767.68119/10–2445: Telegram

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

3644. Dept’s 2188, Oct. 19.74 Treaty of December 17, 1925 between USSR and Turkey was designed to meet situation which long ago ceased to exist. It was concluded at a time when both States were weak and ostracized. It was a defensive alliance of very young black sheep.

With USSR now a mighty expansionist power and Turkey feeling itself menaced by USSR, this treaty no longer has validity. That letter of treaty has thus far been observed is due to international military and political considerations, not to Soviet concern for sanctity of treaties. Its expiration, therefore, has formalistic rather than intrinsic meaning. After Nov 7, Soviet policy toward Turkey will continue to be result of Moscow’s estimate of need for expansion into Turkey as calculated against probable resistance such expansion would encounter from Turkey and degree of support from Britain and USA. Intmediate effect of expiration will be, of course, intensification of Soviet war of nerves.

To Dept 3644, rptd Ankara 67.

  1. Same as telegram 1017 to Ankara, p. 1254.