611.61/5–2252: Telegram

No. 503
The Acting Secretary of State to the Embassy in the Soviet Union 1

top secret

829. Points raised in ur 1861 May 20 [22]2 receiving most careful consideration in Dept. We have for some time been exploring various courses of action re BW campaign which wld help meet needs of situation and perhaps in some degree serve purpose of public statement suggested last para urtel. One approach which we think has some promise wld be to counter Commie charges BW in Kor through initiative in UN. This cld be done in SC, where we cld almost certainly force Sovs to veto res proposing impartial Comm of inquiry (possibly composed of India and Swed) to investigate charges with aid of scientists of internatl reputation and other experts, Comm to be granted freedom of movement in areas concerned. Fol expected veto, we may offer another res condemning Commies for blocking impartial investigations and undermining UN efforts maintain internatl peace and security by continuing spread false charges. Sovs wld undoubtedly veto second res as well.

Opportunity for such action will arise when Malik assumes SC presidency June and when first report Disarmament Comm comes before SC. As you know, in Disarmament Comm Malik has made long speeches on BW question. If as we expect, Malik repeats Commie charges in SC when it considers Disarmament Comm Report, we cld counter these charges by introducing separate agenda item leading to formulation above res.

Alternative possibility wld be to take initiative in advance SC debate on Disarmament Comm Report, submitting our proposal for SC inquiry without delay.

Decision on foregoing wld depend inter alia on fol factors:

Is Commie campaign tapering off and will our initiative serve revive it? Our estimate is that campaign will not die down and on contrary may increase in intensity in June. Sov veto wld therefore be helpful to us from propaganda standpoint.
Are we prepared face SC debate which might range over all aspects of Korean problem and perhaps other Far Eastern issues as well? We must assume Malik will attempt broaden discussion this way, bringing in PW issue, withdrawal of troops, charges of atrocities, [Page 981] continuation of armis negots, etc. We do not believe we wld find such a discussion unduly harmful at present.
Wld our friends in SC and other states with forces in Kor support an initiative of this kind? Answer to this question wld have to be obtained by consultation. We are informally consulting British here.

Before making decision on foregoing, we wld appreciate ur urgent comment.

  1. Drafted by David H. Popper and Eric Stein (UNA/UNP) and cleared by Ward P. Allen (EUR), Barbour (EUR/EE), Matthews (G), John M. Allison (FE), Nitze (S/P), and Howland H. Sargent (P). Matthews signed for the Acting Secretary of State.
  2. Document 499.