Dean Acheson, mustache bristling with indignation, strode into the State Department pressroom one day last week. Correspondents, scrambling to their feet at the unusual visitation, did not have to ask the reason. The Secretary of State had news: Moscow had just asked the U.S. to recall Ambassador to Russia George F. Kennan.

Diplomat Kennan had talked to reporters in Berlin three weeks before and had made a statement: the life of a U.S. diplomat in Soviet Russia is little better than existence was in Nazi Germany, where he had been briefly interned...

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