Francis to Lansing on Soviet gov probably unopposed to intervention, but fear German military response

File No. 861.00/1877

Moscow, May 21, 1918, 5 p.m.
[Received May 27, 3:35 p.m.]


    Your 130, May 18, 4 p.m., received 20th. Instructions noted. Not planning remove at present but awaiting developments especially concerning Murman ultimatum. Also expecting some indication of our policy concerning Allied intervention, see my No. 140, May 2, 6 p.m. Have heard incidentally that President agreed intervention advisable but preferred awaiting expression from the Russian people requesting same and furthermore was a little undecided what form intervention should take. While information from all sources demonstrates dissatisfaction with Soviet and indicates that Allied intervention would be welcomed by Russian people and probably unopposed by Soviet government any formal declaration to that effect is unlikely or impossible. Such expression from the bourgeoisie or any dissatisfied element would be promptly and severely dealt with by the Soviet government as counter-revolutionary movement; if the Soviet government should signify consent to Allied intervention Germans would immediately take Moscow. Consequently situation is complicated but delay is dangerous as likely to force conservative intelligent classes into German alliance; majority of such while instinctively pro-Ally are becoming exceedingly restless under Bolshevik domination characterized as it is by outrageous treatment.

    In my judgement the natural and most justifiable form Allied intervention can assume at the present moment is resistance to evacuation Murman consequently I have repeatedly urged cooperation there with the British and French and again so recommend.


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