Gareth Jones

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The Daily Express, April 3rd, 1933 Page 1


The Real Truth About Russia at Last

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 Below Mr. Gareth Jones, having just arrived back from Russia, with a story which will startle the world, tells what he found out in Moscow at the time of the Britons’ arrest.


Mr. Gareth Jones is research adviser on foreign affairs to Mr. Lloyd George and knows the Soviet countries inside out. In this exclusive series of  “Daily Express” articles he will reveal the long-awaited truth about the real Russia of today.

Mr. Monkhouse and Mr. Nordwall, two of the six arrested Britons who were released, are to be tried with the rest.  They were charged last night with military espionage, wrecking and bribery.  The story of the anxious wives of the arrested men is told. 


THREE weeks ago the news flashed round the world that six British en­gineers had been arrested in Moscow.  They were accused of willfully wrecking the Soviet electrical industry and of plotting against the Soviet Government. 

When I heard of it I was seated at tea with a group of diplomats in a house in Kharkoff, 400 miles south of Moscow.  A silence fell over us when a servant entered with the news.  “It is incredible,” said one of those present.  Another laughed cynically, “There are so many mad rumours in Russia today that the people are willing to believe anything. But that the Ogpu has arrested six British engineers!  No, that is going too far.’’  And we returned, relieved, to our diplomatic gossip. 

One of the group, however, was not satisfied.  “Ask the servant where he saw it.”  The servant came and stated that he had seen it in that morning’s copy of the “Communist,” a Ukrainian paper.  I rushed out to a newspaper stand.  “All copies sold.’’  I went through the dirty Ukrainian streets.  “Not a single copy left,’’ was the answer everywhere.  I returned empty-handed, but feeling satisfied that it could be nothing more than a mere rumour.  Next morning, however, I looked at the ‘‘Izvestia,’’ the official organ of the Soviet Government, and there the news stood in black and white. 

It had no glaring headlines.  It was a plain, simple statement in a lower corner of the paper to the effect that the Ogpu had discovered a wrecking organisation in the electrical industry, in which were involved six employees of Metropolitan-Vickers.  I run my eye down the list and suddenly fixed on one name:  “Alan Monkhouse!’’  I had known Alan Monkhouse on a previous visit to Moscow.  I had seen him at work in the office of Metropolitan there. 

I had admired his frank, open bearing, his friendly welcome, and the honest conscientious impression which he made.  I knew the deep respect in which the British colony in Moscow held him.  It seemed incredible that he should be at that moment in the Lubyanka, the headquarters of the Ogpu in Moscow. 

I did not really accept the news to be true until three days later when I arrived in Moscow, and there shook hands with Alan Monkhouse.  He was standing in the entrance hall of the British Embassy, a tall figure approaching middle-age, with a dignified bearing. 

Torture Of Continual Questions

He looked older than the previous time I had seen him when I was in Moscow in 1931.  He was nervous after the mental torture of continual questioning, but he smiled courageously.  I did not dare to question him on his imprisonment for I knew that if there was one thing he wished to avoid it was a questioner. 

So we chatted on general subjects, although in the back of our minds there remained the shadow of the arrests.  My admiration for Alan Monkhouse is still greater after seeing the calm way in which he takes his troubles. After his release he even ventured to go back to the prison in the Lubyanka in order to take clothes to Mr. Thornton.  Few men would return uninvited to cells where they had gone through the inquisition of nineteen hours’ continuous questioning.  That Monkhouse did this aroused the applause of the British colony in Moscow, who also cheered the vigorous steps taken by the Ambassador to intervene for the prisoners.  Sir Esmond Ovey visited them, and saw that they were well taken care of. I was impressed by the deep resentment felt at the British Embassy, and at the way they are working night and day on the case. 

After again seeing Monkhouse I felt indignant that such a charge could possibly have been brought up against him and the other engineers.  Here was first-class man, trusted by all, the representative of one of Britain’s greatest firms a man who spoke with sympathy of the courage and energy of the Soviet planners, being accused of a fantastic crime. Sabotage and counter-revolution are not British terms.  Nothing is further front British mentality than underground plots for subversive purposes. 

