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June, 1960


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    Deng Xiaoping discuss Khrushchev's speech regarding the American U-2 spy plane shot down by the Soviet Union in May 1960 and the Eisenhower administration's attempted cover up. He also discussed Zhou Enlai's visit to India and continued tensions between India and China.
    "From the Diary of S. V. Chervonenko, Memorandum of Conversation with the General Secretary of the CC CCP, Deng Xiaoping, 17 May 1960," June, 1960, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVPRF (Foreign Policy Archives of the Russian Federation) f. 0100 op.53, p.8, d. 454, ll. 165-9. Translated by Ben Aldrich-Moodie.
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From the Diary of

"1" June 1960 TOP SECRET
Copy No. 3

Memorandum of Conversation

With the General Secretary of the CC CCP
Member of the Politburo of the

I was received on 17 May by Deng Xiaoping. The chief of the division on ties with fraternal parties, member of the CC and the Secretariat of the CC CCP, Wang Jiaxiang also took part in the ensuing conversation....

In connection with the instructions from the Center, I gave Deng Xiaoping the text of a letter of the CC CPSU with an official invitation to the party-governmental delegation of the PRC to visit the USSR. Deng Xiaoping said that the delegation of the PRC would be certain to go to the Soviet Union, and that the CC CCP without a doubt would take seriously the wishes expressed by the Soviet comrades in connection with this trip.

After this I fulfilled the Center's instruction regarding informing the Chinese comrades about the position of the Soviet Union in connection with the summit conference. Deng Xiaoping said that comrade N.S. Khrushchev's speech on 16 May in Paris was a very good, strong speech, and noted that on 18 May it would be fully published in the PRC press. We still do not know Mao Zedong's and Liu Shaoqi's opinions, since they are absent, said Deng Xiaoping, but an exchange of opinions has already taken place between the members of the CC CCP who are presently in Beijing. All of these comrades fully support N.S. Khrushchev's address. Deng Xiaoping again emphasized that it was a very strong address, and that in it they see the CC CPSU's firm position. That is our position and the position of the Central Committee of the CCP, he said.

Touching on the USA's aggressive actions, Deng Xiaoping said: "Eisenhower did a good turn (sdelal khoroshee delo)," since by his actions he fully unmasked himself in the eyes of all the world's peoples. This has a deep educational significance. The ruling circles of the USA are trying to justify themselves by any means possible, but the facts speak for themselves. The peoples of the world can compare the actions of the United States and the Soviet Union. Deng Xiaoping emphasized that N.S. Khrushchev's speech in Paris and Eisenhower's statement, with which he had also already familiarized himself, present a striking contrast. Com. Khrushchev fully uncovered the true face of Eisenhower and the imperialists.

In the course of further conversation, Deng Xiaoping said that the Soviet government's initiative as to the summit conference was useful and necessary; he emphasize that "this was and remains our point of view." It would be good, if as a result of pressure by peace-loving forces, results were attained, great or small. While at present, fruitful work by a summit conference is impossible, the very fact that the imperialists unmasked themselves is not a bad result. Deng Xiaoping further said that the logic of the American imperialists is the logic of robbers; however Eisenhower tries to "white wash" (obelit') himself, nothing more will come of it for him; practically he is helping us. Even this result of the meeting in Paris speaks to the fact that the victory is ours. Deng Xiaoping emphasized that comrade N.S. Khrushchev "acted completely correctly by going to Paris; he should have gone."

Throughout the course of the conversation I noted that some diplomats - representatives of the capitalist countries of Western Europe in Beijing, in particular the English and the Dutch, are trying to defend the United States, and constantly emphasize that no great significance should be lent to the incursion by the American [U-2] airplane onto the Soviet Union's territory; that all countries behave in this way, but that the USA got caught. Deng Xiaoping said that Nehru, U Nu, and almost all the political actors of the bourgeois world make the same argument. Deng Xiaoping told about some of Zhou Enlai's impressions in connection with his trip to the countries of Asia which had just finished. Zhou Enlai returned to Beijing today and told about the negotiations with Nehru, about which he, Zhou Enlai, had formed a particular opinion. Deng Xiaoping said that Zhou Enlai's trip to India to a certain extent played the same role as N.S. Khrushchev's trip to Paris for the summit conference. N.S. Khrushchev exposed the American imperialists, and as a result of Zhou Enlai and other Chinese comrades' trip to India, Nehru's true face was uncovered. Deng Xiaoping said: "Both of the trips were necessary, correct, and yielded a [positive] result."

