761.00/3–648: Telegram

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


425. At risk of whipping what should be dead horse, believe it essential explode myth two schools of thought in Politburo, conciliatory one headed by Stalin1 and tough one by Molotov as reported Budapest’s 330, March 3 to Department.2

[Page 819]

This one of oldest gags on Soviet confusion–propaganda circuit. This Soviet version Bergen–McCarthy act3 has been used for years as come-on game to confuse gullible statesmen being taken into camp. Tough “McCarthy” Molotov makes exaggerated demands which kind, pipe-smoking “Bergen” Stalin whittles down into so-called concessions which temporarily relieve anxiety of foreign statesman until he wakes up to reality of tough bargain he has been forced to accept.

Alleged dissension in backfield of Soviet football team causes opponents to relax vigilance and come to their senses only after Stalin has called for the old Statue of Liberty play which Molotov executes for a touchdown.

Even cursory study Soviet history will show that despite Stalin’s soft spoken words to interviewers about the desire for cooperation, the “tough policy” always comes to the fore in the end despite any tactical zig-zags on way to goal. Does anyone think this is over Stalin’s opposition?

Department please pass Budapest 13.

  1. Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin, Marshal and Generalissimo, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union.
  2. Not printed.
  3. A well known ventriloquist act on radio by Mr. Edgar Bergen, and his wooden dummy named Charlie McCarthy.