Official Statements of War Aims and Peace Proposals, December 1916 to November 1918

By James Brown Scott | Go to book overview

STATEMENT OF AMBASSADOR FRANCIS ON THE ATTITUDE OF THE UNITED STATES TOWARD RUSSIA AND THE TREATY OF BREST-LITOVSK1
March 19, 1918

The friendship between Russia and the United States, which has existed for a century or more, should be augmented rather than impaired by Russia becoming a republic, and Americans are sincerely desirous that Russians be permitted to continue free and independent and not become subjects of Germany.

I have not seen an authentic copy of the peace treaty, but I am sufficiently acquainted with its provisions to know that if the Russian people should submit to it Russia not only would be robbed of vast areas of her territory, but her people eventually would become subjects of Germany. Russia eventually would become virtually a German province, and her people would lose the liberties for which their ancestors struggled for generations.

My Government still considers America an ally of the Russian people, who surely will not reject the proffered assistance we shall be prompt to render to any Government in Russia that will offer a sincere and organized resistance to the German invasion.

If the Russian people will be brave and patriotic, will lay aside temporarily their political differences and be resolute, firm, and united, they will be able to drive the enemy from the borders, and procure, therefore, at the end of 1918 an enduring peace for themselves and the world.


FOREIGN MINISTER CZERNIN'S DISCUSSION OF PEACE TERMS, REPLY TO PRESIDENT WILSON AND REVELATION OF FRENCH PEACE MANEUVERS2
April 2, 1918

With the conclusion of peace with Roumania the war in the East is ended. Peace has been concluded with three parties--namely,

____________________
1
Text in The New York Times, March 22, 1918, p. 3.
2
Text in The Times, London, April 4, 1918, p. 7.

-298-

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