784.02/1–450: Telegram

The Ambassador in Egypt (Caffery) to the Secretary of State


8. Egyptian authorities are very fearful of a leak especially in view Newsweek article December 261 and in case of another leak might run for cover (Tel Aviv telegram 924 to Department).2 Egyptians assume that as in past Israel delegate will approach Egyptian [Page 667] delegate at Geneva and in that case Egyptians will, contrary to attitude in past, agree to talk.

Egyptians particularly do not want Azzam Pasha3 to know anything of this as he is bitterly opposed to direct talks.4

Sent Department 8; Department pass Tel Aviv 1.

  1. The article stated that top secret negotiations between Tel Aviv and Cairo were under way.
  2. Not printed; but see footnote 1, Foreign Relations, 1949, vol. vi, p. 1558.
  3. Abdul Rahman Azzam, Secretary-General of the Arab League.
  4. The Department of State relayed this telegram to Tel Aviv at 10:49 a. m., January 4. The American Ambassador in Israel, James G. McDonald, reported the visit to his residence of Israeli Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett on January 5, at the Ambassador’s request, to discuss the telegram. Mr. Sharett was said to be “evidently pleased and promised prompt action at Geneva and pledged utmost secrecy” (telegram 10, January 5, from Tel Aviv, 784.02/1–550).