Memorandum by the Third Assistant Secretary of State (Long)

Memorandum of conversation with the Minister of Finland.

The Finnish Minister advised me that there will be held in Helsingfors a conference between the representatives of the governments of Finland, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Esthonia to consider “safeguarding their mutual interests”. He said that this contemplated probably some coordinate action amongst those governments against Bolshevism, as that was the only “mutual interest” which those governments had at this time. He said that the representatives of the Allied Powers in Finland had agreed to support the Finnish Government in case instructions from their governments permitted them to do so. He asked that the American representative be instructed to support the Finnish Government. Responding to my question he said that he did not ask that the American representative participate in the conference, but that he support the position which the Government of Finland would take in the conference.

I told him that it was contrary to our policy to give blanket instructions to our representatives abroad to cooperate with the representatives of other governments, but that I would consider what might be done, and that if we found it possible that we would send instructions, and that he might feel that the Government of the United States viewed sympathetically any action which the Government of Finland might take which would react to strengthening that Government, and which might also act as a barrier against the spread of Bolshevism.

Breckinridge Long