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Rear Admiral Newton A. McCully, Special Agent in Southern Russia, Department of State, to Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby

Constantinople, January 18, 1920.

[Received January 21—10:28 a.m.]

44. Following from Admiral McCully.

“1. Section 2. January 18, 11 p.m. Evacuation of wounded begins to-morrow probably to Malta to be followed by evacuation of women and children which is not yet decided. Total number to be evacuated about 20,000. This evacuation necessary not only for safety of those evacuated but because present feeling for safety of their families is causing demoralization of forces at the front. Recommend that such United States vessels as may be available assist in the evacuation. Outlook from this point of view for future effective operations Denikine forces not encouraging but most pessimistic views are usually found in rear of army.1 Denikine forces now still hold lines in vicinity of Tikhoretskaya, about 75 miles southeast of Rostoff and railway from thence to Ekaterinodar but Grozny is being evacuated. Apparently intention to hold Novorossiisk until evacuation completed and pending developments. The Crimea is to be held as long as possible, Perekop and Sivash having been fortified and naval vessels stationed on each flank. No report concerning happenings at Rostoff after its capture. Colonels Castle and Cox now at Ekaterinodar.”


Source Note: Printed, Foreign Relations of the United States, 1920, Volume 3, 575.

Footnote 1: That is, the armed forces until the command of Anton I. Denikin. Formerly a Lieutenant General in the Imperial Russian Army, Denikin became the leader of the anti-Bolshevik Volunteer Army, aligned with the Tsarist White Russians (Mensheviks) during the Russian Civil War (1917-1922). Denikin’s forces campaigned in southern Russia throughout 1918-1920, seizing control of territory throughout the Black Sea region until they were stopped 26 miles south of Moscow and forced into constant retreat by the Red and Black Armies. Denikin was eventually forced into exile in April 1920.