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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Office of the Historian > Foreign Relations of the United States > Kennedy Administration > Volume XVII
Foreign Relations, 1961-1963, Volume XVII, Near East, 1961-1962
Released by the Office of the Historian
Documents 218-245

218. Record of Briefing for the NSC Standing Group Meeting/1/

Washington, March 23, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, S/S-NSC Files: Lot 70 D 265, NSC Standing Group Meeting 3/23/62. Top Secret. Drafted by Bowling. The source text bears numerous handwritten additions and corrections; presumably the drafter missed parts of the conversation and someone filled in blanks and revised the text. According to a March 22 memorandum by Studds inviting several offices in the Department of State and AID to send representatives to this NEA briefing for Under Secretary McGhee, the briefing was to be held at 11 a.m. on March 23 in preparation for the Standing Group meeting scheduled for 2:30 p.m. that day. (Ibid.)

Mr. Talbot pointed out that the Shah was highly emotional and was particularly disturbed by what he thought to be our inclination toward being more generous to neutrals than to our allies. Mr. Talbot said that we very much need the Shah in the next few years. We need an increasingly reformist government in Iran and a controlled revolution there. Our primary task during the Shah's visit will be to reassure Iran, and specifically the Shah. Uppermost in the Shah's mind is the Iranian Military establishment. He feels that the US has no deterrent in the event of a Soviet attack on Iran. Our job is to convey to the Shah the US concept of global military strategy and of Iran's place in this overall picture, attempting to convince him of the need for reductions and improvement of his armed forces.

Mr. Talbot pointed out that three recommendations had been made with regard to the aid level in Iran. The Kitchen Committee recommended a Multi-year program of $300 million dollars. State-Defense and AID have agreed on a Multi-year program of $330 million. Amb. Holmes recommends a program of $420 million, which he insists is essential to prevent the Shah's abdication. The State-Defense-AID recommendations are on the President's desk now. The President has deferred any decision until he has had a chance to speak with the Ambassador. The major difference between the $430 million and the $330 million program is the Shah's desire for a sophisticated anti-aircraft defense system. Mr. Rostow pointed out that our military has no formal place for Iran in our War planning. The Shah definitely feels that he should have such a role. William Bundy in Defense is working on a paper that will endeavor to convince the Shah of the credibility of our global deterrent. Mr. Rostow stressed the importance of being able to say to the Shah that we are committed to defend Iran and have a significant capacity to do so. For, he pointed out, only if we can convince him of this can we proceed to talk to him rationally about his own forces. We must, said Mr. Rostow, convince our military to make this notion credible to the Shah. He suggested in this connection that the Shah be invited to see for himself STRAC forces in a demonstration of their capability, and that he be told that these forces are earmarked for the defense of such countries as Iran. Mr. McGhee emphasized that we can no longer stall the Shah; that this has been a blind, corrosive and dishonest dialogue. He agreed to the importance of having our military talk to the Shah about the STRAC forces. Mr. Rostow said that we view a Soviet attack on Iran as an unlikely contingency; that in the event of such an attack hostilities could probably not be confined solely to Iran; and we have units committed to defend Iran in such an unlikely eventuality. The criteria, he said, for the Iranian forces should be: A) an effective internal defense force; B) possessing a high civic action component; and C) able to fulfill some useful role in connection with the arrival of STRAC forces. He said that the Shah's criteria for these forces were: A) Ability to sustain his throne within Iran; B) to provide the best possible defense against Soviet attack; and C) to provide a capability to take on Iraq and Afghanistan at the same time.

AID, Mr. Gaud stressed the importance of conveying to the Shah our view that the main threat to Iran is now an internal one. He said that the Third Plan seems to have broken down and that AID recommends against giving the Shah specific AID figures now. The real problem he said is one of organization and intent, not one of money. The Iranians seem to be afraid to make decisions and there is a very real need to talk toughly to the Shah. We must talk to him about our overall relations, not just about military needs. Mr. McGhee felt strongly that our program should be put to the Shah when he is here and he asked that W. Bundy be pushed to produce a convincing paper on our military policy before the Shah's arrival so that we can work towards joint military planning with Iran.

Mr. McGhee asked Messrs. Talbot, Gaud and Rostow to accompany him at the NSC Standing Group Meeting.

M--Mr. McGhee, Mr. Cottman
S/S--Mr. Manfull, Mr. Studds
AID--Mr. Gaud, Mr. Kauffman, Mr. Bell
NEA--Mr. Talbot, Mr. Bowling
S/P--Mr. Rostow, Mr. Ramsey
INR--Mr. Hughes

219. Record of Actions at the NSC Standing Group Meeting

Washington, March 23, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, S/S-NSC Files: Lot 70 D 265, NSC Standing Group Meeting, 3/23/62. Secret. Copies were distributed to McGhee, Deputy Secretary of Defense Roswell Gilpatric, Director of Central Intelligence John A. McCone, McGeorge Bundy, and Executive Secretary of the NSC Bromley Smith. On March 22, the following documents had been circulated for consideration at the March 23 meeting: memorandum from Battle to Bundy, March 8 (Document 209); memorandum from Hamilton to the NSC (Document 208); memorandum from Talbot to McGhee, March 22 (Supplement, the compilation on Iran).

Item 1--Iran

(Mr. Phillips Talbot, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, and Mr. William Gaud, Assistant Administrator, Near East and South Asia, Agency for International Development, attended for this item.)

a. Discussed the forthcoming visit of the Shah of Iran and noted the importance of reaching a decision on an agreed aid level for Iran as promptly as possible after the return to Washington of Ambassador Holmes.

b. Agreed that the President should be asked to convey to the Shah an outline of the U.S. aid "package," even though the U.S. program would not be presented to him in all its details until sometime after the visit.

c. Agreed that special security measures should be taken to insure that no untoward incident takes place during the Shah's visit.

[Here follows Item 2, Policy Directives.]

220. Record of Debriefing of the NSC Standing Group Meeting

Washington, March 23, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, S/S-NSC Files: Lot 70 D 265, NSC Standing Group Meeting, 3/23/62. Top Secret. Presumably drafted by Bowling who conducted the debriefing. The NSC Standing Group meeting was held at 2:30 p.m. on March 23; see Document 219.

Mr. McGhee asked about the status of the recommended $330 million Aid Program. (Recommended in the State-Defense-AID package)./2/ He was told that the President is deferring any decision on this, pending his talks with Amb. Holmes.

/2/Document 208.

Mr. McGhee suggested the possibility of joint planning exercises for the defense of Iran. It was pointed out, however, that joint planners would probably create a demand for still greater military expenditures. Therefore, the suggestion was rejected. Mr. McGeorge Bundy said that he was becoming quite sympathetic with the Shah. Everyone agreed that the Shah had no real defense against Soviet attack.

It was decided that the Shah should be given a briefing on STRAC potentialities (by Lt. Gen. Quinn). Mr. William Bundy is to look into this. William Bundy said, however, that Iran was the one place to which the STRAC forces were not really applicable. He therefore felt badly about such a briefing, given the fact that we are "not about to send our two STRAC divisions into Iran."

William Bundy said that the real dangers of the Shah's visit would be the questions he would probably ask: such as, How do your troops get in? and What about the prepositioning of equipment? He pointed out that it would be difficult to come up with any credible plan. He asked what "degree of phoniness" we could get away with. It was also pointed out that Iran's 1921 Treaty with the USSR would cause difficulties with the prepositioning of any equipment.

No real conclusions were reached concerning the presentation of a plan to the Shah, but William Bundy was nevertheless to try to come up with a paper by next Wednesday or Thursday which would convince the Shah of the credibility of the US deterrent and of our ability to come to the aid of Iran.

It was pointed out by McGeorge Bundy that merely convincing the Shah of our strategic superiority would not be sufficient. What kind of assurances can we give the Shah? It was concluded that Gen. Lemnitzer's statements at the CENTO conference in March 1961/3/ represented just about the limit of what we could say and that the President will probably be unable to do more than simply repeat Gen. Lemnitzer's commitment made at that time.

/3/See Supplement, the regional compilation, for documentation relating to the April 1961 CENTO Ministerial Council meeting.

Messrs. McGhee and Talbot are to see the President on Friday and take a draft talking paper with them.

It was also decided that the Pentagon would give the Shah a briefing on our assessment of the Iraq-Afghanistan potential (which is considerably lower than the Shah's assessment thereof). It was decided that the overall US Program for Iran should be presented to the Shah while he is here (or at least enough of it to reveal to him the "bad news" aspect thereof).

AID is still unwilling to make a specific dollar commitment to the Third Plan. They insist on prior pressure.

McGeorge Bundy pointed out that a Soviet attack on Iran would not be "so damned unlikely" if the Soviets find out about this kind of thinking. It was reluctantly concluded that the hard military facts made a bunch of dreams of McGhee's and Bundy's desires, to reassure the Shah. It was also pointed out that this sort of military thinking put us on a collision course with Gen. Norstad with regard to supporting assistance to Greece.

It was decided that the Shah would be given a general outline of the Aid Program.

221. Telegram From the Embassy in Syria to the Department of State

Damascus, March 24, 1962, 5 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 683.84A/3-2462. Secret; Niact; Limit Distribution. Also sent to USUN and repeated to Amman, Baghdad, Beirut, Cairo, Jidda, London, Paris, Rome, Tel Aviv, and Moscow.

601. Embtel 600./2/ Rome for Rood. Paris for SHAPE/L. From study of chronology set down in reference telegram, outline of tactics and strategy of current SARG policy toward Israel seem take shape:

/2/Dated March 24. (Ibid.)

Primary problem is to distinguish between SARG's ostensible objectives and its real objectives. Ostensible objective of its note of March 22/3/ is induce UN to compel Israel to comply with partition and refugee resolutions, on pain of expulsion. Some Arab officials here, like Saudi Ambassador, naively profess to believe that, since Israel failed live up to conditions of its admission to UN, Secretary General should take routine police action of barring Israeli representatives from further meetings. Others speculate GA vote would be required.

/3/The Syrian Government delivered copies of its lengthy note, which described in detail Israel's transgressions against Syria, to representatives of the Arab states and Security Council member states in Damascus on March 22. The Embassy transmitted a translation of the note to the Department of State in telegram 597 from Damascus, March 23. (Ibid., 683.84A/3-2362)

We believe, however, Prime Minister Dawalibi and most high-level SARG officials too realistic even to dream of so unlikely a prospect as Israel's being expelled. In fact Cabinet Secretary General Mahayiri cited for us cases of states that have defied UN resolutions with impunity-- notably UAR in its Suez Canal policy.

Is then SARG's belligerent stance of irrevocable opposition to Israeli diversion a propaganda tactic to counter Cairo's charges that imperialism dominates Syria? If so, SARG policy is bankrupt before it starts; it will be only matter of time before Israel begins pumping and SARG stands, like Qasim before Kuwait, stripped of pretense to a sound foreign policy.

In Embassy's view, however, SARG policy toward Israel has more substance than Qasim's toward Kuwait and consequently holds more danger for Middle East peace.

We believe sequence of events cited in reference telegram bears out our suspicion, stated in Embtel 583,/4/ that SARG does not want to consider Lake Tiberias incidents reasonably and in isolation--that instead their purpose and strategy is to focus all their efforts on Jordan waters and somehow to secure indefinite postponement of Israeli diversion and resultant "strengthening of the enemy."

/4/Dated March 20. (Ibid., 684A.85322/3-2062)

In this connection, we take Dawalibi's bald statement of March 22 (Embtel 593)/5/ that he wants USG to take public position against unilateral Israel diversion as corroboration of second thesis presented Embtel 583--that USG is prime target of present SARG foreign policy campaign.

/5/Dated March 22. (Ibid., 683.84A/3-2262)

Embassy sees this campaign as two-pronged. On one hand, by private statements and judicious placement of news stories, SARG is suggesting that penalty for US inflexibility on Jordan waters would be destruction US position in Middle East, advancement of Soviet causes therein, and risk of Arab-Israeli war.

On other hand, by taking issue to UN on "legal" grounds, SARG probably seeking provide USG with face-saving means for modifying its Palestine policy. We understand SARG's March 22 note was conceived by Dawalibi and drafted by Syria's reputedly pro-Soviet expert on law and UN, Salah Tarazi. We suspect they hope US will espouse their case, not because US is enchanted with its legal precision, but because it offers least embarrassing alternative to Middle East chaos.

While we are first to sense disingenuousness of SARG's artifices and strategy, we are nevertheless genuinely concerned on two major counts:

(A) As we foresee next SC episode, all too likely that a draft resolution unpalatable--however unreasonably--to Arabs will be vetoed by Soviets. Net result would be that substantive situation would find itself unchanged except with Soviets popular heroes and US in doghouse.

(B) We can not dismiss risk of collision of greater than incident proportions. Department has already commented that Kursi raid apparently failed in its objective of intimidating SARG. Jerusalem's 179/6/ has reported marked confidence of Syrian COS. In subjecting USG to concentrated pressure tactics, we think SARG willing to carry its tactics to such extremes that assumption SARG merely bluffing could be highly risky.

/6/Dated March 23. (Ibid., 683.84A/3-2362)


222. Telegram From the Embassy in Israel to the Department of State

Tel Aviv, March 26, 1962, 8 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 683.84A/3-2662. Confidential; Niact. Repeated to USUN, Amman, Beirut, Cairo, Damascus, Jerusalem, and London.

623. Foreign Minister/2/ requested me to call this afternoon to express deep concern over what Israelis believe may be developing US point of view regarding Israeli sovereignty over Lake Tiberias. She stated in talk March 23 between members Israeli Embassy Washington and Ludlow of Department,/3/ latter advanced theory that if part of lake bounded by demilitarized zone, question of sovereignty not decided because of provisions in General Armistice Agreement (GAA) relating to territory and boundaries in such zones. She rejected this argument firmly, declaring that Israeli sovereignty over entire lake absolutely clear and unquestioned since GAA. She referred to Johnston mission which continually reiterated fact lake lay in Israeli territory and was under Israeli sovereignty. Even Syrians, she declared, had not mentioned anything about demilitarized waters in lake until after incident of March 16/17.

/2/Golda Meir.

/3/The Israeli Embassy had requested the meeting to discuss remarks made by Ludlow during Ambassador Harman's meeting with Assistant Secretary Talbot on March 20; see Document 216. A memorandum of the conversation between Ludlow and Hanan Bar-On, Counselor of the Israeli Embassy, is in Department of State, Central Files, 683.84A/3-2362.

Legal adviser Rosenne stated lake included within international boundaries of Palestine by British-French agreement in 1923 and it was agreed in 1949 when GAA drawn up that Syrians would retire beyond these international boundaries. Question of sovereignty raised tangentially in Security Council late in 1955, he said, but Israeli sovereignty not challenged by anyone but Syrians at that time and British and French delegates both stated emphatically in January 1956 that Lake Tiberias within Israel.

Mrs. Meir then commented that Israeli sovereignty over lake had not been questioned before except by Syrians and Israeli gravest concern now raised by US bringing matter to fore. Should Syrians sense any hesitation in US point of view relative to Israeli sovereignty over lake, Mrs. Meir believed trouble would then really begin and Syria could be expected in those circumstances abandon principles underlying Johnston plan, overthrow GAA, and perhaps resort to more serious measures. It should [be] clearly understood Israel did not plan to abandon in whole or in any part its claims over the lake. GOI was not disposed to obtain peace and quiet in area by permitting a chip of Israel to be broken off there. Jews were given nothing in Israel, she claimed, but bought the land with blood or money. As a consequence, GOI wanted Israel as it stood; peace and quiet in area not worth any invasion or diminution of Israeli sovereignty in any way. Normally, it was said, this question would have been raised in Washington but Gazit now in Israel so matter discussed here. To emphasize importance GOI attaches to subject, Mrs. Meir informed me she had interrupted full and heavy schedule attendant upon current visit of Swedish Prime Minister to raise matter with me.

