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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 > Nixon-Ford Administrations > Volume V
Foreign Relations, 1969-1976, Volume V, United Nations, 1969-1972
Released by the Office of the Historian

High-Level Meetings; Miscellaneous Issues

12. Memorandum From the Representative to the United Nations (Yost) to President Nixon/1/

New York, August 11, 1969.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 296, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. II. Confidential.

With reference to our brief conversation at Camp David concerning the address which you might wish to deliver at the opening of the United Nations General Assembly next month,/2/ I am submitting herewith a list of themes with which, if you do make the speech, you might wish to deal.

/2/ No record of this meeting was found. A May 16 memorandum from Yost to the President recommended that he address the UN General Assembly. (Ibid., Box 295, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. I) On August 23 Secretary Rogers informed Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs De Palma that the President was interested in addressing the General Assembly on September 18. Foreign Ministers attending the session would be encouraged to meet with either Rogers or Yost in New York rather than with the President in Washington. (Ibid.)

The content of your remarks on each theme you select would presumably depend on the course of events and the development of policy on the relevant issues up to that time. The traditional date for the delivery of the US address is the first morning of the general debate (the third day of the session), which this year will be September 18.

I should very much hope that you would decide to make this address, first, because it has been traditional since 1945 for American Presidents to address the United Nations in the first year of their Administration and your absence would therefore be remarked, but more important, because the UN General Assembly would provide a unique sounding board for a statement of your goals and policies in the foreign field. If you should have new initiatives to announce appropriate to this forum, that would of course be particularly useful; President Eisenhower’s "Atoms for Peace" proposal to the UN had a great impact. However, even if there were no new initiatives which were relevant and which were ripe for announcement next month, your appearance would nevertheless be most desirable. Most speeches by heads of state or government in the general debate are devoted to setting forth their government’s policy on the main issues before the Assembly. President Eisenhower spoke to the Assembly along these lines three times after his initial appearance, and other Presidents have done likewise.

The following will be the principal issues before the Assembly, with some or all of which you might wish to deal:

1. Disarmament This is the issue to which the Assembly traditionally devotes most attention. Discussion revolves around but is not confined to the report of the Geneva Disarmament Committee. This year that Committee will not have concrete recommendations to make and this failure will give rise to considerable criticism. Whatever you might be able to say either on matters that will be dealt with in the Committee’s report, such as control of biological and chemical warfare or of military uses of the seabed, or on our objectives in the SALT negotiations, or on any other arms control topics, will be very useful.

2. UN Peacekeeping Negotiations are proceeding slowly but perceptibly to strengthen the capability of the UN to deal with international conflict, particularly in the Third World. We might indicate our support of this process in general terms or by expressing willingness to contribute, proportionately with others, to a "Peace Fund", designed to finance the initial stage of such operations.

3. Quality of the Environment This is a subject, as you know, of increasing international concern, about which you have already urged concerted action by our NATO allies. I made it the main theme of my speech to the UN Economic and Social Council in July (copy attached)./3/ An indication of your interest and support in the UN context would be particularly timely and welcome.

/3/ Attached but not printed.

4. Second Development Decade The question of the US contribution, through trade and aid, to development is a difficult and delicate one because of the increasingly reluctant attitude of the Congress and because some of the relevant policies of your Administration are still under review. However, you have proposed to the Congress increased appropriations for multilateral aid through the UN and your intentions in this respect will be heartening to this audience.

5. Population You may wish to stress your conviction of the vital importance of dealing urgently with this problem, from the standpoint of development, environmental quality and the maintenance of peace.

6. Middle East This will no doubt be a main theme of debate in the GA, as well as of negotiation behind the scenes. A reemphasis of your determination to exert the full influence of the US to bring about a settlement would be most timely.

7. Southern Africa Our attitude toward human rights self-determination in this area is another very delicate one because Black African feeling is so strong and yet there is so little that can be realistically done. I would not recommend your dealing with this subject at length but it should be touched on.

8. Vietnam This subject is not on the Assembly’s agenda and agitation about it has considerably declined as a result of the Paris negotiations and the policies you announced in your May 14 speech. Nevertheless, as the largest war in progress, it continues to cause deep concern at the UN and a brief restatement of your policies directed to the Assembly would be most helpful.

9. Era of Negotiation A reiteration of the theme of your Inaugural Address would be eminently suited to the UN forum and could indeed most appropriately be the main thread running through your whole presentation.

I would suggest that the address be about forty-five minutes in length, though there is no fixed practice in this regard./4/

/4/ President Nixon addressed the 24th Session of the UN General Assembly on September 18, 1969. His address is printed in Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Richard Nixon, 1969, pp. 724–731.

Charles W. Yost

13. Memorandum of Conversation/1/

New York, September 18, 1969, noon.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 291, Agency Files, USUN. Secret; Nodis. Drafted on September 19 by Yost. A September 23 covering memorandum from Executive Secretary Eliot to Kissinger bears a handwritten note indicating that Kissinger approved the memorandum of conversation on September 25.


New York, September, 1969

President Nixon’s Courtesy Call on the Secretary-General


The President
Secretary Rogers
Dr. Henry A. Kissinger
Ambassador Charles W. Yost

The Secretary-General
Dr. Ralph Bunche

The Secretary-General expressed warm appreciation for the President’s willingness to speak to the United Nations General Assembly and thus to demonstrate in this tangible and emphatic way his support of the institution.

The SYG presented the President with a folder of United Nations stamps, and also with a memorandum urging early ratification of the United Nations Privileges and Immunities Convention. He explained that he had occasion to raise this subject a number of times in the past, that the present situation is anomalous in that a Third Secretary of the Burmese Mission to the United Nations, for example, is immune to prosecution whereas the SYG and his senior collaborators are not, and that he would greatly appreciate it if the President would find it possible to correct this anomaly. Secretary Rogers and Mr. Yost commented that the subject is under active consideration in the U.S. Government. The Secretary noted that, as a matter of fact, for many years no one had been prosecuted for the sort of activity covered in the Convention. The President commented that he nevertheless recognizes the symbolic importance of the matter but noted that the attitude of the Congress toward it is not clear.

The SYG then turned to a rather lengthy exposition of his views in regard to the significance of elections in Viet Nam. He pointed out that in a somewhat analogous situation in Burma just after the war, when every village had a supply of arms, theoretically free elections were held but in fact the government obtained 100% of the votes in villages it controlled while the Communists obtained 100% of the votes in the villages they controlled. The SYG feared that the outcome of elections held in Viet Nam under present circumstances would be much the same and would not in fact reflect the free choice of the people.

He thought that a more profitable course would be to establish in South Viet Nam a broadly-based coalition government, which after some interval for the reduction of tensions might more successfully carry out such elections. While he did not specify on this occasion whether or not he would suggest the Communists be included in such a government, he has on previous occasions indicated that they should not. He suggested as the sort of person who might play a prominent role in such a government "Big" Minh, who he felt is highly regarded by most elements throughout South Viet Nam and yet is definitely not a Communist. The SYG pointed out that 80 or 90% of the voters in South East Asia vote for leaders, whom they consider "good" or "bad", rather than for parties or ideologies.

The President replied that he is very conscious of the difficulties of conducting fair elections under present circumstances in Viet Nam where arms are so widely held. It is for this reason that we have suggested that elections be supervised by an international body. What we have in mind moreover is not a small body but a large one, composed for the most part of Asians but with all points of view, including Communists and neutralists, represented. He would be pleased if it could be agreed that the UN might carry out this responsibility. He would hope that in this way the fairness of the elections might be assured.

He went on to say, however, that it should be clearly recognized that the United States has, since the cessation of bombing of the North, made a whole series of forthcoming proposals, which he had just reiterated in his speech, but that there has been so far no response from the other side, public or private, except a demand for total U.S. withdrawal and capitulation. It might be that the other side believes political pressures inside the United States will ultimately compel us to withdraw unconditionally. He wished to assure the SYG most solemnly that this would not be the case. He would under no circumstances yield to political pressures of this kind. Indeed it would be disastrous for many reasons if the United States should simply pull out of Viet Nam, not least of which would be that the effect on American public opinion would probably be such as to lead to almost complete U.S. withdrawal from world affairs. The President indicated that, on the other hand, the United States is prepared to discuss any settlement which would provide for self-determination in South Viet Nam and would wholly withdraw as a part of such a settlement.

There was some discussion as to whether the death of Ho Chi Minh would change the policy of Hanoi. The SYG expressed the view that since Ho had been "gaga" for the last year or two and the government had during that time been largely in the hands of others, principally Pham Van Dong and General Giap, there is unlikely to be any change in the near future. The President pointed out, however, that Ho had been a charismatic figure, popular throughout the whole of Viet Nam in a way that no other Northern leader was, and that this might make a difference. The SYG agreed that this might well be the case.

As time was drawing short, Secretary Rogers said that he would be very happy to continue the discussion of Viet Nam with the SYG at any time and explain the U.S. position in more detail.

The meeting ended on a warm note of mutual regard and reiteration by the SYG of appreciation for the President’s presence and his speech.

14. Memorandum From the Executive Secretary of the Department of State (Eliot) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, December 9, 1969.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 296, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. II. Confidential. A December 15 covering memorandum from Winston Lord to Kissinger cited three issues that would require early White House attention: visits of heads of state or government, the Presidential Commission for the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations, and the World Youth Assembly. The memorandum bears handwritten notes by Kissinger about two of the three. Concerning the Presidential Commission, he wrote: "Can we get terms of reference and recommendations?" Concerning the World Youth Assembly, he wrote: "Let’s write up issues and get a decision."

25th Anniversary of the United Nations

The following notes are responsive to Mr. Lord’s recent request for information on developments in connection with the United Nations’ 25th Anniversary. The Department is working on appropriate recommendations to the President regarding such of these matters as require his decision.

1. Visits of Heads of State or Government. The UN 25th Anniversary resolution (copy enclosed)/2/ "expresses the hope that as many Heads of State or Government as possible will be able to participate in the commemorative session" and it is likely that a considerable number will take advantage of this invitation.

/2/ None of the enclosures is printed. Only Enclosure 1, the text of the resolution commemorating the 25th anniversary, was attached. Enclosures 2 and 3 are ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1967–69, UN 30. Enclosure 4, Ambassador Yost’s October 23 address to the UN General Assembly, is printed in Department of State Bulletin, December 1, 1969, pp. 485–489.

This of course raised the question of the President’s participation and in due course decisions will be needed on such matters as whether and for how long he may go to New York, whether he will address the commemorative session, what contacts with or representational functions for the other Heads of State or Government he may have, and what to do about the inevitable desires of some of these personalities to combine their visits to New York with visits to Washington. We have already had one informal inquiry of this kind on behalf of Ceausescu (copy enclosed). Pending firm decisions on these matters, we have given Embassy Bucharest an interim reply (copy enclosed).

2. Presidential Commission for the 25th Anniversary. The UN 25th Anniversary Preparatory Committee suggested "that Governments might wish to consider establishment of national committees for the purpose of coordinating all national activities relating to the anniversary in their respective countries."

We share Ambassador Yost’s belief that a Presidential Commission of perhaps a dozen leading citizens should be appointed pursuant to this suggestion. Such a Commission would be very important to the nourishment of concerned and constructive public interest in the UN and what it does for peace and progress. Membership, size and composition, organization, financial implications, details of activity, etc. would have to be worked out. Experience with a similar Presidential Commission for the observance of Human Rights Year 1968 was very favorable.

3. Opportunity for improving the UN image and effectiveness. Both in the President’s address to the General Assembly on September 18, 1969 and in Ambassador Yost’s statement in the debate on the 25th Anniversary resolution (copy enclosed) certain possibilities of constructive exploitation of the anniversary were raised. We are hopeful that the occasion can be utilized both to inspire the UN to greater purpose, direction and effectiveness and to improve its public image in the United States. Ambassador Yost and his Mission are planning to give priority attention to these matters as soon as the current General Assembly adjourns later this month. We in the Department are setting up special machinery for the same purpose. One of the most complicated and important of the projects to be tied in with the Anniversary is the adoption of a plan for the Second Development Decade of the seventies. Other subjects mentioned in the Anniversary Resolution include a "Disarmament Decade," the 10th Anniversary of the "anti-colonialism declaration," an appeal for additional accessions to multilateral instruments supported by the United Nations, etc.

