187. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Saudi Arabia 1

223. Following summarizes memorandum re Buraimi given to British Ambassador November 3:2

US concerned regarding possible repercussions recent British action. Coming at this time action may offer new opportunities to those seeking destroy Western influence in Near East and make it [Page 286] increasingly difficult persuade Near Eastern nations adopt peaceful measures in settlement disputes.

We agree with UK it would be preferable not discuss Buraimi issue in SC if other arrangements possible. We do not believe in present context events we will be in position dissuade SAG from asking SC consideration without offering alternatives. Neither do we believe in the event matter went to SC that we could at this time assure UK our support. In desire examine other avenues of approach we suggest consideration following possible courses of action:

Direct talks between UK and SAG concerning current questions including Buraimi, recovery Aramco equipment on Aden Protectorate borders, continuation oil exploration in arbitration zone allotted to Saudi Arabia’s concessionaires.
Return to arbitration by withdrawal British–led forces, substitution neutral supervisory commission within zone assisted by complements of police from both sides, and reconstitution arbitration tribunal with new members.
If neither of foregoing acceptable, peaceful solution in some other form.

If these approaches appear to be helpful to solution US willing discuss them with SAG.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 780.022/11–455. Confidential. Drafted by Newsom and approved by Wilkins. Sent also to London (by pouch); repeated to Dhahran; and pouched to USUN.
  2. The memorandum was given to Makins by Hoover in the course of a conversation concerning a number of Middle East problems; filed with a memorandum of the conversation, ibid., 874.2614/11–355.