I noted that I did not have benefit of any minutes on Ludlow-Israeli conversation and hence could not comment directly. Israelis had made statement of sovereignty, however, in their complaint to the Security Council and sovereignty was legal concept. As Department was working on all aspects of problem to prepare its position in the debate, legal facet also had to be considered and US motives should not be suspect merely because legal point raised. I was sure, I continued, Department wished reasonable solution to matter, but in view of expressed Israeli amazement and worry over point of view expressed in Department, I would endeavor ascertain Department's thinking.

Please advise.


223. Telegram From the Department of State to the Mission to the United Nations

Washington, March 26, 1962, 8:24 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 330/3-2662. Confidential; Priority. Drafted by Sisco, Buffum, Ludlow, and Palmer; cleared by Talbot, Thacher, and Wallner; and approved by Cleveland. Repeated to Damascus, Jerusalem, Cairo, London, Paris, Tel Aviv, Accra, Geneva, Caracas, Dublin, and Santiago.

2482. Re: Security Council consideration Tiberias incidents. Dept has given further consideration to US position in SC in light developments over past few days. While situation quiet, military build-up maintained and UN observers in some instances have been denied rightful access. In addition, USSR has promised all out support to Syrians. In these circumstances, US objectives in SC should be: (a) give maximum support to maintenance cease-fire; (b) strengthening UNTSO's peace keeping machinery and von Horn's position. We do not intend to acquiesce in GOI's relentlessly pursued, long-term program of eroding UNTSO authority. On other hand, Syria must be made to realize it cannot with impunity pour gunfire on Israelis legitimately fishing in Tiberias.

In view likelihood extreme res from UAR and/or USSR (and perhaps Ghana) and desirability exercising maximum degree control over outcome, USUN requested undertake consultations soonest with friendly SC members with view developing reasonably balanced res, which would contribute maximum to stability in Near East and do minimum damage to our relations with Israel and Arabs. We leave to your judgment when to approach UAR and Ghana. Also you may wish consider discussing substance of projected res with Syrians (and Israelis) at appropriate stage, though you may wish to work through UAR as Council member.

We recognize US under considerable pressures from both sides in this case, and that these pressures will mount as text of res crystallizes. Arabs will insist as minimum on outright condemnation rather than merely deploring Israeli raid, while GOI will undoubtedly resist any condemnation and insist at minimum reference to Israeli retaliation. Dept will transmit text draft res shortly. We informing Israelis and Syrians that insofar as we are concerned the primary tactical focus in SC consideration will of course be in New York rather than here or in respective capitals.

We assume that parties will wish to be heard in first instance on Wednesday./2/ We believe there would be advantage, giving full opportunity to digest von Horn report and for private consultations, to have several days delay in SC proceedings after parties have been heard. Possible desirability of the Council's asking von Horn to New York should be discussed in your consultations.

/2/March 28, the beginning of the U.N. Security debate on the violent incidents between Israel and Syria in the vicinity of Lake Tiberias.


224. Memorandum From Robert W. Komer of the National Security Council Staff to President Kennedy

Washington, March 28, 1962.

/1/Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Iran Subjects: Shah Visit, 3/25/62-3/28/62. Secret.

Strategy for Shah's Visit (10-16 April)

Since the Shah's visit will be a particularly delicate exercise in reassurance, we suggest at least two prior strategy sessions with you. The first would be this Friday to get your preliminary reactions and another next week when Holmes will be back. For background, you should read the attached./2/

/2/The attachments described in this memorandum were not attached to the source text, but are ibid.

While the Shah is much bucked up by earlier visit, he'll probably still insist on ventilating his military concerns. Our proposed strategy is to soften him up first by taking the initiative with a forthright confidence-building portrayal of continued US strategic superiority and our growing general purpose strength (we'd like your reactions to draft State talking points at Tab A)./3/

/3/Tab A is a 14-page talking paper, prepared by the Department of State and transmitted to the White House under cover of a copy of a March 28 memorandum from Battle to Bundy.

We believe, subject to your views, that the visit should not be used to negotiate a new MAP program. However, we will probably have to tell the Shah something in order to avoid risk of disillusionment later; we also want US agencies speaking with one voice.

Hence it is important to decide at least tentatively beforehand on what size MAP package to use as the backdrop for our approach. The MAP Steering Group recommended offering a $300 million five-year package as means of getting Iran to cut its forces from 200,000 to a more efficient 150,000. State/DOD/AID have all agreed to up this to $330 million, which they believe will be impressive, and is maximum in light of our world-wide commitments (see AID's powerful case at Tab B)./4/ However, Holmes argues that some $424 million is essential (Tab C);/5/ you will want to hear his case.

/4/Document 208.

/5/Document 172.

Also relevant is that we may have to commit $400-$600 million over a like period to Iran's Third Development Plan. Indeed, we want to use the occasion to educate the Shah on how undermining from within may be a greater threat than external attack (cf. Khrushchev's remarks to you at Vienna) and to convince him that such economic aid is just as important as MAP in meeting Iran's security needs.

R. W. Komer

225. Special National Intelligence Estimate

SNIE 36.1-62

Washington, March 28, 1962.

/1/Source: Central Intelligence Agency Files. Secret. According to a note on the cover sheet: "The following intelligence organizations participated in the preparation of this estimate: The Central Intelligence Agency and the intelligence organizations of the Departments of State, the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, The Joint Staff, and the NSA." All members of the U.S. Intelligence Board concurred in the estimate except the Atomic Energy Commission representative and the Assistant Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation, who abstained because the subject was outside their jurisdiction.


The Problem

To estimate the prospects for Nasser over the next year or two.


1. We do not foresee any significant challenge to Nasser's control of Egypt during the period of this estimate. His moves are often based on reactions rather than on advance planning. Hence, the years immediately ahead are likely to be uneasy ones, as he continues his vigorous ad hoc efforts to remake Egypt's social and political structure and to develop broader support for his regime. (Paras. 15-16)

2. Nasser's defeat in Syria has clearly cost him stature, but he remains the most formidable single leader in the Arab world. He will keep up propaganda and subversion against the secessionist Syrian regime and against rival Arab rulers elsewhere. He will remain strongly opposed to Arab communism. He is unlikely to cooperate in efforts to reduce tension with Israel. We do not believe, however, that he feels any immediate compulsion for direct overt use of force against either Israel or his Arab opponents. (Paras. 19-23, 29)

3. Nasser's basic suspicions of France and the UK probably will not change. For the next few years at least he is likely to be reasonably restrained in his dealings with both the US and the USSR because of his heavy dependence on the US for food and on the USSR for military and development aid. The nature of his interests and his objectives makes it likely that on many issues his views will be closer to those of the Bloc than the West. However, he will be alert to detect and will react vigorously against any attempt by either to use aid as a lever to influence his basic international position or his policies in Egypt and the Arab world. (Paras. 14, 28-31)

[Here follows the 6-page Discussion section; see Supplement, the compilation on the United Arab Republic.]

226. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rusk to President Kennedy

Washington, March 28, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 683.84A/3-2862. Confidential. Drafted by Thacher and Buffum on March 27. A handwritten note from Komer to Bundy, undated, attached to a copy of this memorandum in the Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Syria, 1/62-3/62, reads: "State clearly wants to flash this long and painful exegesis past the President because it fears domestic U.S. reaction to its proposed resolution 'condemning' Israel. I must agree State's case is a strong one, however. While Stevenson speech today orally 'condemned' Israelis, hope is that resolution can be delayed several days til Von Horn can come back and report. Israelis told State they could live with condemnation if resol. also condemned Syrian provocation. It doesn't go this far, merely says Syrians violated cease fire. Looming large in State's thinking is to avoid letting Soviets get all credit as friends of Arabs with an extreme resolution. No politician I, but recommend President back State."

Security Council Consideration of Syrian and Israeli Complaints

On March 28 the United Nations Security Council will commence consideration of Syrian and Israeli complaints regarding military incidents taking place around the northeastern area of Lake Tiberias. Exchanges of fire going back to late February culminated the night of March 16 in a retaliatory raid of Israeli forces numbering perhaps 300 or 400. They assaulted Syrian positions from which the Israelis alleged the Syrians had been firing upon their patrol boats and fishermen. The raid was probably intended also to intimidate the Syrian government and deter it from molestation of Israel's territory.

From information available thus far, it seems likely the Syrians were guilty of initiating fire against Israeli police boats from Syrian posts on the hillsides overlooking the lake. It is also possible that the boats came close to the Syrian shore. Also the Syrians have been very much concerned recently with Israel's plans to withdraw water from Lake Tiberias through pumping installations now being constructed on the northwestern shore although, as far as we can determine, these will not be ready to operate until late 1963.

We believe the Israelis have not taken advantage of the UNTSO machinery to the extent that they might have. While they are in contact with General Von Horn and his staff and agreed to the cease fire suggested by UNTSO officers, they have refused to return to the forum of the Israel-Syrian Mixed Armistice Commission for settlement of border outbreaks.

The Security Council has on past occasions, with U.S. support, condemned Israel's use of retaliatory raids as a means of settling border disturbances. However, there are differences between these recent incidents and the events of the Gaza raid of 1954/2/ and the Tiberias raid of 1956/3/ for both of which the Israelis were condemned by Security Council resolutions. In both of the earlier incidents the Israeli raiders clearly crossed into neighboring countries, and the reports of the Commander of the Truce Supervision Organization established this. In the present instance it appears the Israelis destroyed a Syrian military installation which was on the border of the demilitarized zone and probably partly in Syrian territory. The UNTSO Commander's report does not specify how far the Israelis penetrated. The Israelis are now asserting they did not go beyond the boundary of the DZ, and they may well attempt to differentiate their recent actions from their earlier ones in 1954 and 1955 on this basis.

/2/Reference is presumably to Israel's raid into Gaza and attack on Egyptian military personnel of February 28, 1955; see Foreign Relations, 1955-1957, vol. XIV, pp. 73-78.

/3/Reference is presumably to Israel's attack on Syrian positions in the Lake Tiberias area during the night of December 11/12, 1955; see ibid., pp. 854-856.

The U.S. has constantly opposed any Israeli use of retaliatory raids, and we believe Israel must continue to understand it cannot continue to take the law into its own hands. Israel will argue, no doubt, its subjection to considerable provocation from Syria, but for the U.S. to adopt any posture other than strong opposition to these Israeli tactics might well be taken by the Israelis to indicate we were prepared to tolerate similar future incidents and would, in addition, create strong feelings in the Arab world against the U.S. for its abandonment of a well established principle important to maintenance of order in the area.

During the first session of the Security Council, on March 28, we plan to speak briefly. The U.S. Representative would make two major points. First, he would suggest the UNTSO Chief of Staff be recalled to New York for consultation and recommend the Security Council recess for about five days until he returns. This would buy time until the implications of the latest Syrian coup are known, permit tempers to cool, and establish the facts of the case more clearly. Secondly, we would try to pre-empt the inevitable Soviet efforts to curry favor with the Arabs by making a brief general statement which would indicate that we condone neither the Syrian provocations nor the Israeli retaliation, putting heavier stress on the latter than the former.

Our ultimate objective in the Security Council will be to get the Council to express itself strongly in favor of maintenance of the cease fire, to uphold the general armistice agreement, and to support and strengthen the United Nations peacekeeping machinery in the area.

Israel prefers no resolution whatsoever. We consider, however, that this is unrealistic. Since an extreme resolution is likely to be introduced by the USSR or UAR, we have informed our Mission to the United Nations that in order to exercise some control over the outcome, they should embark on consultations with friendly Council members with a view to developing a reasonably balanced resolution which would contribute the maximum to stabilizing the situation in the Near East while doing the minimum damage to our relations with the Israelis and the Arabs. We would plan after consultation with other friendly members of the Council to support, and possibly co-sponsor, a resolution which would contain the following elements: expression of our concern over developments in the area and note of the fact that a cease fire is now in effect; in its operative sections the resolution would remind the government of Israel that the Council has already condemned military action "whether or not undertaken by way of retaliation." Our resolution would then condemn the Israeli attack of March 16 and 17 as a "flagrant violation" of the cease-fire provision of the Council's resolution of July 15, 1948,/4/ and of Israeli obligation under the Charter. The resolution would also hold that hostile actions from Syrian territory on certain specified dates were clear violations of the cease fire and of Articles 1 and 3 of the Armistice. Finally, the resolution would endorse proposals made by General Von Horn for strengthening his hand in keeping the peace. The Chief of Staff would be instructed to report on compliance with the resolution. A copy of our suggested draft resolution is enclosed./5/

/4/Security Council Resolution 54 (1948). For text, see Official Records of the United Nations Security Council, 3rd Year, Resolutions, p. 22.

/5/Attached but not printed. The White House approved the draft resolution that was transmitted to the U.S. Delegation in New York, but later revised. An undated chronology entitled "Evolution of the United States Position in the Security Council's Consideration of the Lake Tiberias Incident" is in Department of State, NEA/IAI Files: Lot 70 D 229, Israel-Syria Lake Tiberias Incident, March 1962.

We considered whether operative paragraphs 2 should "deplore" or "condemn" the Israeli attack of March 16 and 17. It is expected that the minimum Syrian demand will be for a resolution which condemns the attack and that they could obtain a Soviet veto for a resolution which did not do this. We also assume that there will be public and congressional sentiment in the United States against condemning the attack and that the Israelis will make a strong effort to distinguish this incident from earlier ones on grounds of clearly greater Syrian provocations. While initiating consultations on a draft using the word "deplore" would be more acceptable to Jewish opinion in the United States, it would be difficult because of the anticipated pressure from such groups to change our position from "deplore" to "condemn" during the negotiations. Therefore, we feel that we must in the last analysis "condemn" the Israeli attack and have a strong resolution for the following reasons: (1) Condemnation of retaliatory raids is a principle we have hitherto firmly upheld. As noted above, relaxation of our view would be deeply resented by the Arabs and regarded as a positive gain for Israel, and the latter could take our change of position to mean we now tolerate retaliatory raids. (2) If we can secure a resolution from the Council, we can reasonably hope, judging from past experience, that it will have a pacifying effect on the area. The Soviets will almost certainly veto a resolution which does not condemn the Israeli attack and would then be able to pose as the champion of the Arabs. (3) We wish to strengthen UNTSO by action of the Council. (4) The resolution also must make clear our firm disapproval of Syrian action. (5) While we do not propose to overlook Syria's guilt, we recognize that in the present unstable political situation in Syria, a shift in the U.S. position away from condemnation of retaliatory raids might create a difficult situation for our relations with the new Syrian government. (6) The mission of Dr. Joseph Johnson with regard to the Palestine refugees is scheduled to commence within a week or two. We would like to restore as much stability and calm in the area in preparing for his efforts as we can.

The voting picture in the Council will be roughly as follows: An extreme resolution is likely to be supported by the UAR, Ghana, USSR, and Rumania. At the other end of the spectrum, the French will probably support the Israeli position to the maximum, including a preference for no resolution. The UK will find itself in a dilemma like our own. The Latin Americans, China and Ireland will probably tend to follow our lead.

Dean Rusk/6/

/6/Printed from a copy that indicates Ball signed the original for Rusk.

227. Memorandum From the Department of State to the British Embassy

Washington, March 29, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 884A.1901/3-2962. Secret. Drafted by Crawford and cleared by Thomas (S/AE), Ludlow, Talbot, Thacher, and Owen (BNA). According to a note on the source text, Strong handed the memorandum to First Secretary of the British Embassy Denis Speares on April 9.


The Department of State is grateful for the careful consideration given by the Foreign Office to the dangers of a nuclear race among countries of the Near East set out in the Embassy's communication of February 14.
/2/ The Department fully shares the Foreign Office conviction that an adequate safeguards system for nuclear reactor development in that area is essential.

/2/Not found.

