The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Lebanon (Mattison)45
81. If you are asked by authorities of Levant States re attitude this Govt in case simultaneous withdrawal Brit and French troops cannot be arranged, you may say that in our view, while complete withdrawal all Brit and French troops greatly to be preferred, we would look with favor on any withdrawal in view our basic attitude regarding continued presence of foreign troops in territory of members of United Nations. Consequently we feel that British withdrawal regardless of French action, and vice versa, would be in line with the policy which we have publicly enunciated.
Sent Beirut, repeated Damascus, Paris and London.
- In an undated, informal note to Under Secretary of State Acheson, Mr. Henderson stated: “This telegram is being sent at the urgent informal request of the British Govt which feels that its decision to withdraw troop[s] from Syria and Lebanon regardless of what the French do is being unfairly criticized by the Syrians and Lebanese.”↩