News In Brief

Moscow prepares citizens for Reagan-Gromyko meeting

Western diplomats say the Kremlin may be preparing the Soviet people to accept a proposed Sept. 28 meeting between Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko and President Reagan by drawing an analogy to Moscow's 1939 treaties with Adolf Hitler.

The official news agency, Tass, said Moscow had been forced to make a deal with the Nazi dictator because it was trying to avert a war and in any case needed time to improve its defenses. The lessons from that period were still relevant today, it said.

Western diplomats said the phrasing made it clear the Kremlin was trying to draw parallels between Hitler and Reagan and to show that Moscow was faced with a similar situation now as it had been in 1939.

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