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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 16, 1945

TASS DIGEST DISTRIBUTED TO CDE. I.V. STALIN AND CDE. C.M. MOLOTOV, 'THE ANTI-SOVIET FABRICATIONS OF A MEXICAN NEWSPAPER; ETC.'

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    Summary of news reports from Mexico, Sweden, Canada, and Great Britain, most on Stalin's alleged illness.
    "TASS Digest Distributed to Cde. I.V. Stalin and Cde. C.M. Molotov, 'The Anti-Soviet Fabrications of a Mexican Newspaper; Etc.'," October 16, 1945, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, RGASPI, f. 558, op. 11, d. 97, ll. 67-70. Contributed by Sergey Radchenko and translated by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/134696
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[stamp: Secret Department of TASS]

Top Secret

THE ANTi-SOVIET FABRICATIONS OF A MEXICAN NEWSPAPER

MEXICO [CITY], 4 October (TASS). On the 4th of October the newspaper Excelsior under the headline “If Stalin were Truman, he would finish off the Communists. The American Reds are guilty of a poor attitude toward Russia” published information in which it says, “If Stalin were the head of the government of the United States he would finish off all the Communists. This is the substance of the report made by retired Admiral of the American fleet William Standley, a life insurance agent, made at a Baltimore hotel. The former Ambassador in Moscow said that he once had to make clear to Marshal Stalin that the Communist agitators of the United States bear great responsibility for Americans’ poor attitude toward Russia. Admiral Standley then said that Stalin asked him, “Are these agitators citizens of the United States?[“] I answered him, yes. “Perhaps you have no police units in the United States?”, Marshal Stalin continued to ask me. I replied to him that there are. “And the police carry small arms?”, Stalin asked. I again answered him in the affirmative. “In such an event”, said Stalin, “why do you not kill your own revolutionaries? This is what I did”.

A SURVEY OF THE SWEDISH PRESS FOR 11 OCTOBER

STOCKHOLM, 11 October (TASS). The largest capital newspapers are publishing a report that Cde. Stalin has taken a vacation for the first time since the War. Some newspapers are consequently repeating reports of Parisian newspapers that Cde. Stalin is supposedly seriously ill.

SWEDISH NEWSPAPERS ABOUT THE “ILLNESS” OF COMRADE STALIN

STOCKHOLM, 12 October (TASS). Rumors are starting to appear in the Swedish press in connection with a report about the vacation of Cde. Stalin that he is allegedly seriously ill and suffering from a liver disease, etc. Today some newspapers are passing on a report of United Press from Ankara that rumors are circulating there that Cde. Stalin has supposedly died.

CANADIAN NEWSPAPER ABOUT “A STATEMENT OF STALIN TO PEPPER”

OTTAWA, 9 October (TASS). On 9 October the Toronto newspaper Globe and Mail carried an editorial commenting on I. V. Stalin’s statement to Senator Pepper about the need to judge the Soviet Union objectively. The newspaper called this statement “a formality”. If Russia, declares the newspaper, followed the methods of genuinely democratic countries, then it would permit free entry to foreign visitors and journalists, who could draw their own ideas about the socioeconomic progress and public opinion of Russians, interview representatives of all classes, and transmit reports about their impressions without the interference of censorship. The newspaper states that such free observation is impossible in Russia. The same impenetrable wall separates Poland and the Balkan countries from the Free World. In conclusion the article states that without free relations between the Soviet Union and other countries the objective opinion of which I. V. Stalin spoke is inconceivable.

Three copies printed

1st copy – to Cde. I. V. Stalin

2nd copy – to Cde. V. M. Molotov

3rd copy – to file

Outgoing Nº 481ss [handwritten: pr]

16 October 1945

M. Nº 418

zp

Top Secret

DAILY EXPRESS CORRESPONDENT ABOUT THE LEADERS OF THE SOVIET STATE

LONDON, 15 October. As the Reuters agency transmits, Alaric Jacob, correspondent of the Daily Express, who has just returned to Britain, has published in the Daily Express a series of articles on the topic of the postwar development of Russia. Jacob asks the question: who will be Stalin’s successor? As he asserts, some think that if it were known who rules Russia while Stalin is on vacation in his native Georgia then that might be the key to the riddle of who will be his successor. Jacob thinks that this successor will be a little-known person with a goatee, red hair, and freckles named Bulganin, who probably has probably taken on himself part of the day-to-day work of Stalin. “When Stalin finally retires”, continues Jacob, “then it seems to me unavoidable that Russia will be ruled by a committee. The number five would be practical from the point of view of its composition, which became clear when Stalin, Beria, Mikoyan, Kaganovich, and Voroshilov composed the Defense Council, which led the war efforts. From such a committee of five might come a new leader, but this is a slow process. After Lenin’s death there was an interregnum and much time is needed in order to “puff up the reputation” of any person, however talented he is, to take the place of a leader who is considered the father of the republic and organizer of victory to a greater degree than Lenin.

One can only construct conjectures; however, there are five men who will probably be able to act as competitors: Molotov, Bulganin, Antonov, Mikoyan, and Zhdanov. We can be sure of one thing: a young and passionate genius will not fill the vacancy which opens up. I think that after such great tension the Soviet Union has become the most stable society in the world, clinging to the tested and authentic even as they call this “Marxism-Leninism”. Such a society does not open any horizons for a new Alexander of Macedonia. A new world will definitely not be conquered.

Stalin has not stopped being a revolutionary, but he and his successors are followers of the power of example, and not a barricade for which both ardent and hot blood is needed. The successors of Stalin will be a group of people of middle age and good will”.

THE INSINUATION OF TURKISH SCOUNDRELS IN A SWISS NEWSPAPER

PARIS, 14 October (TASS). The newspaper Resistance is publishing a telegram from Berne today: “Reproducing a telegram from Ankara, ‘Basler Nachrichten’ writes: ‘According to rumors circulating in diplomatic circles of Ankara allegedly a telegram has arrived announcing the death of Stalin. This report has not been confirmed by anyone’”.

Three copies printed

1st copy – to Cde. I. V. Stalin

2nd copy – to Cde. V. M. Molotov

3rd copy – to file

Outgoing Nº 484ss

16 October 1945 [handwritten: pr]

M. Nº 419

   zp