The Ambassador in the Soviet Union (Steinhardt) to the Secretary of State
[Received February 9—1:11 p.m.]
161. My telegram No. 159, February 9, 1 p.m.59 In the course of my conversation with Ritter60 he confirmed the fact reported in my [Page 289] telegram under reference that the German Government had recently offered to mediate between the Finnish and Soviet Governments but had failed to elicit a favorable response from the Soviet Government. He expressed the opinion that the Soviet Government now regarded the Finnish war primarily in the light of its military prestige and consequently was determined for this reason to achieve at least some measures of military success before even giving consideration to the possibilities of a settlement by negotiation.