File No. 861.00/2840

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


431. The President’s message received. Your telegram 274, September 26, deciphered and clear. Thanks for personal commendation but I am not resting on past efforts. I may be flattering myself but I think I have been greatly instrumental in bringing about present cooperation between sovereign government, Poole, and the Allied Ambassadors which I believe is more in accord with [Page 550] our policy, thanks to assistance by you, see your telegram No. 267; have not mentioned to Lindley nor he to me but observe changed attitude of Poole. Difficulties not absolutely removed but making a persistent effort to that end.

Y.M.C.A. doing excellent work, also the American Red Cross; vessel just arrived with 2,000 tons supplies. American soldiers here besides helping physically have a widespread moral effect, their joyousness, buoyancy contagious, inspiring, cannot fail to impress Russians consequently regret no more coming.

Desiring encourage formation Russian army is my reason for organizing Slav-American Legion. Friction between Russian officers and soldiers will disappear when Russian and American officers associated in instructing battalion; furthermore, our own well-disciplined troops beneficial example.

I am not planning to enlist battalion in our army. I think Russian army essential to establishment of government and the regeneration of Russia and association of our soldiers will convince Russians that an army is not inimical to liberty as our government has been model since the revolution for all democratic Russians except Bolsheviks.

See my 428, 27th, concerning Siberian government. If the Siberian Railway opened, northern Russia will be supplied from Siberia and consequently not depending on foreign aid. If I am rightly informed concerning Omsk government the capture of Vologda, Vyatka, and Perm will make such supplies accessible and will render many Russian surplus products available for export.

British Secret Service states famous German baron, bomb expert, en route from Finland to Archangel to explode supplies; and Prince, from information gained Moscow, believes report true. Munitions evacuated from Petrograd, Archangel stored Vologda, Kotlas toward which Allied forces advancing.

The government will have mobilization Archangel next week of five classes, ’93 to ’98, but probably be only 15,000 available in this province; Vologda and Vyatka Provinces under this government jurisdiction have respectively 60,000 and 120,000 available men.