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Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/german/foreign-office/soviet-relations-preface


Archive/File: orgs/german/foreign-office/soviet-relations-preface
Last-Modified: 1997/10/19

              NAZI-SOVIET RELATIONS, 1939-1941
                              
  Documents from the Archives of the German Foreign Office
                              
   Edited by Raymond James Sontag and James Stuart Beddie


Page II

                  Department of State, 1948
                              
            Department of State Publication 3023

Page III

                           Preface

     In  1945  the  American and British armies captured  the
archives  of  the  German  Foreign  Office  which  had   been
evacuated  from Berlin. Use of the archives for  intelligence
purposes began immediately. Later, it became evident that the
documents  concerning the aims and methods of German  foreign
policy  should  be published for the enlightenment  of  world
opinion, including German opinion.
     In  June  1946 the Department of State and  the  British
Foreign  Office agreed to sponsor jointly the publication  of
approximately  twenty  volumes of documents  illustrative  of
German   foreign  policy  from  1918  to  1945.  The   French
Government subsequently became a party to this agreement. The
documents were to be printed in the original German, and  the
more   important   were  also  to  be  printed   in   English
translation.  It  was agreed that the selection  and  editing
were  to  be performed on the basis of the highest  scholarly
objectivity   and  that,  to  secure  an  authoritative   and
scholarly  documentary record of German foreign  policy,  the
services of private scholars should be enlisted, as  well  as
the   services  of  scholars  in  government  service.   Each
Government  reserved  the  right to  publish  separately  any
portion of the documents.
     The   Department  of  State  has  decided   to   publish
separately the most significant documents bearing on  German-
Soviet  relations during 1939-1941. This collection has  been
made  by  the  Washington editors of the  documents,  Raymond
James  Sontag  and  James  Stuart Beddie,  assisted  by  Jean
Brownell Dulaney.

Page IV

                      Editors' Foreword

     The  editors have selected for publication at this  time
all  documents essential to an understanding of the political
relations between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union from  the
first efforts to reach an agreement in the spring of 1939  to
the  outbreak  of  war in June 1941. The  larger  publication
sponsored  by  the American, British, and French  Governments
will  include additional details, as well as documents  which
throw light incidentally on Russo-German relations, but which
are  concerned  with  other subjects. The lengthy  agreements
defining   frontiers,  and  the  bulky  details  of  economic
relations,   have  been  left  to  the  larger   publication.
Documents  summarizing economic negotiations  have,  however,
been  included.  Each  document has  been  printed  in  full,
without omissions or alterations.
     The  translations,  except for a  few  prepared  by  the
editors, were made by the Central Translating Division of the
Department of State, and revised by the editors.
     The editors have had complete independence in their work
and  final  responsibility  for  the  selection  of  relevant
documents.

RAYMOND JAMES SONTAG
JAMES STUART BEDDIE


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