English

 

 

STALIN

1943

 

War Telegrams

 


No. 1

Sent on January 1, 1943

To Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I would ask you, Mr President, to convey to the United States Congress and accept my gratitude for the cordial greetings and good wishes sent to the Armed Forces of the Soviet Union in the name of the American people.

J. Stalin

 

* * *

 

No. 2

Sent on January 5, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to President Roosevelt

 

Your message concerning the Far East received. I thank you for the readiness to send 100 bombers to the Far East for the Soviet Union. I must say, however, that what we need at present is aircraft, not in the Far East, where the U.S.S.R. is not fighting, but on a front where a most cruel war is being waged against the Germans, that is, on the Soviet-German front. The arrival of those aircraft without pilots – because we have a sufficient number of pilots – on the South-Western or Central Front would play a notable part in the most important sectors of our struggle against Hitler.

As regards the course of the war on our fronts, so far our offensive is, on the whole, making satisfactory progress.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 2

Sent on January 5, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to Prime Minister Churchill

 

Both your messages received. Thank you for notifying me about the forthcoming meeting with the President.40 I shall be grateful for a report about the outcome of the meeting.

 

* * *

 

No. 3

Sent on January 13, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to President Roosevelt

 

Thank you for the decision to send 200 transport planes to the Soviet Union.

As to sending bomber units to the Far East, I have already pointed out in my previous messages that what we need is not air force units, but planes without pilots, because we have more than enough pilots of our own. Secondly, we need your help in the way of aircraft not in the Far East where the U.S.S.R. is not in a state of war, but on the Soviet-German front, where the need for aircraft aid is particularly great.

I was rather surprised at your proposal that General Bradley should inspect Russian military objectives in the Far East and elsewhere in the U.S.S.R. It should be perfectly obvious that only Russians can inspect Russian military objectives, just as U.S. military objectives can be inspected by none but Americans. There should be no unclarity in this matter.

Concerning General Marshall’s visit to the U.S.S.R. I must say I am not quite clear about his mission. Kindly advise me of the purpose of the visit so that I can consider the matter with full understanding and reply accordingly.

My colleagues are upset by the fact that the operations in North Africa have come to a standstill and, I gather, for a long time, too. Would you care to comment on the matter?

 

 

* * *

 

No. 4

Sent on January 16, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to Prime Minister Churchill

 

Your message of January 11 has reached me. Thanks for the information.

Our operations against the Germans on the fronts are so far making satisfactory progress. We are finishing the destruction of the German group encircled at Stalingrad.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 5

Sent on January 19, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to Prime Minister Churchill

 

Thank you for the information on the successful bombing of Berlin on the night of January 17. I wish the British Air Force further success, particularly in bombing Berlin.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 6

Sent on January 30, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Churchill and the President, Mr Roosevelt

 

Your friendly joint message reached me on January 27. Thank you for informing me of the Casablanca decisions about the operations to be undertaken by the U.S. and British armed forces in the first nine months of 1943. Assuming that your decisions on Germany are designed to defeat her by opening a second front in Europe in 1943, I should be grateful if you would inform me of the concrete operations planned and of their timing.

As to the Soviet Union, I can assure you that the Soviet armed forces will do all in their power to continue the offensive against Germany and her allies on the Soviet-German front. We expect to finish our winter campaign, circumstances permitting, in the first half of February. Our troops are tired, they are in need of rest and they will hardly be able to carry on the offensive beyond that period.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 7

Sent on January 31, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Churchill

 

Your message on the forthcoming meeting with the Turkish President received. I shall be grateful for information about the outcome of the meeting, the vital importance of which I appreciate.

Your wish that rumours about your visit be not contradicted will, naturally, be complied with.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 8

Sent on February 6, 1943

To Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States of America

The White House, Washington

 

Thank you for your congratulations on the victory of the Soviet troops at Stalingrad.

I am convinced that the joint combat operations of the armed forces of the United States, Great Britain and the Soviet Union will soon lead to victory over our common foe.

J. Stalin

 

 

* * *

 

No. 9

Sent on February 6, 1943

Personal Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill,

 

I received on February 2 and 3 your messages on the subject of Turkey. Thank you for the information on your talks with the Turkish leaders in Adana.

With reference to your statement that the Turks would respond to any gesture of friendship on the part of the Soviet Union I think it opportune to point out that in relation to Turkey we made, both some months before the outbreak of the Soviet-German war and after it had begun, a number of statements the friendly nature of which is known to the British Government. The Turks failed to react, apparently fearing that they might upset the Germans. It can be assumed that they will react in the same way to the gesture you suggest.

Turkey’s international position remains rather ticklish. On the one hand, she is linked to the U.S.S.R. by a treaty of friendship and neutrality, and to Great Britain by a treaty of mutual aid in resisting aggression; on the other hand, she is linked with Germany by a treaty of friendship concluded three-days before Germany attacked the U.S.S.R. I do not know how, in the present circumstances, Turkey expects to square fulfilment of her obligations to the U.S.S.R. and Great-Britain with fulfilment of her obligations to Germany. However, if the Turks want closer and more friendly relations with the U.S.S.R. let them say so. In that case the Soviet Union will meet them half-way.

 

2. I shall certainly not object to you saying that you informed me of the Anglo-Turkish meeting, although I cannot say the information was complete.

3. I wish you every success in the coming offensive of the First and Eighth British Armies and the U.S. troops in North Africa and speedy expulsion of the Italo-German troops from the African coast.

4. Please accept my thanks for the friendly congratulations on the surrender of Field Marshal Paulus and the destruction of the enemy troops encircled at Stalingrad.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 10

Most Secret and Personal Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Churchill

 

On February 12 I received your message on the forthcoming Anglo-American military operations.

Thanks for the additional information on the Casablanca decisions. On the other hand, I cannot but state certain considerations with reference to your message, which you tell me is a common reply conveying also the President’s opinion.

It appears from your message that the date – February – which you had fixed earlier for completing the operations in Tunisia is now set back to April. There is no need to demonstrate at length the undesirability of this delay in operations against the Germans and Italians. It is now, when the Soviet troops are still keeping up their broad offensive, that action by the Anglo- American troops in North Africa is imperative. Simultaneous pressure on Hitler from our front and from yours in Tunisia would be of great positive significance for our common cause and would create most serious difficulties for Hitler and Mussolini It would also expedite the operations you are planning in Sicily and the Eastern Mediterranean.

As to the opening of a second front in Europe, in particular in France, it is planned, judging by your communication, for August or September. As I see it, however, the situation calls for shortening these time limits to the utmost and for the opening of a second front in the West at a date much earlier than the one mentioned. So that the enemy should not be given a chance to recover, it is very important, to my mind, that the blow from the West, instead of being put off till the second half of the year, be delivered in spring or early summer.

According to reliable information at our disposal, since the end of December, when for some reason the Anglo-American operations in Tunisia were suspended, the Germans have moved 27 divisions, including five armoured divisions, to the Soviet- German front from France, the Low Countries and Germany. In other words, instead of the Soviet Union being aided by diverting German forces from the Soviet-German front, what we get is relief for Hitler, who, because of the let-up in Anglo-American operations in Tunisia, was able to move additional troops against the Russians.

The foregoing indicates that the sooner we make joint use of the Hitler camp’s difficulties at the front, the more grounds we shall have for anticipating early defeat for Hitler. Unless we take account of this and profit by the present moment to further our common interests, it may well be that, having gained a respite and rallied their forces, the Germans might recover. It is clear to you and us that such an undesirable miscalculation should not be made.

 

2. I have deemed it necessary to send this reply to Mr Roosevelt as well.

 

3. Thank you for your cordial congratulations on the liberation of Rostov. This morning our troops have taken Kharkov.

February 16, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 11

February 16, 1943

Most Secret and Personal Message from Premier Stalin to the President, Mr Roosevelt

 

On February 12 I received from Mr Churchill a message giving additional information on the decisions taken by the two of you at Casablanca. Since, according to Mr Churchill, his message is a common reply giving your opinion as well, I should like to make some comments, which I have conveyed to Mr Churchill.

It appears from the message that the date – February – fixed earlier for completing the operations in Tunisia is now set back to April. There is no need to demonstrate at length the undesirability of this delay in operations against the Germans and Italians. It is now, when the Soviet troops are still keeping up their broad offensive, that action by the Anglo-American troops in North Africa is imperative. Simultaneous pressure on Hitler from our front and from yours in Tunisia would be of great positive significance for our common cause and would create most serious difficulties for Hitler and Mussolini. It would also expedite the operations you are planning in Sicily and the Eastern Mediterranean.

