WARSAW, Poland -- President Wojciech Jaruzelski has fired several hard-line generals who opposed reforms that led to the nomination of Prime Minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki, a Communist Party source said.
Jaruzelski, who also is commander-in-chief of the armed forces, late Monday named new, younger officers to head Poland's three military districts -- Pomerania, Silesia and Warsaw.
He also made five other promotions, including Gen. Jerzy Gotowala as commander of the air force, in what the official news agency PAP called 'a rejuvenation of key posts in the armed forces.'
'With regard to one-time changes, this is a lot,' a spokesman for the Defense Ministry said Tuesday.
Western diplomats said that despite the changes they are surprised Jaruzelski still has not ousted his top remaining hard-liner, Defense Minister Florian Siwicki.
The party source said for the first time since Poland joined the Warsaw Pact, all three generals now in charge of military districts received their basic military education in Poland instead of Moscow, although all but one also had some limited advance training in the Soviet Union.
'Jaruzelski was facing apathy and almost a revolt in the army because the old guys were not keeping up with the political changes,' one Communist Party source said. 'The younger army officers are for the changes and they sparked pro-Jaruzelski enthusiasm.'
A key promotion was that of Brig. Gen. Franciczek Puchala as deputy chief of the army general staff. Considered a reformer, Puchala has been involved in the restructuring of the Polish military forces.
On the eve of his confirmation by the Polish Parliament Aug. 23, Mazowiecki said he had talked with Jaruzelski and received the general's assurance of support from the army and police, which are the traditional power base of the Communists.
Solidarity parliamentarians at the time openly expressed concern about a possible coup before the Solidarity premier took office.
Under the shake-up, Gen. Zbigniew Zalewski was appointed commander of the Pomerania district in the northern part of Poland, replacing Gen. Zbigniew Blechman, a veteran hard-liner whose new job has not yet been disclosed.
Brig. Gen. Tadeusz Wilecki was promoted from chief-of-staff to commander of the Silesian district -- the most industrialized southwestern part of the country. He replaces Maj. Gen. Henryk Szumski, who was promoted to first deputy chief of the Polish general staff.
Born in 1945, Wilecki is the youngest of the new wave of generals, five of whom are under 50.
In the Warsaw district, Gen. Zdzislaw Stelmaszuk, 53, replaced Maj. Gen. Jan Kuriata, who became the head quartermaster.
Gotowala, 48, who was not trained in Moscow, took over as commander of the air force from Gen. Tytus Krwawczyc, 59, whose new position was not given.
Mazowiecki continued talks Tuesday with candidates for Cabinet posts amid indications that the naming of his government will be postponed until Sept. 12 or 13.
He met with Sen. Ryszard Reiff, a member of the small pro-communist Pax Catholic organization who was ousted after martial law. Afterward Reiff said only that they spoke for an hour.
The speaker of the House, Mikolai Kozakiewicz, said parliamentary hearings will beheld for three days beginning Friday on the candidates.
Mazowiecki is expected to meet with Solidarity parliamentary leaders Thursday to present his final list.