236. Memorandum of Conversation0


  • Greece: Missile Bases Issue and Other Military Questions


  • Mr. Phedon Annino Cavalierato, Counselor of Greek Embassy
  • Murat W. Williams, GTI

During my conversation with Mr. Cavalierato today, he called attention to a series of articles by Mr. Lambrakis in the Athenian [Page 612] newspaper Vima. To Mr. Cavalierato the most important point made by Mr. Lambrakis was that the missile bases issue would not be so important in Greece now were it not for the fact that Greece had been relegated to a “secondary place in the Western alliance”.

When I questioned this, Mr. Cavalierato said he thought that Greece was in a secondary position both because of the lack of sympathy among its allies for Greece’s position on Cyprus and because of the favoritism shown towards Turkey in the military preparedness of NATO. He said he was speaking primarily of the “favoritism” shown Turkey in the supply of equipment—above all, naval equipment.

In response, I pointed out to Mr. Cavalierato that the supply of ships and guns to Turkey was determined by the military requirements of the Alliance as judged by the military authorities. Turkey’s geographical position, especially with respect to Russia and the straits, would seem to require that Turkey have ships to enable her to perform the missions thus imposed upon her.

Mr. Cavalierato said he realized that I looked on the problem this way, but he pointed out that the Greek people could not help but think of Turkey’s growing military strength in terms of her “unfriendly” attitude towards Greece and the centuries of Greco-Turkish conflict which lay behind it. I reminded him again that Greece and Turkey were still allies.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 781.00/3–2458. Secret. Drafted by Williams.