As to the opening of a second front in Europe, in particular in France, it is planned, judging by your communication, for August or September. As I see it, however, the situation calls for shortening these time limits to the utmost and for the opening of a second front in the West at a date much earlier than the one mentioned. So that the enemy should not be given a chance to recover, it is very important, to my mind, that the blow from the West, instead of being put off till the second half of the year, be delivered in spring or early summer.

According to reliable information at our disposal, since the end of December, when for some reason the Anglo-American operations in Tunisia were suspended, the Germans have moved 27 divisions, including five armoured divisions, to the Soviet- German front from France, the Low Countries and Germany. In other words, instead of the Soviet Union being aided by diverting German forces from the Soviet-German front, what we get is relief for Hitler, who, because of the let-up in Anglo- American operations in Tunisia, was able to move additional troops against the Russians.

The foregoing indicates that the sooner we make joint use of the Hitler camp’s difficulties at the front, the more grounds we shall have for anticipating early defeat for Hitler. Unless we take account of this and profit by the present moment to further our common interests, it may well be that, having gained a respite and rallied their forces, the Germans might recover. It is clear to you and us that such an undesirable miscalculation should not be made.

February 16, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 12

Sent on February 23, 1943

To the President of the United States of America, Franklin D. Roosevelt

Washington

 

Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your friendly message on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Red Army and your high praise of its combat achievements.

I share your confidence that these achievements clear the way for the final defeat of our common enemy, who must and shall be crushed by the combined might of our countries and of all the freedom-loving nations.

J. Stalin

 

 

* * *

 

No. 13

Sent on March 2, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill

 

I have received your message of February 17 on the Turkish Government’s desire to enter upon exchange of views with the Soviet Government. On February 24 I also received from you three documents, transmitted by Mr Kerr: (1) a brief record of the statements made by the Prime Minister to President Ismet and the Turkish delegation at the Adana Conference; (2) the agreed conclusions of the Anglo-Turkish conference held in Adana on January 30-31, 1943; and (3) an aide-mémoire on post-war security.

Thank you for the information.

I find it necessary to inform you that on February 13 the Turkish Foreign Minister advised the Soviet Ambassador in Ankara of his Government’s desire to begin negotiations with the Soviet Government to improve Soviet-Turkish relations. The Soviet Government replied through its Ambassador in Ankara that it welcomed the Turkish Government’s desire to improve Soviet-Turkish relations, and signified its readiness to begin negotiations. We are now waiting for the return to Moscow of the Turkish Ambassador with whom we plan to begin the negotiations.

I take this occasion sincerely to wish you complete recovery and a speedy return to good health.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 14

Sent on March 3, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill

 

I salute the British Air Force, which successfully raided Berlin last night. I regret that the Soviet Air Force, busy fighting the Germans at the front, is, for the time being, unable to take part in bombing Berlin.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 15

Sent on March 6, 1943

Most Secret and Personal Message From Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your message informing me of the successful bombing of Hamburg received. I salute the British Air Force and welcome your intention to increase the bomber attacks on Germany.

Thank you for your congratulations on our capture of Rzhev. Today our troops have taken Gzhatsk.

I look forward to a reply from you and Mr Roosevelt to my message of February 16.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 16

Sent on March 15, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

On March 12 Mr Standley, the U.S. Ambassador, handed to Mr Molotov the following message from the U.S. Government.

The U.S. Government offers to mediate between the U.S.S.R. and Finland with a view to ascertaining the possibility of a separate peace between them. Asked by Mr Molotov whether the U.S. Government knew that Finland wanted peace and what her attitude was, Mr Standley said he had nothing to say on the matter.

As is known, the Anglo-Soviet Treaty of May 26, 1942, provides that our two countries shall not negotiate a separate peace either with Germany or with her allies other than by mutual agreement. This, for me, is an inviolable provision.

I therefore consider it my duty, first, to inform you of the American proposal and, secondly, to ask your opinion on the matter.

I have no reason to believe that Finland really wants peace, that she has already resolved to break with Germany and is willing to offer acceptable terms. She has probably not yet broken loose from Hitler’s clutches, if she wants at all to do so. The present rulers of Finland, who signed a peace treaty with the Soviet Union and then tore it up and, in alliance with Germany, attacked the Soviet Union, are hardly capable of breaking with Hitler.

Nevertheless, in view of the U.S. proposal, I considered it my duty to advise you of the foregoing.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 17

March 15, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your messages of March 6 and 13, informing me of successful air raids on Essen, Stuttgart, Munich and Nuremberg, have reached me. With all my heart I salute the British Air Force, which is stepping up its bombing of German industrial centres.

Your wish that paragraphs 8, 9 and 10 of your message of March 11 be treated as special military information shall be complied with.

Thanks for your congratulations on the capture of Vyazma. I regret to say that we have had to withdraw from Kharkov today.

As soon as we receive your film of the Eighth Army, of which you advised me in a special message of March 11, I shall see it and we shall arrange for our Army and population to see it. I realise how valuable it will be for our fighting alliance. Allow me to send our Soviet film Stalingrad to you personally.

March 15, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 18

March 15, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your reply to my message of February 16.

It appears from your communication that Anglo-American operations in North Africa are not being hastened, but are, in fact, being postponed till the end of April. Moreover, even this date is given in rather vague terms. In other words, at the height of fighting against the Hitler troops, in February and March, the Anglo-American offensive in North Africa, far from having been stepped up, has been called off, and the date fixed by yourself has been set back. Meanwhile Germany has succeeded in moving from the West 36 divisions, including six armoured ones, to be used against Soviet troops. The difficulties that this has created for the Soviet Army and the extent to which it has eased the German position on the Soviet-German front will be readily appreciated.

For all its importance “Husky” can by no means replace a second front in France, but I fully welcome, of course, your intention to expedite the operation.

I still regard the opening of a second front in France as the important thing. You will recall that you thought it possible to open a second front as early as 1942 or this spring at the latest. The grounds for doing so were weighty enough. Hence it should be obvious why I stressed in my previous message the need for striking in the West not later than this spring or early summer.

The Soviet troops fought strenuously all winter and are continuing to do so, while Hitler is taking important measures to rehabilitate and reinforce his Army for the spring and summer operations against the U.S.S.R.; it is therefore particularly essential for us that the blow from the West be no longer delayed, that it be delivered this spring or in early summer.

I have studied the arguments you set out in paragraphs 8, 9 and 10 as indicative of the difficulties of Anglo-American operations in Europe. I grant the difficulties. Nevertheless, I think I must give a most emphatic warning, in the interest of our common cause, of the grave danger with which further delay in opening a second front in France is fraught. For this reason the vagueness of your statements about the contemplated Anglo- American offensive across the Channel causes apprehension which I cannot conceal from you.

March 15, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 19

March 16, 1943

Most Secret and Personal Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Roosevelt

 

Now that I have Mr Churchill’s reply to my message of February 16, I consider it my duty to answer yours of February 22, which likewise was a reply to mine of February 16.

I learned from Mr Churchill’s message that Anglo-American operations in North Africa, far from being accelerated, are being postponed till the end of April; indeed, even this date is given in rather vague terms. In other words, at the height of the fighting against the Hitler troops – in February and March – the Anglo-American offensive in North Africa, far from having been stepped up, has been called off altogether, and the time fixed for it has been set back. Meanwhile Germany has succeeded in moving from the West 36 divisions, including six armoured, to be used against the Soviet troops. The difficulties that this has created for the Soviet Army and the extent to which it has eased the German position on the Soviet-German front will be readily appreciated.

Mr Churchill has also informed me that the Anglo-American operation against Sicily is planned for June. For all its importance that operation can by no means replace a second front in France. But I fully welcome, of course, your intention to expedite the carrying out of the operation.

At the same time I consider it my duty to state that the early opening of a second front in France is the most important thing. You will recall that you and Mr Churchill thought it possible to open a second front as early as 1942 or this spring at the latest. The grounds for doing so were weighty enough. Hence it should be obvious why I stressed in my message of February 16 the need for striking in the West not later than this spring or early summer.

