The Secretary of War (Baker) to the Acting Secretary of State

My Dear Mr. Secretary: I have your letter of February 18th, enclosing a cablegram from Mr. John F. Stevens concerning the movement of Czecho-Slovak troops.

The number of our troops remaining in Siberia is something like 5,00043 and it is obvious that their assistance is not necessary to some 72,000 Czecho-Slovaks who are withdrawing toward Vladivostok. You may recall that Mr. Stevens, in one of his original cablegrams on this subject, stated in substance that if the small detachments of Americans scattered along the railroad had difficulty in getting out, they could be protected by the Czecho-Slovaks.

General Graves has reported the arrival in Vladivostok of a sufficient number of Czecho-Slovaks to fill the steamers about due there, and the question of the repatriation of these men would be extremely complicated if the entire 72,000 men arrived in Vladivostok, where there are no accommodations for them, at approximately the same [Page 504] time. Their arrival is about coincident with the arrival of our ships which are allocated to the duty of taking them to Trieste, and in my judgment our present plans are working satisfactorily.

Very sincerely yours,

Newton D. Baker
  1. General Graves and the last of the American troops left Vladivostok on Apr. 1. There is apparently no report of the actual departure in the Department’s files.