Loyalty is certainly in the British mentality, and that Monkhouse, whom I know and trust should have been disloyal to his firm and to the Government which had employed his firm, was to all the British in Moscow an infamous accusation. 

What could there be to explain it? I wondered.  Then I looked across the river to the Kremlin, whose golden domes and red ramparts face the Embassy.  Within that citadel, the Kremlin, lives Stalin.  There the whole policy has been framed which has changed the life of every man, woman, and child in Russia in the last five years.  There Ivan the Terrible, many hundreds of years ago, held sway and in divulged in an orgy of terror and torture.  Was the clue to be found in the traditions of the Kremlin, which has no respect for the life or rights of any, human individual? 

People Seething With Discontent 

The Kremlin gave me one clue to the arrest.  Half an hour later I walked past another building.  It was of ugly grey and yellow brick, and was formerly an insurance office.  Outside, on the pavement, a few Red sentries marched up and down with fixed bayonets.  This building gave me another clue.  It was the Lubyanka, the headquarters of the Ogpu.  Then I realised that the cause for the arrests was to be found in the Kremlin and in the Ogpu. 

The Kremlin is now panic-stricken, for a catastrophe has come over that rich country of Russia.  The people are seething with discontent.  Among the ranks of the young Communists there is an ominous rumble of wrath at the crashing of their ideals.  The worker, having been promised a paradise, has had his fine dream shattered. 

Fear, which has so often gripped the Kremlin in centuries past, has returned to haunt its dwellers.  That passion which has stamped its mark upon all who lived there, from the early Muscovite princes to Ivan the Terrible, has now attacked the proletarian Communists who reign within its portals.  Once, hundreds of years ago, the rulers dreaded the coming of Tatar hordes.  Now they dread the wrath of a starving peasantry.  Seized with panic, they seek to find the foreigner on whom to put the blame when their promises  fail. 

Party Dominated By Small Clique 

What of the Ogpu?  When I looked at its headquarters I realised that this arrest was a symbol of the grip which the Ogpu has over the whole life of the Communist Party. 

When fear gets uppermost more and more power is put into the hands of the agents of fear, the Ogpu, and that small clique now dominates the rest of the party.  It is showing its power by arresting on its own initiative six British engineers. 

Fear in the Kremlin and the domination by the agents of fear, the Ogpu - these are the two reasons why our engineer’s sit in the Moscow prison.

To see a PDF facsimile of the above please CLICK HERE

On Saturday 1st April in order to promote Gareth's series of articles (scheduled to appear during the following week), the Daily Express ran a front page publicity piece....

The Truth about Russia

A few days ago Mr. Gareth Jones was in Russia .

He was dining with some diplomats when one of the servants told them that six British engineers had been arrested.

They laughed at the story and said that the Russians were “all nerves”.

A little later Mr. Gareth Jones saw Mr. Monkhouse, who had been subjected to nineteen hours of the Ogpu's third degree.

Mr. Gareth Jones lifts the veil in Monday's “Daily Express”.


This is the first of a remarkable series which will reveal the truth about Russia today-the truth about the villages, the factories, the towns and the Kremlin itself.

For some time past Mr. Gareth Jones has been Research Adviser on Foreign Affairs to Mr. Lloyd George. He speaks and writes Russian fluently.

He went there in 1930 and doubted.

He went there in 1931 and wondered.

He went there a few weeks ago – and has come back with a story that will startle the world.

The Soviet will not admit the representatives of British newspapers into Russia .

Mr. Gareth Jones' articles will break the silence which the Soviet has tried to impose upon the newspapers of Great Britain .


To see a PDF facsimile of the above please CLICK HERE


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Original Research, Content & Site Design by Nigel Linsan Colley. Copyright © 2001-17 All Rights Reserved Original document transcriptions by M.S. Colley.Click here for Legal Notices.  For all further details email:  Nigel Colley or Tel: (+44)  0796 303  8888