May 31, 1989
The Polish government intensified its charges that the United States is improperly helping Solidarity's election campaign--an accusation Solidarity and U.S. diplomats denied. A State Department spokesman said Congress has authorized $2 million for the trade union for two years, but U.S. spokesman Richard Boucher said, "We're not interfering with the campaign." After a government statement accused Western diplomats of helping the opposition, an official spokesman said the "way of behaving of those diplomats unambiguously showed that they were taking part in the electoral campaign in favor of the opposition."
June 18, 1986
Poland arrested Anna Walentynowicz, 57, the Gdansk crane operator whose firing in 1980 sparked the birth of the Solidarity independent trade union. She was accused of causing public unrest. The step, part of a new crackdown on the remaining symbols of the outlawed union, was announced by government spokesman Jerzy Urban.
April 13, 1989 |
Lech Walesa--whose Solidarity trade union helped force the government to adopt sweeping, democratic reforms--said today that he will run for the newly created post of president. "I am a man of big interests," he said. "I'm being strongly pressed (by supporters). . . . And I plan to be a candidate for the highest government body (the presidency) that is going to be in Poland." Before today, the electrician, who won the Nobel Peace Prize after founding Solidarity, had said he wanted to concentrate on union issues.
May 29, 1989 |
As the election campaign in Poland moves into its final week, Waclaw Wojciechowski, 42, has come to realize his greatest liability--he is a candidate of the PZPR, the Communist Party that has ruled Poland for the last 40 years. As he and others here have discovered, this is such grim baggage for a Polish politician to haul about that the usual official symbols of the "worker's party"--the red flags and the hammer and sickle--are nowhere to be found on poster or leaflet. Even the innocuous party initials, if present at all, are set in type discreet enough to strain the eyes.
September 22, 1986 |
Thousands of Polish workers cheered Solidarity leader Lech Walesa and waved defiant banners of the outlawed labor union Sunday at a pilgrimage to Poland's most sacred Roman Catholic shrine. Church officials, however, withdrew permission at the last minute for Walesa to read a brief statement to a crowd estimated at more than 20,000 massed outside the 14th-Century Jasna Gora monastery. The statement was edited to remove a critical reference to the government and read instead by a clergyman.
April 21, 1989 |
Lech Walesa, leader of Solidarity and champion of Poland's new political course, told Italian political leaders today that his country needs investment, rather than aid. "Poland has all the figures to be part of of Europe, but it needs investments, more than aid--investments to create companies and a market," the Polish labor leader told Premier Ciriaco De Mita. In a 35-minute meeting with the premier, Walesa said Solidarity intends to fight economic centralism and work for political, economic and social pluralism.