661.00/2–1751: Circular airgram

The Secretary of State to Certain Diplomatic and Consular Offices 2


[Here follows discussion of two subjects, part of “the weekly collection of items considered as possibly foreshadowing Soviet tactical trends” which was prepared in the Department of State by the Division of (Intelligence) Research for the USSR and Eastern Europe (DRS).]

Moscow’s Attempts to Discredit UN. An Izvestiya editorial broadcast on February 11 denounced the UN as a “servile” instrument of the “warmongers” and praised the World Peace Council as the people’s choice to “mobilize … for the defense of the cause of peace.”3 After praising a World Peace Council attack on the UN for branding Communist China as an aggressor, the editorial asserted that “The statement of the World Peace Council on the most fundamental problems of the international situation confirms its determination to [Page 456] fulfill the role that has been entrusted to it by the people. The ordinary people of the whole world are insistent upon this, as it is clear to everyone that the United Nations is unable to resist the instigators of a new war.” The Izvestiya statement reflected the general militancy of the current Soviet propaganda line. The creation of the World Peace Council was in itself a militant action since it was clearly designed to intimidate the UN, discredit decisions opposed by the USSR, and ultimately serve as an alternative agency if and when Moscow felt withdrawal from the UN to be expedient. At the very least, therefore, the current intensification of efforts to discredit the UN represents extreme intimidation designed perhaps to force favorable action by UN members particularly on Soviet disarmament proposals scheduled to be pressed by the World Peace Council.

[Here follows discussion of other subjects.]

  1. Sent to 54 diplomatic missions, 8 special missions, and 13 consulates and consulates general.
  2. From 1949, Soviet propaganda mounted a steadily expanding “peace” campaign representing the Soviet Union as the champion of peace and accusing the Western nations led by the United States of plotting another war. The principal vehicle of this Soviet campaign was the so-called “World Peace Council”, established by the Warsaw “Peace Conference” in October 1950, but which had its origins in the “Partisans of Peace” established in Paris in April 1949. In March 1950 the World Congress of the Partisans of Peace had adopted the Stockholm Appeal demanding the prohibition of atomic weapons, strict international control of the atomic bomb, and condemnation as a war criminal of the first government to use atomic weapons. A major effort of both the Partisans of Peace and subsequently the World Peace Council was to launch a large-scale signature drive calling for a Big Five “Peace Pact.” At the very time of the despatch of this circular airgram, a session of the World Peace Council was being held in East Berlin, which was to intensify the drive for a Big Five “Peace Pact”; and to exert pressure on the United Nations by sending an international delegation thereto to demand that the United Nations should return to its “assigned role” and “serve as the area of agreement between governments and not as the instrument of any dominant group”.

    For the text of the Stockholm Peace Appeal, see Foreign Relations, 1950, vol. ii, p. 396, footnote 1. For documentation on the Soviet peace propaganda campaign in 1950, see ibid., volume iv .