4. World Youth Assembly. In its Anniversary Resolution the General Assembly decided to convene a World Youth Assembly (WYA), currently scheduled to be held in New York July 9–18, 1970, to which each Member Government is to send up to five youth delegates (preferably not over age 25). The 25th Anniversary Preparatory Committee recommends that "Member States may consider merely conveying the names of youth representatives selected by appropriate national bodies . . . on the basis of participation of all major youth organizations of the given country." Also, "the youth delegation will attend the meeting as representatives of either their specific youth group or as delegates from their Government. They would not be under the instructions of their Government. . . ."

There is already some American youth interest and activity in connection with the World Youth Assembly and we are taking appropriate action to ensure that US participation is representative and responsible.

5. Presidential UN Day Proclamation. The United Nations Association/USA and other private organizations are planning special anniversary events and activities. It would be helpful to their efforts and appropriate to the anniversary year if the President’s traditional UN Day Proclamation could be issued earlier than the usual late summer date.

6. Congressional Resolution. There is some Congressional interest in passing a joint congratulatory resolution early in 1970. The Department will be in appropriate consultation with Congressional leaders interested in this project.

7. Coordinators for 25th Anniversary. As the date draws closer, events and developments connected with the 25th Anniversary will undoubtedly involve the interests of a wide range of offices in the Department, the rest of the Executive branch, Congress and private organizations. We have therefore felt it desirable to establish a central point of coordination in International Organization Affairs for these activities and have obtained the temporary assignment of a senior officer, Ambassador James K. Penfield, to assume this responsibility. Similarly, the Second Development Decade planning will have broad ramifications and the coordinating responsibility for this aspect of the Anniversary will be the full-time responsibility of another senior officer, Mr. Jacques J. Reinstein.

Robert L. Brown/3/

/3/ Brown signed for Eliot above Eliot’s typed signature.

15. Memorandum From Winston Lord of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, February 25, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 297, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. III. Confidential. Sent for action.

Your February 26 Luncheon with Under Secretary Richardson: United Nations

I strongly recommend that you take up the subject of the United Nations and preparations for the observance of its 25th Anniversary with Under Secretary Richardson at this week’s regular Thursday lunch.

Several Anniversary proposals involving Presidential commitments have just converged, and it would be useful to sort out your thinking and that of Richardson and Rogers in order to advise the President. (These matters are discussed below.) In addition, I think you should express White House interest that we develop a coherent U.S. approach to the United Nations this year and mark the Anniversary with significant American initiatives. Finally, you could discuss the nature of the Presidential Commission that the President has just approved in principle (Tab A)/2/ and urged that State move quickly on its establishment.

/2/ Attached but not printed. This February 24 memorandum from Kissinger to Secretary Rogers noted that the President had approved in principle Rogers’ recommendation that he appoint a Presidential Commission for the observance of the UN 25th Anniversary.

The major questions for early Presidential decision involve possible speeches/appearances and meetings with Secretary General U Thant.

Possible Presidential Speeches. I assume that, as I urged in my memorandum to you concerning the Presidential Commission, the President is no longer considering an early statement on the UN, the Commission being his only initiative at this time. There are now two prospective forums for a major UN speech:

Mid-September New York. Secretary Rogers plans to speak to the President personally about the importance of his going to New York for the opening of the UN General Assembly’s 25th session which will include many visiting heads of state in September and October.

Late June San Francisco. We have also gotten advance notice from Hugh Sloan (Tab B)/3/ that the President will be invited to go to San Francisco on Friday, June 26 to speak at ceremonies connected with the United Nations’ founding there. That would be a very appealing ceremonial gesture by the President, and he may wish to do it for a variety of reasons. However, it should not preempt the much more important September address to the General Assembly. Major substantive proposals should be reserved for that occasion and indeed will not be ready until then. (We envisage the Commission’s making its recommendations by July 30.)

/3/ Tabs B, C, and D were not attached.

Meetings with Secretary General U Thant. Secretary Rogers has recommended that the President decline an invitation by U Thant to have lunch with him in New York on June 29 (Tab C).

In addition, Congressman Bradford Morse, Chairman of the Members of Congress for Peace through Law, has just written the President on behalf of 73 of his colleagues urging that the Secretary General be invited to pay a State Visit to Washington during the week of June 22 just prior to the San Francisco commemoration. They also suggest that U Thant address a joint session of the Congress. (The letter is at Tab D.) Paralleling this initiative, I have just received an informal feeler from a member of the United Nations office here in Washington that U Thant be invited by the President to Washington, although he indicated that this need not be a State Visit.

My own view is that the President could invite U Thant to lunch in late June on the latter’s way to San Francisco with the two purposes being: (1) to underline U.S. support of the United Nations and to mark its 25th Anniversary; and (2) for the President to receive the Secretary General’s views on the future of the UN in order to help develop a United States position in conjunction with the Presidential Commission recommendations which he would be receiving the following month. Other events, such as a Congressional reception, could also be arranged. This would be a very helpful gesture by the President and would assist him in shaping American initiatives for the General Assembly. It would at the same time avoid the time consumption and political problems of a State Visit and an address to Congress.

Possible Scenario

In sum, without having a feel for the President’s or your thoughts on these questions, I am recommending the following scenario:

–Launch the Presidential Commission sometime in March.

–Invite U Thant for an official visit and luncheon, but not a State Visit, on his way to San Francisco the week of June 22.

–Either a strictly ceremonial visit by the President at the San Francisco convocation June 26 or the sending of a Presidential message.

–Decline U Thant’s lunch invitation in New York June 29.

–A major Presidential speech with American initiatives at the September opening of the General Assembly, based on his Commission’s and State’s mid-summer recommendations and his June conversation with U Thant.

I hope that you can discuss these matters with Richardson and then give me guidance on whether and how to prepare a memorandum for the President. Alternatively, you may wish to take these subjects up verbally with the President, perhaps in conjunction with Secretary Rogers./4/

/4/ A follow-up memorandum from Lord to Kissinger, dated March 12, sought confirmation that he and Richardson had agreed on President Nixon’s participation in UN 25th Anniversary commemorative activities. Kissinger initialed that he had done so, but added at the bottom: "Not really„minimum Pres participation. He will not go to S. Francisco." (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 297, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. III)

16. Memorandum From Winston Lord of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/
Washington, April 12, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 297, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. III. Confidential. Sent for action. Copies were sent to Haig, Peter Rodman (without attachments), and William Watts.

United Nations 25th Anniversary Matters

This will bring you up to date on matters related to the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations and in particular alert you to the problems that have arisen with regard to names for a Presidential Commission.

Presidential Invitations

The President has basically accepted your and Secretary Rogers’ recommendations concerning Presidential activities (Tab A)./2/ He is declining U Thant’s invitation to a June 29 lunch in New York and Mayor Alioto’s invitation to San Francisco for the commemoration ceremonies June 24–26. He has decided to hold a stag, black-tie dinner, including Congressmen, at the White House for U Thant on the latter’s way to San Francisco on June 24 (you had suggested a lunch or a meeting). Peter Rodman and I are sorting out the various actions required to implement the President’s decisions. With regard to the dinner, Dwight Chapin has asked for a scenario and proposed guest list. We are getting State’s needed help on this by phone only (De Palma), saying that the President’s decision is still tentative and should be closely held. No one is to notify U Thant or anyone else until we have a clearer idea of how the dinner should shape up.

/2/ Memorandum from Dwight L. Chapin to Kissinger, April 8; attached but not printed.

Presidential Commission

You will recall that Ambassador Yost sent you a letter which suggested additions and deletions to the list of Commission candidates that Secretary Rogers proposed; Yost was unhappy with some of the changes in the list that had been made in the political review process at State. Per your instructions, I have taken no action on Ambassador Yost’s suggestions and only sent Mr. Flemming’s office the official names sent over by Rogers. At Tab B is a comparative listing of the Rogers and Yost recommendations./3/

/3/ Tab B is attached but not printed. The list is dated March 25. Yost’s letter to Kissinger is dated March 23.

In the past week or two Mr. Flemming and, I believe, Mr. Dent and perhaps others have been going over the Rogers list and have come up with a brand new version which is at Tab C./4/ I don’t know whether Flanigan has been involved. Almost nothing remains of the Rogers recommendations: 26 of the 32 original names, including proposed Chairman Earl Warren, have been stricken. Flemming’s staff told me that the Rogers list had too many Democrats and tired names, and they were frankly anxious to reward many faithful Republicans and financial contributors. They have thus completely emasculated Rogers’ list and loaded the Commission with people who are either unknown, know little about the UN, or are hostile to it.

/4/ Attached but not printed.

Everyone recognizes that some political massaging is required, but the resulting list is disastrous. It has almost no recognized UN experts–yet the Commission must have a hard core of experts if it is to produce substantive proposals for the President in time for a possible September speech at the UN. It is almost totally Republican–yet the United Nations has always been a bipartisan issue in the U.S.

Flemming’s people, without checking with us, put together this list and sent it to State and Yost for their comments. The latter are predictably unhappy. Yost has just appealed to Rogers, who has promised "to do something."

I have remained completely aloof from this political game, only keeping informed as best I could. I told Flemming’s staff man on a personal basis that his latest list was sure to displease State. And I have made clear to State that you have not been involved and have been out of town much of the time.

I do not know whether and how you wish to move on this. One outcome could be for State/Yost and the White House political people to hammer out a compromise list which we would then put together with the rest of the package on the Commission to forward to the President. However, you may wish to take a more active role. Rogers may call you in any event. He might even go to the President who, of course, knows only that he has approved the Commission in principle and has asked for names and a scenario.

I see three options:/5/

/5/ None of the options was checked or initialed.

(1) Call Rogers or Richardson
(2) Call Flanigan or Flemming
(3) Sit tight until State makes a move

I recommend (1), perhaps followed by (2).

17. Memorandum From Winston Lord and Peter Rodman of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, June 3, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Confidential. Sent for action.

Presidential Commission for the United Nations/2/

/2/ President Nixon announced the establishment of the President’s Commission for the Observance of the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations on July 9. Executive Order 11546 establishing the Commission and a list of members are printed in Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, July 13, 1970, pp. 922–923.

Here is the latest dismal status report on this subject, on which we call Flemming’s office every few days.

Chairman. This apparently will be Henry Cabot Lodge, who we are told has accepted. We do not know if Flemming is aware of Lodge’s upcoming Vatican assignment and did not mention it because of its sensitivity. Obviously Lodge thinks he can handle both jobs, although we do not know how the UN Commission has been presented to him in terms of work load. As matters now stand, he would have to be in Rome just about the time the Commission would be getting underway.

Clearance Process. Flemming’s office says that "they hope to complete this sometime next weekî. There are apparently a couple of slots still to fill. When reminded of the need to work through Timmons to line up the eight Congressional members, they admitted they had not started to do this yet and said they would begin now. They still show little sense of urgency. (The clearance process usually takes three weeks–next week will make it five weeks since they received the revised compromise list of Rogers which you endorsed. Time lost during the month of April was due to the fact that Flemming’s office had erased 90% of the original State list and a compromise was clearly needed.)

Forwarding to the President. Flemming’s office will forward the eventual list to the President but has promised that we will get a copy so that we can forward your memorandum concerning the proposed scenario for announcement, executive order, etc. at the same time.

There are two main problems. First, because of the many lost weeks, very little time remains for the Commission to fulfill its first function, that of submitting an interim report to the President for him to draw upon for U.S. initiatives at the September General Assembly. The executive order calls for this report by July 30–this will have to be slipped to August 15, which still will give the Commission less than two months to do this job. (State has been preparing proposals and studies for the Commission to draw upon.) Second, the Commission membership will not be distinguished. Even the Rogers compromise was a comedown; we do not know what further slippage has occurred the past few weeks.

These two problems prompted Ambassador Yost to make a request through State to have a quick look at the final list before it goes to the President in order to see whether the whole project might better be scrapped. (Attached is an earlier memo to you on this subject which I don’t believe you have seen./3/ This memo also points out that Pete Vaky has had similar problems with the Flemming operation.) We are probably too far along to drop the Commission idea at this point, but the idea is not an unreasonable one.

/3/ Attached but not printed.


A call to Flemming by you or General Haig might save a few days, clarify Mr. Lodge’s responsibilities, and reinsure that we see the final Commission list before it goes to the President./4/

/4/ None of the options is checked or initialed.

HAK to call
Haig to call

18. Memorandum of Conversation/1/

Washington, July 10, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Confidential. Kissinger initialed his approval of the memorandum of conversation on an attached memorandum from Marshall Wright, dated August 12.

