Memorandum of Conversation, by the Director of the Office of United Nations Political and Security Affairs (Wainhouse)

  • Subject:
  • Appointment of a UN Secretary General
  • Participants:
  • Mr. George Ignatieff—Canadian Embassy
  • Mr. David W. WainhouseUNP

Mr. Ignatieff came in this afternoon to inquire about the problem of the selection of a new UN Secretary General. He stated very frankly that Mr. Pearson would very much like to be chosen for the post. He did not give much credence to the rumor floating about that the USSR is not unfriendly to the Pearson candidacy and wondered whether the British activity in New York on Pearson’s behalf at this time is not tactically unwise. Mr. Ignatieff confessed that he did not understand why Mr. Pearson wanted the post. He stated that Pearson is the “heir apparent” to the Canadian premiership. He supposed the reason why Mr. Pearson wanted the post is that he is extremely interested in the UN and its success.

I told Mr. Ignatieff that the matter of the selection of a new Secretary General, so far as the United States is concerned, is in the hands of Ambassador Lodge who has the widest possible discretion in this regard. I also told Mr. Ignatieff that the matter is a very delicate one and that any information with respect to our position would have to be obtained from Ambassador Lodge.

David W. Wainhouse