Karski: a strange dispatch from Mikołajczyk

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Karski: a strange dispatch from Mikołajczyk

Post by Karski » 17 Jul 2022 15:42

As you may have guessed from my other posts, I'm not an academic and therefore don't have easy access to the archives. That's why I prefer to address myself first to this forum.

Wood and Jankovski (Karski..., 2014, p. 124) (who believe that the Polish agent whom Karski met in Paris in 1942 was Kawałkowski, which seems incorrect; see viewtopic.php?t=223309 ) say:
He (= Kawałkowski) appears to have relayed a complaint to Warsaw via Interior Minister Stanisław Mikołajczyk in London, who sent an irritated dispatch to the Government Delegate: "Why didn't you provide him with any personal authentication [false papers, as explained by Wood and Jankowski], mail or money? It makes further expedition difficult." Jan may have lacked the necessary forged documents to move freely in Paris, but he certainly was carrying plenty of cash - the Delegate had appropriated the extravagant sum of thirty-seven złotys (roughly eight thousand dollars in current value) for his journey, mostly in the form of gold coins. The complaint that he was not carrying "mail" (smuggled documents destined for the London government) must have arisen from confusion. Jan had handed his key to Kawałkowski during their meeting at the boutique. Kawałkowski would make use of his consular connections to send the key out of France in the diplomatic pouch of a neutral country. The key, bearing microfilmed "mail" that would shock the world, was to arrive in London about ten days before Jan.
For Mikołajczyk's dispatch, Wood ans Jankowski (p. 272, explained p. 255) give the following reference: Mikołajczyk telegram to Delegate, October 6, 1942. Teka 10/ szafa 12, Studium Polski Podziemnej (Polish Underground Study Trust), London.

For the large sum held by Karski, they give as a reference (p. 272, explained p. 261): Karsky, Jan. "Notatka dla rządu polskiego: Dotycząca misji Jana Karskiego w Londynie" ("Note for the Polish Government: Concerning the Mission of Jan Karski to London"), November 30, 1942, Box 2, HIA/Karski. (HIA = Papers of Polish government-in-exile, Hoover Institution Archives, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California. See p. 255.)

I don't find this passage from Wood and Jankowski very clear. They seem to think that the "confusion" was caused by "Kawałkowski" ("He appears to have relayed a complaint to Warsaw via Interior Minister Stanisław Mikołajczyk in London"). But if, as they say, "Kawałkowski" had received from Karski a key intended to be sent to the government in exile in London, Karski had surely told him that this key contained microfilms. How is it then that Mikołajczyk said in his dispatch to the Delegate that the courier had not received "mail"?

In any event, I take leave to ask if any of you have the exact and complete text of Mikołajczyk's dispatch and could post it on this forum. If it were only possible to know how the courier is named in Mikołajczyk's dispatch, that would already be good. (I happen to wonder if historians sometimes confuse Karski with another courier.)

Thanks in advance.

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