800.0146/155½: Telegram

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

1364. Your 799, September 4, 10 p.m. I have received a note from Molotov dated September 14, the essential paragraphs of which read in paraphrased translation as follows:

“The Soviet Government recognizes that the main responsibility for the administration of enemy territories should rest on the command of the armed forces conquering those territories up to the time when the local civilian authorities begin to function. At the same time in organizing the administration of regions conquered from the enemy the Soviet Government considers it to be the task of the military command to draw into the administration on a wide scale local personnel who are sympathetic to the Allies and who can render assistance in the establishment of the local organs of authorities organized on democratic principles.

The considerations concerning the drawing in of local personnel are applicable to a still greater degree to liberated regions formerly occupied by the enemy. However, the Soviet Government considers it necessary to point out that it learned for the first time from the Embassy’s note of September 626 of the conversations on this subject which were carried on by the American and British Governments with the refugee governments. The Soviet Government has not been advised of the contents or character of these conversations. However, it is evident from the Embassy’s note in question that a certain uneasiness exists among refugee governments’ authorities and their respective countries over the question of the possible establishment of military governments in those countries. From the circumstances set forth above and taking into consideration that the point of view of the interested governments in this question is not known to the Soviet Government it is quite understandable that the Soviet Government not having at its disposal the necessary information can not express an opinion on the proposed statement of the American and British Governments and cannot subscribe to the statement.

The Soviet Government attributes serious importance to this question.27 It therefore believes that it would serve a useful purpose to submit the question for preliminary consideration to the political [Page 525] military commission of the Soviet, American and British Governments together with the participation of a representative of the French Committee.”

  1. Presumably note based on telegram No. 799, September 4, 10 p.m., p. 517. See especially final paragraph of that telegram.
  2. On September 28, 1943, Sir Ronald Campbell, British Minister in the United States, informed the Adviser on Political Relations, James Clement Dunn, that his Government felt that the time and the appropriateness for the issuance of a joint statement on liberated areas by the British and American Governments had passed in view of the fact that the Soviet Government had now displayed a strong interest in the matter, and his Government desired that the joint statement as agreed upon at Quebec on this subject be definitely cancelled. Mr. Dunn stated in reply that the United States Government was entirely in agreement to the cancellation of the joint statement. (800.0146/228)