760D.6111/3–648: Telegram

The Minister in Finland (Warren) to the Secretary of State


94. Night fifth Foreign Minister sent his brother to French Minister to tell him Thursday p. m. Press Attaché Soviet Legation called on Foreign Minister’s secretary to inquire how things going Soviet proposal. When told they going well, Attaché replied Finnish Government knows they not going well at all. In fact Finnish Government must know that Soviet Government aware attempts on part Paasikivi and members government to establish contact with Anglo-Saxons for purposes unfriendly to Soviets. When asked to clarify, Soviet Attaché said Soviet Government knew that Finnish Minister Stockholm in close contact with American Ambassador there and Finnish Minister London seeking contacts higher circles British Government. After receiving memorandum his secretary’s conversation, Foreign Minister summoned Soviet Minister to office March 5, 4 p. m. Foreign Minister asked if Soviet Minister knew substance of his attaché’s statement to secretary previous day. Soviet Minister said of course he knew and in rough und unpleasant manner said Soviet Government aware Paasikivi and members Cabinet seeking contacts for orientation with Anglo-Saxons for purpose unfriendly to Soviets and Finns should not expect Soviets permit it. Enckell irritated and denied statement categorically saying neither he nor President nor any member Cabinet have taken any action prejudicial friendly relations with Soviets. Thereupon Soviet Minister asked if Foreign Minister thought he knew everything going on in Finland. Enckell then repeated statement. Soviet Minister closed interview, walking out office with remark “we [Page 771] shall see.” French Minister’s impression is Foreign Minister who went immediately President with above report is very frightened.

Last night BBC 6 p. m. BMGT heard Finland at 8 quoted Izvestia saying progress Finnish debate on Stalin proposal indicates Finns not aware (1) future independence Finland is identified with Soviets; (2) there should be no doubt about military nature of pact. No Finnish reaction this statement yet come my attention. French Minister says Foreign Minister does not know whether interpret conversation with Soviet Minister as no more than expression Soviet irritation Finnish delay decision or whether it threat saber rattling or whether it warning Soviets will follow same pattern Finland as in Czechoslovakia, that is extralegal internal action on grounds reactionary intrigue Anglo-Saxon powers.