By the President of the United States of America
December 13 will mark one year since the Polish military authorities, under intense Soviet pressure, put an end to Poland's experiment in peaceful change. During this year, the military authorities, employing force, have intimidated and ultimately dissolved the free trade unions with which the Polish Government had signed solemn accords but a short time before. Thus, a genuine labor movement was suppressed by a government of generals who claim to represent the working class. Their victory, such as it is, can only be a seeming one. The brave people of Poland have learned during a century and a half of foreign occupation to maintain their national spirit and to resist succumbing to coercion. We are not deceived for an instant that the silence which has now descended on expressions of free opinion in Poland reflects in any way the actual state of mind of the Polish people. The censored press and media do not speak on their behalf. Solidarity may be technically outlawed but its ideals of free trade unionism and nonviolent change will never be destroyed.
This weekend offers Americans a special opportunity to honor the Polish people and to demonstrate our support for their struggle for the right to determine their destiny without interference by dictatorships, supported and incited from the outside.
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate December 12, 1982, as A Day of Prayer for Poland and Solidarity With the Polish People.
I invite the people of the United States to observe this day by offering prayers for the people of Poland and by participating in appropriate ceremonies and activities to demonstrate our continuing support for their aspirations for greater freedom.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 10th day of December, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.