My Three Years in Moscow

My Three Years in Moscow

My Three Years in Moscow

My Three Years in Moscow

Excerpt

I see that some of my predecessors have thought proper to indicate the qualifications and accomplishments which in their judgment would be most useful in an American Minister at this court; and if I attempt to do so, it is from no spirit of officiousness, but merely to give the benefits of my experience and observation, for whatever they may be worth .

. . . I am of opinion that a Minister from the U. States, particularly at this time, ought to be a military man. I mean a man that has seen actual service, and who would be able to maintain his pretensions. This is not suggested for the mere vain show of wearing a uniform, but because the Government of Russia is a military government. . . . There is no question but that a Minister of respectable military attainments and reputation would have much more might than a civilian. The ordinary reasons for such an appointment are, in my judgment, enhanced by the present position and prospects of Russia. Its influence over the rest of Europe is irresistible, particularly with the German states. Its vast military power and military spirit are the secrets of this ascendancy, aided by a system of diplomacy which has perhaps no equal. In short I mean that Russia is such a power that it is important to conciliate by all honorable means, and of these the proper accomplishments of a Minister would certainly be the cheapest to our Government .

--Excerpt from a dispatch of the American Minister to Russia, Neill S. Brown, dated St. Petersburg, January 27, 1853

AFTER the end of the war in Europe and eight months of occupation duty in the American zone of Germany, I had returned in January 1946, to the War Department, where I was in the process of taking over the Operations and Planning Division of the General Staff. After the campaigns of North Africa, Sicily, Italy, France and Germany, this was the type of duty to which I had been looking forward. It reunited me with my wife, and we set up housekeeping again in Washington. It gave me the opportunity, after more than four years of almost constant absence, to get reacquainted with my own country.

But I had hardly begun the job in earnest, when the telephone on my desk rang one day and my secretary reported that the caller was Secretary of State James F. Byrnes. The Secretary asked me to come to his office in the Old State-War-Navy Build-

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