2. We concur in the desirability of working for introduction of the IAEA inspection system into the Near East countries and acceptance by Israel would seem to be the logical starting point. However, two significant objections can be foreseen: One is Israel's clear opposition to submission to IAEA controls until these are generally accepted by other nations, and the other is that, under IAEA procedures, both parties to any agreement would probably have to agree to IAEA supervision. The Israel bilateral is with France, and it seems doubtful France would agree to inspection by the IAEA of irradiated elements after their return to French soil. A further problem, recognized by the Foreign Office, is that IAEA inspection, even if accepted, would not commence until the Dimona reactor goes critical, some two years hence, and it is in the intervening period that Arab suspicions and the probability of sharp Arab reactions are likely to be greatest. While we wish ultimately to see all nuclear reactors under IAEA inspection, we doubt Israel's present objections can be overcome regardless of the amount of suasion used, and thus question the value of the sort of immediate, intense effort envisaged by the Foreign Office. However, in forthcoming renegotiation of the United States-Israel atoms-for-peace bilateral,/3/ which covers the reactor at Nabi Rubin, we will make a strong effort to obtain Israel's agreement to transfer to the IAEA of the specific inspection function now allowed to the United States. In any case, we would propose to make clear that the IAEA system is ultimately the one we believe should exercise safeguards functions with regard to peaceful uses of atomic energy in the Near East area and that, as the IAEA system evolves and gains additional adherents, we would expect Israel to accept its supervision.

/3/Documentation on the negotiations is in Department of State, Central File 611.84A45. The agreement for cooperation concerning civil uses of atomic energy, signed at Washington by the United States and Israel on July 12, 1955 (6 UST 2641), was renewed on June 22, 1962 (13 UST 1289). The renewal contained an amendment relating to IAEA inspection.

3. However, ad hoc inspection that will satisfy both ourselves and the world at large as to Israel's actions in the period before the Dimona reactor is completed seems imperative. As to suitable interim, neutral inspectors, we doubt Canada is well qualified since it is closely identified with the West in the IAEA. We think the Swiss, the Swedes, or some other Scandinavian country would be better suited to provide the desired "neutral" confirmation of Israel's peaceful intentions. We have already had some discussion with the Swedes about this and hope to be able to work out something pursuant to Prime Minister Ben-Gurion's May 1961 assurances to President Kennedy.

4. A further complication to the introduction of IAEA controls has been the UAR attitude toward these. It has voted against the IAEA system at every step. With the object of reducing its suspicions and, ultimately, of winning its acceptance of IAEA controls after these have been accepted by Israel, we intend to encourage the fullest possible working relationship between the UAR and the IAEA in other matters.

5. We are asking the West Germans for a report on the status of their present dealings with the UAR. As the Foreign Office is no doubt aware, the Germans have repeatedly assured us that they have no intention of assisting the UAR in reactor development without adequate safeguards.

6. Lacking early arrangement of an open, neutral visit to Dimona, the United States is prepared to consider another secret visit to Dimona, roughly on the one-year anniversary of our last visit in May 1961.

7. We will welcome continued close consultation with the United Kingdom on all aspects of this issue. We will keep the Embassy in Washington informed of our progress and of the reply we receive from the Germans to the approach described in (5).

228. Memorandum From the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Secretary of Defense McNamara


Washington, March 29, 1962.

/1/Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OSD Files: FRC 66 A 3542, Iran 091.112(TS) 21 Mar 62. Top Secret.

Visit of the Shah of Iran 10-17 April 1962 (U)

1. Reference is made to a memorandum from the Assistant Secretary of Defense (ISA), dated 21 March 1962,/2/ subject as above.

/2/Not printed.

2. The papers prepared in response to the reference memorandum are attached.

For the Joint Chiefs of Staff:

Curtis E. LeMay
Acting Chairman
Joint Chiefs of Staff

Attachment 1

/3/Secret. Prepared by Captain J.P. Fox, USN, Defense Intelligence Agency.


An Assessment of the Military Threat to Iran


A precarious political situation as well as an unstable economic situation, both operating under the prevailing uneasy calm which presently pervades the Iranian scene, are far more of a threat to Iran than any present military threat.

A military threat to Iran stems only from Soviet capabilities in the form of formidable ground, sea and air forces deployed behind the contiguous border with Iran. While a limited conflict could be instigated by the Soviets through the medium of Iraq and Afghanistan, this threat is not considered an immediate one and would only develop if direct and extensive Soviet support would be provided to them. This is considered to have little likelihood of materializing within the next few years.

The Iranian army could not contain or seriously delay a major Soviet attack. While the USSR may view Iran as an especially promising and vulnerable target, it believes that events are moving toward an internal revolutionary explosion which will result in the overthrow of the Shah's regime by nationalist, anti-Western forces who would sever Iranian ties with the West. Soviet propaganda has endeavored to hasten these developments by seeking to discredit the Shah and his government. While Iran is the most vulnerable target for a Soviet attempt to undermine CENTO, we believe that Soviet policy toward Iran and CENTO will continue along the same non-military lines described above. Barring a domestic upheaval which offered the Soviets new opportunities for subversion and expansion of their political influence or a global war, we do not foresee any dramatic Soviet military moves against Iran over the next four or five years.

Iraq and Afghanistan have received extensive military and economic support from the Soviets and are almost solely dependent on the USSR for a wide range of equipment and supply for their armed forces as well as instruction in the use of the new equipment. Over a period of time the USSR military aid and training is certain to have an important influence on their internal as well as foreign policy. For the present, however, it appears that Soviet aid has been delivered to these countries for political effect and has not substantially increased the military capability of their Armed Forces which are concerned primarily with internal security and will be for the foreseeable future. They do not have the trained manpower, facilities, maintenance, and supply ability to properly employ the equipment over a sustained period. Thus while their military capabilities are certain to increase gradually during the next few years provided Soviet assistance continues, neither Iraq nor Afghanistan have a present capability for offensive operations against Iran.

The military assistance effort already planned by the U.S. will enable Iran to stay ahead of Iraq and Afghanistan in its military capabilities. In spite of the steady efforts which the U.S. has made to modernize the Iranian Army and increase its effectiveness, its capabilities continue to be limited. Its main deficiencies are its excessive size, the low level of general education and technical aptitude, inept leadership, a cumbersome system of command, supply and administration, inadequate transportation and communication facilities, and a lack of combat experience. Despite the attention that has been lavished on the military by the Shah whose rule rests primarily on their loyalty, the army has not acquired great prestige in the eyes of the Iranian people both in and out of government, and a growing number of the younger officers have the discontent of the civilian middle class from which they come. In order to reduce the possibility that the army could become a threat to his position, the Shah has encouraged factionalism, competing intelligence services and conflicting chains of command. To a considerable degree, the military hierarchy is corrupt, wasteful and inefficient. The capabilities of the Armed Forces are generally low, although a slow, steady improvement has been made.

We believe that in spite of the foregoing U.S. assessment of the poor capability of the Iranian Armed Forces, that Iran does have the capability to defend against any purely Iraqi or Afghan aggression but in the foreseeable future will not have any significant capability against Soviet military action.

Attachment 2

March 26, 1962.

/4/Top Secret. Prepared by Colonel E.R. White, USA, International Policy Branch, J-5.


US Strategic Concept, Defense of the Middle East

Background--See Enclosure.

Discussion--Two major considerations influence the US strategic concept for the defense of the Middle East: First, the unusually formidable terrain obstacles to Soviet over-land incursion to the area and, second, the unquestionable Soviet recognition of the United States and Free World vital interests in the area.

Consideration of the above factors, together with Soviet military inaction in the area over the past several years impels the United States to the view that Soviet military attack of the Middle East area is, first, unlikely in the near future, and, secondly, would under any circumstances occur in conjunction with aggression in other world areas.

The United States places reliance upon the Armed Forces of Iran and its other CENTO Allies to execute effective ground delaying action in areas adjacent to the Soviet borders.

Certain measures of limited nonnuclear response to Soviet attack on Iran can be taken by US forces to counter limited Soviet intervention and probing aggression. Inadequacies of road and rail facilities in Iran limit commitment of US conventional forces to two Army Divisions and Marine and US Air Force Combat elements to Northern Iran. By extensive use of US Air Transport capabilities, about two additional battle groups could be supported.

Commitment of US forces in sufficient time to counter a Soviet advance into Iran requires use of the only two airborne divisions presently in the US Strategic Reserve and all of the airlift capability including the Civil Reserve Air Fleet, resulting in a serious dilution of the capability to respond to other contingencies.

The ability to commit conventional forces as indicated above is based upon the assumption that authorization by the President for the use of nuclear weapons will be given as required to achieve US objectives in the area, should the Soviets persist in spite of US actions.

Should this conventional response on the part of the United States, Iran, and their Allies prove to be insufficient to turn back a Soviet invasion, the United States and her CENTO Allies are capable of a limited nuclear action consisting primarily of interdiction of Soviet routes of advance through the difficult terrain in the border areas and nuclear attack of Soviet airfields which are directly supporting their operations. CENTO plans for such action exist.

Finally, the United States has the option of fully escalating the defense to general nuclear war.



1. US policy toward Iran defers any decisions on whether or how the United States would react militarily to a Soviet attack on Iran; therefore, major policy decisions are required should it be determined desirable for the United States to apply measured force against the Soviets in Iran.

2. The current general war plan for the Middle East area does not envisage the deployment of US combat forces to the area at least initially. Primary reliance for defense of the area against Soviet attack is placed on indigenous forces. The area would accrue benefits through the Allied strategic offensive.

3. Current US plans do not provide forces for a limited war with the Soviets in Iran.

4. Current contingency plans for operations short of general war in support of Iran are designed to assist in restoration of law and order resulting from internal disorder which may include communist volunteers. If US and Soviet forces were to become engaged, these plans assume that general war plans would be invoked. The forces earmarked for contingency operations short of general war consist of two battle groups, five fighter squadrons, 1/3 Marine Division/wing team, plus naval and air transports.

5. The planned movement of units by air requires the use of staging bases in Turkey. Routes to Teheran and Hamadan are within range of Russian air elements in the Azerbaijan area. Therefore, if the US deployment into Iran takes place after overt Soviet involvement in Iran, the movement by air over these planned routes is no longer feasible, and new air routes requiring overflight of Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan and Iraq would be required.

6. Any commitment of US forces in Iran against overt Soviet involvement must be preceded by a decision to employ whatever degree of force is required to achieve US objectives in the area and to preserve the integrity of US forces, to include the use of nuclear weapons or initiation of general war if the Soviets persist in spite of US actions.

Attachment 3

March 27, 1962.

/5/Top Secret. No drafting information appears on the source text.


US Global Defense Posture in Support of Iran

Discussion--The following considerations pertain to the support which Iran obtains from the over-all US defense posture:

US policy with regard to the Middle East is to hold as far forward as possible of the Northernmost boundary of the CENTO countries. This includes Iran, which has a common frontier with the USSR.

The only US forces in the vicinity of Iran are 2 Destroyers and 1 AVP, under the control of CINCNELM and operating in the Persian Gulf, the Red and Arabian Seas.

Two US Tactical Fighter Sqs in Turkey are earmarked for NATO use; however, it is conceivable that they could be employed in Iran as directed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The US 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean, although committed to NATO, could be considered as a potential force for use in reinforcing Iran, particularly the air-transportable elements of the Marine BLT normally embarked.

The US 7th Fleet in the Pacific, although committed to the PACOM area, could also be considered a potential for use in support of contingencies in Iran.

The nearest Army forces which could be sent to reinforce Iranian forces are 2 Airborne Battle Groups in Europe. These appear in CINCNELM plans for the Middle East.

The over-all US defense posture has increased to a considerable degree during the past year as a result of Presidential determination to increase the US conventional capability. With activation of USSTRICOM, a US unified command has been established which will contribute a great deal to US world-wide strength in increasing capability to react rapidly to cope with communist-inspired emergencies. Recent exercises in which US troops were lifted to Europe from Ft. Lewis, Washington, in 10 hours have pointed up the tremendous strides which have been made in speeding up troop airlift through the use of jet transport.

Attachment 4

March 27, 1962.

/6/Secret. No drafting information appears on the source text.


The Military Assistance Program for Iran

Discussion--Objectives for and Role of Iranian Armed Forces--The objectives of MAP for Iran are a defense posture capable of maintaining internal security, contributing to deterrence of limited war, protection of Middle East LOC within or contiguous to Iran, participating in CENTO, and effecting maximum delay in event of Soviet attack. The role of the Iranian Armed Forces is to meet these objectives. To this end, military assistance in the amount of $577,888,000 was provided Iran by the US during FY 1951-62 and $63,450,000 in military assistance is proposed for Iran in FY 1963.

MAP Accomplishments--Since MAP for Iran commenced in 1950, the Iranian Army has advanced from a poorly trained, ill equipped force of 84,000 to an Army of almost 200,000 men with more modern equipment and an improved combat capability. The Iranian Navy, which became a separate service in 1955, has shown slow but continuous improvement in training and quality of personnel. The Iranian Air Force has measurably improved its organization, training and operational capability. The Gendarmerie has improved from a poorly trained, organized and equipped unit to a force capable of performing its mission acceptably.

Deficiencies--The Army lacks mobility and requisite communications and logistic capabilities. The Navy's capability, due to lack of modern ships, is limited to a minimum contribution to protection of LOC in the Persian Gulf. The Air Force lacks modern high performance transport and fighter aircraft. The Armed Forces lack an air defense capability.

Estimate of Iranian Military Capabilities--With MAP assistance, recommended by SecDef to the NSC on 18 January 1962, the Iranian Armed Forces will become increasingly able to maintain internal security; can defend successfully against a limited war attack by either Iraq or Afghanistan; can probably withstand a coordinated attack by those two countries; but without help, cannot defend successfully against a Soviet attack or an Iraqi-Afghan attack covertly supported by the USSR. Iran's capability to meet a Soviet attack as part of a general war offensive would be limited to minimum defense by successive delaying actions. Iranian capability to maintain and operate complex equipment is limited. However, the Iranian Armed Forces at a level of 150,000 men, with US assistance and advice, can operate and maintain effectively the equipment necessary to meet current JCS force objectives.

FY 1962-67 Military Assistance Plan for Iran--The Administrator, AID, has recommended to the President a FY 1962-1967 Military Assistance Plan for Iran at a cost not to exceed $330 million which includes about $170 million for modernization of Iranian Armed Forces at a strength reduced from 200,000 men to 150,000 men. A table extracted from the final Steering Group Report, which summarizes FY 1962-67 MA Plans for Iran recommended by USCINCEUR, the US Ambassador to Iran and the Steering Group, is attached./7/

/7/Not printed.

229. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Talbot) to Secretary of State Rusk

Washington, March 30, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/3-3062. Confidential. Drafted by Barrow (NEA/NE) and concurred in by Hewitt (L/NEA). The memorandum did not reach Secretary Rusk. It was directed through S/S and M to the Secretary and evidently was withdrawn after McGhee had seen the document, initialed its first page, and initialed the approved line at the end of the memorandum. The document is also initialed by Deputy Executive Secretary Edward S. Little. McGhee's initials on the approved line have been crossed out, and a handwritten inscription reads: "not sent." The actions recommended in this document were, however, eventually approved. See Document 236.

Recognition of the Army Takeover in the Syrian Arab Republic


On March 27-28 the Army in Syria ousted the President, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet, dissolved the Parliament, and is presently governing the country with the assistance of senior civil servants who are operating the various Ministries as Acting Ministers. Reports from our Embassy in Damascus indicate that the main motivation for the Army takeover was dissatisfaction with various policies and actions of the civilian authorities, that it may reflect increased pressure for a socialist policy within the Army, and may partially have been inspired by fear that the Government of President Qudsi had gone too far in seeking rapprochement with Iraq. Whereas some of the Army's earlier communiqués suggest that an attempt would be made to conciliate the U.A.R., it seems clear that the ring leaders of the present Army movement are, with minor exceptions, the same officers who carried out the September 28 revolution. It has been emphasized by the regime and by the Acting Foreign Minister in a conversation with our Ambassador that this government is a "continuation of the 28th of September revolution and . . . a purely internal measure to correct certain internal conditions. . . ."

You may recall that at the time we recognized the Syrian Arab Republic on October 10, 1961, the situation was as follows: The Supreme Arab Revolutionary Command, i.e. roughly the same group of officers conducting the present movement, had installed a civilian provisional government headed by Prime Minister and Acting Chief of State Mahmun Kuzbari, which governed pending the holding of elections for a Constituent Assembly.

