711.61/2–1547: Telegram

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


414. Following letter to me dated February 14 has been received from Molotov. Translation follows:

“On 10 of February this year while question of appointing Mr. Lilienthal1 as chairman of Commission on Atomic Energy was beings considered in the Senate of USA, Senator McKellar allowed himself, in addressing Under Secretary of State, Mr. Acheson, to inquire: ‘Do you not suppose that Russia would take over rest of Europe and world, if she were in possession of bomb?’ In answer to this rude attack of Senator McKellar on Soviet Union, Under Secretary of State Mr. Acheson observed: ‘Foreign policy of Russia is aggressive and” expansionist’.

“Account of this session of Senate, including statement introduced by Mr. Acheson was published on 11th February by number of American newspapers (Washington Post, New York Herald Tribme, etc.), also by UP.

Soviet Government calls the attention of Government of USA to inadmissible behavior of Mr. Acheson, who allowed himself, despite his official position, to make statement in Senate which was rudely slanderous and hostile to Soviet Union.

At direction of Soviet Government I request you to inform Government of USA of above facts.”2

  1. David E. Lilienthal, lawyer, chairman of the Tennessee Valley Authority since 1941.
  2. Mr. Acheson’s office was notified of this protest at 2:15 p. m., on February 15.