The President
U Thant
Under Secretary Bunche
Ambassador Yost
Dr. Kissinger

Much of the conversation was taken up by discussion of the Middle East. The President emphasized our desire for a peaceful settlement, remarking that he was not too sure that the Soviets were equally interested in bringing about a cooling-off period. He referred to the increased Soviet military presence in Egypt as a most hazardous factor since the Israelis were bound to react if the creeping advance toward the Suez Canal continued. If a confrontation resulted and the Israelis asked for more U.S. assistance, we would find ourselves morally committed.

The Secretary General said that when he had been in Moscow, Kosygin had emphasized to him the Soviet desire for a peaceful settlement. The latest Soviet formulation on peace had represented a great concession which had been hard to squeeze out of the UAR.

The conversation ranged over the general question of what could be done to improve the UN’s contribution to peace. The Secretary General mentioned peacekeeping and Ambassador Yost remarked that we were still waiting for some important word from Moscow.

The President spoke warmly about the need for multilateralism in the economic and social aid field and assured the Secretary General of our support. He stated flatly that we want to move more into that field, and he added that of course there are difficulties to overcome with our Congress, e.g., in the field of appropriations for the UNDP where we had gone in for $100 million and would be lucky to get as much as we had last year. However, we hoped to do more next year. The President also remarked on the disadvantages of bilateralism in the matter of foreign aid.

With respect to visiting New York in connection with the 25th UN General Assembly, the President did not commit himself although he said he would "sympathetically consider" going. He said he was not sure of his schedule yet. The Secretary General suggested that the President come during the commemorative week in October. The President remarked that he might come at that time but that it would be difficult, and Ambassador Yost commented that another possibility would be for the President to come in September. The President said if he were to come he would expect to see a number of foreign leaders, which is always time-consuming ("half an hour if you speak the same language, otherwise an hour"). He supposed he would have to be there two days. U Thant referred to indications that some thirty leaders would be coming.

At one point in the conversation Mr. Bunche remarked that if the situation deteriorated further (presumably referring to the Middle East), there might have to be a meeting "at the top". The President said he was willing to do anything useful to avert a crisis, but on the whole he was not a great believer in summit meetings unless they could accomplish something. If a meeting raised hopes which were subsequently dashed, this would be worse than if no meeting were held at all.

19. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rogers to President Nixon/1/

Washington, August 6, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Confidential. At the top of the memorandum are the handwritten initials ñHKî.

Your Attendance at the UN General Assembly Session

I believe it would be useful for you to attend some portion of the UN General Assembly session this fall. By doing so, you would demonstrate our support for the UN during its 25th Anniversary year. You would also be able to see a relatively large number of Chiefs of State and Heads of Government in New York, if you wished, thereby minimizing the claims on your time from such leaders. A working group, chaired by a member of my staff and including White House members, is considering alternative approaches for your possible attendance and your meetings with foreign leaders. At this point, I want to outline what we now know about the plans for the General Assembly session and to describe some of the possibilities for your attendance.

Dates for Your Possible Attendance

If you attend the session, the best time would be during the week preceding the formal termination of the commemorative period on Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24. Although there would be certain advantages to your attendance during the General Debate in mid-September–a major speech would be appropriate during these substantive discussions–the commemorative period would offer a better opportunity to meet and entertain foreign leaders and thus would head off individual requests for meetings in Washington. Our current information indicates that many more foreign leaders will be coming in October than for the General Debate. Additionally, the focus of this year’s session will be on the commemorative period and there will be greater public exposure given to it.

Arrangements for the Commemorative Celebration

Although plans for the commemorative celebration are not yet firm, about a week up to and including Friday, October 23 will probably be devoted to speeches by visiting leaders. Our delegation has put in a claim for the second spot on Friday afternoon (following Haile Selassie) but this could probably be switched to the morning hours, if you desire. We have made no commitment as to who might speak. If you attend, you might also wish to offer a dinner Friday evening for Chiefs of State and Heads of Government. The present plans for Saturday, October 24 consist of speeches by the Secretary General and the President of the General Assembly, a musical offering and a ceremony during which a Declaration will be signed by those present. A problem could arise if the Declaration agreed upon turns out to be inappropriate for your signature, but there are no present indications that it will.

Your Meetings with Foreign Leaders

A list of those leaders expected to attend as of August 3 is enclosed./2/ Upwards of 40 leaders will probably attend, most of them during the late October commemorative period. We have considered various ways to handle your meetings with Chiefs of State and Heads of Government attending the UNGA session. None of these is completely satisfactory, and all depend on the amount of time you will be able to spend in New York. We will want to minimize demands on your time, while avoiding, to the extent possible, bruised feelings on the part of foreign leaders with whom you will not be able to meet individually. The principal alternatives are the following:

/2/ The attached list of heads of state and government who were expected to attend the 25th UN General Assembly is not printed.

1. If you attend Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24, you could have major bilateral meetings with a limited number of leaders of special importance (such as Heath, Pompidou, Trudeau, Sato, Golda Meir, should they attend, in addition to calls on the President of the General Assembly and the Secretary General) on Friday morning and afternoon. You could deliver your speech either Friday morning or afternoon and give a dinner that evening for all Chiefs of State and Heads of Government. Saturday morning you could attend the commemorative ceremony and depart in the afternoon.

2. Alternatively, in addition to the major bilateral meetings, you might wish to have brief meetings with a number of leaders–in effect courtesy calls lasting from five to fifteen minutes. This would, however, make your schedule quite tight if you attend only Friday and part of Saturday. You could still deliver your speech, offer a dinner and attend the commemorative ceremony.

3. A third possibility is to schedule no bilateral meetings in New York, only the delivery of your address and the dinner on Friday, and the Saturday ceremony.

4. If you were able to devote more time than Friday and Saturday, the most desirable plan would be to have both major bilateral meetings and a larger number of brief meetings in New York in addition to the speech, dinner, and the Saturday ceremony.

In the coming weeks we will be receiving more information about the foreign leaders who will attend the UNGA session. When that is available, I will make specific recommendations regarding your attendance at the UN. A key factor will of course be the level of Soviet attendance and whether it will appear desirable for you to have a meeting with Kosygin if he should attend.

William P. Rogers

20. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, undated.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Confidential. Sent for action. An attached memorandum of transmittal to Kissinger from Marshall Wright is dated August 17. Another attached memorandum from Dwight Chapin to Haig, dated September 9, gives a date of August 25 for the Kissinger–Nixon memorandum. According to the Chapin–Haig memorandum, "The President has approved it only as a start for a general approach to the UN plan„he has not approved either of the two check-off items in the plan specifically. In other words, the President thought it looked okay, but we have no final approval in any way, shape, or form."

Your Attendance at the UN General Assembly Session

You have agreed in principle to go to New York for the celebration of the UN’s 25th birthday. Although the list of attendees is not yet complete, it is already evident that New York will have, during the week of October 24, one of the largest gatherings of Heads of State in history. We now expect between 30 and 40. We have a delicate problem of dealing with the sensibilities of so many heads of government and their many requests for personal meetings with you. This memo seeks your tentative approval of a scenario for handling the problem.

We want to avoid the hurt feelings and invidious comparisons that would result from your seeing some of your opposite numbers and having no contact at all with others. We therefore recommend that you host either a Reception or a State Dinner for all Heads of State in New York. This will permit personal contact and a photo of a smiling handshake with even the least of your opposite numbers. It will also be a near-unique occasion, and should get heavy press coverage just prior to the November elections.

Longer substantive meetings will be necessary with the more important Heads of Government. As of now, "probables" in this category include Heath, Haile Selassie, and Sato. Kosygin is a possibility, as is Golda Meir. French attendance is undecided. I think we can hold the number of longer meetings to a maximum of 5 or 6.

In addition to these "principals", there is another category who will expect and have a claim for at least a brief private meeting with you. Twenty or thirty minutes should suffice. Examples are Souvanna Phouma, Julius Nyerere, Lee Kwan Yew, Yahya, etc. I think we can hold it down to five or six.

To accomplish all this with grace, and without inflicting on yourself an inhuman schedule, you will need about 48 hours in New York. You are already scheduled to be in New York on the evening of October 21 for the Al Smith Dinner. The easiest way of handling this UN-related chore is simply to stay in New York for the next two days, returning to Washington on the morning of Saturday, October 24. In addition to the activities described above, this will permit you to make a speech to the General Assembly on Friday afternoon. We are at work on a philosophical and somewhat inspirational 15-minute draft for this occasion.

There is no need to make specific decisions now on precisely whom you would receive for either the long or short meetings. We can do that best when we have firmer information on who is coming. We will be mindful of the high necessity of protecting your time, and it may be that we will be able to drop part of this schedule at the end.

If you accept the recommendation below, we will keep your decision strictly secret, do all of the planning on a tentative basis, and come back to you for final approval. Tab A is an illustrative schedule. Tab B is a list of the Heads of State who have indicated their plans. Tab C is an information memo to you from Secretary Rogers on this subject./2/

/2/ Tabs A, B, and C are attached but not printed.


That you agree for planning purposes to proceed to New York on the evening of Wednesday, October 21st and return to Washington on the morning of Saturday, October 24./3/

/3/ The approve and disapprove options are neither checked nor initialed.

21. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, August 19, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Secret; Nodis. Sent for action.

U Thant’s Maneuvering for a "Summit Meeting" in New York

It is now perfectly obvious that U Thant is maneuvering for a "big four summit meeting" in New York in connection with the UN’s 25th birthday in late October. The evidence is:

1. A series of press stories from New York last week quoting an authoritative UN source to the effect that a summit meeting between Nixon and Kosygin was expected in connection with the expected presence of both for the UN birthday celebration.

2. President Pompidou’s principal assistant told our Chargé in Paris (Tab A)/2/ that Pompidou had received an invitation from U Thant to attend a "big four ceremony and dinner" in New York in late October. U Thant’s letter to Pompidou indicated that Kosygin and Heath have already accepted and President Nixon would "probably accept".

/2/ Telegram 10995 from Paris, August 18; attached but not printed.

3. A UN official, during the course of a courtesy call today on a State Department official, casually said that U Thant intends to give a dinner for the four Heads of State on Thursday, October 22 (Tab B)./3/

/3/ Telegram 136473 to USUN, October 21; attached but not printed.

4. A telegram in today from Moscow (Tab C) reports that the Soviets "seem to be evincing some interest in a possible summit meeting . . . in New York" in October./4/

/4/ Telegram 4653 from Moscow, August 18; attached but not printed.

I am not aware of any invitation from U Thant to our President for this occasion, and I assume none has been received. If that is correct, I also assume that U Thant is trying to mousetrap us. It appears that he has invited the other three to break bread with our President and plans to come to us only after he has their acceptances to present us with a fait accompli which would be difficult to avoid.

Another aspect of this that deserves some thought: the UN official who told us about the dinner characterized it as a dinner for "the four principal Security Council member states". The interesting thing about that formula is not who it includes, but who it includes out. In other words, the UN Secretary General proposes to give a dinner for the "principal Security Council member states", leaving out China which is, of course, the only other permanent member of the Security Council. It looks to me as if U Thant is trying to use us in his continuing efforts to downgrade Taiwan’s UN status.

As I see it, U Thant is being too clever by half. I do not know how you or the President would feel about a big four dinner in New York. However we feel about it, though, I assume we would prefer to make up our own minds rather than being gradually encircled. We can confirm my belief that U Thant is busily spinning a web around us by ascertaining from Heath and Kosygin whether they have in fact been invited to a big four dinner in New York. I believe we should do so forthwith, and if my suspicions are correct, ensure our own freedom of action by persuading Pompidou and Health to "defer acceptance of U Thant’s invitation for the time being".

Hal Sonnenfeldt has seen the memo and has "no objection."/5/

/5/ Wright added this sentence by hand.


That you authorize us to inquire of Heath and Kosygin whether they have, in fact, received and accepted an invitation from U Thant to a big four dinner in New York./6/

/6/ Kissinger initialed the approve option and wrote below it: "Yes, if we can do delicately. But not in way that suggests we are angling for Kosygin visit."

22. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, September 5, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. No classification marking. Sent for action.

Interim Report from Your UN Commission

Your Executive Order required the Commission to present to you prior to September 15 an Interim Report. The Commission will give final approval to the report at a meeting in Washington on the 10th of September. Current indications are that it will be a useful and realistic document which does not attempt to provide answers but indicates the main lines the Commission will pursue looking toward its final report to you next April.

The Chairman of the Commission, Henry Cabot Lodge, would be glad to present the report to you personally if you wish to give the Commission’s work the extra publicity boost that such a meeting would provide. Your meeting with Lodge need be no longer than required to permit the report to change hands and have appropriate press photographic coverage.

