483. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in France1

1684. Reference London’s 2456 to Dept.2 In response to press inquiries, Department spokesman said this afternoon: “The American Embassy in London has reminded the British Ministry of Defense of the provisions of the Mutual Defense Assistance agreement between the two countries with respect to military equipment provided by the United States to Great Britain under this agreement. It was pointed out that under these agreements such equipment is to be used only for the defense of the North Atlantic Treaty area. The importance of strict observance of these provisions was emphasized under the present circumstances. Similar representations are being made to the French Government. Other governments in the Middle Eastern area have been reminded that military equipment furnished by the US is for defensive purposes only.”

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French Minister was called in today and informed officially in above sense. He replied that he would promptly inform his government.3

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 741.5–MSP/11–256. Confidential; Niact. Drafted by Jones (EUR/WE) and approved by Elbrick who signed for Dulles. Repeated Niact to London.
  2. Telegram 2465, November 2, reported that the Embassy had reminded the British Defense Ministry of provisions in the U.S. military assistance agreement with the United Kingdom to the effect that aircraft delivered to the British Government would be used only for defense of the NATO area and of the importance of strict observance of these provisions in connection with the Suez operation. (Ibid.)
  3. Telegram 456 to Tel Aviv, November 3, instructed the Embassy to remind the Israeli Government as soon as possible that military supplies purchased under Mutual Security legislation should be used for purposes of internal security and legitimate self-defense only. (Ibid., 784A.5–MSP/11–356) Telegram 501 from Tel Aviv, November 5, reported that the warning had been conveyed to an official of the Foreign Ministry who promised to relay it to Foreign Minister Meir. (Idid., 784A.5–MSP/11–556)