5 December 2006
This lot is offered without a reserve
KHRUSHCHEV, Nikita (1894-1971), Soviet premier. Typed letter signed ("N. Khrushchev"), as Soviet Premier, to President Victor Paz Estenssoro, President of Bolivia; The Kremlin, Moscow, 31 December 1963.
18 pages, 4to, in paper folder embossed with hammer and sickle. Each of the 18 sheets on heavy cream paper, watermarked with a hammer and sickle emblem between wheat sheaves. In Russian.
KHRUSHCHEV TRIES TO RESTORE HIS CREDIBILITY WITH A SOUTH AMERICAN ALLY. With his reputation badly bruised by his humiliating back-down during the Cuban Missile crisis of 1962, the Soviet leader here makes a lengthy statement to Bolivian President Paz Estenssoro about the Soviet Union's determination to play a major diplomatic role in resolving tensions in Berlin, Korea and Vietnam. He calls the divisions in these countries "a major obstacle in securing world peace" and pledges his commitment on behalf of the Soviet Union to achieving solutions that will bring about "the disarmament of all parties involved." Only such an approach, he says, "has the potential for bringing world peace." With the verbosity for which he was famous, Khrushchev then launches into a sweeping survey of the world scene, particularly those areas where the United States and the USSR were in conflict: not just Berlin, Korea and Vietnam, but all of Southeast Asia, Indonesia, Taiwan and Iran. Disputes, he cautions, "should never reach the state of full-scale war." But ever the skeptic, Khrushchev realizes that "The problem is actually coming to an international agreement. This would not be the first time these discussions have taken place. Not all nations are serious about achieving disarmament." Ironically, both he and the recipient of this letter would be out of power within a year. The Politburo sacked Khrushchev in 1964 and the Bolivian generals ousted President Paz Estenssoro in a November 1964 coup.
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