110.11 DU/2–2753: Circular telegram

No. 2
The Secretary of State to Certain Diplomatic and Consular Offices 1


907. Secretary plans make trip Near East and South Asia in May. Following tentative schedule may be subject variation due travel conditions:

May 11–12 Cairo (including regional conf US Ambassadors);
13 Riyadh (Dhahran, time permitting);
14 thru 16 New Delhi;
17–18 Karachi;
19 Baghdad;
20 thru 22 Beirut
23 Jerusalem and Tel Aviv
24 Tripoli

Request you inform government re Secretary’s proposed visit your country and ascertain if time acceptable. Stress confidential nature of approach, pending approval of governments concerned and announcement of trip from Washington.2

FYI. Department hopes capitalize on announcement of trip with strong statement from White House and therefore desires avoid sapping effect through piece-meal leakage of plans. End FYI.3

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In making approach explain purpose trip make personal contact with Near East and Asian leaders and obtain first-hand information.

New Delhi and Karachi only: At your discretion you may mention that Secretary does not plan take up question “Asian Defense Pact”.

  1. Sent to Cairo, Jidda, New Delhi, Karachi, Beirut, Baghdad, Damascus, Amman, Tel Aviv, Tripoli, and Dhahran.
  2. Circular telegram 911, Feb. 28, advised the same Embassies and Consulates to stress that the Secretary of State’s visit would be informal and it was desired that entertainment be kept to a minimum. (110.11 DU/2–2853)
  3. Circular telegram 936, Mar. 9, reported that because of leaks about the Secretary’s forthcoming trip he had issued a statement at a press conference that day. The statement pointed out that the trip was being made at the request of the President, and its purpose was to gather facts rather than make specific proposals. “As first Secretary of State to visit some of these countries, sees trip as opportunity to dispel misunderstanding and to develop closer relations between US and these friendly nations.” (110.11 DU/3–953) The text of the Mar. 9 press release is printed in Department of State Bulletin, Mar. 23, 1953, p. 431.

    Circular telegram 944, Mar. 11, advised Embassies and Consulates that publicity treating the Secretary’s forthcoming trip should emphasize, among other things, the fact that he would be the first Secretary of State to visit those countries and he looked on the trip as an opportunity to dispel misunderstandings and develop close relations between the United States and friendly nations.