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Download New foundations: The Polish strike wave of 1980-81 epub book
Author: John Hennig
ISBN13: 978-0933522084
Title: New foundations: The Polish strike wave of 1980-81
Format: azw mobi lrf lit
ePUB size: 1246 kb
FB2 size: 1301 kb
DJVU size: 1832 kb
Language: English
Category: Europe
Publisher: Kent Popular Press (1981)
Pages: 85

New foundations: The Polish strike wave of 1980-81 by John Hennig

The Polish crisis of 1980-81, precipitated by the emergence of the anti-communist "Solidarity" movement, marked the penultimate challenge to Soviet control of Eastern Europe before the communist regimes in the area and eventually the Soviet Union itself collapsed ten years later. Yet, unlike on previous such occasions-East Germany in 1953, Hungary in 1956, Czechoslovakia in 1968-the Kremlin abstained from resorting to military force to avert the presumed threat to its vital security interests.

The Lublin 1980 strikes (also known as Lublin July, Polish: Lubelski Lipiec) were the series of workers' strikes in the area of the eastern city of Lublin (People's Republic of Poland), demanding better salaries and lower prices of food products. They began on July 8, 1980, at the State Aviation Works in Świdnik, a town located on the outskirts of Lublin. By mid-July, 1980, some 50,000 local workers from more than 150 enterprises went on strike.

Book Description: 95 documents on the events that represent a pivotal moment in modern Polish and world history: 16 months between August 1980 when the Solidarity trade union was founded and December 1981 when Polish authorities declared martial law and crushed the nationwide opposition movement that had grown up around the union. Transcripts of Soviet and Polish Politburo meetings give a detailed picture of the goals, motivations and deliberations of the leaders of these countries. On July 11, a more serious general strike began in Lublin, a city on the strategic rail line between East Germany and the Soviet Union. December 1980 represented one of the peaks of the Polish crisis, a time when Soviet intervention seemed most likely to occur.

A wave of strikes moved throughout Poland. The government of the time was undecided. Nota bene, during the strike in the shipyard, two holy masses were held and the portrait of John Paul II was placed on a fence. Priests heard confessions in the shipyard during the mass. These are the crops of the ideological work that the PZPR has been cultivating for 35 years!10. 39 W. Jaruzelski, op. ci. p. 383. 40 Tajne dokument. 568.

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The announcement was the signal for a wave of strikes that rolled across most of Polish industry for the next six weeks, to reach its climax in the coastal cities of Gdansk, Gdynia and Szczecin in mid-August. Although the strike movement had no coordinating centre, the workers had developed an information network by which they spread news of their struggles. Delegates from these workplaces, including the Paris Commune shipyard in neighbouring Gdynia and the city’s tram drivers, gathered in the Lenin yard.

The strike wave continued developing into mid October 81. Although the government’s summer announcements were clearly threatening, it was not until 13th December 1981 that the clamp down of military rule was undertaken. The struggles of 1980-81 were enriched by the previous experience of the working class in Poland. However, they were not an isolated ‘Polish’ expression of the class struggle, being the culmination of an international wave of struggles from 1978 to 1981. As we have seen, during the summer of 1980 the Polish proletariat was able to create, spontaneously, the most powerful and effective forms of class struggle precisely because the social buffers that exist in Western countries were lacking.

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Among these factors were the intensified and protracted Iran-Iraq conflict and the deterioration of the Polish situation. None of these problems were settled during 1980. economy also falling into a recession, following the various European nations. e) Between China and Western Europe, efforts were made to strengthen relations in the second half of 1980, following the establishment of a new Chinese leadership under Premier Zhao Ziyang. Italian President Pertini and French President Giscard d'Estaing visited China. f) As for Sino-Soviet relations, the 30-year Treaty of Alliance between the two countries expired in April 1980.

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