The Soviet troops have fought strenuously all winter and are continuing to do so, while Hitler is taking important measures to rehabilitate and reinforce his Army for the spring and summer operations against the U.S.S.R.; it is therefore particularly essential for us that the blow from the West be no longer delayed, that it be delivered this spring or in early summer.

I appreciate the considerable difficulties caused by a shortage of transport facilities, of which you advised me in your message. Nevertheless, I think I must give a most emphatic warning, in the interest of our common cause, of the grave danger with which further delay in opening a second front in France is fraught. That is why the vagueness of both your reply and Mr Churchill’s as to the opening of a second front in France causes me concern, which I cannot help expressing.

March 16, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 20

Sent on March 27, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your communication of the main battle being fought in Tunisia. I wish the British and U.S. troops complete and speedy success. I hope you will now be able to overwhelm and defeat the enemy and expel him from Tunisia.

I also hope that the air offensive against Germany will gain in momentum. I shall be obliged for the reels showing the destruction wrought in Essen.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 21

March 29, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message of March 28.

I congratulate the British Air Force on its latest big and successful raid on Berlin.

I hope the British armoured troops will be able to take full advantage of the improved situation in Tunisia and give the enemy no respite.

Last night I saw, with my colleagues, the film Desert Victory, you have sent us, and was greatly impressed. It splendidly shows how Britain is fighting, and skilfully exposes those scoundrels – we have them in our country too – who allege that Britain is not fighting but merely looking on. I eagerly look forward to another film of the same kind, showing your victory in Tunisia.

Desert Victory will be circulated to all our armies at the front and shown to the public.

March 29, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 22

Sent on April 2, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message of March 30 advising me that you and Mr Roosevelt are compelled by necessity to postpone despatch of the convoys to the U.S.S.R. till September. I regard this unexpected step as a catastrophic cut in the delivery of strategic raw materials and munitions to the Soviet Union by Great Britain and the U.S.A., because the Pacific route is limited in shipping and none too reliable, and the southern route has small clearance capacity, which means that those two routes cannot make up for the cessation of deliveries by the northern route. It goes without saying that this circumstance cannot but affect the position of the Soviet troops.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 23

April 7, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your two messages of April 6, as well as today’s message on the important advance made by your troops in Tunisia. This is a notable success – congratulations. I hope that this time the Anglo-American troops will completely overcome and beat Rommel and the other Hitler bands in Tunisia. That would be of great value to our common struggle as a whole.

I welcome the stepped up bombing of Essen, Berlin, Kiel and other industrial centres of Germany. Every blow delivered by your Air Force to vital German centres evokes a most lively echo in the hearts of many millions throughout the length and breadth of our country.

April 7, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 24

April 12, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your messages of April 10 and 11 have reached me.

The rapid progress of the British and U.S. offensive in Tunisia is an important achievement in the war against Hitler and Mussolini. I hope you finish off the enemy and take as many prisoners and as much booty as possible.

We are delighted that you are giving Hitler no respite. To your vigorous and successful bombings of large German towns we are now adding our own air raids on German industrial centres in East Prussia. Thank you for the film showing the effects of the raids on Essen. Both this and the other films which you have promised us will be shown to the public and the Army.

The fighter aircraft which you have released by cancelling convoys and intend to deliver to us will be of great value. I am also grateful for the offer to send us sixty 40-mm. cannon Hurricane II D aeroplanes. We are badly in need of such aircraft, especially for use against heavy tanks. I hope that the efforts of yourself and Mr Harriman to plan and guarantee the despatch of aircraft to the U.S.S.R. will be crowned with speedy success.

Our people greatly appreciate the warm sentiments and sympathy displayed by the British people expressed in the establishment of the medical relief fund mentioned by you. Please convey my thanks to Mrs Churchill, who heads the fund, for her vigorous work.

Today I received Lieutenant-General Martel, who handed me your letter. He will certainly be afforded every opportunity to acquaint himself with the Red Army and its battle experience. April 12, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 25

April 19, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message asking my consent to convey to the British bomber squadrons my congratulations on the bombing of Essen, Berlin and other industrial centres of Germany. I have no objection to your proposal, of course, and I leave the matter to you. I am glad you intend to go on bombing German towns on an ever-increasing scale.

Events in Tunisia seem to be progressing favourably. I wish you complete victory.

Your mention of the Germans’ intention to use gas on our front is borne out by our information. It goes without saying that I fully support your proposal to warn Hitler and his allies and to threaten them with powerful chemical retaliation should they undertake a gas attack on our front. The Soviet troops will in their turn prepare for a rebuff.

April 19, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 26

April 21, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

The behaviour of the Polish Government towards the U.S.S.R. of late is, in the view of the Soviet Government, completely abnormal and contrary to all the rules and standards governing relations between two allied states.

The anti-Soviet slander campaign launched by the German fascists in connection with the Polish officers whom they themselves murdered in the Smolensk area, in German-occupied territory, was immediately seized upon by the Sikorski Government and is being fanned in every way by the Polish official press. Far from countering the infamous fascist slander against the U.S.S.R., the Sikorski Government has not found it necessary even to address questions to the Soviet Government or to request information on the matter.

The Hitler authorities, having perpetrated a monstrous crime against the Polish officers, are now staging a farcical investigation, using for the purpose certain pro-fascist Polish elements picked by themselves in occupied Poland, where everything is under Hitler’s heel and where no honest Pole can open his mouth.

Both the Sikorski and Hitler Governments have enlisted for the “investigation” the aid of the International Red Cross, which, under a terror régime of gallows and wholesale extermination of the civil population, is forced to take part in the investigation farce directed by Hitler. It is obvious that this “investigation,” which, moreover, is being carried out behind the Soviet Government’s back, cannot enjoy the confidence of anyone with a semblance of honesty.

The fact that the anti-Soviet campaign has been started simultaneously in the German and Polish press and follows identical lines is indubitable evidence of contact and collusion between Hitler – the Allies’ enemy – and the Sikorski Government in this hostile campaign.

At a time when the peoples of the Soviet Union are shedding their blood in a grim struggle against Hitler Germany and bending their energies to defeat the common foe of the freedom-loving democratic countries, the Sikorski Government is striking a treacherous blow at the Soviet Union to help Hitler tyranny.

These circumstances compel the Soviet Government to consider that the present Polish Government, having descended to collusion with the Hitler Government, has, in practice, severed its relations of alliance with the U.S.S.R. and adopted a hostile attitude to the Soviet Union.

For those reasons the Soviet Government has decided to interrupt relations with that Government.

I think it necessary to inform you of the foregoing, and I trust that the U.S. Government will appreciate the motives that necessitated this forced step on the part of the Soviet Government.

April 21, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 27

April 21, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

The behaviour of the Polish Government towards the U.S.S.R. of late is, in the view of the Soviet Government, completely abnormal and contrary to all the rules and standards governing relations between two allied states.

The anti-Soviet slander campaign launched by the German fascists in connection with the Polish officers whom they themselves murdered in the Smolensk area, in German-occupied territory, was immediately seized upon by the Sikorski Government and is being fanned in every way by the Polish official press. Far from countering the infamous fascist slander against the U.S.S.R., the Sikorski Government has not found it necessary even to address questions to the Soviet Government or to request information on the matter.

The Hitler authorities, having perpetrated a monstrous crime against the Polish officers, are now staging a farcical investigation, using for the purpose certain pro-fascist Polish elements picked by themselves in occupied Poland, where everything is under Hitler’s heel and where no honest Pole can open his mouth.

Both the Sikorski and Hitler Governments have enlisted for the “investigation” the aid of the International Red Cross, which, under a terror régime of gallows and wholesale extermination of the civil population, is forced to take part in the investigation farce directed by Hitler. It is obvious that this “investigation,” which, moreover, is being carried out behind the Soviet Government’s back, cannot enjoy the confidence of anyone with a semblance of honesty.

The fact that the anti-Soviet campaign has been started simultaneously in the German and Polish press and follows identical lines is indubitable evidence of contact and collusion between Hitler – the Allies’ enemy – and the Sikorski Government in this hostile campaign.

At a time when the peoples of the Soviet Union are shedding their blood in a grim struggle against Hitler Germany and bending their energies to defeat the common foe of the freedom- loving democratic countries, the Sikorski Government is striking a treacherous blow at the Soviet Union to help Hitler tyranny.