The Assembly was later duly elected, under terms of an electoral law which had existed prior to Syrian union with Egypt, and the Assembly in turn elected Nazim al-Qudsi as President, and the Army declared it had "returned to its barracks" and was turning the reins of government over to civilian authorities. However, at the time of the Army takeover on March 27-28, the Assembly had not drafted or promulgated a permanent constitution.

It should be noted that the Army authorities issued an official statement on March 28 which, inter alia, asserted that "the Command will adopt the policy of positive neutrality and non-alignment, will safeguard international charters, will respect (its) agreements and will adhere to the principles of the United Nations." Further, our Ambassador was summoned by the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces on March 28 and was assured that the Army takeover was an internal matter and that there would be no change in Syrian foreign policy.

While the reassumption by the Army of power on March 27-28 is claimed by the Army regime to be a continuation of the 28th of September revolution, there has in fact been a major change in the character of the government which presents a question as to the recognition of the new regime. However, on the assumption that we desire to recognize and to continue relations with the new regime, this can be done without expressly raising the question of recognition. Recognition of a new government need not be expressly stated but may be implied from continuance of normal contacts and relations with the new regime.

We believe it would be desirable that we have authority to authorize Ambassador Knight to inform the Acting Syrian Foreign Minister early in the week of April 1 that we intend to continue business as usual, and that we wish the Syrian Government and people every success. Prior to taking this action we would hope to coordinate with the United Kingdom with a view to its taking a parallel course.

We might also authorize Ambassador Knight at that time to assure the new government that we intend to carry on with present economic assistance programs and specifically with a loan agreement signed on March 27 designed to support the IMF-approved Syrian stabilization program.

We believe prompt action along these lines will provide a favorable basis for initiating our relations with the new government and accordingly request your approval.


That you authorize us to inform Ambassador Knight early next week to inform the Syrian authorities (a) that we intend to continue doing business as usual, (b) that we intend to carry on with existing economic assistance commitments, including the stabilization loan, and (c) that we wish the Syrian Government and people every success.

230. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rusk to President Kennedy

Washington, March 31, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 811.0086B/3-3162. Secret. Attached to a March 31 memorandum from Talbot to Secretary Rusk recommending that the Secretary sign the memorandum printed here. The memorandum from Rusk to Kennedy was not sent to the White House. An April 17 memorandum from Bowles to Talbot indicates that it was still under discussion as of that date. (Ibid., 811.0086B/4-1762; see Supplement, the compilation on the United Arab Republic) The two enclosures to the memorandum printed here were, however, transmitted to the White House and are in the Kennedy Library, President's Office Files, Countries, United Arab Republic, Security--1962. The White House copy of Mason's report does not contain the summary in the enclosure printed below.

Economic Action Program for the United Arab Republic

My memorandum of January 10, 1962

/2/Document 159.

Ambassador Bowles and Dr. Mason, whose visits formed part of our proposed action program in the United Arab Republic, have now prepared reports and recommendations (enclosed for convenience in reference)./3/ Both agree that an effort to establish a more affirmative relationship is desirable, the degree of such effort to depend upon present and future U.A.R. cooperation and performance. The following are the main lines of economic action which emerge from the Bowles and Mason written and oral reports.

/3/The first enclosure is Dr. Mason's undated report. The report's summary is printed below. For the body of the report, see Supplement, the compilation on the United Arab Republic. The second enclosure is airgram A-74 from Addis Ababa, Document 195.

1. The United States should undertake a multi-year Public Law 480 Agreement: There is unanimous agreement that this is a worthwhile step. We are already committed to holding preparatory discussions with the U.A.R. We are preparing instructions for Embassy Cairo to carry this matter forward with U.A.R. officials.

2. The United States should consider participation in an International Monetary Fund stabilization program: The two provisos which Dr. Mason attached to this proposal in discussions with the U.A.R. are (a) that the U.A.R. meet IMF terms and conditions; and (b) that other Western nations such as the United Kingdom, Italy, West Germany and Japan participate. U.A.R. drawings from the IMF could amount to $30 million but substantial additional funds would have to be provided by the U.S. and other countries to support a total program. It would be difficult for the U.S. to provide funds prior to Fiscal Year 1963.

The initiative on this matter is lodged with the U.A.R. which has yet to satisfy a number of IMF conditions for an agreement. Solving the present balance of payments crisis is probably a prerequisite to successful long-term development. We are investigating with AID the possibility of U.S. and other international assistance if and when the U.A.R. meets IMF conditions.

3. The U.S. should expand the technical assistance program. Dr. Mason has recommended that the technical assistance program be expanded and has suggested that agricultural extension and land reclamation activities might be fields in which American technicians could effectively be utilized. Conversely, he feels there is no need or desire for high-level planners since the U.A.R. has persons of considerable competence in this field. Ambassador Bowles has emphasized aid to the rural areas, referring specifically to new communities which will be created as the U.A.R.'s cultivated lands are increased through the Aswan Dam and other developments.

AID already has a staff of more than thirty technicians and at the present time has doubts about the advisability of any large increase in the technical assistance program. Moreover, in light of past experience and in view of the high quality of the U.A.R. agriculturists, AID is not sanguine that a rapid increase in agricultural activities is feasible or desirable. We will continue our discussions with AID as to the scope of our technical assistance in the U.A.R.

4. The U.S. should increase development lending: Dr. Mason believes that the AID projected level of $33 million development lending for FY-63 can be well utilized and might be moderately increased. AID has this question under review. Much will depend upon whether the U.A.R. is able to present suitably-documented projects fulfilling AID criteria.

Ambassador Bowles was informed in Cairo of a possible U.A.R. request for a loan of $125 million to purchase machinery for industrial development. We lack details, but given the magnitude of the amount stated and the fact that such a project would not appear to fulfill AID criteria we are not inclined to encourage the U.A.R. to pursue the matter further. The matter was not treated in Dr. Mason's report.

5. The U.S. should endeavor to identify and assist in a worthwhile land reclamation project: Dr. Mason believes the U.A.R.'s Western Desert project for utilization of underground water, to which some U.S. technical assistance has already been rendered, offers a possibility for developing land less expensively than the Aswan Dam development. Dr. Mason believes we might well consider assisting in the implementation of this or some other U.A.R. land reclamation project of long-term significance. Our aid to such a project would allow the U.S. to be identified with a project having widespread public impact.

The Western Desert project is still in a pilot stage and the long-term availability of replenishable water has not yet been completely proven. We agree, however, that this project may become increasingly attractive and we will keep the matter under review. AID is also doing considerable work on the EARIS project which includes land reclamation and resettlement of farmers on reclaimed land. We are considering the relationship of this work to developments in the area to be reclaimed as a result of the Aswan Dam project.

6. At a later stage the U.S. might consider whether the consortium approach to long-term development is feasible: Dr. Mason indicated action with respect to a development consortium is not presently desirable but might be a future consideration if a step-by-step evolution of U.S.-U.A.R. relations progresses favorably and if U.A.R. economic prospects continue to be encouraging.

Whereas the above recommended lines of action pose some difficulties in implementation, we believe that in general they represent a sober, balanced approach to the situation and offer a sound basis on which to proceed. If you concur the Department will incorporate them in its policy directives for the U.A.R. and proceed toward implementation. We will keep you informed of the progress of our discussions with AID and other interested agencies on these matters.

Dean Rusk/4/

/4/Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.


/5/Confidential. Drafted by Mason. Additional documentation concerning Mason's mission to the United Arab Republic, including memoranda of conversations and telegraphic reports, is in Department of State, Central File 886B.00.



My visit, following on the heels of visits by Messrs. Bowles and McGovern, has probably created certain expectations in the UAR.

The most immediately pressing economic problem is a balance of payments difficulty arising principally from a serious crop failure last year. Shortage of foreign exchange has already forced a slowing down of development expenditures. If negotiations with the International Monetary Fund for a stabilization arrangement are successful, certain drawing rights on the Fund will become available, but these will not be large enough to relieve the difficulty without a further sharp cutback in the development program. It will certainly be expected that the U.S., presumably with others, will participate in any stabilization arrangement that is negotiated. I did not raise this question but the question was raised with me and I limited myself to the remark that no doubt the U.S. would want to be assured that arrangements satisfactory to the I.M.F. were negotiated and that other countries with important trade relations with the UAR would be willing to participate.

Information necessary to an assessment of development progress was made available and the cooperation of UAR officials was quite satisfactory. During the fiscal year 1960-61 the real national income of the UAR increased by 5.8 percent. The current year, as a result of the crop failure, will probably show only a slight increase. There seems sufficient reason to believe, barring further crop failures, and assuming foreign loans and grants at about the current rate, that the UAR can support a growth rate of four to six percent per annum, which, though short of the planned rate, is substantial. The large-scale nationalization and sequestration of last summer and fall have brought management difficulties, but they are not sufficiently serious, in my judgment, to modify this estimate. There is no real doubt in my mind that the UAR is seriously concerned with economic development and that the prospects of sustaining a satisfactory rate of growth are favorable.

The implications for U.S. economic policy are, in my view, as follows:

1. A continuation of the PL 480 program at something like the current level is essential if the UAR is to have sufficient foreign exchange to meet its reasonable development requirements. Effective planning to meet these requirements would be greatly facilitated by a multi-year program on which, I understand, there have been initial discussions.

2. DLF loans during the current year have amounted to $17 million. The planning figure now current in AID for loans to the UAR is $30 million a year. In my opinion a figure of this magnitude, or perhaps a little larger is appropriate.

3. The present small figure of $2-1/2 million for technical assistance could appropriately be doubled. There is no shortage of useful projects.

4. The development of effective economic cooperation with the UAR should proceed on a step-by-step basis with a testing at every step of the willingness to honor obligations and provide necessary information.

231. Memorandum for the Record

Washington, April 2, 1962.

/1/Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Iran, Subjects: Shah Visit. Secret. Drafted by Komer.

First Meeting with President on Shah's Visit, 30 March 1962/2/

/2/Komer outlined his proposed agenda for this meeting in a March 28 memorandum to Bundy. (Ibid., Meetings and Memoranda Series, Staff Memoranda, Robert W. Komer)

The President, Secretary Rusk, Mr. McGhee, Mr. Rostow, Mr. Talbot, Secretary McNamara, General LeMay, W. P. Bundy, Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Gaud, Mr. Bundy, Ambassador Bowles, Mr. Komer

It was agreed that an effort would be made to arrange a joint session of Congress to hear the Shah, even if Congressional attendance proved sparse. The Shah seemed insistent, particularly since Ayub had appeared before Congress, Secretary Rusk would call Senator Mansfield. The President would tell the Shah to discuss MAP with McNamara.

The President agreed that Secretary McNamara should give the Shah the highlights of our proposed MAP package. This was better than the President having to argue the case. It was agreed that the President would talk in general terms about our desire to modernize the Iranian forces. Secretary McNamara pointed out that we can accelerate MAP deliveries; this, plus the $330 million package should increase the apparent flow by 50-100% which would look very good to the Iranians.

The President desired a memo on things we were doing or planned to do for Iran that had not been done before, particularly MAP items.

Secretary McNamara suggested that the President tell the Shah we would send a small military planning mission (to be part of the MAAG) to assist the Iranians in planning more effectively for their own defense. Secretary McNamara suggested that he could avoid describing one or two key MAP items during his discussion with the Shah, e.g., the C-130s; then the President could tell the Shah about these at the second meeting as an additional concession.

The President desired that we take a look at the sufficiencies of our commitments to Iran to come to its defense in event of attack. Secretary Rusk hoped that we could go so far as to say we would send in one or two divisions in event of limited attack. It was agreed that this should be explored.


/3/Printed from a copy that bears these typed initials.

232. Telegram From the Embassy in Jordan to the Department of State

Amman, April 2, 1962, 1 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-262. Confidential; Niact. Received at 2:45 p.m. and relayed to CIA, OSD, Army, Navy, and Air Force. Repeated to Damascus, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Cairo, London, Beirut, Baghdad, and Ankara.

463. Pass Defense. Reference: Embtel 462./2/ Prime Minister called me to his office 0900 April 2. Said situation in Syria had become far more serious than at time my conversation with King Hussein yesterday afternoon (reference telegram), and that he now convinced that issue was whether or not Nasser power to be restored there.

/2/In telegram 462 from Amman, April 1, Macomber reported that King Hussein had summoned him to express his concern over reports of serious disturbances in the cities of Aleppo, Homs, and Hama in Syria, reportedly connected with efforts to restore Nasser's authority over Syria. Hussein also pointed to reports of Israeli and UAR troop movements. (Ibid., 783.00/4-162)

I asked what new information he had which would support this conclusion. Prime Minister said that trouble in Syria had now spread as far south as Dera where he just received information UAR flag now flying. He cited other alleged reports. These did not seem convincing to me and when I pointed out he said real basis for his conclusion was "Arab intuition". He then repeated thesis that King Hussein had previously argued with me many times, i.e. that if Nasserism regains control of Syria, moderate progressive capitalistic governments such as in Jordan, doomed in this part of Arab world. He said that in view of this Jordan would prefer face showdown in Syria rather than face issue later on when defeat inevitable.

When I questioned thesis that Jordan demise inevitable if Nasser regained control of Syria, Prime Minister held to his position but added that even if this not the case Nasser's reappearance in Syria would mean re-establishment of iron-fist totalitarian control not only in Syria area but in Jordanian area as well. Re latter said if UAR regained control of Syria, Jordan would have to take extreme internal security measures which in effect would mean establishment of rigid conservative military dictatorship here which would be completely incompatible with progressive objectives he and his government now pursuing in Jordan.

Prime Minister next said that while Nasser threat in Syria very great, he believed that anti-UAR forces could still prevail provided prompt action taken and he made it clear that if necessary Jordanians prepared send troops to Syria to bolster anti-UAR forces.

I repeated all arguments cited reference telegram. I then made added strong argument against Jordan taking precipitous action based on Arab "intuition" and noted that in fact GOJ had no more information this morning than it had yesterday and actual situation in Syria remained very unclear. Said that any Jordanian troop movement even within its own borders could greatly strengthen propaganda hand of Nasser and undercut GOJ objectives in Syria.

Prime Minister said that if Jordan Arab Army (JAA) troops moved they would not stop at border but would keep going until they reached Damascus. At same time, GOJ would make clear that purpose of troop movement to Syria would be to restore recently deposed civilian government and would withdraw immediately following a plebiscite which would give Syrians opportunity free choice type of government and alignment they desired. If Syrian people freely chose associate with Nasser, GOJ would regret this but would not oppose it. On other hand, GOJ could not tolerate Syrians being brought back forcefully and against the majority will into UAR.

I pointed out discrepancy between numbers of Jordanian and Syrian troops and suggested Jordan troops would be swallowed up before they could carry out this objective. Prime Minister disagreed saying that if JAA moved quickly and decisively they would be supported by elements Syrian army dedicated to same objectives.

I noted that if Jordan troops entered Syria, Iraqi troops might also come in. Prime Minister said that would not create problem as JAA would not fight Iraqis and both could withdraw after plebiscite and restoration of civilian government. I said I thought this great over simplification of problem and that if Jordan troops went across border they would be stepping into morass from which it would be most difficult extricate themselves.

After further discussion, Prime Minister stressed that he had not yet reached firm conclusion that it would be necessary send Jordanian troops to Syria and that he not yet prepared to make such a recommendation until situation further clarified. Said, however, that if GOJ decided to move would move very quickly and Jordanian troops might be in Damascus by tomorrow morning. I said I thought this not only unwise but impossible.

Prime Minister then made two specific requests. First, he asked that USG make immediate démarche to Nasser urging that he stay out of Syrian situation. Second, he requested that USG, through its Embassy in Damascus, seek put backbone in military junta by assuring it of USG support against "minority" forces seeking restore Nasser control over Syria. At same time, suggested USG apply pressure on junta to make its peace with previous civilian government so they could work together against pro-UAR elements. (After leaving Prime Minister's office, and while dictating this telegram, Prime Minister telephoned me adding further request that US Embassy in Damascus pass word to Zahr ad-Din that JAA stood ready to be of assistance if he should so request.)

