123 Gleysteen, Culver: Telegram

The Consul at Dairen (Paddock) to the Secretary of State

117. No answer as yet from Chief Soviet Kom[manda]tura regarding Gleysteen arrest (Contel 109, April 16, repeated Moscow 60, and immediately preceding telegram April 15, repeated all addressees).

At interview April 16 he said Gleysteen did not have identification. This true. I replied I had asked Soviet Consul last summer for identification but nothing done. Since November we had carried Soviet Komtura curfew pass (for use after 11 p. m.) but this had expired April 1; although Consul had written March 23 for renewal, no answer. (New passes issued us day after arrest and apparently only because of arrest.) Actually Gleysteen arrest first time any identification ever asked for.

Only identification Chief Soviet Komtura could suggest for us was driving license. I said Consul had written local police chief last summer but no answer; also tried several times since then see police but no success; result we still do not have licenses. He said I should try again. Accordingly this week Consul wrote police for driving tests; we may or may not get reply.

Excuse of Chief Soviet Komtura that Gleysteen had no identification thus believed irrelevant. Soviet Colonel of paragraph 6, April 15 telegram20 knew Gleysteen and subject of identification never raised by him; yet Gleysteen held and questioned in Komtura for 2 hours after meeting him.

Chief Soviet Komtura said Gleysteen never under arrest. I objected, pointing out conditions under which Gleysteen held tantamount arrest. Chief made no further comment.

Nearest chief came to giving a reason for Gleysteen arrest was statement that seashores patrolled after dark. I said Dairen not part of PA21 naval base area and shores of Dairen city never termed restricted area.

Protest to Soviet Foreign Office plus publicity regarding this incident, in which Soviets wholly in wrong, may result in more respect to Consul in day-to-day affairs. Thus Consul concurs Embassy suggestion Nanking telegram 803, April 20, Moscow 26.

In its consideration this problem Department should note that apparently last time Dairen discussed with Soviet Foreign Office (except visas and special ship last March–April to bring personnel here) was refusal let newspapermen ashore from courier ship January 1947 [Page 869] [December 194622]. It perhaps of future value to use Gleysteen case as excuse reaffirm Department’s position regarding Dairen, particularly as local administration now in process of change.

Note: During first 2 hours of Gleysteen arrest he remained in Consulate jeep under armed guard (two Soviet soldiers with tommyguns, one Soviet officer and one Chinese police officer). Gleysteen ordered drive to Soviet guardhouse, Chinese police station at Rokotan and Soviet camp in west part Dairen before being taken Soviet Komtura.

Repeated Nanking 83, Moscow 65, OffEmb Canton 27, Shanghai 113.

  1. Telegram No. 108, p. 865.
  2. Port Arthur.
  3. See telegram No. 2538, December 23, 1946, noon, from the Consul General at Shanghai, and subsequent documents, Foreign Relations, 1946, vol. x, pp. 1194 ff.