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Izvestia Publishes JFK Speech for Soviet Citizenry

June 12, 1963 - Izvestia, the national newspaper of the Soviet Union, published today the text of President Kennedy’s speech Monday in which he appealed for re-examination of attitudes toward the cold war. The decision to make the speech available to the Soviet people through the Government newspaper was interpreted as an indication that the speech had made a favorable impression in the Kremlin. Critical of Soviet policy and Communism in some sections, the speech was being read eagerly by Muscovites, who receive Izvestia in the evenings. The newspaper, which is reported to have a circulation of more than 4.5 million, is distributed in other major centers of the Soviet Union on the following morning. The initial reaction of Soviet citizens in conversation with foreigners was guarded but unmistakably appreciative of the conciliatory tone of the speech. A Soviet intellectual commented: “The speech and its publication in Izvestia show that there can be mutual understanding.” A young woman worker was overheard to ask a friend: “Have you read the Kennedy speech? It is all about peace.”


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