740.0011 European War 1939/10979: Telegram

The Chargé in Germany ( Morris ) to the Secretary of State

1866. The stories, possibly or even probably deliberately circulated, that Germany is preparing to invade Russia are now followed by rumors that negotiations are in progress for thoroughgoing collaboration between the Soviet Government and the Reich, not merely in the economic field but extending also to military facilities. Extreme versions of this latter rumor affirm joint movements of German-Russian troops in the Middle East and eventually against India.

Those who repeat these stories do not pretend that they come from the highest sources. The rumor of all-out collaboration may possibly have some connection with the important trade negotiations with Soviet Russia that have recently been in progress. In regard to the latter, the Embassy is authoritatively informed that the Russians have agreed to greatly increased deliveries of various products. While the informant declined to specify the commodities or their amounts he remarked that the German negotiators were receiving promises of amounts far in excess of what they would have thought of even to ask for a year ago. He said that in the case of one commodity the Russians voluntarily offered to exceed the expanded quota requested by the Reich.

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He went on to say that while he was informed only of the trade talks and had no information as to possible corollary political military negotiations he did know that the dispositions [and?] arrangements of the troops along the Russian border had been completely worked out so that if such a decision were taken an invasion of Russia could be set in motion almost immediately.

Repeated to Moscow by pouch.

Morris