Bullitt, William Christian (bŏlˈĭt) [key], 1891–1967, American diplomat, b. Philadelphia. A member of the American delegation to the Paris Peace Conference following World War I, he was sent by President Wilson on a secret mission to Russia. When his report favoring recognition of the Communist government was rejected, he resigned and later bitterly attacked the Versailles Treaty before the Senate. After 12 years of private life, he was made special assistant to Cordell Hull and served (1933–36) as first U.S. ambassador to the USSR. Later he was ambassador to France (1936–40), ambassador at large in the Middle East (1941–42), and special assistant to the Secretary of the Navy (1942–43). He served (1944–45) as a major in the Free French army under Charles de Gaulle.
See his The Great Globe Itself (1946); For the President, selections from his diplomatic correspondence with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, ed. by O. H. Bullitt (1972); biography by B. Farnsworth (1967).
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