File No. 861.00/469

The Secretary Attached to the Russian Embassy ( Sookine ) to the Counselor for the Department of State ( Polk )

My Dear Mr. Polk : I have the honor to send you herewith for the information of the Department of State a copy of a telegram which has been received from Petrograd concerning the internal situation in Russia.

Believe me [etc.]


The Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs ( Tereshchenko ) to the Ambassador at Washington

The prolonged Cabinet crisis has ended by the formation of the new Cabinet, the names of the members of which have been published. The leading features of this Cabinet are the entrance of representatives of the Constitutional Democrats, the strengthening of the moderate and patriotic Social Revolutionists, such as Savinkov and Avksentiev, and the retirement of Tseretelli as the result of which shall be the independence of the Government from the Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Deputies. Tseretelli insisted upon this change because by remaining outside of the Cabinet he will doubtless be able to defend the Government’s measures before the democratic bodies more energetically.

The debates in the Council of Workmen’s and Soldiers’ Deputies and the resolutions adopted indicate the council’s intention to support the authority.

A number of features of the resolution indicate that the council has at present taken a defensive position and is afraid of possible attacks on the organs of the revolutionary democracy. The future course of the Government can be determined by separate statements of Kerensky and by the composition of the Cabinet. The main question is the reestablishment of the army’s fighting power. Very essential in this respect is the entrance into the Government of Savinkov as acting chief of the Ministry of War, owing to his definite stand for most decisive steps for the salvation of the front.

The order of the Government work has been changed.

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The formation of a Committee of National Defense is planned, in which the Ministers Nekrasov, Avksentiev and myself as well as Savinkov shall enter, and which body is to decide all questions relating to war.

At the same time general meetings of the Government shall be held less frequently than formerly. Owing to explanations given by General Kornilov concerning his conditions under which he would assume the general command of the armies, a full understanding has been reached between him and the Government, and he has already taken up his functions.