While desirable, I don’t believe this is necessary for what will be only an interim report. Furthermore you had indicated you wished publicity for the appointment of five youth members of the Commission, on which Bob Finch and I have sent you a separate memorandum. If you see these young people it should be September 9 or 10, before the meeting of the Commission (and therefore before the interim report is ready, so the two events cannot be combined)./2/ I see no reason for you to take time out twice in a five-day period for the UN Commission.

/2/ President Nixon announced the appointment of an additional five youth members of the Commission on September 10. (Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, September 14, 1970, pp. 1170–1171)

In any event, Lodge hopes that the report can be released by the White House Press Office no later than September 14 to serve as the basis for a number of meetings that the Commission is holding around the country and to permit him to discuss the report in depth at a speech he is scheduled to make to a distinguished UN Commission dinner in New York on the evening of the 14th./3/ I see no problem in releasing the interim report based on the draft we have seen. I would of course check back with you if the final version had any troublesome elements.

/3/ The Commission’s interim report was released September 13. (Ibid., September 21, 1970, p. 1237)


/4/ The President initialed his approval of both recommendations.

1. That I receive the interim report from Cabot Lodge on your behalf on September 12, 13, or 14.

Disapprove, prefer to receive report personally

2. That you authorize the release of the report by the White House Press Office.


23. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, September 25, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 298, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV. Confidential. Sent for action.

Your Participation at the United Nations, and Your Reception of Visiting National Chieftains

In line with your instructions, we recommend the following scenario:

1. We will schedule just enough time in New York to permit you to make a speech to the General Assembly. We will schedule no meetings in New York with any of your opposite numbers.

2. We will invite all Chiefs of State and Heads of Government present in New York to come to Washington for a State Dinner on the evening of Saturday, October 24.

3. We will refer to you for final decision requests for private meetings with you from the more important Chiefs of State and Heads of Government. We will have these meetings in Washington either during the week of the UN ceremonies or in the days immediately thereafter. We will turn down, as gracefully as possible, requests from the lesser of your opposite numbers.

4. On the assumption you will attend the Al Smith dinner,/2/ the morning of the 22nd is the most convenient time for your address to the General Assembly. With your approval of this memorandum, we will instruct Ambassador Yost to have your appearance scheduled for the morning of the 22nd.

/2/ The President wrote "Keep open?" above this sentence.


That you approve these arrangements./3/

/3/ The President checked the approve option and added a handwritten note reading: "But make no commitments re appts–few as poss–no foreign min except Gromyko." Jeanne Davis, Executive Secretary of the National Security Council, sent a memorandum to Department of State Executive Secretary Theodore Eliot, with the text of a telegram to all posts concerning the President’s participation in the UN 25th anniversary delegation. Chiefs of State who would be present in New York were invited to the State dinner, but any other meetings with the President would be kept to the "absolute minimum." (National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IV). The telegram was sent as telegram 162809, October 2. (Ibid.)

24. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, October 5, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. Secret. Sent for information.

Status Report on the Security Problem at the UN

State’s Bill Macomber had a conference last Friday with Mayor Lindsay and most of the commissioners and top police brass of the City of New York. It was a rough meeting, and by no means resolved the problem. Lindsay did, however, say that New York City would meet its obligations to deal with threats which the New York City police evaluated as serious. Lindsay expressed surprise at being told that there was a "crisis of confidence" in the UN about police protection being extended to the threatened missions, and undertook to meet that problem. He was adamant, however, that the Federal Government is not meeting its share of the responsibility, that he will not compromise on "static guard posts", and that the New York City police will, themselves, make the assessment whether the threats are serious and how they should best be met.

As of now, the prospect is that the city will probably do at least somewhat better in meeting the immediate problem of the 13 threatened missions. How much better we will know in a day or so.

On the long range problem, no progress was made at all. John Dean is now at work on a memo to the President setting forth the problem and the options. He will send us a copy which I will send to you forthwith. Dean, like OMB, still feels strongly about the theology of this matter and I am not at all certain that his memo will adequately reflect what I believe to be the ultimate responsibility of the Federal Government for the protection of diplomatic missions at the UN./2/ In other words, I think that you may find it necessary to inject yourself in this matter before it is all over. For the moment, however, the immediate problem seems to have been eased and the wisest course for us now is probably to wait for Dean’s memo before we decide what to do next.

/2/ Kissinger wrote in the margin: "That seems like a lifetime job. What a deadline." "October 12, 1970" is stamped below his note.

25. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, October 9, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. Secret. Sent for information. At the top of the page Kissinger wrote: "Marshall–We must move on this. HK." Below his note is the stamped date "October 12, 1970."

Security Problem at the UN Worsens

Things have started turning bad again with our immediate security problem in New York. On October 6 the Palestine Liberation Office was bombed and a large number of Arab Ambassadors received identical anonymous letters stating that they would be assassinated regardless of USG efforts to protect them.

Like the shepherds in the biblical field, the Arabs are "sore afraid". The Tunisian Ambassador told one of our people that the traditional friendship of Tunisia for the U.S. prevented him from making a formal protest but that he hoped the "U.S. authorities would live up to their responsibilities." He added that he shared the opinion of his Arab colleagues that these incidents were "intolerable".

The Kuwaiti Ambassador (whose mission has already been bombed) has reacted to the death threat emotionally, and warned that the death or injury of any Arab official in New York would create a situation in which "there would be nothing that Arab governments could do to protect Americans in Arab lands."

The Ivory Coast Ambassador (whose mission was bombed on September 27) complained of the "sudden, unannounced and unexplained" removal of police protection from his mission and residence. He was in no wise mollified by our assurances that the police were undoubtedly continuing the investigation and had provided fixed police protection for five days instead of the "normal 24-hour period." The Saudi Arabian Ambassador told us that the U.S. "is in very deep trouble" over the bombings and threats.

Apparently the whole Arab group met on the morning of October 8 and decided to make an official protest to the Secretary General and to the U.S. mission. The protest will concentrate on three points:

1. What, if anything, has been done to apprehend and punish the wrongdoers;

2. What steps are the U.S. Government and New York City going to take henceforth to protect personnel and premises of UN missions; and

3. If the U.S. Government is unable or unwilling to protect the missions, the UN should consider moving its headquarters elsewhere.

I filled John Dean in on all this. He is hard at work on his recommendations to the President and promises to have them on the President’s desk by the time of his Tuesday arrival.

26. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, October 13, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. Confidential. Sent for information.

U.S. Contribution to the ILO Budget

Charles Yost was called in by Secretary General U Thant and General Assembly President Hambro on October 7 to express their deep alarm that the U.S. Congress has cut in half the assessed U.S. contribution to the budget of the International Labor Organization (ILO). They stated that our refusal "on political grounds" to pay our assessed contribution to an international organization puts us in the same position as the Russians and the French. They said that adoption by the U.S. of this position threatened the entire UN financial structure and the viability of the UN itself. They asked Yost to transmit on their behalf to you the strongest possible plea that some means be found as soon as possible for the U.S. to meet its full obligation to the ILO. The full text of the telegram from Yost is at Tab A./2/ The background on this matter is as follows.

/2/ Telegram 2295 from USUN, October 7; attached but not printed. Another copy is ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, LAB 3–3 ILO.

In recent years, George Meany has become increasingly disenchanted with the International Labor Organization. His disenchantment has to do with the compromise of the ILO’s tripartite nature (government–business–labor) in the interest of facilitating Soviet participation. Over the years, these attempts at accommodation have resulted, in fact, in some rather peculiar things. The straw that broke the camel’s back was the publication in the ILO magazine of a blatantly propagandistic piece about Soviet "trade unions", and the appointment of a Russian as an Assistant Director General of the ILO.

His cup running over, Meany had a great deal to say to Congressman Rooney’s Subcommittee at the appropriation hearings for the ILO budget. Rooney fully shares Meany’s distaste, and the result is the Congressional refusal to appropriate the second half of the annual U.S. contribution to the ILO.

We are therefore in the position of refusing to pay one half of our assessed contribution to a UN body.

Our unhappiness with the course of developments in the ILO does not receive much international sympathy. John Rooney’s technique for whipping the ILO back into line is, of course, seen elsewhere as simple blackmail. UN-minded Americans are aghast at what we propose to do. George Meany, however, is quite happy with it, as is the Department of Labor. State is concerned, but not as much as one might expect in the circumstances.

I am convinced that nothing can be done without Meany’s cooperation. I am told by the Department of Labor that Meany wants the bill to pass for its "shock treatment" value on the ILO. At some later time, Meany might be willing to ask his Congressional friends to ease up with a supplemental.

The theoretical possibility exists, of course, that a proper approach from the White House to Meany, promising vigorous action to rectify ILO’s sins, might induce him to ask the Congress to vote the subscription. However, I do not think it will work, at the present time. Moreover, to some extent I think we will benefit from the Congressional action, so long as we appear to be its victims. Finally, I do not think the season is right for stirring up George Meany.

Therefore, in the absence of a strong recommendation from the Secretary of State that the international costs of letting this situation develop are too great to be borne, I do not propose that we take any action. I did, however, think you should know of this situation, which will doubtless get worse before it gets better.

27. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, October 14, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. No classification marking. Sent for information. Kissinger wrote at the top of the page: "Good job, HK."

Security Problem at the UN

Whatever time I can get off from my protocol duties I spend on this problem. John Dean’s memo to the President has still not gone forward. I have just gone over with him his latest draft–and have persuaded him to scrap it in its entirety, as inadequate unto the problem.

John has finally come all the way around and recognizes that now is the time to:

(1) Solve the immediate problem by the assignment to New York of the personnel required to maintain fixed posts at threatened missions, etc.

(2) Recognize that this is a permanent problem and that a permanent federal force capable of handling normal problems, and capable of expansion in abnormal situations, has to be in place in New York.

He has asked me to help him write his memo, which I am doing. He has scheduled a meeting for tomorrow morning with EPS and Secret Service personnel to work out the details.

We will need Justice on this but John, who is now as enthusiastic as he was previously dour, thinks he can deliver them. That will leave OMB still spouting theology to anyone who will listen.

I know you are impatient for action on this and I share your impatience fully. But I think, at last, we are going in the right direction, with all the allies that we need, and at full speed. I hope the bombers will adjust themselves to our pace./2/

/2/ The last sentence was added by hand.

28. Memorandum From Winston Lord of the National Security Council Staff to Marshall Wright, John Holdridge, Helmut Sonnenfeldt, and Richard Kennedy of the National Security Council Staff/1/

Washington, November 10, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. Secret; Eyes Only.

Study of UN Membership Question

Dr. Kissinger wants to launch a review of our policy toward membership in the United Nations. He specifically called for a study on the entire universality question rather than merely the China question.

He would like to launch both an inter-agency effort and an in-house NSC study. On the former he asks that a NSSM be drafted, to be issued after the UN vote, and that this directive be phrased "neutrally." He indicated that this study be assigned to the new China Policy Group (of which Holdridge and Kennedy are aware). However, this would seem to tilt the study toward the China question alone rather than the broader universality focus. Thus I suggest you give him the option of assigning the study to another body which would submit it to the Senior Review Group.

Dr. Kissinger also asked that Wright with Holdridge/Sonnenfeldt undertake a parallel in-house study of the UN membership question to insure a dispassionate look at these issues and to sharpen his own thinking as the bureaucracy study goes forward.

There are related questions which should be folded into the package for HAK such as suggestions on how to handle the public relations aspects of this review, how to deal with the academic community which has been flooding the Government with ideas, etc.

These studies are obviously very sensitive and, for now, should be known only to the addressees of this memorandum.

Please prepare a coordinated package consisting of the following for HAK’s approval:

–A NSSM on the membership question,
–A brief outline of what the NSC in-house study might address,
–Suggestions on how to handle the public relations aspects, dealings with the academic community, etc.

29. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, December 17, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 300, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VI. Confidential. Sent for information.

ILO and UNESCO Studies

I had lunch today with Jay Lovestone and George Hildebrand, who is chairing the ILO study.

Lovestone, for reasons which never became clear despite extensive discussion, made it obvious that he is distressed at the way in which the ILO and UNESCO studies are being conducted. As nearly as I could understand, Lovestone thought that you personally would chair the studies and that the bureaucracy (notably including State Department) would not be given a chance to express its views or water down the studies. I tried, I do not think with success, to explain that the integrity of the studies is enhanced by the participation of all those that have an interest, and that we have no intention of permitting the studies to deteriorate into whitewash.

