861.01/162: Telegram

The Commission to Negotiate Peace to the Secretary of State

4825. Following translation of note transmitted on the 18th instant to the French Government by the Russian Embassy at Paris is communicated for the Department’s information.

“Besides reasons of a political nature favoring the immediate recognition of the government of Admiral Kolchak as the national government of Russia, this recognition for financial and economic reasons can no longer be delayed without gravely injuring the vital interests of Russia.

The economic recovery of Russia and the consolidation of public order in the interior of the country necessitates from now on the importation on a large scale of instruments of production, manufactured [Page 445] goods, and war material. Especially concerning the war material, credits which were opened in this respect to Russia by the Allied and Associated Powers, are much inferior to the real needs of the national armies. Russia is therefore obliged to undertake direct purchases on foreign markets. The exportation of raw materials, in virtue of which Russia soon [ordinarily] paid for her purchases abroad being necessarily limited at the present time owing to the lack of means of transport and to the complete domestic [economic] disorganization, the Provisional Government is obliged to have recourse to gold exportation as a means of payment.

It is needless to add that the Provisional Government cannot continue this without causing an irreparable prejudice to the economic and financial future of Russia. The gradual exhaustion of gold reserves would make the improvement of the monetary system of Russia impossible and at the same time jeopardize the means of reimbursement of its foreign debt, the liquidation of which the Provisional Government has deemed as its first duty to assume.

Under these circumstances the only way to provide for the most urgent needs of Russia without jeopardizing its economic and financial future consists in opening credits abroad for the payment of purchases. Now it is impossible for Russia to procure credits abroad to an extent corresponding with these needs as long as she does not possess an officially recognized government. Consequently considering the declaration of May 27th [26th] of this year by which the Allied and Associated Governments promised their assistance to Admiral Kolchak91 it would be especially urgent that the Allied and Associated Powers no longer delay the recognition of the Russian Provisional Government”.

American Mission
  1. Ante, p. 367.