Written: Written in January, not before the 4th, 1921
Published: First published in 1965 in Collected Works, Fifth (Russian) Ed., Vol. 52. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, page 68a.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
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Of course, it is all right in principle. But is it worth while? Hardly. It comes to nothing in practice. It is not worth while “offending” Béla Kun and the other comrades for nothing. We shall probably gain by only exchanging the hostages for the People’s Commissars.
With communist greetings,
 This is written on G. V. Chicherin’s letter concerning the forthcoming talks with Horthy’s Hungarian government over the exchange of People’s Commissars of the Hungarian Soviet Republic, whom, it had arrested, for hostages in Soviet Russia. Chicherin said that these talks could become more general, and that the Hungarian Communists had earlier expressed dissatisfaction over the Soviet Government’s agreement with the reactionary Horthy government on the repatriation of prisoners of war. Chicherin wrote: “... I should like to know the attitude you take, in principle, on whether it is admissible for us to conduct political negotiations with reactionary governments, when the issue is our external security” (Central Party Archives of the Institute of Marxism-Leninism of the C.P.S.U. Central Committee).