740.00114A P.W./4–1243: Telegram

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

288. My 118, February 16 [6], 8 p.m., from Kuibyshev. I took occasion on Saturday71 to press Molotov72 for a reply to my aide-mémoire. He stated the question was being studied by the Commissariat for Foreign Trade and he had no information he could convey to me at this time. He asked whether it would be feasible to send such supplies to Murmansk and Archangel for onward rail shipment to the Far East and I replied I would consult my Government on this point.

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I understand convoys have been stopped to the northern ports.73 Consequently I do not see how we can reply in the affirmative to this query and I suggest we state that in view of the more advantageous shipping conditions in the Pacific at present it would be preferable to make such shipments by that route, at least until such a time as the North Atlantic and Arctic shipping situation is more propitious.

  1. April 10.
  2. Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov, People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union.
  3. For correspondence concerning the difficulties of maintaining convoys on the northern route to ports in the Soviet Union, see pp. 624703, passim.