File No. 861.00/1270a

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain ( Page)1


Japanese Chargé read to the Department on March 7 an inquiry from his Government to the following effect:

Provided it is correctly reported that the Bolshevik government of Russia signed the peace treaty at Brest Litovsk shall the Allied powers regard Russia as a neutral or as an enemy or shall they take the stand that, inasmuch as the treaty was the invalid act of a self-instituted government not recognized by any of the Allies, relations between the Allies and Russia remain unaltered?

Department to-day read to the Japanese Chargé d’Affaires an answer to that inquiry as follows:

In the view of the Government of the United States recent events have in no way altered the relations and obligations of this Government towards Russia. It does not feel justified in regarding Russia either as a neutral or as an enemy, but continues to regard it as an ally. There is, in fact, no Russian government to deal with. The so-called Soviet government upon which Germany has just forced, or tried to force, peace was never recognized by the Government of the United States as even a government de facto. None of its acts, therefore, need be officially recognized by this Government; and the Government of the United States feels that it is of the utmost importance, as affecting the whole public opinion of the world and giving proof of the utter good faith of all the governments associated against Germany, that we should continue to treat the Russians as in all respects our friends and allies against the common enemy.

  1. The same, on the same date, to the diplomatic representatives in France, Italy, Russia, Japan, and China, and to the Consul General at Moscow.