Conversation concluded with my reiterating strong advice that GOJ remain calm and not take foolish or precipitous action. I emphasized again that neither GOJ, nor anyone else at moment, had any firm information re higher nature, or degree of seriousness, current Syrian situation. Prime Minister replied he still not ready recommend any major action unless further developments within Syria made this absolutely essential and said he would keep in touch with me.

Comment: While I believe GOJ is more concerned re Syrian situation this morning than yesterday, I conclude that much of Prime Minister's talk was designed to emphasize to USG gravity GOJ attaches to situation. Absence of JAA troop movement and low-key nature of military alert remains as reported reftel. I am, nevertheless, concerned that combination of Jordan fear of UAR and prevalence of unsubstantiated but alarming rumors, could lead to precipitous action on part of JAA particularly if GOJ authorities conclude that moment had been reached when they must act or UAR triumph in Syria will be assured.

Embassy is keeping in close touch with situation and will continue to counsel restraint. I will be seeing King later in day.

With regard Prime Minister's first two requests, I defer to Department and my colleagues in Damascus and Cairo as to whether representations along these lines would serve any useful purpose. With regard to his third (telephone) request, assume Department will not wish USG channels be used for this type communication. However, believe GOJ will seek use other channels including its own to get this message through to Zahr ad-Din.


233. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Jordan

Washington, April 2, 1962, 7:09 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-263. Confidential; Niact. Drafted by Walstrom (NEA/NE), cleared by Barrow and Strong, and approved by Talbot. Repeated to Damascus, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Cairo, London, Beirut, Baghdad, and Ankara.

336. Embtel 463./2/ Your statements to King and PriMin accurately represent Department's thinking. Suggest at next reiteration these views you emphasize you acting under instructions. If you believe desirable, you may add Jordanian intervention likely lead to tragic consequence for Jordan. U.S. unwilling support such Jordanian action and would find it necessary make public disavowal.

/2/Document 232.

Although we recognize reasons PriMin regards developments as potential threat to Jordan, we have no evidence overt external intervention involved or contemplated. We consider Syrian situation as internal matter to be resolved by Syrians themselves. We cannot agree re-emergence Nasser control or influence in Syria would presage Jordan's demise.

U.S. desires exert whatever calming influence possible in situation, but unwilling become otherwise involved as requested by PriMin.


234. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Jordan

Washington, April 3, 1962, 6:19 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-362. Confidential; Niact. Drafted by Walstrom, cleared by Barrow, and approved by Talbot. Repeated to Damascus, Cairo, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, London, Beirut, Baghdad, and Ankara.

340. Embtel 466./2/ While latest unofficial reports from Syria indicate accord being worked out between disputants on basis maintenance Syria's identity, believe Jordanians deluding themselves if they feel Nasser would be deterred from action in Syria by Jordanian threats. In fact overt Jordanian involvement in Syria could have effect of crystallizing Syrian antagonism toward Jordan and result in increased swing toward support for UAR. Similarly Jordanian intervention might well trigger more active UAR role in Syrian situation and in Jordan against present regime. As you deem appropriate you should continue urge Jordanians refrain from involvement under any circumstances, stating USG would regard such actions as serious error of judgment which could have only tragic consequences for Jordan. No indications whatsoever of current UAR intention military intervention Syria.

/2/Telegram 466 from Amman, April 3, reported that during a conversation with Prime Minister Wasfi Tell, Macomber had reiterated points made previously against Jordanian involvement in Syrian affairs. (Ibid.)

FYI. Deptel 336./3/ Inadvisable speak to Nasser as desired by Jordanians; in UAR eyes could only imply indirect threat by U.S. End FYI./4/

/3/Document 233.

/4/In telegram 470 from Amman, April 4, Macomber objected to the implication in this telegram that Jordan believed its threats could deter Nasser from action in Syria. Macomber advised that Jordan had not threatened the Egyptians nor anyone else but had calmly and privately stated conditions under which it would feel compelled to intervene in Syria. The Ambassador also assured the Department that while "GOJ sincerely believes that if Nasser allowed restore and maintain by force his authority over Syria, existence of current Jordanian regime doomed along with cause of moderate, progressive, free enterprise and Western oriented governments in this part of Arab world." The Jordanian Government wished to avoid involvement in Syrian affairs, as it would lead to a break with the United Kingdom and the United States. (Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-462)


235. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Syria

Washington, April 4, 1962, 9:33 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-362. Secret; Priority. Drafted by Dickman and Strong and approved by Talbot. Repeated to Amman, Ankara, Baghdad, Cairo, Jidda, Beirut, London, Paris, Rome, and Aleppo.

435. Embtel 641./2/ Department approves your line with Ustuwani.

/2/Knight reported in telegram 641 from Damascus, April 3, that Ustuwani, using the title Secretary General rather than Foreign Minister, had called him in to warn that "any military intervention whatsoever in Syria would constitute interference in Syria internal affairs and would be regarded by Syrian authorities as aggression." Knight gathered that this warning sprung from a widely held belief among Syria's leaders that the United States favored a return of Syria to Egyptian rule. Knight affirmed that U.S. policy was strictly one of non-interference in Syria's internal affairs and of non-interference in Egyptian affairs either for or against Nasser. Moreover, Syrian authorities could be certain that the United States did not in any way support or would support any action by Nasser to regain control of Syria. (Ibid.)

We have noted your concern at Syrian belief US favoring return Syria to UAR rule and have considered whether anything useful could be said publicly here. Have decided that, as usually case, potential dangers outweigh possible benefits. Since Syrian belief reported especially strong in Aleppo where pro-UAR sentiment widespread, we wonder whether UAR may have spread story. If Syrian concern persists, suggest you use next opportunity try smoke out origin SARG fears. As you and staff endeavor combat Syrian misapprehensions suggest care be exerted avoid creating impression you are in fact employing anti-UAR line.

In our view, direction Syria goes in next year or two will be determined principally by forces local to Near East. Our means for exerting decisive influence are inadequate and we believe best to avoid actions putting us in middle without achieving useful results.


236. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Syria

Washington, April 5, 1962, 8:41 p.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 783.00/4-562. Secret; Priority. Drafted by Barrow; cleared by Strong, Hewitt, McGhee, Veliotes, Moser (E), Ide and Anderson (AID), Welk (ExImBank) informed, and Talbot; and approved by Ball. Repeated to Amman, Ankara, Baghdad, Beirut, Bonn, Cairo, Jidda, London, Paris, Rome, Tel Aviv, Kuwait, and Taiz.

438. Provided and at such time as Qudsi reinstated as President and reconstitution of government being undertaken, and provided you convinced General Command has de facto control of Syria and SARG prepared adhere to its international obligations, you authorized in your discretion and at time you deem most appropriate, to resume normal relations with SARG. In name of USG you may assure SARG of our every good wish for success Syrian Government and people. You might at same time state USG will abide by existing economic assistance commitments, and is prepared discuss completion of US component stabilization package under same conditions as agreed upon earlier.

If asked whether this constitutes recognition, you may state in our opinion formal act of recognition not required unless SARG requests it.

FYI: We hope prompt action along these lines might help counteract SARG erroneous impression USG favors UAR control of Syria and establish favorable basis US relations new government. End FYI.

Embassy London may inform FonOff re foregoing instructions.


237. Memorandum of Conversation

Washington, April 6, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 325.84/4-662. Confidential; Limit Distribution. Drafted by Crawford on April 11.

PCC Refugee Initiative

Dr. Joseph E. Johnson, Special Representative, Palestine Conciliation Commission
Mr. Sherrington Moe, Senior Advisor to the Special Representative
IO/UNP--Stephen Palmer, Jr.
NEA/NE--William R. Crawford, Jr.

1. Dr. Johnson's Plans for the "Second Round"; Working Paper V:

It was agreed that consultations with Dr. Johnson and Mr. Moe over the past two months have served a useful purpose in refining possible approaches to the problem of winning Arab host government and Israel agreement on the movement, in both directions, of a limited number of refugees in a limited period. This appears the only practical way to break down the psychological and political obstacles that have precluded basic progress for thirteen years. Working Paper V (attached for selected posts)/2/ represents in most respects a consensus of Dr. Johnson and his staff, of the Department working group, and of valuable suggestions received from the field. (One or two Department exceptions to Working Paper V were reserved for discussion later in the meeting.)

/2/Not attached to the source text. A copy, dated April 2, is ibid., NEA/IAI Files: Lot 70 D 229, Refugees--PCC Basic Documents. For text, see Supplement, the Arab-Israeli dispute.

Dr. Johnson indicated his intention not to present a "present proposal" during his coming visit to the Near East. His ideas are crystallized to date only in regard to initial discussion with the Israelis. Dr. Johnson said his approach would include the following elements: (a) a statement that, as a UN official, he cannot force compliance with General Assembly resolutions which are in the nature of recommendations, and that he must try to define possibilities for agreement within the framework of the sovereign concerns of Israel and the Arab states; (b) the statement that what is under discussion is initial movement of a small number of refugees rather than an over-all solution; (c) questioning the Israelis as to the circumstances under which they would be willing to accept some repatriation and as to Israel's own views of what repatriation and compensation would mean in practice; (d) forewarning that he is quite prepared to leave Israel and return directly to the United States if discussions in Israel prove wholly fruitless but that, alternatively, he would plan to return to Israel on this same round, after talking to the Arabs, if there is prospect of progress; (e) the statement that no plan would be set down in detail until his return to the U.S. had provided an opportunity to consult with his principals in the PCC.

Mr. Crawford commented on the reasonableness of this approach. If negotiations break down, Dr. Johnson will clearly wish at least to avoid a situation in which the Arabs unite in opposition to his proposals. Provided that is avoided and the UAR were willing to stand on the sidelines, Dr. Johnson might consider whether there is hope of doing anything on a one or two country basis.

Dr. Johnson agreed this is one "fall back" position to be considered.

2. Joint Meeting with Arab Host Government Representatives:

Dr. Johnson said he had been advised on the previous day by Lebanon's permanent representative in the UN, Ambassador Hakim, that the current Arab League meeting in Riyadh has decided not to insist on joint Arab meetings with him.

3. Meeting with Chiefs of State:

Dr. Johnson said he will wish to meet chiefs and/or heads of state on this round. Little difficulty is anticipated except with Nasser. A letter has been sent to Foreign Minister Fawzi seeking an appointment, back-stopped by a personal message from IBRD President Black to Minister of Economy Kaissouni.

Dr. Johnson said he will inform Ambassador Badeau from Jerusalem, through American Consulate General channels, of the UAR response, if any. If no reply has been received, Ambassador Badeau's support will be appreciated.

4. U.S. Diplomatic Support:

Dr. Johnson said that, as during his first round, he will be under UN auspices and does not want close identification with American officials. He does not wish to be met on arrival and will take the initiative in getting in touch with Chiefs of Mission, with whom he is most anxious to consult.

Department officers assured Dr. Johnson that Missions would be instructed to provide full facilities consistent with this Government's continuing support of the PCC initiative. Thought has been given to the desirability of high level approaches to the Arabs and Israelis prior to Dr. Johnsons's departure. It is concluded that this is perhaps necessary only with the Israelis. In recent weeks they have tended to deprecate the Johnson mission as an exercise "for-the-record", presumably with the objective of watering down Prime Minister Ben-Gurion's May 1961 commitment to President Kennedy.

Dr. Johnson said he thinks a high level USG approach to the Israelis should be made.

5. Special Representative's Relations with Iraq and Saudi Arabia and non-government groups:

It was agreed PCC Chairman Eldem (Turkey) should inform Iraqi and Saudi UN representatives that, consistent with his terms of reference, Dr. Johnson has not scheduled visits to Baghdad and Saudi Arabia, but would be happy to meet with representatives of these countries at their initiative at any time. It was noted that the PCC's March 27 letter to Dr. Johnson (attached)/3/ authorizes contacts with non-government groups and individuals, such as refugee leaders, "in the nature of information-gathering as distinct from official consultations". It was recognized that a relationship with refugee leaders may be useful, but that the Department does not wish the actions of the Special Representative to encourage the "Palestine entity" concept.

/3/Attached but not printed.

6. Detailed Comment on Working Paper V:

Dr. Johnson was informed of certain detailed Department comments on Working Paper V, inter alia the Department's conclusion that it would not be wise to use the open mails in Near East countries for distribution of refugee questionnaires.

7. Financial Considerations and Compensation:

Department officers noted that Dr. Johnson has not requested a commitment in specific terms regarding U.S. willingness to contribute financially to progress on the refugee problem. The Department's position, therefore, remains as stated to Dr. Johnson in New York on March 14./4/ ("As a matter of history, the United States has expressed willingness to give generous support to programs that offer prospect of real progress on aspects of the Arab-Israel problem. The willingness to seek legislative authority for such support continues today.") Department officers reiterated the hope that detailed financial discussions can be avoided during the "second round".

/4/See Document 213.

Department officers agreed with Dr. Johnson's general observation that the cost of a 10-15 year program for a definitive solution of the refugee problem could be estimated as between $1-$2 billion.

Department officers reserved position on the application of compensation as set forth in Working Paper V. As Dr. Johnson is aware, the Department's traditional position has been that UN responsibility for ensuring compensation applies only "on one side of the line", i.e. to those who do not opt for repatriation. This does not mean, of course, that there may not be the possibility of redress through the Israel courts. Further, and while the Department recognizes room for differences of interpretation on this point, we have always tended to regard compensation as including only payment for immovable property adjusted to reflect the depreciation in money values since 1948. At the same time, the Department is not opposed in principle to some form of per capita payment, outside the context of compensation, to enable needy refugees moving in either direction to get a new start in life.

Dr. Johnson acknowledged that there is a difference between the Department's thinking and his own regarding the nature of the compensation obligation. Shorn of its "legislative history", paragraph 11 of Resolution 194 would not seem to exclude an obligation to compensate those who choose repatriation. Nor does the wording of the resolution necessarily bear out the Department's view of a very narrow definition of what is included under compensation.

It was agreed that Dr. Johnson's coming conversations in the area would develop a greater insight into the position of all parties on the financial and compensation aspects of the problem.

238. Memorandum From the Assistant Director of the Bureau of the Budget (Hansen) to President Kennedy

Washington, April 7, 1962.

/1/Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Iran Subjects: Shah Visit, 4/7/62-4/10/62. Secret.

Emphasis in the briefing papers/2/ on the emotional state of the Shah and his obsessive preoccupation with military assistance matters has overshadowed two basic premises for U.S. strategy toward Iran.

/2/Reference is presumably to the Scope Paper and Talking Paper for the President, prepared by the Department of State, to brief President Kennedy prior to the Shah's visit. (Ibid., Iran Subjects: Shah Briefing Book, 4/11/62-4/14/62; and Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 65 D 533, CF 2081-2082)

First: Iran is going through a critical period of socio-political upheaval. Rapid and conspicuous progress in the economic development program and various reforms is essential to maintain reasonable political cohesion.

Second: While recognizing the symbolic and stabilizing role of the monarchy--we are looking to the present regime of Prime Minister Amini rather more than to the Shah--to provide the impetus toward faster economic progress, reform, and the beginnings of a political synthesis which will speed the process of modernization.

The briefing papers imply that you should be completely silent on the role of the Prime Minister. I fear that this could be misconstrued and result in failure to convey to the Shah the view that the U.S. looks on Amini's efforts as contributing to both U.S. interests and the Shah's. After all, it was only several months ago that Ambassador Holmes successfully headed off an attempt by the Shah to dump Amini.

While the briefing papers are right in pointing out the Shah's jealousy of Amini, in my opinion, careful but pointed reference to your recognition of Amini's efforts and the importance of continued support by the Shah would be useful and less risky than a studied avoidance of any discussion. There will continue to be a difficult relationship between the two men under the pressure of recurrent crises in Iran. But we should not overlook the importance of Amini as perhaps the only Iranian politician with the intelligence, prominence, and courage to pursue a reformist policy with some prospects of success.

Possibly more important is the need to convey firmly to the Shah that we consider economic and social progress, particularly at this stage in Iran's development, to be of overriding importance--and that the U.S. stands ready to assist substantially in this effort.