These circumstances compel the Soviet Government to consider that the present Polish Government, having descended to collusion with the Hitler Government, has, in practice, severed its relations of alliance with the U.S.S.R. and adopted a hostile attitude to the Soviet Union.

For these reasons the Soviet Government has decided to interrupt relations with that Government.

I think it necessary to inform you of the foregoing, and I trust that the British Government will appreciate the motives that necessitated this forced step on the part of the Soviet Government.

April 21, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 28

April 25, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message concerning Polish affairs. Thank you for your sympathetic stand on this issue. I must tell you, however, that the matter of interrupting relations with the Polish Government has already been settled and that today V. M. Molotov delivered a Note to the Polish Government. All my colleagues insisted on this because the Polish official press is not only keeping up its hostile campaign but is actually intensifying it day by day. I also had to take cognisance of Soviet public opinion, which is deeply outraged by the ingratitude and treachery of the Polish Government.

As to publishing the Soviet document on interrupting relations with the Polish Government, I fear that it is simply impossible to avoid doing so.

April 25, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 29

April 29, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I am sorry to say your reply did not reach me until April 27, whereas on April 25 the Soviet Government was compelled to interrupt relations with the Polish Government.

As the Polish Government for nearly two weeks, far from ceasing a campaign hostile to the Soviet Union and beneficial to none but Hitler, intensified it in its press and on the radio Soviet public opinion was deeply outraged by such conduct, and hence the Soviet Government could no longer defer action.

It may well be that Mr Sikorski himself has no intention of collaborating with the Hitler gangsters. I should be happy to see this surmise borne out by facts. But my impression is that certain pro-Hitler elements – either inside the Polish Government or in its environment – have induced Mr Sikorski to follow them, with the result that the Polish Government has come to be, possibly against its own will, a tool in Hitler’s hands in the anti-Soviet campaign of which you are aware.

I, too, believe that Prime Minister Churchill will find ways to bring the Polish Government to reason and help it proceed henceforward in a spirit of common sense. I may be wrong, but I believe that one of our duties as Allies is to prevent this or that Ally from taking hostile action against any other Ally to the joy and benefit of the common enemy.

As regards Polish subjects in the U.S.S.R. and their future, I can assure you that Soviet Government agencies have always treated and will continue to treat them as comrades, as people near and dear to us. It should be obvious that there never has been, nor could have been, any question of their being deported from the U.S.S.R. If, however, they themselves wish to leave the U.S.S.R., Soviet Government agencies will not hinder them, just as they have never done, and will, in fact, try to help them.

April 29, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 30

May 4, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

In sending my message of April 21 on interrupting relations with the Polish Government, I was guided by the fact that the notorious anti-Soviet press campaign, launched by the Poles as early as April 15 and aggravated first by the statement of the Polish Ministry of National Defence and later by the Polish Government’s declaration of April 17, had not encountered any opposition in London; moreover, the Soviet Government had not been forewarned of the anti-Soviet campaign prepared by the Poles, although it is hard to imagine that the British Government was not informed of the contemplated campaign. I think that from the point of view of the spirit of our treaty it would have been only natural to dissuade one ally from striking a blow at another, particularly if the blow directly helped the common enemy. That, at any rate, is how I see the duty of an ally. Nevertheless, I thought it necessary to inform you of the Soviet Government’s view of Polish-Soviet relations. Since the Poles continued their anti-Soviet smear campaign without any opposition in London, the patience of the Soviet Government could not have been expected to be infinite.

You tell me that you will enforce proper discipline in the Polish press. I thank you for that, but I doubt if it will be as easy as all that to impose discipline on the present Polish Government, its following of pro-Hitler boosters and its fanatical press. Although you informed me that the Polish Government wanted to work loyally with the Soviet Government, I question its ability to keep its world. The Polish Government is surrounded by such a vast pro-Hitler following, and Sikorski is so helpless and browbeaten that there is no certainty at all of his being able to remain loyal in relations with the Soviet Union even granting that he wants to be loyal.

As to the rumours, circulated by the Hitlerites, that a new Polish Government is being formed in the U.S.S.R., there is hardly any need to deny this fabrication. Our Ambassador has already told you so. This does not rule out Great Britain, and the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A. taking measures to improve the composition of the present Polish Government in terms of consolidating the Allied united front against Hitler. The sooner this is done, the better. Upon his return from the U.S.A. Mr Eden told Maisky that President Roosevelt’s adherents in the U.S.A. thought that the present Polish Government had no prospects for the future and doubted whether it had any chance of returning to Poland and assuming power, although they would like to retain Sikorski. I think the Americans are not so very far from the truth as regards the prospects of the present Polish Government.

As regards the Polish citizens in the U.S.S.R., whose number is not great, and the families of the Polish soldiers evacuated to Iran, the Soviet Government has never raised any obstacles to their departure from the U.S.S.R.

2. I have received your message on the latest events in Tunisia. Thank you for the information. I am glad of the success of the Anglo-American troops and wish them still greater success. May 4, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 31

Sent on May 8, 1943

For President Roosevelt

Washington

 

I congratulate you and the gallant U.S. and British troops on the brilliant victory which has resulted in the liberation of Bizerta and Tunis from Hitler tyranny. I wish you further success.

J. Stalin

 

 

* * *

 

No. 32

May 26, 1943

J. V. Stalin to F. Roosevelt

 

My dear Mr Roosevelt,

Mr Davies has delivered your message to me.

I agree that this summer – possibly as early as June – we should expect the Hitlerites to launch a new major offensive on the Soviet-German front. Hitler has already concentrated about 200 German divisions and up to 30 divisions of his allies for use against us. We are getting ready to repel the new German offensive and to launch counter-attacks, but we are short of aircraft and aircraft fuel. Of course, it is at the moment impossible to foresee all the military and other steps that we may have to take. That will depend on the course of events on our front. A good deal will also depend on the speed and vigour with which Anglo-American military operations are launched in Europe.

I have mentioned these important circumstances to explain why my reply to your suggestion for a meeting between us cannot be quite specific as yet.

I agree that the time is ripe for such a meeting and that it should not be delayed. But I beg you to assess properly the importance of the circumstances I have referred to, because the summer months will be exceedingly trying for the Soviet armies. As I do not know how events will develop on the Soviet-German front in June, I shall not be able to leave Moscow during that month. I therefore suggest holding the meeting in July or August. If you agree, I shall let you know two weeks before the date of the meeting just when it could be held in July or August. If, after being notified by me, you agree to the date suggested, I could arrive in time.

Mr Davies will personally inform you of the meeting place.

I agree with you about cutting down the number of your advisers and mine.

Thank you for sending Mr Davies to Moscow, a man familiar with the Soviet Union and who can pass impartial judgment on things.

Yours very sincerely,

J. Stalin

May 26, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 33

Sent on June 11, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Churchill

 

I am sending you the text of my personal message in reply to the President’s message about the decisions on strategic matters which you and Mr Roosevelt adopted in May.

 

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Roosevelt

 

Your message informing me of certain decisions on strategic matters adopted by you and Mr Churchill reached me on June 4. Thank you for the information.

It appears from your communication that the decisions run counter to those reached by you and Mr Churchill earlier this year concerning the date for a second front in Western Europe. You will doubtless recall that the joint message of January 26, sent by you and Mr Churchill, announced the decision adopted at that time to divert considerable German ground and air forces from the Russian front and bring Germany to her knees in 1943.

Then on February 12 Mr Churchill communicated on his own behalf and yours the specified time of the Anglo-American operation in Tunisia and the Mediterranean, as well as on the west coast of Europe. The communication said that Great Britain and the United States were vigorously preparing to cross the Channel in August 1943 and that if the operation were hindered by weather or other causes, then it would be prepared with an eye to being carried out in greater force in September 1943.

Now, in May 1943, you and Mr Churchill have decided to postpone the Anglo-American invasion of Western Europe until the spring of 1944. In other words, the opening of the second front in Western Europe, previously postponed from 1942 till 1943, is now being put off again, this time till the spring of 1944.

Your decision creates exceptional difficulties for the Soviet Union, which, straining all its resources, for the past two years, has been engaged against the main forces of Germany and her satellites, and leaves the Soviet Army, which is fighting not only for its country, but also for its Allies, to do the job alone, almost single-handed, against an enemy that is still very strong and formidable.

Need I speak of the dishearteningly negative impression that this fresh postponement of the second front and the withholding from our Army, which has sacrificed so much, of the anticipated substantial support by the Anglo-American armies, will produce in the Soviet Union – both among the people and in the Army?

