Polish Ambassador to the Holy See 1939-58.

(2) Papeé appears to be speaking in accord with instructions received from Warsaw.  The British Ambassador wrote to Lord Halifax: “M. Beck considers this does not make much real difference to the situation, as the Soviet government have been playing a double game for long past.  It made no difference to Poland’s attitude.” DBFP, Series 3, Volume 7, n123, pp 115-16.

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