The guts of the British note of 28 August, once all the verbiage is cut away, is this:
In the view of His Majesty's Government it follows that the next step should be the initiation of direct discussions between the German and Polish Governments on a basis which would include the principles stated above, namely, the safeguarding of Poland's essential interests and the securing of the settlement by an international guarantee.
They have already received a definite assurance from the Polish Government that they are prepared to enter into discussions on this basis, and His Majesty's Government hope the German Government would for their part also be willing to agree to this course.
The German response, made on 29 August, was, in essence, if the Polish Government claims that it is prepared to enter into discussions on the basis of the British principles, let it send a plenipotentiary urgently, ie tomorrow, to negotiate on proposals that we will prepare.
The German Government justified its requirement for negotiations to begin immediately by the fact that the situation was very tense, with the German and Polish armies poised for hostilities, which could break out at any moment.
Note that the German Government did not demand that the Polish Government accept the German proposals that had not yet been formulated. It just asked the Polish Government to indicate its willingness to begin negotiating seriously by sending a plenipotentiary to Berlin urgently.
The real issue is not whether the Polish Government had enough time to consider the German proposals, but whether it was ever at any time prepared to consider them seriously and to enter into negotiations on the basis of them.
A broadcast made by Radio Warsaw at 11 PM on 31 August, rejecting the proposals out of hand, suggests that the Polish Government would never have been prepared to negotiate seriously, no matter how much time it was given, and that it preferred war to negotiation, preferably after delaying conflict for as long as possible.
A German-language translation of that broadcast was published as Document 16 on page 23 in the German White Book, which can be found online here:http://archive.org/stream/Weissbuch-Urk ... 1/mode/2up
Here is the German-language text of Document 16, with my translation:
16. Meldung des polnischen Rundfunksenders Warschau vom 31. August 1939, abends 23 Uhr
Die heutige Bekanntmachung des deutschen offiziellen Communiques hat die Ziele und Absichten der deutschen Politik klar gezeigt. Es beweist die offenen Aggressionsabsichten Deutschlands gegenüber Polen. Die Bedingungen, unter denen das Dritte Reich bereit ist, mit Polen zu verhandeln, lauten: Danzig kehrt sofort zum Reich zurück. Pommerellen mit den Städten Bromberg und Graudenz unterliegt einem Plebiszit, wobei alle Deutschen, die nach dem Jahre 1918 aus irgendwelchen Gründen von dort ausgewandert sind, hineingelassen werden sollen. Polnisches Militär und Polizei evakuiert Pommerellen. Die Polizei Englands, Frankreichs, Italiens und der Sowjetunion übernimmt die Gewalt. Nach Ablauf von 12 Monaten findet das Plebiszit statt. Das Gebiet der Halbinsel Hela wird vom Plebiszit gleichfalls erfaßt. Gdingen ist als polnische Stadt ausgeschlossen. Unabhängig vom Ausgang des Plebiszits wird eine exterritoriale Straße in der Breite eines Kilometers gebaut ...
Die deutsche Agentur gibt bekannt, daß der Termin für die Aufnahme dieser Bedingungen gestern abgelaufen ist. Deutschland hat vergeblich auf einen Abgesandten Polens gewartet. Die Antwort waren die militärischen Anordnungen der polnischen Regierung.
Keine Worte können jetzt mehr die Aggressionspläne der neuen Hunnen verschleiern. Deutschland strebt die Herrschaft über Europa an und durchstreicht mit einem bisher nicht dagewesenen Zynismus die Rechte der Völker. Dieser unverschämte Vorschlag beweist deutlich, wie notwendig die militärischen Anordnungen der polnischen Regierung gewesen sind.
16. Announcement by the Polish radio station Warsaw on 31 August, at 11:00 PM
The proclamation today of the official German communiqué has clearly revealed the goals and intentions of German policy. It proves the openly aggressive intentions of Germany toward Poland. The conditions under which Germany is prepared to negotiate with Poland read: Danzig returns immediately to the Reich. Pomerelia with the cities Graudenz (Grudziadz) and Bromberg (Bydgoszcz) is subject to a plebiscite to which are admitted all Germans who emigrated from there after 1918 for any reason whatever. Polish military and police evacuate Pomerelia. The police of Britain, France, Italy and the Soviet Union assume power. The plebiscite takes place after the elapse of 12 months. The area of the Hela peninsula is likewise included in the plebiscite. Gdynia is excluded as a Polish city. Independently of the result of the plebiscite, an extraterritorial road one kilometre wide will be built........
The German agency announces that the period for the acceptance of these conditions expired yesterday. Germany waited in vain for a Polish emissary. The answer was the military ordinances of the Polish Government.
No words can conceal any more the plans for aggression of the new Huns. Germany is striving for domination over Europe and is cancelling the rights of the peoples with a cynicism that has never existed until now. This shameless proposal proves clearly how necessary were the military ordinances of the Polish Government.
The full text of the German proposals can be found on pages 21 and 22 of the German White Book, at the link above. Participants in this discussion may read them and decide for themselves the degree to which those proposals were reasonable and balanced, and took account of the legitimate Polish interest in access to a seaport. I can provide a translation if required.
It is clear that the Polish Government would have rejected the German proposals, no matter when they were presented or how much time it had to consider them, since it described them as a "shameless proposal", and as an indication of an aggressive intent toward Poland and of an intent to dominate Europe.
Furthermore, the Polish Government falsified the nature of the German proposals, claiming that Germany required Polish acceptance of them as a precondition for negotiations. The German Government had done no such thing; it had put forward proposals to the British Government, which had offered to facilitate German-Polish talks, to serve as a basis for negotiation. The proposals represented Germany's desired outcome, but the Polish side could have put forward counter-proposals, if it had been prepared to negotiate seriously, which it quite clealry was not, since it categorically refused to enter into negotiations or to accept any German proposals.