As for the Soviet Government, it cannot align itself with this decision, which, moreover, was adopted without its participation and without any attempt at a joint discussion of this highly important matter and which may gravely affect the subsequent course of the war.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 34

June 24, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Roosevelt

 

I am sending you the text of my reply to a message from Mr Churchill, with which you are in full accord, as stated in the message delivered to me by Mr Standley on June 20.

June 24, 1943

 

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your message of June 19 received.

I fully realise the difficulty of organising an Anglo-American invasion of Western Europe, in particular, of transferring troops across the Channel. The difficulty could also be discerned in your communications.

From your messages of last year and this I gained the conviction that you and the President were fully aware of the difficulties of organising such an operation and were preparing the invasion accordingly, with due regard to the difficulties and the necessary exertion of forces and means. Even last year you told me that a large-scale invasion of Europe by Anglo-American troops would be effected in 1943. In the Aide-Memoire handed to V. M. Molotov on June 10, 1942, you wrote:

“Finally, and most important of all, we are concentrating our maximum effort on the organisation and preparation of a large-scale invasion of the Continent of Europe by British and American forces in 1943. We are setting no limit to the scope and objectives of this campaign, which will be carried out in the first instance by over a million men, British and American, with air forces of appropriate strength.”

Early this year you twice informed me, on your own behalf and on behalf of the President, of decisions concerning an Anglo- American invasion of Western Europe intended to “divert strong German land and air forces from the Russian front.” You had set yourself the task of bringing Germany to her knees as early as 1943, and named September as the latest date for the invasion.

In your message of January 26 you wrote:

“We have been in conference with our military advisers and have decided on the operations which are to be undertaken by the American and British forces in the first nine months of 1943. We wish to inform you of our intentions at once. We believe that these operations together with your powerful offensive, may well bring Germany to her knees in 1943.”

In your next message, which I received on February 12, you wrote, specifying the date of the invasion of Western Europe, decided on by you and the President:

 “We are also pushing preparations to the limit of our resources for a cross-Channel operation in August, in which British and United States units would participate. Here again, shipping and assault-landing craft will be the limiting factors. If the operation is delayed by the weather or other reasons, it will be prepared with stronger forces for September.”

Last February, when you wrote to me about those plans and the date for invading Western Europe, the difficulties of that operation were greater than they are now. Since then the Germans have suffered more than one defeat: they were pushed back by our troops in the South, where they suffered appreciable loss; they were beaten in North Africa and expelled by the Anglo-American troops; in submarine warfare, too, the Germans found themselves in a bigger predicament than ever, while Anglo-American superiority increased substantially; it is also known that the Americans and British have won air superiority in Europe and that their navies and mercantile marines have grown in power.

It follows that the conditions for opening a second front in Western Europe during 1943, far from deteriorating, have, indeed, greatly improved.

That being so, the Soviet Government could not have imagined that the British and U.S. Governments would revise the decision to invade Western Europe, which they had adopted early this year. In fact, the Soviet Government was fully entitled to expect that the Anglo-American decision would be carried out, that appropriate preparations were under way and that the second front in Western Europe would at last be opened in 1943.

That is why, when you now write that “it would be no help to Russia if we threw away a hundred thousand men in a disastrous cross-Channel attack,” all I can do is remind you of the following:

First, your own Aide-Mémoire of June 1942 in which you declared that preparations were under way for an invasion, not by a hundred thousand, but by an Anglo-American force exceeding one million men at the very start of the operation.

Second, your February message, which mentioned extensive measures preparatory to the invasion of Western Europe in August or September 1943, which, apparently, envisaged an operation, not by a hundred thousand men, but by an adequate force.

So when you now declare: “I cannot see how a great British defeat and slaughter would aid the Soviet armies,” is it not clear that a statement of this kind in relation to the Soviet Union is utterly groundless and directly contradicts your previous and responsible decisions, listed above, about extensive and vigorous measures by the British and Americans to organise the invasion this year, measures on which the complete success of the operation should hinge.

I shall not enlarge on the fact that this responsible decision, revoking your previous decisions on the invasion of Western Europe, was reached by you and the President without Soviet participation and without inviting its representatives to the Washington conference, although you cannot but be aware that the Soviet Union’s role in the war against Germany and its interest in the problems of the second front are great enough.

You say that you “quite understand” my disappointment. I must tell you that the point here is not just the disappointment of the Soviet Government, but the preservation of its confidence in its Allies, a confidence which is being subjected to severe stress. One should not forget that it is a question of saving millions of lives in the occupied areas of Western Europe and Russia and of reducing the enormous sacrifices of the Soviet armies, compared with which the sacrifices of the Anglo-American armies are insignificant.

June 24, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 35

June 26, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill

 

I have received your message of June 23, 1943, in which you point out that for the present the Governments of Great Britain and the United States of America will refrain from recognising the French National Committee of Liberation. In support of your attitude you say that Headquarters cannot be sure what action General de Gaulle may undertake or of his friendly feelings for the Allies.

We had the impression that the British Government had thus far supported General de Gaulle, which seemed only natural, since from the moment of the French surrender General de Gaulle had headed the anti-Hitler forces of France and the struggle of the French patriots united around Fighting France. Subsequent developments in North Africa, beginning with November 1942, and the part played by French armed forces under Generals Giraud and de Gaulle in the operations carried out by the Anglo-American troops provided the conditions for their union. All the Allies concurred that this union was advisable, and there were no doubts as to this point. Recognition of the existing united agency in the form of the French National Committee of Liberation was to be a result of the aspirations displayed and the efforts made in this matter. All the more so because, after the French National Committee in the persons of Giraud and de Gaulle officially requested Allied recognition of the Committee, the Soviet Government felt that refusal to grant the request would be incomprehensible to French public opinion.

At the moment the Soviet Government has no information that could support the British Government’s present attitude to the French National Committee of Liberation and, in particular, to General de Gaulle.

Since, however, the British Government requests that the recognition of the French Committee be postponed and through its Ambassador has given the assurance that no steps will be taken in this matter without consulting the Soviet Government, the Soviet Government is prepared to meet the British Government half-way.

I hope you will take cognisance of the Soviet interest in French affairs and not deny the Soviet Government timely information, which is indispensable for the adoption of appropriate decisions.

June 26, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 36

Sent on June 26, 1943

To Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States of America

Washington

 

Thank you for your high commendation of the resolve and bravery of the Soviet people and Armed Forces in fighting the Hitler invaders.

As a result of the two years of the Soviet Union’s struggle against Hitler Germany and her vassals and of the telling blows delivered by the Allies to the Italo-German armies in North Africa, conditions have been created for the final defeat of our common enemy.

I have no doubt that the sooner we strike from east and west our joint, combined blows at the enemy, the sooner victory will come.

J. Stalin

 

 

* * *

 

No. 37

August 8, 1943

Secret and Personal Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I can answer your latest message – that of July 16 – now that I am back from the front. I have no doubt that you are aware of our military position and will appreciate the delay.

Contrary to our expectations, the Germans launched their offensive in July, not in June, and now fighting is in full swing on the Soviet-German front. The Soviet armies have, as you know, repulsed the July offensive of the Hitlerites, switched to the offensive, taking Orel and Belgorod, and are still pressing the enemy.

It will be readily seen that in the present crucial situation on the Soviet-German front the Soviet Command has to exert great efforts and display the utmost vigilance towards the enemy’s activities. For this reason I, too, am compelled to put aside other problems and my other duties, to a certain degree, except my chief duty, that of directing the front. I have to go to the various front sectors more frequently and to subordinate all else to the interests of the front.

I hope you will appreciate that in these circumstances I cannot start on a distant journey and shall unfortunately be unable during the summer and autumn to make good the promise I gave you through Mr Davies.

I am very sorry about this, but circumstances, as you know, are stronger than people, and so we must bow to them.

I consider it highly advisable for responsible representatives of our two countries to meet. In the present military situation the meeting could be held either in Astrakhan or in Archangel If that does not suit you personally, then you might send a fully authorised man of confidence to one of these two towns. If you accept, we should specify beforehand the range of problems to be discussed at the conference and draft appropriate proposals.

I have already told Mr Davies that I have no objection to Mr Churchill attending the conference and to the bipartite conference being turned into a tripartite one. I still hold this view provided you have no objections.

