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May 15, 1965

Cable from the Military Attache of the Chinese Embassy in the Soviet Union, 'Reactions to China's Second Nuclear Explosion'

This document was made possible with support from Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY)

 Cable received by the Foreign Ministry

Level: Urgent

Received from the Soviet Desk

Foreign Ministry Incoming (65) Chen (1354)


Reactions to China's Second Nuclear Explosion


To the Foreign Ministry and the Intelligence Department of the General Staff of the PLA:


Reactions to our second successful nuclear explosion:


1. Reactions of some Soviet military personnel: A tester [discharged lieutenant colonel] at the Aeronautical Engineering College told the Chinese students that: China’s explosion of its second atomic bomb showed the speed of its scientific development and its good use of time. But this costs a lot of money. A female worker guarding the school entrance said: Very good. It shows that China is progressing very quickly. A student felt that our atomic explosion was a good thing, but also said that we should give more help to Vietnam. Another tester did not make his stand known after listening to our student speak but asked: Why did you do your test in the air? Why did Vietnam not accept the Soviet Union’s help? But he then said: The missiles that the Soviet Union sent to Vietnam are all placed around Hanoi, thus the United States does not dare to bomb the area. A student of the college said: A lot of money is needed to manufacture atomic bombs. Now there are five countries in the world with atomic bombs. More atomic bombs mean a greater threat to world peace. Another student said: China and the Soviet Union signed a friendship treaty. Why do you still need to do the tests? In terms of industrial foundations, the Czechs had the ability to manufacture atomic bombs long ago. If you do this, the United States will bomb your atomic bases. While resting along the classroom corridors, the students at our Air Force Command College heard a political instructor holding the rank of a colonel tells his Hungarian students in class: The Soviet Union objects to China’s nuclear test. China disregards the opposition of the people of the world and continues its test. Why won’t China use the money for manufacturing atomic bombs to improve the lives of the poor people in China? There are few nuclear scientists in China and the few among them are all in the United States. As for China’s nuclear tests, the main and only party to offer help in terms of data was the Soviet Union. Now India is also asking for nuclear data from the Soviet Union. Does that not mean a greater crisis of a nuclear war occurring?


2. Reactions of students studying in the Soviet Union: The Cuban students in the Aeronautical [?] Engineering College all praised our atomic bomb explosion. The student leader among them said: This enhances the socialist countries’ power in opposing imperialism. A Polish student leader holding the rank of lieutenant colonel in the Military Engineering College said: This way, the power of socialism will grow once more. The German students of the college said: We object to China’s nuclear test. A Mongolian student holding the rank of Captain said: You are contravening the Partial Test Ban Treaty (of the three countries) by doing this. And said that a nuclear explosion in the air was harmful to human health.


Military Attache of the Chinese Embassy in the Soviet Union

25 May 1965

The Chinese Embassy in Moscow reports reactions from students and military personnel in the USSR to China's second nuclear test.

Document Information


PRC FMA 109-03637-03, 18-19. Translated by Caixia Lu.


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