780.5/6–1053: Telegram

No. 138
The Ambassador in Turkey (McGhee) to the Department of State


1479. During informal conversation after Foreign Minister’s dinner June 8 for General Ridgway, Prime Minister held forth at some length on question ME defense. Prime Minister said that he had read most carefully address of Secretary Dulles made June and noted that Secretary considered it necessary delay creation MEDO until Arab States more amenable. He thereupon repeated Turk “setting up shop” theory expressed in Foreign Office memo June 1 (reference Embtel 1454 June 2 and Embdesp 791 June 3)1 emphasizing that US, UK, France and Turkey should proceed immediately toward setting up formal MEDO in hope that after it was going concern Arab States would desire participate.

Prime Minister asked why Secretary had lauded General Naguib, who is quoted as saying that Malenkov was peace-loving man (see Embdesp 776 May 28 enclosure 2,2 reporting Secretary’s conversation with President). Prime Minister expressed doubt that international interest in Suez and Egyptian sovereignty were, as Secretary indicated, not irreconcilable. Prime Minister stated in light vein, but apparently meaning it, that if British are forced withdraw their troops from Egypt Turks would be glad have them stationed in Turkey.

Prime Minister mentioned conversation which he had with Nuri Said in London, in course which he had asked Nuri whether Iraq could break with Arab League and join with Turkey in creating nucleus for ME defense. Although Nuri indicated this not presently possible, he intimated it might be in near future.

  1. Neither printed, but see footnotes 2 and 3, Document 141.
  2. Neither printed. (611.82/5–2853)