Both to Hildebrand’s and my great surprise, Jay does not think that the AFL/CIO should express its views regarding the ILO. I am at a loss to explain this, unless he feels that he and Mr. Meany have gotten considerably out in front of what their organization will approve. In that connection, Jay was quite outspoken in expressing the view that the United States should not get out of the ILO, should not refuse to pay its assessment, but should, rather, go ahead and pay the dues but work with greater vigor to serve our own interests within the ILO. That is hardly a revolutionary position, and would not require the kind of thorough-going review which Lovestone stimulated in the first place.

We are of course going ahead with the review in any event and despite the moderate position which Jay is now taking, I have learned enough about the ILO to know that the study is thoroughly needed and long overdue.

Incidentally, the UNESCO study is now moving along nicely. Retired Ambassador Bob Woodward has been hired by State to honshu the whole operation and this should insure that it has the kind of consistent and authoritative leadership required.

30. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rogers to President Nixon/1/

Washington, December 21, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 300, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VI. Limited Official Use. Attached memoranda indicate that this memorandum was sent under cover of a memorandum from Melvin Levine to Kissinger on December 29, and from Kissinger to the President on January 4, 1971.

Priority Objectives at the UN: A Status Report

In your October 23 speech to the UN General Assembly, you singled out eight problem areas in which "it is in the world interest" for the UN to make substantial progress./2/ The General Assembly wound up its work December 17. I thought you would be interested to know to what extent progress was actually made there in the areas that you marked for special emphasis.

/2/ President Nixon’s address to the UN General Assembly is printed in Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Richard Nixon, 1970, pp. 926–932.

1. ". . . to avoid drifting into a widening division between have and have-not nations." Your pledge that we would do our full and fair share in the matter of aid "in the spirit of the UN’s Second Development Decade" was a major boost to multilateralism. It helped to set the stage for adoption on the next day, by acclamation, of the Second Development Decade Strategy document. Our willingness to join in international reaffirmation of an aid "target" of 1% of GNP, although we avoided any commitment as to our own assistance, contributed significantly to the success of this effort in world-wide economic development cooperation.

2. "It is in the world interest for the United Nations not to be paralyzed in its most important function, that of keeping the peace."Although we pressed hard for at least limited steps to improve peacekeeping machinery, the Assembly again failed to move forward and simply remanded the issue to its peacekeeping committee, which has made little headway in five years of effort. However, the fact that you marked peacekeeping as a US priority objective at the UN will strengthen the hand of our negotiators as we try during the coming year for an agreement, initially with the Soviets, on mutually acceptable peacekeeping ground rules.

3. ". . . that we cooperate in preserving and restoring our natural environment." Further progress was made toward defining the goals of the 1972 UN Conference on the Human Environment which is scheduled to take place in Stockholm. One difficulty has been the suspicion of less developed countries that concern over the environment will inhibit their economic development. To help overcome this, the resolution passed by the General Assembly asked the Preparatory Committee of the Stockholm Conference to give special consideration to the economic development aspects of preserving and restoring the environment.

4. ". . . for resources of the sea to be used for the benefit of all–and not to become a source of international conflict, pollution, and unbridled commercial rivalry." We formally proposed early convocation of a law-of-the-sea conference. This encountered opposition from countries that favor wide territorial seas (principally the Latin Americans) and those developing countries that fear they will not be prepared at an early date, but in the end the Assembly agreed to convene the conference in 1973. Much arduous work lies ahead in preparing for agreements at this conference, but a part of the groundwork was laid when the Assembly adopted a declaration of "principles" governing the seabed beyond the limits of national jurisdiction. Those principles are consistent with those that you enunciated in your seabeds proposal last May.

5. ". . . to ensure that the quantity of life does not impair the quality of life." Although the UN population program is now established and growing, some suspicions among less-developed countries were still evident in the fairly large number of abstentions on our proposal to designate 1974 as a World Population Year. The vote was 70–8–31. Among major LDC’s, India, Indonesia and Egypt spoke in favor of population control, and Brazil against. Population policy was also made an integral part of the Second Development Strategy document.

6. ". . . that the narcotics traffic be curbed." In line with your statement, the Economic and Social Council, acting under the authority of the General Assembly, approved an enlarged program of action, for immediate implementation, to deal with drug abuse and the illicit traffic; the establishment of a UN Fund for Drug Abuse Control; and the elaboration by the Secretary General of a plan for long-term action to fight drug addiction.

7. ". . . to put a decisive end to sky piracy and the kidnapping and murder of diplomats." On November 25 the Assembly passed without opposition a strong anti-hijacking resolution on which we had worked closely with the principal co-sponsors. The resolution put further impetus behind the drafting of the hijacking convention which has just been completed at The Hague. Conventions on sabotage and sanctions are less far along. The General Assembly did not consider an item on kidnapping or terrorism against diplomats this year.

8. ". . . to ensure that the human rights of Prisoners-of-War are not violated." The resolution which we sponsored, calling for compliance with the Geneva Convention and spelling out what needs to be done, obtained 67 votes (including India and a fairly large number of Africans), with 30 voting against. The Communists made strenuous efforts to politicize the debate on this humanitarian issue but were placed on the defensive. As Ambassador Yost put it, the vote showed "that this treatment of prisoners weighs on the conscience of the world."

William P. Rogers

31. Memorandum From Herbert Levin of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, December 22, 1970.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 299, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. V. Confidential. Sent for information.

"Universality" of Membership in the U.N.

You asked for my views on this subject. These appear below. Universality of U.N. membership is also being dealt with in an internal NSC staff study/2/ and NSSM 107./3/

/2/ Not further identified.

/3/ Document 312.

Universality has a lot of superficial appeal; it appears to be a common-sense answer to our Chirep difficulty. Further examination, however, suggests this is not necessarily the case.

The quickest way to spotlight the difficulties is by examining the fact that "universality" of U.N. membership is undefined and probably undefinable. If we favored such a broad policy, and it was accepted by the U.N., we would find ourselves contending with the entry into the U.N. of Sihanouk, the South Moluccas, the PRC, Rhodesia, etc., to say nothing of the difficulties which would arise in our relations with the Micro-states.

If we try to get agreement on "universality" as meaning just the divided states, we might end up with it applying only, for example, to Korea. This could happen if the Germans are not ready to move or if the Soviets use the veto against South Vietnam.

China is a representation question; the divided states are membership problems. Thus, while these questions are inter-related in many ways, in actual handling they become quite different. The main point of difference is that whereas the divided states are agreed that they are divided, and might cautiously agree that someday they should be reunited, the two Chinese governments agree that China is not divided, and that the only question is to choose which is the "sole legitimate government of all China."

This leaves us with only three likely options on Chirep:

–To maintain something like our past position in foreknowledge of the likelihood of early defeat, or

–to move to some sort of dual representation for "one China," without linking to other states membership problems. There are also dangers for defeat for this position, though it holds out some possibility of preserving a U.N. position for the GRC while establishing U.S. policy in a more defensible and common-sense mold, or

–to define universality to meet our needs. This would bar expulsion of the GRC, not compel us to vote against Peking’s participation and not get us involved in anything which would appear to be a "Two Chinas" maneuver. This would be most complex tactically since it would encompass a number of questions along with dual representation for China, but might have some appeal at the U.N./4/

/4/ Kissinger highlighted this paragraph and wrote below it: "How do we do that? Please explain."

32. Memorandum From Marshall Wright of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, January 26, 1971.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 300, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VI. Confidential. Sent for information.

Discontent of UN Members with Security in New York

As you know, we have had a new rash of security incidents at the UN. The Jewish Defense League program of harassing the Soviets was the most dramatic, but there have been others, such as a bomb planted in the UAR Mission and the telephone threat to the Hungarians.

Added to these have been some relatively minor incidents. The Spanish Permanent Representative got a probably well-deserved punch in the nose from a garbage collector, and the Lithuanians demonstrated peacefully against the Soviet Mission.

These actions have brought to a sharp focus the unhappiness among UN diplomats in New York. (The crime rate has been increasing, housing has become increasingly expensive and hard to get, services have been deteriorating, etc.)

On January 19, at the UN Committee on Host Country Relations, USUN reported a "bitter denunciation of the US and New York as host city which was very strong even for this hostile forum." Many of the speakers alluded to the possibility of moving the UN from New York, and the Mission comments that, "Although much of the invective at this meeting was obviously political, we must face the fact that concern over the security situation is widespread and legitimate, and that even the closest friends of the US Government do not believe enough is being done. We urge that a search be made for long-term remedies through new federal legislation, legal steps against militant groups, and any other administrative steps."

The full USUN report is attached at Tab A./2/

/2/ Telegram 174 from USUN, January 20; attached but not printed.

In fact, additional federal legislation is already being considered at State and Justice.

You will recall that last fall we faced an upsurge of discontent with security in New York. After much thrashing around, we handled that problem with the temporary assignment to New York of elements of the Executive Protective Services (all of which have since been withdrawn). We also agreed to support legislation authorizing an ex gratia payment to New York and are still negotiating with City officials over the amount.

There is always the danger that sooner or later a dramatic incident will occur, perhaps involving the loss of human life. This would exacerbate the existing sentiment to move the UN from New York.

While a wholesale migration of the UN does not seem to me to be an imminent danger, there is certainly a possibility that some elements of the UN might relocate elsewhere, as the UN Industrial Development Organization, and the UN Conference on Trade and Development have already done.

I have asked Mel Levine to stay current with the problem and with discussions within the bureaucracy to ameliorate it. Given the nature of Fun City, I think we can count on this problem getting worse before it gets better–and I think there would be much logical merit in biting this bullet before it gets enough momentum to knock our teeth out. I doubt, however, that we will do so.

33. Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State/1/

New York, February 3, 1971, 0106Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 300, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VI. Secret; Priority; Exdis.

331. For the Under Secretary from Yost and Phillips.

Subj: Future Political Status of Micronesia.

1. We recognize that it is basic US policy objective to seek extension US sovereignty over Micronesia. We believe manner in which we seek achieve this objective will have crucial impact on our ability secure UN approval for termination of trust agreement, or acquiescence to any US-Micronesian agreement. We are consequently disturbed by some of options set forth in TTPI options paper./2/ Some of them would violate the letter and spirit of our obligations under the trust agreement and Article 76(b) of UN Charter itself./3/ Other options may conform to a possible reading of these obligations but will be in conflict with way overwhelming majority of UN, including many Western states, interpret Charter. In short, self-determination to be saleable in UN must involve at least semblance of free choice. Whichever option we decide pursue, we believe it should envisage earliest possible termination of trust agreement (as recommended by Trusteeship Council last year). The present composition of T.C. is favorable to us. This situation can only change for worse if: 1) TTPI remains only reason for its continued existence after Australian trust over New Guinea is terminated; 2) Australia then ceases be member, and GRC is replaced by PRC.

/2/ Not further identified.

/3/ Article 76(b) of the UN Charter required countries administering Trust Territories "to promote the political, economic, social, and educational advancement of the inhabitants of the trust territories, and their progressive development towards self-government or independence as may be appropriate to the particular circumstances of each territory and its peoples and the freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned, and as may be provided by the terms of each trusteeship agreement."

2. Specifically options 1, 2 and 4 raise very serious difficulties.

Option 1, if it amounted to a recognition that we must in any event improve our administration of territory would be acceptable as far as that goes, but can not be regarded as a long-term solution. It is not consistent with Charter, much less UNGA Res 1541 (XVII)/4/ or with friendly relations declaration which is properly regarded by virtually entire membership of UN as an authoritative interpretation of the right of all peoples to self determination.

/4/ Resolution 1541 (XVII) stated that member states were obligated under Article 73(e) of the UN Charter to transmit information about non-self-governing territories that they administered until these territories achieved self-government either by independence, free association with an independent state, or by integration with an independent state.

3. Option 2 in addition to the defect of option 1 has two further defects of (a) having already been rejected; (b) purporting to be a final solution. We can confidently predict that if we try to palm anything like this off on the Security Council or even the TC we will face a political storm with wide-ranging and long lasting repercussions well beyond confines of UN. We would find few if any allies to support such actions even among Western countries.

4. Option 3 if accomplished via a UN supervised election or plebiscite which is accepted by the overwhelming majority of the inhabitants would be acceptable.

5. Option 4 is bound to be regarded as an attempt on our part to divide and conquer. We would be hard put to make a case that the division of British Cameroons at time of self-determination constituted a precedent. We would certainly be accused of deliberately seeking to create non self-sustaining entities in order to force them into a status of continued dependency.

6. Option 5, unless providing semblance of free choice, would not comport with the views of the overwhelming majority of us [UN?] as it will inevitably be reflected in SC. A future option for independence or for some sort of statehood would help make this option consistent with our obligations, and hence saleable.

