740.00119 European War/2229: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé in Finland ( Gullion )

52. Minister Johnson, in his telegram to the Department 768, March 6,54 referring to your telegram to him 28, March 4,55 reports that the Swedish Government considers the proposed Finnish reply to the Soviet terms to be so unrealistic that the Swedes refused to transmit it. According to the Swedish Foreign Office the Finnish document expressed the Finns’ desire for peace but continued by saying that the Soviet conditions were not acceptable “as such” and therefore the Finnish Government proposed that negotiations take place to enable the Finns to have an opportunity to make clear their views. The Swedish Government feels that transmission of the Finnish reply might well end in completely closing the door and therefore are strongly urging the Finns to accept the Russian terms. With the authorization of the King56 the Swedish Foreign Minister has delivered to Gripenberg57 a Royal message to the Finnish Government expressing the King’s personal views along these lines.

For the past week the Swedish Foreign Minister has been pressing with the Finns his view that under no circumstances can they possibly hope for any better terms than the Soviet conditions and that refusal would simply mean that the ultimate terms of capitulation will be harder.

The Department finds it difficult to disagree with the point of view and conclusions of the Swedish Government as reported by Mr. Johnson. Accordingly, should an early opportunity present itself in conversation with Dr. Ramsay or any other responsible Finnish officials you may say that you have knowledge of the Swedish Government’s expression to the Finnish Government of the Swedish views and invite attention to the close similarity between those views and the observations contained in the aide-mémoire which you handed Dr. Ramsay on January 31.

Sent to Helsinki, repeated to Moscow as Department’s No. 509 and to London as Department’s No. 1724: For the secret information of the Ambassador only.

  1. Not printed.
  2. This telegram was sent to the Department as 193, March 4, 1944, not printed.
  3. King Gustav V.
  4. Georg A. Gripenberg, Finnish Minister to Sweden.