The briefing papers concentrate on the necessity for "unselling" the Shah from a bigger and more glamorous military package. I believe there should be far greater stress on "selling" the Shah on the need for moving faster on the economic and reform front.

This need not involve any more aid commitments than are already proposed. It can readily take the form of simply revealing to the Shah your own assessment of the relative priority of this effort in the nation-building process--that you view the 3rd Plan and the reform programs as the "right" things to do--and that failure or inadequate progress constitute the major risk to Iran, his regime, and U.S. interests.

On both of these points the briefing papers appear to convey a fear that either the Shah might be driven by jealousy to jettison Amini or that he might be spurred to renewed interference with Amini's economic and social reform and development activities.

These fears, given the irrational nature of the Shah, are not entirely groundless. But I believe it is extremely important that the Shah depart with an understanding that, while we do not underrate his importance, or the legitimacy of some of his concerns regarding the military posture and prospects of Iran, our economic and military support is predicated upon the firm view that we look to the development of a responsible ministerial government capable of achieving economic progress and political stability as a cornerstone of our efforts and his own future.

Kenneth R. Hansen

239. Memorandum for the Record

Washington, April 9, 1962.

/1/Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Iran Subjects: Shah Visit, 4/7/62-4/10/62. Secret. Drafted by Komer.

Second Preparatory Session for the Shah's Visit--9 April, 1962/2/

/2/Handwritten notes of this meeting by General Lemnitzer indicate the following attended: the President, Ball, McNamara, William Bundy, McGeorge Bundy, Lemnitzer, Talbot, Komer, Gaud, and Holmes. (National Defense University, Lemnitzer Papers) Attached to the notes are summaries of planned deliveries of military equipment to Iran, July 1, 1962, through June 30, 1967, and of equipment to be delivered to Iran, July 1, 1962, through July 1, 1967. For the final text of the first list, see Annex A to Document 248.

Secretary McNamara, after pointing out that the Shah was apparently going to focus his pleas on Iran's need for modern airpower, described a way in which we could meet these needs without going over the $330 million ceiling. He proposed, subject to further checking, that we rejuggle the package to give Iran four squadrons of N-156 fighters, some sort of improved airfield in eastern Iran, and possibly also some early warning radar. To permit this we would drop out two frigates and two minesweepers for a saving of $10 million. The Secretary also believed that we could save $28 million by recalculating the maintenance costs within MAP for Iran since these seemed excessive. Ambassador Holmes agreed that this would be a much better package. The President approved going ahead on this basis.

It was clearly understood that a five year package along the above lines would be contingent upon a force cut to 150,000 men. Ambassador Holmes believed that the Shah would accept such a reduction.

Mr. Gaud stressed the importance of not talking solely about military matters with the Shah, but of impressing upon him the key role of economic development and telling him that if the 3rd Plan looked good we would make a substantial contribution. The President agreed that he would not neglect the economic side in his discussions with the Shah.

The President was told about the proposal to offer to finance the Bandar Abbas port project,/3/ as a token of our interest in the 3rd Plan. Either he or Secretary Rusk will mention this to the Shah.

/3/In an April 5 memorandum to Secretary Rusk, Bowles strongly recommended that, in discussions with the Shah, U.S. officials make clear the importance the United States attached to the Bandar Abbas port project, which could be used by Afghanistan to obtain an outlet to the sea through Iranian territory and thus provide Afghanistan with an alternative to seeking access to the outside world through the Soviet Union. (Department of State, Central Files, 988.734/4-562)

The President again asked about our commitments to come to the support of Iran. There was discussion of the Eisenhower 1958 letter. No conclusion was reached as to whether we should go any further in statements indicating commitments to come to Iran's assistance, since Ambassador Holmes did not believe that this issue was likely to be posed in such a manner.

R.W. Komer

240. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretaries of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Talbot) and for International Organization Affairs (Cleveland) to Secretary of State Rusk

Washington, April 10, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 325.84/4-1062. Confidential. Drafted by Crawford and cleared by Ludlow in draft and Sisco in draft.

Suggested Approach to Israelis in Support of Dr. Joseph Johnson's "Second Round" on the Arab Refugee Problem


Dr. Johnson plans to arrive in Tel Aviv on April 14. Rather than seeking agreement on a specific "package", he intends to take soundings on a variety of possible approaches to a limited initial movement of refugees in a limited period, in the hope that such a pilot project would break down long-standing psychological and political barriers.

Arab leaders appear to understand the full U.S. backing of the Johnson-PCC initiative. They are being (uncharacteristically) cautious in avoiding propaganda or other moves that would jeopardize the initiative and place on them the onus of recalcitrance. Israel, on the other hand, assures us of its cooperation (although deprecating Dr. Johnson's chances of success) while quietly stimulating action designed to thwart the effort. It has encouraged Congressional support of direct Arab-Israel peace negotiations, which would cut across the lines of the Johnson mission and show the U.S. in Arab eyes as the partisan supporter of an Israel propaganda line. Israel representatives seek our acknowledgement that this effort is "for-the-record" only, presumably to water down the reluctant commitment to cooperate in a try at this sort of approach which Ben-Gurion made to the President last May.

Both we and Dr. Johnson think the Israelis need to be reminded in general but firm terms of Ben-Gurion's commitment to the President and of our full support of the PCC initiative. To give the requisite emphasis to our views, we suggest you call in Ambassador Harman (30 minutes would be adequate). A parallel approach by Ambassador Barbour to Prime Minister Ben-Gurion and Mrs. Meir is planned, as well as a talk with selected American Jewish leaders to solicit support.


1. That you see Ambassador Harman April 12 or 13./2/

/2/Secretary Rusk initialed his approval of the recommendation and scheduled a meeting with Harman at 4:30 p.m. on April 13.

241. Memorandum From the Department of State Executive Secretary (Battle) to the President's Special Assistant for National Security Affairs (Bundy)

Washington, April 11, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 611.86A/4-1162. Secret. Drafted by Seelye on April 9 and cleared by Talbot, Gaud, Duncan (NE/E), Colonel Kettlehut (NR), and Strong.

Status of Matters Flowing From Meeting Between the President and King Saud at White House on February 13

/2/See Document 191.

1. Economic Assistance for Saudi Arabia: On the basis of recommendations received from our Embassy in Jidda and after close consultation with AID we have agreed on an approach which includes the following ingredients:

a. The early dispatch of a two-man economic mission to Saudi Arabia to consult with the Saudi Supreme Planning Board and the Saudi Government concerning areas of economic need and;

b. The early dispatch to Saudi Arabia of three five-kilowatt radio transmitters for use in Saudi Arabia's domestic service as a gift to King Saud. We regard this as an earnest of our desire to be responsive to the King following the White House meeting and to maintain the momentum in the development of our relations which King Saud's visit here has produced.

2. Credit Terms for Latest Saudi Arms Purchase Request: We are still exploring the possibility of extending credit terms to the Saudis with respect to their latest request for purchase of approximately $16 million worth of arms. We have informed the Saudis that we are not sanguine of success and that we shall provide them with a definite reply within the coming weeks. It is almost certain that in order to service this request we must deprive other more exigent programs of an equivalent amount of funds. We believe that our favorable response with regard to the King's personal request for radio transmitters will cushion the effect of a negative response with regard to the arms credit.

3. Relinquishment of U.S.G. Operation of the Dhahran Airfield: On April 2 we officially turned over the operation of the Dhahran Airfield to the Saudi Arabian Government and have left behind sufficient equipment for the Saudis to operate the airfield in accordance with our 1957 agreement. We have also offered for sale to the Saudis other types of equipment which the Saudis have requested to purchase. An American contracting firm has been sub-contracted by the Saudi Arabian Government to operate the airfield services and is being assisted by ICAO communications technicians.

4. Negotiations on the U.S. Military Training Mission: Our Ambassador in Jidda is now undertaking negotiations with the Saudi Arabian Government on this subject. The revised agreement which he proposes to submit to the Saudis has now been amended and approved by State in close consultation with Defense. We expect negotiations to be completed within the next two or three months.

5. Irritants in U.S.-Saudi Relations: In response to the President's comments to the King during the White House meeting on February 13, the King has released from customs the backlog of equipment consigned to the Consulate General at Dhahran and has promised to expedite further customs clearances. In addition, the King has been cordially responsive with regard to problems which our Ambassador has called to his personal attention involving the phase-out of our operations at Dhahran Airfield and negotiations on the new military training mission agreement.

N.A. Veliotes/3/

/3/Veliotes signed for Battle above Battle's typed signature.

242. Memorandum From the U.N. Adviser to the Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Ludlow) to the Assistant Secretary (Talbot)/1/

Washington, April 11, 1962.

/1/Source: Department of State, NEA/IAI Files: Lot 70 D 229, Territory & Boundary Disputes--Israel-Syria. Confidential; Personal; For Eyes Only.

Lake Tiberias

Two conversations which I had this morning lead me to pass on the following information and suggestions:

1. The President called Harlan Cleveland last night and wanted to know why things had developed the way they had on the Lake Tiberias incident without his knowing the details and being kept informed. Harlan, I assume, made the logical defense, that the Secretary's memorandum on the original resolution calling for condemnation had gone over to the President/2/ and this had been followed up by further contacts between State and the White House, exclusive of Mr. Stevenson's relations with the White House. The President reputedly told Harlan that Mike Feldman was the man who handled problems of the sort with which the Council had just been confronted. The President was obviously very much annoyed by the amount of pressure which he was getting on this particular problem.

/2/Document 226.

2. The Israeli correspondent, Yaari, who obviously is more than a correspondent since his brother was in the Embassy here in Washington and is now in the Foreign Ministry, called on me to get an explanation as to why the resolution adopted in the Security Council last week was so "one-sided". He gave me the expected Ben-Gurion and soon-to-be Zionist line on our unfairness; he particularly attacked Mr. Stevenson for having been critical of Syrian provocations in his first speech and his not seeing to it that there was similar criticism in the resolution which was adopted.

I defended our resolution as eminently just and as balanced as we could get it under the circumstances given Israel's previous offenses of a similar nature. I pointed out that Mr. Stevenson had heavily stressed Syrian provocations but our position on this subject was well-known. I also emphasized that our concern was to get a positive resolution which would strengthen the UN in the area and that in order to do this, we had to give careful consideration to the tactical situation in the UN. This tactical situation not only included Soviet veto, but our own careful estimate of a substantial fallout of votes on our resolution if we were unable to take the wind out of the UAR (Syrian) resolution which had been tabled previously.

We went through the rest of the well-known differences which we have including Israel's non-participation in the MAC, its sovereignty over the Demilitarized Zone and sovereignty over Lake Tiberias--all of which were raised at Yaari's initiative.

3. In view of the two paragraphs above, it is perhaps well for you to have full recollection of the following developments in this case:

a. Our first draft resolution which we proposed to send to the White House with Mr. Ball's memorandum included the positive elements of cooperation with the UN but had as operative paragraphs the condemnation of Israel's retaliatory action of March 16, 17 and a subsequent paragraph which held that Syria's actions on March 8 were a clear violation of the Armistice Agreement and the provisions of Article 2 (4) of the Charter. You will recall that Mr. Ball was unhappy originally at the idea of condemnation but bought our position on the basis of my suggestion that Israel having [had] been condemned twice already for similar military action. Were we to start with language less than that, it would be misunderstood in the Arab world to our detriment and, far worse, we could not, given the problems of domestic politics, "escalate upward" the language of the resolution. Mr. Ball was persuaded and the original resolution went over as indicated.

You will also recall that the following day Mr. McGhee asked the same question and we gave him the same answer and he was satisfied with our decision on condemnation.

b. The first time that Mr. Stevenson apparently paid any attention to the resolution was Tuesday night, April 3, at which time he rejected the condemnation paragraph and decided to speak to the President the following noon at luncheon (luncheon for President Goulart, Brazil) on the subject. He came to Washington and at a meeting following the luncheon (at which I was present), he indicated that the President had rather quickly brushed him off by suggesting that the entire problem was between him and the Department. As a result of our meeting that afternoon, it was Bob Strong's and my impression that Mr. Stevenson had agreed that our position was correct, namely: that condemnation was necessary and that there had to be a subsequent paragraph commenting on Syria's action as a violation of the Armistice Agreement, etc. Subsequent to that time, you, Harlan Cleveland and Mr. Stevenson met with the Secretary. You are acquainted with the circumstances of that meeting. The result of that meeting was the preparation of the memorandum which went forward jointly initialed by you and Harlan the following day setting forth alternative positions with regard to the critical paragraph on Israel's action but forcefully urging that the stronger position be taken.

c. I am informed that Mr. Stevenson, following that meeting with you and the Secretary, notified Mr. Schlesinger and, I gather, Mr. Bundy that he favored a weaker phrasing of the resolution. In the meantime USUN (I presume Charlie Yost) had shown our original condemnation resolution to the French, which meant that it was also presumably thereafter promptly shown to the Israelis. Thus, by Wednesday night, the Israelis had seen our original resolution. By Thursday they had heard that there was uncertainty about such strong phrasing; by Thursday night, when Mr. Stevenson had returned to New York and was in negotiation with Michael Comay and the Syrians, the Israelis knew that we had officially backed off from our position.

d. Thursday night and Friday morning, USUN was negotiating not only with the British and French, but with the Syrians and the Israelis. The result of the negotiations was the tabling of our resolution Friday afternoon which emphatically let up on the Syrians. However, in so doing, the Israelis became increasingly aware of the fact that our amendments were less and less satisfactory to them, to the point where the resolution was less balanced from the point of view of our original resolution which they had already seen. In short, USUN tried to "escalate up" with the consequences which we had foreseen.

4. Our resolution was adopted because, for once, the Syrians and the Egyptians were smart enough to realize that a little bit of indirect condemnation of Israel was better than a Soviet veto or no resolution at all. Had the UAR resolution remained and been put to the vote, it would have failed of adoption for lack of votes. However, had that happened, the Soviets would have insisted on incorporating the strong elements of that resolution by amendment into our resolution. Those efforts at amendment would have failed and this would have served as the basis for the Soviets' vetoing our resolution on the basis that it was not strong enough.

5. A comparison of the two resolutions, i.e., the first that we put up and the one that was adopted, certainly gives basis for Israeli irritation at us, although they had hoped that either resolution would be defeated so that there would be no obligation on the books for them to cooperate with TSO. The lesson to be drawn from this go-around, and in defense of NEA's position, is that the Israelis, having seen the original resolution and then having seen us back off from it, saw the United States--at least USUN--being patently unfairer by sacrificing substance for tactical considerations with the passage of time in order to get a resolution through. By such a procedure, we initially admit to the significance of internal pressure while ultimately accepting the necessity of being smarter from the point of view of international tactics. From this it is clear that a decision must be made, wherever a Palestine debate occurs in the Security Council, as to what is wisest in terms of our substantive international interests in the UN. We must draft our resolution accordingly, and refuse to negotiate it with either the Arabs or the Israelis. Obviously, the resolution must take into consideration the risk of a Soviet veto, but the willingness to allow internal politics to be injected into United Nations considerations will never satisfy the interested political pressure group, and the net result of trying to oblige it is to offend--to our ultimate detriment in our international relations with Israel and the Arab States because the Arabs are painfully conscious of any Administration's possible sensitivity on problems affecting Israel.

243. Memorandum of Conversation

Washington, April 12, 1962, 9:30 a.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 611.88/4-1262. Secret. Drafted by Talbot, Bowling, and Gaud; cleared in the Department of Defense on April 23; and approved in S on April 28 and in the White House on May 4. According to the President's Appointment Book, the meeting lasted until 11:59 a.m. (Kennedy Library)

United States-Iran Relations

The President
The Shah of Iran
Abbas Aram, Foreign Minister of Iran
Dean Rusk, Secretary of State
Robert S. McNamara, Secretary of Defense
Phillips Talbot, Assistant Secretary of State
William S. Gaud, Assistant AID Administrator
Julius C. Holmes, U.S. Ambassador to Iran
Hosein Qods-Nakhai, Iranian Ambassador to U.S.

