217. Editorial Note

Shortly after delivering the text of Foreign Secretary Lloyd’s message to Secretary Dulles ( supra ), Lord Hood delivered to the Department a copy of the reply from Prime Minister Macmillan to Chairman Khrushchev which Hood noted was being delivered that day. A handwritten note on the source text indicated that the text of the message was being released in London at 2 p.m., July 22, Washington time, to coincide with Lloyd’s announcement of the proposal in Parliament. In his reply, Macmillan rejected the premises outlined in Khrushchev’s message, but embraced his conclusion. Macmillan proposed a special meeting of the Security Council, to be attended by the heads of government suggested by Khrushchev, or designated representatives, to discuss the Middle East. Macmillan noted that he was prepared to attend such a meeting, and he assumed that Khrushchev would attend as well. (Department of State, Presidential Correspondence: Lot 66 D 204)

In light of this development, Dulles returned a letter to Lloyd that evening through the British Embassy:

“Matters have moved on your side rather more rapidly than we had anticipated, and I would have liked to have had a little more time to concert our views and also to seek closer concert with the French. However, in view of your statement in the House of Commons, Mr. Hagerty put out a statement from the White House indicating that if a meeting of the kind you suggested were generally desired, the United States would join in following this orderly process.

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“Also, learning that you were releasing today the Prime Minister’s message to Khrushchev, we are doing the same. It is somewhat more lengthy than yours. It does contain in substance the sentence which was in my original draft, although omitting the word ’gladly’.

“I hear a rumor that the Soviets will accept on the assumption that the three Western Heads of Government will be there. If they accept promptly, it must be that they are really frightened about possible developments, perhaps from Turkey.

“I hope that we are doing the right thing. I can see the advantage of the United Nations mantle around Lebanon and some United Nations solution for Jordan, although, as I said, it is not clear tome how Jordan can, standing alone, be made into a viable community, and I do not think that the United States would go on subsidizing it other than as an emergency matter. These are perhaps matters to be thought of.” (Ibid., Central Files, 396.1/7–2258; included in the microfiche supplement)