2. I take this opportunity to congratulate you and the Anglo- American forces on their outstanding success in Sicily, which has led to the fall of Mussolini and his gang.

3. Thank you for congratulating the Red Army and the Soviet people on their success at Orel.

August 8, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 38

August 9, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have just come back from the front and have read the British Government’s message of August 7.

I agree that a meeting of the three heads of the Governments is highly desirable. The meeting should be arranged at the earliest opportunity and the place and time of the meeting coordinated with the President.

At the same time I must say that, the situation on the Soviet- German front being what it is, I am, unfortunately, unable to leave and lose touch with the front even for one week. Although we have had certain successes at the front lately, it is now that the Soviet troops and the Soviet Command must exert the utmost effort and show particular vigilance towards the new actions which the enemy may undertake. In view of this I am obliged to be with the troops and visit this or that sector of our front more often than usual. Hence I cannot at the moment travel to meet you and the President at Scapa Flow or any other distant point.

Nevertheless, in order not to put off elucidation of the problems which interest our countries, it would be advisable to hold a meeting of authorised representatives of our states, and we could agree on the place and time of meeting in the near future.

Besides, we should agree beforehand on the range of problems to be discussed and on the draft proposals to be approved. Unless this is done the meeting can hardly yield tangible results.

2. I take this opportunity to congratulate the British Government and the Anglo-American troops on their highly successful operations in Sicily, which have already led to the fall of Mussolini and the collapse of his gang.

August 9, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 39

August 22, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr F. D. Roosevelt and the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill,

 

I have received your message on the negotiations with the Italians and on the new armistice terms for Italy. Thank you for the information.

Mr Eden informed Sobolev that Moscow had been kept fully informed of the negotiations with Italy. I must say, however, that Mr Eden’s statement is at variance with the facts, for I received your message with large omissions and without the closing paragraphs. It should be said, therefore, that the Soviet Government has not been kept informed of the Anglo- American negotiations with the Italians. Mr Kerr assures me that he will shortly receive the full text of your message, but three days have passed and Ambassador Kerr has yet to give it to me. I cannot understand how this delay could have come about in transmitting information on so important a matter.

 

2. I think the time is ripe for us to set up a military-political commission of representatives of the three countries – the U.S.A., Great Britain and the U.S.S.R. – for consideration of problems related to negotiations with various Governments falling away from Germany. To date it has been like this: the U.S.A. and Britain reach agreement between themselves while the U.S.S.R. is informed of the agreement between the two powers as a third party looking passively on. I must say that this situation cannot be tolerated any longer. I propose setting up the commission and making Sicily its seat for the time being.

 

3. I am looking forward to receiving the full text of your message on the negotiations with Italy.

August 22, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 40

August 24, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill, and the President, Mr F. D. Roosevelt

 

Your joint message of August 19 has reached me.

I fully share your opinion and that of Mr Roosevelt concerning the importance of a meeting between the three of us. At the same time I earnestly request you to appreciate my position at a time when our armies are exerting themselves to the utmost against the main forces of Hitler and when Hitler, far from having withdrawn a single division from our front, has already moved, and keeps moving, fresh divisions to the Soviet- German front. At a moment like this I cannot, in the opinion of all my colleagues, leave the front without injury to our military operations to go to so distant a point as Fairbanks, even though, had the situation on our front been different, Fairbanks would doubtless have been a perfectly suitable place for our meeting, as I indeed thought before.

As to a meeting between representatives of our states, and perhaps representatives in charge of foreign affairs, I share your view of the advisability of such a meeting in the near future. However, the meeting should not be restricted to the narrow bounds of investigation, but should concern itself with practical preparations so that after the conference our Governments might take specific decisions and thus avoid delay in reaching decisions on urgent matters.

Hence I think I must revert to my proposal for fixing beforehand the range of problems to be discussed by the representatives of the three states and drafting the proposals they will have to discuss and submit to our Governments for final decision.

 

2. Yesterday we received from Mr Kerr the addenda and corrections to the joint message in which you and Mr Roosevelt informed me of the instructions sent to General Eisenhower in connection with the surrender terms worked out for Italy during the discussions with General Castellano. I and my colleagues believe that the instructions given to General Eisenhower follow entirely from the thesis on Italy’s unconditional surrender and hence cannot give rise to any objections.

Still, I consider the information received so far insufficient for judging the steps that the Allies should take in the negotiations with Italy. This circumstance confirms the necessity of Soviet participation in reaching a decision in the course of the negotiations. I consider it timely, therefore, to set up the military- political commission representing the three countries, of which I wrote to you on August 22.

August 24, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 41

August 31, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill

 

I am for having the French National Committee of Liberation represented on the commission for negotiations with Italy. If you consider it advisable you may say so on behalf of our two Governments.

August 31, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 42

September 7, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill

 

I have received your message of September 4. The question which you ask me, namely, whether the Soviet Government would agree to General Eisenhower signing on its behalf the short armistice terms for Italy, should be considered as having been answered in the letter which V. M. Molotov, People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs, wrote to Mr Kerr, the British Ambassador, on September 2. The letter said that the powers which the Soviet Government entrusted to General Eisenhower also extended to his signing the short armistice terms.

September 7, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 43

September 8, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr F. D. Roosevelt

 

I received on September 6 your message dealing with a number of important subjects.

I still think that the most pressing problem is to set up a three-Power military-political commission, with headquarters in Sicily, or in Algiers to begin with. The despatch of a Soviet officer to Gen. Eisenhower’s headquarters can in no way replace the military-political commission, which is required to direct on the spot negotiations with Italy and with the Governments of other countries falling away from Germany. Much time has passed without things making the slightest headway.

As to French participation in the commission, I have already stated my opinion.41 However, if you have any doubts we can naturally discuss the matter after the three-Power commission is set up.

 

2. The time suggested by the Prime Minister for the meeting of our three representatives – early October – would be suitable; as to the place, I suggest Moscow. By that time the three Governments could agree on the range of subjects to be discussed, as well as on proposals relating to those problems, otherwise the conference will not yield the results which our Governments want.

 

3. As regards a personal meeting between us with Mr Churchill participating, I, too, desire this as early as possible. The date suggested by you is acceptable to me. It would be advisable to select a country where all the three countries are represented, such as Iran. I should add, however, that we shall yet have to specify the date of meeting with due regard to the situation on the Soviet-German front, where more than 500 divisions are engaged on both sides and where supervision by the Supreme Command of the U.S.S.R. is required almost daily.

 

4. Thank you for your congratulations on the successes of the Soviet armies. I take the occasion to congratulate you and the Anglo-American forces on their latest brilliant successes in Italy.

September 8, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 44

September 8, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your messages of September 5.

As I am writing simultaneously to the President, I think the most pressing problem is that of the military-political commission concerning which I wrote on August 22 and 24. After receiving your previous messages I expected the matter of setting up the tripartite military-political commission to be settled positively and without delay. But the solution of this very urgent problem has been delayed. The point is not, of course, this or that detail, which we could easily dispose of. The sending of a Soviet officer to General Eisenhower cannot in any way substitute the military-political commission which should already be at work, whereas it does not yet exist.

I have already informed you of my opinion on having a French representative. However, if the President is doubtful the question of French participation might be postponed.

 

2. The proposed date for the meeting of the representatives of the Governments – early October – suits me. I suggest that it be held in Moscow. The thing now is for us to agree beforehand on the range of problems and the proposals concerning those problems, in which our Governments are interested. I still think that this is essential for the success of the meeting, which should draft agreed decisions for subsequent adoption by the Governments. As for other matters relating to the convening of the conference I think there will be no difficulty in reaching agreement.

 

3. About a personal meeting of the heads of the three Governments – I have informed the President that I, too, am anxious for it to be held as early as possible, that the date suggested by him – November or December – suits me, but that it would be advisable to hold it in a country where all three are represented, such as Iran. I made the reservation that the actual date would have to be specified later, with due account to the situation on the Soviet-German front, where more than 500 divisions are engaged on both sides and where the supervision of the Supreme Command of the U.S.S.R. is required almost daily.

 

4. Thank you for your congratulations on the victories won by the Soviet armies. Please accept my congratulations on the splendid successes of the Anglo-American troops in Italy and my good wishes for further success in fulfilling the plans made for further operations.

