“The Pentagon talks of 1947” between the United States and the United Kingdom concerning the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean 1

1. Previous general conversations with the British on the Middle East had taken place in April 1944, when Wallace Murray, the then Director of the Office of Near Eastern and African Affairs, held discussions with officials of the British Foreign Office. For documentation on these conversations, see Foreign Relations, 1944, vol. iii, p. 2 and pp. 28 ff.; and ibid., vol. v, pp. 6, 7.

Note: The following is a table of reference by document to the various subjects and countries discussed below:

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I. Documents Reviewing the Genesis of the Talks and Detailing the Department’s Preparations for Them:
Chronological summary of correspondence and exchanges of views leading up to discussions with the British on the Middle East 488
Annex 1: Memorandum by Loy W. Henderson of a conversation with Ernest Bevin and Lewis Douglas, September 9, 1947: Near East, Greece, Palestine, Egypt, Cyrenaica, Transjordan, Iraq and Iran 496
Annex 2: Telegram 5006 from London, September 16, 1947: preparations for the talks 502
Annex 3: Ernest Bevin to Secretary of State Marshall on social and economic development of the Middle East 503
Chronology of developments stemming from Mr. Bevin’s memorandum regarding raising the standards of living in the Middle East 505
The British and American positions 511
Specific current questions:
A. Military (non-technical) questions 521
1. Bases: Egypt, Cyrenaica, Transjordan, Kuwait, Iraq, Palestine and Cyprus 521
2. Military missions and military assistance: Egypt, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, Greece and Ethiopia 523
3. Arms policy 527
4. Central African road 528
B. Political questions 529
1. Problems involving a threat to the peace: Greece, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Palestine and French North Africa 529
2. The Communist problem 531
3. Internal political situations: Greece, Turkey, Iran, Arabian Peninsula, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, other Middle Eastern countries and French North Africa 532
4. Special British treaty relationships: Kuwait, Bahrein, Oman, Muscat, Sheikhdoms of the Trucial Coast, Iraq and Egypt 535
5. British Middle East Office 537
6. Cultural and informational activity 537
7. The Turkish Straits 537
8. The Palestine question 538
9. The Arab League 538
10. Transjordan 539
11. Greater Syria 539
12. The Egyptian question 540
13. Disposition of the Italian colonies 543
C. Politico-Economic questions 544
1. Improvement of living standards in the Middle East through development of resources and industrialization: Iraq irrigation scheme, The Tana Dam project, Egypt, Palestine, Syria and the Lebanon, Arabia, other Arabian States, Ethiopia, Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan 544
2. The dollar-sterling problem 548
3. Technical and economic aid to Middle Eastern countries 551
4. Petroleum in the Middle East and pipelines: Saudi Arabia, Bahrein, Kuwait, Qatar, Yemen, Iraq, Egypt, the Levant States, Palestine, Ethiopia, Libya, Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan 551
5. Development of U.S. aviation in the Middle East 556
6. American economic interests in the Middle East 556
7. British economic interests in the Middle East 557
8. Organized Anglo-American cooperation to handle economic problems of the Middle East 558
9. Proposed establishment of an economic committee for the Near East by the United Nations Organization 559
Memorandum by Raymond A. Hare of a conversation between officers of the State and Defense Departments to attain a consensus, October 9, 1947 561
II. Documents Prepared During the Talks:
Suggested remarks by the Acting, Secretary of State at the opening of the US–UK talks on the Middle East, October 16, 1947 563
Draft notes for remarks by the United Kingdom at the opening of the US–UK talks on the Middle East, October 16, 1947 565
Substance of response of the Acting Secretary of State to the British Ambassador at the first meeting on October 16, 1947 568
Introductory paper on the Middle East submitted informally by the United Kingdom Representatives 569
The American paper 575
Memorandum by Raymond A. Hare on consideration in support of policy in respect of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East drawn up after consultation with the British Group, November 5, 1947 576
Memorandum on policy in the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean by the British Group 580
General statement by the American Group 582
Statements by the United States and United Kingdom Groups:
Retention of British military rights in Egypt 584
Assurance of British strategic facilities in Cyrenaica 586
Disposition of the former Italian colonies other than Cyrenaica 588
The maintenance of the British position in the Sudan 590
Iran 592
Turkey 593
Greece 593
Iraq as a factor in the maintenance of stability in the Middle East 94
Anglo-American interest in Ethiopia 596
Current political and economic questions in Saudi Arabia 597
Political and strategic questions relating to the Persian Gulf sheikhdoms 599
Political and economic questions relating to Yemen 601
Palestine 602
Transjordan and the Greater Syria movement 603
Political and economic situation in Syria and Lebanon 604
The Arab League 606
Political, strategic, and economic questions relating to Afghanistan 607
Pakistan 609
French North Africa 609
Cyprus 610
Subversive activities in the Middle East 610
Coordination of informational and cultural activities 612
Supply of arms and equipment to Middle Eastern countries 613
Anglo-Iranian Standard Oil pipeline 613
Summary memorandum of informal conversations relating to social and economic affairs in the Middle East (United States and United Kingdom) 614
Closing remarks by the Acting Secretary of State 620
III. Documents Dealing With the Period After the Talks:
The Acting Secretary of State to President Truman, November 24, 1947. 623
Michael letter No. 1, November 24, 1947 (Editorial Note) 624
Michael letter No. 5, December 8, 1947 624
Michael letter No. 5a, December 10, 1947 626
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[392] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[393] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[394] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[395] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[397] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[399] Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of South Asian Affairs (Hare)

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[401] Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

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[402] Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of South Asian Affairs (Hare)

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[404] General Statement by the American Group

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[405] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[406] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[407] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[408] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[419] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[420] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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[421] Statement by the United States and the United Kingdom Groups

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