124.613/980: Telegram

The Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Steinhardt) to the Secretary of State

497. The Foreign Office has just informed the Embassy by telephone that in view of my personal request and as an exception not to be taken as a precedent, a customs inspector is being sent immediately to Dr. Nelson’s apartment for the purpose of examining his effects. I accordingly suggest that the Canal authorities be requested to authorize the Kim to proceed at once. I also suggest that the usual customs facilities be accorded the Red Army ensemble upon its arrival.56

I believe the successful outcome of the Nelson matter demonstrates that it is possible in specific cases to obtain a modification of Soviet intransigeance in respect of the usual courtesies if a sufficiently firm attitude is displayed, and I desire to express my appreciation to the Department for its wholehearted cooperation in this matter.

  1. By a letter of September 7, 1939, from the Secretary of State to the Secretary of the Treasury, the request was made that all possible courtesy and consideration for this troupe be accorded by the customs authorities at New York (811.607 New York 1939/2014).