711.61/2–2147: Telegram

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


487. Personal for Matthews. I am forwarding by pouch compilation of subjects of anti-American articles in Soviet press during period September 1, 1946–February 14, 1947.1 This report gives only faint idea of rising crescendo of anti-American press campaign of invective, distorted misrepresentations and twisted facts which now surpass in intensity anything we have so far experienced, and I thought we had developed rather thick skins. Tone of Soviet press toward US trends [Page 535] from hysteria to savagery and sounds all notes between except reason or objective approach to any subject which is completely lacking. If it is true, as we have often thought, that Kremlin was most dangerous when most quiet, present attitude could be explained by able [apparent garble] consciousness of weakened position due to economic difficulties in Soviet Union and satellite countries, present failure to obtain political objectives in Iran, Middle East, and Germany, resistance encountered in UN and increasing realization of firmness of US foreign policy. In addition to above it is undoubtedly preliminary psychological preparation for Moscow Conference,2 calculated to create atmosphere of pessimism and make western delegations thankful for small favors in the form of minor Soviet compromises.

  1. Despatch 889 from Moscow on February 24, not printed.
  2. For documentation on the Fourth Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers held in Moscow between March 10 and April 24, see volume ii .