7. Option 6 of course creates no difficulties from UN point of view. From foregoing it will be clear that options 6, 5 (if modified as suggested) and 3 would be most acceptable in UN, in that order. The other three options can only cause serious problems for us sooner or later.


34. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Australia/1/

Washington, May 13, 1971, 0139Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, UN 3. Limited Official Use. Drafted by Nathan A. Pelcovits, cleared by Armitage and Martin, and approved by Pelcovits. Repeated to USUN.

83983. Subject: Lodge Commission on UN.

1. Australian Emboff (Williams) asked Dept views on Lodge Commission Report on UN,/2/ what official standing it had and what follow-up we planned.

/2/ The Report of the President’s Commission for the Observance of the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations was released on April 26, 1971. (Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, May 3, 1971, pp. 708–709)

2. Deptoff (IO–Pelcovits) explained that President’s Commission was part of national effort at reappraisal of UN during 25th anniversary. It constituted useful fresh look at issues by prestigious group but represented views of private citizens with no official standing.

3. We have taken no official position on recommendations but will review them carefully, and expect to draw on them as source of ideas and proposals as we formulate policy. Many of Commission’s recommendations are consonant with our policies and efforts on key issues, providing welcome public support in such areas as peacekeeping, ICJ reform, fiscal solvency, improved organizational procedures and need for improved international action on issues like narcotics abuse and preservation of environment. Others we will want to assess in terms of soundness, overall priorities, and capacity of international institutions to carry them out.

4. We agree with report that as more and more issues are handled through multilateral diplomacy stress should be put on improved organization and performance in UN system.

5. Williams said at this stage did not want single out specifics but believed Australia would support action for improved UN organization and performance, and raising quality of secretariat. He thought Canberra would also look favorably on recommendations for associate status to incoming microstates and for better screening of regional candidates for SC seats. Expressed interest in being apprised either in Washington or New York if we intended implement specific recommendations.


35. Memorandum From Melvin Levine and Richard Smyser of the National Security Council Staff to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, May 18, 1971.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 301, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VII. Secret; Nodis. Sent for urgent information.

U Thant Proposal to Convoke Leaders of US, Mainland China, USSR, UK and France

The attached cable (Tab A) reports U Thant’s proposal to Secretary Rogers that Thant invite leaders of the US, PRC, USSR, France, and the UK to be present in Geneva during the week of September 6./2/

/2/ Telegram 1291 from USUN, May 17; attached but not printed.

If the President were willing to come, Thant would approach Chou-En-lai and then the others. If the President were unable to attend, Thant suggests a meeting at the Foreign Minister’s level.

Secretary Rogers said he would check this out (presumably with the President) and notify Thant.

While we have not yet thought through the full implications of this proposal, some of the considerations it entails include the following: (1) What would be the effect on our UN Chirep position? (2) What would be the effect on our relations with Taipei? (3) With Peking? (4) Do we wish to see the UN–and U Thant–this deeply involved in this level of our diplomacy? (5) Would such a meeting provide an opportunity for useful discussions on Vietnam? (6) Should the President himself be involved in such a meeting?

We are not coming forward with recommendations in this memo. Since the State Department will presumably be raising the issue with us, we will be able to staff the question out more methodically. But since it is possible that Secretary Rogers may be raising the issue with you very shortly, we thought you should be aware that the problem exists.

Bill Hyland concurs.

36. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, undated.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 301, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VII. No classification marking. Sent for action. A covering memorandum from Marshall Wright to Kissinger, dated July 22, bears Kissinger’s handwritten note: "No memo to Pres. necessary. He will not speak at General Assembly (has said so to me). As for heads of state, you can make individual recommendations."

Your Participation in This Fall’s UN General Assembly

The 1971 General Assembly session will be upon us in another month and a half, and it is time to consider the nature of your participation therein.

My instinct is that you should not plan on making a speech to the General Assembly this fall.

In the first place, you have spoken to each General Assembly session since your inauguration, and I think we should avoid cheapening the coin of your appearances by giving them the routine and ritual character of a yearly obligation.

Secondly, Chinese representation will be the dominant issue at this fall’s session. Should you appear before the General Assembly and not make a forceful argument for retaining Taipei’s seat, it would be interpreted as a sell-out of an old ally. On the other hand, a ringing and effective defense of Taipei’s seat by you personally will hardly be helpful to our dialogue with Peking, whatever priority they actually attach to UN membership.

Finally, I would like to save your next appearance before the General Assembly until after your trip to Peking. There will, at that point, be tremendous interest in the international community, and the circumstances should be ideal for a General Assembly speech setting forth the kind of world you are working toward. Such a speech would not only have considerable potential impact on the international community, but should also have a great domestic impact in underlining your world leadership role and in wringing additional benefit from the Chinese initiative.

If you agree with this reasoning, I will convey to Secretary Rogers and George Bush your intention not to appear before the General Assembly this fall. We can, of course, arrange such an appearance on short notice if circumstances should change.

On a related matter, there will be a number of Chiefs of State/ Heads of Government coming to the UN this fall, though nothing like the large group that came for last year’s anniversary session. A number of them will undoubtedly want to see you, particularly in view of your Peking initiative. We will be making individual recommendations to you, but I think it would be a good idea, in the current atmosphere, for you to see as many as your schedule will allow. We would limit these calls to relatively brief office meetings and space them well apart.


That you authorize me to inform those concerned that you do not intend to speak to the General Assembly this fall./2/

/2/ Neither the approve or disapprove option is checked.

37. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger) to President Nixon/1/

Washington, undated.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 301, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VII. Secret. Sent for action. A handwritten note reads: "Urgent return to Jeanne Davis. Action by telephone 8/30/71." A covering memorandum from Davis, NSC Staff Secretary, to Executive Secretary Eliot is dated August 31.

Appointments with you for Foreign Chiefs of State coming to the 26th UN General Assembly

As of now, we have received seven specific requests to call upon you from foreign Chiefs of State/Heads of Government who are coming to the United States this fall in connection with the General Assembly. The Department of State and my staff have reviewed these requests. State recommends your seeing six; I believe that only four (including one you have already accepted) are justified in terms of the demands on your schedule.

In one case, where the visitor’s schedule is already precise, we are asking for a specific time. For any of the others we now need only an agreement in principle so that we can reply to the requests. We will work out specific times later, and it should be possible to spread these appointments out over several months.

1. President Ould Daddah–Mauritania. Ould Daddah is this year’s Chairman of the Organization of African Unity. As such, he has been instructed to explain African views on South Africa to the UN and to various Chiefs of State, including you. In view of the misunderstanding over the visit of last year’s OAU Chairman, President Kaunda of Zambia, a failure to see Ould Daddah would almost certainly be interpreted as a deliberate slight to the OAU. Ould Daddah has asked for an appointment between September 28 and October 3./2/ I strongly recommend a 30-minute appointment./3/

/2/ "October 3" was crossed out, and "September 30" added by hand.

/3/ All of the approve options are checked below.


2. Prime Minister Bandaranaike–Ceylon. Whether Prime Minister Bandaranaike comes to the General Assembly will depend on whether she can see you. Ambassador Strausz-Hupe, who recommended against such an appointment last year, is encouraging a meeting this year. She is trying to establish a relationship with the US as an anchor at a time of instability in South Asia. While she has succumbed on a number of occasions to the temptation to take positions not in our interest, she has been rethinking her policy since our rapid response during her insurgency last spring. She has also asked the Soviet technicians who came then to leave. Ambassador Strausz-Hupe, conceding all her shortcomings, points out that he does not see a better leader on the horizon. As a secondary matter, he points out that she knows the leadership in Peking better than most Asian leaders. If she comes, it will be sometime in October. I strongly recommend a 30-minute


3. Prime Minister Souvanna Phouma–Laos. In view of the situation in Laos and Souvanna Phouma’s yearly visit to the General Assembly, this call has taken place almost every year. In view of the Indochina situation, I recommend a 30-minute meeting.


4. President Maga–Dahomey. Dahomey is a small but generally very helpful country both in her position on African issues and at the UN. Dahomey joined with us as a co-sponsor of the very helpful Prisoner of War Resolution passed by the General Assembly last fall. State believes this would be a good opportunity to acknowledge this kind of support. Maga is coming to the US on a private visit, primarily to encourage American private investment. His schedule is flexible and the meeting could be any time this fall. While seeing him would be a nice gesture, I do not believe the reasons are strong enough to justify putting him on your schedule. Thus I recommend against an appointment.

Approve (not seeing him)
No, will see him for 20 minutes

5. President Tombalbaye–Chad. Our relations with Chad are good and State recommends a brief courtesy call. I do not believe you need see him and recommend against an appointment.

Approve (not seeing him)
No, will see him for 20 minutes

6. President Amin–Uganda. Neither State nor I recommend this appointment. Amin took power in a military coup several months ago and so far, at least, has stirred up a great deal of difficulty with his neighbors. He is also certain to make a strong pitch for a great deal of military assistance which we are not interested in providing for a number of reasons including his open desire to use arms against his neighbors. Finally, two American citizens apparently were recently killed by Amin’s undisciplined troops and it is inappropriate for you to agree to receive him while that matter is still in flux. I recommend that we inform Ugandan authorities that your schedule will not permit a meeting this fall.

Approve (not seeing him)
No, will see him for 20 minutes

7. Prime Minister Razak–Malaysia. You have already agreed to this meeting./4/

/4/ "Oct 4 or 5" has been added by hand.

As of now we anticipate that only four other General Assembly visitors are likely to ask for meetings with you. They are New Zealand Prime Minister Holyoake, Tunisian Prime Minister Nouira, Foreign Minister Chou Shu-kai of the Republic of China and Philippine Foreign Minister Romulo. We will not make specific recommendations on these appointments until such time as firm requests have been received.

38. Memorandum From Secretary of State Rogers to President Nixon/1/

Washington, December 7, 1971.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. IX. Confidential.

Progress Report Concerning United States Government Participation in UNESCO

In my memorandum to you of March 30, 1971 on "Assessment of and Department Policy Toward United States Government Participation in UNESCO"/2/ I stated that I would submit to you, by December 1, 1971, a progress report.

/2/ Not printed. (Ibid., Box 301, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. VII) A May 3 memorandum from Kissinger to Nixon summarized the Department’s conclusions as follows: "We should stay in UNESCO. We should take steps to improve the quality of our participation in the organization. We should maintain our current financial contributions to UNESCO, but vigorously resist budgetary increases." The second page bears Nixon’s handwritten response: "This sounds much too ‘go along with things as they are but have a 7-point program to appear otherwise.’ I want a deliberate policy of cutting up UNESCO at every opportunity when we can get away with it–foreign policy wise. Prepare new program to achieve this goal. The difference I have with whoever prepared this paper is that they believe in UNESCO. I do not."

Attached is that report./3/

/3/ Attached but not printed.

In preparing this report the Department has indicated the progress made in achieving the strategy objectives outlined in the March 30, 1971 memorandum, i.e.:

1) increase the number of Americans holding professional positions in UNESCO;
2) exercise greater influence in UNESCO policies and programs;
3) improve the quality of our delegations to conferences and meetings;
4) clearly establish United States policy and program positions for UNESCO;
5) utilize UNESCO more effectively to demonstrate American achievements;
6) advance the United States as an example of an open and free society and so counter Communist distortions;
7) strengthen the United States National Commission for UNESCO in order to capitalize on its potential for support of UNESCO programs.

