206. Telegram From the Embassy in Lebanon to the Department of State1
566. President tells me he talked at nine this morning with Malik who requested instructions attitude to adopt toward Japanese resolution (USUN’s 85).2Malik added discussion would commence in SC within ten hours.
Chamoun said Malik had reported US delegation felt it should vote in favor as otherwise USSR would call for special session of GA.
Chamoun instructed Malik to use his influence against adoption of Japanese resolution. He said, “If your forces are compelled to withdraw, it will be regarded as a victory for the opposition and your friends in Middle East will feel let down.” Chamoun added opinion unarmed UN force contemplated by Japanese resolution would be ineffective in sealing frontier and preventing further infiltration from Syria.
In broader sphere, President said he was convinced if US did not move affirmatively after its landing in Lebanon, we would lose the Middle East. In response to my questions, he indicated somewhat evasively this meant military operations against Iraq and Syria with corollary of involvement with Egypt, although he did not spell out their names. Chamoun said he could predict that within six months of our withdrawal from Lebanon, trouble would break out again in Middle East in an exacerbated form and at that time our chances of resisting being thrown out of Middle East would be much less bright.
Following this presentation, I thought it wise to go over points outlined Deptel 78.3 Chamoun listened with attention and indicated[Page 351]
he had not received a comprehensive summary from Malik of latter’s conversation with Secretary July 19.4
In response to my question whether there might not be a middle ground between all-out war in Middle East now as he and Malik seem to advocate and our instant withdrawal, I pointed out that even if Japanese resolution were adopted, Hammarskjold would have his hands full and much time would necessarily elapse before he could send expanded UN force to Lebanon and before we left country. I offered personal thought display of US might and promptitude with which it was manifested last week might serve to instill a feeling of caution in Nasser and Soviet Government. I did not think our troops would withdraw precipitously nor in advance of proper arrangements, if Japanese resolution were adopted, for staging in of UN observer force.
Main burden of Chamoun’s argument can be summarized as follows:
- He is very much opposed to adoption of Japanese resolution.5
- He prefers US forces build up and move in against what he regards as Nasser-subservient regimes in Middle East.
- If this is not done, Chamoun predicts that in six months there will be such a drift toward Nasser in Iraq as to bring that country within UAR; and that Kuwait and Saudi Arabia will follow.
- Source: Department of State, Central Files, 320.5783A/7–2158. Secret; Niact. Repeated to London, Paris, and USUN.↩
- Telegram 85 from USUN, July 19, transmitted the text of the resolution submitted by Japan to the Security Council that day. (Ibid., 320.5783A/7–1958) The resolution is summarized in Document 195.↩
- Not found.↩
- See Document 198.↩
- Malik called on Dulles in his office on the afternoon of July 21 to stress Lebanon’s objections to adoption of the Japanese resolution. Dulles replied that the United States planned to vote for the resolution because it would “enlarge the responsibility of the United Nations in connection with the Lebanese question and would provide for taking certain additional measures to ensure the integrity and independence of Lebanon.” He did agree, however, to support a Lebanese request for postponement of consideration of the resolution to allow the Lebanese Government to reevaluate the situation. (Memorandum of conversation, July 21; Department of State, Central Files, 783A.00/7–2158) That evening, the Department telegraphed instructions to the Embassy in Beirut to approach President Chamoun and outline the Secretary’s arguments in favor of supporting the Japanese resolution and preventing an open split between the United States and Lebanon at the U.N. (Telegram 393 to Beirut, July 21; ibid., 320.5783A/7–2158) Both documents are included in the microfiche supplement.↩