File No. 861.00/3332

The Ambassador in Russia (Francis), en route to the United States, to the Secretary of State1


3. Your 352, November 15 [13], 5 p.m.,2 to American Embassy, Archangel. Am unable to refer to Archangel files which show whatever I sent by courier to American Consulate, Ekaterinburg. This courier was dispatched by Consulate, Ekaterinburg, with instructions to return thereto. I do not recall definitely what communicated, if anything, by courier, but possibly spirit thereof was [in] tended to encourage Poles who were hesitating between supporting Czechs and Bolsheviks allied with German war prisoners.3 Am certainly confident that sent nothing conflicting with our policy which studied carefully and, conscientiously followed; furthermore, it had my thorough personal approval as far as it went. I do not forget that later I recommended that we, in conjunction with Allies, exterminate Bolsheviks in interest of humanity, as their reign of terror was not only injuring Russia irreparably but strengthening Germany with all right-thinking Russians and was a reflection on Allies and professed friends Russia. I do not recall dates except that our Russian-Siberian policy promulgated August 3 did not officially reach me until August 22, when I cabled Department policy seemed admirably adapted to situation. I had previously cabled Department requesting [Page 451] commander American troops be instructed to keep in close touch with me lest British commander would order movements contrary to our policy. That policy was to effect that American and Allied troops should protect rear of Czechs and that American troops in northern Russia were sent under British command to protect supplies from Germans and their Bolshevik allies while abstaining from interference in internal affairs. I did not put narrow construction on such policy especially as large stocks of supplies were assembled at Kotlas and Sukhona, consequently I did not interfere with orders issued by British commander to American troops to proceed down railroad and up Dvina. Such interference would not only have produced friction with British and French but would have encouraged Bolsheviks advance on Archangel under German officers. Department was kept advised concerning movement American troops and policy pursued by me.

Why is this question asked now?

Gaining strength continuously.

  1. Sent via the Embassy in Great Britain (No. 4247).
  2. Ante, p. 432.
  3. See footnote 2 ante, p. 419.