Progress in keeping with the strategy objectives has occurred in the following areas:

1) all UNESCO-oriented offices in the Department have been consolidated in the Bureau of International Organization Affairs to provide more effective and coordinated utilization of human and material resources;

2) under the leadership of the United States, the major Western contributors to UNESCO (the so-called Geneva Group) agreed on setting a ceiling for UNESCO’s 1973–1974 budget beyond which they were not prepared to support the Director-General’s budgetary request;

3) planning for closer harmonization of activities between the United States National Commission for UNESCO and the operational office in the Department is well under way, and will result in giving the Commission a more constructive role in furthering our interests in UNESCO;

4) frank and useful discussions were held with UNESCO’s Deputy Director-General, an American citizen. He was put on notice that the United States would be seeking a reduction of its share of the assessed budget (currently 29.80%) and alerted to the programs of prime interest to the United States;

5) a series of fact-finding trips were taken to various countries in Asia, Africa and South America. 98 UNESCO projects were inspected and a critical evaluation of their worth and contribution to UNESCO’s aims is being made;

6) American positions in UNESCO’s Headquarters Staff increased from 84 on January 1, 1971, (12.5% of all professional posts) to 96 (13.8%) on November 15, 1971. During the same period, Americans in posts in field projects increased from 41 (4.7%) to 55 (5.3%);

7) the Department submitted a major paper to UNESCO as a part of the continuing effort to influence the Organization’s future course. The paper stressed the need for examination and review of the value of UNESCO programs, the elimination of peripheral projects, the diversion of funds to areas of prime interest to this nation, and need for sound evaluation procedures. These points were stressed orally during the October 1971 meeting of UNESCO’s Executive Board;

8) UNESCO convened and successfully concluded three major scientific conferences during the past eight months. Each was of significance to the United States scientific community and to the United States Government;

9) the United States Delegation to the recently-concluded Executive Board meeting of UNESCO, supported by eight co-sponsors, submitted a resolution calling attention to Soviet manipulation of texts of the Russian language edition of the UNESCO Courier, UNESCO’s official monthly publication. Although action on the item was postponed until the Executive Board’s meeting in the Spring of 1972, the view was clearly expressed and the item will be vigorously pursued;

10) major newspaper and magazine editorials and news articles on UNESCO’s 25th Anniversary Commemorative Ceremonies held in Paris on November 4–5 were highly favorable and reflected the reservoir of good will that exists around this country for UNESCO;

11) during the short period under review not all objectives were subject to progress due to certain uncontrollable external factors. Such an item is number three concerning delegations, inasmuch as there was no UNESCO General Conference during the review period.

I am convinced we are making progress in reaching our goals in UNESCO. Given additional time and steadfastness in our determination I know further advances will be achieved.

U Alexis Johnson/4/

/4/ Johnson signed for Rogers above Rogers’ typed signature.

39. Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State/1/

New York, January 4, 1972, 0005Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. Secret; Exdis.

7. Subj: Bush–Waldheim Conversation Jan 3.

1. Summary. Bush held wide-ranging one-hour conversation with SYG Waldheim Jan 3. Waldheim indicated his strong interest in early meeting with President, Secretary and Congressional leaders; his determination to be an active SYG and to tackle vigorously fiscal and administrative problems of UN; his willingness to have an American fill Bunche position; his interest in US role in ongoing UN humanitarian effort in East Bengal. End Summary.

2. Bush (accompanied by Bennett and Newlin) paid courtesy call on SYG Waldheim afternoon Jan 3 which developed, at SYG’s initiative, into wide-ranging substantive discussion which threw considerable light on how Waldheim sees his new job.

3. Bush began by reiterating US congratulations on Waldheim’s appointment. Visit was essentially courtesy call but he did want SYG to know that US was willing to discuss UN financial problem whenever Waldheim wished. US was ready to participate in multilateral effort to solve problem but Soviets and others also had to do their share.

4. On another subject, Bush said he believed SYG had already indicated publicly that he expected US to nominate an American to replace Bunche and he could confirm that this was the US position.

5. Waldheim noted that many articles had appeared in press to effect that he would not be an active SYG. He assured Bush this would not be the case and pointed to his reputation as DirGen of Political Affairs and as FonMin. He was aware that prestige of UN was at low ebb, particularly in US, and that remedial steps must be taken. Bush said USG view of new SYG was as stated by him in GA and to press and that no high ranking US official had taken any other line. Waldheim said he aware of this and was grateful. (It obvious SYG deeply stung over press stories.)

6. SYG said unfortunate impression had been created that he had been the Soviet candidate and that US was cool toward him. In order to counter this impression he thought it very important to meet with the President, the Secretary and with Congressional leaders ASAP. He was willing to run risk of being criticized for calling on US officials first and he would take the line that it was only natural to call on host country leaders at earliest opportunity. Speaking personally, Bush said that he thought this suggestion made good sense and he would see what could be arranged.

7. On successor to Bunche, SYG said he had been somewhat surprised when U Thant informed him of impression US willing relinquish Bunche position in favor of Mathews’ slot. He now aware that US interested in filling Bunche post. Guyer had just observed that had he been aware Rolz-Bennett’s job consisted in left overs from the Bunche operation he would not have taken it. Had the US been interested in a switch then Urquhart could have been promoted to Guyer’s deputy. Guyer also questioned whether one of superpowers should ideally have Bunche job.

8. Bush said that we thought highly of both Guyer and Urquhart but that we also believed an American should occupy the Bunche position. We would want to talk to SYG about how he envisages the job and would want to be sure that the person we nominate is not only qualified but an individual with whom SYG can work closely. In response to SYG’s question, Bush said this was an official US position.

9. Waldheim said he would go along since it was accepted practice that this was an American position. He expressed warm appreciation for Bush’s willingness to discuss qualifications and to be certain that individual eventually nominated would be acceptable personally to SYG.

10. On financial crisis, Waldheim said he had already broached matter with Malik and had stressed Sovs would have to help solve problem. Practical solution would have to be found which got around Sov views on legal issues involved. When Malik in a position to talk, he envisaged series of bilateral discussions between himself, Sovs, US and others in first instance to see if elements of solution could be found. He also planned to talk to Chinese about finances as well as personnel in the near future.

11. On the administrative side, Waldheim said he well aware that there was much duplication and that not all Secretariat personnel were fully employed. A UN inspector Bernard (French) had made a comprehensive survey and Waldheim said he would study it carefully. He said he would also welcome any US suggestions and would give them every consideration.

12. Waldheim confirmed that he would be reviewing UN humanitarian effort in East Bengal with Guyer, Henry and others Jan 6. He had impression US prepared assist through the UN but said that Sovs wished to contribute directly to Bangladesh. Bush took line para 6 State 232870./2/ US willing to share in international effort but UN should not assume we would play leading role or assume preponderant share of the costs. Bush said he would be discussing US views in greater detail with Guyer and Urquhart Jan 4.

/2/ Not printed. (Ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, SOC 10 BANGLADESH)


40. Memorandum for the President’s File/1/

Washington, January 24, 1972.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Special Files, President’s Office Files, Box 87, Memoranda for the President, December 12, 1971–February 20, 1972. Secret. Drafted by Kissinger.

Your Meeting with Secretary General Kurt Waldheim of the United Nations on Monday, January 24, 1972, at 11:04–11:22 a.m.

The President
Secretary General Waldheim of the United Nations
Secretary of State William Rogers
Dr. Henry A. Kissinger
George Bush, U. S. Ambassador to the United Nations

[After some talk about Hungarian refugees in Austria, the conversation turned to the challenge facing the new Secretary General at the UN.]/2/

/2/ Brackets in the source text.

President: We have the same problems in the United States about support for the United Nations. It is part of the general problem we have now about American attitudes towards international affairs. My policy, as you know, is to maintain a constructive American role in the world.

Waldheim: I have always tackled jobs with energy. We must restore confidence in the UN. The recent events on the subcontinent show the need for this. Even your overture to China affects the UN. But there is no alternative to the United Nations. If the US interest in the UN flags, then China and the USSR will simply take over. American policy is helpful even on the Subcontinent. After all, your position was supported by 103 other countries.

With respect to the UN’s own problems, we have now marked out a solution of the short-term problems. Countries should pay their contribution in January rather than in July as is now the case. If that is impossible, then can you pay in one lump sum.

41. Letter From the Representative to the United Nations (Bush) to President Nixon/1/

New York, June 27, 1972.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. Confidential. A copy was sent to Secretary Rogers. An attached memorandum to Kissinger, also dated June 27, indicated that a copy was also sent to H. R. Haldeman.

Dear Mr. President:

An Evaluation–The Nixon Administration and the United Nations

If most of the foreign ambassadors accredited to the UN and the UN Secretariat were polled, a UN critique of our work would go something like this:


1. President has great grasp of world affairs.

2. President, through peace offer plus withdrawals, has clearly demonstrated he wants peace. This has turned sentiment around at the UN on the Vietnam question to some degree.

3. President has high marks for new China policy, Peking trip, Moscow summit.

4. President generally gets credit for trying to use UN on India-Pakistan war and for massive support in response to Secretary-General’s plea on Bangladesh relief.


1. General feeling that U.S. Government is becoming less supportive of UN.

2. 25 percent ceiling very unpopular.

3. Breaking of chrome sanctions on Rhodesia unpopular. Observers don’t separate out congressional action from administrative action.

4. Middle East-Arab discontent with U.S. Government’s inability to "deliver Israel"; an unhappy view of "Nothing can happen until after the election."

5. Standard complaints about lack of support on African issues etc.

Assessment by Ambassador Bush

The White House should be prepared to take the offense on the charge that we don’t support the UN.

A. We have tried to use the UN on many political issues.

1. India–Pakistan–frustrated by Soviet veto

2. Vietnam–many initiatives in past–frustrated by Russian and now Chinese all-out opposition

B. We have shown major support for the UN in the area of refugees ($119 million to date through the UN).

C. We recognize that things won’t happen at the UN if the big powers don’t agree, therefore let’s not wring our hands about what it can’t do. Let’s support what it can do. The U.S. is doing this in the economic and social end.

D. With regard to finances, the fact that we want our contribution to be ceilinged at 25 percent is not a downgrading of the UN. We will continue to support old UN activities as they do the job and new ones that have promise such as the Environmental Fund. We feel we are right in supporting Waldheim in his plea for streamlining and efficiency. We know, and all others at the UN know too, that there are some programs that simply don’t work. They must be improved or eliminated. The UN will not survive unless its supporters are constructively critical.

E. We should refer critics to Moscow communiqué language on support for the UN plus several helpful presidential foreign policy statements.

Action Recommendation–Presidential Action

Given the growing sentiment of "The U.S. is not willing to fully support the UN", I think one or a combination of the following ideas make sense.

A. Personal letter to Secretary General Waldheim (suggested in Bush letter to President dated June 19, 1972)./2/

/2/ In Bush’s letter to the President, he appraised Waldheim as being "basically pro-West, and basically inclined towards friendship with the United States of America." The draft letter read: "Dear Mr. Secretary General: Things have quieted down a bit since my Moscow trip and I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for your helpful comments issued at the conclusion of my visit there. I hope you share my views that the trip might make our common goal of world peace more attainable. Ambassador Bush has kept me informed of the consultations he has had with you on Vietnam as well as on other matters. I note that you, too, have been travelling extensively around the world to further the goals of the United Nations. We are most appreciative for all of this." (Ibid.) There is no record that such a letter was sent.

B. Presidential call on Secretary General when in New York plus visit to U.S. Mission across the street.

C. Possible presidential appearance at some UN Day function in October.

D. Invitation to Secretary General and UN permanent representatives to White House reception. President Johnson sent plane to New York and brought the Secretary-General and permanent representatives to the White House for such an affair. The best time would be just before the General Assembly in September.

E. Invitation to Secretary General, key Secretariat personnel, and members of the Security Council (15 nations) for visit with President on Sequoia.

F. Personal swearing-in of General Assembly delegation by President.

G. Presidential address to the 27th General Assembly in October stressing:

1. Summit meetings help reduce tensions which facilitates work at UN.

2. Summit meetings not at expense of our concern for developing countries–none care more about "third world" than the U.S.

3. Reference to Moscow communiqué–"strengthen the UN".

I would be pleased to discuss this evaluation with any member of your staff./3/

/3/ On August 30 Kissinger replied to Bush: "You can be sure that we will give careful attention to your recommendations although I am not optimistic that we will be able to fit UN appearances into the President’s busy fall schedule. On the more positive side, however, we will look for a suitable occasion to send a friendly Presidential letter to Secretary General Waldheim." Kissinger added a handwritten note reading: "I usually answer letters faster than that. HK." (Ibid.)

George Bush

42. Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State/1/

New York, July 26, 1972, 1810Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. Secret; Exdis. Repeated to Moscow.

2624. Subj: Waldheim Visit to Moscow and Plans re China.

July 25. The Secretary General reviewed with me his Moscow trip saying that he was courteously received and that he had the distinct impression that the Russian leaders wanted to avoid confrontation with the United States at all cost. It is his judgment that the Middle East situation and Vietnam were second in importance to good relations with the United States Government. He got this distinct feeling from the high level leaders he met and lower echelon people as well.

He reviewed the UN financial situation with Moscow. He proposed an arrangement under which the Soviet Union would pay $15 million towards the deficit and that the US Government would pay $15 million towards the deficit. He now estimates the deficit that needs to be paid off at $65 million. He figures that the balance ($35 million) would come from other industrialized countries.

