File No. 763.72119/553
The Minister in Sweden ( Morris) to the Secretary of State
[Received 9.20 p.m.]
301. Following information given me by the British Minister at Stockholm who is in close touch with Russian situation:
In view of the discussions that are current in Russia among labor and socialistic parties, the British and French Governments have each appointed a committee to go to Petrograd for conference with Workingmen’s and Soldiers’ Committee [Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Deputies], of which Deputy Cheidze is chairman. The Workingmen’s and Soldiers’ Committee represents the labor party and extreme element of socialistic party. In their deliberations on the political situation they have discussed the question of peace. This [Page 22]committee has been holding daily meetings in Petrograd. The object of the British and French committees is to point out and endeavor to convince their Russian confreres that peace on any other basis than that constantly had in mind by the Allies would be against the best interests of the Russian people as well as the Allies themselves. The Provisional Russian Government is particularly strong in Moscow. The Workingmen’s and Soldiers’ Committee is influential in Petrograd but less so throughout remaining Russia. The Provisional Government has been careful not to commit acts which they have felt would be strongly opposed by and objectionable to the Working-men’s and Soldiers’ Committee.
The British committee consists of two members of Parliament and a leader of trade-unions in England named Will Thorne. The French committee consists of three deputies representing labor parties. These committees passed through Stockholm April 11. In connection with this matter see my 300, quoting press reports from Russia received through official Swedish press bureau.