November 3, 1982
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Moldavian SSR, No. 24 s, to MCP Central Committee, 'About the Creation of the Council for the Coordination of Foreign Policy Propaganda'
This document was made possible with support from Leon Levy Foundation
The Creation of the Council for the Coordination of Foreign Policy Propaganda
In recent years, the social-political, economic, techno-scientific, cultural, touristic, and other relations of the Moldavian SSR with foreign countries have expanded significantly, which has brought a growth in the number of visits of foreign delegations and citizens into the republic, as well as an increase in the number of travelers from our citizens to foreign countries. In 1981, approximately 65 thousand foreign citizens visited Moldavia along the line of the Foreign Ministry, of other ministries, departments and organizations in the republic as part of different delegations, as tourists and on personal travel. Over 50 official delegations were received in the republic, [and] 11 international symposiums, conferences and meetings were organized.
The number of foreign citizens who visited the republic in 1989 was no less and it continues to grow. It is sufficient to mention that in the first 9 months of the current year over 42 thousand foreign citizens [and] approximately 50 official foreign delegations have come into Moldavia, [and] 12 international symposiums, congresses, meetings and other actions with the participation of representatives from over 40 foreign countries were organized.
The volume of relations with foreign countries along ministerial and departmental lines continues to grow. Only along the line of the MSSR Ministry of Agriculture in 1981 were received 121 delegations of savants and specialists, numbering in total 570 persons from 34 foreign countries, and in the first nine months of the current year—43 delegations numbering 209 persons from 20 foreign states. A large number of foreign savants and specialists arrive, likewise along the line of MSSR AS [Academy of Sciences], the Council of Kolkhozes of the MSSR, the Ministry of Forestry and Vineyards, AAI [the Agro-Industrial Association], “MOLDVINPROM,” “MOLDTABAKPROM,” etc. All of this data gives proof of the fact that the republic has great potential for developing well-oriented and effective propagandistic-informational activities abroad. However, as has been shown in practice, these activities have not yet been given the attention they deserve.
In the majority of cases, the programs of visits in Moldavia by foreign delegations and foreign specialists foresee only business meetings with Soviet colleagues, their familiarization with scientific and technical-scientific achievements and with production technologies. For all practical purposes these meetings are not used in order to obtain necessary intelligence for our country from foreign interlocutors regarding the latest accomplishments in the domain of science and technology abroad.
These programs still contain few measures that contribute to the familiarization of guests with Soviet reality, to the diffusion of propagandistic-informational materials regarding the achievements of the Moldavian SSR in economic and socio-cultural construction. The shortcomings mentioned above reduce the political character and efficiency of work developed with foreign citizens [and] the opportunity of personally winning over a certain part of our guests as spokesmen of objective information about the Soviet Union is lost.
In addition, the organization of the reception of foreign guests along the lines of the ministries and departments, because of the lack of experience of the latter, have permitted cases of transgressing instructions regarding the model of reception and the work with foreign delegations, as well as transgressions of Soviet diplomatic protocol and of civil etiquette.
It must be especially noted that, under the conditions of the sharpening of the ideological struggle in the international arena, when the USA administration has announced the organization of a new “crusade” against communism and has placed itself in the lead of the psychological war against the countries of the socialist community, the questions of the continual intensification and perfecting of the entire foreign policy propaganda attain an extraordinary importance. At the same time, it must be kept in mind that, recently, the possibilities of our representatives for propaganda there regarding the mode of Soviet life, the familiarization of broad public opinion with the accomplishments of the USSR peoples in the construction of communist societies, [and] with the foreign peace policy of the CPSU and the Soviet state have been reduced.
The task of permanently counteracting the subversive activity of all sorts of falsifiers of the history of the Moldavian people, statehood, language and culture continues to remain current, as do the attempts of Romanian propaganda of exercising a certain negative influence over Moldavian society within the political course of the SRR leadership, which is oriented towards negating the existence of the independent Moldavian nation.
In the same order of ideas, the problems connected with the use of all possibilities for developing an efficient propagandistic-informational activity abroad regarding the accomplishments of the Moldavian SSR in all domains of socialist construction, including through the intensive use and orientation towards this aim of visits to our republic by foreign delegations, savants, specialists and other foreign citizens, becomes especially current.
Nevertheless, as we know, because of the lack of orientation experience and respective assistance, each ministry and department of the republic, which has ties with foreign relations, are partially unable to broadly and efficiently develop propagandistic-informational work and efficient counterpropaganda among the ranks of foreign delegations and foreign citizens. This important political work necessitates a complex approach, constant attention and constant improvement. All of the ministries and departments should henceforth exert united and combined efforts in this sense.
Starting off from what has been explicated above, we consider that creation of a center for the coordination of foreign policy propaganda among the ranks of the foreigners who visit our republic, as well as through [our] citizens who travel abroad, has become an imminent necessity. In our opinion, such a center could become the Council for the Coordination of Foreign Policy Propaganda at the Moldavian Communist Party CC or the Moldavian SSR Foreign Ministry.
Moldavian SSR Foreign Minister, P. V. Comendant (signature)
Report on the increasing volume of foreign visitors to Moldavia, and plans to organize a new Council for the Coordination of Foreign Policy. This council would have the “task of permanently counteracting the subversive activity of all sorts of falsifiers of the history of the Moldavian people, statehood, language and culture,” with Romanian policies singled out as continually “exercising a negative influence over Moldavian society”
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