886A.2553/7–1050: Telegram

The Ambassador in Saudi Arabia (Childs) to the Secretary of State

confidential

19. Deptel 8 July 7,1 London telegram 40 July 3. While agreeing there is no sense in British policy advancing in SA at expense US position, we do feel recent events here indicate British efforts buttress their position (Embtels 372 June 222 and 159 March 143 repeated [Page 62]London as 87 and 35 for details). Long paramount in NE, they unconsciously resent growing US role, believing they still best equipped handle problems area, traditionally their sphere influence in which they may consider us as interlopers. Doubtless Foreign Office officers appreciate US role here, but UK Embassy officers Jidda already accused by members British community of lack force opposing US companies, cannot be expected play down UK interests in difference underlying importance US role which they, of course, also recognize.

Announced agreement use of sterling desired by Aramco very gratifying, but I feel we must remain watchful lest future UK appeals on behalf weakened economy result in crippling restrictions on US oil companies operating in areas. Sincerely hope Embassy London telegram 40 is sound analysis, but basis local evidence, I feel British will do all possible regain dominant position SA.

Sent Department 19; repeated info London 3.

Childs
  1. Not printed; it requested the Embassy’s comments on telegram 40 from London, July 3, supra. (886A.2553/7–750)
  2. Ante, p. 57.
  3. Not printed. It read, in part: “Believe some British circles particularly concerned about economic advantages we have gained in area which they have regarded as their special preserve even while reconciling themselves to our predominant position east coast SA.… Fact our unique advantages here ultimately benefit British should always be emphasized.” (786A.022/3–1450)