File No. 862.20261/74

The Ambassador in Russia ( Francis) to the Secretary of State


38. Answering your 19. My No. 23543 presented documents in such consecutive way as to convince me that Soviet leaders had accepted German money to demoralize Russian Army. … Robins says absurd that Soviet working with Germans, but Sisson and Bullard convinced, are positive. Probably Sisson and Robins both influenced by pride of opinion and mutual animosity.

I follow developments closely communicating with Summers and Robins daily, who also differ greatly. Riggs, now Moscow, reports Allies responding to appeal to assist army organization generously, having assigned thirty-eight therefor and Italians ordered ten from Italy. Have authorized military attaché to do likewise because it is unadvisable to refuse, but mainly for reason that Trotsky, Minister of War, announces that army will be under strict discipline and is engaging Russian officers who must reenlist and [since] sole occupation gone. While such army nominally for defense, real object is resistance to all existing governments and promotion of socialism throughout the whole world. It is only hope for saving European Russia from Germany. My (real) and strictly confidential reason [Page 488] is that army so organized can by proper methods be taken from Bolshevik control and used against Germans, and even its creators if prove that German allies. I anticipate not revealing last reason to Robins or Riggs.

Whereabouts of Rumanian Military Mission unknown; think contains only two officers who with Riggs may assist in organizing.

Consider it advisable you understand my objects and why can not now form decided opinion concerning objects of Soviet leaders whose acts heretofore could not have been more promotive of German interests whether so intended or not.

  1. Ante, p. 371.