Boris Lvin (bbb) wrote,
Boris Lvin

Полпредство и нацисты - попытки контактов

In March and early May 1932 the chief of the Russian Section of the Truppenamt, Captain Iodl, approached Alexandrovski with the idea of establishing contacts between the Nazis and the Soviet Embassy (AVP RF: 082, inv. 15, folder 68, f. 7, pp. 146-144, 181-179). On May 24 Moscow (Stern wrote about Krestinski's approval) decided to accept Iodl's offer because "we can not ignore the National Socialists, who are the greatest factor in the German politics". The talks, "of course", had to be confined to foreign policy matters (Ibid, folder 67, f. 3, 184-183). The same possibility was raised in Berlin by Twardowski in June and July (ibid, 216; ibid, folder 68, f. 7, pp. 407, 419, 455) and Mayor Nidermayer, who claimed to have Göring's authorization for talks with the Russians (Ibid, pp. 475, 491). Oscar Ritter von Nidermayer, whom G. Post describes as "the German Lawrence" of the First World War (Op. cit., 134), in the late 20s was the chief of the Zentrale Moskau. In September 1932, Reventlov told Vinogradov that Hitler had decided to leave all contacts with the Soviets in his (Reventlov's) hands. This information was confirmed by the editor of the Angriff Lippert (Ibid, pp. 545-544). Nevertheless, Nidermayer continued to offer his services as an intermediary between the embassy and Hitler (ibid, f. 8, pp. 358-356). According to the records available, the gist of the conversations between Alexandrovski, Vinogradov, and the Nazi representatives was the avoidance of the party campaigns against the embassy (Goebbels gave such promise in September 1932 (ibid, f. 7, 543)) and the eventual establishment of good relations between Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia, like those already existing between Rome and Moscow.

The Soviet contacts with Otto Strasser's group, which left NSDAP in 1930, were more intimate. NKID records do not reveal whether Strasser received the financial support he sought nor whether he was allowed to go to Moscow (ibid, 533). B. Vinogradov felt that Otto Strasser and his friends "undoubtedly could play some role in disintegration of the Nat[ional] Soc[ialist] party" (Ibid, folder 68, f. 8, p. 21).

Contacts between the Soviets and the Nazis were a well-guarded secret, but some vague information about them leaked to the press. "I know definitely" that Moscow was "anticipating the advent of a Hitlerite regime in Germany with the utmost optimism", a well-informed observer wrote in September 1932. Either Stalin or Hitler would "have no qualms" in continuing Soviet-German collaboration (C. F. Melville. The Russian Face of Germany: An Account of the Secret Military Relations between German and Soviet-Russian Governments. L., 1932, 173-174).

"It also appeared from Embassy's investigation", Frederick Sackett reported to the State Department in December 1932, "that even in the event of the advent of a Hitler Government in Germany, the Soviets as well as Germans would not expect a change in Russo-German relations. Leaders of the Hitler movement have repeatedly stated that while they would endeavor to exterminate the Communist movement in Germany, their relations with the Soviet Government would be similar to the relations between Italy and Russia" (F. M. Sackett to the Secretary of State, Berlin, Dec. 12, 1932, SDNA: 761. 62/280). See also W. Laqueur. Russia and Germany: A Century of Conflict. Boston, Toronto, 1965, 163; R. C. Tucker. Op. cit., 582-584.
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