616. Telegram From the Consulate General at Dhahran to the Department of State1

243. From Ambassador Wadsworth. Deptel 1822 and Contel 241.3 My first presentation to King at formal audience November 23 was USG plan as outlined Department reference telegram for meeting world oil shortages. Knowing from earlier talk with Khalid that King had no intention modify SAG position re closing Bahrain pipeline, barring British and French tankers and prohibiting shipments to British and French areas (except India, Pakistan, Ceylon, Canada and South Africa) until after British-French forces had quit Egypt, I stressed assurance that in common interest we would keep Saudi interests uppermost in mind and minimize effects thereon of redistribution.

King and Counselors listened carefully. Only question was would plan be put into effect, with resulting easing British-French shortages, before British-French forces quit Egypt. I reiterated British-French dilemma was of their own creation and said it would seem clear their forces would have left Egypt before our redistribution plan could be brought into effect. This seemed to satisfy them.

King then said: “I have great confidence in USG and approve its plan for redistribution of oil, confident at same time USG will minimize loss which Saudi Arabia will sustain as result its implementation. We will welcome plan after withdrawal British-French forces in accordance UN resolutions, and thereafter it may be possible to restore relations with countries as before.”

Davies and Ohliger4 of Aramco tell me King vouchsafed similar statement to them November 25.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 880.2553/11–2656. Secret; Priority. Received at 4:11 p.m. Repeated to Jidda, London, and Paris.
  2. Document 586.
  3. Telegram 241, November 26, contained a brief overview of Wadsworth’s visit to Riyadh, November 22–25, including a listing of conversations and the topics discussed. (Department of State, Central Files, 611.86A/11–2656)
  4. F.W. Ohliger, Vice President of Aramco.