Deng Xiaoping emphasized that Zhou Enlai's visit to India fully confirmed "our previous opinion and position in relation to Nehru." First. Nehru is the central figure in the anti-Chinese campaign in India. Nehru is not in a position where rightist and other reactionaries are putting pressure on him; he himself seeks the attainment of his goals by all means possible. Nehru has never lost control over the situation in the country, nor has the situation ever gotten out of hand. Nehru knows how to hold the country firmly in his hands. Second. The trip confirmed that Nehru does not want to solve the issue of the Chinese-Indian border under any circumstances, even for some sort of limited period. In this, he is operating on the basis of his interests, both internal and external. Nehru speaks out against the communist party of India; for this reason, it does not profit him to resolve the border issue with China. Also for foreign-policy reasons it is not profitable for him to resolve the issue. Deng Xiaoping said that if Nehru had eliminated the conflict with China, he would not have received the latest American aid, a sum of 1.2 billion dollars.

Deng Xiaoping noted that at present in the Chinese press, articles are being published which are uncovering Nehru's real face. He further said that many political figures in the countries of Asia-Nasser [Egypt], Kasem [Iraq], Sukarno [Indonesia], U Nu [Burma]-are taking the same positions as Nehru. Nehru stands out from them [in that] he is the cleverest. It was not in vain that he studied in England; in India he is called a half-Englishman, and the English are more experienced than the Americans in [playing] political tricks.

Deng Xiaoping emphasized that the struggle with bourgeois figures of this sort is one of the most important problems facing the international communist movement. Such figures as Nasser or Kasem unmask themselves; in India this work must be done under more difficult circumstances. Some Indian communists even praise Nehru. But in the end, said Deng Xiaoping, Nehru's behavior is educating these communists as well. With pleasure we see, he continued, that at the last meeting of the National Committee of the Indian Communist Party, important resolutions on internal issues were adopted, namely a statute about the fact that the struggle with reaction cannot avoid a fight with the National Congress Party and with the Congress government (materials about the resolutions of the National Committee of the Communist Party of India were published on the May 17 in "The People's Daily" -S.Ch.). The organ of the Indian Communist Party has begun to include open public statements against Nehru.

Returning to the meeting in Paris, Deng Xiaoping said that the issue of developing a [Chinese] movement in support of N.S. Khrushchev's statement was being examined in the CC CCP. On May 18, the leaders of social organizations in the PRC will make statements in the press on this issue, and two to three days thereafter, when the circumstances become clearer, further steps will be taken in this direction. Our common position consists, he said, of exposing the imperialists and of explaining the correctness of the position of the countries in the socialist camp headed by the Soviet Union.

Deng Xiaoping asked me to convey a warm greeting to comrade N.S. Khrushchev and to all of the members of the Presidium of the CC CPSU on behalf of comrades Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, and all of the leaders of the CC CCP. The Americans are closing ranks against us, he said, but their closing of ranks is insecure. Our solidarity, and the solidarity of the countries of the socialist camp, is inviolable, since it is founded on a unity of ideas and goals.

In connection with this, the great significance of the upcoming visit by the Chinese party-governmental delegation to the Soviet Union for the further development and strengthening of fraternal friendship between our peoples and parties and for the unity of the whole socialist camp was once again emphasized by me.

In conclusion, Deng Xiaoping said that he would convey everything that he had been informed of by me to comrades Mao Zedong and Liu Shaoqi.

The conversation took place in warm, friendly circumstances.

The counselor to the Embassy, I.I. Safronov, and the First Secretary of the Embassy, B.V. Kapralov, were present during the conversation.

Ambassador of the USSR to the PRC