September 8, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 45

September 8, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message of September 8, advising me of the directions which you and the President have given to General Eisenhower to warn the Germans of the retaliation they must expect should they venture on gas warfare against Italy.

For my part I think it was the right thing to do and have no objection to appropriate instructions having already been given by you and the President.

September 8, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 46

September 9, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your message of September 8 reached me on September 9. Apparently you had not received my message of September 8 when you wrote yours.

I hope you will have read it by now, for it answers the questions that interest you concerning the meeting of the three Foreign Ministers and the tripartite commission.

September 9, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 47

September 10, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Roosevelt, and the Prime Minister, Mr Churchill

 

I have received your message of September 10. I congratulate you on your latest success, particularly the landing in the Naples area. There can be no doubt that the landing in the Naples area and Italy’s break with Germany will be yet another blow to Hitler Germany and considerably facilitate the Soviet armies’ operations on the Soviet-German front.

So far the offensive of the Soviet troops is making good progress. I think we shall have further success in the next two or three weeks. It may be that we shall take Novorossiisk in a day or two.

September 10, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 48

September 12, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr F. D. Roosevelt, and the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Basically, the point about the military-political commission can be regarded as settled. We have appointed as the Soviet Ambassador A. Y. Vyshinsky, Deputy Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars and Deputy People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs, whom you know. A. Y. Bogomolov, the Soviet Ambassador to the Allied Governments in London, has been appointed his deputy. In addition, we are sending a group of responsible military and political experts and a small technical staff.

I think that the date September 25-30 should be fixed for the military-political commission getting down to work. I have nothing against the commission functioning in Algiers for a start and later deciding whether it should move to Sicily or elsewhere in Italy.

The Prime Minister’s considerations regarding the functions of the commission are correct in my view, but I think that later, taking into account the initial experience of the commission, we shall be able to specify its functions in respect of both Italy and other countries.

 

2. Concerning the meeting of our three representatives I suggest that we consider it agreed that Moscow be the place, and the date, October 4, as suggested by the President. As stated in previous messages, I still believe that for the conference to be a success it is essential to know in advance the proposals that the British and U.S. Governments intend to submit to it. I do not, however, suggest any restriction as far as the agenda is concerned.

 

3. As regards the meeting of the three heads of the Governments, I have no objection to Tehran, which, I think, is a more suitable place than Egypt where the Soviet Union is not yet represented.

September 12, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 49

September 22, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your message of September 21 received.

I agree with your proposal for a radio address to the people by the King of Italy. But I think it is absolutely essential that the King’s address should clearly say that Italy, which has surrendered to Great Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union, will fight against Germany together with Great Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union.

 

2. I also agree with your proposal for signing the comprehensive armistice terms. Concerning your reservation that some of the conditions cannot become effective at present, I take this to mean that they cannot be carried out in a territory still under German control. In any case I should like to get confirmation of this from you or the necessary explanation.

September 22, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 50

September 26, 1943

Personal Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Many thanks to you and Mr Eden for the congratulations on the capture of Smolensk.

September 26, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 51

September 28, 1943

Personal and Secret Message to President Roosevelt from Premier J. V. Stalin

 

Your message of September 27 reached me today.

I agree on the desirability of the Secretary of State, Mr Hull, being present at the forthcoming conference of the representatives of the three Governments.

At the same time I must call your attention to the great difficulties we should encounter if the agreed decision to hold the conference in Moscow were revised. If the conference were convened, not in Moscow, but in Britain, as you now suggest, V. M. Molotov, who I think should attend the three-Power conference as the representative of the Soviet Government, would be unable to get there in time. Molotov will not be able to leave the U.S.S.R. – at least in the immediate future – because A. Y. Vyshinsky, who is his first deputy in the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs, is expected, as you know, to leave for Algiers shortly.

Moreover, as you are aware, the U.S. and British press has been announcing for a long time that the forthcoming meeting will be held in Moscow, and a change of place might give rise to undesirable comments.

I have no objection to October 15 as the date of meeting. Presumably by that time the three Governments will have reached final agreement on the conference agenda.

September 28, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 52

October 2, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Roosevelt

 

I have no objection to you and the British Prime Minister having approved General Eisenhower’s suggestion that the long-term surrender document be kept secret after the Italian Government has signed it and not published for the time being.

October 2, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 53

October 2, 1943

Personal and Most Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your message of October 2 received.

The Soviet Government is prepared to participate in a tripartite declaration to be made public immediately after Italy has declared war on Germany. The text of the declaration proposed by you seems acceptable to me. For my part I suggest that the declaration be published simultaneously in London, Moscow and Washington.

Please be advised that I have not yet received the President’s telegram conveying General Eisenhower’s proposals, sent, as you write, on October 1.

October 2, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 54

October 3, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to Prime Minister W. Churchill

 

I have received your message of September 27 on the forthcoming meeting of the three heads of the Governments. I have no objection to the diversive preparations which you intend to carry out in Cairo. Concerning your proposal to throw a British and a Russian brigade round a suitable area in Cairo 3 several days in advance of our meeting in that city, I do not think the measure advisable – it could lead to undue commotion and exposure. I suggest that each take a strong police force with him. I think that would be adequate for security.

I have no objection to the other proposals for the coming meeting, and I agree to the code names suggested for correspondence on the meeting.

October 3, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 55

October 5, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I received your message of October 1 only today, October 5. I have no objection to the changes you suggest making in the “Instrument of Surrender of Italy.”

October 5, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 56

October 6, 1943

Personal and Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

Your message of October 4 received.

Regarding military matters, that is, Anglo-American measures to shorten the war, you already know the Soviet Government’s point of view from my previous message. It is still my hope that in this respect a preliminary three-Power conference will be useful and clear the ground for further important decisions.

If I have understood you aright, the Moscow conference will confine itself to discussing matters bearing on our three countries only, hence we can take it as agreed that a four-Power declaration is not to be on the agenda.

Our representatives should do their best to overcome the difficulties that may arise in their responsible work. As to decisions, they can, of course, only be taken by our Governments – I hope when you, Mr Churchill and myself meet in person.

I wish the U.S. and British armies successful fulfilment of their mission and entry into Rome, which will be another blow to Mussolini and Hitler.

October 6, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 57

October 13, 1943

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

I have received your message of October 1 informing me of your intention to send four convoys to the Soviet Union by the northern route in November, December, January and February. However, the information is depreciated by your further statement that the intention to send northern convoys to the U.S.S.R. is “not a contract or bargain,” but merely a declaration which, I take it, may be renounced by the British side at any moment regardless of the effect on the Soviet armies at the front. I must say I cannot agree to this approach to the matter. The British Government’s deliveries of munitions and other war cargoes to the U.S.S.R. cannot be treated other than as an obligation assumed by the British Government, in accordance with the terms of a special agreement between our two countries, in relation to the U.S.S.R., which for more than two years has borne the tremendous burden of the struggle against Hitler Germany, the common enemy of the Allies.

Nor can the fact be ignored that the northern route is the shortest, ensuring quickest delivery to the Soviet-German front of the munitions supplied by the Allies, and that unless that route is properly used the U.S.S.R. cannot get supplies on the required scale. As I have told you before, and as borne out by experience, shipment of munitions and other war materials to the U.S.S.R. through Persian ports simply cannot make up for the shortage, arising from non-shipment via the northern route, of munitions and materials which, it will be readily understood, are needed to fully meet the requirements of the Soviet armies. This year, however, the shipment of war cargoes by the northern route has, for some reason or other, decreased considerably compared with last year, thus making it impossible to fulfil the plan for military deliveries and running counter to the appropriate Anglo-Soviet protocol on war supplies. And so at the present time, when the Soviet Union is straining its forces to the limit in order to meet the needs of the front and ensure the success of the struggle against the main forces of our common enemy it would be impermissible to make supplies to the Soviet armies conditional on the arbitrary judgment of the British side. Such an approach cannot but be regarded as renunciation by the British Government of its obligations, as something in the nature of a threat to the U.S.S.R.

 

2. Concerning what you describe as controversial points in V. M. Molotov’s communication, I must say that I see no grounds whatever for this comment. In my view the principle of reciprocity and equality, advanced by the Soviet side for settling all visa matters affecting the personnel of the Military Missions, is sound and really just. I am not convinced by the point that the difference in the functions of the British and Soviet Military Missions precludes the application of the above principle and that the numerical strength of the British Military Mission should be determined solely by the British Government. This matter has already been dealt with in sufficient detail in the appropriate aide-mémoires of the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs.

