762.9411/61: Telegram

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

1249. The first direct comment which has been published in the Soviet press concerning the German-Italian-Japanese pact is contained [Page 654] in a leading editorial on the subject in Pravda today. After stating that there is no need to discuss the contents of the pact since the text has been made public, the editorial asserts that this pact was no surprise to the Soviet Union since in the first place in essence it merely formulates relations which had already existed between Germany, Italy, and Japan on the one hand and England and the United States on the other and, secondly, “the Soviet Government was informed by the German Government of the forthcoming conclusion of the tripartite pact prior to its publication”. [Here follows summary of the editorial.]

Repeated to Tokyo.