The Secretary of State to the Secretary of Defense (Wilson)1


My Dear Mr. Secretary: I refer to my letter of June 3, 1953,2 urging that Air Force funds be made available in the amount of $500,000 for immediate payment by the American Minister in Tripoli to the Libyan Government.

The American Minister now reports that the present crisis in Libyan affairs may result in the resignation of the Prime Minister at any moment and that a payment of $1,000,000 may make it possible to forestall this unfortunate development by enabling the Prime Minister to point to a substantial payment from the United States for economic aid as a direct result of his efforts.3

I consider it to be in the interest of the United States that Prime Minister Muntasser remain in office and I hereby confirm this Department’s [Page 575]oral recommendation of June 18 that the payment mentioned in my letter of June 3 should be increased to $1,000,000.4

Sincerely yours,

John Foster Dulles
  1. This letter was drafted by Cyr (AF) and cleared by Jernegan (NEA)
  2. Supra.
  3. Telegram 962 from Tripoli, June 19. (711.56373/6–1953)
  4. A letter from Maj. Gen. Clark L. Ruffner, Military Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, dated Aug. 19, 1953 confirmed information previously given informally to the Department of State that on June 19 the Secretary of the Air Force directed the Finance Officer at Wheelus Air Force Base to deliver to the Minister in Tripoli a check for $1 million, payable to the United Kingdom of Libya. (711.56373/8–1953)