 

3. I see no need for increasing the numbers of the British military personnel in the Soviet North, for the overwhelming majority of the British military personnel there now are not being used properly and have for months been doomed to idleness, something repeatedly pointed out by the Soviet side. As an example Base No. 126 at Archangel can be given, the abolition of which in view of its uselessness had been suggested more than once and to which abolition the British Government has only now agreed. I regret to say there are also instances of impermissible behaviour on the part of individual British servicemen, who in a number of cases resorted to corruption in their efforts to recruit certain Soviet citizens for intelligence purposes. Facts such as these, which offend Soviet citizens, naturally, give rise to incidents with undesirable complications.

 

4. With regard to the formalities and certain restrictions imposed in our northern ports, mentioned by you, it should be borne in mind that in a zone adjoining the front these formalities and restrictions are inevitable in view of the military situation in which the U.S.S.R. now finds itself. Besides, they apply in equal measure to British and other foreign citizens as well as to Soviet citizens. Nevertheless, in this respect too, the Soviet authorities have granted British servicemen and seamen a number of privileges, of which the British Embassy was informed in March. It follows that your reference to numerous formalities and restrictions is based on inaccurate information.

As regards censorship and penalties in relation to British Service personnel, I have no objection to the censorship of private mail for the British personnel in our northern ports being handled, on a reciprocal basis, by the British authorities, nor to British personnel who have committed minor offences that do not involve judicial investigation being dealt with by the appropriate military authorities.

October 13, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 58

October 14, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to the President, Mr Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

Your message of October 13 received. Thank you for the news. All success to the armed forces of the United States of America and Great Britain.

October 14, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 59

October 17, 1943

Personal and Secret Message from Premier J. V. Stalin to President F. D. Roosevelt

 

I have received your two messages of October 14.

Thank you for the news about the Secretary of State and his staff who are on their way. I hope they will soon arrive safely in Moscow.

As regards the subject raised in your second message, I shall send you a reply after I have conferred with my Government colleagues.

October 17, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 60

October 19, 1943

Personal and Secret Message to President Franklin D. Roosevelt from Premier J. V. Stalin

 

With regard to the place for the meeting of the three heads of the Governments I should like to inform you of the following.

I am afraid I cannot accept as suitable any one of the places suggested by you as against Tehran. It is not a matter of security, for that does not worry me.

In the course of the Soviet troops’ operations in the summer and autumn of this year it became evident that our forces would be able to continue their offensive operations against the German Army and that the summer campaign would thus continue into winter. My colleagues hold that the operations necessitate day-to-day guidance by the Supreme Command and my personal contact with the Command. In Tehran, unlike the other places, these requirements can be met by communicating directly with Moscow by telegraph or telephone. For this reason my colleagues insist on Tehran.

I agree that the press should be barred. I also accept your proposal for fixing November 20 or 25 as possible dates for the meeting.

Mr Hull has arrived safely in Moscow, and I hope his attendance at the Moscow three-Power conference will be very useful.

October 19, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 61

October 21, 1943

Secret and Personal from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Roosevelt

 

Your message of October 17 received. I have nothing against your suggestion for the powers to be accorded the French representatives on the Allied military-political commission.

October 21, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 62

November 5, 1943

Personal and Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

Mr Hull delivered your latest message to me on October 25, and I discussed it with him. I did not reply at once, being certain that Mr Hull had informed you of our talk and of my considerations as to the meeting with you and Mr Churchill.

I cannot but take into account the circumstances which you say prevent you from going to Tehran. It is for you alone, of course, to decide whether you can go there.

As far as I am concerned, there is no city more suitable than the one mentioned.

I have been entrusted with the Supreme Command of the Soviet forces, which obliges me to direct military operations day in and day out. This is particularly essential now, when the continuous four-month summer campaign is developing into a winter campaign and when military operations are getting under way practically along the entire 2,600-kilometre front. In this situation I, as Supreme Commander, cannot possibly go any farther than Tehran. My Government colleagues tend to the view that at present I cannot leave the U.S.S.R. at all in view of the exceedingly complicated situation at the front.

That accounts for the idea which has occurred to me and which I have already mentioned to Mr Hull. I could be fully replaced at that meeting by my First Deputy in the Government, V. M. Molotov, who during the discussions will enjoy, in keeping with our Constitution, the rights of head of the Soviet Government. In that case the difficulties of choosing a place would disappear. I hope this suggestion will at the moment be found suitable.

November 5, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 63

November 10, 1943

Secret and Personal from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I am in receipt of yours of November 8. Thank you for your reply.

I agree with your plan for our meeting in Iran and hope Mr Churchill will do likewise.

V. M. Molotov and our military representative will arrive in Cairo on November 22, and there work out with you everything about our meeting in Iran.

November 10, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 64

“November 12, 1943.”

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

I feel that I must inform you that today I sent a message to Mr Churchill which reads as follows:

“Today I received two messages from you.

“Although I had written to the President that V. M. Molotov would arrive in Cairo on November 22, I must say that, owing to reasons of a serious nature, Molotov will not, unfortunately, be able to go to Cairo. He will travel with me to Tehran towards the end of November. A number of military officers will also accompany me.

“It goes without saying that the Tehran meeting should involve only the three heads of the Governments as agreed. Participation of representatives of any other Powers should be absolutely ruled out.

“I wish you success in your conference with the Chinese on Far Eastern affairs.

“November 12, 1943.”

 

 

* * *

 

No. 65

November 12, 1943

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

It now turns out that reasons of a serious nature will prevent V. M. Molotov from reaching Cairo on November 22. He will accompany me to Iran towards the end of the month. I am simultaneously advising Mr Churchill of this, as you will be informed.

P.S. Despatch of this message was, unfortunately, held up through the fault of some members of the staff, but I hope it will arrive in time just the same.

November 12, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 66

November 17, 1943

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your reply reached me on November 15. Thank you for your congratulations on the offensive of the Soviet troops who are now having to withstand strong pressure west of Kiev, whither the Germans have rushed up fresh forces and armour.

November 17, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 67

November 25, 1943

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Your Cairo message received. I shall be at your service in Tehran in the evening of November 28.

November 25, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 68

November 25, 1943

Personal and Most Secret from Premier J. V. Stalin to President Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

Your Cairo message has reached me. I shall be at your service in Tehran on November 28 in the evening.

November 25, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 69

December 6, 1943

Personal and Secret to President Roosevelt from Premier Stalin

 

Thank you for your telegram.

I agree that the Tehran Conference was a great success and that our personal meetings were of great importance in many respects. I hope the common enemy of our peoples – Hitler Germany – will soon feel this. Now there is certainty that our peoples will cooperate harmoniously, both at present and after the war.

I wish you and your armed forces the best of success in the coming momentous operations.

I also hope that our meeting in Tehran will not be the last and that we shall meet again.

December 6, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 70

December 10, 1943

Secret and Personal to President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill from Premier Stalin

 

Thank you for your joint message informing me of additional decisions on waging the war against Germany in 1944.

Best regards.

December 10, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 71

December 10, 1943

Secret and Personal to President Roosevelt from Premier Stalin

 

I have received your message about the appointment of General Eisenhower. I welcome it. I wish him success in preparing and carrying out the forthcoming decisive operations.

December 10, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 72

December 20, 1943

Secret and Personal to President Roosevelt from Premier Stalin

 

Thank you for your letter, which reached me through your Ambassador on December 18.

I am glad that chance enabled me to render you a service in Tehran. I, too, attach great importance to our meeting and to the talks we had on the vital problem of accelerating our common victory and establishing lasting peace among the nations.

December 20, 1943

 

 

* * *

 

No. 73

Sent on December 22, 1943

Message from Marshal Stalin to Prime Minister W. Churchill

 

Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your friendly greetings on the occasion of my birthday. With all my heart I wish you speedy recovery and return to complete health, which is so essential for delivering the decisive blow to the enemy.

 

 

* * *

 

No. 74

December 27, 1943

Message from Marshal Stalin to the Prime Minister, Mr W. Churchill

 

Thank you for the message about the Scharnhorst.

To you, Admiral Fraser and the gallant men of the Duke of York, congratulations on a masterly blow and the sinking of the German battle cruiser Scharnhorst.

I am glad you have recovered from your illness.

I firmly shake your hand.

December 27, 1943

 

 

 

 

Stalin