861.4061 Motion Pictures/78: Telegram

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

173. The Department does not feel that it can undertake to pass on the desirability of the Soviet Government awarding decorations to the producers of the films mentioned in your 224, January 22. The selection of private persons for Soviet decorations is a matter for the decision of the Soviet Government alone.

In conveying the foregoing to Dekanosov you might if you consider it desirable and possible mention to him in a personal and informal manner the fact that at the time of its release the film “Mission [Page 809] To Moscow” aroused undesirable and heated controversy in the press and elsewhere in the United States concerning the Soviet Union and Soviet-American relations. This controversy has now subsided, but it is of course possible that the award of the Soviet decoration to the producer of this film might serve to revive it. An award to the producer of the “Battle For Russia” which you very properly brought to the attention of Dekanosov would certainly be better received in the United States. The Department leaves entirely to your discretion whether the above considerations should be mentioned or not to Dekanosov.