293. Telegram From the Department of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom1

2077. Gist Amman’s 596 and 597 to Department2 (repeated separately London) conveyed British Minister Lord Hood who undertook to take matter up urgently with FornOff. Without going into Rifai’s interpretation US/UK policies we told Hood it appeared to us Hussein and Rifai saw handwriting on wall. In putting price for their continuing in business so high, probably in realization we would be unable meet it, King and Rifai may be seeking justify decision to get out. It was our view that precipitate departure of King would be most undesirable although change of government might not be too bad a development in post-GA atmosphere.

US–HKJ treaty and massive financial and military support out of question. Since it unlikely US could make public statement which would satisfy King and Rifai, problem seemed to come down to whether limited program of assurances and tangible support could be devised which would have effect inducing King at least refrain from precipitate decision throw in his cards.

In view Jordanian request for reply prior SYG’s departure from Jordan we hope have FornOff views early next week.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 785.00/8–2358. Top Secret. Drafted and approved by William C. Lakeland.
  2. Documents 289 and 290.