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186. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in Israel 1

87. French and British reactions to preliminary proposals (Deptel 54 to Tel Aviv)2 have been generally negative. French strongly urge Western powers hold to previous practice arguing inter alia: 1) West should not give Ben Gurion what is denied Sharett; 2) Further relaxation would provoke Arabs and might lead to their demanding UNGA consideration of Jerusalem question; 3) France is having enough difficulties with Arabs at present. British agree with French for reasons 1 and 2 above.

Accordingly USG has revised its preliminary views (Deptel 54) and proposes authorize Ambassador Tel Aviv to act along following lines, in event PriMin and FonMin two different individuals:

Initial courtesy call could be made on PriMin in Jerusalem as before, explaining to him that because of US policy on Jerusalem question which continues under UN consideration it will not be possible for Ambassador to call on FonMin in Jerusalem and that he will therefore be calling on PriMin but only for the most important matters;
FonMin would continue visit or send high-ranking representatives to Tel Aviv from time to time and would maintain Liaison Office there. In order facilitate business, Ambassador would continue authorize Deputy Chief of Mission and lesser officials Embassy to discuss matters of lesser importance with officials of Israel Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem.
Re social and official functions in Jerusalem, attendance will be left Ambassador’s discretion subject considerations mentioned para (d) Deptel 54.

Issuance of press statement would be considered only if necessary correct false impressions US policy and practice.

Embassies London Paris and Ankara should inform Foreign Offices.3 Dept hopes they will be willing instruct their mission [Page 345]chiefs along similar lines. Embassy Tel Aviv should discuss with friendly colleagues and enlist their support.4 Advise result.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 601.0084A/8–955. Confidential. Drafted by Wilkins and Bergus and approved by Allen, who signed for Dulles. Also sent to London, Paris, and Ankara. Repeated to Amman and Jerusalem.
  2. Document 176.
  3. The Embassy in London reported that British Foreign Office officials supported the Department’s suggestions and were instructing the British Ambassador in Israel to proceed along similar lines. The Foreign Office also understood that the French and the Turks were sending their representatives parallel instructions. (Telegram 516, August 11; Department of State, Central Files, 784A.00/8–1155) The Embassy in Paris informed the Department of French support as well. (Telegram 656, August 12;ibid., 784A.00/8–1255)
  4. The Embassy in Tel Aviv reported that the British, French, and Turkish missions in Israel had received instructions paralleling the Department’s. (Telegram 128, August 17;ibid., 601.0084A/8–1755)