890D.01/2–1846: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant)

secret

1786. For Wadsworth from Henderson. I have learned from returning members of American delegation that US resolution on Syrian-Lebanese demand for withdrawal of foreign troops was actually introduced in Feb 16 meeting of Security Council at specific [Page 773]request of Faris al-Khoury contained in a penciled note to you during the session, but that when Khoury spoke subsequent thereto he did not indicate any support or satisfaction with the American resolution. I understand that this was due to further instructions he received from Syrian Govt during intermission.

You, of course, are familiar with these events and in view of rather bitter criticism of our position made to Porter by Jabri (Damascus 39, Feb 18) we feel strongly that it is incumbent on Khoury to inform Jabri as soon as possible of true facts regarding US position at Security Council, of which you know all details. If Khoury is unwilling to do this himself, then we consider you upon your return to Levant should explain situation to Jabri making it clear to him that US position was in full conformity with policy which this Govt has adopted throughout in support of Syrian and Lebanese desire for withdrawal of foreign troops from their territory.

Sent to London, repeated to Cairo, Damascus, Beirut. [Henderson]

Byrnes

[Part of the Syrian delegation at the UN meeting at London returned to Damascus on February 27. The following morning, Nazem al-Kudsi, Syrian Minister to the United States and member of the delegation, informed Mr. Porter that he had already given to the Prime Minister complete details of the American position including the fact “that American proposal was presented as result of note which Kudsi drafted and Khoury signed. Kudsi told Jabri that had Americans not made proposal, weak and unsatisfactory Dutch proposal would have been urged by Bevin.” (telegram 41, February 28, from Damascus, filed under 890D.01/2–2846). On April 13, Mr. Porter reported in despatch 422: “The pessimistic and critical reaction of Premier Jabri to the American proposal, as reported earlier, resulted, he informed us in rather embarrassed fashion some days later, from the fact that Faris Bey had completely neglected to keep the Government informed on developments in London …” (890D.00/4–1346.]