POLAND: Gierek: Building from Scratch

Poland's Communist Party Chief Edward Gierek arrives in Washington this week for an eight-day state visit, bringing with him a reputation as one of the East bloc's shrewdest leaders. Since 1970, when dock workers' strikes over high food prices brought him to the head of the ruling Polish United Workers' Party, Gierek has overseen booming economic development and the evolution of the Warsaw Pact countries' most politically permissive society. Relying heavily on foreign credits (and risking what he hopes will be temporary trade deficits), Gierek has purchased huge amounts of Western technology and capital equipment in an effort to create...

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