Dear Mr. President:
In view of the telegrams received yesterday revealing that a state of terrorism exists in Moscow and Petrograd through which thousands of innocent Russian citizens are being killed, it occurs to me that it might be desirable for this Government to do what it can to prevent a continuance of this terrible state of affairs. I am anxious to avoid any semblance of political interference but rather to base our action purely on the ground of humanity and as acting in behalf of the Russian people themselves who are the victims of these crimes.
There are two courses which seem practicable:
- A circular telegram to the neutral countries of the world, as suggested in the accompanying draft,
- A statement to be issued by you to the American people, a copy of which could be communicated to the various neutral governments as an expression of the views of the American people.
I might add that in the case of the Armenian massacres, this Government sent an expression of its aversion through Ambassador Morgenthau. Then, however, we had a Government with which to deal but in the case of Russia we are unable to act in so direct a manner. The Armenian massacres, however, might nevertheless be considered as a precedent to follow at the present time.
I would be grateful if you would kindly indicate your views.