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The Polish Miracle

- Abstract

IT WAS a Sunday evening in the middle of last August. Two Warsaw journalists were plying me with excellent French brandy and even better Polish stories, in the Hotel Bristol where I had just returned from a lengthy and exhausting tour of the Polish countryside. “Have you heard our latest joke?” one of the journalists asked. “Ulbricht and Novotny have just proposed an extension of the Rapacki plan. The atom-free zone in Central Europe should be made meat-free as well.

“And let me beg you, if I may be serious for one moment,” the story-teller added, “not to embarrass us in anything you write about your trip, by odious comparisons between the food surpluses our free peasants are producing and the shortages created by Czech and German collectivization. Agriculture is one Polish success we don’t want to see advertised-particularly in Western newspapers.”

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