100th Birthday Anniversary of Anatoly Dobrynin
Russian Embassy in the United Stated hosted the reception dedicated to the outstanding diplomat, former Soviet Ambassador to the US Anatoly Dobrynin featuring National Dance Company of Siberia.
Remarks by Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the U.S. Anatoly Antonov
We’re celebrating an important event – the 100th anniversary of outstanding Soviet diplomat Anatoly Fyodorovich Dobrynin. He holds a special place in the history of our country and our Embassy. For 24 years the Soviet Ambassador defended with dignity the interests of his motherland in the USA.
His name is associated with major achievements in settling global and regional crises, ensuring the fulfillment of agreements on limitation and reduction of strategic weapons, establishing sustained and multidimensional ties between the USSR and the U.S. during the Cold war.
It is safe to say that Anatoly Dobrynin was a person of natural gifts. According to his contemporaries, he combined creative thinking, analytical mind, phenomenal memory, great erudition and exceptional working efficiency with great integrity, kindness and respectful attitude towards his partners, employees and colleagues. Anatoly Fyodorovich raised a whole generation of Soviet and Russian diplomats and political figures. Many of them work today in leading positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as at other ministries and agencies, including the Administration of the President of the Russian Federation.
This outstanding Soviet diplomat had a striking ability to establish good relations with absolutely different people. This quality helped him to maintain confidential communication channels with the White House, regardless of any changes in the political situation in the U.S.
As the Soviet Ambassador to the United States, Dobrynin remained in Washington through six US presidencies – from John Kennedy to Ronald Reagan. And he had a constant informal contact with each of them. Moreover, according to his fellow diplomats, “there was no single powerful person in Washington with whom Anatoly Fyodorovich wasn’t acquainted”.
Anatoly Dobrynin had particularly warm relations with National Security Advisor and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. No wonder that after retiring the American diplomat sent to his counterpart a photo signed: “To my adversary, partner, and friend”. They kept in touch even after the Ambassador went back home.
Anatoly Fyodorovich had to work under difficult circumstances arising from the confrontation of the two superpowers. One of his greatest feats as Ambassador came in his first months on the job, when he became renowned for his role in defusing the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. In those days, as Dobrynin later confessed, the world was on the brink of a nuclear catastrophe. The fact that the situation was resolved by diplomatic means is to a great extent an achievement of the head of the Soviet diplomatic mission to the U.S.
During his entire tenure in Washington Dobrynin opposed harsh confrontation with the U.S. and believed that any controversial situation could be resolved through talks. The highly experienced top Soviet diplomat in D.C. understood: only keeping up a dialogue and cooperation between the two superpowers was the key to maintaining peace and to the survival of the mankind. He kept telling leaders both in Moscow and Washington that there were no alternatives to dialogue.
We are confident that today, too, regardless of multiple difficulties in Russia-U.S. relations there is a wide range of issues that require cooperation between our countries. These include strategic stability, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, resolution of regional conflicts, peaceful space exploration.
Beyond any doubt mutually beneficial cooperation of the two largest nuclear powers and permanent members of the UN Security Council meets the interests of the entire international community, promoting stronger global security. Our countries need to restore effective cooperation, search for ways of reconciliation and reach compromises. Build equitable relations meeting the interests of both nations. We are ready for that and expect reciprocity from our American colleagues and partners.