The Assistant Secretary of State for United Nations Affairs (Hickerson) to the United States Representative at the United Nations (Lodge)
Dear Cabot: You have doubtless seen Ambassador Butterworth’s telegram No. 920, February 25, 5:00 p.m., from Stockholm, in response to our telegram sent at your request that we take some soundings from the Swedes about the possible availability of Erik Boheman for the post of UN Secretary General.
The Swedish Government immediately telegraphed Ambassador Boheman about this inquiry and he discussed it with us Monday night and Tuesday morning. Boheman said flatly that he did not want the job, that he felt that there was little likelihood that the Soviets would accept him, and that he hoped very much that his name would not be actively considered for the post. He said that we would receive our reply from the Swedish Government, and he predicted that the reply would be that the Swedish Government thought it unlikely that Boheman’s name would break the deadlock with the Soviets; but that if a situation developed in which agreement could be reached on Boheman and on no one else, the Swedish Government would probably be disposed to urge him to accept. He did not say for sure whether he would accept, but I gathered that if the Swedish Government pressed him strongly enough he would probably do so although with reluctance.[Page 441]
Ambassador Boheman expressed his appreciation of the confidence in him shown by our inquiry of the Swedish Government. He clearly does not want the job and hopes that his name will not receive active consideration. He asked that I keep in touch with him and let him know before we formally propose his name if that situation ever arises. I agreed to do this.
I enclose a one-page biographic sketch of Boheman prepared in the Department.