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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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Soviet Foreign Policy

Documents on the international relations and foreign policy of the Soviet Union. See also United States-Soviet Relations and the Warsaw Pact. (Image, Nixon and Khrushchev in Moscow, 1959, NARA RG306-RMN-1-21)

  • July, 1964

    Conversations Between Delegations of the Romanian Workers Party and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in Moscow, July 1964 (excerpts)

    Delegates from Romania discuss the strained Soviet-Romanian relationship with Soviet officials. Issues raised include the organizational structure of the Warsaw Pact’s military forces, the Council of Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA or Comecon), and the existence of Soviet spies and espionage networks in Romania, the Soviet insistence that all Communist countries should support their proposals in international bodies and vote as a block, and other unilateral Soviet decisions such as placing missiles in Cuba in 1962.

  • July 17, 1964

    Notes from Meeting of Romanian Delegation with Nikita Khrushchev in Moscow, 17 July 1964 (excerpts)

    Khrushchev, Kosygin, and Romanian representative Bodnăraş discuss the history of Soviet-Romanian relationships, Soviet espionage in Romania, and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

  • April, 1966

    Consultation between the Czechoslovak Foreign Ministry and the Soviet Foreign Ministry [in Moscow]

    A report on a routine meeting between Czechoslovak and Soviet Foreign Ministry officials. The topic of discussions was Soviet foreign policy toward Africa and Asia and the Soviets tried to convince the Czechoslovak that relations with these regions were developing well despite several right wing military coups which had taken place in the previous two years. Africa came to the fore, during the discussions, as an area in which the Soviets were investing a lot of time and money.

  • May 27, 1966

    Excerpts from Leonid Brezhnev's May 1966 Speech on Talks with Kim Il Sung

    Excerpts from Leonid Brezhnev's speech at the CC CPSU Plenum on the morning of May 27, 1966, in which he discusses his visit to North Korea and meetings with Kim Il-Sung, as well as Soviet and North Korea relations with North Vietnam, China, and Japan.

  • 1967

    List of Questions Discussed and Adopted by the Soviet Politburo in the First Five Months of 1967

    List of questions decided on by the Soviet Politburo pertaining to the People's Republic of Mongolia.

  • February 02, 1967

    Report by Kneset Members Mikonis and Sneh on their talks with Suslov and Pomemarev

    Mikonis and Sneh [Israeli Communist Kneset (Parliament) Members] were apparently instructed by the Prime Minister’s office to submit a list of 13 questions to the heads of the international department of the Soviet Communist Party. Suslov and Ponemarev responded in a meeting which took place in Moscow saying that the Soviet Union had always acknowledged Israel’s right to exist and had been making strenuous efforts to dissuade its Arab allies from starting a war against it. The two Soviet officials also implicitly endorsed the view that current Israeli Prime Minister, Levy Eshkol, was taking a more moderate and conciliatory line in his relations with Moscow.

  • February 16, 1967

    The Visit of the [Syrian] Ba’ath in the USSR, Political Report No. 3

    The document records the state of play in Syrian-Soviet relations prior to the Six-Day War. According to the author of the report negotiations between the Syrian Ba’ath delegation and Soviet authorities, which took place in Moscow during January 1967, were tense and uneasy because the Soviets were displeased by the provocative and aggressive Syrian policy toward Israel.

  • May 26, 1967

    Protocol of the meetings between Egyptian Minister of War, Shams Badran, and Soviet Premier, Alexei Kosygin, on the 25 and 26 of May 1967

    Badran and Kosygin met in Moscow on the eve of the Six-Day War. Badran submitted a long list of weapons which Cairo wanted to be airlifted immediately. After a late night discussion in the Politburo, Kosygin informed Badran that Moscow would be willing to airlift only some of the items on the Egyptian list; others would be supplied in a later date. During the first meeting with Badran, Kosygin advised the Egyptian government to think of ways to end the crisis with Israel, perhaps by granting Israeli ships free transit in the Straights of Tiran.

  • June 02, 1967

    Report, Embassy of Hungary in the Soviet Union to the Hungarian Foreign Ministry

    Discussion with the Soviet Foreign Ministry on the direction of India’s foreign policy. Topics covered include Indian opposition to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty; India’s position on the escalating tensions between Egypt and Israel; the possible establishment of a new Asian regional economic bloc; and the recent decision by the United States to eliminate military aid to both India and Pakistan. Soviet policy towards India and Pakistan is also discussed, including the possibility of providing military supplies to Pakistan.

