Polish Foreign Policy under a Non-Communist Government

Prospects and Problems

by Thomas S. Szayna


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This Note analyzes Polish foreign policy directions following the establishment of a government led by non-Communists. It is based both on trends within Polish opposition circles before the government was set up and on actions and foreign policy statements made as of December 1989 by government officials. It also surveys the international political situation in Poland in an attempt to judge support for new foreign policy moves. The author identifies three fundamental points that will guide Polish foreign policy: (1) full respect for sovereignty in Polish-Soviet relations; (2) an opening toward the West, especially toward the United States and the Federal Republic of Germany; and (3) emphasis on human rights and environmental concerns. He concludes that foreign policy will become an important issue, easily exploitable for domestic political purposes at a time of extreme economic readjustments that will produce quite a few losers as well as winners.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation note series. The note was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.