/2/The Shah of Iran visited the United States April 10-18 and was in Washington April 11-13. Department of State Press Release No. 224, April 5, outlined the Shah's schedule during the visit, memoranda of conversations during the visit, cables, correspondence, and other documents relating to the visit. (Ibid., Conference Files: Lot 65 D 533, CF 2082) Memoranda of conversations held during the visit are in the Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Country Series, Iran Subjects: Shah Visit, 4/16/62-5/14/62. In response to a request from the Iranian Ambassador for a record of the Shah's conversations with the President and U.S. Cabinet members, the Department of State prepared a Summary of Conversations between His Imperial Majesty, the President, and the Secretaries of State and Defense. It is attached to a memorandum from Battle to Bundy, April 20. (Department of State, Central Files, 611.88/4-2062)

The President and the Shah retired to the President's office. The remaining members of the party talked in the Cabinet Room.

The Secretary of State welcomed the Iranian Ambassador and the Foreign Minister and expressed the satisfaction of the United States at this opportunity for the President and the Shah to meet together. He said that in thinking about Iran's part of the world he had concluded that it was important to all to strengthen the regional relationships of the CENTO area. He mentioned regional disputes such as the Afghan-Pakistan problem and the Kurdish troubles. He requested the views of the Iranian officials as to the political health of the area.

The Foreign Minister expressed appreciation for the welcome accorded the Shah and his party. He said that more should be done to build up the solidarity of CENTO. Iran would make certain proposals to this and at the upcoming CENTO Ministerial Meeting. It would be good to have periodical meetings of the leaders of the CENTO countries. In the case of the regional members, meetings might be held once every month or so.

The Foreign Minister expressed his concern that Pakistan Foreign Minister Qadir might not attend the London meeting, since his absence would weaken the meeting, and give rise to reports that Pakistan was losing interest in the alliance. It is known that Ayub feels the CENTO Commander should not be of British nationality, and Qadir's absence might be interpreted as a gesture of dissatisfaction with the appointment of a British officer to that post.

The Secretary of State agreed that it was important that Qadir attend the meeting. He suggested that, acting individually, the United States and Iran might tell Qadir of the importance of his attending the meeting. The Secretary mentioned that he himself, when he had heard that Qadir was not attending, was undecided whether or not he should make the trip. He had decided, however, to attend. He stated that the United States would inform London and Ankara that we and the Iranians will approach Qadir; the British and Turks might wish to follow suit.

The Secretary of State pointed out that CENTO should not be merely a framework for bilateral talks between the United States or the United Kingdom on the one hand and the individual regional countries on the other. The solidarity of the regional members themselves is a matter of real importance, and should spur frequent consultations among the regional members.

Ambassador Qods-Nakhai expressed the belief that the Ambassadors of each of the CENTO countries resident in each of the CENTO capitals might meet once a month. The Secretary of State said that he intended to invite the CENTO Ambassadors in Washington to lunch on a mutually convenient day before the London meeting.

The Secretary of State asked the Iranian officials for their views on the situation in Afghanistan. He said that the United States is concerned over the extent of Soviet influence and over the fact that Pakistan's difficulties with Afghanistan trouble our own relations with Pakistan. He wondered if Iran could do anything to help; and suggested that perhaps the Shah could exercise some influence on both countries.

Ambassador Qods-Nakhai said that Iran had sent messages to the heads of both states, but with little effect. A transit agreement has been concluded between Iran and Afghanistan. Iran had demonstrated its good will by offering transport rates that would barely meet costs. Then the Afghans had asked for a free zone in a port. Iran had responded favorably, but the question required further study. Iran believed that Bandar Abbas would be suitable place for such a free zone. Iran is concerned by developments in Afghanistan, particularly by the construction of military airports near the Iranian border. The Afghans plead as an excuse their troubles with Pakistan, but Iran is of course concerned with this type of Russian-sponsored construction.

Ambassador Qods-Nakhai remarked that Iran had always tried to have good relations with the Iraqis. Qasim is having trouble with the Kurds, which concerns all countries in the area. The Kurds of Iran, however, are quite happy and Iran is doing everything it can to improve their living conditions.

The Foreign Minister returned to the problem of Afghanistan, noting that Afghanistan represents a danger to Iran because the Soviets are trying to make it a showcase, and Iran is uncertain how long Afghanistan can remain independent under Soviet pressure. The United States and the United Kingdom do not seem to be as disturbed about the Afghan situation as is Iran. Iran finds it difficult to accept Afghan pretensions of friendship while Iranian officials there report that Afghanistan is drifting toward the USSR while professing neutralism. The Afghans are bringing in quantities of military equipment from the USSR, and the Soviets are building airports and roads there. The problem deserves special examination by CENTO.

Replying to the Secretary of State's question as to what attitude Iran would suggest that the United States adopt, the Foreign Minister said that it could be argued that any American action could push the Afghans into the grip of the Russians. The Afghans are devoted to their independence and are not inclined toward communism, although they are jealous of Iran and do not want Iran to become too strong. The Americans could advise the Afghans categorically that Afghanistan is following a dangerous policy in relying so heavily on Russian aid; they can be talked to.

The Secretary of State replied that we do advise the Afghans, but that there comes a point at which the relationship between the United States and Afghanistan could be endangered. He asked the Foreign Minister if it was important for the United States to maintain a presence in Afghanistan.

The Foreign Minister said that it was highly important for the United States to maintain a presence in both Iraq and Afghanistan. It often appears, however, that in disputes such as the Helmand waters problem with Afghanistan or the Shatt-al-Arab problem with Iraq, the United States gives the impression that it is siding with the other country rather than with Iran.

The Secretary of State remarked that these were examples of a serious global problem for the United States, in that one or both parties in local disputes desire the United States to take an active part in their resolution. One or both parties to those disputes then become angry over the role played by the United States. The Secretary emphasized the desirability of Iran's presenting its views at the London meeting with regard to current conditions in the general CENTO area.

The Secretary of State then described our uncertainty over the intentions and plans of the Soviet Union, reviewing the current situation with regard to the Berlin and nuclear testing issues. He asked the Iranians if they had any clearer view of Soviet intentions.

The Foreign Minister and Ambassador Qods-Nakhai discussed Iranian relations with the USSR, pointing out that the Russians have adopted a somewhat friendlier personal tone but without any change in their substantive position and with hostile radio propaganda continuing. The Russians have raised with Iran its membership in CENTO. There has been some discussion of an Iranian note or protocol, but at present there is no real contact between the Soviet and Iranian Governments.

The President and the Shah entered the Cabinet Room at this point.

The President said that he and the Shah had been discussing general questions of bilateral interest. The Shah had asked our impression of the military situation, and the President had expressed the view that no military build-up in Iran would allow Iran to stop a Soviet attack unaided. If the Soviets want general war, the President had said, they would attack the United States directly; thus, the President had said, a very large Iranian Army was not needed. The Shah had expressed concern over the prospects in Afghanistan over the next five years. Further, the Shah, while regarding his armed forces as loyal, had expressed his concern over the anxiety of many of his officers who see the United States giving more military aid to other countries than to Iran, saying that America treats Turkey as a wife, and Iran as a concubine. The President had indicated our strong feeling that the main problem in Iran was internal, and had noted that because of the Shah's support of a very strong Government in Iran, including a distinguished Foreign Minister and an effective Prime Minister, the Shah had been more successful than in the past in mobilizing support for his long-range goals for Iran.

The President said that there were two problems for discussion: how to deal with military matters and how we can help in solving Iran's economic problems.

The Shah thanked the President for his summary, and expressed his concern over the extent of Russian military aid to Afghanistan. He said that Iraq also poses a strange problem--Qasim carries on no economic development and maintains a reign of terror, yet despite his struggle with the Kurds he manages to hang on. The Shah understood that all the Kurdish tribes except one were now united against Qasim, and if Qasim fails to control them great problems would arise. Although the Iranian Kurds are true Aryans, any minority can get restless, and the security of Iraq could be threatened. Turkey, which has a Kurdish minority of four million, could also be affected. Iran therefore needs more mobility for its ground forces and more aircraft. The Soviets have not intervened in the Kurdish problem, but they might well do so if the situation were to worsen. Many of the Barzani Kurds who have lived 15 years in the Soviet Union must be Soviet agents. Iraq has much Soviet military equipment, and in the present situation, the result of the Soviet military presence there could lead to incalculable results. Qasim has rejected the hand of friendship extended to him by Iran. Iran's relations with Iraq are complicated by the situation in the Shatt-al-Arab, where an unfortunate treaty/3/ has placed control of the river in the hands of Iraq. Iraq could sink a ship in the river and block off Iran's one major port; Iraq is planning a port on the Persian Gulf which would lessen Iraqi dependence on the river, and is also planning irrigation works which would, by removing water, make river navigation difficult.

/3/A treaty between Iran and Iraq, concluded on July 4, 1937, recognized the validity of an earlier Iranian-Turkish protocol of 1913 and the Minutes of the Delimitation Commission of 1914, which in turn interpreted the Treaty of Erzerum of 1847.

Syria and Egypt, said the Shah, have switched to Soviet equipment and are receiving massive military assistance from Russia. Egypt has bombers, perhaps 12 destroyers, 9 submarines, heavy tanks, and other matériel which is a subject of great concern to Iran.

In Egypt, more troubles are in store. Pan-Arabism did not work; now Egypt is talking Arab socialism, which will also fail, since it runs counter to the Arab mind. When it fails, communism would establish itself in Egypt, and, in order to satisfy the restless Arab peoples, they might be led into some kind of foreign adventure, which Iran fears.

The Shah said that Iran has good natural resources and is not overpopulated. With maximum exploitation of its resources and maximum help from other countries, Iran could establish a high standard of living and a powerful economy which could enable it to carry its necessary arms burden.

The President suggested that the Shah might describe Soviet aid in the area at his lunch later in the day with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The President added that we know the Arab states are unstable, but that a military attack would be directed against Israel, not Iran.

The Shah agreed, but added that the Arab leaders wish to take over the Persian Gulf area as well. The Russians cannot out-produce the Western world, but by seizing Middle East oil resources they could cripple the economy of the West.

The President said that the West could survive a seizure of Middle Eastern oil, with some difficulty, by the development of other sources of oil and adaptation to the use of other fuels. The general instability of the area in which Iran is located is a problem of more immediate concern to the United States.

The President asked the Secretary of Defense to tell the Shah something of our current views on the immediate military and strategic situation of Iran.

The Secretary of Defense stated that the President had asked him to examine the situation, and that he hoped to discuss his conclusions in detail with the Shah at their separate meeting the next day. In very general terms, we had concluded that the Iranian armed forces are too large and are not properly equipped. We believed it would be wise to reduce manpower levels by about 25 percent; the United States would be prepared to undertake a five-year program for the supply of necessary equipment, if Iran would agree to so reduce the size of its armed forces.

The President pointed out that many Iranian military officers are being trained in the United States, and that they doubt that they are getting first class equipment in the military assistance program.

The Secretary of Defense said that he understood this concern, and pointed out that in the contemplated five-year plan there were a number of very modern armored vehicles not yet in use by United States forces, and that fighter-bombers not yet even in production might be included in the plan.

The Shah asked how the proposed reduction of his forces would fit into CENTO planning, which calls for larger, not smaller, forces. He mentioned that so far not a single soldier had been committed by the CENTO countries for the defense of Iran.

The Secretary of Defense said that this question could be discussed at the Shah's meeting at the Department of Defense, and that General Lemnitzer could comment on it. He repeated the United States view that Iran required not larger forces, but more modern and mobile units.

The Secretary of State remarked that CENTO should not be a framework for bilateral negotiations between the regional allies and the United States and the United Kingdom, but should become an instrument of regional solidarity.

The President said that he recognized that Iran would get no help from Pakistan and Turkey if Iran were invaded; those countries would have their own troubles. The United States must convince the Soviet Union that we will protect Iran. Iran had received strong assurances from previous United States Administrations; we endorse these assurances, and the Soviets know that we stand behind Iran.

The Shah said that he could not tell his people and his Army that they do not have a mission to resist Soviet invasion. If the Shah were to take troops away from the northern border, the people would feel that they were unprotected and would therefore try to make contact with the enemy in the hope of being treated well if an invasion occurred.

The President replied that the function of the Iranian armed forces is of course to resist attack from any direction. Their armed resistance, even if short, would provide time for other responses, and would be the first step in containing a Russian attack. The United States does not have unlimited resources. But within those resources, the United States wants to strengthen, not weaken, the Imperial armed forces in their capacity to fulfill their role. We give about as much aid to Pakistan as to Iran. We give much more to Turkey, but, as the Shah had said, all Turkey has is its Army.

The Shah said that he would be happy to discuss with the Secretary of Defense details of how mobile units could be strengthened. But the necessary number of soldiers must be retained to give the impression that the country would be defended. An Iranian soldier costs only $150 yearly, making the cost of 50,000 soldiers only $8 million each year.

The President remarked that much more than $8 million was involved, when one took training, equipment, and other expenses into account.

The President asked the Secretary of State to speak on the subject of economic assistance to Iran. The Secretary emphasized the importance of economic development in today's world, and expressed great confidence in the progress being made in Iran under the Shah's leadership. He said that the United States wanted to give all the help it could.

The Shah described and endorsed the Third Development Plan, and noted the dangers of trying to do too much at once, as well as the problem of unemployment raised by the stabilization program. Among the more useful possibilities in relation to this problem would be the construction of housing for government employees as a substitute for pay raises. At present more than a third of these employees' wages goes for rent. Help in this field would be most useful.

The Secretary asked the Shah's opinion as to the importance of the Bandar Abbas port project. The Shah replied that this project was dear to his heart, that it would provide a fine harbor, reduce dependency on the exposed port of Khorranshahr, open up an important region of Iran, be important in case of American military operations in Iran, and open up a shorter route to Afghanistan and reduce the Russian danger there.

The Shah said he hoped that American development loans in Iran would be for terms of forty years. The President remarked that United States development loan terms were softer than those of other Western countries, and expressed his desire that United States representatives at future consortium meetings do everything possible to bring the terms offered by these countries in line with our own terms.

The Shah said that Iran would require continuing budgetary support from the United States. The President indicated that Iran could expect no such aid in future from the United States, referring to the history of aid legislation, Congressional cuts in requests for supporting assistance funds, and the United States balance of payments' situation. He mentioned the basic difference between this type of assistance on the one hand and development lending on the other.

The President asked Mr. Gaud to discuss measures by which Iran could help itself with regard to its budgetary problems. Mr. Gaud suggested that Iran might unify its governmental, development, and military budgets and recognize their interrelationship, take measures to increase its revenues and mobilize indigenous resources, effect further economies, and improve governmental administration.

The Shah replied that although much could be accomplished in time, progress would be slow, and the stabilization program would result in a reduction of national income during the coming year.

In reply to a question from the President, the Shah said that there was no significant flight of capital from Iran.

The Secretary of Defense pointed out the interrelationship of military and non-military budgetary requirements, adding that an individual soldier actually costs a great deal more than $150 a year, and that a reduction of 50,000 men would save a number of millions annually.

The President declared that in matters of foreign assistance our principal problem is the method of distributing our limited resources; we could never do all that we wished to do. However, he hoped to give the Shah, before he left Washington, a definite idea of what the United States could do for Iran over the next five years in the way of military assistance, as well as a more precise picture of the economic assistance which the United States could provide.

The Shah brought up the possibility of increasing Iran's oil sales. He noted that production costs in Kuwait were 21 cents a barrel but were about 27 cents in Iran. However, Iran must receive increasing oil revenues if it were to continue to exist, and if Iran ceased to exist, Kuwait's oil would also be denied to the West. He hoped, therefore, that the United States Government and the major American companies would recognize the importance of increasing Iranian off-take.

The President said that if the Oil Consortium could get some special arrangement giving them a price preference on added production increments, or something along that line, we might urge the companies to increase further their Iranian production. He suggested to the Shah that the Iranians talk to the Department of State, more specifically to Under Secretary of State Ball to see what could be done.

The Shah noted that the oil companies had come close to promising Iran a 10 percent increase in off-take yearly. The most important thing in talking to the companies was to emphasize that if Iran remains free and stable, the oil will continue to be available; if Iran collapses the companies will have nothing.