  • June 20, 1967

    On Soviet Policy following the Israeli Aggression in the Middle East

    East German Document describing the speech by Soviet Leader Leonid Brezhnev to the Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CC CPSU) on the actions undertaken by the Soviet leadership before and during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. Brezhnev tells the CC CPSU plenum that the Arab struggle in the Middle East has both a class struggle and a national liberation dimension. Brezhnev blames Israeli aggression for the start of the war and Arab blunders and low morale for the humiliating defeat of the UAR forces. Given the success of the Israeli Defense Forces, the Soviets were forced to consider diplomatic and political methods for saving the Arab leadership. When Israeli forces did not stop their aggression against Syria, threatening to overrun the Syrian capital of Damascus, Brezhnev claims tells the CC CPSU that Soviet leadership warned the Americans that the Soviet Army would have to intervene and, at the same time, threatened the Israeli that any further actions would result in Soviet involvement in the war. Brezhnev claims that, since the war ended just hours after the Soviets had made their threats, the imperialist powers acquiesced to Soviet demands. This German translation of Brezhnev's speech was circulated to the SED leadership.

  • February 13, 1968

    CPSU CC Protocol #44/54, 13 February 1968

    The memo concerns Soviet financial matters and Budapest.

  • May 06, 1968

    The KGB’s 1967 Annual Report

    Yearly report by KGB Chief Andropov to the CPSU leadership on the actions taken by the KGB in the field of espionage, counter-espionage, and counter-propaganda.

  • November 05, 1968

    Report Relayed by Andropov to the CPSU Central Committee, 'Students and the Events in Czechoslovakia'

    KGB Chairman Yuri Andropov presents a secret, 33-page report to the CPSU Central Committee about the mood of Soviet college students. The report had been completed sometime before the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, and had been circulating within the KGB. It is not clear precisely who drafted the report, but Andropov’s cover memorandum and the report itself indicate that the author was a college student in Odessa who had recently finished his degree.

  • July 14, 1970

    Cryptogram No 7067 from Polish Embassy in Moscow, Wording of Soviet-Romanian Agreement

    The Polish Embassy in Moscow reports about changes to the wording of a Soviet-Romanian agreement, which "lacks wording referring to the obligations of the parties to take steps to defend the gains of the socialist economic integration, expansion of direct cooperation between the state and social organizations / and of course the problem of Munich."

  • January 11, 1971

    Report, Polish Embassy in Bucharest, 'Romania After the Agreements on Friendship with the Soviet Union, Poland and Bulgaria'

    The Polish Embassy in Romania reports on trends in Romanian foreign relations. There are signs of rapprochement with the other socialist countries in the Warsaw Pact after Romania reversed course to join Comecon. Yet Ceaușescu continued to court China and the United States as well.

  • January 25, 1971

    KGB Memo of Council Minister of the USSR, Y. Andropov, 25 January 1971

    Includes memo of 20 January 1971.

  • August 30, 1971

    Meeting between Soviet academic and envoy to Israel, Yevgeni Primakov and Israeli Prime Minister, Golda Meir, 30 August 1971

    Primakov came to hear a concrete offer from Golda on how to push the peace process forward. The Prime Minister was unwilling to go into specifics. Primakov informed Golda that as far as the Soviet Union was concerned there was a linkage between Israeli concessions and immigration of Jews from the Soviet Union. According to Primakov, as long as the Arab-Israeli conflict remained unsettled, the Soviet Union could not be seen as acting against the interests of its Arab allies by allowing unrestricted Jewish immigration from the Soviet Union to Israel.

  • November 06, 1971

    Polish Embassy in Bucharest, 'Memorandum Regarding Romania's Relations with the European Socialist Countries After Ceaușescu's Visit to Beijing'

    The Polish Ambassador reports that Ceausescu's visit to China had chilled relations with the countries of the Warsaw Pact. The report then discusses Romanians relations with the Soviet Union and Hungary in more depth.

  • 1972

    Minutes of the Joint Meeting of the Bulgarian Central Committee, the State Council, and the Council of Ministers, on the Situation in the Middle East

    Todor Zhivkov reports on his recent visit to the Syrian Arab Republic and the Arab Republic of Egypt.

  • June 15, 1973

    Excerpts from a record of a meeting between Soviet journalist, Victor Louis, and General Director of the Prime Minister’s Office, Mordechai Gazit

    Record of a meeting between Mordechai Gazit (MG), General Director of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office, and Victor Louis (VL), a Soviet journalist. The meeting was held the week before a summit meeting between Richard Nixon and Leonid Brezhnev. The two discussed the immigration of Jews from the Soviet Union and the low state of Israeli-Soviet relations.