Washington last month checked on the acceptability of Charles E. Bohlen as U.S. Ambassador to replace George F. Kennan, declared unacceptable by the Russians. The Russian reply: Bohlen is persona grata. Then, where the Administration did not expect it, trouble arose.

Some Senate Republicans, studying Bohlen's record, had doubts. Handsome, Harvard-bred "Chip" Bohlen has made Russia his special field ever since he entered the Foreign Service in 1929. State assigned him to study Russian, sent him to Moscow (along with Kennan) in the '30s. Russia fascinated Bohlen; he even became an expert balalaika player. By 1944 he was chief of Eastern...

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