244. Memorandum of Conversation

Washington, April 12, 1962.

/1/Source: Washington National Records Center, RG 330, OASD/ISA Files: FRC 65 A 3501, Iran 1962, 000.1-092. Secret. Presumably drafted by William Bundy. The Shah's schedule, contained in Department of State Press Release No. 224, April 5, indicates that the Shah would meet with McNamara between 3:10 and 4:30 p.m. Handwritten notes of the meeting by Lemnitzer are in the National Defense University, Lemnitzer Files.

United States-Iran Relations


The Shah of Iran
Major Gen. Khatami, Commander, Imperial Iranian Air Force
Brig. Gen. Afkhami, J-5, Imperial Iranian Supreme Commander's Staff

Honorable Robert S. McNamara, Secretary of Defense
General L.L. Lemnitzer, Chairman, JCS
Honorable Julius C. Holmes, U.S. Ambassador to Iran
Mr. William Bundy, Deputy Assistant Secretary, ISA/OSD

After introductory remarks, the Shah led off by saying that the key question was whether "CENTO recommendations" were to be taken seriously as a basis for planning or not. He had before him a CENTO planning study dated January 5, 1962 (CENTO/CMPS/TS.3000/3/2, Joint Campaign Plan--Requirements--Memorandum by the Chief of Staff Combined Military Planning Staff) and read from it at frequent intervals in the early part of the conversation.

Mr. McNamara countered by saying that our strategic views are based in the first instance on the importance of our nuclear striking forces as the basic deterrent to Soviet action anywhere against such countries as Iran. He laid before the Shah a table showing the prospective buildup of U.S. striking power, with particular emphasis on an alert status of 15 minutes or better, and thus virtually immune to Soviet neutralization.

The table was then reviewed in detail. The Shah raised a question about anti-missile missile claims by Khrushchev, and Secretary McNamara said these were greatly exaggerated, that there was a tremendous gap between achieving a single interception of a shot known in advance and achieving an operational capability in the face of multiple shots, decoy techniques, and multiple warhead possibilities. The Shah then asked about "invisible" missiles, to which Secretary McNamara responded by saying that there were ways of confusing the radar pickup but any method of eliminating it was "way off" in the future. He said he had no doubt we were picking up Soviet shots, which led the Shah to comment briefly that the US got valuable information from its sites in Iran. Secretary McNamara nodded, and the matter was not further pursued.

The Shah asked specifically whether we "still" had nuclear plans to hit the border areas northwest of Iran. Secretary McNamara and General Lemnitzer replied that we did, as part of the over-all master targeting plan.

At the close of this phase of the discussion, the Shah reverted at once to his original question--were "CENTO recommendations" to be the basis of planning? Secretary McNamara said that in our view the mission of the Iranian forces should be related more to the threat from Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the force level and equipment we would propose should be regarded more as complementary than a part of CENTO studies.

The Shah then made an earnest statement of Iran's needs, arguing that Turkey and Pakistan could not (or at least would not) earmark any forces for the defense of Iran. He then asked what the role of the CENTO Military Staff Commander was to be. He said that just before his departure Ayub had sent him a message that he, Ayub, was very unhappy over the nomination of a British general for this post, feeling that a British officer would not possibly have the necessary leverage and control over the key US forces. Ayub had gone so far as to say that he might drop out of CENTO if the nomination were insisted on, rather than an American. The Shah said that Iran did not share this view, but did wonder how the new setup could be effective.

General Lemnitzer responded by giving a brief history of the CENTO CCMS proposal, pointing out his own part in getting it adopted. He said that there had been talk of modeling the setup on NATO, but that the present idea did not go so far. It was like NATO, however, in that the Commander did not actually have forces at his command until hostilities broke out. On the question of Turkey and Pakistan, General Lemnitzer agreed that their difficulty in assigning or earmarking forces was a major one. As to naming an American as CCMS, both Secretary McNamara and General Lemnitzer referred briefly to the difficulty of doing so as long as the US was not a member of CENTO.

The Shah then referred to the force level problem and specifically to the proposal for a 150,000 man force level that had been made by the President. He said this ran dead counter to CENTO studies, which recommended substantial increases. He then read at length from the CENTO paper quoting excerpts to the effect that Iran needed much greater forces--and that "US military experts" agreed. Some specific figures from the paper were 12 regular plus 3 armored divisions, 300 fighter aircraft (20% all-weather), 24 light bombers, extensive early warning and GCI facilities, and surface-to-air missiles, etc.

At the close of this reading the Shah asked bluntly whether we were now to shift away from CENTO, in effect to a bilateral basis of planning for Iran's forces. Secretary McNamara did not respond flatly in the affirmative, but did state that CENTO plans must be reconsidered.

The Shah appeared to take this as an affirmative response that a change in the planning basis was being made. He commented that he could not tell the Iranian people this, and that the new planning basis would depart completely from CENTO. He then went on to outline the kind of deployment in forces that might be visualized for Iran. This would consist of two parts, the first being "very strong", well-equipped, mobile forces deployed so that they could cover rapidly either the Iraqi or the Afghan front. The second element would be static forces in the north, less well-equipped and mobile, and designed to fulfill purely a static role.

Secretary McNamara commented that we would be prepared to join in a study of such a concept, either through our CENTO liaison, through direct contact, or both. He expressed the preliminary view that such a deployment would be more effective than the present one.

In response to the Secretary's question, the Shah indicated that the force levels he had in mind for the second component would be three regiments (equivalent of a division) in the north (presumably in the Tabriz area), and a division in the east. In addition, the division that would continue to be stationed in Teheran would cover the nearby border area.

The discussion turned to the specific figure of 150,000 men. The Shah said that it might be necessary to go slightly above this figure in order to avoid giving the Iranian people the impression that their northern border was no longer defensive. Secretary McNamara agreed that the U.S. could study whatever force level need might exist above 150,000 men in order "to avoid the appearance of complete depletion". No precise figure of the possible add-on was mentioned. The strong implication of the discussion was that it would be on the order of 10,000 men.

In response to Ambassador Holmes' questions, the Shah clarified a remark he had made about transferring border guard troops to the Gendarmerie. He made clear that this would be the only major administrative change, and that the two divisions he envisaged being deployed in the north would remain a part of the regular army.

Secretary McNamara then put before the Shah a formal proposal to send a planning team from the Joint Chiefs of Staff to consider with the Iranian Armed Forces their deployment and force levels in accordance with the above discussion. The Shah quickly assented to this proposal.

Secretary McNamara then put before the Shah a written summary sheet of the proposed military assistance equipment deliveries, mid-1962 to mid-1967./2/ He proceeded to run down the list explaining each item. With respect to the M-113 APCs, he and General Lemnitzer stressed that these were the newest and finest, and were available only in limited quantities to U.S. forces. The Shah asked several questions about the characteristics of the M-113 and seemed pleased with the responses.

/2/Not attached to the source text. For text of the final list entitled "Planned Deliveries of Military Equipment to Iran, July 1, 1962 through June 30, 1967," see Annex A to Document 248.

The Secretary also laid stress on Item 4 (vehicles), pointing out that this would deal with the problem of replacing the present World War II vehicles in the Iranian inventory. Here, and at several other points in the discussion, the Secretary stressed that this item was the key to the Shah's emphasis on mobility for his forces.

With respect to Item 7 (H-43B helicopters), the Secretary and General Lemnitzer again stressed that this was a highly modern item that was just beginning to be introduced in U.S. forces.

With respect to Item 8 (civic action support), the Secretary expressed pleasure at the progress that Iran was making in this area, and the Shah nodded in apparent agreement and approval.

Item 9 (Guchon) and 10 (liaison aircraft) caused no particular response or comment.

With respect to Item 11 (C-130s), the Shah expressed immediate concern whether 4 would be adequate. He then stated that Iran's pressing need was to augment the present C-47 inventory by 12 additional aircraft for early delivery. (See further discussion below.)

With respect to Item 12 (combat air capability), the Shah questioned whether there should be 13 aircraft per squadron. The Secretary and General Lemnitzer responded that for covering dispersed areas, we believed such a squadron strength was better than a greater number, and that our own squadrons were now following in the range from 15 to 18 aircraft. The Shah indicated that the basic question was whether the total number of aircraft was adequate, but did not pursue the point at this stage.

The Secretary specifically called attention to the necessity for improvement in the operational and maintenance efficiency of the Iranian Air Force. General Katahmi responded that the maintenance was satisfactory on the F-86s, but had to be done out of the country on C-47s of which only 6 of the stock of 11 were now operational. He said that the I.A.F. had asked MAAG for an additional support but had had no response. He conceded that the I.A.F. maintenance was weak on electronics and that the NCOs were not well-trained in this area. The Shah said that as new aircraft were brought in, experts should be sent at the outset to train the Iranians for maintenance, to which the Secretary agreed.

In response to the Shah's question, the Secretary said that the choice of aircraft lay between the N-156 and the F-104-17, that the former appeared to be a highly versatile and satisfactory aircraft, but that the F-104-17 might have certain logistical advantages because of the presence of 104s in neighboring countries. The Shah showed keen interest in the discussion of the characteristics, and particularly in the 1200 mile range of both aircraft mentioned.

The Shah then asked whether we envisaged keeping the F-86s in service. The Secretary said that we certainly did, and that we ourselves had deployed F-86s to Europe and were continuing to keep the aircraft as first-line aircraft. The Shah expressed surprise at this, but seemed somewhat pleased and relieved.

The Secretary noted that we believed the F-86 to be superior to the MIG-15 or MIG-17. He said that this was particularly true with Sidewinders, and bluntly asked why the I.A.F. did not have its Sidewinders in operational shape. General Katahmi referred briefly and vocally to problems of creating storage facilities. The Secretary (here and on several other occasions) stressed that we could not undertake to supply modern aircraft without improvement of the maintenance capabilities of the Iranian Air Force.

With respect to Item 12d (staging base in northeast Iran), the Shah quickly picked up the terms and expressed the view that a "full base" was needed. The Secretary said that we could study this problem further, but that the staging base concept was the personal recommendation of General LeMay. The Shah expressed a desire to have bases at both Meshed and Zahadan. He later returned to this same point, and all hands examined the map and agreed that the matter should be studied.

The Shah raised the question of protection of airfields, and expressed a desire for surface-to-air missiles for this purpose. The Secretary responded that it was our judgment that this was not the most effective way to protect airfields, but that reliance should be placed upon adequate early warning and adequate numbers of fighter aircraft. The Shah did not pursue this subject more in detail.

After completing review of the list, Secretary McNamara returned to the problem of maintenance, both of ground and air equipment, and urged the vital importance of command supervision in this area. General Katahmi responded that the in-commission rate of the F-86s were now at a satisfactory 80%, and that 70 pilots were being maintained in a proficient status. He again admitted a weakness in electronics and suggested that "someone on top" was needed. (This appeared to be a suggestion for greater U.S. participation in the electronics training process.)

With respect to ground equipment, General Katahmi noted that many of the trucks were extremely old and had serious maintenance difficulties as a result.

Reverting to the list, Secretary McNamara stressed the great qualities of the C-130, and that only limited numbers of this aircraft were now available in our own forces. In summary, he noted that the total proposed list represented an increase of 50-75% in the annual delivery rate, over the deliveries of the past two years.

The Shah returned to the transport question, pointing out Iran's vast spaces and stressing particularly his parachute battalion, which he praised highly. He returned thus to the question of 12 additional C-47s. This led to a discussion of the present maintenance arrangements for C-47s, with General Katahmi noting that the present basic maintenance performed in Europe was extremely slow. The Secretary agreed that "we must work this out". General Katahmi referred to the low flying time of transport pilots and the short time available for parachute training, and to the difficulty of keeping an adequate number of aircraft in service at one time.

The Shah expressed satisfaction at the inclusion of Item 6 (2 inshore minesweepers). The Secretary took the occasion to note that we believed we must cancel the presently proposed two patrol frigates. The Shah expressed unhappiness at this, saying that "if it is vitally necessary, we must find a way". The Secretary noted, however, that in the event of any extensive naval engagement in the Persian Gulf, the issue would not be decided by Iranian naval forces, and Mr. Bundy noted the U.S. flotilla at Bahrain.

Responding to the Shah's reiterated concern on C-47s, the Secretary agreed to look at this question.

On the air base question, the Shah queried whether it would be desirable to extend the Tabriz airfield. General Katahmi thought this would not be necessary since the proposed new aircraft would have a 1200 mile range.

The Shah, the Secretary, and General Lemnitzer all joined in stressing the key importance of early warning. The Secretary made clear that we would need to consult with the British, but that we had in mind a substantial additional effort. Specific locations were not discussed.

This completed the discussion of the list. The Shah then related the shortcomings of his armed forces, quoting extensively from a paper (Tab C to the original of this memorandum)/3/ purporting to be a r[sum[ of CENTO findings concerning the Iranian armed forces. This alluded to specific shortages of rifles, automatic rifles, transport for heavy guns and heavy weapons, and maintenance. The artillery situation, however, was judged to be "operable".

/3/Not attached to the source text.

The Shah then raised a specific question whether the M-47 tanks held by Iran would continue to be supportable. The Secretary responded emphatically that we did have adequate spare parts and supplies on hand for the foreseeable future and could, if necessary, manufacture more. He noted that we had collaborated only last November with the Italians on arrangements to rehabilitate and furnish the M-47 to Italy. This appeared to surprise and somewhat relieve the Shah.

At the conclusion of the discussion, the Shah briefly produced Iranian estimates of the situation of the armed forces of Turkey, Iraq and Afghanistan. These were stated to be the province of General Afkahmi, and the Shah briefly renewed key points (which appeared to be in rough agreement with our own estimates), and indicated that General Afkahmi would wish to discuss these further in his Pentagon appointments the following day.

The conversation, which had commenced at about 3:10 was concluded at 5:00 o'clock on a friendly note. Secretary McNamara asked for the return of the discussion lists of equipment deliveries, indicating that we proposed to present this to the Shah in the form of a memorandum of understanding prior to his departure.

William P. Bundy/4/

/4/Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.

245. Memorandum of Conversation

Washington, April 13, 1962, 8:30 a.m.

/1/Source: Department of State, Central Files, 788.11/4-1362. Confidential. Drafted by Harriman.

The Shah of Iran
W. Averell Harriman

I had breakfast alone with the Shah at 8:30. He seemed pleased with the contacts he had had, including of course his talks with the President, but somewhat unhappy in his discussions in the Pentagon. He wants more aircraft. He said that if the decision was made because we didn't have the money, that was one thing. If it was made for strategic reasons, he felt he should get the additional aircraft. When I told him that the Pentagon had been much impressed with the Shah's own military knowledge, he said, "Well, that's natural--I have military training". He said he himself was much impressed with the knowledge of Secretary of Defense McNamara, who, he pointed out, had only been in the Defense Department a short time.

He said he was hopeful that real land reform would now be forthcoming in Iran, and that following the financial stabilization period through which they were going, the country could again expand its industry. Unemployment was increasing because of the stabilization program.

I emphasized to him the importance we placed on his economic development program, as well as his improving his own position with the intellectuals and students in Tehran. I expressed the point of view that his security was based on the support of the United States, not his own military establishment. His greatest danger came from communist infiltration, rather than overt military attack. He took this in good part, and discussed his hopes in the field of economic development. He mentioned the Lilienthal development in the Karun valley.

He asked many questions about world affairs, such as the situation between the Soviet Union and Red China, and other developments in Asia. I tried to leave at 9:15, as I knew he had an engagement at 9:30, but he kept me until nearly a quarter to ten. He seemed anxious to talk over all the matters that were on his mind, both domestic and international.

He told me he was going to be in The Hague on May 1st and asked whether it would be helpful for him to mention the West New Guinea question to the Dutch Government. I said I thought it might be helpful and agreed to let him know, through his Ambassador in Washington, just what the situation was at the time of his arrival. I underlined how important we felt a peaceful settlement was to the future of Indonesia and I explained the pressure the Soviet Union was putting on Sukarno to use force in which event the Soviets and Red Chinese would give Indonesia assistance whereas we would of course express strong opposition to an aggressive act in the Security Council.

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