He discussed his forthcoming trip to China. He indicated that the Chinese wanted the trip to be sooner rather than later. He is now thinking of going in mid-August and said that the Chinese came over specifically to see him so that he would go early, well before the General Assembly session. He indicated that the Chinese wanted him to come via Thailand rather than on the route that would take him through Moscow. It is now his intention to go in mid-August, return to Austria, and then come back to the United Nations.


43. Memorandum From the Acting Executive Secretary of the Department of State (Miller) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)/1/

Washington, August 12, 1972.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. No classification marking.

Report on Implementation of Lodge Commission Recommendations on the United Nations/2/

/2/ The report, dated August 15, is attached but not printed.

The President’s Commission for the Observance of the 25th Anniversary of the United Nations, chaired by Ambassador Lodge, last year made over ninety recommendations for improving the performance of the United Nations and the effectiveness of U.S. participation in international organizations. On the President’s instruction the Department has been assessing the conclusions of the Lodge Commission to determine to what extent and how soon they can be acted upon.

During the past year we gave an interim accounting before a Congressional committee and recently briefed the Department’s Advisory Committee on International Organizations on where we stand. At the urging of the Advisory Committee and because we believe the time opportune, we have prepared a report on the current status of action on the Commission’s proposals. We describe what we have accomplished, obstacles we have encountered and promising areas for future action.

We propose to send copies to members of the Lodge Commission and the Advisory Committee, and will also make it available on request to nongovernmental organizations and the general public.

Here are the highlights:

1. The paramount value of the Lodge Commission’s effort is that it focused public attention on the realities of the UN system. Accomplishments and possibilities for action through the UN are real but shortcomings must be corrected if we are to rely on international institutions in the coming years.

2. We agree with the Commission’s position favoring reform rather than a basic restructuring of the UN system which we think is out of the question. We shall take advantage of opportunities and trends in the UN to press for specific reforms.

3. While we may differ with the Commission on relative priorities and on the prospects for implementation, the philosophy and conclusions of the report are consonant with the outlook and approach the U.S. Government has taken toward international organizations and in many cases reflect policies and initiatives already being actively pursued. These include streamlining the General Assembly; accommodating microstates without swamping the membership rolls; putting new life into the Security Council and the World Court; putting the UN’s financial and administrative house in order; providing better coordination of UN efforts in economic, social, and technical fields; strengthening peacekeeping; and channeling more aid through multilateral agencies. The Commission’s thinking also parallels ours in urging that the UN system extend its reach further into social and humanitarian fields (population, drug abuse, disaster relief) and the frontiers opened by the new technologies.

4. During the past year we selected about a third of the Commission’s recommendations as timely for action; some have already been accomplished. In particular, we made progress in (a) more effective policy coordination of economic, social and humanitarian activities and (b) drafting rules and building institutions to deal with global problems of population, drug abuse, aircraft hijacking, ocean resources and law of the seas, and environment.

5. On the other side of the ledger, we have found the going quite heavy in trying to follow through on certain recommendations. For example, despite our best efforts we made very little progress in streamlining General Assembly procedures, providing associate status for microstates, or stirring even a faint interest in reviving the World Court. Also, we have yet to get around the roadblock to workable and desirable peacekeeping arrangements, though we have recently circulated in the UN our ideas for peacekeeping ground rules which we had proposed more than two years ago in bilateral talks with the Soviet Delegation. Nor have we found a way to accommodate the legitimate demands of emerging world powers for more continuous seating in the Security Council.

6. The reason for the slow motion is that while there is a broad consensus on the conceptual level–that the UN should be reformed and its agenda and management modernized–there is only limited agreement at the political and programmatic levels. Another hurdle is that some important steps urged by the Commission require Congressional support (e.g. a substantially increased contribution to the UN Development Program) and compete with other international and domestic priorities.

7. Nevertheless, we believe there are still possibilities for action on additional recommendations which span a broad range of U.S. interests in the UN.

We believe this report will testify to the realistic and positive way we have responded to the work of the Lodge Commission.

Robert H. Miller

44. Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State/1/

New York, September 6, 1972, 1808Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, UN 6 KOR N. Confidential; Exdis. Repeated to Seoul, Tokyo, London, Moscow, and Hong Kong.

3112. Subj: Korea in 27th GA.

1. In course conversation on variety of subjects Sept 5, SYG Waldheim told Ambs Bush and Bennett that subject of Korea had been raised by Chou En-lai during SYG’s visit to Peking.

2. Chou had told Waldheim China believed Korean debate in 27th GA would be "healthful and helpful." When Waldheim expressed concern that polemic debate could interfere with progress of bilateral negotiations, Chou had asked "Why shouldn’t North Korea have chance to express its views in New York?"

3. Amb Bush observed that Chinese did not seem to understand that Korean issue in 27th GA would not be mere replay of China issue in 26th GA. Waldheim agreed issue would not be replay. Bush asserted that after careful vote count, we had concluded that "votes" are there for deferment both in General Comite and, by larger margin, in GA.

4. Waldheim said that during his visit to Belgrade, Yugoslav UN PermRep Mojsov had asserted just the opposite about prospects for deferment, noting that Algerian resolution will have "forty sponsors." Waldheim was not clear on parliamentary procedures involved, but said he understood Yugoslavs expected separate vote on individual paragraphs in Algerian res. Yugoslavs expected two paragraphs on UN presence in Korea would fail but had expressed confidence they would "get North Koreans to New York".

5. Bush conceded that if Korean issue split into component parts, Mojsov’s estimate in prospects might be nearer the mark. If Korean question to be debated, then there would undoubtedly be wide support for North Korean participation. Bennett suggested that North Koreans might try to torpedo current bilateral talks at right moment to influence course of issue in NY their way. While Waldheim was in Peking, Chinese had arranged that North Korean representatives (identities unspecified) visit SYG in his quarters. North Koreans had bluntly asked for his support of their position in NY. Waldheim said he had turned this request by suggesting to his visitors that they talk to South Koreans. North Koreans did not counter this suggestion./2/

/2/ In telegram 3111 from USUN, September 6, Bush reported that Waldheim had been surprised to hear Chou compare the Korean case with that of the two Germanies, and in effect support West Germany’s position that intra-German relations should be settled before either state was admitted to the UN. (Ibid., Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 393, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X)


45. Telegram From the Mission to the United Nations to the Department of State/1/

New York, September 7, 1972, 0105Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. Secret; Exdis.

3122. Subj: SYG’s Visit to Peking: Chinese World View.

1. SYG Waldheim discussed his recent visit to China with Ambs Bush and Bennett in some detail Sept 5. Waldheim had obviously found his trip interesting and personally stimulating. Waldheim generalized that Chinese had reflected bitter hostility toward USSR and a very positive attitude toward US. Waldheim had spent more than three hours with Chou En-lai, who had been forthcoming and even loquacious, and had also seen FonMin Chi Peng-tei. Latter did not seem to be very knowledgeable about foreign affairs. Vice Min Chiao Kwan-hua had been much more knowledgeable than FonMin Chi.

2. Whenever Soviets were mentioned, Chou En-lai spoke with indignation and made it very clear that USSR is "the enemy". Chinese had criticized US positions on Korea and Vietnam and Chou had spoken bitterly and almost obsessively of Dulles’ snub to him in Geneva in 1954, but there had always been "friendly undertone" to Chinese references to US. In Great Hall of People, Chou had made point of saying "this is chair where President Nixon was sitting." At Great Wall of China, escort had jocularly compared Waldheim’s stair-climbing performance to that of Presidents Nixon and Pompidou.

3. In context of criticism of Soviet "abandonment of Leninist attitudes" and Soviet belligerency on Chinese borders and elsewhere, Chou En-lai had compared Soviets unfavorably with US. "Laird at least tells the truth about US military posture. Laird is sincere, better than the Russians." Chou had said China did not have economic resources to build major nuclear capability but asserted that in any case, China would never resort to first use of atomic weapons and was not afraid of atomic weapons. "We are big and are going underground, and so are not afraid." Chou seemed to attach a good deal of importance to China’s "going underground".

4. Re international security arrangements, Chou had described World Disarmament Conference as "Soviet sham" which PRC could not support. Perhaps paradoxically, he had said that "disarmament should not be arranged in small committees" and had been critical of SALT and CCD. Latter efforts tended to preserve nuclear monopoly of super powers and to permit them to continue to improve such weaponry.

5. In viewing evolution in PRC relations with US, Chou had said that beginning of dialogue with US goes back to Hammarskjold visit to China in 1955. Chou took view that in his conversations with President Nixon, latter had "accepted one-China principle." There had been no Chinese reference to 1972 US elections except in context of discussion of Middle East prospects. Chinese had discussed Vietnam with Waldheim but had said absolutely nothing new. Chinese had reiterated all-out support of North Vietnamese.

6. Bush asked whether there had been any reference to prisoners of war, a subject to which USG very sensitive. Waldheim said Chinese had said nothing significant on this subject in Vietnam context. In other connections (e.g., Bangladesh) Chinese had reflected sense of their own virtuousness with respect to release of prisoners of war. (Waldheim noted in passing that Chiao Kwan-hua had been man who negotiated prompt release of South Korean prisoners of war at end of Korean conflict.) Chinese also recalled that after border hostilities with India, Chinese had returned not only their prisoners but also material that had been captured.

7. Chinese had been very positive in their attitude toward UN. They frankly revealed that they had not expected to be admitted to UN in 1972 and therefore had not had people trained and prepared to assume responsibility for conduct of UN responsibilities. They continue to be handicapped in this regard and would assume responsibilities in new areas of UN affairs only as they were able to prepare personnel to do competent job. Waldheim understood Vice Min Chiao would come to 27th GA and that Min Chi might also attend. Chinese had not referred to US 25 percent UN assessment issue, but had asked what Soviet assessment percentage was and asserted unequivocally that PRC, as soon as it was able to, should pay 7 percent instead of the current 4 percent. In UN connection, Chinese had made it clear that they thought
"super power" was bad word that should not be applied to China.

8. Chinese were hostile to India. "Behind India is always the Soviet Union." Chou had been very upset about Bangladesh issue, which then active in SC. Turn of events in NY had made atmosphere in sub-continent worse than before, Chou held. He was resentful of way Russians were exploiting Bangladesh issue to embarrass PRC (Waldheim thought Chinese fully understood what Russians were up to) but assured Waldheim that Chinese veto threat not idle one (it was at this point that Waldheim had sent Sir Robert Jackson to see Mujib).

9. Waldheim implied that Chinese have particularly favorable attitudes toward French. General de Gaulle had been recalled most favorably by Chinese. Waldheim did not report any Chinese reference to British.

10. Dept repeat as appropriate.


46. Telegram From the Department of State to the Mission to the United Nations/1/

Washington, October 3, 1972, 0038Z.

/1/ Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Box 303, Agency Files, USUN, Vol. X. Confidential; Exdis.

179962. Subject: Observer Status for GDR in Second Committee. Ref: USUN 3601./2/

/2/ In telegram 3601 from USUN, September 30, Bush described a telephone conversation that he had had with Waldheim on September 29. Soviet Foreign Minister Gromyko had urged Waldheim to invite the German Democratic Republic to take part in the Second Committee’s discussion of environmental matters as an observer. Waldheim had been noncommittal. (Ibid., RG 59, Central Files 1970–73, UN 6 GER E)

1. Following confirming Herz/Phillips telcon.

2. Our position on GDR observer status in any form at this GA prior to FRG–GDR inner-German agreement and Four-Power understanding on continued validity of Quadripartite rights/3/ rests on two essential points: (A) SYG invitation to any state to participate in committee work is without precedent; there are no grounds in UN procedures or past practice for granting such status and it is undesirable both from point of principle and precedent to depart from established practice (if necessary, you could point out that our willingness to work out arrangement for GDR presence at Stockholm is not comparable case as GDR would not have been present at invitation of a UN organization or official but at invitation either of Conference President or Swedish Government. This, had it been accepted would have carried no connotations for their relationship to GA); (B) We can command sufficient support to defeat any move putting issue to vote (we would, of course, expect FRG support on the issue if it came to vote).

/3/ Reference is to the Quadripartite Agreement on Berlin, signed at Berlin, September 3, 1971. (Department of State Bulletin, September 27, 1971, pp. 318–322)

3. We therefore conclude that if we clearly stand firm on this issue, it will not be posed prior to inner-German agreement, and you should therefore consult with Gehlhoff and then indicate to SYG at earliest opportunity that there has been no change in our position that any observer status for GDR in General Assembly context must await completion of inner-German agreement and related understanding among the Four Powers. In the meantime, we will maintain that GDR does not fulfill generally accepted criteria for UN observer status (membership in specialized agencies and recognition by majority of member states).


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